To my baby, to be read on your 18th

Katy Pearson, Sonny Jim, motherhood, What Katy Did
My heart: I love you, Sonny Jim

My sweet boy,

I’m writing this a couple of weeks before your first birthday. You’re having a little nap in your cot. Your daddy is on your Uncle Sam’s stag weekend. I have a horrid cold, which I imagine you will pick up any day now. There are a million things I should be doing, but I’m writing you this letter to open on your 18th birthday.

We’ve asked all your family and our friends to write you a letter for your first birthday – we’re going to keep them in a box. Your daddy and I figured it would be a fun thing to open in 17 years time. Well, I hope it’s fun. And interesting. And a little window in 2034 into a world long past.

I can’t imagine you at 18, my little Sonny Jim. Right now, you’ve just mastered crawling. You have one tooth (that you won’t show anyone) and the *best* giggle. You’ve just started saying mama – and you say it a lot. To everything. And everyone. And every time it makes my heart do a little squeeze (even if it’s at 3am. We need to work on your sleeping. I bet you sleep past 5.30am now though!)

Katy Pearson, Mummy and Sonny Jim, Echo newspaper, Essex
In print: How a version of this letter appeared in the Echo newspaper

I wonder what you’re like, all grown up. You were quite a shy baby, sweetheart. You liked to suss things out a bit before steaming in to games, or playing, or cuddling. But once you had a handle on the situation, you gave the best smiles. Particularly at pretty girls. You weren’t super boisterous and you LOVED a bedtime story. There were two books you liked read to you almost every single night. Dinos Love Underpants and Aliens Love Underpants.

This might sound like an odd thing to say, darling, but you saved my life. I spent so much time longing for you. SO much time. And it was SUCH a mission getting pregnant. My heart was starting to wither a bit at the edges before you came along. But from the moment you were born Sonny Jim – our little miracle – you have literally been my sunshine. Being your mum has been my biggest joy – and your first year has been the best year of my life. Even though by the time you’re reading this you’ll probably be taller than me and I probably embarrass you in the million ways that mums do to teenagers, I hope you know that you are my heart.

So what do I want to say to you, on your 18th birthday? Be happy, I suppose darling. The practicalities of helping you grow up may have muted that message over the years. I hope I don’t nag – though I’m sure you probably feel like I do. But all I have ever wanted for you, is for you to be happy. In case I don’t say it often enough, I think you are the most wonderful boy in the world and I absolutely adore you. Whatever your dreams, whoever you have grown into, know that in my eyes you are, and always will be, perfectly perfect

One last thing Sonny Jim. Be kind, baby. Always be as kind as you can. Even if sometimes it feels easier or funnier or cooler (is that still a word?) to be a bit mean, it will always make you feel rubbish afterwards (as well as them.) Oh, and give your ma a hug now and again. It will always make my day – even as a write this I miss the constant pudgy armed cuddles of your babyhood.

Anyway, you’ve got a pile of letters to open and I think your mum has babbled on enough. Happy Birthday, darling boy.

I love you baby.

Your mama x

This post first appeared in the Echo newspaper on March 17, 2017,

2 thoughts on “To my baby, to be read on your 18th

  1. What are you doing to me my friend! Absolutely beautiful & all I can do is try to stop the tears from rolling down my face. This has to be the most loveliest of ideas! To read your pain and your love, one I can truly understand, is an honour. You are a kind and beautiful Mumma and I’m so glad I was with you in our journeys as parents for the fist year of our little people’s lives. We are all so different and so are our babies. Sonny is genrle, calm, kind and loving… just how his Mumma is as a parent. Thank you for sharing this. It’s made me smile and cry, it most of all it’s given me inspiration iand reminded me we must teach our babies to be humble & kind. Sonny is a very lucky Boy to have you! You waited a long time but you were born for this special role lovely lady, my friend and I hope one that gets the chance to be at Sonnys 18th when he opens his letter xxx
    As I write this I am very starry eyed from sleep deprivation so I hope it makes sense and isn’t many spelling errors xxxx

  2. Reading this has made me feel so emotional,
    I wish I had done this as my eldest turns 18 in July & I have no idea what I can give her as a gift for her to keep & remember turning into an 18 year old young woman.
    18 years have gone so quick and I would love to read what I would of written to her back then as I was 18 myself.
    Brilliant idea..

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