Saturday, March 18, 2017


Dear son,

There was a quote from someone who said the days are long and the years are short. It is so true, as I think it was only yesterday I wrote an email to you for your first birthday. Alas, here we are and I hope I can put some thoughts together which will help you in one way or another.

Now, I want to try to add a little structure to these emails as I look forward to writing many of them in the future. My hope is you will be able to see your growth and progression easier from year to year by me adhering to some guidelines. 

I started with a question and asked "what would I want to know if my parents sent me an email?"It took me a while, but I came up with the central idea of highlights. Highlights of your life, our family, and the world. To cap it off, I plan on writing you some of the greatest lessons I have learned in my life, so you can take these and hopefully learn from them to improve yours. Well let's get into it!

There was so much growth for you this year, and I am not just talking about your physical growth. First, you learned how to crawl, walk, run and jump. Additionally, you began talking in both English and Portuguese. You are a quick read and have figured out how to manipulate the iPad almost by yourself. The only you can not do is log on, but I feel you will have mastered this by the next email I write to you.

In terms of our family, we also grew in many ways. First, your mom and I received jobs at our "dream School" in Shekou, China, and we will be moving to there this coming August. We are so excited to share all the experiences, but also to show you the world. Mom and I have grown so much living abroad, and want to give you this same opportunity. There is also the small matter of your baby sister, Elea, joining our family. She arrived on 12/02/2017 at 12:38 PM. You were not so sure of her at first, but have naturally taken the role of big brother already.

The world has also seen a lot of changes as well. Donald Tump was elected president of the US, which created much division in the country and the world. We are hoping things work themselves out, but he stands for a lot things your mother and I do not and want to teach you and your sister to see everyone eye to eye, and give everyone respect, even if they are different from you. This is a life lesson that we hope you learn, to share Christ even if you disagree with people.

Now for more life lessons. Before I do this, wanted to share a special moment we had this year. We really started to connect one day when you and your mom were painting. I remember going over and you putting your hand to mine and it was like we both saw into each others souls. Although the experience lasted seconds, it has been imprinted into my memory for eternity. Life is the accumulation of small moments, and I will cherish this one for all my days. 

Ok, now to the lesson. I want to share with you to EMBRACE life. Embrace means not to change or resist it. There are so many beautiful things God presents us on a daily basis, but often time we can not see them as we expect everything to turn out a specific way and try to control every aspect of our lives. I will discuss these matters when you are older and can comprehend them better, but know to EMBRACE what life presents you with. 

For example, I feel I expect too much of you, and at times find fault with what you are doing. However, this takes me away from being a better dad, and this is not what I want. What I do want is to suffer when you suffer, laugh when you laugh, and not hold you to the yardstick of the experiences of my life. 

Well, that is it for now, but happy 2nd birthday my dearest son!

Love you forever,
Dada aka Papai

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