Hey baby girl,
It’s Father’s Day, and 6 weeks before you’re due for your grand entrance (or as I like to think, your grand exit). You’re the size of a pineapple right now, and you’ve already got a lot of spunk, doing regular acrobatics in my tummy. Your dad is jealous that he hasn’t been able to bond with you the way I have, but he’s just as excited as I am to meet you on the outside. Whenever he thinks about how close we are to D-Day (deliver day), a surge of emotion comes over him, and he goes into a frenzy of getting our affairs in order to prepare for your arrival. It’s quite endearing.
Though your father’s been making dad jokes and rocking the dad bod long before you came onto the scene (photographic proof below), it’s still weird for me to think of him as a dad. I think it’s because he and I have only known each other for less than four years, and during that time, we fast-tracked through friendship, relationship, engagement, marriage, and are now expecting. The role that he plays in my life seems to be ever changing, but still, he is undoubtedly the best thing that’s ever happened to me, and I’m sure he’ll be the best thing that’s ever happened to you too.
Over the course of your life, I’m sure you’ll hear many of our life stories, but today, I want to start from the beginning and tell you about me and your father’s beginnings.
Your dad and I met in the summer of 2013, when I went to LA to visit Uncle Chris. Uncle Chris didn’t have a car, so he hit up the only friend he had at the time—your father—to chaffeur us around in exchange for some free drinks. A weak proposition, I thought. But your father saw a friend in need and the opportunity to show a stranger (me) his hometown, and agreed! That summer, the three of us cruised LA, and road-tripped up and down the California coast, and it was the time of my life. Uncle Chris, your father, and I would become lifelong friends, and I didn’t know it then, but me and your father would become much more than that.
I came back to Toronto after that summer, and settled back into my regular ol’ life. I was dating guys here and there, but no one like your father. We had the spark, but I didn’t have the guts to pursue something long distance. Fortunately, your father did. He came to Toronto to visit often. He met and courted all of my friends, jumped through all the hoops that my mom laid out for him, and even networked his way into landing a job at a gaming studio here. He made it so that all I had to do was say yes. And with that, he packed his bags, said farewell to the only life he had ever known, and embarked on a new adventure in a foreign country with me by his side. In his words, “In your lifetime, there are many jobs you’ll have, many places you’ll live, but only one wife by your side.” What a closet romantic that guy is.
Despite my trepidation at him making such an impulsive move here, we had a great first couple of years together. We were your classic millennial socialites—double income, living downtown, and going out to eat, drink and party on the regular. Your father also adopted my lifestyle for active living, and we went hiking and biking in and around the city often, as well as countless road trips and weekend trips together. Those years were some of the happiest of my life.
Somewhere along the way, your father proposed to me and we got married. By that point, there wasn’t a doubt in our minds that we would spend the rest of our lives together. And you know, I wouldn’t say that marriage wasn’t even a turning point in our lives… we continued to live in our little condo, go out with friends, and travel the world. It was just like our pre-married life on a repeat cycle, and though it was grand, about a year and a half in, we were ready to start building something deeper and more meaningful together.
Our first move was buying a house, and at that point, we were already starting to prepare for your arrival. We know that this would be the home that we raised you in, and where some of your first memories will be. We settled on a small and simple house in Riverdale, a neighbourhood that is youthful, culturally diverse, supports a walking culture, and is close to both downtown Toronto and some of our favourite nature spots in the city. I hope that these factors will be foundational in the values and lifestyle that we share with you in your early and formative years.
At the time, we thought we were planning for the somewhat-distant future, but actually, it wasn’t long after we moved in that we learned that we were pregnant with you! We were elated and scared shitless at the same time. My first few months carrying you brought me to my knees, and I knew even then that you were going to be a force to be reckoned with. Doubts started creeping into our minds and we started wondering whether our life experiences had really prepared us for this.
But in the months that followed, we gained our footing by doing everything we could to prepare for you. We talked to other parents about foreign things like how to change a diaper and breastfeeding techniques. We busied ourselves in setting up a nursery for you and having a baby shower to celebrate you with your future aunties and uncles. We went on a babymoon halfway across the world. We discussed the financial implications and our emotional readiness.
These days, we’re being approached regularly by random strangers who seem to be overjoyed about what was in store for us, and it just feels like everyone around us is celebrating you!
That brings us up to today.
As we get closer to the big day, I start imagining what you’ll be like and what our relationship with you will be like. You’re our first and I’m sure we’ll learn a lot from each other and from you. I ask for your patience and forgiveness for the stumbles we may make along the way, but know that we were trying our best and were filled with the best intentions.
Your father and I can’t wait to bring you into this world, to share this journey with you, and to see what kind of young woman you grow up to be.
If it’s a shitty one, it’s your dad’s fault.