As part of 5 Minute Friday, I am supposed to blog for 5 minutes on a word prompt given by the blogger at KateMotaung.com who hosts the writing activity. My routine is to do this on my prep period at work. I set my timer and I go. Timer is set. Here we go:
My babies don’t know how to whisper. Well I take that back. Only in a couple of situations can they whisper. When we read the last page of “Good Night Moon” when it says, “Good night noises, everywhere.” I whisper that line and they love it. They whisper with me with big eyes and big smiles before closing the books and snuggling up in their sheets. It is a warm connection I can have with them before we go to sleep.
This morning, Benjamin woke up happily at 6 AM, calling “Daddy, Daddy, Daddy” and tapping his sleeping shoulders.
“Shhhhhhh” Owen kept saying.
But Benny wouldn’t. Benny was ready to get up and doesn’t understand the purpose of using a whisper voice in the wee hours of the morning when everyone is asleep–to speak and connect with us, without the sleeping others hearing.
But later, he rushed to me when I came out of the bathroom where I was discreetly putting on makeup and brushing my teeth, listening to him talk Owen into putting on the Elmos show —
“Mommy!” he called loudly.
“Shhhhhh” I whispered, “We need to whisper. Everyone is asleep.”
He reached up his arms eagerly, showing me he wanted a hug. I bent down and pressed his little body onto my big, 8-month-pregnant belly, and I rocked him.
And then he whispered his favorite phrase in these special moments: “baby Mommy, Mommy baby.”
I love it when he whispers that. I hear, “I love you” in those words. I feel so connected to him in those moments, like an invisible umbilical cord still connects us.
Today as I write this, I sit in the back of this classroom filled with teenagers with special needs. There are 5 teachers in this room with 20 students. These teens with down syndrome and severe learning disabilities, and various physical disabilities as well, clearly look different as they learn to fill out job applications and how to add up grocery receipts, but are so happy and kind and eager to greet me when I come in and ask questions about my belly as they play with their hair or rock in their chairs. Like children. And I wonder how many other teenagers, whisper when they walk by–closely connecting with their friends nearby but never trying to connect with these people because they are different. Never get close enough to whisper in their ears their secrets or compliments. How many whispering sounds do these people hear when they walk through the halls, without knowing the words? How many eyes avert away and disconnect?
Whispers…we connect with people we whisper to. How I want all whispers to be out of love, and nothing more.