• Dr. Hal Kitchings

A Letter to My One Year Old Youngest Grandson

Dr. Hal Kitchings

November 4th, 2020


Dear Braven:

This is your grandpa, on your mother’s side—Big H. (I’m sure by the time you read this you will know who I am.) HAPPY BIRTHDAY! I was around when you came into this world a year ago. More than likely, I was eating pizza or drinking coffee. Please don’t tell your mother that because she was going through a lot of pain at the time. As a matter of fact, she probably would have preferred that I was in the corner of a room somewhere praying for her. Maybe I should have been, Braven? Well, I had prayed many times up to your birth date, so, I think it’s okay.

Now, back to your big day. I’ve been invited to your delayed birthday party this weekend. Your grandma, on your mother’s side—KK—and I are going to be present. (Hey really quick—your dad wanted to call her Big K to sort of go along with my name. She didn’t like it, hence why she goes by KK. Her first name is Kellie and last name is Kitchings, like mine. Just a little FYI in case you want to have some fun with her. But don’t throw your grandpa under the bus” by letting her know that little bit of information.) From what I understand, there are going to be lots of people coming to your celebration. Even during a pandemic, folks are going to attend. Braven, that’s incredible! Maybe they’re coming because of the delicious birthday cake that’s going to be there? Your mom says it’s going to be the best ever! Maybe they’re coming to see me? No. I don’t think so. I don’t even live there. They are going to come to see you. You have had an amazing first year of life. People are drawn to you. You are one special gift from God. And I know because your parents have allowed us to be an active part of it through Facetime, videos, pictures, Facebook posts, and a number of visits. We even went to the beach last summer! Remember? Maybe not. Anyway, it was fun I can only remember you eating sand one time.

Here’s what your Big H has noticed about you, so far…

  • You smile a lot of the time. Your great grandmother—my mother—did the same. Please don’t ever lose that trait. It makes others feel better about life and probably does the same for you. Keep on grinning with those cute dimples you inherited from your wonderful dad.


  • You have a positive disposition. A person’s attitude makes all the difference in the world. I’ve been around some folks with stinking attitudes. It stinks, Braven. Don’t ever be “that guy.” Keep your incredible positive disposition throughout your life. It will serve you well.

  • You like to be on the move. You may be surprised by this one because I don’t know at what point your mom will give you this to read. Meaning, I may not be “on the move” anymore. But I have been accused of being hyper most of my life. In other words, I like to be on the move, too. So, naturally, I think you are going to be a great athlete and not waste time. Now, I’m not saying I was a great athlete… well, actually, maybe I am, Braven. All you have to do is ask me. Regardless, although I have my suspicions about your athletic prowess already, because I have seen your run and throw some, you will likely have a great work ethic. That’s a wonderful trait that will carry positive results way beyond any ball days you may have.

Braven, my man, Make the most of every day. Do your best. Laugh a lot, just like you do now. Don’t worry about what you cannot control. Take God seriously but don’t take yourself too seriously. You have a rich spiritual heritage from both sides of your family. Treasure it and be forever thankful to God. Please seek to know the Lord, personally. He has unimaginable plans for you, my youngest grandson.

I just know it. Dream big for God. And dream big for your Big H. I pray weekly for you that you will be strong and courageous like Joshua. I will pray for you until the day I go to heaven, just like I do for your older cousins, Clayton and Lincoln Kitchings.

You bring me great joy, just like your mother does. I love you and look forward to year two and beyond…

I’ll see you in a few days when we eat cake together. I’m hoping your mother let’s Big H have two or three pieces. I think they decided on calling me Big because I have a big appetite and see it in my jeans/genes. By the way, the H is because my real name is Harold and I have always gone by Hal. Those names start with H, as you probably know by now. But I think it could also be because your grandma KK thinks I’m Handsome. (Don’t tell her I told you.) So, that’s why she liked the idea.  Hey, you’re sort of handsome yourself, Braven. People are always commenting on your beautiful blue eyes. This brings me to one last thought. You may not like girls when you have this letter read to you or you read it, but one day you will. Always remember that your date could be your mate—so be careful. The most important decision in your life is what you do with Jesus. The second being, who you choose to marry, if indeed it is God’s will for you. If so, choose wisely, like your mom and dad did. They done good! Don’t you think? 

Your grandpa—on your mother’s side—Big H


Until Next Time...

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