Little People

A little person, just like me!
I wonder what it’s like to be
Another little person who
Moves about, as I do too

I wonder if they ride in cars…
In buses, trams, or trains so fast
Do they walk down to the park?
When they sleep in bed, is it light or dark?

They have big people, just like me!
When they awake, is it these they see?
Do they enjoy a warm embrace?
As I do, when mine see my face

And what about the others here?
Who sit by us; some far, some near
They have no little person, so…
Perhaps I’ll go and say hello

Gina Marie

Oh, Mother of Mine

Mum wedding day


Oh, mother of mine

Whose love, so divine

Was comfort to all

Whenever we’d call

Inviting us in

After thought or at whim

Grace and mercy all round

Loving arms to surround

Providing tastes to delight

Waiting up in the night

Home and clothing so clean

Diligence gone unseen

Growing gardens of flowers

Beholding beauty was ours

Grace was personified

In your life, now glorified

A piece of us left with you

When to Christ’s feast you flew

What joy it will be

When greets us, Saviour and thee


I love you Mum, my mum

Dad and Mum wedding day


Grandmothers are for loving

And for cooking and for worrying

Sleeping over, cuddling

Baking scones and making dolls again

They have pools and veges growing

Stay over New Year’s, saucepans banging

Taking photos, lots of bragging

When they’re gone, our hearts are dragging


Thanks for all the joy of learning

Thanks for all the fun; now yearning

Hope I’ll be to my own dear ones

Just as precious as my grandmums


Nanny and Grandma




Soz, Mum

Mum, I know that I’m not talking

To you as I used to do

When I was so much smaller

And I used to hug you too

But if you can just be patient

Till my brain and body grow

Once again I’ll want your wisdom

And maybe kiss you as I go


I know that when I’m angry

And you don’t know what to say

That I make you quite unhappy

So it’s hard for us to stay

In our home and be together

When I’m sad and all withdrawn

Staying in my room, behind the door

Even with the curtains drawn


But one day I’ll emerge from all

The darkness, out and in

Our communication slowly

Will no doubt begin again

I’ll be thankful that I have you

In my life to walk beside

Now I’m grown and we are family

And as friends, to love in life




A Day For Mums

Oh mother, don’t you worry

Don’t you fret and don’t you frown

When your little ones are tiny

And you’re still in your dressing gown

Take a nap when they are napping

Though you’re tempted still to work

It will make your times together

A little brighter, less berserk!


Keep a space where there’s no washing

No ironing, toys or mess

A place free to sit and wonder

Read, listen, watch; or just to rest

Take a walk outside with bubba

Stroll along in air and sun

Breathe in deeply; hear the birdsong

When you’re ready, maybe run


If someone offers to assist you

Say, “Thank you, yes please, do!”

If none will offer, find one wiling

To lend a hand to you

It’s a lie that we believe,

The lie we’re meant to go alone

Community or family help us

Our mother-skills to hone


One day the weariness that drains you

Will be eased, with much more sleep

Your little ones will slowly start

Independently to creep

They’ll eat with you and walk with you

And eventually they’ll run

All at once you’ll look around you

To see how far you both have come





Catch me, catch me, if you can

I think I’ll run too fast.

I’m bigger, stronger quicker now,

Than when you chased me last.

Chase me, chase me, ‘round and ‘round

I’ll laugh and laugh out loud.

And if you catch me up this time

Me, your arms can wrap around.

Sit me, sit me on your lap

And read to me a while.

I’ll read the words that I have learnt

Since we snuggled here last time.

Rock me, stroke my tired head,

My pillow will be sweet.

But let me stay here close to you

‘Til I’m drifting, drifting – sleep.


Miscommunication and Misconceptions

Written in braille and stuck to our kitchen wall is a comment written by my youngest while she was in the 5th grade. It was part of a book response, I believe, and reads as follows:

Sometimes we can misunderstand things and assume things that might not be the truth. But you can overcome those things by talking about it with other people and making sure you don’t assume things too often because what you think is happening might not be true.

Having blind children leads to lots of misconception and miscommunication – some because of intentional ignorance, some because of a lack of information or real-life experiences. A few are disheartening, most are  amusing, and some downright hilarious! We laugh about the disability in our family because it is a normal part of our life (though not our life in its entirety). My children are not offended by the word ‘blind’, because they are blind; their vision is not impaired, they have no vision and this is normal for them. They do not feel as though they are ‘missing out’ on things they have never experienced, and their father and I have always endeavoured to do our best to engage them in as many experiences as we can. I have no desire in this post to share the disheartening (though that may come another time), but here are some of the humourous – with my mostly-grown-children’s permission.

