Amongst the sweetest words I have ever heard my daughter utter is the phrase, "I want you".
There have been many times when Natalie would say to me, "mum" and I would answer, "yes?" and she would repeat, "mum"... I would respond so many different ways - "Yes, Natalie", "What", "What do you want sweetheart" and she would have nothing to say but "mum".
More recently Natalie has started saying to me, "I want you". And I'll tell you right now, when I hear those words whatever I may have been doing becomes so insignificant and I just go and be with her. Because she wants me. And I guess that's what she'd been trying to say all that time.
I live and breathe my sweet little family. As challenging as it can be at times I am getting better at putting the people in my life - and most importantly family - first. If the dishes, or the washing, or the homework, or the text message, or whatever get left til later... they will wait. But if all my babies ever here is, "in a minute honey" or, "I'm just doing..." they're going to stop asking. There are obviously times when I have to cook dinner or do something else that has a schedule attached to it but I never, ever, want my children to feel that I'd rather be doing that stuff than spending precious time with them. Because children measure love with time.
Among the other sweet things Natalie says to me are, "I love you mummy", and "I like you". I think that second one is just as important as the first. It says to me, "I like being with you and you are a nice person". Aren't kids great for the soul? I also love, "I want to help you". Whether it's making breakfast, washing dishes, or putting on a load of washing, I try to make an effort to let her help... partly because the day may come when she'd rather be doing other things than chores with her mum but mostly because the time we spend together doing it is precious and it teaches her that I want her to be with me and that she can be a participator in life. Because life is something you make happen, not something that happens to you.
My kids are teaching me some pretty wonderful lessons, they are buoying my soul up with their love, and they are teaching me that who I am is ok but also how I can be better than I am.
Hayley doesn't say all the things Natalie says yet, but she is pretty good at communicating none-the-less. The way she wraps her little arms snugly around my neck and cuddles me tight makes my heart sing. It's like a hymn. Likewise the little kisses on my cheek. The way she'll take one cracker and hold out her other hand for another one... and you think "she wants two crackers of course" but then she goes over to Natalie and gives her one instead. The way she lights up when she hears the garage door opening and she runs to the door with enthusiasm because she knows daddy's home.
Does the heart get any fuller?