You think, “How could a parent ever have a favourite child?” Well, I wondered the same thing, and I remember a moment of panic when I first saw this poem printed out and taped to my parents’ refrigerator door. Was I their favourite? Or was it one of my four older siblings? Nervously I read it, at first disturbed by the idea that there could be a favourite. But when I actually read right through to the end, then I understood the point.
Every mother has a favourite child. She cannot help it. She is only human. I have mine, the child whom I feel a special closeness, with whom I share a love that no one else could possibly understand.
My favourite child is the one who was too sick to eat ice cream at his birthday party….who had measles at Christmas….who wore leg braces to bed because he toed in. She was the fever in the middle of the night, the asthma, the child in my arms at the Emergency ward.
My favourite child spent Christmas alone away from the family, was stranded after the game with a gas tank on E, lost the money for his class ring.
My favourite child is the one who messed up the piano recital, misspelled “committee” in a spelling bee, ran the wrong way with the football and had his bike stolen because he was careless.
My favourite child is the one I punished for lying, grounded for insensitivity to other people’s feelings, and informed that he was a royal pain to the entire family.
My favourite child slammed doors in frustration, cried when she didn’t think I saw her, withdrew and said he could not talk to me.
My favourite child always needed a hair cut, had hair that wouldn’t curl, had no date for Saturday night and a car that cost $600 to fix.
My favourite child was selfish, immature, bad-tempered and self-centred. He was vulnerable, lonely, unsure of what she was doing and quite wonderful.
All mothers have their favourite child. It is always the same one; the one who needs you at the moment. Who needs you for whatever reason–to cling to, to shout at, to hurt, to hug, to flatter, to reverse charges to, to unload on–but mostly just to be there.
Here’s all our kids together, taken about 2 years ago. It’s hard to find a pic with all 9 of them in it now that they are maintaining several ‘homes’ apart from Mom & Dad. But I’d say, each and every one of them has been “My Favourite” at multiple times over the years, for various reasons.