I love your little fears

I love your little fears

You are done with nursery and have started school. Uniforms, ringing bells, rules; it’s a whole new ball game. Barely three days later , you fell sick.

A week at home with the flu, television and mummy and now it’s time to go back. You wake up grumpy and don’t want to get dressed. I play your current favorite cartoon and feed you a glass of porridge. After wearing your uniform (which you so lovingly call unicorn), you start crying and beg to stay home to continue watching ‘Max and Ruby’. ‘No Ri, we have to go.’ I strap you in and we play ‘I spy’ on the drive. ‘There will be lots of games to play with your friends at school and you’ll have so much fun!’ I keep saying and you nod along reluctantly.

We reach and walk through the noisy corridor; chanting children in crisp whites and navy blues holding each other’s shoulders and walking in a line, teachers announcing instructions, bag storing lockers being opened and shut frantically.

“Mama, I’m excited.” You hold my hand and confess suddenly.
I look down and smile, “That’s great Ri.”
After a pause, you mumble, “Mama, I’m also scared.”
“It’s okay baby, you’ll have a great day.” I lift your little fist and plant a kiss.

After briefing the teacher I walk away, leaving you to look around for someone familiar to play with. I feel a small cloud forming within me, condensing little tufts of an unknown emotion. It is only when I sit in the car and start driving that the tears pour. I imagine your little feet in white sneakers, taking each step. This is so silly, I think to myself, why am I crying? But I can’t stop, it isn’t fair that our children have such power to move us with their tenderness.

I realize that these tears flow from the pride I have for you. You are three-and-a-half years old and yet able enough to feel this confusing cocktail of enthusiasm and trepidation and be brave enough to proceed.

Yes my darling, I am proud of your fear for it will take you places; it will be the bed of nails that tortures you with so much discomfort that you’ll get out of it everyday and fight for your right to a life that is nothing less than fabulous; it will be the fuzzy blanket that gives your crazy dreams company; it will be the darkness you crave when everything feels all too safe and content that you know you’re missing out on the ‘something more’ that you deserve; it will be the greed that makes you want to clench your existence tightly and squeeze every drop of blissful pain that accompanies glory.

I love you and your little fears. I love that you’re a reminder for me to confront my own worries and drown them out with excitement for the unknown. I love that although I feel on the brink of absolute mental chaos about what the future holds for me, I imagine those little feet of yours striding forward and feel the inner quivering girl within me awaken.

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