A letter to my child for Father's Day: here's what I want you to know about the life you're about to live

Persist with Guinness, it’s honestly worth it

Jake Mills
Saturday 17 June 2017 12:36
Comments
Jake is celebrating his second Father's Day with his son, Teddy
Jake is celebrating his second Father's Day with his son, Teddy

Son,

Since before you even arrived, I’ve been petrified.

I’m scared of you not liking me, scared of not being able to soothe you. I’m scared that I will hold you wrong or not be able to dress you. I’m scared of not being able to buy you the things you want.

I don’t know what skills I’ll be able to pass on and I doubt you’ll ever be able to say “my dad is bigger than yours” but the thing that scares me the most is the thought of you not knowing just how much I love you.

I don’t know all the answers, there’s a lot I have to learn, but, as you grow, there are some things I want you to know.

First of all, above anything else, as you grow up, never be scared to be yourself.

Baby sees his father for the first time with new glasses

Never change who you are for anyone. You’re you, and that is all you are meant to be. If people don’t like you, and there will be some, they don’t matter. To paraphrase Billy Joel, you’re perfect just the way you are.

Always follow your heart, son, and listen to your gut. Trust them. They know what makes you happy. Your intuition doesn’t lie.

Live your life how you want to live it, not how you’re expected to. You write the rules for your heart; be creative.

Don’t worry about making me and mum proud, we’re proud of you for telling us you’ve pooed. You’ve already won here.

There’ll be times when you wake up feeling unhappy, when getting out of bed is an effort, when you’re hurting inside or when the world seems grey and that’s okay. Although I never want you to feel that pain, those times will exist. They’ll pass though – I can absolutely promise you that.

As you grow, you’ll see people in the media telling you how you should look, how much you should weigh, how muscley you should be or what size jeans you should be fitting into.

Take no notice.

They’ll never make you happy. You’ll never be what they want you to be because they’ll always change what that is. You’ll be forever chasing somebody else’s ideas. Create your own.

Be kind. Everyone you meet will be fighting their own secret battles. What you see on the surface isn’t always what is going on inside. Choose your words carefully. How you treat others will say more about you than anything else.

Smile. It’s the most powerful tool you have.

Laugh as much as you can. Especially at stupid things. Have personal jokes, do stupid voices, pull daft faces. Be weird, be completely batshit crazy.

Believe in magic.

Admit it when you’re wrong. Say sorry when you’re to blame. Be proud of yourself.

If you’re ever in doubt, listen to Springsteen – he holds the answers.

Get to know your grandparents, they’re the best people you’ll ever know – you’ll miss them when they’re not around.

Life can be hard and at times the world can feel like a scary place. It can be easy to think kindness or love doesn’t exist, but believe me, it does. There’s more good than bad in this world. I promise.

Good news doesn’t sell papers, kindness doesn’t make the news, love doesn’t write headlines but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist.

Look for the good in every situation. It is easier to find then you might think. Look for the flowers. Look for the cards. Look for the tributes, the tears and the love. Look for the people willing to make a difference. They don’t have to be on television, they’re all around you.

Persist with Guinness, it’s honestly worth it.

Stay grounded, be grateful and always know that you are my greatest ever achievement.

I love you more than you could ever imagine.

Daddy x

PS. You’re an Evertonian. Sorry about that.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in