Reading aloud to my kids is one of my favorite bonding activities with my children. It has helped me form a special bond with my eldest son, Yanthy, who is now three years old. Reading with me has been one of the activities he looks forward to growing up. He loves to sit on my lap or lie down beside me as we read in bed or in an armchair. I also discovered that it is one of the best ways he learns from me.
So, armed with these lessons and experiences, I read aloud to my newborn baby, Mateo. He has also shown appreciation for our reading sessions as early as now. He responds to me by cooing and smiling, sometimes laughing, as I read to him stories from different children’s books. Reading aloud to them therefore is one of the things I planned to do with my children to we celebrate Mother’s Day last Sunday. Armed with my list of recommended books, we went to the bookstore for our search of the best book for our mother-child bonding. I planned to buy at least one from my list. True enough, only one book from my list was available at Powerbooks Megamall branch when we went there last Sunday afternoon.
I was disappointed at first when I found out that only one book from my long list of recommended books was available. I soon discovered why when we got home and I was able to read on my own before reading it to my kids.
The book I bought last Sunday for our Mother’s Day reading and bonding time was LOVE YOU FOREVER. It tells the story of a mom who consistently showed her love for her child from the time that he was still a baby until he grew to be a man with his own family. It also showed the challenges encountered by the mom as her child grew older from being a toddler to a teenager.
I was teary eyed as I read the book the first time. I could relate to the mom when she was dealing with her son during his toddler years. What moved me the most was how she showed her steadfast love and faithfulness to her son in spite of all the troubles, problems, headaches and heartaches through the years. I felt God challenging me to be this kind of mom to my children especially to my eldest son who is now three years old. I love my eldest son very much but he sometimes “drives me crazy” in the words of the mom in the story. At the end of the day though, I still would love to cuddle with him and tell him I love him before he goes to sleep.
I read the book to my sons with my husband. I thank God for the inspiration my husband gave by singing the song portion of the story to the tune of Barney’s “I love you” song. Yesterday, I already heard my little boy sing the song as he played with his baby brother. I was amazed at how fast he has learned it considering that I only read it to him twice. I can’t remember the lines well yet but he does.
Then, last night, as we read in bed once more. I felt peace in my heart as I read and rocked my sons “back and forth, back and forth, back and forth.” I felt God tell me that He chose that book for me and my sons this Mother’s Day so I would be inspired to follow in that mom’s footsteps and so that my eldest son would know that whatever happens, like the mom in the story, I will love him forever. This is a very timely message to my eldest son because although his baby brother has been with us for six months now, he is still acting up every now and then. I guess he’s still dealing with the mixed emotions that he feels for having a younger sibling that lessens somehow my time with him. I was glad that we found this book at this time. Through the story, my eldest son will learn that he will always be my baby even when he grows up to be a big boy, a teenager and eventually into a man. I pray that both of us will learn our lessons from this simple book filled with beautiful images of mother and son bonding. Now, I know why this book had good reviews from many readers. You may click here to read more about it, including reviews of other readers, from Amazon.com.
Let me end by sharing with you the ten (10) books in my list in alphabetical order. I still plan to go to other bookstores to find these books in the future. I hope I can find copies of them at the most perfect time, at the time that God ordains me and my children to learn the lessons from these wonderful books. In case you find any of these books in a bookstore in Manila, kindly let me know by sending me a message so I too can get a copy.
2. God Gave Us You by Lisa Tawn Bergren and Laura J. Bryant.
4. I Love My Mommy by Sebastien Braun
5. Just Me and My Mom by Mercer Mayer
6. My Mommy and Me by Tina Macnaughton
7. Love You Forever: The Best of Robert Munsch
8. Mommy Carry Me Please by Jane Cabrera.
9. Snuggle Puppy by Sandra Boynton
10. Someday by Alison McGhee and Peter H. Reynolds.
Happy reading and happy bonding with your kids! Because every day is Mother’s Day when you spend it loving the child God blessed you with.