13 January 2015

A number of tricky subjects....

One of my hardest challenges, as your mummy, is to fight my overwhelming urge to protect you from everything. To wrap you up in the softest wool and to keep you warm and happy as I did when you were born. 
The easiest thing is to try and protect you from experiencing sadness, rejection or disappointment and to shield you from the world, the real world. But that would be wrong. I cannot bear you being sad but, more than that, I cannot bear the thought of you living in a sterile bubble in which you don’t feel the raw emotions which will shape you as a little person. It is a battle though. A battle against my instincts. I can't fight them but I can work hard to manage them so that they don't smother you. Tell me if I smother you. I'll try to stop. Nature's not my call. Nurture is the one I can work on. This is where I can try to prepare you for the world in the best way I know how whilst giving you the space to find your own way too  
Yesterday you told me about your day at school, well, the bit that stood out for you: 

"My best friend got shut in a drawer. I told the teacher and she helped him to get out"

I told you it was good to look out for your friends.

"It is Mummy. And if one is missing you should always check the drawers"

A good life lesson.

This week also saw you asking me what the army do? I explained that they protect our country and keep us safe. "From aliens, and bears and dragons you mean Mummy?" You're not ready to hear about holy wars and the liberation of far off nations from oppressive regimes. We'll stick with bears for now. "Mummy? Bears only live in hot countries, right? It's cold here isn't it?" It's ok sweetie, there are no bears here....aside from the friendly one from Peru that is....

And tonight, my biggest parenting challenge to date. "Mummy, you won't ever die, will you?" Help! Caught off guard, I couldn't speak. You saw my panic. You read my facial expression. The edges of your mouth turned down. The tears started rolling. I spluttered some incoherent words about everyone dying one day and moved on as fast as I could. You were sobbing. Too late. Through the sobs, "I don't want you to die Mummy." What do I do? What do I do? "MUMMIES NEVER DIE!" I blurted. Ahhh, calm. That went well. Another day maybe? We've got loads of time.
My crazy-haired baby

Night night baby. I love you.

"Somewhere over the rainbow, blue birds fly 
Birds fly over the rainbow 
Why then, oh why can't I?"
 ~ Judy Garland (1939)

3 January 2015

Happy New Year ~ 2015

When you came along I began to experience everything again. Yet for the first time. Through your eyes. Through your questions:

"Mummy, how does the sugar factory make sugar?"

"Mummy, is Rudolph's nose bright to light the way so Father Christmas doesn't crash the sleigh and drop all the children's presents?"

"Mummy, when I was a baby, how did I tell you if I was cross?" 

We were listening to Simon & Garfunkel in the car today. You laughed "A person can't be an island, can they Mummy?" 
I try to impartially explain the world to you in a way you will understand. You have so much to learn. You missed going to "big school" in September because you were born in October. I hated your disappointment when your friends went up but now I see you, the oldest in playgroup. Helping the new "little ones". Looking after them. Showing them the way and taking on responsibilities. The curriculum can wait. I love watching you care and grow as a person. A brilliant little person. 
You don't ever want anyone to be disappointed. You won't ever pitch those around you against each other and won't tell anyone that they have failed or lost without rubbing their arm to comfort them and telling them that "practice makes perfect". No prejudices. You just care. I can't quite believe that my tiny little baby is now someone that I learn from every single day.
At 4 years old, with 2 imaginary friends, a keeness for all things pirate, a strong sense of empathy, an unbreakable bond with a rabbit comforter and the prettiest bright blonde curls you are a perfect mixture of your own personality and the world around you. Don't ever change baby. 
Because of you I've learnt to look after myself, to better myself, to be strong and to be your inspiration. I want you, my little girl, to be whoever you want to be and to aim for the stars. If I don't, I can't expect you to. 

Happy New Year sweetheart. I love you.

"For last year's words belong to last year's language 
And next year's words await another voice." ~ T.S.Eliot, Little Gidding (1942)