This week I started a new journal for baby 'number three', his or her's official title until we know the gender. I have two journals already that I started when I found out I was pregnant each time with my girls. With my first daughter, Caitlin, I don't even know where the idea came from to write a journal (it could have been an original one!) I just felt the urge to write about the experience. I wanted to write a record of the pregnancy, the delivery, the first few months and I haven't stopped writing in it yet and she's six. I will continue to write in these journals until they are eighteen when the journals will be passed on to them as a birthday present, perhaps they would like to pick up the story of their lives where I left off.
I write in the girls' journals roughly once a month. I write about what they're doing at the moment in school and nursery, who their friends are and the activities we do as a family. I also like to write about the funny things they do or say. One entry from Caitlin's journal dated January 2010, when she was four, reads, "Today Mummy was talking about how handsome Daddy is, to which Caitlin agreed but after some thought added, "but Daddy doesn't have any hair though does he Mummy?" (She's right, he doesn't, but it makes him even more handsome) I also stick lots of photos in the journals, birthday cards, drawings, leaflets from places we've visited, even little locks of hair from when they were babies. It's also nice to take prints of their little hands and feet every now and then to see how they've grown.
What I didn't anticipate when I started the journals was how much the girls would love looking through them. On sunday morning I came downstairs to find them sprawled on the living room floor with their journals, looking at the photos and reminiscing about the things we have done, the places we used to live. They also love looking at pictures of themselves as babies. What I also didn't anticipate when I started writing them was how precious they would be to me and they become more so as my girls grow up. I don't have the best memory so for me to look back and read about the time when they were babies is just so very special. These journals are a record of my daughters' childhood and also a record of my thoughts and feelings about them as they grow up. I can express to them in their journals now, when they're little, just how much I love them and maybe one day when they're adults they will truly understand how their Mummy felt about them. I think the journals will be a very special eighteenth birthday present indeed.