As soon as I saw you, I knew a grand adventure was about to happen. (Winnie the Pooh)
Dearest Broden Andrew Meassick,
You are already one week old! Last Saturday, I was nervously sitting in the waiting room after a long night of helping your mommy get ready to bring you into the world. My cell phone buzzed. It was a picture of you from your daddy. There you were, all pink and healthy. Tears of relief, gratitude and joy sprang from my eyes. Your grand adventure was officially beginning. Born on 11/18/2017 at 7:03 am, you were 7 pounds, 6 ounces and 20 1/2 inches long. We had been waiting for you, the Baby Bear (as your mom and dad nicknamed you), to come and change our worlds forever!
After a short time, I was told I could meet you in person. My heart did a little (okay, a HUGE) leap for joy. I walked quickly to your room where your mommy was holding you against her skin, a sight I will never forget: my baby holding her baby. Feelings I hadn’t known before flooded my soul. After a few moments, I brought you into my own arms and as I gazed into your very alert and big eyes (thank God you got your daddy’s eyes…this was a specific prayer we all had based on the small-eyed relatives on your mommy’s side) for the first time, I thought to myself, “What will you be like? What adventures will life bring you and you bring it?”
Adventure awaits you, sweet Broden! Those words are written on the sheets in your crib. Great adventure. Hazardous adventure. Wonderful adventure. Terrible adventure. Quiet adventure. Exciting adventure. Sweet adventure. Sad adventure. Unique adventure. Hard adventure. Joyous adventure. Helen Keller writes, “Life is either a daring adventure or nothing at all.” That’s one thing I can promise you, Broden: it will be an adventure and it will be all of those things at one time or another.
The very best and first thing about your adventure is that you are extremely loved. The God who formed you has absolute and unconditional love for you. Nothing you can ever do will make Him love you less or love you more. He loves you just because you are you. You will find rest for your soul in that place.
Your creative, smart, kind, hard-working, compassionate mommy and your free-spirited, adventurous, wise, level-headed, willing-to-grow daddy are absolutely head-over-heels in love with you. They will love you no matter what and nothing you can do will change that. You will find rest for your soul in that place.
You also have grandparents, aunts, uncles, first-cousins once-removed (or maybe they are second cousins…it’s been a debate since you were born and Google has not been a help at all) and friends who have loved you from the first moment of hearing about you. You will never find yourself in a place that you won’t be loved. You will find rest for your soul in that place.
Rest for your soul matters because the adventure that awaits you matters. It’s yours and yours alone. Your inner soul anchored in unconditional love will be of immense value for living your outer adventure to the fullest. All kinds of small and large experiences will come your way, some good and some hard, some easy and some terrifying, but never forget that you have a safe place deep down inside that no one can take from you. You have a God, parents, family and friends who love you. Nothing can touch that! No one can take that away! Live in and from that place!
You are nicknamed the Baby Bear. You even have a stuffed “bear head” hanging on your wall in your room (kind of like your dad’s “party buck” head hanging in your family room). Bears are incredible animals. They have four characteristics that I find intriguing. They are extremely intelligent, strong, protective and affectionate. I’m sure you will be all of these and much more. But there is a fifth that is most important: every bear is an individual with a completely unique personality. You, Broden, are an individual with a completely unique personality. I want you to know that I will do all that I can to foster and encourage your very unique self and what aspects of life you find interesting. I don’t care if you love sports or music, if you are an introvert or an extrovert, if you can count to ten by age two or it takes you until two to take your first step. I promise to love you and love what you love. I have shared this with your mommy many times and I’m sure you will hear it from me every year on your birthday when I read you “Happy Birthday” by Dr. Seuss: “Today you are you, that is truer than true. There is no one alive that is youer than you.” Be you, Broden. Be you.
For your mommy and your aunt and uncles, I asked God to give me one verse from the Bible (my mom had a verse for me and it has been a light for my heart and soul). I have been asking God for the same thing for you. And guess what, Broden. God didn’t just give me one verse. He gave me a whole bunch. You must be extra special. They actually came because your grandpa was reading through the book of Colossians and I was prompted to check it out. These verses right at the beginning of the book struck me as those God would have from my heart to yours.
From the day I heard about you, I have not stopped praying and making special requests for you.
I pray that…
you will be filled with a deep and clear understanding of His will for you, that you will have insight into the ways and purposes of God.
you would live how God designed you to live, from a fully-known and fully-loved place and that you would have complete trust in Him. This brings Him the most pleasure.
your life would bear much fruit from all your hard work.
you would have a full, deep and clear knowledge of God.
you will be invigorated and strengthened with all power from God so that you will have much patience and joy.
I thank God because He has made you fit to share in all that is His. He has brought you into His Kingdom, one that is filled with love.
(Colossians 1:9-14 – EJGV – “Esther Joy Goetz Version”)
Broden, how fun that you are here! I am absolutely thrilled! I can’t wait to get to know you and go on some of your adventures with you. I just bet I will love you even more than I do today! I can’t imagine how that is even possible. But it is!
From one very excited person in your life who loves you like crazy,
(Not sure what you will name me yet)…
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