Bowhead whales are big. Check. Check.

Whale lovers and fans of Octonauts will, I’m sure, already know that Bowhead whales are big. You may also know that the Artic is where they live. These are just some of the wonderful things I am learning with George. Every day, my little boy tells me something new he’s learned. Often they are things that I knew already but there’s plenty in-between that in the course of growing up I seem to have forgotten. There’s always a chance that I never found out the first time round. mamma-plays-guitar

But that’s the best bit. With George I get to go back and learn all over again. I can press pause on the adulting administration machine and instead immerse myself in the interesting things in life, like music and literature. I can play hide and seek in history and go exploring in geography. I can find out how big a Stegosaurus was, what it ate for dinner and what its favourite television programme was. I can read ‘Oi Frog’ in my best Ray Winstone accent, pretend my paintings are like Jackson Pollock’s and sing songs in public whenever it suits me.

You see, I have the best teacher there is. And he’s always there to inspire me and to remind me that those things I sometimes spend too long doing (or worrying about) when he’s in bed are really not that important or indeed half as fun as the adventures we go on together when he’s awake. George has taught me to spend more time doing the things I love, the things that interest me and make me who I am. And, just as important, he’s taught me not to worry about what I might look like, or how or if I might fail. Of course, he’s reflecting back at me all the lessons I am teaching him and there’s no better way to reinforce those lessons by practising them yourself.

This year, I have taught myself to play guitar (badly), I’ve read more books and had the confidence to say ‘no’ when being asked to do something I didn’t want to do or had no time for. Without the guilt that I so often used to feel. And my life is so much richer for it.

Thank you to the greatest teacher of all, Master George Harris. Instead of worrying about not sending out those change of address cards this evening, I will be navigating a ship through the icy waters of the Artic, in search of a Bowhead whale. I’ll tell you how I got on when you wake up.

Love your best student, Mamma x

 

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Joanne Harris

Hi, I'm Joanne (Jo) Harris, also known as Little Mamma Jo. As well as going on plenty of adventures with my son, George, I am the digital communications manager at UCL.

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