choose love

Dear Little One,

I thought that my 25th birthday
was my best birthday ever
knowing you were growing
inside of me.
But this year
as I hold and
feed you at my breast
I realize this birthday is better.

This year has been so hard
with challenges I didn't foresee.
I knew it wouldn't
be exactly easy
but didn't see
these particular challenges coming.
Even so, it's worth it
for my Little Love, my baby.

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I have learned much of love
this first year of motherhood
loving you, your father,
and loving myself.
You two are
wonderful teachers: loving me
and showing me how I
am worthy of beautiful sincere love.

Before your father married your mama
he created a little game.
When one lover said,
"I love you"
the other responded
with a question: "Why?"
The answers vary based upon
the needs of one or another.

The responses to this perennial question:
"Why do you choose to
love me each day?"
grow and change.
Sometimes they're silly,
sometimes almost too serious,
but always and forever they
remind us of our marital promise.

This promise that we made before
you were born. This promise
you see lived out
every single day.
This promise we
solidify every time we
play this sweet silly game
and say "I love you" again.

When Mama wonders why your father
would love a distracted and
distraught housewife who hardly
keeps the house
he tells her,
"Because love is patient,
keeps no record of wrongs,
and hopes for all good things."

When your father fusses yet again
at the state of affairs
at home and abroad
his wife whispers
"I love you
because you choose to
care even when you're tempted
to send them all to h*ll."

He loves me because I smile.
I love his scraggly beard.
He loves that I
follow his lead
and I love
that he leads well.
This game helps us remember
that love is a beautiful choice.

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Listen well, Little One, and learn
that looking for love reveals
how it is there
to be found
whether it's dark
and hard to see,
bright and in plain sight,
or a soft and intimate glow.

The topic of this letter to my little one was inspired by Sakura Bloom's Sling Diary prompt: Love.