Monday, 6 January 2014
Being a Mum - the truth of the matter.
Sometimes there are no other words for it. Being a mum is a thankless task. Oh yes, we can wax lyrical (what a very strange phrase, I wonder where it originates...) about how rewarding it is and how much we love those moments with a snuggly child on a rainy day or a little hand clinging to ours. We can enjoy those glimpses of why we became mums in the first place. But sometimes that's all they are. Glimpses. Snatched moments of joy in a long day of exhausted and sacrificial giving.
Take today, for example.
I cuddled, baked, encouraged, played wii games, tried to be artistic (not my best skill) and played with my bored, lonely little boy on a TED day who was missing his big brothers. All day he asked me when they were coming home. I knew I wasn't an exciting enough playmate, but I tried my best. I was most definitely his second, or even third, choice in the rankings but as I was the only one there, I'd have to do. And there were moments of sweetness like when he asked me to snuggle with him under a blanket (even if he did temporarily break the remote control in the process of wanting to do everything himself). But still, I knew I wasn't quite hitting the mark.
So I clock-watched, waiting desperately for the big brothers to return and hoping that they would be the answer to the issues of boredom.
When they eventually blasted through the door, dropping coats (unworn, despite the rain and wind), shoes and bags right in the doorway, I felt a wave of relief flood through me. The entertaining baton could be passed to someone else!
Except they didn't see it quite that way. Ignoring his cheerful and excited shouts, they trawled through the cupboards like locusts, looking for a 'snack', plonked themselves down in front of Mario kart and shouted at him to be quiet.
"Mum! Tell him to shut up (we're not really allowed to say this in our house, but I'm giving you the honest truth here - as much as I wish it, they did not say 'be quiet')! I can't concentrate on this race!"
From that moment on, I knew I'd made a mistake. My hope faded rapidly as the afternoon lurched from one argument to another, dropping to an all time low when they argued over whether 'yo' sounds like 'no'. I am not even joking. This was a serious matter.
And so, I wearily put back on my referees uniform and spent the last few hours of the day negotiating, peace-making (or even just war-avoiding) and separating agitators until finally bedtime called.