I wish for you so much wonder.
So much wonder that you never stop believing there is magic in even the most ordinary of things.
So much wonder that you never stop believing anything is possible.
But I also wish for you to know contentment, so that you can find joy even if your dreams turn out to look quite differently than you thought they would.
May you always treasure kindness. May you treat every person as if they have a special spark of heaven buried deep within them. I know this will be really hard sometimes, but I hope you will think it is worth it to dig.
You both have a feistiness inside you that is strong, and I hope it always will be. I hope I can teach you to channel it into fighting for good things.
You are both curious and stubborn and spunky in your own unique way.
Keep that heart for learning close, don't let others sway you from who you are and never stop drawing people closer with your joyfulness.
I hope you will know how incredibly valuable you are.
I hope you will know deep in your soul where this worth comes from.
I hope you will know deep in your soul where it doesn't.
I hope you will want to read lots of books, and I hope you tell me all of your favorite parts.
I hope we can lay one of your beds together when you're teenagers, eating our way through our second bowls of ice cream, talking about things that matter.
I hope the voices comparison and competition and envy will never speak to you. But I know they will.
So I hope that when they speak, you will have the wisdom to recognize them for what they are and the strength to quiet them.
I hope you will feel beautiful. I hope you will trust that the way to grow beauty is from the inside out and not the other way around.
I hope you will know that a job or a grade or a role or an accomplishment or a mistake or a heartbreak will never ever define who you are.
Evie, I know we battle it out a lot right now, your strong little will clashing against mine. But I fight for you to trust my authority now so that later when you are much, much older, we can trust each other as friends. I hope this for Nora when she's your age, too.
Nora, you are sweet and observant and brave. I know a lot of this is because everything is still new to you; you're still seeing everything through those baby eyes. But I hope these qualities stay with you as you walk through life.
I hope and pray all of these things and more for you both. And I hope and pray that I can be a good guide for you in all of them.
But even as I seek to plant these truths and character traits into who you are becoming, I know that I am weak in so many of them.
I care too much about what people think and compare myself constantly and defend myself at the expense of others. I get mad at the silliest things and waste my time and whine about my hair looking terrible.
It's an everyday struggle to remember where my worth comes from. Choosing joy is a conscious effort. Contentment comes from a hard fought battle, usually.
I worry that I'll pass on these insecurities to you. But then I remember that out of all the women in this world, God picked me to be your mother. And sometimes I don't understand why, but it encourages me and strengthens me.
So my prayer is not that you will be blind to my struggles, but that I can be an example of how to keep working and growing and learning even in the midst of them. I know you will realize, probably sooner than later, my plentiful imperfections. But I hope I can show you how to embrace grace and forgiveness and persistence and patience.
I hope I can be an example of how to struggle well.
Enveloping us like a tent, always, is love.
It's what binds us together, may we never forget it.
Know that you are deeply loved, and that God placed each of you here in this quirky family of ours on purpose, and He has a plan for you both.
I am so thankful that He chose to give us you. I am so honored to be your mama.
I can't wait for all the adventures we'll have together.