Uncountable are the buckets of tears that have been shed by mothers who have lost their children. The mothers in the Philippines too well embrace sorrow as a well-known unwelcome friend.
This poem in its simplicity is another tear to add to the buckets…
Reality check: This post is a reflection that I am sharing with the wordpress dpchallenge prompt Frightening. I was inspired to write this poem for the children lost in the claws of disaster in the Philippines after I saw the pieces of a child that were being picked up by police on a busy street corner. They included a child’s red shovel and a little blue cap. Tears poured from my eyes and I could only hope those things fell from a vehicle not from the arms of a child.
Parents face many a milestone as they raise children; a significant milestone is sending a child off to school for the first time.
I see them walking past my window – new shoes, new back packs and I reflecti back…
“Mommy mommy I think I hear it.”
“Oh honey” she ruffled my hair lovingly “you still have another twenty minutes.”
“But shouldnt I be there just in-case” I said with a gap-toothed smile
“Let’s make sure you have everything ” she was trying to stall me I later realized.
“You have your pencils?”
“Hmm” I looked cross-eyed I hadn’t put that in my backpack. I opened the zipper. “Yes” I giggled knowing who put my lunch in my pack.
“Yes” I felt in my pocket.
“How ’bout a kiss?”
“Nope none of those in here.” I teased.
I put my arms around mommy’s neck. I didn’t realize the sacrifice she made in watching me grow up. This was as big a step for her as it was for me.
“Ok then I think they are ready for you smarty pants.”
With that I looked down to check that my shoes were tied.I grabbed my sweater and my backpack and ran out the door.
I didn’t think to wave til I got to the end of the drive. All of a sudden I felt it too. The long invisible cord that connected my mommy and I was stretched as far as it would stretch. A tear reached my eye as I realized she could not go with me on this journey. “Bye bye” I yelled “I love you mommy.”
Today many children will go back to school while others will go for the very first time. This story is for the mothers and fathers who have to let go of their children so many times and so many ways.
Leslie Moon is a published children’s writer who has told stories to young and old the better part of her life. She writes many genres but she will always consider herself a children’s writer. Please check back as there will be stories each week to inspire the child in you.
I wasnt there but I felt your fear. We are mothers after all who have big, strong sons. Strong arms that will hold us when we are frail and weak.
We will never meet but I was there in the waiting room with you. I was holding your hand. I shed a tear. I wanted to yell at the doctors to hurry. I wanted to scrub in and help.
He swallowed a screw you told me through tear brimmed eyes.
“He was fixing the wall in our house when he inhaled it. When he started coughing painful spurts of blood we knew there was trouble. There are no doctors near our village. A friend drove us in his truck many miles to the hospital.”
“They told us the risk was great they couldn’t find the screw in the x-ray. The doctor knew something was there. they had to find it.”
I hugged her. There was a picture in my mind of a screw in your son. I prayed the doctor would find it my friend. If he were my son, you would do the same.
They found the screw after hours of exploring. “The rate of infection is high,” they said. After two weeks, the mother, my friend proudly showed me the screw tucked next to her heart. We danced around the screw – for life, for sons.
I wrote this note to the mama I will never meet:” I got the call before your son went into surgery; my friend a doctor was overseas. He was there when your son needed him. Our lives are different you are from a small village in Zimbabwe I am from a big city in the United Stated. We are one as mothers. I was so glad my doctor friend was there to help your son. I was there with you in prayer.”
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