Dear Binky,

I have written down plenty of little notes to you, but I thought it was time I wrote you a proper letter. I wrote your older sister letters all the time (I still do), and someday I will share them with you.

We’ve been watching you grow for some time now. Mommy’s doctor jokes that we will have a full album of pictures before you’re even born. And it’s true, we already have twelve pictures of you. Maybe by the time you become a parent twelve pictures won’t seem like a big deal, but nowadays that’s a LOT of pictures – four times as many as most parents get over the course of an entire pregnancy – and we’re not done yet. Tomorrow we’re going to get an even better look at you, and I can’t wait.

I’m anxious to figure you out. What times of day are you most active? I know you’re moving around like crazy in there, but I want to know your patterns. Your sister loved to kick late at night and not at all in the morning, and she turned out to be a night owl who loved to sleep in. She also kicked like crazy whenever I had apple pie, milkshakes, and chocolate. No surprise, she loved apples, ice cream, and fudge. Yesterday I was craving chocolate like crazy, so maybe you’ll like chocolate, too.

I do wonder what you’ll look like. I spent lots of time laying down when I was pregnant with your sister, and I would try to imagine her eyes, nose, mouth, and hair. She came out looking exactly like I’d expected, but then she looked completely different a few months later. Will you come out dark like daddy? Your sister was all black hair and olive skin when she was born. Or maybe you’ll come out light like mommy. Your sister lightened up, she had lovely porcelain skin and dark blond ringlets. I hope you have the same curly hair your sister and daddy have. I always wanted curly hair.

As I’ve told you before, you have an older sister who would have been twenty one months old yesterday. The two of you will be a little more than two years apart in age. I have so many stories about your sister to tell you, things that I know will make you laugh. Your sister is strong, funny, sweet, loving, and brave. And because you are a part of her, and she is a part of you, I know you will be all those things, too.

The inevitable pregnancy comparisons have begun. You’ve made me just as sick as your sister did. I am sleeping just as fitfully. I worry more about you. I was so worried about Madeline, but I was so blissfully unaware of what could happen. I know what can happen now. I don’t want anything to happen to you.

Baby, you are helping us in ways I hope you never understand. Mommy and Daddy aren’t the same people we used to be, but then, who ever is after they’ve endured a little life? You have given us something to live for and look forward to. You force Mommy to take care of herself when all she wants to do is stay in bed. You’ve given Mommy hope, something she never thought she’d have again.

I can’t wait to meet you. But please don’t come any time soon.

Love, Mommy