A Letter to Samuel
The only reason that I'm writing this post today is that the one year anniversary of my grandfather's death (today) just happens to be coinciding with me trying to find something that I put away for "safe" keeping somewhere in my house (okay, this happens everyday).
The thing I was looking for led me to a box of Samuel's things that I collected in the first few months of his birth. There are cards, hospital instructions (which I apparently kept both the English and Spanish versions - first time moms!), his hospital hat, etc. Tucked among the letters of congratulations was a note to Samuel, from my grandfather. I am posting it partly in memory of him and partly because, given my history, I will be turning this house upside down one day looking for this letter I'm sure.
My relationship with my grandfather was often a war of words. We had verbal sparring matches on the phone, tried to make the other laugh to prove who had the quickest wit and we used to send notes back in forth in the mail full of scathing insults. He didn't get serious that often. This letter was as much to me as it was to Sam.
November 18, 2007
Hey Sammy, or Sam or Samuel,
Welcome to this particular planet.
Whichever one of those names you choose to use.
This letter is being written on the actual day that you picked to leave a well fed, warm and carefree existence, and come forth into the world to take a shot at your idea as to just how this planet should be operated. Right off, your going to let the rest of us know that we haven't prepared a paradise to just your liking.
You're going to point out hunger. You're going to vote for clean pants, food on demand, of warm loving - of which you're going to get more of than you really deserve.
When everything is totaled up, you're going to find more things that you don't like, but you're going to find a lot in your life's term that is interesting, and things that seem to present a lot of laughter, fun, love and welcome surprises that makes it all more than worthwhile.
You're going to find good things and bad things. The most important thing that will ensure a worthwhile life is in your own hands. You will learn more what is good and what is bad. Sometimes the bad will look like the good, but the trick is to be alert and learn to tell the difference. You have already done one great thing on the right side, and that is you picked two winners to be your Mom and Dad. They are the best tool in helping you to grow into a happy and useful life. They will help you when it comes to choosing your activities, friends and the right way in your treatment of others. You can't go wrong by sticking with the truth, being honest and letting others witness you being honest and considerate of the feelings of others.
All in all, you have a great life before you. Aside from your Mom and Dad, you have a host of others that love you, are proud of you and wish you the very best that life has in store for you.
I'd like to be the very first to offer you a hearty
VERY HAPPY FIRST BIRTHDAY
GG-Daddy Cooke (Great Granddaddy Cooke)
It doesn't get much better than that.
ok...I'll be funny tomorrow.