I’ve been wanting to write to you for a while, but I never quite knew how to get my words down on paper (or, well, computer screen). We never had the opportunity to meet, but I heard a lot about you and even got to see some pictures and videos of your life! I’m very thankful for that.
You’re pretty awesome, and I’m not just saying that. You have left me awestruck in many ways and amazed at the joy you brought to your parents and family every day you were alive. Every time I hear more about you, you changed my life a little bit.
But I’m getting ahead of myself. I haven’t even told you who I am!
My name is Kristy and I go to college with your Uncle Stephen out in California. When you were still in your mom’s tummy, he told me about you and that you might be born with some unique conditions. At the time, I knew nothing else about you and didn’t hear anything more for a while.
Then, one day in early June, Stephen posted a link online to your mother’s blog. You had just been born! I read all about your birth and about how excited your mom and dad were to finally see you face to face. I then went back and read all your mom’s blog posts about her joys and struggles during pregnancy. I’m sure you know already, but she was so happy for you to be in her life. I haven’t met either of you, but I could tell just from reading words on a page that you two were a special pair- she was as lucky to have you as you were to have her.
Now, dear Sophia, I must confess something to you. I am a skeptic. I try to be hopeful and optimistic, but a lot of times, it’s all an act to cover up my fears. I have heard over and over again that God exists and that He is merciful and kind and has a plan for everything, but I would be lying if I said I didn’t often have doubts about it all. And it’s not just God I have my doubts about, but sometimes I have them about people as well. If nothing else, dear little one, I’m glad that you didn’t have to see how broken the world is. People do bad things and there is hurt everywhere. Disasters happen on a daily basis and, to be entirely honest, a lot of the time I am completely devoid of hope. I find it difficult sometimes to believe that things will ever get better.
Enough of that talk, though. I want you to know that you helped me have hope, Sophia.
When I first read about you, I was baffled by your mother’s perseverance in light of circumstances you both had to live through. I cried sometimes because I just couldn’t understand how your family could have so much faith and hope when I had so very little.
You taught me that belief is not worthless. That sometimes, God works through tiny hands and not-so-easy pregnancies and 47 days of life.
Once again, I must be honest with you. I was talking with your Uncle Stephen once and he told me that it was incredible to see you changing so many peoples’ lives. I agreed with him out loud, but wondered to myself how it was possible that you had made such an impact in so little time. How could he really know if you had changed peoples’ lives?
And that’s when I realized how much of an impact you had (and are still having) on me. At a time in my life when I felt like there was no hope, you showed me that it’s worth it to keep fighting. That even a tiny amount of good can make the world infinitely better, and that life is not meaningless. I know I’m not the only one who learned from you. Countless other people heard your story and uniquely learned from your example, as well.
You have had an incredibly positive effect on my life and faith, and for that, I am infinitely thankful. You were and are a special girl, Sophia. You impacted more people in your 47 days than some do in 47 years.
I don’t know if I believe in a literal heaven, but if it’s out there, I sure hope I get to meet you one day.
With love from a girl hoping to be more like you when she grows up,