An open letter to my son as he is about to start school


Like the little miracle that you are, you entered my life by chance. Since that day I have been repeatedly blessed by your presence, your shine and your smile that lights up my world. As a mother, there are so many lessons I need to teach you in this world and believe me when I say I want the very best for you. But- mark my words- the very best is health, happiness and the security of unconditional love. Everything else, can and will take care of itself.

For a five- year- old you have endured a lot. You have experienced a kind of instability and turbulence in your little world, that no little person should really have to endure. At various stages you’ve had not one, but two sick parents. You’ve been in long day care from a young age. Your real-world experiences were for years limited to the scope of a Mum suffering crippling post-natal depression and anxiety. But believe me when I say that even at my worst, I have always done my very best for you.

You are a little boy with very real fears about sickness, hospitals, injuries, loud noises and bullies as well. Sometimes these things make you feel very anxious. I understand and I will always be here for you.

You were at one time regarded as delayed in terms of development and did not walk until you were eighteen months. I blamed myself. But I also never lost faith that you would eventually get there, my little warrior. Even though you occasionally go into sensory overload, I know and understand that you are a little boy, in a crazy big wide world, having lived a somewhat challenging life for a little one… and that is enough to make anyone’s head spin.

I have invested in speech therapy to do my best to help lovingly push and guide your development alongside the professionals. We have consulted an occupational therapist. Apparently, you “struggle to sit still and concentrate.” But I know you are a delightfully excitable little boy and those skills will come in time and with more practice. You take your time, little man. There’s plenty of years of adult life in which to “sit still and concentrate” ahead. And if I need to do so, I will keep on buying weighted toys until the day I die. I need you to know, I’m cool with that too.

Together we can practice sitting quietly and focussing on activities, but I will never condemn you for wanting to do otherwise. It’s your beautiful, inquisitive and sensory craving nature. You’re not a naughty kid, you crave stimulation. You delight in majestic moments of watching the moon, stars and sky and being completely mesmerized by the tawny frogmouth (owl like native bird) in our tree. You’re also deliriously sweet, never failing to pick a daisy or two for me to help “make me happy.”

Little do you realise, your life is a constant reminder of why I need to keep fighting to stay well. Sometimes, loud noises or even music frightens you. That’s ok my little man, loud noises even frighten grown up’s sometimes (even Mums and Dads, and grandparents too). Occasionally, you get distracted and your toilet training has been a slow and arduous process. But that is ok, son. I know you will get on just fine given your own sweet time. You have absolutely got this.

Your delightfully hilarious social commentary never ceases to amaze me. You are wise and empathetic beyond your years and your artwork is divine. You are my pride and joy. You are absolutely perfect in every facet of your being so please, don’t ever doubt that. You need never worry about not being enough. You have always been more than enough. You’re my absolute treasure.

When you were relentlessly harassed at kindergarten (for better or worse) I quietly gave you my blessing to fight back, hoping it would put an end to the reign of terror you were enduring. But such is your compassionate, caring, sweet spirited soul that you never took me up on your green card for biffo. You don’t have a mean bone in your body. When I had enough of seeing your hurt and instructed you that you could fight back you just looked at me with those big blue eyes opened wide and simply said, “No! I couldn’t do that.”

I will always endeavour to do my best to help you move along in life within the scope of my own knowledge and skills. You better believe that if you ever get to thirty and fall in love and still can’t pronounce your letter l’s, there’ll be a lucky woman (or fella?) who “yuvs you” right back, just as unconditionally as I do. You will win friends, my angel. Your hilarious comments, your cheeky smile and your gentle but excited disposition are majestic my little man. Your loyalty to family, your beloved tigers and your “brother” (our rescue dog) Barlie is unwavering. You even persevere with (the cat) Midnight – who clearly hates us all. I am so proud of that.

So, as you start your formal schooling education, I want you to know this: If you never win an academic achievement award – that is so fine. I know it would never be through lack of trying. If you ever come last in school athletics or cross country – I will beam with pride at your participation ribbon because I know you will have earned it. And if you happen to be one of the last kids left in the playground to make friends- that’s ok too- because someone has to be. It’s ok to be picked last in gym class too.

I will always hug and love you irrespective of whether you ace or scrape through your school year. You will deserve a pat on the back for every milestone (however minor it may seem). And as long as you are happy and healthy I will do my best to be too. Although I readily acknowledge the truth is that way too often your brand of kindness, creativity, compassion, empathy and tenacity, just don’t get the recognition they deserve. But irrespective, never doubt your own perfection, just as you are.

I’ll be forever proud of and love you dearly, my blessed little man.

Love Mum






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