ETA: My baby is six months old and definitively not a boy. But I still wanted to put up all these pregnancy posts, as written, so I’m scheduling them to post twice a week for the month. This was written three days before our daughter was born.

My dearest son or daughter, our little lion,

We are within days of your birth…hopefully not weeks. I think I’ve never been so physically miserable in my entire life. Yet at the same time, you’re all I think about. It’s not so much that I need the suffering to end as it is, I need to meet you. I love you and I need to know who you are.

In some ways, I do already know who you are. You are everything we never knew that we wanted. You are perfect and it’s up to us to ruin you in the best ways. You are what made your Dad and I more than lovers and confidants and boyfriend and girlfriend, you made us family. You are what makes us both better, every day.

I imagine myself reading this letter to you someday, maybe when you are going to marry the love of your life, or when you’re about to have a baby of your own. There are a few things I want to tell you on whatever this momentous occasion may be.

First, you cannot even begin to imagine how much we love you. Think of all the people you hold dear, think of every soul you cherish, think of how big your love for us is, add all that love up and multiple it by a million…then know that before you even took your first breath of air, we loved you that much and more. There should be a word bigger than “love” so that a mother and father can tell their baby what they feel.

I’ve been madly in love with your father since the day he started teaching me how to cueca dance. By now, I’m sure you know, we were only together for 4.5 short months before we made you. We made you out of a crazed lust and passion for one another that I hope you too will live with whoever you love. We made you after 4.5 hard fought months — your dad saved his money so he could come visit me while I was on a month long trip to the U.S. He struggled with speaking English so he could win over my best friends and my mom, after having only been dating me for a week and a half. We went from zero to 60 in about a half a second. And then your dad got scared. I waited for him, I was patient with him, I let him seek me out again and again and again, all while he claimed he wasn’t sure. Because I knew his mind might not have been sure, but his heart always was. We mended ourselves together, we each fought for the other’s happiness within this new relationship.

And we always talked about having a baby. We didn’t talk about getting married or buying a house the way some couples do as a first step. We talked about how we wanted a little baby, a little you. We say we didn’t plan it, but we knew exactly what we were doing. We say we didn’t plan it, but the timing was perfect. We say we didn’t plan it, but as soon as we found out, we couldn’t have been happier.

Now you’re almost here. Almost, almost, almost. We may meet you within 24 hours. I think you’re a boy (if you’re not, I’m sorry, I’ve been calling you “he” throughout this entire pregnancy). I think you’ll have dark hair like your father and you’ll be beautiful, like your father. I know, without a shadow of a doubt, that I’ll recognize your little face as soon as I see it. We’ve been yours since forever, and you have been ours. You’ll come out and you’ll know that we’re your mom and dad and we’re the ones who will always love you.

If you’re getting married or having a baby of your own, I hope you are blessed enough to have found a love like ours. Your father is the best man in the world. He has done everything for you and me, everything so I can have a perfect and healthy pregnancy and keep you safe, and he’s done it all with love and patience. For the past 10 months, I’ve fallen more and more in love with him every single day, as he’s revealed himself, exposed his very core, and showed me what kind of man he is.

Whether you’re my baby boy or my baby girl, I hope you will be just like your dad, sweet in every way, gentle and strong at the same time. Filled with joy, slow to worry and quick to laugh. Hardworking, and fulfilled. Happiness overflowing from every pore.

He doesn’t let a day go by without kissing me, holding me and making feel wanted and loved and secure in every way. He has cherished me and doted upon me, made me smile the realest of all smiles. He has given me the sun and the stars and the moon and the whole universe in this pregnancy.

And you, you are the gift I’ll give to him.

Thank you for making us so damn happy.

We love you, our dearest little lion,

Your mom and dad