Letter to Michael

Dear Michael,

MRB-day one-crop
It was the 12th of July when I first saw you. After two long days of helping you to arrive you finally did and we heard your first cry. I cut your umbilical cord and held you in my arms as they sewed up your brave mother and made her comfortable. We’ve been waiting and wanting you for a long time and now you are here! The joy you bring is almost overwhelming. The love for you hurting. You are truly a blessing and a wonderful bundle of joy!

I look at you now asleep in your cot, your mom resting in the bed beside me and I wonder what my mum and dad would have made of you. I’m reminded of when my dad was probably not much bigger than you when he was given away by his mom to strangers, and those strangers became my grandparents. His real mother I understand wasn’t allowed to marry with a child. When my father was born in 1919 to an unmarried single woman, it was considered a disgrace, how times have changed, it seems the norm now to have children out of wedlock! You however, my son, are born into a happy and God blessed marriage! My Dad didn’t see me for two weeks after I was born due to one of the worst winters to hit London. He was then taken away from me when I was 14 by cancer at 56 years young. I didn’t really know him, he was mostly at the beck and call of his parents. We had only one holiday together that I remember, and that was a day’s trip to the seaside, to a sandy beach, building castles in the sand, burying dad leaving only his head showing, and the picnic lunch of course. I hope we will know each other so much better and have many holidays together. The story of my parents is a little long and convoluted and you will hear about them one day, but for now, I hope and pray we can give you a happy childhood that prepares you for adulthood and the big wide world out there. I’m sure my dad would dote on you and my mother would probably be delighted and spoil you rotten! My only wish was for them to see you, and just how much joy you bring to us.

You have been born in Australia to a mom from South Africa and a dad from England. A coupe of immigrants in a country made of immigrants. A wonderful country full of potential, and although Australia, as a country has many faults, it is still an amazing country, with beautiful people with big big hearts.

We live in Australia at a time of worldly social change and unrest, political shenanigans, and economical “in between” failures. That’s the sad bit. The good bit is there are people out there trying to put it right. There is still community and family, and a God who cares, so there is still hope!

The world is an amazing place, it is teaming with life, without which we wouldn’t be here. It has some amazing views from the top of mountains to the depths of the oceans. This planet we call earth is spinning in space around a star (the sun) which is essential for life. The earth viewed from space is amazing too. I am amazed at how it all holds together! There is intelligent design throughout this planet and beyond. A coincidence it is not.

I look at you now, sleeping peacefully without a care in the world, your occasional sigh and gurgle seeks to remind me of your vulnerability and dependance of others. I have had a life thats run close to the edge, and on the odd occasion beyond, diced with death, but also found life, in Jesus. I’ve seen life from both sides, rich and poor, in the black and white days and now the days of colour, and I can look around me and see God’s hand in all that I’ve done, and how’s he’s pulled me from the abyss and think what a fool I’ve been, but by the grace of God I am here as your father, totally amazed. My view on life and its many colours has changed in the few days I’ve known you. It’s sometimes easy to get caught up in the rat race, how quick to the top (or bottom), the glory and prizes of life’s rich tapestry, but life is so much sweeter.

In the end, Michael, you are my son whom I love dearly, you are a new hope, your cry the sound of new beginnings.