Dearest Angel of Mine,
Now you are a wonderful two year old. Where have those two years gone?! It has been my amazing privilege to mother you through another year of your life and watch you blossom and grow. You have brought so much delight to my life as I have watched you daily. You have continued to love reading books, music (there must always be music) and doing some sort of arty work.
I have enjoyed watching you dance and twirl to music. Thank you for inviting me to join you on so many occasions. I hope you never stop allowing music to touch you so deeply. I hope you will always feel free to just spin with joy when a piece moves your heart.
I have enjoyed our many walks together and how much you love nature and the great outdoors. Your favourite thing to do is splash in puddles. You absolutely love puddles, and I am glad I get to splash beside you.
I am so sorry that, for a few months, you really didn’t have much of a mummy as I was so ill I couldn’t deal with you. I wish those months had been different. I missed you so much and I missed being the kind of mummy you need. In that time, however, I saw a side of you that brought tears to my eyes. Tears of joy as well as sadness. Sadness, for no child should have to watch their mummy suffer, and no child should have to cuddle their mummy and soothe her and stroke her back while she is being violently sick. But joy because the care and compassion you showed during those months as you stayed by me and brought me buckets to be sick in and took buckets to your daddy for him to clean is beyond what many adults would be able to muster in such a situation.
You truly are an amazing gift from above, a ray of sunshine that dances across my heart and warms the darkest of days. May you continue to go forth and shine brightly in this world, in this another year of your life and for every year you have left to live. I love you sweetheart.
My Sweet Baby Girl,
The other night I went out to a Christmas craft evening. This is one of the handful of times in your 21 months that I have ever left you in an evening to go to such an event. Unfortunately, it was the same night those nasty molars decided to wake you up. You were inconsolable and Daddy wasn’t good enough for you. All you wanted was your Mummy, and she wasn’t there. I was so upset to hear you had been in such a state and in such pain when I got in that I desperately wanted to go and wake you so you would know that I was home and there for you. You woke by yourself again anyway and called for me. That was it; you were my little leech for the evening. You wouldn’t stay in your own room as you wanted to make sure I was still there. I brought you into to bed with me thinking you would sleep, but you stayed wide awake holding my hand, touching my face, laying your head on mine and making sure that if I moved even an inch it wasn’t to leave you.
It was so sad, and poignant as well, because there will be a day when Mama won’t be there with you. There will be a day when you have to go this life on your own without my comfort and without my support. I wish I could be with you always to soothe away life’s pain and troubles. I wish that every time you reach out your hand for mine you would feel mine clasp yours tightly in return. I wish you could always here the words, “shh now, I’m here it’s ok.” I am sorry that one day I will have to go and leave you with a mother’s comforting embrace to blaze your trail in this world. And I am sorry that on a night when you did need me and I am still with you that I wasn’t there.
All my love to you my sweet girl.
They are everywhere these marks of you. I find them in every corner of this house. In every room is a piece of you….a book, a ball, a teddy, a toy, a shoe, clothes hung up to dry. They are to be found all over. There are of course photos of you that we have placed; photos we look at and marvel at how quickly time marches on for it doesn’t seem like it’s been a minute since you entered this world, yet here we are 17 months later.
But there are other marks of you. Ones that I may have to look a bit closer for, but there are there as well. The little stickers you stuck on various floors of the house, hand marks on the door frames, hand marks on the windows, hand marks on the dishwasher, footprints on your bedroom wall where you kick your feet as you lie in bed not wanting to give into sleep.
I could remove these marks. I could easily peel the stickers off the floor. I could go round with a cloth and wipe away all those hand marks and foot prints. But I choose not to. When I see them they make me smile. A little person lives here; the evidence can be seen. One day you will be grown up and your toys will be gone. One day you will no longer put your little hands all over every surface in the house. One day you will be gone.
So they will stay. The sticker on the floor reminds me of your joy in finding out you could stick them to more than just the piece of paper in front of you. The marks on the dishwasher, the freezer door, the washing machine, remind me of how you want so much to help and be involved.
These marks of you could be seen by many as extra work, a frustration, an inconvenience. I choose to see them as pure joy. Yes, they can stay til they get rubbed away further down the line. Make all the marks you want dear one; you are only here for a short while and I want plenty of you left around the place for when you are gone.
