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Blanket please!

Natalie walks up from her room in the basement
Carrying her soft green blanket
She loves blankets whether it’s summer, fall or winter
They are her companion when she watches TV
They offer her a warm and soft place to be enveloped in

Another one of her blankets is already on the couch
When I point that out
She says she’d like now

Natalie’s love-affair with blankets goes way back
And anytime I see a soft blanket in a store
I wonderful if I should get it and bring it back

It reminds me of the large fluffy dog she asked for
When she was a child
One she kept in her bed for a long time
Now, Cashew has replaced that dog
She gives the best cuddles and she’s even warm

Natasha used to walk with big blankets around the house
No sweaters or robe de chambers for her
Blankets are much better for staying warm she thought
No matter how impractical

Nick is the only one who doesn’t carry blankets around
And no lounging in pyjamas for him either
He showers and gets dressed first thing in the morning
He seems to like that routine

Children are all wonderful and unique
And that goes for their use of blankets , as you can see

September 12th, 2016

Daughters

 

Fathers and daughters have a special bond
I always felt close to my dad
And even now when his physical presence is no longer here
I still count on his support and love

I ask him for help and he responds
I know he’s aware of what’s going on
Sometimes he comes to my dreams and acts as a guide
I know that I’m still in his heart

My daughters and Albert have the same relationship
What draws them to each other, I don’t know
But there was a time when Nat would ask something
And before the sentence was done
Albert would say yes
I had asked the same thing an hour earlier
But the answer was not the same!

Albert would spend hours going over
Homework with Nat, after a long day at the office

Somehow Albert could not say no to her
Nat’s batting eyelashes did their job each time
She had her dad wrapped around her fingers
And I couldn’t figure out what her magic was

There’s something that draws on the
Heartstrings of a dad
When a request comes from his daughter
It’s as if he’s mesmerized
Mind and reason play no part!

It’s a special relationship
It’s a strong bond
One I’m happy to have experienced with my dad
Moms have the same relationship with their sons
So they need not worry and feel left out
January 30th, 2016

A letter to my daughter

January 11th, 2015
Dear Natalie,
My daughter, in Zambia
I’m sending you a letter
Since the Internet is not always on

You had to call us long distance
On your cell phone
And God knows how much
The roaming charges will be
But that’s what parents are for
No worries

The spiders and the beetles in your room
Have conspired against you
They keep an eye on you day and night
But perhaps you’re in their space
Not the other way around

The monkeys are cute I hear
And there are snakes around
You’d start thinking you were in Africa!

The weather is warm
And the people are warm
If that’s too much heat
I wish I could send you some snow

Natalie, dear
Enjoy your time there
You’re creating memories
That will be with you always…

School of Mom…

 

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Mothering is one of the best schools in life
Patience, selflessness, being organized
Being flexible, being inventive, and being kind
Only a few things taught in this school of life
Endurance, problem solving, and creativity are other ones

One has to meet many challenges head on

When I thought I could not wake up again
To a crying child
When problems used to confound me
And I had tried all I could try
I learned to persevere
To problem solve
To open my heart

But eventually I felt burnt out
Because I was last on my to-do-list
And the first to be crossed out due to lack of time
Because I didn’t know the importance of caring for myself
Because I confused it with selfishness

Eventually it occured to me
That to be a good caregiver
I needed to care for myself
I needed an avenue for self expression
I needed a creative outlet

And I realized that
There will never be enough time
There are always things to be done
And that I needed to be an non-negotioable item
On my to-do-list
Not one that woud be crossed out

It’s counter-intuitive but it works
Because when I take care of myself
I can be a better mom!

Lida Berghuis
October 15th, 2013

Not philosophical!

 

I can be philosophical
A lot of the time
Maybe I need to lighten up!
Write a poem about something fun
Something to cheer someone up!

“Tu veux ‘messer’ avec moi?”
Said Nick this morning
To my I pad as he played a game

That cracked me up!
“Don’t even think of it
Tu vas ‘dier’”
He went on

I asked him if he felt lighter
Because he lost a tooth last night?
He said, “No, not really
Another tooth is growing in its spot!

Natalie was nervous for her
First day back
Ready to walk out in -14 degrees
Without mittens on her hands

She wondered if her back pack
Was too full for the first day of the term
I asked her why she
Was worried about that
She said, she stands on the bus
And it’s full
The people next to her may mind

Natasha had her new
Green hat on
With a jacket and scarf
Borrowed from Natalie because
The colours went better together
And as she was leaving
She went over her schedule
Thinking out loud

One by one, they left the house
Into the cold winter day
They stepped out
Are these my kids, I thought
I won’t get philosophical
I promised
So, maybe I’ll stop!

Lida Berghuis
January 17th, 2011

I have to leave!

I have to leave!

Smash!
There goes my favorite vase!

Splash…
All the water spills out!

Splatter…
The flowers fall on the ground!

Scream!
Oh no!
That was my favorite vase!

Tears…
I’m sorry I didn’t mean to
I was just playing a pirate game

Anger!
I have told you many times
Not to play with the broom inside!

Sobs…
You have pushed me too far
I think I want to run out of the house!

Astonishmet!
Who should be angry right now?
The one whose vase is broken
Or the one who has done the crime!?

Mommy I told you, I didn’t mean to
Mommy, I need to go
First though I’ll pack my teddy bear
And some spare clothes
A flash light, some books and toys
And then I’ll leave
And stay outside
Maybe until it’s dark at night

And where do you plan to go
All by yourself?
Can you tell me that
Before you start on you adventure?

I’ll be just down the road
In the second court
And when it gets dark
I’ll come back home!
You just pushed me too far
This time
I have to leave
I must go right now!

Well, Tasha dear
I’m sorry too
I did not mean to hurt you
What if we try a compromise?
Let us try this idea for size
What if you go out in the front of the house?
Stay out for a while and come back inside.

All right
I think I can do that
As long as you promise
Not to hurt me like that!

Lida Berghuis
March 28th, 2004
Tasha was 8 years old at this time.

One sock on!

One sock off!

Nicholas has
One sock on
One sock off
It’s an odd image
But what stands out
Is the he doesn’t mind!

I see him walking down the hall
One sock on
One sock off
I wonder why he doesn’t
Take the other sock off
Or put the first sock on!

Asymmetry
Something odd
It catches my eyes
He is so at ease with himself

I ask him
“What happened to your sock?”
He says, “Natasha took it off!”
I am surprised that he doesn’t mind
He keeps walking
One sock on
One sock off
I keep staring at him
And wonder why
It bothers me that much
That he has only one sock on!

Lida Berghuis
February 23rd, 2004