I found this journal entry.
I wrote it in 1984.
One day before my nineteenth birthday.
(oh, stop doing the math!)
Obviously, the family I babysat for,
Made quite an impression.
‘Katrika goes to bed at 7:30.
First the story and snack;
Brush the teeth, jump into the pj’s,
And she is all set for the night.
She loves for me to lie with her.
Only the light from the hall filters into her room.
As her eye lids grow heavy,
I stroke the hair away from her face.
At the head of her bed,
The shooting star of bright colors rests.
An ancient, lovable monkey,
With barely any strength left,
To hold his weak body upright,
Slouches, on the headboard.
How beautiful it is to have an artist for a father.
The award winning painting,
Of her as a baby, in an open field,
Stands tall above her dresser.
Catching the first glance
Of each pair of eyes that enter the room.
Cuddly, soft, stuffed animals,
Sit like statues on her shelf,
Bringing in the warmth of childhood.
There’s the puzzle
Her daddy helped her complete.
Ask her anything about it
And she will proudly say, ‘My Daddy helped’.
Below the puzzle,
An old fashioned phone sits waiting,
For a curious ear to lift it up.
Surprise! It sings a song instead.
Neatly arranged pictures,
Of all those that matter most to her,
Stand proudly on the next shelf.
Her little best friend
Her sometimes best sister
And of course, Mommy and Daddy.
Katrika’s eyes are closed now.
The familiar breath of sleep
Comes faintly from her little face.
Gently, I pull her favourite book,
Out from under her warm arm.
Her bottom shelf is overrun with famous stories.
But, I know there is room for this special one.
I pull the blankets up around her
And grin at Woody Woodpecker,
Looking blankly back at me.
Lovingly, I kiss her forehead,
Feeling her smooth skin against my lips
Sleep gently little one.’
All safe in bed below the ceiling of stars.
Security, wraps it up,
With ‘I Love you’s’ written above.
See you next time I come Katrika.
And don’t forget, I love you too.
I smile to myself as I leave her
And shut the ‘waterfall’ door behind me.
More from living