Recently, I have been doing a lot of soul searching, a lot of praying. There have been some areas of our relationship that could be better, areas of your behaviour that seem to have been getting progressively worse, and I had no answers as to how to fix them. There is only one thing to do in such situations and that is to pray for wisdom and understanding. I realised in these times, that my behaviour and feelings have a huge effect on you. I learned that I should first look inward to see if there is anything I need to change before expecting you to change or thinking the issues we are facing are in anyway separated from me. And as I looked inward I saw a lot of stuff that needed to be cleansed from my life, dealt with and shipped out of there. I saw a woman who was filled with resentment for the terrible pregnancy and the fact it so impeded me from bonding with you, resentment for the ill health for months after that stopped me from doing much more than feeding you and caring for your basic needs again hindering bonding, resentment for the fact that just when it looked like your daddy and me were getting a break from all the stress we had gone through from the start of our marriage and could look at reconnecting the pregnancy came and took that away.
I love you with all my heart, I truly do. There was, however, this huge wall to break down. Now that I have faced the problem and am tackling it, our days are much smoother, and that crazy behaviour you have always displayed that drove me near insanity? It’s pretty much gone 🙂 Amazing, huh? I am so so sorry it has taken me 15 months to sort myself out in the inner self. I am sorry this resentment has lived in there further blocking us from having a free and open relationship. I am sorry you have missed out on so much due to the fact I have been so ill. I am sorry that we did not get to connect while you were on the inside. I will never understand why things were how they were, but I cannot change the past. All I can do is ensure the present and future are beautiful as possible. I can leave that past hurt, frustration and resentment behind, walking through the door that leads us into a more loving, gentler way of being together.
Please forgive me for my shortcomings as a woman and as your mother. Please forgive me for the frustration I threw your way due to the fact I had not taken a long hard look inside my own heart and soul. Please forgive me.
I love you, little one. I am thankful for the gift of you in my life. I am thankful for the changes your presence has caused. I am thankful for your love for me. I am thankful for the lessons you teach me, and I will strive all my days to be a better mother for you.
All my love and sincere apologies,
Dear Miss E,
Yesterday was a special day, for yesterday we walked A Mile In Memory Of Matilda Mae to raise money for The Lullaby Trust. We travelled down from Nottinghamshire on the Friday night. You didn’t appreciate being woken up twice from your sleep, but you were such a good soul and you did ever so well. When you got woken up the second time, we were at our hotel, so that perked you up immensely. You enjoyed exploring, eating the cookies that were in the room, and you loved your really big bed. Your found it great fun that Mummy and Daddy were once again in the same room as you and you sat up chattering away excitedly for ages before lying down to sleep.
a special big bed
In the morning you woke up bright an early, full of life ready for the special day we were going to have. You decided that you needed a lot of energy for the walk and you ate a croissant, a bowl of muesli with a pot of yoghurt, a sausage, some bacon and a slice of toast! You always eat a lot for breakfast, but never that much!
waking up with a sile
stocking up on food
After breakfast, we set off to travel the remainder of the way to the Rare Breed Centre. On the way the weather was dull and rainy and Mummy prayed that it would brighten up for Matilda Mae’s special walk. It did. By the time we got to the Rare Breed Centre the rain had stopped and the sun had popped out to say hello. We walked the mile with Matilda’s family and lots of other people who had also come to support them and to raise money for The Lullaby Trust. It was a beautiful, peaceful walk with the most gorgeous carpet of bluebells standing proud and spreading their sweet fragance on earth in honour of a beautiful little girl. Halfway along the walk we got some packets of forget me not seeds. We will plant these in pots eitherside of the front door and elsewhere in the garden and when they bloom we will talk about and remember Matilda Mae.
