#740 ‘Not the best’ childhood milestone

Baby girl hit a milestone last night.

Not the good kind.

As your child grows, it is ALL about the milestones. Rolling over. Sleeping through. Solids. Crawling. Babbling. Walking. Talking. Toilet training…

It just goes on and on and on.

We hit another milestone last night. In this thing called Parenthood, where the first sign of anything horrible

  • her first scraped knuckles when she fell pushing the bin up the driveway
  • her first head blow
  • the first sign of blood
  • the first proper vomit – down my leg no less

well, we ABSOLUTELY FREAK OUT, we stuck to routine and did just that last night.

Baby girl woke in the middle of the night. Crying and so upset. And then…

Dum da dum dum.


I won’t go into detail, just for the sake of her privacy as I write about this on this world wide web with almost every single eye available to stalk see, but let’s just say, it wasn’t pretty.

Fellow parents may guess, anyway.

We were horrified. Shocked. And then extreme sadness and disappointment… at ourselves. We as parents, had FAILED her.

We went to bed as she soon settled, after I had called ‘Nurse On Call’ (I should have them on speed dial) and spent a good half hour both in the silent darkness, the other half whispering to each other “how the hell did this happen?”

Relief for me this morning, as she woke happy and cheerful – nothing like the upset and crying image of the night before. Off to the docs we went, to find out…

It was not all bad news. Annoying yes. Serious, no. Apparently, for kids her age, it was very common.

A quote keeps going through my head today. My Mum on the phone, saying “you saved her.” Yes, maybe a bit dramatic Mum, it wasn’t life-threatening….

But then, gratitude came along, as it always does, especially when I am writing for this post. It was gratitude in that I decided to stop, think, pause, and pat myself on the back, because she was right.

If I hadn’t been as attentive as I was, I wouldn’t have caught ‘it.’ It would have gone undetected, and for God knows how long… I shudder at the thought.

But I did see it. It isn’t serious. There are far worse things out there, and as long as you can treat it quickly, you know your kid is still doing well.

Sure, she is growing up. She is doing 4 year-old things, learning and saying 4 year-old phrases, and also subsequently, catching 4 year old things… It’s a part of this growing up process. I am grateful for her growth, yes… just as long as it means I can buy an over-the-counter product if need be…



#736 Cherishing the “Mama”s

“Help me Mama.”

“Mama can you come play with me, pleeeeaaaasssseeeee?”

“Mama where are you? Mama?!”

“No Mama, me do it by self.”

“Thank you Mama.”

(In the middle of the night) “Mama!”

I find it hard to remember the transition. The transition from when baby girl was a baby and not yet saying “Mama,” to when she was older and then suddenly, it was ONLY Mama.

Maybe because it is so swift a change. They say it a handful of times and you clap your hands in glee, with tears welling at the corners of your eyes, and then in a few days time they are following you with repeated “Mama, Mama, Mama, Mama, Mama, Mama, Mama…”

And you sigh a little and grumble under your breath “great.”

But today, on another quiet and down day, I took the time to try and be present in the moment, and in doing so, I heard her sweet voice.


I hope she calls me like that for the rest of our lives.

And then at some point today…

“Mama… I like you best.”



Photo by Arleen wiese on Unsplash


#718 The beginning of 4 year-old kinder and freedom

Today was baby girl’s first day at 4 year-old kinder, good and proper. We got out of the car 10 minutes before drop-off time, I plopped on her backpack, and then prepared myself for 5 hours of ‘me’ time.

But then, I saw another car. People were coming out of this car too, getting ready for kinder, too. The Mum. The Dad. The little girl kinder-goer, and her little brother, still too young to attend. And then the clincher, the grandparents.

I hadn’t expected it. The wave of emotion. I was happy to see such a beautiful family, all-encompassing supportive sight. But it made me immediately think of my own parents, and how far they were from us, and how dropping in to see off their grand-daughter as she attended her first 4 year-old kinder session, was a difficult endeavour to see through.

I blinked past the emotion, and charged on through, following her inside.


I mean, this was the same kindergarten she had attended last year. One of the teachers was the same. As it was, there was no difference to her in this year and last – okay sure, there were new kids, and a new teacher… but that was much of a muchness. Nothing was really different.

Except for the beginning of 3 kinder sessions a week. She was starting a proper routine.

