Dear Little Man, I was recently holding you and speaking with a woman whom I had just met, and appropos of nothing, she asked, "That baby's head is really big. Is he well?" My son, the head to which she was referring was yours.

Now, it was not the head and the size thereof that I found most interesting about this unfiltered question that she asked out of complete impropriety. Because, to be sure, your noggin is of estimable size. We are not perturbed by it in this family. In fact, we all maintain that you are carrying a brain of tremendous proportion in that cabeza of yours.

Rather, it was the use of the word "well" in her interrogative that so captivated me.

My son, you are not old enough or anywhere near verbal enough to understand the ramifications of this four letter word "well." Soon you will be, though.

Well is a curious word in the English language. It can take the form of a noun, as in the place from which water is drawn. It can be an interjection of sorts, a placeholder, an audible pause. Its uses even within this function are varied. You can use it to show hesitation, as in "Well...?" or even outrage: "Well! I'll be! As I live!"

Of course, you are still too young to understand nuance.

Anyway. The context in which the woman who was clearly having a momentary out-of-body experience (how else could anyone be so inappropriate?) was that of an adjective. "Is he well?" she asked. Well. This adjective often stands alone, as in "I am well"--I am feeling fine. Or it can pair rather dependently with a verb. Like Jesus asking the disciple, Do you want to be made well?

And speaking of Jesus. I can't wait for the day in Heaven where you, my pride and joy, my healthy, forever bedimpled sweetie pie who lives only to smile and giggle, to point at tractors and garbage trucks, wake up cheerful and go to bed in a tickled state of delirious from all the fun you've had with your sister and the dogs next-door--I cannot wait for that day, sweeter than all the others, when you will meet that merciful Lord Jesus who made you, who was there as you were knit together inside of me, when He will use the adjective in a way that will rival all other uses.

Well done, my good and faithful servant.


Love, Mama