PARENTING CONFESSION: 'I hide in the bushes and spy on my son.'

I never thought I’d be THAT parent. Hovering in the bushes to make sure my kid isn’t playing alone. Sharing a million photos of my child on social media.

And then it happened. I had a son and suddenly he became the centre of my universe. The coolest human being I’d ever met and my greatest achievement. 

Suddenly I went from cringing when my friends would post photos of their children incessantly... to doing it myself. I. COULD. NOT. STOP.

I assumed that if I thought his forceps-bruised, spud-like head was the cutest thing in the world, naturally everyone else would agree.

As he grew older, that maternal pride grew stronger, to the point where I simply could not see any faults in this perfect human being I had grown.

I remember my brother and sister gently alluding to the fact that my son might have a lazy eye. Totally indignant, I gave it to them and told them that was utter nonsense.

Image: Supplied.


Now that he’s eight (and the eye has corrected itself), I look back on the photos and can see what they meant. But I could not see it at the time. My overwhelming love for my kid just wouldn’t allow me to.

I’ll never forget the first time a couple of little girls were unpleasant to my son in the playground. He was almost two and was trying to play dolls with them. 

I hid behind a tree like a lion stalking its prey and watched, my heart breaking into a million pieces as they pushed him away and told him to leave them alone.

I couldn’t help myself. Something primal kicked in. I pounced.

I scooped my son up and childishly said in a loud voice so that the other children and their mother could hear, “Come on, honey, these girls are nasty and not worth playing with anyway.” Not my finest parenting moment, I’ll admit.

When my son was six, we moved from Melbourne to country Victoria. It was a difficult transition, and there were days when the entire family was in tears – the kids, the husband, the whole shebang.


If your child has ever started at a new school, you may relate to this. Every day for those first few weeks I would drive past at lunchtime to see how my son was going.

Day after day, he would be eating his sandwiches alone in the schoolyard, kicking the dirt sadly. Occasionally I would break all the rules and appear next to him and ask if he would play with me. His little face would light up as he’d say, “Hi Mum!”

Image: Supplied.


After a few weeks, he made some buddies and I could stop my spying. But even now, if those friends leave him out or say hurtful things, Mummy is always nearby to offer to shoot some hoops or kick a soccer ball.

So, when will it end? Will I still be hiding in the bushes when my son proposes to his partner, ready to jump in with a hug if his heart gets broken? Quite possibly.

Will I still be proudly sharing photos of him when he’s a father of three with a potbelly and a balding head? You bet.

And I’ve accepted that that’s okay. Because that’s parental love.

It’s a love that’s fierce and unconditional. It’s often irrational and makes you do crazy things, to the point of embarrassing yourself – and quite likely, your child at some point too.

But I will always be my son’s greatest ally and supporter. His number one fan to the very end.

Melissa Noble is a journalist, content writer and communications professional with over 15 years’ experience writing for different publications and brands. She lives in Bright, Victoria, with her three children and husband.

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Featured Image: Supplied.