|Aunt Chelle & Katerbug at the beach - Summer 2010|
Today, I am really missing my niece, Katelyn....so I decided to post the letter I wrote to her on the day that she was born...love you, Katerbug!
January 24, 2008
Well, you’re finally here. Happy birthday! I would love to tell you that I am more excited about you being here than anyone else, but I think your parents may have me beat…by just a little bit! I was with them just moments after they first found out about you. The three of us just cried and hugged, dreaming of when this day would come…and now, the waiting is over! It’s a great story, but I should let your parents tell you. I’m not going to steal their thunder this early on in the game.
As you get older and start asking to see your baby pictures, you won’t see any of your Aunt Chelle. The problem is…I am in graduate school in Texas, which is about 16 hours away from where you are. (That is about how long it would take if you watched your favorite movie ten times in a row.) So even though you won’t see my face, hopefully, this letter will show you that my heart was in Knoxville on your first official birthday.
I’m not gonna lie to you, Katerbug. I was pretty disappointed when you didn’t show up three days ago. I really wanted us to be birthday twins. Your Uncle James, on the other hand, wishes you would have held off a few days since his birthday is January 28. We are getting married in 120 days, so apparently, God is even using your birth to try and teach us compromise. (You’ll meet God soon, and you will love Him, I promise. Your parents will introduce you as soon as they can.)
Speaking of your parents – wow, you have one amazing mom. I should know. She had great practice being a mom on me, her little sister. She was always holding my hand when I crossed the street, even though Gigi already had me on one side. She was the one who gave me advice the first time I liked a boy. (Don’t say gross – it will happen to you one day too!) And she was also the one who consoled me when I found out he liked someone else. I was like her dolls, except I was better, of course. Oh, and in case she tries to blame the fact that she can’t french braid on me…I can’t help it. Your mom has gotten much more gentle in her hair styling since she first learned how to French braid.
She was more than my second “mom” though. Your mom is also my best friend. As soon as you learn to talk, you need to start bugging your parents to have another baby. If you take after your mom in personality as much as you look like her, you are going to be one amazing big sister, Katelyn. My next niece/nephew is one lucky kid.
Oh, and while I’m thinking about it. There will probably come a time when your mom gets on your nerves. You’ll think that she doesn’t know anything and that she can’t do anything right. But just remember that you heard it here first. Your mom loves you more than anyone else on this earth, and she wants what is best for you. Even if you don’t understand her, trust her. No matter how hard that is. About the time you are ready to finish high school, something inside of you will just click, and you will know that she was on your team the whole time, and you will be a better woman…because of her. Your Gigi did this for your mom and me, and your mom will do the same for you. You’ll find that as you get even older, you will hear her advice echo in your mind each time you are faced with a decision.
And let me just tell you one of the best things about being a girl – DADDY! Hands down. Your G-Daddy is one of God’s greatest gifts in my life. To this day, I still think he is the best, strongest man in the world (equal to your Uncle James, of course.) He’ll be the one who shows you why following God is the smartest decision you can ever make. You see, God is your Heavenly Father, which means, he’s just like your daddy…except better. I know that’s hard to imagine, but it’s true. Some little girls don’t have good examples of what a Heavenly Father would be like, but that’s not the case for you. He will shower you with unconditional love, spoil you as much as he can, (Try not to abuse that), and he will set the standard for the man you will marry someday. That guy has big shoes to fill, but we are already praying that God will shape him to be the spiritual leader that you need.
I know I’ve talked a lot about God, and you probably don’t even remember Him right now. It’s okay. It’s been a big day, coming out of your mom’s womb and everything. You’ve been preoccupied with other things. But God was the man who created you. He formed you in His image, and you are fearfully and wonderfully made. As he molded your shape and taught you how to smile, He developed a plan for your life. You have a bright and beautiful future ahead of you, sweet Katelyn. You simply have to trust Him with all of your heart and not rely on your own strength. Then, He will direct your paths and work for your good, since you are called for His purpose.
He’s put some of His best in your path. Your mom has an incredible servant’s heart (that she learned from Gigi), and your dad works harder than anyone I know, and he will provide you with everything you will ever need. Your G-Daddy is the closest living, breathing example of Christ that you will ever encounter. I pray daily that by the time you are old enough to read this letter that your Aunt Michelle and Uncle James will be closer to you in distance…but I promise that you are in my thoughts and prayers everyday.
I haven’t actually laid eyes on you yet. I haven’t held you in my arms. But I can already tell you that I love you more than I ever thought possible. I promise that no matter how far away I live, if you need me, I’ll be there as soon as I can get to you. Since I can’t be there physically to change your diapers or tickle your little toes, I’m going to do the next best thing. I’m going to pray for you.
Sweet Heavenly Father, I submit the life of my precious Katelyn to you. God, I pray that you would give her everything her heart desires. Use her to change the world for you. Send your angels to gather around her and protect her. Make her heart yearn to learn Your Word, and help her to be able to recite your teaching to resist the devil’s temptations. Use the sun’s warmth to remind her family’s love. Every time she sees a sunset or a mountain range, have her reflect on Your power. Don’t let anything stand in the way between her relationship with You. Amen.
We’ll get to have fun soon, I promise. So you just grow up sweet and strong, and know that your Aunt Chelle loves you. And bout that birthday twin thing, three days is close enough to still be twins, don’t you think? ☺
Love always in Him,