Parents know that messes are inevitable. Life is messy when you have very young children and keeping a super clean home is often a huge challenge. It’s usually best to do the clean up and move on… until the next mess pops up. One mom with the heartbreaking experience of losing a child has an important message for other parents, telling them her story and reminding them to not sweat the tiny stuff.
Heather Duckworth shared her story on Facebook, titling it “The Blue Stain,” in which she explained how she had a gooey puddle of slime to tend to when her daughter accidentally let it ooze out of her hand and fall to the floor.
Her little girl tried to clean it up, but Heather stepped in to scrub the grout, becoming irritated by the task. She took a moment to refocus, however, and gained some perspective.
She reflected on a time, 14 years ago at bedtime, when the mom of two-year-old triplets and a four-year-old boy had a very busy life full of diapers and messes, playtime, hugs and kisses. She noted: “My hands were full, but so was my heart.”
Her boys were done with their evening bath and picking up the playroom before bed, dancing as they listened to music. Heather discovered a big blue stain, as one of the triplets held a pen that had exploded, the ink now everywhere – on him and the carpet. She was overcome with anger, explaining: “I instantly felt so upset as I grabbed my son and took him to the bathroom to clean him up and my husband started scrubbing those bright blue stains on our carpet. Tears of frustration stung my eyes. I was just so tired. And mad. Like really, really angry. I wasn’t mad at my son — who was as blue as a Smurf — but upset with myself for leaving that pen out where my toddler could reach it. We had only lived in this house for six months and now the carpet was completely ruined. We scrubbed that stain for an hour that night, but yet it remained.”
She hired professional cleaners and they couldn’t remove it. It was a permanent reminder that filled her with anger every time she walked by it. While the stain didn’t go away, her anger over it did, when that little boy who had been covered in blue ink was diagnosed with cancer the following month. Sadly, he passed away two years later. Suddenly, that blue ink stain took on a different meaning.
Heather explained that the stain “was a constant reminder of my son. It was a constant reminder of my frustration over something so trivial… something so unimportant in the scheme of life.”
She continued: “That blue stain was a constant reminder that life is messy, but that’s what makes it worth living. A constant reminder to not sweat the small stuff. A constant reminder that ‘things’ aren’t important, but people are. A constant reminder that accidents happen. A constant reminder to let go of the little things and hang on tight to what is important.”
Her message is clear — all of those messes don’t mean a thing, in fact “they are a blessing in disguise.” She explained she would have “a million blue ink stains on my carpet if it meant I could have one more day with my son.”