SATS And Snails

Dear Noah (My Beautiful Boy),

The sun has been shining lately and there have been blossoms on the trees. The world has started to look so beautiful after a long winter. This morning after a splash of rain, a cool release from the heat over the weekend, Ellenah and I walked back from the school run without you. We walked quite slowly. Ellenah because she is small and wanted to look at the snails which were on the move. Me because like every week day morning, I miss you. I especially missed you today. I missed you because while Ellenah crouched down low, taking all of the time in the world to look at the snail which I held in the palm of my hand for her, it hurt my heart that you were not there. You would have loved that snail. You would have made up a story about it. You would have wanted to keep it. You would have said it was cute. You would have been so intrigued by where it lives, its family…its life so far and where it is going.

And I thought to myself about this moment.

This moment which wasn’t dictated by a clock, elsewhere’s to be… we had time as we crouched down in the rain with the world passing us by.

Moments like that are few and far between with you right now. Our moments are scheduled, organised and not quite so raw.

I have to steal those moments with you. Like at the weekend, on the bridge in our garden. The sun beat down on us and you sat on my knee like you did when you were much smaller. And my heart felt warm. And you will never know how much those few minutes of perfection meant to me.

SATS And Snails

Sometimes I hate myself when I ask you for ‘two minutes’ until I can read to you or for you to ‘wait until after dinner’ when you ask to build lego with me. I know that you want those moments with me too and I know that you hate waiting for them as much as I do. I hope you know that I am trying my best to be everything that you could ever want or need from a mother. I hope you know that when I ask you to ‘please wait’… that doesn’t mean that my love for you is paused.

Noah, isn’t everything so busy all of the time? Do you remember when we walked into the hills of the woods that time and as we stood on that bank and looked out upon tree tops, wasn’t it lovely? Do you remember what we did? When I said ‘Let’s think of all of the busy in our heads, all of the things we need to do, all of the things that worry us, bother us… let’s put it all in a ball in our stomach’s and shout our loudest until it’s gone!!!’ And we did. Do you remember how much we laughed, even though our eyes had tears in… It made us feel much better didn’t it?! Shall we do that again this weekend? Will you come with me?

Noah, I know that you feel nervous right now. Next week you have your very first SATS at school. Each day is taking a little chunk out of you and a little piece of your spirit. I can feel it! I’ve never seen you sweat anything before. I’ve never seen you try and rise to pressure. You have never needed to. You have always been so confident in the fact that you are good enough… because you most definitely are! Sometimes when I catch a glimpse of you, deep in thought… I can almost see you treading water, trying to keep going and all with a smile on your face. I can see you trying to figure out what you are feeling and why you feel strange about a little test. A test that doesn’t say anything about you and one that certainly doesn’t define you.

Noah, you know how special you are, right? You know that you are such a wonderful little boy? Do you know how you make people feel when you smile at them? Do you know how much that matters?

Noah, Do you know that I don’t care what a piece of paper with some numbers on tries to tell me about you?

I don’t care because you make the world better. You make it better with your beautiful eyes and the way that you see the world around you. You make it better with your laugh and ability to make others around you laugh and feel joy. You make it better because you see the good in everyone and you say such heartfelt things that make people feel good about themselves.

You are love, courage, enthusiasm, confidence and good.

You are happiness.

And you are small. And I am your Mother. And in this life, you will know everything that you are meant to and need to.

You will know that the sun will rise and the sun will set and everything in between is all that you make it. And, it is beautiful.

And you will know that your best is always good enough.

And you will know that ‘I Love You’, no matter what!

-Mama x

SATS And Snails

 

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First Love Dear Noah,

A couple of afternoons ago, on a particularly hot day, you sat on the sofa, clammy and done with it all. In a bid to wind the day down, we sat just across from each other and started to talk. The conversation took a turn and you found yourself talking about the girl in your school, the girl that your six and a half year old self is ‘in love with’. I watched as your eyes lit up when you spoke about her, I can tell that you think she is beautiful and so funny. You have told me that to you, she is perfect.

And I smiled… at the wrong time.

To me, I captured a glimpse of the boyfriend, husband and man that I think that you will some day become. Sensitive, loving and warm. I drifted off, just for a few seconds…almost celebrating how wonderful and ever so sweet you are.

First Love

You caught me!

To you, my smile and dopey eyes made you feel silly. You probably thought that I wasn’t listening. Like your feelings about your unrequited love didn’t matter, like they matter to you.

And then, you didn’t want to talk about ‘her’ any more… and you started to cry.

