I caught you doing something basically every night. It’s nothing bad, but actually very sweet.
After a looooong day at work, after coming home only to be bombarded by the need to breastfeed our daughter Avery, as I am asking you several questions before you have time to think, after you spend the little time left before bedtime playing with Avery, after you nurse her to sleep (or try your damnedest since she’s a crazy), after you finally lay down to relax, you do something that warms my heart.
You look up pictures and videos of Avery, as if just to make sure she’s really ours since it seems so surreal at times.
When you join me in the living room where I’m usually writing for my blog, I’ll glance over and see you watching an old video of our child on your phone or on Instagram. Most times you have your phone on silent, but I can always hear Avery’s giggles in my head just like you can while watching them.
And the pictures. We have pictures from months ago as well as current day that you will make your way through. Again, from your phone, on Facebook, or on Instagram, you scroll through and look at the wonder that is our beautiful daughter.
Even on those nights when you’re so tired you go straight to bed, I know you make sure to look through pictures and watch videos of our growing girl. Sometimes I hear the videos playing, but other times it’s just instinct.
I can see it in your eyes and from your actions, you absolutely adore our daughter, and not even the world itself is good enough for her. There are times when you doubt yourself as a mother, but I want you to know that doubt is complete nonsense! You’re the best mother and wife there is, and you make both Avery and me so very happy.
Please, never, ever, think of yourself as anything less than the best. There are times when we don’t hug as much as we should, and when we finally do, it feels wonderful and I don’t want to stop. Unless I have tea tree oil on my face and you have carrot seed on yours.
Basically, dear, I just want you to know that seeing you simply look at old pics of our daughter says a lot about how kind, loving, and caring of mother you are. Avery is the luckiest girl to have you as a mom, and I, the same as my wife.
You’ll probably be paranoid every time you get on your phone at night, but don’t worry. I don’t sit and stare or anything, just happen to see our daughter on your phone. It’s precious. You’re precious. Our family is precious, and I hope that never changes.
Kelley, dear wife, I love you. I thank you for everything you do.
A version of this first appeared on Going Dad.