Standing at a bus stop with my eight week old baby daughter strapped to me in a baby harness.
I turned to see an old lady gazing at my baby.
She spoke quietly as if she might wake her
Precious beautiful baby, she is an empty vessel be careful what the world puts into her. She pushed fifty pence piece against her tiny hand.
Custom to gift a new baby a silver coin. I thanked her and smiled. It was 1983 I was just eighteen and that was the first bit of wise advise I was given as a new young mum.
I don’t think any of us realise just how fast our children will grow. I know I didn’t.
I lived alone in a tiny bedsit. It was far from ideal but I’d wanted my baby and I was doing the best I knew how. With very little help. I never left her. Ever.
Well not until she was three years old. Time for nursery Not even when my second child was born I had him at home because I couldn’t leave my daughter.
There isn’t a guide book is there. A what to do when you’ve fed, changed, winded and they are still crying, or a number for Mary Poppins when your bedsit is on the ground floor and toilet is upstairs and the baby is asleep. Or your I’ll or you and kids both have a bug and there is no one to help.
Or there is too much week at the end of your money.
I remember sometimes thinking it will be easier when they are older.
It’s never easier as a parent you just worry about different things
If your getting it right.
I think everyone wings it occasionally. I know I did.
I look back now they are all grown up and I’m so proud of them all.
Every new grand child brings joy more love and reminders of my babies and the old lady at the bus stop.
She was so right precious and beautiful and so important what we allow the world to put into them.
Even more so now. Social media and mobile phones technology.
Milestones flashing by, rolling over, sitting up, swimming under water, sleeping all night.
I remember that joy of more than a few hours sleep.
It was hard work being a single mum.
But the best thing I ever chose to do.
My only complaint is it went far too fast.
I still worry about them now they are grown with children of their own.
But I’d do it all again in a heart beat.