One of the many things I love doing with you is reading. Real books. Not just on the iPad or Kindle. I have started collecting books for you, and love it when I get them on sale, from work or as gifts.
One of my all-time favourite authors is Dr Seuss. The guy is a genius and when I bought a set of eight of his books just after you were born, I was secretly buying them for myself as well. So while they sit on your bookshelf, I read them often. It’s hard reading this book to you because your little paws want to tear the pages so I’ve gotten smart – I give you the hardcover almost indestructible (at last count anyway) picture books, while I read from Dr Seuss.
One of my favourite Dr Seuss books is Oh The Places You’ll Go! It’s seriously one of the most beautiful and wise books, and more powerful than The Secret, The Seven Habits, The Power of Now and every other self-help book I’ve bought. This is therapy in a beautifully illustrated to-the-point and smart book, and one every kid – and his parent – should read. I read it to you when you were just a few weeks old, and I wept every time I read it (in part because my boobs were a little sore, and because I was resting the book on my flabby post-birth tummy, which hasn’t really gone down since).
Some of my favourite lines include:
“You have brains in your head
You have feet in your shoes
You can steer yourself
Any direction you choose”
“And when things start to happen,
don’t worry. Don’t stew.
Just go right along.
You’ll start happening too.”
“You won’t lag behind, because you’ll have the speed.
You’ll pass the whole gang and you’ll soon take the lead.
Wherever you fly, you’ll be the best of the best.
Wherever you go, you will top all the rest.
“You’ll get mixed up, of course,
as you already know.
You’ll get mixed up
with many strange birds as you go.
So be sure when you step.
Step with care and great tact
and remember that Life’s
a Great Balancing Act.
Just never forget to be dexterous and deft.
And never mix up your right foot with your left”.
Max, I wish I could protect you from all of life’s hurts, and all the kak out there. I wish I could make sure your path is always well and safely paved. But as moms and Dr Seuss know, regardless of how hard we try to protect, there’ll be bang-ups, hang-ups, lurches and slumps. And I’ll try make it better with lift-ups, hug-ups, kisses and fixing of humps.
Watch your way in the world, and I will too. “Today is your day! Your mountain is waiting. So… get on your way!”