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Witch’s Brew

Once upon a time, on a Halloween not so long ago…

“So,” Julian’s teacher looked up at me with a soft smile in her eyes, “in preparation for Halloween this year, Julian did an activity this morning called ‘The Witch’s Brew.’ He stuck with it all morning long until he finally completed it–very determined boy, your Julian. I kept telling him that he didn’t have to write the whole thing out, but he insisted.”

It was that time of the year: parent–teacher conferences at my son’s preschool.

“What each child was supposed to do,” she explained as she led me to an area in the room where a witch’s hat, a small black pot for making “stew,” and the pretend ingredients for that stew, were neatly arranged on a table, “was to add the ingredients of the stew into the pot, to write down what they’ve added, and to then move on to the next ingredient until all ten ingredients have been added and written down.”

She handed me the piece of paper where Julian, in his four-year-old scrawl, had meticulously written down each ingredient that he’d added to the stew: 1 snall (or, snail), 2 rats, 3 pumpkins, 4 snaks (snakes), 5 wigile bugs (wiggly bugs), 6 bats, 7 skeltons (skeletons), 8 black spidrs (black spiders), 9 frogs and 10 orang spidrs (orange spiders).

“Wow,” I commented proudly, smiling down at the misspelled words. “What a great job for a four-year-old.”

“Well,” his teacher continued, taking the paper back out of my hands. “Like I said, Julian worked on this project almost all morning long. He just wouldn’t give up. Because once a child completes the list of ingredients on this side of the paper, then they are allowed to turn the paper over and write out their ‘ultimate wish,’ something that they’re really yearning for.”

The look on her face gave her away as she turned the paper over.

“You’re about to make me cry, aren’t you?” I asked, knowing the answer.

“You bet I am,” she smiled, handing the paper back to me.

My eyes dropped down to the paper in my hands that held Julian’s wish: “I wish momme has a hart in hr tume.” Which, if written correctly, would read like this: “I wish mommy has a heart in her tummy.”

I reached a hand into my right coat pocket, removing the tissue that is always there since Julian’s siblings started dying.

“Your son just has one of the biggest hearts I’ve ever seen in a child,” she said, shaking her head. “He’s a very special young man. And he definitely loves his Mommy and Daddy.”

Photo credit: <a href=”″>Vec’s world</a> on <a href=””></a&gt; / <a href=””&gt; CC BY-NC</a>

Just living is not must have sunshine, freedom, and a little flower. ~Hans Christian Andersen

I am a mother, a blogger and the author of the memoir Pitter-Pat: A Mother's Journey from Loss to New Life. I am currently in training to be a life coach through Martha Beck's Wayfinder Life Coach Training Program. I write about grief, love, and the beauty of new beginnings. My other interests are meditating, walking outside and doing pretty much anything that brings me closer to nature.


  1. October 31, 2018

    So loving and sad, such a precious little boy you have

    • awakeningwildflower
      October 31, 2018

      Yes, I do. Thank you for noticing ❤️ 💜 ♥️

    • awakeningwildflower
      October 31, 2018

      Love back to you…💜

  2. December 4, 2018

    I like this very much Awakening. I haven’t seen much of you in awhile. I hope everything is going as well as it can for you. Take care.

    • awakeningwildflower
      December 9, 2018

      Thanks, Jared. I’m doing okay…attempting to self-publish my first book, which has taken a lot of my attention and energy. I’ll be back…just taking a necessary “break.” Thanks for caring…best to you, as well.

  3. March 27, 2019

    Such a special son you have and so smart for his age then. Love you both

    • awakeningwildflower
      March 29, 2019

      Love you too, Mom…

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