Welcome to the World, Riley

My sister had her baby yesterday. A girl: Riley Jean. We got to see her today (I forgot the camera at home. Stupid me). Beth and I took turns running down to her room to see the new baby & parents while the other of us stayed in the waiting room with the boys. The hospital didn't have a nursery window so that they could have seen her.
Here begins a short rant; you may skip ahead to the next un-italicized part. I don't get why hospitals charge for parking. It's a new thing for me. They charged in Surrey/White Rock and they charge in the Twin Cities. First, if I'm there as a patient, it's just more salt on the open wound. I've already been through several hundred dollars worth of treatment and then I have to go and pay for parking there. Second, if I'm visiting someone in the hospital, let me visit them. Heck, most of the time the visit tends to do the patient better than the medical treatment, so they should be paying me. With all the money poured into the health care system, you'd think those greedy capitalists could turn their heads away from the parking lots for a while (I know--it's not as simple as all that). It's not like most people go to the hospital because they want to, so why can't we make it a little easier on them. End rant.
It's been just under two years since Nils was born. And already I've forgotten how small they start out (we had forgotten after Anders, too, by the time Nils was born). It may sound cliche, but life is a miracle.

So here's my note to Riley:

Welcome to the world, Riley. You've got a tough path ahead of you. Growth is hard. It's not always easy, nor is it always fun. And it doesn't end. At least if you want your life to mean anything. I'm still growing. Jesus (you'll learn about Him in Sunday School. Just remember that He loves you very much) says that He's the vine and we're the branches. And sometimes the branches need to be pruned. Pruning hurts. But it makes you stronger. Just like being born wasn't all that fun, but your life's getting better and you're getting stronger each new day. So don't run from the pruning, but let it help you grow into the wonderful woman that you'll become. Remember that already you've got a lot of people who love you. Just because you're you. Not because of anything you'll do or because of how you look. You're special kid (and you've got some special cousins who love you, too). So, enjoy the journey ahead of you, knowing that God made you the way you are on purpose and that He loves you a great deal. We do too.
Uncle David
(Oh, you've got 2 Uncle Davids. We'll sort that out sometime & come up with a good nickname for me.)

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