Sometimes great things can be born of great sadness.
That’s how the famous book “I Love You Forever” by Robert Munsch came to be.
If you’ve never actually read the book, it’s likely that you’ll still recognize the book’s cover.
The book was written in 1986 and went on be the fourth book on Publishers Weekly’s 2001 All-Time Bestselling Children’s list.
It has sold more than 15 million copies.
“I have yet to read this book through without crying. It says so much about the circle of life, youth, parenting, and our responsibility for our parents as we grow older,” Maria Shriver wrote in O, The Oprah Magazine.
“The message is so simple yet so profound. ‘Love You Forever’ is a great gift for anyone with a child, or even for your own parents.”
The book is about the relationship between a mother and her son and how it evolves as he ages.
Despite all his mischevious behavior and the trials a mother goes through, she unconditionally loves her son. And when the mother ages, he cares for her and shows her unconditional love, then passes that love to his own children.
As the crux of the story is a heartwarming poem that gives you all the feels:
“I’ll love you forever,
I’ll like you for always,
As long as I’m living,
My baby you’ll be.”
Munsch said the poem started out as a song he sang in honor of his the two separate babies his wife gave born two as stillborns.
“I made that up after my wife and I had two babies born dead. The song was my song to my dead babies. For a long time, I had it in my head and I couldn’t even sing it because every time I tried to sing it I cried. It was very strange having a song in my head that I couldn’t sing,” he says on his website.
One day, he got the idea that he might be able to turn it into a song.
His original publisher told him that it wasn’t really a children’s book, so he brought it to another publisher.
“One day the publisher called up and said ‘This is very strange. It is selling very well in retirement communities in Arizona. It is selling in retirement communities where kids are illegal. This is supposed to be a children’s book. What is going on?'” Munsch explains.
“Grownups are buying it for grownups!”
Now he says everyone buys it for everyone from grandparents to children.
“For someone who picks up the book, it’s their story, not mine,” Munsch said.
You can hear Munsch narrate his story in the video below.
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