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I wanted to write this post to our 4th child, because tonight I was talking to my friend, Hillary, and she said “I was thinking just a little bit ago about all these grand plans I had for summer fun…  and now summer is over.  It makes me sad.”   To which I replied… “ugh… agreed. Oh- and poor Allie- she’s just along for this crazy ride.  I hope she loves it.” 

dear 4th child

Dear 4th child,

You are three years old now – an age of adventure!   An age of discovery!   I’m sorry that you aren’t getting the same experiences as your older brothers, but oh… you just wait!  Yes, our lives have been so crazy busy and you have kind of just held on for dear life.  I promise it will make you a more easy-going person in the future.    When Jack, your oldest brother, was born and it was only him, our days were much different than they are now that there are four of you!

We would go to the park and take a ruler and a sheet of paper.  He would measure rocks and sticks and then chart them on his paper.  We would gather leaves, too.  When we got home, we would make a larger chart of his mini chart and talk about inches vs. yards.   We would take our leaves and iron them onto wax paper with melted crayons (to get the leaves to stick) and make a beautiful window hanging!   We would  take the left-over leaves and glue them to paper, labeling them.

You do the same thing, sweet girl, but you have 3 people helping you.  You don’t get that “just mommy time” like your brothers did, but you don’t seem to mind.   You love the attention that you get when you sing us your songs or when you roar like a dinosaur!

Your oldest brother would sleep every night, soundly in his crib, waking up when he was rested in the morning.  I would hold him for an hour every morning and just snuggle him until he was up enough to play.

You wake up in the morning, ready to PLAY.  You have three friends awake and ready to see you.  They greet you in the morning like kids running into Disney World for the first time!   I used to tell them to “go in quietly, she is just waking up” but I’ve given up on that & you don’t seem to mind.  They run to greet you in the morning and they want to be the last ones to kiss you goodnight.

(Clearly they have done this since you were brand new… every morning) 

Your life looks more like this:

We go to the park, with your 3 big brothers (ages 5, 7 & 8) but now, instead of me giving you rulers and papers, the four of you get words… “Off you go!  Explore the playground & have fun! Save me some great rocks for me!”   You usually come back, after 10 minutes, ready to show me all that you have found.   You certainly are more adventurous than your brothers ever were!  What a gift that I didn’t know you would get (so unlike your mom!)

4th child

We still go on long bike rides, where you sit in the back seat while I drive along.  However… instead of singing to you & telling you silly stories, you get to hear “Come on, guys…. are you good?  Mic?  Do you see Ethan?   Does anyone need water?    Jack?  Why did you stop?  Beau, did you fall?  Do you need help?  Ethan, why are you walking the bike up the hill?   Do you need me to help you?  Mic?  Allie’s shoe fell off again- can you just keep it in your pocket?”    (You will soon learn that Daddy’s pockets can hold EVERYTHING!)    You don’t seem to mind, because you sing me songs and tell me about everything that you see.   

allie b

The truth is, Allie…  your life may be different.  You might have to catch a rest wherever you can. You might run from school to school and store to store with me.   We might not have quite as much one-on-one time as I did with your brothers.    It just isn’t possible right now, but you are so happy that you don’t even notice (well- and we do have those 3 hours in the morning when everyone is at school except us).

We might not go on all-day adventures just because we can, but you are pretty lucky.   You have 3 big brothers that love you more than I ever knew could be possible.    You have a dad that would do anything that you asked, even if it means carrying you on his shoulders for a 3 mile hike, because the tiny boo-boo on your foot hurts.  You have a big brother, Jack, who thinks your are “the most beautiful baby in the world!”  You have a brother, Beau, who will treat you like a princess until you are 80 & he is 84.  You have a brother, Ethan, who will carry you around the house, even though you are just about the same size as him now.  Oh- and you have a mom that thinks the sun rises & sets for you, my sweet girl.   You are so loved.

You have brought a joy into our home that we didn’t even realize we didn’t have.  You complete our family puzzle!   

allie & becky
You are going to be easy-going and fun. You are going to be generous. You are going to be a “Don’t sweat the small things” type of girl, like your mom, because you kind of have to be.   You are going to be smart, because you have 3 brothers and two parents that want to read to you all day long, because your love of books is so contagious!  You are going to be funny, because you have funny brothers and it is pretty hard not to laugh at them all day long.   You are going to be witty because you already show a little spunk & I can see it in your smile.  Oh- and you are going to be STRONG inside & out (and you already are).

You are going to make those three boys grow up to be great husbands, because they are growing up with a little sister and they will learn a lot from you.  You have a big role to fill, dear four child.

You are one lucky girl… loved, so fiercely, more than anyone I know.♥

You are going to be amazing.

dear 4th child



Ps- If you liked this, I would like to invite you to join my FREE 7-day email series on spending one-on-one time with your children. It is a journey that we will take together to create a deeper bond & connection with our kids. It starts with this free calendar:
A close up of a calendar on a white background.

