When I’m Gone

This poem started as a letter I wrote to my oldest son when his little brother arrived, quite unexpectedly to him. Life changed drastically in his safe little world, and I found my one-on-one time with him shorten abruptly. I tried so hard to explain why Mama was running around frantically and couldn’t always sit and give him 100% of my attention anymore, but his little mind had such a hard time comprehending why, sometimes leading us both to tears. As I usually do, to console myself I sat down to write about how I was feeling – unheard and so misunderstood by the little person I loved most in the world –  and these words came out. They are my deepest feelings about the little boy who stole my heart, and I wasn’t sure if I could share them with the world. But then I decided I wanted to – for every parent who feels spread thin; those of us struggling to keep it all together, and wish they could say the words and communicate to their little ones who can’t understand them yet, that our intentions are good and we will always be there for them – always. And for anyone dealing with the gradual and natural separation between parent and child that happens as children grow up, and as we grow older – this one’s for you, too.

My Post (5)

When I’m Gone

When I’m gone,

It’s to get your bottle a little bit warmer; I promise I’ll be back soon.

When I’m gone,

It’s to get you the red one; it was selfish to suggest using the blue spoon.

When I’m gone,

It’s because I desperately need a shower; I promise I won’t take too long.

When I’m gone,

(Oh wait, you came into the bathroom; I guess while I pee I can sing you a song.)

When I’m gone,

It’s because you need your favorite race car, I think you left it upstairs.

When I’m gone,

It’s to run and look in the mirror, and quickly wipe boogers out of my hair.

When I’m gone,

It’s because laundry needs doing, and you need your fuzzy blue blanket to sleep.

When I’m gone,

Don’t worry, I’m right next door, sneaking into the bed trying not to make a peep.

When I’m gone,

It’s because your dinner needs making; be patient, I swear it will be finished soon.

When I’m gone,

It’s to run and change your brothers bum; he’s already pooped 3 times before noon.

When I’m gone,

It’s because I have to go work; I do this so you have everything that you need.

When I’m gone,

I’m just under your bed, looking for the exact bedtime book that I know we must read.

When I’m gone,

It’s to get the things we need for the home; you’ll enjoy all of it, I swear.

When I’m gone,

You’ll be mad but you need it; trust me, this ‘time out’ in your room is fair.

When I’m gone,

I will come to get you from school; it seems scary but promise I’ll always be back.

When I’m gone,

It’s to fix up your favorite things; I know just like Mama you enjoy a snack.

And as you grow older and become a man, I know that eventually you’ll go;

But when you are gone, know I’ll always be here, quietly cheering and watching you grow.

And someday, when I’m gone, I hope you will read this, and know that it isn’t the end,

I’ll never be gone, as the love for a child never leaves, it is like an old friend.

So when I’m gone,

Please try to always be kind, and don’t judge a book by its cover,

When I’m gone,

Don’t lose faith in the good of mankind; love and respect one another.

When I’m gone,

Do what makes you the happiest person, and always stay true to yourself,

When I’m gone,

Know that family, good health and great friends are life’s most priceless of wealth.

When I’m gone,

Please remember that having you in my life was the best thing to happen to me,

When I’m gone,

Know that you saved my soul, and made me the person I was meant to be.

When I’m gone,

Know you gave me purpose in life, and made me tremendously grow,

When I’m gone,

Don’t forget that you taught me more about myself than I ever thought I could know.

So if I can’t tell you this all in time; remember that in you, my dreams live on;

Know that I’ll never truly leave your side; my love will be there, with you, when I’m gone.

13 thoughts on “When I’m Gone

  1. Michell says:

    Beautiful. Motherhood is a tough gig, done right you are left with a void in your home. But unimaginable pride and everlasting love. As my youngest turned 18 this year I though now what I’m not finished, I still have so much to give and I was right! It’s just evolved into a more mature relationship. They still need their mom but in a less hands on more emotional, intellectual way. And not to brag (bragging well earned) it’s amazing to see who they’ve become and enjoy the rewards of my, labour, love and sanity.

    Like

  2. Jamnetty says:

    😭 This is so sweet. I can’t imagine all the emotions that come with baby number 2. The thought of taking time and attention away from our first little one. But I’ve heard our hearts grow and our joy doubles. Beautiful writing.

    Like

  3. Veronica says:

    Jacqueline, you could not have express better the love, understanding and compassion of a mother. This poem, It is beautifully written and resonates with all mothers in the world. Thank you for sharing.

    Like

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