Our youngest was 3 years old and did not want to ride on the shuttle-bus at Australia Zoo in Queensland, crying almost hysterically and shaking somewhat. She had spent the day with our new friend, not wanting anything to do with old familiar family members, but suddenly HAD to be with me. It wasn’t until we had driven off a little way that I had a thought and told her that we were not going into space; it was not that kind of shuttle but more like a tractor with carriages. The crying stopped and she instantly desired to go back to the new friend. 

This same child a couple of years later was in our new vehicle with siblings, myself and an uncle taking the new car for a ‘spin’. While looking around the back of her seat she found a button (for folding down the back rest giving access to the boot/trunk) and asked what it was for. The accommodating uncle said it was the ejector seat button and immediately the tears started to flow until she was informed that the car did not have an ejector seat.

The eldest has recently had his first sky diving experience, which he loved. I wonder how I knew that he would…

At the age of about 5 years, Mr. fell from his top bunk bed. It took a number of seconds before tears began to fall and when I asked what he thought when he fell, he responded with, “I liked it when I was going through the air, but not when I hit the floor!”

A couple of years earlier, perhaps age 3 years, I was cleaning at one end of the house when he and is first sister were playing in the living area. His sister could not crawl or move about independently as yet. I was constantly venturing out to their space to respond to his sister’s whimpers but whenever I arrived, there was nothing going on and she was alone. Eventually I decided not to leave but stand in my place silently for a few minutes. Mr. 3 year old came running out of the laundry, clapped his sister on the head with both hands, and subsequently ran back to the laundry. When his name was announced with volume and intensity, he responded with, “What!” I asked why he hit his sister, “I didn’t,” he responded. I then explained to him that I was standing in the room and saw him do it. He was in fact ‘in trouble’ but I was in stitches.

Miss in the middle has given/experienced much consternation! Here are a couple.

As a Miss 5, she with the rest of us were going to experience the ferry across Port Phillip Bay, Melbourne. She was very concerned about the car-carrying boat tipping over and depositing us all in the water, where there may be sharks. We were informed my a member of the crew that even if the ferry sank, the roof wouldn’t be submerged but someone was not convinced. The day before our trip, as cars were being driven aboard, we were allowed to walk onto the bottom deck to see how much the boat would rock. We were then ok to travel. Whew!

One of the best stories though, was when she was somewhat older but only by a few short years and entered the bathroom where dad had finished his bath after sowing crops in the paddock. She found little balls on the floor and was distressed about the headband she believed had broken, and picked a few ‘beads’ up asking dad to fix it for her. His response? They were not beads but dried urea (which had to be explained – ask a farmer), and were very quickly dropped again.

Laugh out loud! It’s good for your heart, body, soul, spirit, family, relationships, work, attitude…just laugh a lot. If you can’t find your laugh switch, and I know what that is like, look for someone who can find it for you…and thank them. 

Learning From Children

One of the best books I have read about having children with a disability is ‘Lessons I Learned From My Child’. I have loaned it to a friend and can’t remember the authors at present, but it was written by a psychologist, and parents, with parent stories for illustration. It was published in New Zealand and takes you through the process/stages of grief when there is disability in the family.

The ‘lesson’ I most appreciated from the book was that when there is disability in one’s family, especially a child, grief is usually perpetual. Death is an event, and although the pain and loss is revisited throughout life in varying degrees and hopefully with decreased intensity, the event has passed. When a child has a disability grieving events keep coming; milestones reached late or not at all, life experiences not to be had or that show up ‘difference’…I appreciated this the most because I learned that my grief was normal even in these circumstances, and I know that grief needs to be experienced – allowed – in order to process through it regardless of how many times I face this process. My recent, and not-yet-complete, journey through a grief of another kind confirms this to be true, as does much research.

I have learned many other lessons from and because of my children also. As a result of needing input from physiotherapists, occupational therapists, speech therapists, early childhood educators and specialist teachers, orientation and mobility instructors (and often doing these things alongside families with myriad disabilities),  I have learned much about the human body, mind, soul and spirit. I have learned much about the impact of each of these on the other; the impact of relationships on the individual and vice-versa; the impact of the inner self on development, interaction, attitude, influence…

From my children specifically, I have learned not to be afraid (though I often still am). My children have taught me what it is to accept myself, because they do that of themselves. As their parent, I have learned that as one of their primary care-givers and instructors, I contribute to who they are but I do not entirely make them who they are. The uniqueness of every individual is beautiful, mysterious, challenging, enlightening, confusing and a wonder to me.

There is so much in others that I wish to be a part of me. Some of these things I can learn and develop, but some are not mine to have. They belong with someone else as parts of me are mine alone, and I need to be ok with that. To be reverently made is a wonderful truth.

Embrace yourself and those around you, making each of us more of a wonder – daily.