I scooped you up in my arms, a little ball of sobs, sweat and emotion. We stayed like that for a while and then little by little, you started to unravel. You buried your face into my neck, put your arms around me and clasped hold of me tightly.

Overwhelmed and needing air, eventually you looked up at me and I kissed your forehead and asked you what was wrong.

You told me how life feels for you when she is around. One minute you are racing your friends, playing football or playing make believe but as soon as you see her, you get nerves in your stomach and words don’t come out of your mouth. You tell me that you try not to stare but she is lovely. AND, the other boys in your class just want to play football or The Army. It makes you feel strange.

Noah, I don’t like to think that you have your first crush/love at the age of six and a half years old. I want you to be little first, a child.

I’m not ready for a girl who isn’t me, to have such a big part of your heart.. or to potentially hurt it. The thought of that breaks mine a little. My job is to protect you, your feelings… and especially your beautiful heart!

BUT…

What you feel is important and you are not silly. I would hate to think that I ever made you feel that way. The truth is, this is all new to me. I thought I had more time… but we’ll figure it all out together. You can talk to me, I will listen…I will be here for you.

But first…

Please understand that occasionally, I may look like I’m ready to burst with pride. Please understand that this is because I am actually about to.

Please understand that I am glad that I am raising you to treat girls with respect, whether that is the girls in your school, your Aunties, Nan or Me… and to see you be so gentle, sweet and kind-hearted… it will do things to my heart as your mother. It gives me the nod that I’ve put you on the right path somewhere along our journey.

Please know that I pray that in many years to come, when the time is right, you will love someone who truly deserves you.

Please understand that I will worry about this. I will worry about you.

Please know that I am so glad that you have been around true love, pure and good. Please understand how much I hope you can recognise this for yourself in the future because it will matter to who, how and why you love…and how you love yourself.

I will worry about this too.

Please understand that right now, I wish that you would rather be playing with Lego or digging for hidden treasure in the garden and this is difficult for me to comprehend.

Please understand that I hope that you will remain this chivalrous throughout life… even though, you started young so some days it may feel like effort.

Please know that one day, when you are an adult or just big enough to open doors for a lady, you must… even though not all of them will want or expect you to. I expect this from you though, which is why I want you to take your time to get there. You must not feel lesser for feeling as you do right now, but don’t rush to grow up where you can help it.

Please know that as much as I love you, I will not love every part of you growing up. To me, it will feel like you are growing away. Some days I will think that this part of your life is the cutest, and I will hang off of these beautiful little things that you say and other days, it will feel hard at the speed you are going and I will want to hit pause.

First Love

Noah, please know that I love you, everything about you. I love your dirty, mischievous laugh and that you push your boundaries, it complements the sensitive, idealist and romantic side to your personality just perfectly. And as much as it breaks me sometimes to see you cry (especially over a girl at six and a half years old…or whatever age that happens), it heals me when I remind myself that you can ‘feel’ and that makes it all okay. ‘Okay’ because over the years, those feelings and everything that you go through, will help you to better understand yourself.

So one day, in many years to come when I can comprehend ‘letting you go’ and you have this lovely family of your own (the one that you have imagined and like to talk about, the one that is a lot like ours- If that is what you still want for yourself of course!)… I know that they will have a grown, confident man, who has feelings and understands himself and he will love them with everything that he is…

And when you get there, I will show you this letter and no doubt, you will smile… And I will cry!

All Of My Love Sweetpea,
Mummy xxx

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Dear Ellenah,

I’m not starting this letter to you at all well. You my darling are turning four tomorrow and before I have even managed the start of this letter, I already have a tear on my cheek. I can’t believe how quickly this day has come around. You have been waiting for this day… one that in your eyes, will make you ‘big, big, big!’

I know it is selfish but, I don’t want you to be ‘big, big, big!’… I have truly cherished you this size, the size you are right now… with your bright, blonde hair and blue eyes. You look like an angel and despite the fact that can have an extremely quick temper, sharp wit and stong mind… You really are truly sweet. So fresh and so pure. I love you when you’re this big and I know that people say, ‘the older your children get, the more you fall in love with them!’… that just can’t be possible. My heart will practically pop if I try and squeeze any more love for you in.

If I could pause this moment, this ‘you’ for a tiny while longer, I really would. Just to get more hugs, kisses, songs and love from you…’when you were three’.

