Originally posted March 7, 2014.
A guest post from Lee Becker, a father waiting for his son to be born. Very sweet!
I can hardly contain my excitement as I anxiously await your arrival tomorrow! After so many months of planning for you and talking about you with your mother, you are finally going to be here. And, Mom and I are finally going to become parents – a dream we have shared since we were married five years ago. I am writing this to you because I want you to someday be able to look back and read it, and know exactly what I was thinking on the eve of your birth.
I Promise to Always Keep You Safe
As your dad, it is my job to keep you and Mommy safe, always. I will do my best to protect you both and to make sure you are secure even when I can’t be there. Right now, we will use the best baby play yard money can buy to keep you safe as you learn to comfort and entertain yourself surrounded by your toys. Later, I promise to teach you how to ride a bike, how to snowboard, how to water-ski, or any other thrill-seeking sport you might want to try. I will teach you all the ways you can embrace these challenges, while still keeping yourself and others as safe as possible.
I Promise to Teach You How to Be Happy
As you grow and learn, I want to teach you that life does not have to be complicated. Sure, you will encounter many hurdles, objections and tests in your life, but with perseverance and determination, you will overcome them, and that is one of the keys to inner peace and personal happiness. I will also show you that when Mom asks you to do something, it is much easier to do it to keep her happy than it is to argue about it! That will be our little secret, though.
I Promise to Encourage You Every Step of the Way
I will teach you that failing is nothing to be ashamed of, but rather a testament to your strong spirit and willingness to try, and to do whatever it takes to accomplish your goals. As my very wise father once told me, “Failure just means you are one step closer to success.” I will encourage you to keep trying; to keep pedaling on your bicycle until you learn to ride it; to keep throwing that basketball at the net until you score two points; to keep applying for that job until you get an interview; to keep asking out the girl you like, until she agrees to go to the movies with you, so she can see what a wonderful person you truly are. And if she can’t see it, then I will remind you that she may not be the kind of company you would like to keep in your life.
I Promise to Teach You the Importance of Living A Healthy Life
Hopefully, as your dad, I will lead by example all the elements of a healthy lifestyle. I promise to make physical exercise a priority and keep my body fit through diet and exercise so I can share your life’s accomplishments with you well into your adulthood. While you are a baby, I will push you in the jogging stroller as I run through the park. When you are a little older, I will invite you to ride your bike beside me as I run. And then, when you are old enough to keep up with me, I will enjoy the camaraderie of running through the park with my first-born son. One day, I will no longer be able to keep up with you, but if I have done a good job being your father, I know that when the day comes, you will take care of me.
It is getting late, so I will close my letter and try to get some sleep before it is time to go to the hospital where we will greet your arrival with joy and love, with all of our family there waiting to meet you. And Son, I want you to know that although your mother has done all the hard work to keep you healthy for the past nine months, I feel that you are very much a part of me, and I can’t wait to hold you in my arms and proudly tell the world, “This is my son!”
With so much love and pride,
Lee Becker, a Georgia writer and father of two, emphasizes safety as a vital part of raising a child. He recommends looking for well made and safe equipment such as a well made play-yard. In using a play yard to hold his children, he ensured that when he stepped away, even for just a second, they were contained, safe, and happy.