The Worth Of Words

When I was growing up, I knew from a very young age that I was super sensitive. Words hurt me or built me up with incredible ease on both accounts. I would mull over what was said, trying to squeeze every inch of meaning out of the words. I would analyse until I could go no further. Sometimes it took me down a very lonely road; there were times when I felt that nobody cared. Other times, I would soar on the wings of elation for weeks after a beautiful comment was made.

No words meant more to me than those of my father. For some reason, his words mattered the most. If Dad said it was going to be okay, I relaxed. If Dad said something looked good, I believed him. If Dad said something was worthwhile, I pursued it, or felt guilty for not having looked into it at least. Dad stopped me from making many dumb decisions, all with his words.

Fast forward to today – his words still matter a lot. I have learnt to brush off things that aren’t quite true, measuring them against the truth of my Heavenly Father’s words. Yet a compliment will still carry me a thousand miles. No matter what, I love my Dad very much.

This week I had cause to thank him for helping me buy the most expensive pair of shoes I have ever owned. All in the name of helping my very sore feet. We had planned to go halves, but when the cost was a lot more than we hoped, he still only asked for the agreed amount from me. I wrote Dad “Thankyou xo” and I received a most unexpected beautiful reply…

“No thank you for the privelege of being your dad”.
I will walk for many a mile with the cushioning of those sweet words.

Winter Concert

Standing there under warm lights,

Violin raised and bow drawn,

I found you in that sea of faces

At sweet, innocent, fifteen.

I’d never seen you through that lens

And perhaps never will again-

A thrill not equalled on that stage-

Proud moment standing still.

As I played, you did not know

The ballad became my theme-

“I’d die for you”, the test;

The music still reprises.

Long gone, but not forgotten-

It hurt because I loved;

Too close to your warmth, I fell-

Wings fairly crumpled.

Although you said goodbye,

I know I’ll see your face again-

(I hope the one I played for,

Not the fool you became!)

A brother you’ll be, at best,

Still I’ll save a spot for you

When I take the stage last time,

May my song not be in vain!

©️ M.R.P. 12.2.20

Being Present

What a busy start to the school year- I had already returned to work the week prior to when my son returned. My almost 3- year-old daughter has been super clingy and my son has been struggling to fall asleep till late- so much in his mind. I have had a tendency to brush off their neediness, so drained of mental energy myself. Many times I had wished for some silence to process my thoughts but stress rose in the constant clamour. Then came a bit of a dollar-dropping moment.

This intense mum season will get quieter, but so will the requests to play with me or for me to listen to another story about Mr B’s Minecraft hobby or to decipher some cutesy phrase that Miss A is trying to compose. The time is now! My agenda needs to move over so that my kids feel loved. I need to take time out for myself, but I need to shower my kids with a whole lot of love also. I needn’t be half present- if I’m there, I need to be all in. They know when I’m not really connected. They also learn what I do, more than what I say or write in a birthday card.

Are you fully present with your loved ones when you visit them or have meals with them? Do you count down the hours to solitude or are you grateful that somebody needs you? It takes work sometimes, but it is a worthy investment of time.

Tick of Approval

I read the first draft to my son and he burst into tears, indignant and unappreciative. Apparently the incorporation of his lost bedtime toys was against the law and I hadn’t written in the style of the author at all. Well then! It was back to the drawing board and I was so disappointed at his reaction, I almost took the “Like it or lump it” response! He was away at his grandparents’ place over the weekend and I missed him enough to consider rewriting my story.

This time, I kept it short and sweet. I made sure I ended the story in the way he originally requested (though I apparently missed out one detail where all the other wild rabbits come to live with the boy and Velveteen rabbit!!!). It was worth the smiles at bedtime- just minutes before, he had been roaring at his dad over some perceived injustice. Such a volatile little boy at times but I was pleased to have his tick of approval as I said goodnight. Now almost four years since he lost his bedtime toys on the Spirit of Tasmania, taking them out of the packed bag and tucking them into bed without telling us (!), he still has a special place in his heart for cats and rabbits!