Liv’s letters

“As I’m writing this, you’re just under 7 months old, you have two teeth, the biggest, most beautiful smile and just started to crawl and explore…”

Even with all of the things I do choose to blog, and how often I post, a large majority of my life remains unblogged. 

The family

There are the things that I choose to omit because I feel like no one would care about it (I always have to ask myself if something I find interesting or funny would be interesting or funny to anyone else)

and some personal things (the sad, hurtful, and amazing) I feel would be tainted by bringing them to the masses. Even when you have a semi-public life, I think there’s a beauty in keeping some things under wraps, just to enjoy with the people who mean so much to you, or to get through the hard times on your own. At the same time, there’s also an incredible benefit of asking for advice and sharing stories with many people who have been in similar situations, so it’s really a matter of picking and choosing what you feel comfortable putting out there.

I have quite a few favorite photos that I’ve saved just for Livi, because I want her to have some things that are just for her. She has a small treasure box in her room, filled with the notes that shower guests wrote to her,

Table

our hospital wristbands and name tags (which I’ll probably add to her baby book),

Babybook3

little gifts from when she was born, and the letters I’ve been writing to her. 

I think I either got this idea from Pinterest or Kelle Hampton (<– an incredible blog if you haven’t checked it out), but the envelopes are labeled:

-For the first time we get into a real argument

-For the first day of college

-For your wedding day

-For your high school graduation

-For your 16th birthday

-For the first time a boy breaks your heart

I’d like to add a few more, but that’s all that’s there for now – I’ll keep the letters stashed away until the times come to give them to her. I’ve written three (2 recently, one while I was pregnant), handwritten in my chicken scratch, and I hope she loves reading them later on. Even for the letters that will be given to her during tougher times (like the heartbreak and argument letters), I just hope she knows how much we truly love her and always have. I’m not in a hurry to finish them, and will probably take until she’s 10 to finish them all, but I just hope she enjoys reading words that were written to her when she was much younger. 

It’s interesting to think that most of many life milestones happen before children, and after that, your children’s milestones become your own. The day I got married, waiting with my dad to walk down the aisle, I remember thinking to myself “this is the day you’ve wondered about since you were little. It’s really here.” It’s so crazy to think about Liv getting married one day. For now, she can just stay an itty baby forever 😉

When we first moved to Valdosta, I had a really hard time adjusting. I felt pretty hopeless since I couldn’t get a finance job, Tom was working so much (and about to deploy), I hadn’t made friends yet, Viesa and Bella were fighting- it was rough. In one of the care packages (tamales!) that mom and nana sent, my mom wrote me a long letter basically telling me she was proud of me and to hang in there. I remember sitting on the floor to read it and crying, because it was everything I needed to hear at that moment- I still have it. 

Any letters you think I should add? Did your parents write you notes or letters? When I worked at a summer camp over the summers, I loved seeing the lunches that had notes written inside or were decorated with stickers- so cute.

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78 Comments

  1. simi on August 7, 2012 at 11:10 am

    This is so sweet! I’ve been meaning to start on my babygirls stuff. she’s already 7 weeks and i havent started her baby book, memory book, letters, nothing… as you can imagine it’s been overwhelming with a newborn and haven’t had time to do anything! Now that I’m going back to work, I plan on starting her stuff during my lunch and downtime hehe. Also when I get a chance at home as well. My mom ALWAYS wrote me letters and gave me cards, not only for big occasions, but just because. When i was little we would write letters to each other back and forth about our feelings or whatever we wanted. I LOVED getting them from her and still have all of them, one day I plan on sitting down and read them and figure out a way to organize them in a book. I know Liv will be so happy to read your letters. You’re such a good mom! 🙂 She is going to be such an amazing person.

  2. Nikki on August 7, 2012 at 11:22 am

    Just wanted to say a word about your letter for the first time a boy breaks her heart. This may sound silly, but from personal experience, it’s important. I know most parents assume their children are going to be heterosexual, but you really can never know. It can be very hard on young adults when they feel they are going against their parents’ expectations of them; when they feel their parents’ dreams for them are based (in part) on their sexual orientation. It is hard enough out there; it can make a world of difference to have parents that are open minded and who, from the beginning, are willing to accept them for whoever they are and whoever they love. Expectations take a toll, even if we don’t know it from the beginning.

    • Fitnessista on August 7, 2012 at 12:05 pm

      All of my homosexual friends have dated a boy at one point or another so if that were the case, the letter would still work. It’s more going to be about being confident in herself and loving herself, not on the actual relationship because at this point I have no idea what that will be like. I have no expectations for liv, besides the fact that she will be kind, smart and polite. Anything else is just a wonderful surprise and we’ll be supporting her and loving her along the way.

