Here is something a little different from what I usually post.
I wrote this poem in much darker days.
I found the whole experience of writing it quite cathartic.
For some people catharsis comes through counselling, a long bath, a walk, a chat.
For me it happens in a whole variety of ways – Poetry was not a way I expected!
I did briefly share it with a few people as an outlet for some pretty intense and difficult feelings we were all going through at the time.
I cannot profess to ever even considering becoming a poet – I know nothing of syntax, verse, iambic pentameters and such – I mean heck – my poem doesn’t even rhyme!
In fact I would go as far to say I have probably disgraced poetry and all it stands for!
Many people will have been met with the “Welcome to Holland” poem up on starting this special needs journey; and I know it can be subject that sparks many debates and unfurls a whole host of different opinions.
For me personally, I loved it. I know that others that feel very differently.
But I would like to share this with you because I think it conveys a lot of what we all go through at the start of the special needs parenting journey.
I hope it resonates with everyone.
Little girl – You weren’t meant to enter the world this way Little girl, how our hearts ached for you those first few weeks.
Awash in a sea of tubes, monitors and machines. You had us petrified, so anxious, so torn.
You fought hard.
You did more in those first few days than most of us would have to contend with ever in life.
You made it when they thought you wouldn’t.
Little girl – How we all cried, how we sometimes still do. Little girl, we sometimes still mourn what could have been.
Remember that day on the park, you sat on your mummy’s knee and we watched the children play?
All I could think is – will my little girl do that one day?
And then I told myself… even if she doesn’t, it’s more than okay. Because you’re here. You can feel love and happiness, and that’s what matters.
Little girl – When will all of these appointments stop?!
Little girl – You have no idea how many people are involved in your well being and care for you. This was never meant to happen and it’s hard, but we know it’s all to ensure you have the best future possible.
When people ask “how is she doing?” and “how are you coping?” I still don’t know what to say.
“She’s achieving her own milestones, she’s growing” or “I’m doing fantastically, we’re so happy” or “I cry a lot, there is a lot of pain and uncertainty in our lives”.
One day I hope it won’t be the latter.
Little girl – One day I want you to have a brother or a sister. When we have more money, more stability, when things are settled… in the distant future.
Little girl – They will adore you how we do. Mummy and Daddy worry – This world can be cruel, people judge and can be unkind.
We don’t want you to ever see that. We want it to be butterflies, flowers and smiles for you. We will do everything we can for that to be your reality.
Little girl – We try not to focus on what you cannot do. We want to celebrate what you can do.
Little girl – Remember when you learned to breathe for yourself? Remember when you first smiled? How about when you rolled on your side the other day? Remember how mummy always cries with happiness and gives you a big cuddle in excitement?
Little girl – Sometimes you are so grumpy. What did the car seat and pram ever do that was so bad?
Little girl – Will you ever be able to tell us? So much we don’t know.
Little girl – You are our world. You keep fighting so we can.
Little girl – We love you so much.
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