I had to turn away from the picture of happy families inside. Sooo many Mums and Dads abound. I kept thinking of Hubbie, and how he was at work, and not there. ‘It’s ok,’ I told myself. ‘He was here last year when she started 3 year-old, and she didn’t give a shit when we walked off, and then I bawled my eyes out in the carpark while he went back to work.’

He had been there, sure. I just wasn’t expecting all those parents. It gave me wobbly feelings.

I followed her around the yard. Watched her slide down. Swing. Jump. Played shop with her, exchanging bark food, for bark money. Paint.


She drew the water from the beach. I felt myself choke up as I asked the teacher to take a shot of us together, and soon after that I asked baby girl “is it okay if Mummy leaves now?”

“No!” she said. I told her I would then let her decide, and sure enough not even a minute passed and she said “you can go now Mama.” That’s the truck with her you see. She has to be in charge of everything… her terms, even if you mentioned it a moment ago.

We engulfed each other in a flurry of hugs and kisses. And as I walked out the door, I looked back and gave her a little wave. She waved back… and then I watched as she turned away.

See, the ‘freedom’ in the above post title? It’s not mine I’m referring to. It’s all HERS.

I walked back to the car, trying to suppress the sob rising in my throat, not understanding why I was acting this way. My face screwed up in protest.

It was simply, the act of growing up. She was becoming a big girl. I was grateful that she had walked into the classroom easily, as too often last year she played the ‘reluctance’ game, hanging back while other parents and kids walked on by, while I played good cop/bad cop, trying a variety of tactics to force, beg, reason with her to go inside.

Is that why I was so up and down? My nervous emotions at her entry going into today? Everything was the same, right?

No. She was older. And only a year away from prep. I can say now with certainty, I won’t be able to cope when that day comes.

I have all this extra ‘me’ time on my hands now. I should be ecstatic. I was initially. But now all I can do is think how I have even more time to think, about my girl, still so dependant on me, becoming more independent as the year goes on.

I took her straight to the bathroom as we entered the house in the afternoon. Stood her in the bathtub, shoes and socks off. Explanation? Sand pit. Say no more.

She stood there, one hand against the tiled wall, the other hand washing her foot of debris, and then alternating feet, the other in the air to be washed. I went to hold her steady, to help her.

“Noooo Mama. Leave me alone.”

I stood back. “Awww. Honey you can’t say that to me, not today of all days.” Still I let her do her thing, and as she finished her foot slid a little in the bathtub – not dangerously so, but enough to make her jolt a bit.

“See?” I said matter-of-factly, my eyes welling up again. “You do still need me! You’ll still need me for another 15 years at least.”

And then I smiled, as I again tried not to cry. “You’ll always need me,” I whispered.

That afternoon, I called my Mum.

#708 Trolley hopping

It wasn’t a ground-breaking or huge a-ha! moment that had me leaning toward the gratitude path today…

But rather, it occurred as it has, many times before, at the grocery store.

It was such a simple realisation. Baby girl was sitting in the carriage part of the trolley as I pushed along, getting bits here, and bits there, to take home. She was making sure I knew the trolley rules: give her the item, before she would then lay it down in the trolley beside her.

And as we headed out of the cereal aisle, in the midst of my pointed shopping list thoughts, I caught a glimpse of her – sitting so casually, with a pleasant smile, looking about her and just generally in a happy demeanour.

And I realised, how much she had grown. How grown up she was this year, compared to last. And how big her life was about to grow. Because her routine was going to step up a decent notch this year, and soon she would be at kinder, more often than she would be in the shopping trolley with me as I shopped for groceries.

And then I felt a little sad. Both our routines were going to change so much, and suddenly it felt like it was all going too quick.

“Baby girl… hey, baby girl?”

She turned to me.

“I love you.”

She gave me a broad smile, and I pushed onwards.

#691 Sleep-ins with my pre – 4 year old kinder girl

Something dawned on me just this week.

And it wasn’t the pretty colours of the sunrise kind either.

You see, as we are getting closer and closer to the time, a month away now, when baby girl starts to attend three 5 hour sessions of kinder a week, my dominant phrase has been this:

“15 free hours a week! YAY!”

ALL THE TIME. Anyone who asks if baby girl is at kinder, I apply with an immediate “yes” and then an almost as fast incomprehensible “15freehoursaweekYAY!”

Sure, I will have a whole lot of adult responsible life things to do in that time, like bills and grocery shopping and house stuff, and then there is Zumba that I want to return to, and those 1000s of photos I want to place chronologically in photo albums, and then print out the 1000s more I need to get up to date.

But then, the realisation.

