Mum explains infertility to her 7-year-old son. His response is wise beyond his years.

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For parents, talking to kids about the new baby who’ll be arriving can be a tricky conversation. But after all the preparation and excitement, what happens if the baby doesn’t arrive?

Mother-of-two and PCOS (Polyscistic Ovary Syndrome and Infertility) Support Girl social media advocate, Shelby Eckard found herself facing this challenge when her seven-year-old saw an ultrasound picture of her friend’s baby. A little baby they will never get to meet.

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In a post to her 55,000 Instagram followers, Shelby not only shared how she handled the difficult conversation many families face everyday, but the wise way her son responded.

“This morning, my 7 year old son walked in on me crying at my desk. He asked, ‘Momma, why are you crying?’,” Shelby wrote, explaining her son had seen a text message from her friend containing ultrasound images of the baby she lost.

When her son became confused about why a baby was making his mum cry – “because babies are awesome” – Shelby tackled the task of explaining infertility to a child.

This morning, my 7 year old son walked in on me crying at my desk. He asked, “momma, why are you crying?” He then caught glimpse of my screen, where I was looking at a text sent from my girlfriend, who sent an ultrasound picture of her baby. He asked, “what is that? ” I explained it was a baby, trying hard not to go any further because I’m not ready for a “where babies come from discussion.” He said, “but momma- I don’t understand. Why are you crying? Babies are awesome.” This, spawned a whole flood of tears I held back behind burning eyes. How do you explain to a 7 year old the emotions and challenges of infertility. I mustered up my strong mom voice and told him, “yes, babies ARE awesome. They make hearts happy and homes feel full and are the greatest present a person can ever get. Having a child is like looking forward to a birthday. You know the time for it is coming. And for some reason, for some, those ‘baby days’ don’t come when they’re supposed to. Or ever. And it’s like waiting on a present and not knowing if you’ll ever get it. And it can make you sad. If you were looking forward to your birthday, and it didn’t come, you’d be sad, right? And you’d be really happy when you finally got your birthday present. Mommy had to wait for your baby sister, and it was really hard. But she’s pretty awesome, right? And she was totally worth the wait. So mommy is happy when she sees her friends happy. And that’s why she works hard to help those women feel happy each day.” Later on, I couldn’t find my son. I finally walked into my bedroom, and there he was sitting on my floor, crayolas everywhere, doodling and writing. I asked him, ” what are you doing, buggy?” He said, “I want those ladies to be happy, too. I want them to get their presents. I can’t give them a baby. And I thought maybe they can borrow my sister for a little, but I can’t drive and I’d miss her. So I am drawing them pictures as presents. Maybe you can send them to them for me? When they’re sad? I don’t want them to give up. I want them to be happy.” There’s moments when I think I’m failing as a momma, but these moments? I know I’m not doing so bad. ????????

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“Having a child is like looking forward to a birthday. You know the time for it is coming. And for some reason, for some, those ‘baby days’ don’t come when they’re supposed to. Or ever,” she wrote.

“It’s like waiting on a present and not knowing if you’ll ever get it. And it can make you sad. If you were looking forward to your birthday, and it didn’t come, you’d be sad, right?”

Hours later, Shelby was intrigued to see her son working away on some drawings, surrounded by an assortment of textas and crayons.

When she asked him what he was working on, well… we’ll let this seven year old’s words speak for themselves.

LISTEN: Holly Wainwright and Andrew Daddo discuss what parents are talking about on This Glorious Mess (post continues after audio…)

“I want those ladies to be happy, too. I want them to get their presents,” he said.

“I can’t give them a baby. And I thought maybe they can borrow my sister for a little, but I can’t drive and I’d miss her. So I am drawing them pictures as presents. Maybe you can send them to them for me? When they’re sad?

“I don’t want them to give up. I want them to be happy.”

For Shelby and many other parents who often doubt whether they’ve got this whole parenting thing down, take this as confirmation your efforts are working.

Does your child surprise you with their perceptiveness?

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