pink and purple balloons at the start/finish line
stopping by the star
walking with lots of other people in memory of Matilda Mae
the gorgeous bluebell carpet
You won’t be forgotten Matilda Mae
Once back at the marquee, there was entertainment for children, gorgeous violin music playing and bubbles being blown into the sky for Matilda. There was also the singing of Twinkle Twinkle Little Star. You enjoyed the activities laid on by Jumping Beans and crawling on the grass. We also had a look around the centre at the animals, watched a falconry display (you were sleeping at that point) and watched some pig racing (pigs run fast!!). It was a beautiful day, but we never forgot the real reason we were there. You don’t yet understand the full significance of yesterday, but as you grow up we will remember Matilda Mae; we will talk about the impact her beautiful little life has had; we will pray for her family as we do now; we will blow bubbles for her as we do now; we will go back to the centre and do the walk again, and one day, if God chooses, you will get to experience the love of a mother for her child and the special bond that comes with it and you will fully appreciate why we chose to go on this walk and help raise money for The Lullaby Trust to help them try and find a way to stop SIDS. No mummy should ever have to be without her baby.
blowing bubbles for Matilda
bubbles floating up to heaven x
All my love,
Hello Dear One,
You should know by now that I am not the kind of parent who forces you against your will. I don’t set your bedtime…I allow you to set your own and with few exceptionssuch as teething and Wonder Weeks you have done a darn good job! I don’t force you to go to other people be they family or otherwise who would like to have a cuddle with you. I respect your wishes to remain with me if you want to and go to others when you want to and I respect your desire not to have people touching you when you don’t want or need that physical stimulus. Others may be offended and often are, especially family, but your trust in me to believe in you and protect you and respect you means more to me than appeasing people. I don’t take that forgranted.
There are a few occasions, however, when I need you to trust me in return to know what’s good for you. You see, last night you were awake from 10pm right throughcrying and screaming and playing and at 10am you were still awake. Awake, but oh so tired and grouchy. You had hardly any energy to crawl around anymore and that frustrated you greatly. I put you to bed for a nap despite your great protests because I knew it was the kindest thing I could do for you in the situation. You were not happy with me for doing what I did but you did fall asleep, and I know your body needs to rest. I know you will wake up happier and brighter and will be able to make it to bedtime like normal for having had a little sleep.
I am sorry you got cross with me. I am sorry that I put you to bed when you didn’t want to, but on this occasion, Mummy knew best what you needed and, for your sake, followed through. I hope you understand.
Hello Dearest One,
Today it has been one whole week since you went into your own room. Until then you have slept with your cot right up to our bed with the panel off to make it an extension of our bed. You let us know you were ready for your own space, so last Sunday we moved your bed into the bedroom that has been waiting for you since before you were born. Instead of a cot you are in a big girl bed. You have a cotbed, so we took all the sides off and put the mattress on the lowest bed setting. Why? Well, firstly, we want you to be free-free to make you own choice about being in your bed or not. We do not want to trap you in a prison where you must stay until we come and get your, scream for our attention or find some other way of getting out, which you are very capable of! This way, should you wake up and want to be out of bed you can slide out quite easily and play with something, and you can crawl back in if you wish as well. Secondly, for safety, we cannot be with you 24/7, and you like to climb, you have already climbed out of your cot when it was a bed extension, and that once you were ok, but next time you may not be. Next time, you may sustain injury to your head or neck from the fall. So, this way you are at a safe height to the floor with no dangerous falls to be had when unsupervised.
I wondered how you would take to your new surroundings even though you made it clear you were ready. I should have known you would be fine! You love it. You love your little bed, you love your room, you love being able to use the headboard to stand up and dance on your bed and flop back down again. You have used your spatial awareness to figure out where the mattress ends and the floor begins and you no longer get so close to the edge that part of you is dangling off. Since moving into your new room it would seem you also think you are too grown up for daytime naps! You have shunned these for a whole week in favour of a super early bedtime! You used to go to bed between 5:30-6:30pm; now you ask to go to bed between 4-4:30pm! This leaves me wandering around the house feeling a little lost til Daddy returns from work.
I am excited to support you in this latest step towards your full independence, but I miss you. I miss coming to bed and seeing your little self curled up beside my side of the bed. I miss hearing your sleepy breathing as I get ready for bed. I miss waking up to your cute smile as you lift your head off the mattress. It’s joy and sadness rolled into one. Don’t grow up too fast baby girl. Slow down a little and let me catch my breath and savour the moments before you take off again on your next adventure.
With All My Heart,