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Hi there!

I’m Becky, a former elementary school teacher turned certified child development therapist and blogger. I work at home with my husband and together we are raising (and partially homeschooling) our four children in the Carolinas. I love diet coke, ice cream, and spending time with my family.

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  1. Thank you so much for posting this 🙂 I really want a fourth but my husband struggles with not being able to give them enough time or have them enjoy the same experiences as our first three. Already the third in our family sounds like the fourth in yours. This gives me a renewed hope that it will all work out 🙂

    1. Yes- our third was that way, too… it just got worse, but I think that they are better because of it, you know what I mean? 🙂

  2. What an amazing post Becky! It’s so heartfelt. I’m sure when your little one is older and reads it she’s going to feel amazing! I can totally relate. I have 3 boys and I love them unconditionally! I always feel that that he doesn’t get enough of me like my other two boys did. I absolutely loved reading your post hugs :).

    1. Yes!! That’s how I feel, too. Thank you for leaving this. 🙂

  3. This was such a wonderful read. Thank you for posting! I have four boys and my fifth is a girl. I can relate to just about everything you said. And my heart smiled while reading the part about how much her brothers love her. My third son has a special bond…he treats her like a princess too and will forever, no doubt.

  4. We are expecting our fourth child this fall, with our oldest just turning 4 in September. My life at home is busy, busy, busy, but I try to do just that…stay home while we can before all the activities, sports, etc start to make life even busier!
    I read to my 1st so often…you know we had the whole “scheduled story times before every nap, etc from before he was 6 months old” thing going on. When my 2nd was born that went out the window! I often feel so bad about that, but I try to remind myself that they are both such different little people, and everything is turning out the way it was meant to be. ?

  5. Thank you for writing this post! I also have three boys and a baby girl. I also worry about spending enough time with the baby, but you make some excellent points. May God bless you.

  6. Very true, but remember she’ll get that one-on-one time in high school when the other three are grown! It’ll come back around.

  7. Thank you for a beautiful touching post ! Sounds so much like us , 3 girls and then a boy 😉

    1. Oh yay!! I’m glad that you enjoyed it. It is a fun combination, isn’t it?

      1. yeah sure 🙂 just wait till they are same age as ours : 21 17 14 and 11 so much fun lol

  8. I loved reading this! I’m a Mom of 4 too. My first 2 are boys and then I have 2 girls, ages are 7,6,4 and 2. I often feel bad for my girls because I know that they haven’t experienced as much as the boys. Mommy guilt is a terrible thing, no matter what you do, you’ll always feel guilty for something. I do think though, that the best gift I have given my kids are their siblings. They have such fun together and the love just overflows… Life is chaotic, interesting and full of love. I wouldn’t have it any other way 🙂

    1. I love your comment: Life is chaotic, interesting and full of love. SO TRUE!!

  9. You sound like you’re writing about my family, I have your also. Jack, Austin, Ethan and Ellise. Similar ages too.
    We are in Ireland, but the scenarios are just the same!! Get in, get out…it’s busy, but fun!!
    Ellise is our fourth and last after three boys, she knows she’s on a great adventure having three busy big brothers. It’s all good!!
    First article/blog/post in a very long time I could relate to whole heartedly xx

    1. Well… we’re Irish. 😉 (I want to visit Ireland so much!!!!)
      Thanks for commenting!!!

  10. I have 3 boys and my last was a girl. I love this. So true. Our girl is our world. All of us. I never could’ve pictured such a perfect family. It’s chaos and crazy but I love it.

  11. You forgot to mention “lucky”, because you get to stay home with her instead of having to work endless hours. I wish I had that kind of time with my only child! Your little one is one lucky girl!


  13. My number four graduated last year. His siblings were 6,10 and 12 when he was born. Not a moment was he ever lonely, not a moment not adored. His older brothers came home from college just to spend time with him. They still call him often to see how he is or to share stories. His sister moved back home while he was in high school, in part so he wouldn’t be alone. He’ll be man of honor in her wedding this year… standing up for her. I remember when I was pregnant with him, worrying about how whether he’d be lost in our busy shuffle of homeschool and life, whether he’d get enough time and attention, but I soon learned that he would become a central part of all our lives. We all simply banded together to help him grow up. We were all richer for having him there, he was never lost.

  14. Thank you so much for this post. We just welcomed our number 4 in April. She has three older brothers (5, 4, 2.5) which sounds like your family in terms of age differences. While we are just beginning our adventures as a family of 4, I hope our sweet girl knows just how much her brothers love her already. At just 10 weeks she already has her three big brother and her daddy wrapped around her tiny little finger. Oh my sweet girl, get ready for a wild ride!! Thank you again!