Ellenah from Maria Noell

We have been through so much together this year and we have become closer and closer. I have watched you change so much in front of my eyes and that is such a beautiful transition to be a part of. Last year was a big deal because you were reaching milestones…and some were questioned. We were unsure if you were colour blind and your speech wasn’t where some people thought it should be. For these reasons, you were frustrated often and it made you sad sometimes.  This year, you have really come in to your own. You live life in plenty of colour, ones that you certainly recognise and now, you talk well. Some would say maybe too much and too often, haha. Not me though, I love to listen to you tell me little stories, involve me in your games and sing to me. When you sing to me, that is just the best.

I have been so blessed to have the pleasure of seeing all of the wonderful things you can and do, do every single day. You make me so very proud of you. A few days ago, I watched you copy the words on your christmas list with such care and attention to detail and it blew my mind. The simple things that you do every day…they really are such big things to me. Things I won’t forget.

I can hear Daddy getting you ready for bed right now. He has just said, ‘Ellenah, when you wake up in the morning, you are going to be four years old!’… It’s a tough one to hear. You are growing further away from being my baby girl and in to a little girl who knows right from wrong and you are one step closer to realising just how incredible you are. I have just had my last cuddle with you as my three year old daughter and it was like a stab to the heart. I cradled you in my arms and you reached your hand up to stroke my cheek…just like when you were a tiny baby in my arms. We looked at each other and I started to cry one more time. I don’t for one second think that you understood why but you stuck out your tiny, soft little finger and wiped my tears away anyway… and you smiled at me. And, because I’m an emotional mess right now… all I can bring myself to think in my heart and out loud is this….

‘I just love you so much Ellenah! From that first moment I set eyes on you, I have loved you and there has not been a day that goes past that my love for you has faltered in any way. You are my daughter and as each year goes by, I understand fully the impact that has on me. I have a best girl for life. I have a girl to protect and raise so that she will become a good woman someday. And, as much as that is a strange thought…because I can’t quite handle the fact that you are turning just four tomorrow. We have got some wonderful memories to make together, us girls. I have a daughter that I will one day pick a wedding dress with, talk over adventures with while staring at beautiful photographs that she has taken and I will see her achieve everything that she sets her mind to in life. Because Ellenah, my sweetheart… you are unstoppable!’

And when you are older, I will turn to you and say, ‘Ellenah, you always have been since you were a little girl!’ – I hope this year has taught you that much about yourself as it has taught me about you.

‘I hope you always see life the way that you do, through innocent eyes, hope and joy… and I insist that whenever you struggle to see yourself for whatever reason, you try and see ‘you’ through my eyes…because then you will always find love for yourself, belief in yourself and you will always be happy. And if all else fails, you will always have me, your mama…. and I will love you, believe in you and be happy with who you are inside, enough for the both of us’

I hope tomorrow is everything that you have been waiting for sweetpea. I hope your fourth birthday is as perfect as you are.

I love you so much, more than words could possibly describe,

from

Your Mama

xxx

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Noah's 6th Birthday Eve

Dear Noah,


How am I the mother of a very nearly six year old boy? When I first held you in my arms and looked down on your perfect little face for the first time, six years ago, this moment felt so very far away. I felt like the parents of six year old children were refined, not very much like me at all. The parents of six year old children enjoyed a glass of red in the evenings and they knew which cheeses they liked most. Parents of six year old children are so very mature, well travelled and can probably speak a few languages by this point in their parenting journey.


Well my Darling, that is not who you have as a mummy. This mummy enjoys splitting a smoothie with you while we appreciate a good babybel together and seeing what we can make out of the wax. We’ve holidayed…sure but we aren’t what you would call well-travelled…not yet my boy! We adventure though, we explore… and nothing beats watching you lead the way with a trusty stick. 


We are simple. And watching you enjoy and appreciate the little things that life can offer you if you just take notice is one of the things that I have enjoyed most about you in this past year. You are learning what compassion really means and as much as you push boundaries (which by the way, you absolutely should be!) you have a good moral compass. You are a good person. Smart, kind-hearted and forever my little ray of sunshine.


Everybody loves you.


You are interested in the world. Interested in life and I hope that as you grow, older and up…you forever have this zest for life and willing to live life with abundance. You have spirit and charisma and I like it that you have something to say for yourself.


You question me, challenge me and you teach me. You teach me about life through your eyes. I am very grateful to you for that. For you. For your time.


You are beautiful. So very beautiful.


This year, you have achieved such wonderful things. You won your very first medal in gymnastics. You earned it. You are flying at school and show up every day with energy and a smile for all.


You are happy.


You make me unbelievably happy.


