Two weeks ago I shared a picture in The Motherload® Facebook group of my son’s hand and mine, with hearts drawn on our palms, telling the story of how I tried to help him feel better about going to school with a ‘hug button‘. I never imagined it would have such a positive impact and never imagined it would travel the world – I’m still in shock!
This whole experience has been amazing – I’ve laughed and cried and I’ve never been as popular as I have in the last fortnight! When I first wrote the ‘hug button’ post, I was thinking “look at the lengths we mums go to to keep our children happy and calm” – I never set out for fame or fortune and I never thought it would touch people in the way it has.
I’ve been asked by many people – “why do you think people have responded the way they have?” And my answer is simply that starting school is one of the biggest milestones a parent and a child will go through together. The child is full of emotion and apprehension at leaving their parent every day and going into a big new building with new adults. The parent is also full of emotion and are expected to just let their baby go for six hours every day. You have to accept that your child will be turning to someone else when they scrape their knee or bang their head and that their little minds will be bursting with knowledge of things that someone other than you has taught them.
It’s not easy.
I needed that hug button just as much as Max did.
We have both now come to terms with the big change, Max doesn’t ask for a hug button anymore but knows that if he needs a hug I’ll still get his secret message. He’s happy to go into school and is thriving, reading at a level a year above his and he is phenomenal with numbers. Best of all every day he goes into school with a smile and comes out with a smile. Every single day. And do you know what? I did that! I didn’t dismiss his fears, I helped him to feel safe and secure at a time when he was feeling most vulnerable. Even better than that, by writing about it on The Motherload®, which helped take the story around the world, I’ve hopefully helped thousands of other parents and children get over this hurdle and come out winning.
THANK YOU MOLOs for the likes and shares of the hug button. The Motherload® community is just fantastic, I’m so honoured to be a part of it. Us mums have to stick together!
I’ve received so many heartfelt messages of thanks, many of which have moved me to tears and I want to share some of them with you:
Hey there, I just wanted you to know that I tried your heart method with my baby girl. She is 4 and had to start daycare as I’m back in school. We usually spend all day together and then I work nights. She’s been having a super tough time adjusting to not seeing me as much as am I. It super sucks! However I tried your heart thing 2 days ago and she didn’t cry when I left daycare, instead she held where I drew her heart, same when I’ve gone to work these last 2 days. She’ll start to cry and freak out and I’ll just say “oh I better draw our hearts” and she nods and stops crying and then we “Charge” them and she smiles and we snuggle and then I can go. I just want to thank you so much from the bottom of my heart !! You’ve put both our anxiety about being a part to a minimum. I can’t tell you how much it brightens my day to look down and see her little heart on my hand too! Thank you, thank you thank You!! You seriously have changed our lives!
That is beautiful and brought tears to my eyes. What a clever mummy you are.
After seeing this yesterday I tried it this morning with my son. He started school last week and had cried at all four previous drop offs. This morning he and my other son both had their special hug hearts and they told me they could feel them charging whilst we were holding hands on the way in. He then ran into school happily and also didn’t cry at lunchtime after having to leave his big brother! Thank you so so much for posting this Louise!
This is literally the most adorable thing I’ve read in a long time. That’s an amazing idea and I’m stealing it in case I need it when my son starts school! You’re an amazing mum!
Thank you so much for this idea. My daughter has sobbed every day going into reception. We both have hearts today and she really loved the idea. It made such a difference to our morning.
Our hug button gets charged up every day. Monday starts week four and the tears are still flowing but the hug button has absolutely made things better. A few of my friends sent me or tagged me in this article – I thank you!
That’s inspirational! And I don’t even know you! An amazing story and a genius idea which I plan to steal with my little ones!
Since Louise shared her gorgeous post with The Motherload® and we shared it with you, this post has gone viral! Thousands of parents have read and shared this article and it’s been covered by the media here – here’s the article in Mail Online, The Sun Metro and Huff Post and on BBC Look East it’s even been reported in the United States on the HuffPost US Disney’s Babble, Good Housekeeping US and on Scary Mommy and Louise’s hug button has even made it as far as New Zealand, Belgium, Brazil, Germany and Australia and Asia. Amazing! We are so thrilled that Louise’s brilliant, simple idea is reaching so many parents and children.
Mother of three tiny humans, care-giver to the little and large of the bunny world and adopter of one Romanian rescue street dog. Lover of naughty food, hater of exercise. Mainly communicates via inappropriate memes.