    • Elle on August 7, 2012 at 9:04 pm

      this. exactly this. commented just to agree.

      first thing that came to mind, too, when i read the post. expectations of how a child *should* turn out can be damaging. i really enjoyed the pilot’s post about trying to raise a kind, thoughtful, etc. child. he really hit the nail on the head – the idea that you can influence character. not what they will be, but who.

  3. Coby on August 7, 2012 at 11:25 am

    Awww. This made me tear up and I don’t even have kids. My uterus hurts. 🙂

  4. Cyndi on August 7, 2012 at 12:37 pm

    My mom wrote me a letter every week the first year I was in college, away from home. I can remember being so excited to go to the mailbox and get a letter. There wasn’t email back in the day or text, or cell phones. The letters weren’t always major things some times coupons and just thinking of you stuff. How much they meant to me then, I wish I had several now, and I don’t, wasn’t a saver then and I’m not now, but my mom has been gone 11 years & sure wish I had them, wish I could hear her voice!

    • Sarah on August 8, 2012 at 10:36 pm

      My mom did something similar…she would send the “12 ” days of Christmas packages during the season, while I was away at school. Sometimes it was small–like homemade cookies or an ornament. Other times it was something hilarious like a singing snowman, socks with jingle bells, or a box of little debbie rice crispy treats in red and green 🙂 All of my friends (the whole freshman dorm!) looked forward to what was in each box…it made being away from family during my favorite parts of the year a lot less difficult! Here’s to my thoughtful, wonderful mom!

  5. Emily @ Perfection Isn't Happy on August 7, 2012 at 1:35 pm

    My mom used to put notes in my lunchbox, and my dad has written me a letter prior to every big life event (confirmation in 8th grade, graduation, wedding). They always make me cry, of course.

  6. Amy on August 7, 2012 at 2:03 pm

    I have letters from my mom from every (rare) trip she took when we were kids, and letters from both parents when I started high school. No matter what mood I’m in, those letters turn me into a sobbing mess. Easily the most valuable and cherished things I own!

  7. Christina on August 7, 2012 at 2:45 pm

    Love the idea of letters! You are such a inspiration!

  8. Amy M on August 7, 2012 at 3:30 pm

    You are such a great mommy!! Whenever me and my mom would have an argument she would always leave me a card in my room. Just to say she loves me. And she ALWAYS wrote a sweet little note on my paper towel in my lunch box. I have an amazing mom!

    • Fitnessista on August 8, 2012 at 1:16 am

      <3!

  9. Sarah Anne on August 7, 2012 at 3:39 pm

    My mother never did, but my dear, DEAR Nana did. She is from Alabama originally (My family is from Maine) and I can hear her voice whenever I read a letter from her. She used to type them out on a typewriter (she was a Journalism major at UofA Birmingham) and sign them in her pretty cursive. The one I remember most, is when my first boyfriend did indeed break my heart.

    She wrote me a long letter, about how her boyfriend, a handsome military man, cheated on her and broke her heart. Her younger sister, dating a Fraternity boy at the time, convinced her to go on a blind date with her boyfriend’s frat brother. She wasn’t excited about it…but it ended up being my Grandfather. (Pe as I call him. I couldn’t say “gram-py” so ‘pe” came out) Up until that point, I Never knew the story, as he had always joked that she found him in an igloo, or roped him at a rodeo (and that was why he had no hair ontop, he got dragged on his head 😛 )

    Letters like that, are SUCH treasures. They really really are. (thanks for reading my rambling story)

    • Sarah on August 7, 2012 at 9:07 pm

      I loved your rambling story 🙂

      • Fitnessista on August 8, 2012 at 1:12 am

        same- really loved reading it 🙂

  10. Julie on August 7, 2012 at 8:47 pm

    I love that you’re writing letters to your little girl. The notes in my baby book were so much fun to read as I got older. My most treasured letter is one I found after my Mom passed away when I was 25. When she was diagnosed with cancer she began a letter to me telling me she was proud of the woman I was becoming. She never had a chance to finish it and I didn’t find it until months after she passed away. It is one of my dearest possessions now and I pull it now and then when I need a ‘Mom’ moment.

  11. Molly on August 7, 2012 at 10:55 pm

    my mom kept a journal that she wrote in throughout my entire childhood– from birth to when i graduated from high school and left for college. She gave it to me before I left for college. It was so sweet to read through.

  12. Megan Infantino on October 16, 2012 at 8:34 am

    Such a great idea!!

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