You carried a little baby inside you, a baby boy. I don’t know what went through your mind when you first found out you were pregnant with him. Was it similar to what I felt each of those early mornings in the cold bathroom: some combination of surprise, shock, gratitude, fear, excitement, worry? Maybe not excitement though. Maybe not gratitude. Maybe you were only terrified, or upset. I can’t imagine, but I certainly don’t blame you. You must have been scared. You probably felt alone.
You carried him anyway.
For nine months you carried him and ate food for him and suffered through aches and pain and discomfort for him. Yet all of that was probably nothing compared to the emotional rollercoaster you went through. I don’t know why you did it, or how you felt about it, but I do know that it mattered.
Back then, the future was a complete unknown for you. You had no idea who he would become or if you were making the right choice or whether the future was a worthy cause for all of your efforts. But you see, I’m on the other side of that future. I know how it all turned out.
I know that that tiny little boy that you carried–that squalling little bundle that you said goodbye to at only a few days old–I know who he became.
He grew up in a loving home, with doting parents, a high quality education, and opportunities galore. He loved dinosaurs, and then skateboarding, and then bass guitar. He went to college, became a voracious learner, and devoured academia with a joyful passion. Working nights in a French restaurant, he trained as a sous chef and became a self-proclaimed “foodie” and personal chef. He developed a passion for education, science, art, and technology, and by the time he turned 30, he had started a high school for project-based, community-centered education.
He now spends his days connecting teenagers with the world, with their community, and with each other, cultivating passions in them that I can only imagine will have a profound and lasting effect on the future of our world. He comes home at night and kisses his two babies, and a third on the way, and he fills their world with music, nature, books, adventure, and delicious food. He does that for me, too.
That tiny baby boy that you carried is my husband, the love of my life. He is the rock of our family, the sparkle in our daughter’s eye, the role model for our son.
There isn’t a good way to say thank you for the choice you made all those years ago and for all the heartache and pain you must have endured. But thank you.
Thank you for giving life to the most intelligent, passionate, talented, and motivated person I have ever met. Thank you for allowing him to grow up to be such a wonderful husband and father. You should be so proud.