21 Oct 2011

You and I

Batik Work in Progress...child hugging pregnant mum as they picnic in a garden

To my oldest child,

This is how it was before your sibbling came along. It was just you and me all the time.

You and I walking as the sun set, 
  You and I, huddled together in bed, reading a book...
   You and I, giggling and laughing as we jump puddles together in that open field after the rain...
            You and I.. a hundred thousand beautiful memories (some with papa in it)

Then I got pregnant....it was still you and I. You were very excited,
knowing you'd soon have another companion who'd play with you. Still we spent many lovely moments together ,

     You and I walking the dog after the cool rain,
           You and I,  swimming under moonlight....................
   You and I, eating tiramisu in some Italian restaurant ......................and falling asleep together as you held my finger. 
                You and I...a hundred thousand beautiful memories (with baby in the womb)

Then late pregnancy came, and I could no longer carry you, (Doctor's orders), still you'd sit on my lap reading a book, or listening to me telling a story.  We still spent lots of time together, such as the time when  we picnicked in the garden just like in the picture.  You hugging me close, and I enjoying your sweet, tender presence.

Then baby was born, and I know I neglected you. I just didn't know how to cope with baby, household chores and work. There was also grandma who stayed with us after her operation. I just didn't know how to cope, I was in shambles, often in tears, but you were still there for me. You the tiny one, there for her overgrown sized mama. haha....

We'd still read books together, you by my side as I fed baby. But most of the time, I'd be in my darkest mood and you somewhere else in the house. But when you noticed my tears, you'd sneak in, tuck a pilllow under my arm as I fed baby, or pecked me softly on my cheek before running off.

For the first time, I spoke angry words at you, and I know you suddenly felt second best. It wasn't my intention to make you feel that way...wasn't my intention to hurt you. 
But oh...my human weaknesses..I despise that side of me. 
So for the times when I was/am a mean and a horrid mum, I ask you to smack me forgive me.

For today, I woke with a smile on my face. Memories are coming back to me...I'm thinking back to the moments when it was just you and I, you and I in that garden,  you and I falling asleep together, you and I jumping in puddles, you and I taking walks together.

I'm thinking back to the first day I carried you home and gave you a name and called you. Yes, my oldest, I love you as much as I did from the time you were conceived, as much as the time when I first held you. I love you as who you are today,  and I will always do.

p/s Now its, you, Jo and I, walkin together....you, Jo and I exploring streams together...you, Jo and I..creating beautiful memories together. xoxo......Mum.
The above was written as an honest account of what some of my days were/ are like. Also, as I walk in malls, parks, I've noticed the same thing in many mums, talking sweetly with their younger child and turning around and scolding the older one in public. I often  feel bad/sad for that older child.

I guess, we all have our own weaknesses..for we are not perfect. May we all constantly seek to learn, and to improve ourselves through our mistakes. And like I've said before somewhere in the blog..it's ok to say sorry to our own children when we hurt them. Saying "sorry" heals and soothes the wound away, and makes space for mother and child to bond and grow closer together.
(When my oldest was born, I kept an actual diary for her, where I'd write letters to her. I printed some abstracts from that diary here..Dear Nel)


Carolyn lil' dahling said...

Very beautiful painting and a touching story. I do feel the same way as you. We are human after all. I do feel guilty when I snap at my oldest too and I do ask for forgiveness from her. So I can relate to your story and I do miss the 'you and i' moments together with her so much..:)

Kiddothings said...

So beautiful and sad at the same time. It brought back memories of when it was just me and my son. Saying sorry to your children is so important and so healing. I do that whenever I haven't been in the best of my moods or when I've been screaming at them.

Martha said...

It happens ... we just need continuous reminder from each other to become better mums. :) xoxo

SocialStudiesSoubrette said...

Oh what a beautiful heartfelt post. We all have our weak moments. Hubs and I are adopting our second child and this has been one of my fears. I pray that I will be able to juggle two and show each one the love they deserve. Thanks for sharing your humanness with us <3

michiko said...

This is a beautiful post for your children and
I guess your children knew that too?
Are you keep all copy of your post in past xxx years.
Although you can make the book all your post.
Keeps it up a long as you can do it:-)

gail said...

I still feel guilt over some of the ways I treated my daughter after my son was born. Maybe I hope that all the things I do and the love I give now will lessen the bad memories. much love to you

martha said...

@SSSoubrette -praying all goes well as you adopt your second child. That child will be blessed! :)
@Michi..I don't have a copy of all unfortunately. Sadly I lost most of what I wrote in the days when it was difficult. I deleted the blog and didn't safe a copy. wish I did.

@Gail: I think it will lessen bad memories. Let me rephrase, the love you show now will replace everything else that's been. I know 1st hand. :). love you too.

Quay Po Cooks said...

In my case, my son was the only child but I knew I neglected him at some point when I was a single mum. I had to concentrate on my job to make ends meet. There are times when I was extremely stress, I am less patient with him and I knew it was wrong on my part. I do apologize to my son and I am glad he is very forgiving. We are human, we err but if we admit we err, that is good because we will always try to do better.

Shanda said...

This was so beautiful. I remember those days so well. What a wonderful letter to give to your child as he grows older.

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