A Letter To My 8 Year Old


Dear 8-year-old son,

I feel like you should still be age 4. My mom always told me that each age would go would go by too fast. I’m afraid that she is right about that. Age 8 has already brought many surprises. I used to think that age 2 and 3 were going to be the hardest. I’ve come to realize that every age keeps providing new challenges, but it also keeps getting better and better.

I have always had big plans for you in your life, but I love how you continue to teach me that you are your own person and my job is to give you tools to become that. I’m learning everyday that I need to be a good role model and provide a solid moral foundation for you. Your age has taught me that your eyes are wide open and you are observing life at every angle. I can no longer leave every note around the house and talk to my girlfriends about anything over the phone.

I’m learning that at age 8 you do not like to be yelled at so much. It is no longer like when you were 3 years old and I could give you orders to do this or do that. Instead, you want reasons now and you want to talk things through. I’ll be honest. This exhausts me sometimes. I don’t always want to explain myself. However, you are teaching me that it is important to stop what I am doing and take time to listen. Giving each other mutual respect is important. Having a trusting and strong relationship with you is my end goal and that happens through small opportunities throughout each day.

You are all boy. You burp and you wrestle everyday. It drives me crazy. I remind you everyday about having good manners and safety around the house, but somehow you find a way to make me laugh about it deep down inside. Your abilities surprise you sometimes and I just have to turn and look the other way. I’ll continue to remind you about manners for years to come. After all, I am your mom.

You’ve already taught me that life isn’t about how many activities that I can sign you up for. You love to be at home with dad and me as much as you like to play flag football. Family is the core of everything we do. I’m glad that you appreciate that as much as I do.

I see you trying to figure out friendships and social life everyday. I know kids on the bus can be mean and football at recess can be hard. I wish that I could be there to figure out each situation with you, but I am proud of you for troubleshooting these problems all by yourself. I’ve seen your leadership skills shine and your heart be protective towards other friends. I wish you could see it from my point of view. You are becoming an incredible boy.

I know that our relationship will continue to give and take as you naturally try to become an independent person. There will always be days you will not like my rules and guidance. However, if everything keeps going as it has been, I have a lot of hope for your future. You are an incredible boy and you steal my heart everyday.

Love, Mom


  1. What a great idea to write this blog to your son. It’s also nice to find another writer in the family! Long before the Internet or Facebook existed, I wrote letters on paper to Matt and Darren and put those letters in their baby books. They’ve never seen them, but one day they will find them—and those letters will matter to them.

    I forget which philosopher said, “An unrecorded life isn’t worth living,” but those words had a profound impact on me. I’ve kept journals my entire life, and they, too, will give my descendants insight into who I was and what I thought about things, especially about my sons. Those writings also provide perspective when I’m trying to understand myself better.

    Keep writing, Katie. You are creating a treasure for your family—and a legacy for those who come after you, those future generations we can glimpse only dimly today.

    -Cousin Kay

    P.S. My email address is all lower case, despite the fact that the software insisted that the first letter WOULD be capitalized. LOL


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