the day we knew

With two purple bands,
The stick has spoken:
We’ve a little Tan
Baking in the oven!

Dear Little Tan in the Oven,

I have yet to meet you. Your existence was heralded to us by two purple bands on a stick. And that sight made me, your Daddy (or Papa, or Tatay—I haven’t decided yet what I’d like you to call me) produce sounds that I’ve never heard myself make before.

Your mommy—yes, your mother’s decided that’s what you’ll call her—she beamed! That meant my silly reaction was not so bad after all. Just silly. You’ll need to get used to my silliness. (If it’s genetic, you might have inherited it. Congratulations!) After Googling like a mad man—sample keywords: “pregnancy weeks”, “human fertilization”, “pregnancy what to expect”—I learned that we, the three of us, are possibly in Week 5 of a 40-week journey.

I’m writing this letter to you while away from you and your mommy. I’m in Davao, where I was born. (Just typing that last word made me realize that, yes, I began my life pretty much like you are beginning yours now. And I’d like to think that your grannies, my parents, were happy to have me. I will confirm that tomorrow when I break the news of your coming to them.)

Tiny One, you have brought me so much joy just by being. I know right now you’re not more than a few millimeters in size and look more like a tadpole than a baby, but I feel you’ve already come to us. You’ve broken our twosome, and we don’t mind one bit! You see, we’ve been waiting for you. We’ve been trying, enjoying, and praying to make your coming possible. But now that you’re here, more and more we realize that you are not our creation in the truest sense. The truth is, you are the creation of a loving God in Whom all things find their being. And your mommy and I, well, we are happy accomplices.

Can I tell you a secret, Millimeter-Me? I’m anxious. Your father is a little worried because he knows a lot of things could go wrong from today until your scheduled launch date (which your Tita Maella, who’s a mommy doctor, pegs at July 15, quite close to your Tita Liza’s birthday). I want to take your mommy to the doctor right away so we can “see” you on the ultrasound screen and perhaps hear your heart beat. That will put me at ease, I think.

On the flight coming to Davao, I read my Bible. My reading plan brought me to Deuteronomy where Moses instructed the Israelites to teach God’s deeds and faithfulness to their children. I felt something wonderful reading that, as though God was telling me that when you’re old enough to ask about God, I should be able to tell you how mighty He is—how He has saved people like your mommy and me from the slavery of sin and brought us into His kingdom. I should talk to you about God often, when we walk, when we sit around the dinner table. And I should make sure that there are things—symbols—around the house to remind us of God’s faithfulness. (In the future, I believe I can make a case to your mommy for your crayon vandalism using this passage of Scripture. We shall see.)

I also read a passage at the end of the Bible where people offered their crowns to Jesus who was seated on a throne. They ascribed to Him glory, honor, and power for creating all things. They declared that by His will all things were created and have their being. I’ve read that passage many times before, but this time, I read it with you in mind.

Your coming to us, your very being, is not merely a by-product of natural systems and circumstances, as a well-designed machine would churn out stuff. The amazing truth is that your coming to us was willed by a loving Father in Whom you will have—wait, you already have—your being! That thought is all at once mind-blowing and heartwarming for me, my Precious One.

As I write this letter, I feel a bit uncomfortable and awkward. Maybe all this is premature? Perhaps you won’t be able to read this after all, for whatever horrible reason. I dread that thought. My eyes begin to water at that prospect. (Now you know your father is a pessimist, albeit a recovering one.) This feeling can only mean one thing. Little One, I love you already. Every bit of your forming and growing being. And I know your mommy feels the same way too, perhaps even more profoundly because it is in her body where the miracle of you is taking place.

As I said, you’re stilll in your fifth week in mommy’s womb. It is impossible for you to read this or even hear anything I have to say. So I will ask our Heavenly Father to relay this message to you. The barriers that are now keeping us from communicating do not exist for the Father. When He whispers these words to you, dear One, in whatever way His Spirit deems is best, please know that you are wanted and loved, even now.

Be strong and brave. Grow! Don’t give your mommy a hard time. You are loved with so much love I feel my heart would burst. I look forward to meeting you in the flesh after 35 weeks.




  1. Kuya, so happy for you and Daphne. She was already pregnant when we were talking about breastfeeding and babywearing etc etc.. awesome! Enjoy the journey, be blessed! 🙂
    (Yay, policies in St. Luke’s ensure the “First Embrace” and non-separation of mom and baby)


  2. We share in your happiness Kuya Alex and Ate Daphne. Praise be to God for this baby and the testimony of your lives in Christ. God bless.


    1. You cry-baby, you 🙂

      You can, but I’m sure you won’t. And shouldn’t. When it’s your turn, you’ll write about it from your own heart, and maybe—just maybe—make me cry too 🙂


  3. I never wrote a letter to any of my babies-in-situ. Yours gave me an idea. You think it’s too late now that they can ask, “Mom, are you okay?” Seriously, this is a moving, funny, beautiful letter, Aleks! Can’t wait to meet Adi.


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