I was in bed with baby girl the other day, after 9am, and we were just snuggling, chilling, doing a whole lot of nothing, as we laughed and giggled and talked about how we slept, and I kept trying to will myself out of bed, but I just couldn’t.

Something made me stay there longer.

Yes, I was getting these 15 hours of child-free time a week. But to get there, I would be getting up at 7am three times a week too. Gone were my sleep-ins with her past 9am, the lazy relaxing mornings, even my 1:30am bedtimes… yes, I have gone THAT FAR.

Suddenly, her three sessions of kinder, my Wednesday and Saturday work days, and Fridays usually spent catching up with appointments, that only left ONE definite day to sleep in…


I was going from sleep-ins MOST days, to sleep-ins… 1 DAY.


And there was no stopping it. Even with another child, it didn’t matter – because baby girl would be going from kinder, to primary school, to high school – the wake-ups would only become harder and more frequent and demanding!

So this morning, as baby girl came upstairs at 9:15, and I slept on and off another 30 minutes, before opening my eyes properly… and she asked me “you have good sleep Mama?” and we hugged and tickled each other, and talked about what we would do today, and I took a good 15 extra minutes to haul my behind out of bed…

I relished. Because these days won’t last forever. In fact, their days are numbered…

#674 3 year-old kinder – Tick

And just like that. A year almost gone.

And a school year gone with it.

I can’t believe how quickly the end of the year has arrived. More so that it signals the end of 3 year-old kinder for baby girl. Today I watched the 4 year-old kinder group at their special black-robed, square-hat graduation in lead up to primary school, while the younger group, including baby girl, watched on at what awaited them next year.


A year already! It felt insane. My girl was growing up too fast. It wasn’t fast enough in those early, early days, of sleepless nights, odd schedules, intense confusion about everything… and yet now each day Hubbie came home from work and said to her incredulously “did you grow again?” and she would stand against the wall to show how tall she really was.

I am grateful that she completed this year of kindergarten, through all the ups and downs… and next year will be the real deal, 4 year-old kindergarten.

15 hours to spare a week? What will I do with myself?


I don’t know whether to laugh or cry at baby girl’s increasing independence. Maybe for now, I’ll try the upward smile…


#669 When they say her name no.2

With one more session of kinder to go for the year, you can be assured that the kids know each other’s names by now.

As parents too, I know fairly most of them. They are so sweet, and I feel like I’ve even grown fond of many of them, though we only see them once a week. I even think of the kids parents like “Alisha’s Dad,” and “Sarah’s Mum,” than to actually go by their names.

And hearing someone call out to baby girl, well, the novelty has not grown old, not one bit.

Baby girl was happily telling me what she had done at kinder as we left the building this afternoon, and as we started to cross the car park, she went on to the topic of her lunch.

“Me have little bit wrap… little bit pretzels…”

Sigh, this girl. She is a good eater, don’t get me wrong. But she gets so distracted at kinder, that her lunchbox comes back fairly full every time. I have been on a campaign to get her to eat more during kinder hours, rather than AFTER kinder hours which she has been doing once she gets home (successfully I might add, but you know, teachers want them all ‘school ready’ and everything).

But then as she was rattling what she had had “a little bit” of, she went

“me have lunch outside!”

“Oh?!” I replied. “With who?”

She answered with one of the teacher’s names, and then interestingly, named a boy who was walking with his Mum to their car, only a few metres away parallel to us.

She had named this boy several times before, and had indicated that they had played and he was nice. This made me happy, knowing she had another friend to play with aside from a few girls that she repeatedly mentioned to me,, but also I had to wonder: were these made-up kids games? Was she making up stories to me as kids often do? How could I really know what was going on at kinder, without seeing it for myself?”

At the mention of this boy’s name by baby girl though, I started to say “well, why don’t you say bye to him them?” at the same moment as his Mum looked up at her son’s name being mentioned. This Mum and I shared a broad smile between us as baby girl waved to him with a “bye,” and he did a casual “bye” back.

And then before I could get over that, I heard from behind us “bye baby girl!”

It was another boy calling out to her, and she responded without hesitation and a wave.

OMG. As if she knows everyone, and these little adults that are our kids, are conversing and interacting like 14 year olds when they are in fact 4.

It was the most hilarious yet so adorable and also super-exciting moment to hear her name being called again, and honestly, this little scenario had me almost bursting.

Next week the parents join their kids on the last day for a picnic lunch and graduation ceremony, and already I think I won’t be able to deal with all the cuteness…