"Strength does not come from physical capacity. It comes from an indomitable will."
Mahatma Gandhi

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

A BIRTHDAY









Today is Anna's 22nd birthday.  As I say every birthday, every year, WHAT?  22?  Yes, 22.  We celebrated last night, as one of her presents were tickets to a Red Sox game at Fenway Park tonight (last check, they are winning!)













One of the presents she requested is this dear phrase stenciled onto a canvas by one of those clever Etsy artists.   I was so touched that she wanted this, as it is from a book we read to the children from a very young age.

The first time I heard the book was when Paul was in pre school and his teacher, Miss Diane, read it to the parents and students on a special day.  There was not a dry eye in the house.

Below, I've cut and pasted the text of the book, in case you aren't familiar with it.  Get out your tissues and hug your children, regardless of their ages.

The book is originally written for a boy, but since this page is for Anna's birthday, I've changed it up a bit.


by Robert Munsch

A mother held her new baby and very slowly rocked her back and forth, back and forth, back and forth. And while she held her, she sang:
I'll love you forever,
I'll like you for always,
As long as I'm living
my baby you'll be. 
The baby grew. She grew and she grew and she grew. She grew until he was two years old, and she ran all around the house. She pulled all the books off the shelves. She pulled all the food out of the refrigerator and she took her mother's watch and flushed it down the toilet. Sometimes her mother would say, "this kid is driving me CRAZY!"
But at night time, when that two-year-old was quiet, she opened the door to her room, crawled across the floor, looked up over the side of her bed; and if she was really asleep she picked her up and rocked her back and forth, back and forth, back and forth. While she rocked her she sang:
I'll love you forever,
I'll like you for always,
As long as I'm living
my baby you'll be.
The little girl grew. She grew and she grew and she grew. She grew until she was nine years old. And she never wanted to come in for dinner, she never wanted to take a bath, and when grandma visited she always said bad words. Sometimes her mother wanted to sell her to the zoo!
But at night time, when she was asleep, the mother quietly opened the door to her room, crawled across the floor and looked up over the side of the bed. If she was really asleep, she picked up that nine-year-old girl and rocked her back and forth, back and forth, back and forth. And while she rocked her she sang:
I'll love you forever,
I'll like you for always,
As long as I'm living
my baby you'll be.
The girl grew. She grew and she grew and she grew. She grew until she was a teenager. She had strange friends and he wore strange clothes and she listened to strange music. Sometimes the mother felt like she was in a zoo! 
But at night time, when that teenager was asleep, the mother opened the door to her room, crawled across the floor and looked up over the side of the bed. If she was really asleep she picked up that great big girl and rocked her back and forth, back and forth, back and forth. While she rocked her she sang:
I'll love you forever,
I'll like you for always,
As long as I'm living
my baby you'll be.
That teenager grew. She grew and she grew and she grew. She grew until he was a grown-up woman.  She left home and got a house across town. But sometimes on dark nights the mother got into her car and drove across town.  If all the lights in her daughter's house were out, she opened her bedroom window, crawled across the floor, and looked up over the side of her bed. If that great big girl was really asleep she picked her up and rocked her back and forth, back and forth, back and forth. And while she rocked her she sang:
I'll love you forever,
I'll like you for always,
As long as I'm living
my baby you'll be.
Well, that mother, she got older. She got older and older and older. One day she called up her daughter and said, "You'd better come see me because I'm very old and sick." So her daughter came to see her. When she came in the door she tried to sing the song. She sang:
I'll love you forever,
I'll like you for always...
But she couldn't finish because she was too old and sick. The daughter went to her mother. She picked her up and rocked her back and forth, back and forth, back and forth. And she sang this song:
I'll love you forever,
I'll like you for always,
As long as I'm living
my Mommy you'll be.
When the daughter went home that night, she stood for a long time at the top of the stairs. Then she went into the room where her very new baby daughter was sleeping. She picked her up in her arms and very slowly rocked her back and forth, back and forth, back and forth. And while she rocked her she sang:
I'll love you forever,
I'll like you for always,
As long as I'm living
my baby you'll be.

1 comment:

  1. One of m;y favorites! I to read that book to my girls and to my little ones at school.

    ReplyDelete

Some day, I’d like the memory of me to be a happy one, I’d like to leave an afterglow of smiles when life is done. I’d like to leave an echo whispering softly down the ways, of happy times and laughing times and bright and sunny days.