A Letter to my Son

By Aneesah, 23 May 17

I wanted to write this so I wouldn’t forget, like after he’s no longer my only child, or my mum-brain gets progressively worse over the years…

Dearest Nu’man,

Even though you are in your Terrible Twos, life with you is not all terrible. It is an honour and a joy to witness and take part in all sorts of little changes and achievements every single day.

This awareness does not come at all times. At some point Mummy forgot to notice what new things you discovered today. Maybe Mummy thought that you are such a big boy already — unlike during your infant years when even the tiniest development was a cause for celebration!

But some weeks ago you fell ill and weren’t yourself. You napped a lot during the day, woke up crying with fever at night. Wouldn’t eat much, even. Mummy missed you so much. Alhamdulillah, you recovered and slowly returned. And it helped Mummy realise all the little things that Allah wants Mummy to be thankful for.

Like how you grin at Mummy showing all your teeth and a slight underbite,

how, at this age, you still call Mummy “Tata” and Abi “Dada“,

how you ask for water by croaking “Aaaaak“, afterwards handing over your food for Mummy to hold temporarily so you can drink from the bottle with both hands,

how “no” is a headshake, “NOOOO” is a protest using hand gestures, and “yes” to any degree is “jom”,

how you like to “read” receipts or other pieces of writing and they sound something like “liludidulele“,

how you find the strangest combination of objects around the house to play with, and leave them exactly where you want to — like Mummy’s thread picker in the cutlery tray,

how you’re immediately consoled after waking up in the morning by eating Oat Krunch cookies, then cuddling again with Mummy, usually to fall into another nap,

how you love watermelon, grapes and apples — but always spit out the apple skin (into a neat pile),

how you taught yourself to eat chicken off the bone — and can clean a drumstick better than me,

how your favourite sandwich is one with peanut butter and how you know how to get the jar and butter knife yourself,

how you ask to be lifted to the kitchen counter to “help” Mummy cook lunch, playing with the pestle and mortar and all the utensils hanging on the wall,

how you’re a pro at turning on YouTube on the computer — and projector! — then proceed to watch Dave and Ava or Little Baby Bum nursery rhymes, also knowing how to pause and switch everything off,

how your fine hair grows slowly and sparsely, to easily show the poor job Mummy does every few months playing “barber”,

how you always like applauding yourself, asking for high fives and tens, and — not always — obliging when Mummy or Abi asks for a kiss on the cheek,

how you must, must go to the other parent immediately after high-fiving / kissing one of us, in order to be fair,

how you help with hanging small pieces of laundry, protesting when the hanger faces backwards and wouldn’t hang — until Mummy says “pusingggg“, and you remember to turn it around,

how you enjoy — some might say obsess over — peeling stickers off of products, like deodorant bottles and VICKS jars,

how you enjoy fluffy blankets and like to stuff a corner into your ear to sleep,

how, in the absence of a blanket outside the house, even holding food gives comfort and you fall asleep still holding that apple core,

how Mummy and Abi learned to get used to turning around in our seats to find you fast asleep in your car seat, even after mere minutes into the drive,

how you enjoy slides on the playground, climbing up and sliding down over and over,

and mostly,

how you show us how special you are in the way you think and learn,

and how you are so close to Mummy and Abi — so attached, in fact — which makes us feel indescribably special, and blessed.

Alhamdulillah ‘ala kulli hal. May Allah bless us with the honour of seeing you grow and raising you to become an exemplary Muslim and khalifah. May our time together increase us in our faith and trust in Allah and His ever perfect plans.

Mummy Nu’man

23 May 2017


  1. Laila says:

    This makes me cry. Wish I had written the same for all my five children.

  2. Rabia Bashir says:

    Oh Aneesah!! I’ve been saving that email notification since it arrived – for a moment of peace away from my 14month old son. As he took a nap, I indulged. And I’m so happy that I did.

    Your letter made me smile, made my heart warm up, smile some more and by the end I had tears even though it wasn’t a sad letter.

    He’s awake! I’ll return to post more (in shaa Allah)

  3. Rabia Bashir says:

    I’m back!…my comment may not capture everything I thought and felt yesterday because I’ve slept since then!

    I was moved by your post because it reminded me about the ‘letters to my baby’ gift a friend gave which I haven’t yet contributed to…if anything were to happen to me what would my son think when faced with the empty envelopes? Mommy didn’t make time to write to me.

    Maybe that’s why I had tears…

    We have thousands of photos of our son, and lots of video clips. But there’s something so special, more meaningful about writing down our thoughts and observations. After all, the camera doesn’t catch everything.

    Thank you for sharing your letter, it has motivated me to write to my son before baby number two arrives in a few months time (in shaa Allah).

    p.s. Ramadhan Kareem!

    • Aneesah says:

      SubhanAllah Sister Rabia! Thank you for sharing your thoughts — I too feel the same way, writings are so different than just photos and videos, it’s somehow closer to what comes from the heart and soul. 🙂

      MashaAllah tabarakAllah for the good news as well! 😉 I am actually due in September inshaAllah! Have a beautiful Ramadan!

  4. […] loved this blog post – Letter To My Son – by Aneesah and felt inspired to write to my own son at the time. Trouble was, I had my […]

  5. […] loved this blog post – Letter To My Son – by Aneesah and felt inspired to write to my own son at the time. Trouble was, I had my […]

  6. RAbia says:

    Salaam Aneesah!

    I hope you remember me..I approached you to illustrate my children’s books a few years ago. You were embarking on a Masters (how did that go by the way?!). And you’ve had a baby in the meantime too. I’m reaching out for two reasons: one to tell you my books are done alhamdulillah! And I’d like to gift you a set to enjoy with your kids. And two, to tell you that this post inspired me to write little and often ‘letters to my children’…!

    Please email me your details of where to send the books if you’re happy to receive them.

    Love and duas


    • Aneesah says:

      Waalaikumsalaam warahmatullah Sister Rabia!

      I am so happy to hear the good news, mashaAllah congratulations on the books! Thank you for thinking of me, that’s so generous of you.

      I will send you an email with my details inshaAllah.

      Please forgive me for the delay in responding, somehow I overlooked comments on the blog and they weren’t arriving into my Inbox.

      May Allah continue to bless you and grant you success.

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