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Posted in Life, Parenting | 54 comments

Last night I slowed down to a dead stop

Last night I slowed down to a dead stop

In the frenzied bath-time routine I dashed from room to room, throwing clothes in the laundry basket, handing out toothbrushes, washing hair, warming milk, taking off my make-up, preparing uniforms for the next morning.

I concentrated on the Little Man, as he’s the youngest, knowing that Curly Girl is more than capable of undressing herself and getting into the bath without my help.

But still she called me for the fifth time; “Mummy, can you help me?”

I felt frustration start to pull gently at the edges of my voice and concentrated on keeping it sing-song-calm.

“You can do it, take your vest off, pop it in the laundry, ok?” I called back, willing her to get in the bath so they wouldn’t be too late for bed on a school night.

Once the little one was in the bath I strode next door wondering what was taking her so long.

And in my daughter’s room, she sat quietly on the floor, on her knees and simply said


I stopped to look at her and realised something. That at THAT moment, she might have been the oldest, but she WANTED to be the youngest. She WANTED that help, that time with me, my attention, my time.

So I helped her get undressed and I held out my arms to her and said

“Do you want to be a baby for a few minutes?”

She lept into my chest and held on tight like a koala, repeating “Mama” over and over again with such relief and joy it sprung tears into my eyes.

We walked into the bathroom and I sat down on the closed loo seat, her still clinging to me and we just snuggled, her head on my shoulder, her lips on my neck.

My husband wandered past the door and glanced in looking puzzled.

“What’s she doing?” he asked.

“Hugging.” I said, simply.

After a few moments she lifted her head and watched her brother playing in the bath.

“I’m ready to get in the bath now,” she said. And I gently lifted her in.

I’d slowed down. The rest of the evening continued as normal.

In the bath

And then in some strange moment of kismet this morning I read this followed immediately by this. It wasn’t a flash, bang, immediately-everything-started-to-make-sense-to-me moment. I KNOW I do too much, rush too much, fill my days, my to-do list, my life. I balance on a knife edge, almost falling, righting myself.

I DO need to slow down.

But I’ll admit that I’m not ready yet.

In the meantime I’m going to try to slow down just once a day. To actually listen. To spend a moment longer in that hug. To let my children be the children that THEY need to be.

Are you ready to slow down?

Linking up with Brilliant Blog Posts at Honest MumPost Comment Love at Verily Victoria VocalisesThe B&W Photography Project at PODcastWelcome to the Weekend at Claire Justine, Magic Moments at The Olivers Madhouse and Ordinary Moments at Mummy Daddy Me


  1. I was sure I commented on this beautiful post last week, but cannot see my comment! It is so good to remind ourselves to really be present in the moment – yoga is all about this – and especially with our little ones. We race along at such a pace, and sometimes we need to switch everything off and just. Take. Time. Lovely post Michelle, so happy to have had you join us for #allaboutyou
    Mama and More aka Zaz recently posted…

  2. I’ve been thinking about this a lot today, Michelle. Firstly, you took something that could have been lost, forgotten and washed away with the bath water and wrote it in to such a beautiful post. Secondly, slowing down…hmmm, it’s difficult. I’m naturally a bit of a laid back soul. I tend to do things on demand (I’m trying to make new rituals with the housework, etc, even with All About You by commenting on 10 a day rather than 50 the night before the next one!!) and my mind doesn’t tend to plan especially well, so I’m often in the moment rather than thinking about what I have to do next (I really shouldn’t drink that last glass of wine as I have a busy day tomorrow!) but as a result it means the next morning, for example, is crazy busy trying as I’ve not made packed lunches or got everything needed for rucksacks, etc. It’s a constant chasing my tail that results ultimately in horribly busy patches and stress! I have no answers…just sharing my version of events!

    Thank you for linking up to #AllAboutYou xxx

    • Awww thanks so much for your lovely comment Hannah. It is difficult to find that balance. I fully admit that I’m really not ready to completely slow down – there’s too much I want to do, to achieve, but I know now too that I need to carve out a moment in each day to just be the Mum that my kids need me to be x

  3. Oh wow, such a lovely post

  4. I do find that sometimes I’m in such a hurry and am so impatient, and I have to remember that children run on a different schedule. They need time. And so do I. #allaboutyou

  5. I can *really* relate to this hon. My 5yo is very demanding, but i’m coming to realise it’s because she’s so sensitive. If I ask my 2yo to wait while I’m dealing with the baby she is fine, but it can bring on epic tantrums from my eldest.

    It’s sometimes good to just grind to a halt and immerse yyourself in giving the kids the love and attention they are desperate for, but often have to wait too long for while you try and do everything else Fab post xx

    • This post really seems to have resonated with a lot of us… we’re so busy ‘doing’ that sometimes it’s easy to forget to just ‘be’. Thanks for your lovely comment x

  6. Ahhhh this is lovely!! I AM SO guilty of this, getting frustrated a bit too quickly because I know he’s capable. I think we are always in so much of a rush we want to just be ahead of ourselves all the time. I must slow down a lot more I think!

    • That’s it exactly! Just because they ARE capable doesn’t mean they don’t need the reassurance, the time and opportunity just to be little again x

  7. wow Michelle i need to take a leaf out of your book big time! what a really beautiful moment and a really lovely post

    thanks for linking up with #MagicMoments

  8. It is good you are aware of the need to slow down and enjoy the moment. Most of us don’t, rushing through life like trains towards a destination and missing out so many halts…Good on you, I am sure she will treasure the memory forever. #MagicMoments

    • Hi Oana, you’re so right and thanks for commenting. (Can you pop your web address in the reply so I can pop over and say hi too?)


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