These days, my children are my inspiration and I wrote this poem while looking at my 4 year old twin daughters' asleep in their beds. It had been an especially busy and hectic day and though they had wanted my attention, I had not given it to them and like mommy guilt tends to do, I felt the brunt of that guilt only after they were asleep. So I kissed them and whispered apologies in ears that couldn't hear and wrote this poem as a reminder to myself, lest I forget.
I don't say that I was always attentive and always available to my kids from that day on, but I do try to be there for them and if I can't I tell them a time when I can and that day stays as a hazy reminder to me.
*Note: Ammi means mother in Sinhalese, which is what my kids call me.
She looks up at me with eagerness,
“Ammi, come look!
I drew a pretty picture,
It’s my favourite person, it’s you.”
Suddenly, she’s beside me,
From the throes of her play
Hugging my leg too tight,
Distractedly I say
“Baby, you’ll make us both fall
I love you, now go on”
By their soft little ones,
My face is full of kisses,
From two sticky little mouths.
One day soon though, things will change,
I will no longer be the brightest star in their range.
Time takes it’s toll and roles will reverse,
I will be the one begging for her attention,
“Ammi, I love you, but I’m so busy now,
I have to meet a friend, I’ll talk to you later.”
So let me always remember to make time for them now,
My daughters, my parents, the ones who care,
For change is inevitable as time marches on,
And let me never regret not being there,
For the ones who think I am the sun and the moon,
Let me show them I think of them, the same way too.
– Mayoni Ranasinghe