You remind me how blessed I am every day when you kiss me on the forehead and say ‘Good Morning Mama…I Love You’… Oh, sweetheart, I love you too, every single second of every single day until forever and just so much more than you will ever know.


I can’t believe that I have already been lucky enough to love you with all of my heart for six years and just so much longer. Before I met you, you had my heart… and that love grows every day… it gets bigger and bigger. Some days I feel like I could burst!


I hope you have the happiest birthday son. I hope you it is as special to you as you are to me. May your dreams come true and you spend the day surrounded by the ones who love you the most.


The world is always brighter and better to me because you are in it and I can’t wait to see what ‘ The Year That You Are Six’ will bring.

Too Much Love, Mummy x

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To My Dearest Little Ellenah,


It is the night before the birthday at which you will turn three years old. Very much like the past year, today has been colourful. Today you have shown me every mood, thought and feeling that you possibly could. From having to leave your ballet class halfway through because you were feeling a touch moody, the regret you felt hallway down the road because you wanted to ‘go back ooh dancing ooh join in’, the speed in which you offered to pick up a bag that I had dropped, offering me your last sweetie, the slight sobs because you were feeling tired and your ‘legs go a-bed’, the sweet smile on your face when you were catching some 3-o-clock, forty minute zzzzz’s, the rage that you demonstrated when you didn’t want to leave Nanny’s house and the whole-hearted face squeeze and snogaroo that you gave me at bedtime, surrounded by the words ‘I love you Mama’.


This year, you may have studied the term and become the definition of the ‘terrible two’s’… and ran with it… no doubt away from me… with me running behind you begging you to hold my hand and be calm and happy. But this year I have learned that behind the tantrums and scowls, there is just so much more to you Ellenah. 

Ellenah's 3rd Birthday Eve


Little One, sometimes you don’t show the people around you, even the ones who love you, just how amazing you are. You really are quite sensitive, weary and when you are being a bit bossy and kind of mouthy, you are actually quite shy. You are very much a one on one kind of girl, big crowds and strangers aren’t really your thing, in fact I think they make you quite nervous and your outlet of expression is to be a bit of a pickle. The confidence to simply be yourself will come in time, I am confident in that.


Do you know what? I don’t care! I know that you will not always feel this way. You are strong-minded and committed to what you think and feel. If you take anything with you from your childhood in to your life, I hope that it will be these qualities. You are from a family, full of confident, strong-minded and independent women, I hope that you will be one and you won’t let anybody push you around, deter you from what you think or feel or make you question the person that you are. If the journey that you are on leads you to being that kind of person (which I don’t doubt that it will) I for one will be incredibly pleased. 


You have started speaking a lot within the last couple of months. It was a bit of a slow start, what with your made-up/ french/ chinese/ american slang language that you had going on! It must have been quite frustrating for you at points. I did try my best to understand you, I promise! Now, we have some absolutely wonderful conversations. It is so nice (and I feel a little emotional thinking about it) to be able to talk to you. One day, if and when you are a mother, you will often ask yourself questions like- ‘I wonder what they will be good at, sound like, look like, be when they grow up?’… And, now I know what your voice sounds like. Some days you don’t stop talking… and I could listen to you all day long. You really are very funny! Everybody who knows you thinks so.


Sweetheart, you have grown a little bit more hair this year- it’s finally happening- Yay!


Regardless of all of the talk of tantrums and cheekiness, you are a beautiful human being. I am absolutely proud that you are mine and I have completely one hundred percent got your back. To me, you are perfect in every way. As much as I am looking forward to the day that we can laugh about all of the two year old anguish this past year has hosted, I am looking forward to being a part of each and every second of your journey, nothing makes me happier than being your Mummy. This year may have had its hard points but the good completely outshines all of it. This may sound slightly odd but it has really hit me in the past few months that I have a daughter… and how wonderful that feels. I have a little girl who I will love completely, every moment of every day. I have a princess who I have a duty to, to ensure she loves herself, inside and out and I have an obligation to protect her as well as prepare her for the times in her life that she will fall and things may hurt her or make her feel sad. I have to be her outlet to encourage her to get back up when she gets knocked down and I have to be there with my arms open wide when she has P.M.T and needs chocolate and wine when she is older. I demand myself to be that Mum to her… 

Ellenah's 3rd Birthday Eve

Happy 3rd Birthday Els Bels,

I hope your birthday is as great as you are and now that you know what a birthday is, I hope you will remember this day for the rest of your life. 

I love you so very much and just so much more than you will ever know.

From

x Mummy x

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