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Mar 9

For parents everywhere

Posted on Sunday, March 9, 2008 in Family, Poems and things

I wrote this rather maudlin poem today while stuck between a rock and a hardplace.  Puppychild was outside playing with other children when suddenly a kid pulled a toy out of her hands, causing her to fall over.  Tears followed, with heartrending appeals for a motherly hug which I felt I had to deny her for her own good.  I watched with tears in my eyes as she eventually picked herself up and decided to fight for the toy herself, a fight which she won. 

My pride at her small accomplishment made me realise that sometimes it is selfish to want to protect a child from absolutely everything, so I am trying hard to figure out exactly where the line falls between love and cruelty, nature and nurture. 

For parents everywhere
(Or: A sonnet for softies)

How tough it is to leave the loving room
Where childhood slept wrapped up in tender care
How suddenly the blanket of my womb
Was ripped away to find my child laid bare

Now on her own, the daunting task is nigh-
To let her grow despite the harshest winds
How do I stem the love, my kiss deny,
To ready her for schoolyard streetwise sins?

A greater pain I feel for cuts and scars
Than she, the wounded child who stands alone
Though tears are falling softly through the bars,
My heart must build a prison cell of stone

My freedom waits until the day I see
She’s found her comfort independently

Bring on the comments

  1. Deborah says:

    Aw K8 that is so beautiful… and true!

  2. Granny says:

    Ahh! I felt so sad for you. A lovely poem. I wish I could write like that.

  3. Nice one. I usually give my girls tips on how to punch more effectively (no, keep the wrist straight, contact with these two knuckles, you’ll break the little one if you use that)

    Kidding of course.

  4. flirty says:

    a poet as well!

  5. Hails says:

    You’ve got talent, girl.

    This is beautiful. I’ve never considered what it must be like to be a parent and have to allow your child to get out there and stand up for herself, when you want to do it for her.

    Mind you – I can’t even look after *my*self! ;)

  6. Oh that describes it beautifully. Only thing is I don’t think the day comes when we no longer worry about our children. The world is tough, we have to prepare them for that, but it is very hard to see them take these knocks.

  7. englishmum says:

    *sigh*. Girl, you are such a wordsmith. Gives me goosbumps.

  8. K8 says:

    Deborah; Thanks! How painful this truth is, but worth it I guess.

    Tanks, ma. You could say I learned by good example?

    Thriftcriminal; No kidding, that’s daddy’s job! I have no problems at all with daddies teaching their kids the physical tricks to self-defence. There’s nothing funny about broken thumb knuckles!

    Flirty; Only by accident.

    Hailey; Thanks!!! Why can’t children be more like cats? BTW, have you seen this photo? It’s begging for a caption! (tee hee)

    Sam; How true this is. I keep thinking that I’ll be free when the kids turn 18 to go and roam the planet, but I know you speak the truth… nobody warned me about this in sex-ed!

    Englishmum; Why thank you! I is only learning, can’t quite grasp the profound abstract yet- or do I want to?

  9. That’s really nice. I’m qualified to comment on matters poesy as I was very good at English at school.

    I’m fluent in it now.

    Oh and by the way, I’m tagging you on my blog. Heh heh!

  10. “No kidding, that’s daddy’s job!”

    True, but I’ll wait a little longer before teaching my 3 year old rising block, reverse punch, side step and side thrust kick to the knee :-) I don’t want the creche littered with bodies.

  11. K8 says:

    Mc Danger; Maybe my comment should’ve read ‘… and your little BLOG, too!’

    Thriftcriminal; Sure there’s very little they’re not already being taught by Sportacus or that dastardly Fifi the flowertot. She is one evil bint…

  12. englishmum says:

    Ooops. I meant goosebumps. I’m not bad at English either. Just shite at typing x

  13. That struck a chord.

    My #2 son was pushed around at school a few months ago by a little **** and had to have stitches in his head as a result of being slung against a wall in the yard. My first instinct, well second after hugging him until he nearly suffocated, was to inflict bodily injury on some other mothers child…bad eh?

    After so many years of ‘tell the teacher’ I now instruct #2 and #1 to keep their thumbs tucked in and aim for the nose…does that make a bad mother or just a protective one who wants her boys to stand up for themselves…you could possibly have opened a can of proverbials here K8.

  14. Baino says:

    Aww K8 I’m sending your poem to ClareBear . . the wrench is hard no matter what age. My little street fighter is in Peru and finding her comfort independently. I still pine! No need to stem the love, it’s a lifetime commitment.

  15. Beautifully put. Thankfully yours was not the robber child, that’s a whole lot more complicated to deal with.

  16. K8 says:

    Queen of Clean; ‘My first instinct…was to inflict bodily injury on some other mothers child…bad eh?’ Not really… I never thought myself capable of thoroughly hating a child until I moved into this housing estate. I’ve been awfully tempted to run them over. Yes I am going to hell.

    Camron; Slapper.

    Baino; That’s what I was afraid of. A little bird (not Waldorf) told me that Champagne helps, though.

    Conan; Unfortunately yes, my kid is on both sides of the fence. Monkey see, monkey do of course. What a complicated mess this parenting business is!

  17. Natalie says:

    Speachless really….so very well put.

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