"This is what I'll remember" – a beautiful reminder of how little our children really need
This week it was back to school and back to reality for so many of us.
My own two children were bursting at the seams with excitement over seeing their little friends again and meeting their new teachers and hearing all about everyone's summer holidays.
However, in the midts of all this excitement I also thought back to a conversation I had only a few days ago with a friend of mine who admitted she felt scared about her little boy going back into school because they hadn't been away anywhere this summer. She simply had not had the money to, being on her own with her two little boys.
And she felt so worried he would hear all about everyone elses trips and travels and plane rides and ferry outings and feel like his summer had somehow lacked something. That he would feel like he hadn't had the amazing summer holiday everyone else had been on.
But then I asked her how they had spent their summer days and her face literally lit up talking about exploring parks and camping in the garden and having had visitors over from far away. Of taking trips to the seaside and staying up late to have movie nights and hiking and just having a lovely, relaxing time with her boys.
And I am willing to bet her summer, in the eyes of her little boys, was truly magical. It sure sounded it.
I think sometimes, as parents, we over-estimate how much it takes to keep our children happy. To entertain them. To make them feel good.
I recently came across this poem over at The Motherhood Project, and it just summed it up so beautifully. How really, the only thinkg that matters to our children is our time. And our love. Everything else is secondary. At the end of the day, this, mama, this is what your children will remember:
I don’t remember if our house was big or small or if we rented or owned.
I don’t remember if you had a fancy car, or if we had to take the bus.
I don’t remember if the house was clean and tidy or if it was covered in washing piles and scattered toys.
I don’t remember if my pram was new or second hand or if I had the latest new toy or designer clothes.
I don’t remember if you were dressed up or if your face was bare, it always looked perfect to me.
I don’t remember if you had a lot of money or whether you lived pay check to pay check.
I don’t remember if we went out every day or went on expensive holidays.
I don’t remember how sometimes you got angry or cried or had to walk out of the room to take a breath.
I don’t remember a schedule, a check list or any expectations other than just you.
What I do remember is feeling safe.
I remember your comfort and how you kept me warm.
I remember your face above me when I cried for you.
I remember you would feed me when I was hungry, or tired or in pain.
I remember your smell and how it would send me off to sleep, sometimes at 2:00am, then again at 4:00am.
I remember your smile, it was the first reason I smiled.
I remember how you played with me and got down on the ground with me, before I could get up.
I remember you taught me about love before anything else and how it was my constant.
I remember knowing it was the only thing I ever really needed and you gave that to me, I never had to work for it, I relaxed in it.
Thank you for teaching me that love has no limits, that it’s unconditional and honest.
This is what I will remember Mama.
Thank you for giving me the best memories of all.