Never Forget

"Don’t let me forget the sound of little feet on my floor. Little feet running while they delightedly waits for me to chase them. Little feet treading slowly into my room in the middle of the night when they are frightened by the thunder. Little feet squeaking on the tiles as they follow me around the house, wanting to do nothing more than whatever it is that I’m doing."

Our days are chaotic and long but quick at the same time, sometimes several days blur into one.  Months pass and I still haven’t sorted through our craft supplies like I was going to do, or pumped up the bike tyres. Sometimes it’s a struggle just to keep up with the day to day.

This afternoon, after putting some toys away, B2 accidently knocked over a huge basket of puzzle pieces, a basket I’ve been meaning to sort through for so long and now they were all over the floor, they had to be sorted!  Except I noticed something while sorting them, actually B3 noticed it.  I handed him some puzzles once they were sorted and he said to me “Mum, these are all baby puzzles” and I looked at the puzzles – they were all baby puzzles.  But these puzzles used to keep them happy.  I wish I could go back to the first time I brought the puzzles out for them to play with and see the happiness and looks on their faces when they completed it by themselves for the first time.  I know it’s etched in my memory somewhere but on the bad days, the days when they seem to press every single button, the days with so much other stress surrounding me, sometimes it’s hard to find those memories.

Do other parents do this?  Cry and just wish they could go back.

I want to hold them as newborns again but really soak it in.  I want to feel their warm bodies for the first time when they were placed on my chest for skin to skin contact.  I want to go back to that.  I want to go back and have them look at me for the first time.  I want to see first smiles, first laughs, first crawls, first steps – all the firsts, I want to see it all again.  I want to go back to that place when they were fresh and new and untouched and I was exhausted and elated and full of excitement.

Now, don’t get me wrong.  I love the stages they are at now.  B1, 11 years old and pushing the boundaries.  I love seeing him thrive and sometimes fail when he’s given extra freedom.  It’s all about learning as it is with every step of your childhood but he’s moving into that next step.  That step away from childhood and it happened so quickly.

B2 is still finding his feet in the new school year.  It’s taking him a little longer.  7 is always such a funny age and when you have younger and older brothers I guess it’s highlighted more. He’s torn at home between playing with the younger kids because sometimes he’s still “a little kid” and enjoys their games but lately he’s been getting into making comics with his older brother and I still get nervous when I hear silence coming from their bedroom but feel nothing but pride when I stick my head in and see them both drawing and working together.

B3 will be 4 in a couple of months.  He’s grown up a lot in the past year but he’s still my big boy baby.  He loves cars and our favourite game is walking through the carpark naming all of the cars.  And he does, he names them all.  His best friend is B2 and that’s what they call each other “best friend”.  I have been known to shed tears as we drop B2 off at school and B3 yells from the car “see you after school best friend”.  They get up to so much mischief together that it can be chaotic and I don’t always encourage them spending so much time together.  But, really, to have your brother as your best friend – wow – life doesn’t get any better really does it.

B4 will be 18 months old at the end of the month.  He is still very clingy and sometimes I get frustrated because I just want to do something without a baby in my arms.  I want to drink a hot cup of coffee, you know, like the Mum’s do on TV.  Smiling, happy, watching their happy children play.  But:

  1. I can’t hold a hot drink because I’m also holding a baby
  2. They don’t play nicely together.  Ever.  No really E.V.E.R.

Still, I miss them as babies, I miss their baby smell.  B1 smells like ……. boy.  His room smells like boy.  Everything smells like boy but I just want to go back 11 years when he was a couple of months old, when he was the only one, he was my everything and we’d hang out and play all day.  I want to give him one more little baby cuddle.  Let him sleep on me once more, wash and fold his little baby clothes.

In the chaos of life it’s so easy to forget.

So, tonight when the B4 wakes every 20 – 30 minutes as he often does in the middle of the night.  Rather than focus on where I’ve gone wrong and how I can get him to sleep in his own bed.  I’m going to savour every moment because it might be the last time.  Tomorrow night he might sleep.  It might be the last time I’m rocking him, patting him on the back, running my hand through his beautiful blonde hair, feeding him, or just letting him sleep holding my hand so I am going to cherish it.

My 4 beautiful boys,

Our life is chaotic, we rush through the days, sometimes I put you to bed early because I just need a moment to breathe but never doubt my love for you.  There are days and moments I fail, I don’t think you notice but I do and it eats at me.  I just want to be perfect for you boys.  Sometimes I feel I failed at giving you a “normal” family but, most of you won’t remember what it was like to have Mum and Dad living in the same house.  There are days that kills me but there are days that I am glad because you won’t remember the heartbreak it took to leave with you on that day.  A happy Mum on her own is so much better for you than an unhappy Mum with Dad.  I know you’ll see that one day.  Boys, know that Mumma loves you more than I could ever write in a blog post.  You boys are my world, my everything and let’s just freeze time and be in this moment as Mum, B1, B2, B3 and B4, in our own little bubble, just like this at these ages, just for a little while x

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