A Letter to my First-Born

Dear sweet Jonah,

Last night, while you were sandwiched between Daddy and I in our full-sized (but seemingly shrinking) bed, your baby brother woke me with a few of his soft kicks. My eyes opened and immediately fell upon your beautiful face, illuminated by the moon’s light shining in the window. You were sleeping so peacefully. I reached up to push aside a strand of hair that had fallen over your eyes, and my mind began to wander.

You, my love, are so special. You made me a Mommy. You gave me the most incredible gift…the gift of a lifetime and the one I cherish most. As I lay there, wide awake, staring at your angelic face…a twinge of guilt forced its way into my thoughts. In merely two weeks, your whole world is going to be turned upside down. In twenty days or less, you will no longer be our only child. Mommy and Daddy hoped and prayed for you, and we were blessed (and continue to be blessed) beyond measure. We hoped and prayed to be able to give you brothers and sisters, and in the blink of an eye, your first (of hopefully many) siblings is on his way. While I can’t promise that this change is going to be easy, I can promise you this:

I promise to love

I will love you unconditionally, just like I have from the day you were born. I vow to love you with a love so intense that it multiplies exponentially with each passing second. My love for you will not diminish or decrease, nor will it be split in equal parts with each child we bring into this world. Your love will always be your love, and its presence will always be known.

I promise to protect

I will protect you from the monsters of this world; whether they are living under your bed, in the attic, or the unfortunate evils this world has come to know.

I promise to do my very best

I vow to be the best Mommy for you that I can be. Perhaps more importantly, I promise to acknowledge when I’m not and apologize accordingly. I am passionate, I am strong-willed, I am determined, I am a fighter…but I am not perfect and will never claim to be as such. I’m always late, I am overly sensitive, I lose my patience, and I become a grump when I am exhausted. But I promise to always give you my very best.

I promise to listen

I will not only listen to every story, every wild tale, every concern, and every sweetly sung song…I will hear you. I vow to never let you go unheard or feel as though what you are saying has no importance.

I promise to love you for you

“Comparison is the thief of joy,” they say. I promise to do my best to not compare you to your brother (and vice versa) in a negative light. I will always love you for who you are and never for a second will I wish you were different. I will not let label nor criticism tarnish your spirit, and hope that you won’t either.

I promise to always be excited to see you

The moment you entered our lives, the most favorite part of my day became any moment I spent with you. Once I went back to work, I counted down the minutes until I could see your face again and hold you in my arms. I vow to always be excited to see your face, no matter what kind of day I have had or how rough it may have been.

I promise to embrace every sticky-faced kiss and every leap into my arms as your tiny feet race toward me calling, “Mama!” One day those things will stop, and I will miss them dearly.

I promise to always have time for you

I promise to make time for every snuggle, every cuddle, every story, every “boo boo”, every block tower, and every nightmare. I promise to always have time for you and your siblings, no matter how many children our family will grow to include. I vow to never make you feel as though you are a burden. I promise not to quickly cast aside what is important to you, because you are important to me.

I promise to always remind you to say “please” and “thank you”

We’ve been using these words with you since you were born because despite what you may come to know in today’s society, manners are important. We expect you to use them no matter what company you keep. Your little brother will learn from you. Always remember that.

I promise to challenge you and push you out of your comfort zone

I promise to never be too busy to encourage you in taking the “easy way out”. Challenges are a great thing because without them your brain cannot grow. I promise to help you always keep an open mind, because there are multiple solutions to every problem you will face. Whether this be a math problem, a problem with a friend or teacher, or a problem with your siblings, a challenge only presents itself if you are able to learn from it.

I promise to keep you safe

I vow to create rules not for the sake of creating rules, but to keep you safe, healthy, and to help mold you into a respectable young man. I promise you’ll always know the purpose of the rules and requests we have in place, because a consequence teaches nothing if accompanied by lack of understanding.

Many people will come into your life as you grow…siblings, friends, and perhaps someday the person you will spend the rest of your life with. And I promise you this: No matter who enters your life, I will love you more than any of them.


49 thoughts on “A Letter to my First-Born

  1. This is so incredibly beautiful and moving. I think that is is a wonderful idea to write a letter like this to a first born child, sometimes having a sibling can bring about a lot of emotions and it is so important to let them know how loved them are.

  2. So sweet. You're clearly an amazing mommy and will do great with the two of them. I love the idea of a letter to the first to remind him (and yourself) of the special moments you enjoy together.

  3. This left me teary eyed. I wish I had wrote such a letter to my little munchkin. I guess it's not too late to write one for his 2nd birthday.

  4. YES to this. All of it. Go back to it when the days get hectic. Remind yourself that you are only human on the days all of the above don't happen. There is nothing as special as a first-born. Date him when the new one comes along. It'll be good for both of you. Praying for you all in your upcoming transition. You are blessed!

  5. Oh gosh, I'm a mess now. This is absolutely so beautiful. Please print this out and keep a simple black and white copy of this, tucked into his baby book or some other treasure for when he's older.

  6. This is a beautiful and sweet letter, and with good promises. I struggled so hard when I was pregnant with my second, wondering how I could ever love him as much as my first. The truth is that your heart just doubles in size. <3

  7. This is so beautiful, your son will cherish these words when he's old enough to read and understand them. So cute! Can't wait to hear all about the new bub!

    Katie <3

  8. This is such a gem! I'd add that "I promise to pray for you" to my list. I hope to have another baby one day soon but it's so hard to imagine right now while our first is only 2 months old. Beautiful words.

  9. this was really sweet….I remember feeling this way before I had my second child. I love that you wrote them down for him 🙂 He will cherish that when he grows up.

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