Children grow up way too fast. Just ask any mum, especially one celebrating a child’s birthday. Come and share these beautiful stories about just how quickly life moves and how we can all learn to slow down and appreciate what matters.
Today my daughter turned three. I’m not sure how this is even possible, considering it feels like only a couple of hours ago I was rocking her to sleep and smelling her newborn head. But, somehow, in between the chaotic mornings, the all-night colds, the toilet training terrors, the “I love you mummys”, she grew out of being my baby.
And now I have a little girl.
She was showered with a flurry of Frozen items – hats, dresses, dolls, pillows, books, figurines. And one special present from her Nana. We opened it last and together. It was a handmade quilt, made by my own grandmother, who sewed together dozens of different blocks with letters, numbers and patterns on them. It was the same quilt that lived on my wall for my entire childhood, the same one that I still look at every time I visit my mum on those rare occasions back home.
And now it has a new home. On my daughter’s wall, 13,000 kilometres from where it started.
I remember this quilt so well. To this day, I can almost recall every pattern in my sleep. I remember going through the different letters and numbers, and choosing my favourite patterns. I remember, as I got older, looking for different words in the quilt before closing my eyes.
Nana couldn’t be with us to open it. And neither could my Grammie, who passed away several years ago. But, as I sat with my daughter on the bed, I told her the story about how Mummy’s grandma made it for Mummy. How Mummy helped picked out the patterns, how Mummy loved playing with the sewing kit and choosing the different colours of thread. How Mummy used to sit on her bed, admiring the patchwork with my Grammie by my side.
I explained all of this to my daughter, who gently held the quilt in between her fingertips, who pointed to one of the blocks and said that was her favourite, who told me that she found the T (it was a J, but, never mind).
Memories are often passed down through our possessions. As minor or insignificant as they may seem, they tell a story. It is these stories that are worth cherishing. This is why State Trustees have started their beautiful Cherished Things campaign, a series of real, heart-warming videos that will put things into perspective.
My daughter will grow bored of her Elsa doll and her Anna hat. Her Frozen blanket will most likely be replaced by another Princess next year. But that quilt will remain above her bed, like it did mine, for years to come. And I hope that the story I told her tonight will remain with her forever.
This is what Cherished Things is all about – sharing memories with the ones who matter the most. It’s up to us as parents to ensure that these moments and stories are the ones that are treasured for generations to come.
If you could pass down one thing to your child, what would it be?
(This is a sponsored post for State Trustees)