Welcome to the world, Lucia!

There was a surprise arrival to our family today: my second niece, Lucia Seline Yvette, was born!

She wasn't due for another 8 days, but I guess she just couldn't wait to get out into the world and start exploring it. And as my Mom said, what better day to be born than Labor Day? (Good one, Mom!)

6 pounds, 19 inches, and her Daddy - my little brother Tiago - says her favorite color is sky blue. That's all we've gotten out of her so far, but our family Whatsapp chat is lighting up with pictures and videos and exclamations of "cuuuuute!" already.

So wow - I'm an auntie for the second time. Huh. It doesn't seem to have sunk in yet. Perhaps because I'm not there. And it's moments like this where I do wish my family weren't so scattered. With my Dad and sister in Geneva, my Mom in Colorado, my brother and both his daughters in New Mexico, and me in London ... Well, thank goodness for technology, I guess!

I wonder, of course, what awaits little Lucia, and where I will be able to fit into her life. Who will she be? What will she dream of? What opportunities will be available to her that I didn't have? Conversely, what opportunities have I had that she might miss out on? What kind of a relationship will I be able to have with her?

As an aunt, I suppose I don't have any real responsibilities here. I know her parents will do the best they can, to love her and take care of her and teach her and let her fly. 

But if I can be selfish for a moment and slip in just a few wishes of my own for my lovely newborn niece, it would be this: 

Dear Lucia,

I just hope you'll be happy. I hope you'll never really grow up -- that no matter how old you get (even when you get to be my age, many years from now!), you'll still see the possibilities to play in life. I hope you'll be brave enough to laugh in the face of seriousness, to care for the things that really matter while releasing those that don't, to be spirited and spunky in whatever way is right for you, and to surround yourself with people and pursuits that contribute to who you are in a meaningful way.

I just hope you'll be happy.

Much love,
Auntie Joëlle