This is a letter I wrote to my firstborn son, Will, a few months after his arrival. Seeing as yesterday was Father’s Day, I though I would post it on my blog to try and express the emotions and feelings a dad feels towards his children.
On Thursday the 21st of July 2011 your mom’s and my world was forever changed.
You came into this world wide-awake and ready for action, and that has not changed since! Your name, meaning “strong-willed warrior”, fits you so well, and already I see such a courageous, strong and fighting spirit in you! From the minute you breathed your first breath you have stolen my heart, and I want you to know that, even though I won’t always get it right, I will never stop loving you.
You are flesh of my flesh and bone of my bone, and I truly do love you with every fibre of my being.
And so, little Will, my hope for you is that you will be strong. That you will have the strength to do what is right, the strength to be unique, the strength to say sorry and to forgive. But most of all, precious Will, I pray that your love will be strong. Your love for God, for your family, for your friends, and for the hurting people in this world.
My hope is that you will grow into a man with a will of his own. That you won’t hide who you are, but you will become a young man with your own unique thoughts and opinions, curious about those who are different but unshaken by those who do not understand you. I pray that you will discover what you are passionate about, what you love, what excites you – and that you will have the determination and discipline to work hard.
Finally, my hope is that you will be a warrior. That you will learn that there are right ways to fight. We pray that you will know what is worth fighting for, and what is not. William, may you become a man who stands up with humility, who has a courageous heart, and who pursues God’s purpose for your life with faith and trust.
My boy, your Mom and I are so excited to see what you do with your life. There will be so many things you will be able to do. But what will always matter more is who you are. Your character, your integrity, your love. These things are what really count.
There is a song that your mother and I have always loved, even before we knew you, but that captures our heart for you:
“You can leave, you can run, but ours will always be your home. If you have questions, we can talk through the night. And when you need it most I have a hundred reasons why I love you.”