Letter to my future 18 year old niece

Dear Ly,

I hope by the time you are 18, I am not still calling you with this nick name (means stubborn in Vietnamese).  I can be quite stubborn too, so if somehow you get me to stop calling you Ly, you should be very proud of yourself!

You were teething last week.  Since the moment you were born a year and a half ago, I think your teething is my least favorite process.  For 2 days straight you did not eat or drink at all.  This was according to your mother, though I knew she could be extremely dramatic at times.  When I came over to visit, you were just sitting on the carpet with your tired eyes glued to the TV watching your favorite music.  (By the way, you are the reason for my random burst of “Bah bah black sheep” singing! )  Your mom asked me to bring you jelly, hoping you would eat it instead of just “starving” yourself, which again, she could be a bit too dramatic there.  So, being a caring and wonderful aunt, I bought you a whole box of jelly.  I really wanted to make sure you had all the jelly you would ever need for one dinner.  While I was trying to eat the soup your mother made, she was preparing your dinner with noodles, which you always loved to eat, with the soup’s broth.  You took a spoon of soup, and that was it.  I could see tears about to come out of my sister’s eyes.  I had seen her worry but never had I seen her in such terrible shape.  She loves you so very much, my darling.  Your smallest cry, your tiniest boo boo, your unspoken noises of pain… means so much to her. 

Back to the non-eating teething issue!  Since your mom could not get you to eat, I thought I could.  I opened one of the jellies for you.  Instead of eating it, you decided to play with it.  I should had known!  After a few minutes, there were jelly all over the carpet, on your shirt and mine.  Jelly attempt failed!  Then, out of desperation, I went against my very own nature and gave you potato chips.  I was so conflicted.  Part of me wanted to stand my ground of healthy food, healthy babies.  The other part just wanted to get you to eat.  I chose the option that could save your life (well, not really but I wanted to think that).  Voila, you ate!  One chip, I started to smile.  Two chips, your mom anxiety began to drop.  Three chips, we were in business!  The sound of the cracking potato chips in your mouth sounded so much better than the Korean drama song that both your mom and I loved.  I never thought such a noise could bring to my heart so much joy.  I was so excited I ran to the kitchen and grabbed a bowl full of chips for you.  My day suddenly went from mundane to accomplished! I felt as though I just achieved something incredible.  And I did! 

My love, I want to write you this letter so that one day when you are angry with us, your mom and I, or think we do not love you, you are wrong!  I love you to the moon and back, and I can’t even imagine the love your mother has for you.  You gained one tooth, we lost sleep and complete transquility.  Just think about all the beautiful teeth you have now and the sleepless nights we endured!   

And now, I can’t wait for your hair to grow so I can take you to a kid’s hair salons.  Oh the little joy and hope you give us!!!!


Your aunt!



One thought on “Letter to my future 18 year old niece

  1. Oh!! I loved reading this! It took me back! I can identify with every moment–every emotion. Thinking your baby or your niece is not getting nourishment is the most nerve wrecking experience. I love you!



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