Dear Lorelei, tonight as I rocked you to sleep, your little body wrapped up tightly in Mama's iron clad swaddle, your thin lips pursed against your pacifier and your bold blue eyes desperately trying to escape from heavy eyelids, you and I had a conversation you won't remember. Much as I have with your sisters before you, I wanted to take a moment, a moment still in the infancy of this life of yours to tell you all the things that I want for you.
Every parent wants for their child; it's a requirement for parenthood. Those that don't never were parents to begin with, only hosts and donors. But what each parent wants for the their child is unique to their own parenthood. It may stem from their own lacking or short comings, it may stem fair their failures or successes, it may come from some article that they read in Time magazine which made no sense to them but which they thought you may understand one day.
For you, much like your sisters, I don't want perfection. Perfection is boring, it's predictable, it's lacking. It's the flaws that make us unique. My deviated septum, my left eye, my chipped tooth - they create the image of me that you will come to know. With out these flaws I'm a stranger in your eyes. Now, I don't wish upon you any of these specifics flaws that I have, but I hope you embrace your flaws for what they are; a part of you.
I want you to be content. Not rich, nor poor, but in it's own unique expression to you, I hope you find fullness in what you have.
I want you to be joyful. Beyond happy, which despite expressions can be bought, as happiness is easily mimicked. Joy, on the other hand, is the smile that you can't keep from creeping across your face as you drive in gridlocked traffic and a familiar song explodes from your radio and reminds you of some warming memory.
I want you to be loved, but more over I want you to feel love for another. It's nice to know that your mother loves me; I find comfort in that. But what truly blows my mind is how much I lover her. How much I love you and your sisters. This side of the emotion truly grows my soul. I fear there are many people out there who are loved, but don't feel that love towards another. They have no real understanding of what they're missing.
I want you to feel compassion. I look at the world around me, the one we're passing to you in time, and given there are so many here, there are so few who seem to allow themselves to view the world through another's eyes. They spend so much time worried about themselves and how this effects them and how that will change them. ... they can't stop for a moment and realize there are 7 billion other people on this earth who are also changed and effected in their own ways. Have compassion for them, even if you can't help them or decide to choose what's best for yourself - still experience an understanding for them.
I want you to have gratitude. I'm certain you'll find your way in this world and achieve your own successes for which you will be rightfully proud (as will I of you), but be grateful for that which you've not had control over. You were born to a middle class family in Southern California, with several siblings who will support you and carry your load when needed. Fortune will continue to bounce your way more often then not; be grateful for those moments, appreciate them. Understand that you did nothing to deserve them and were blessed that they happened to you. Don't let them go unnoticed.
Have faith. Choose any religion, choose non at all - but have faith there is order and not chaos. That there is right and not wrong. That you matter, to someone or something that is beyond what any one who has ever lived on this earth will ever fully understand. Have faith in yourself, that you carry all the potential to achieve anything you can imagine.
And that leads me to the final want. I want you to imagine. Imagine anything. The only people to ever affect the world, where those that were capable of imaging they could. Sure, imagination brought us computers, and the arts and space exploration and medicine. But go back further. Imagination brought us cars and trains and telephones. It brought us ships and songs and language. Watch a man ride a horse some time. Eons ago, a similar man sat on the dirt and watched a stallion tear across the plains. And that crazy son of a bitch imagined himself on top of it.
By the time you are reading this it will be too late for me to want for you. You will already have grown down a pathway towards or away from these things. I hope some day we'll be able to finish this conversation. Unfortunately your sister Rosaline just vomited in her bed because she was sucking on the cats tail instead of going to sleep like she was supposed to. And yes, that's a live cat not a stuffed animal on whom she was sucking. .... did I mention I want you to have kids? Dear god how I want you all to have kids!!!!