Upstairs, Downstairs

This poem was written for my former downstairs neighbour and dear friend who has now returned home to Egypt with her husband and children. It was an honour and a joy to share our lives with them, and to find a warm connection that overcame any differences.

Happy Mother’s Day to all moms everywhere!! Peace be with you. May you always be supported, embraced and encouraged by your fellow moms all over the world! Go team! 🙂

 

Upstairs: a crazy crew of kids

six littles bouncing, dancing, singing, banging.

Downstairs: two small sweeties,

running, shouting, playing, laughing.

 

Upstairs, downstairs

the mothers scold, cook, cuddle and caress.

 

Upstairs, downstairs

the mothers mother

day and night.

 

Upstairs, downstairs

the women sing

in Arabic and English,

songs of faith and lullabies

unique yet universal,

of one heart.

 

Upstairs, downstairs

the women weep,

mourn lost babies–

precious ones snatched away too soon–

in each other’s arms

these mothers find warm comfort.

 

Upstairs, downstairs

the women pray,

observe Lent and Ramadan,

break their fasts and rejoice together

over homemade sweets.

 

Upstairs, downstairs

the women hope,

cherishing the new lives

nestled in their wombs…

little tiny babies

due at the same time.

May they be best friends!!

 

In the world there is hatred

but not in our house.

Upstairs, downstairs

there is love.

 

Mom-date…or princess for a day!

Today the baby and I had a date. Just the two of us…and a delicious salted caramel latté. We had lunch, she napped while I wrote poetry, we browsed thrift stores, bought a fancy teething necklace for her to chew on, and looked at pretty feminine things like flowery dresses and teacups.

Every now and then you gotta quit scrubbing floors and be a princess for a day. Call it a mom sanity date or shopping therapy or whatever, but that quiet time is gold! All I really wanted for Mother’s Day was a little quiet time, and I got it. I feel human again. Hurrah!

As for the rest of my crew, they had a awesome picnic at the park with our weekly babysitter. Happy meals at the park…oh, yeah, best day ever baby!

Happy Mother’s Day to all you awesome mamas out there…I hope you’re able to show yourselves some love and gentleness, and take care of yourselves as well as you do your families. It’s so important for everyone! 🙂

Thanks, Mum

Perhaps motherhood is less about who we are
and more about who we let our children become.

Thanks, Mum, for letting me become me.

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Thanks for letting me play in the dirt,
build forts in the woods
and climb trees taller than our house.

Thank you for my brothers–
companions in the world of pretend,
where winter was always coming
and we had to stock our pantry with
meat and potatoes–
pine cones and red chunks of log.

Thanks for giving me my own tiny garden
to grow flowers and cucumbers
and look for fairies in the morning dewdrops.

Thanks for letting me stay up late reading
“The Hobbit” and “Anne of Green Gables,”
and for those quiet chats before bed,
when the hectic bustle of the day was over
and you lay in your long cosy nightgown,
listening to me.

Thanks for taking me travelling
to live overseas,
to speak a new language
and see so many places
beyond our small town in Canada.
(It was awesome, eh?)

Thanks for making those thousands of school lunches
and the unimaginable amounts of laundry,
for letting me play soccer and do drama
and especially for coming to my plays.

Thanks for encouraging me to write, take pictures and chase dreams.

And as I read stories to my own brood of elves and fairies,
build forts and make gardens with them,
I smile at getting to be a kid again,
your happy daughter, still.

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Happy Mother’s Day!

I was so touched to receive this thoughtful little gift, a bag of candies with this lovely quote from a friend of mine. She is very a unassuming and gentle person, but full of warmth and sweetness. She found time, while caring for and homeschooling her 10 kids, to make me this. I think her actions confirm the quote!
 
Happy Mother’s Day to all mothers out there, whether your children are big or small, clambering all over you like squirrels or calling long distance. 

A special hug and prayer for all mothers who have lost children, or who haven’t been able to have any…at least ones staying with them on earth. You desire to love and give yourself to others makes your heart just as much a mother’s heart as mine. May God bless you!  

Above all, let’s remember that with all its joys and challenges, motherhood is a gift…we have been entrusted with the care of amazing little people…may we rejoice in that and be confident that with grace, we can be the mothers we are meant to be, despite all our imperfections. So today let’s not compare ourselves or see how we measure up…let’s celebrate all mothers and encourage each other to keep loving our families with all our hearts!