To my dear Jonah

It’s your third birthday tomorrow. You’re only 3 years old, but it feels like you’ve always been with me – isn’t that funny? The boy who made me a mummy. The boy who helped me learn how to be a mummy. I’ve made quite a few mistakes, but you always forgive me and love me. And I love you back, so much.

Right now, we are each other’s world. You share my blood type, my air sign, and my love of pumpkins. I feel like you get me (except when you throw yourself on the floor at Tesco, yep, not then). Yet, you bring about such mixed feelings in me. I love seeing you grow, but it’s happening so fast. Each year that passes it feels like I’m saying goodbye to one little boy, and meeting another.

You’re inquisitive, fun, nature and dirt loving; a definite tinkerer. An innate silly billy. You don’t like listening to instructions and you’re somewhat of a free spirit. You don’t always want to take part and would rather be doing your own thing a fair bit. I hope that your inability to do what we ask is an indictor of a strong mind, able to take on the world in the future.

You have a knack for making up your own words and stringing them into sentences – “giggy dan“, “aye gagoo audi“, “beeboo ninin“?

Hunting pumpkins

You’ve had challenges in this past year – you were referred for speech therapy at 2 years old. Your first session is in a week. But I’m so proud of how far you’ve come in the past year. You’re using 2 and 3 word sentences more, you’ve started to ask and answer questions, and your understanding of what we say to you is improving, even if you can’t communicate it back yet. This morning, you surprised me by replying that red is your favourite colour and strawberries are your favourite food.

Last year we welcomed Cara into our lives. I’m so proud of how you’ve slipped into the big brother role. You love your little sister dearly. You even want to wake her when she’s asleep, to be with her all the time, “baaaby!”.

I adore how much you dote on your dad. You light up when he gets home from work. He is the one who spins you, while your mop of hair flies around the room, until you collapse into a pile of giggles.

Your Uncle Nick shares your love for getting mucky in piles of earth, digging, fish ponds, and trees. Grandma Kooki and Grandma Irene are always here with apples and kisses.

Best friends

It’s safe to say that Harriet is your best friend. You’ve gone from bumps, to babies, to toddlers together, spending hours playing while your mummies chat and exchange wisdom.

In the week, we enjoy trips to playgroups, gymnastics, visiting grandmas, the duckpond, and the charity shop (one of your favourite places to rummage for toys).

So, here are some of the standout things about you, almost 3 year old Jonah. You change so quickly, but I hope this helps you to remember these days.

Trains are your thing

You would rather make train noises than talk, and that’s okay. Although we do encourage your speech, we love your “ding-ding-ding” and “vroooooom”.

At York Railway Museum

We spend our days building trains, reading about trains, and watching trains on TV. And of course we enjoy a yearly visit to York Railway Museum.

So affectionate

You’re the softest little boy I know.

Jonah and bump

Cuddles, kisses, and stroking get you through your day. And you give it away freely.

You love music

Your favourite right now is Claude Debussy’s Clair de Lune. You cried the first time you heard it.

You have strong female role models

But you’re a “proper little boy”.

Your favourite Thomas character is Mavis the quarry diesel, and you love Lady Donna the ambulance from Road Rangers.

Yet, in a (probably stereotypically) masculine way, you love getting mucky, don’t care if you get wet socks, and live for construction sites and vehicles.

I feel like a smart mama – because of you I know all about train tenders, backhoes, graders, and mining machines.

You’re scared of vacuum cleaners

You’re scared of the vacuum cleaner, but you think nothing of jumping into a bin lorry with the bin men and asking for a drive.

Jonah and the bin lorry

What a kid!

In the next year, we hope you enjoy starting school nursery, but I’d also like you to enjoy your freedom before you start primary school. We know your speech and language skills will continue to improve. And I can’t wait to see the train tracks you’ll build. I’m so excited for our next year together, we have lots to look forward to. I’m so proud to be your mummy. Enjoy your third birthday, Jonah!

Lots of love, from mummy.


  1. I wish I would’ve written birthday letters to my son every year. I guess I could start although he is already turning seven. I regret not journaling his speech struggles.

  2. ooo this is so touching. Thank you for sharing this with us! Have fun tomorrow. Happy birthday <3

  3. Happy 3rd birthday! I am with you, it feels like my kids have always been a part of my life.

  4. Oh how I loved reading this letter to your son! It made me reflect on all those little things I remember of love about each one of my kids over the years.

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