20 May 2014

To my grown up son...

A few events have happened recently to make me appreciate what I have got.
In life it is so easy to moan and I have been feeling burdened recently with my return to work, all the silly business and admin and phone calls involved in buying a house, trying to maintain a household on little time and little energy, the little man is still not sleeping through the night and we have had some very tricky, long and exhausting nights too. Let's hope its teeth! 
Plus all these bad things are happening to people who I care about and being back in the teaching climate of moaning, stress and constant fear (thanks to Mr Gove) doesn't help when you're already feeling drained.

But I have a gorgeous little boy.

In fact as I left the house the other morning, feeling very sorry for myself after a fractious night which involved the baby being awake and crying from two a.m till five a.m, an old lady fell in step with me and was admiring his smile. I wished she hadn't picked this day to converse with me as I really wasn't in the mood for small talk. She asked how old he was and what his name was. I muttered my responses hoping that my tone was off putting enough that she would stop chatting to me. 
Then she said, "I wish I could have had babies. I couldn't and my husband wouldn't consider adoption otherwise I would have had a few. You're so lucky to have him." 
Wow! It was just the wake up call I needed to stop sweating the small things and to appreciate what I have.

A few months ago I had to speak at my friends' baby blessings. They have two gorgeous twin girls who were born three months early and have spent the majority of their eight months in this world in hospital fighting for survival. My mom sent this poem for me to read out and it's so poignant and a real tear jerker.

"To My Grown-Up Son" 
by Alice E. Chase

My hands were busy through the day, 
I didn't have much time to play 
The little games you asked me to,
 I didn't have much time for you. 
I'd wash your clothes; I'd sew and cook, 
But when you'd bring your picture book 
And ask me, please, to share your fun, 
I'd say, "A little later, son." 
 I'd tuck you in all safe at night, 
And hear your prayers, 
turn out the light, 
Then tiptoe softly to the door, 
I wish I'd stayed a minute more. 
 For life is short, and years rush past, 
A little boy grows up so fast, 
No longer is he at your side, 
His precious secrets to confide. 
The picture books are put away, 
There are no children's games to play, 
No goodnight kiss, 
No prayers to hear, 
That all belongs to yesteryear. 
 My hands once busy, now lie still, 
The days are long and hard to fill, 
I wish I might go back and do, 
The little things you asked me to. 


I still can't get through this poem without crying.
It is so true.
That's why I have a messy house.
But its not always because I am playing with The Baby.
Often I am sofa surfing whilst he plays on the floor.
So this poem reminds me to make every second count.
Let's all hug our babies (big or small) a little tighter today.


  1. It was great in your talk and really good to read here still. Thanks Mel!

  2. Such a touching post on so many levels and I felt so sad too for the regret and wasted years ... But what a splendid photo that last one is!

  3. so very true and yep they bring a lump to your throat x


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