Wednesday 8 February 2017

The Night Before the Day

I cannot sleep. My beautiful little boy starts school tomorrow. I can tell he was a bit nervous because he asked to sleep with me. “I want to hug mummy and sleep” he said as I made him comfy in me bed. He’s always a bit hard to put to sleep, so I wasn’t surprised when he asked me all those questions about bones in the human body. The topic was unusual so I asked “what made you ask me about bones?”. He replied “I just wanted to know”. I spoke to him about being good at school, his matter of fact response being “I’m always a good boy, you know that”. And then it dawned on him that I will only be dropping him at the school and not ‘staying’ with him! His alarm was obvious. But he quickly settled as he would still see some of his friends and mummy would be back to pick him up early. “What if I don’t know how to study and the teacher thinks I’m silly?” I cuddled him, stroking his cheek. “Teacher won’t ask you to study. You listen to her, do as she tells, be good and you will be fine. You will learn.” I reminded him of how the head teacher had remarked that he is a confident boy, when we had visited the school. He smiled and put my hand on his eyes. Held my other hand in his small hand, just as he did since when he was a baby. I gently massaged his eyebrows. My baby was asleep. My baby – who won’t be a baby anymore – its official. I hugged him. Kissed his cheek while he slept peacefully. I tried to sleep but couldn’t.

My heart is welling up. I look forward to tomorrow morning when I will see my son dressed in his school uniform for the first time. When I will go to drop him to school. I know he will be fine but I could not close my eyes. I wished hard for his father to be with us, knowing all too well how badly he wanted to be there as well but couldn’t due to his work. And then I remembered. I remembered having done this almost 26 years ago. I remembered being alone that day, holding a tiny hand, walking a little boy to school. Taking him to his classroom for the first time and then I sat him – at the very front tiny desk – his grip at my hand stronger than before. I remembered those two beautiful little eyes looking at me through tears ready to drop. I had stroked the tuft of curly hair, softly taken my hand out of his, held his face in my hands, kissed his forehead and said “you’ll be fine”. A tear had trickled but no more fell, for those eyes trusted me. The boy sitting next to him watched all this and then asked “what’s your name?”. When my brother answered, the boy said “that’s my name too!”. My baby brother laughed. He waved me good bye and I walked out – at peace. I did it with ease, with much pride and I did it alone.  

Now, I think I’m fortunate. I will do it again tomorrow. I will do it with my first born. I will do it as a Mother. I will hold his little hand, walk my little man into his first classroom. And say to him “You’ll be fine”. I hope that he sees the same faith, if not more, and takes his first step into a wider world with ease and confidence. He sleeps peacefully while I write this. I look at him. A deep sigh of peace, a thanks for the blessing that he is, a smile, a longing to lie next to his little warm body and cuddle him – I know I will sleep. I have to wake up for tomorrow, when I will live a proud moment, when I will create a beautiful memory – one that will always light up my heart in the years to come whenever I think of it. 
As felt on 15/08/2016 @02:04 hours

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