Dear Baby, a letter to my niece

Dear Baby

I haven’t even met you, and I already love you. You just got born today, and the second I got the news, a new room opened up in my heart and you moved in. That will always be your room. Your stuff will always be there.

Until today, you were a bud growing on my brother’s branch of our very small family tree. Now you have burst into the world, you are a tendril wrapped around my heart. A vine stronger than steel. I feel like I’m going to burst.

Before you were born, I knew what your name would be. It was a celebrity’s name, a good friend’s name, the middle name of my little sister. It was a word I knew. Now I hear your name and it is a heartbeat. I hear your name, your little name, and the tears spring up, uncontrollable. That is your name now, and I haven’t even seen you but I already know it suits you.

You are a few hours old, and I am already so excited and scared about the world you will, every day, discover. In the hours that you have lived in the world I have run away with myself, with my vision of you. I already see you standing defiant, five years old, little fists bunched, shouting. I already see you, nineteen, glowing and proud and achieving. I already see you rolling your eyes, twelve now, when I tell you that reading is cool.

I already adore you.

There is a new person in the world today. That person is you.

I can’t wait to meet you.

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