I have been nominated by the lovely Sarah at Run, Jump, Scrap! to share ten ways in which I am rocking motherhood. And whilst it may sound easy to some, for someone like me, it’s always going to be a struggle. If you asked me for ten ways in which my friends rock at motherhood, I’d reel them off without a problem. If you asked me for ten ways that I am failing at motherhood, I’d be filling a book and then some, but I have always found it difficult to find something positive to say about myself…..so this was a real challenge!!
I have sat here for the last hour worrying about my answers, something which those who suffer with anxiety will relate to I’m sure. I panicked that my answers were too smug, too boastful, too contrived, that others would be reading and thinking, Hang on a minute, she’s not Mary bloody Poppins!! And so I scrapped my answers, ate a Galaxy Caramel, followed by a packet of crisps, and decided to simply write the first ten things that came into my head.
And so here they are, ten reasons why I’m a good Mummy.
1. I sit through endless hours of Mr Tumble, despite the fact that I seriously loathe that man. And more than that, I hide my hatred of him, and the fact that the mere sight of his goony face makes me want to gouge my own eyes out, and I laugh along with the children as though he is the funniest man on the planet. “Do you really love Mr Tumble?” they always ask me, narrowing their eyes suspiciously, “Absolutely!” I tell them, “He’s my favourite!”.
2. I always try to do the right thing by my children, even if it isn’t always what is right for me. I’ll be honest with you, it can be tough, especially having to share Lewis with his Dad, even more so in the beginning when emotions were so raw and I was still dealing with so much hurt. But I think that part of being a parent is about putting your children first, encouraging their relationships with all sides of the family, being supportive of step parents, new siblings, extended family and a life that, let’s face it, I’m no longer a part of. Even when it’s hard, and even when it’s a bitter pill to swallow, if I truly believe that something is right for my children, I will support it whole heartedly.
3. I embrace the fact that my children are exactly who they are meant to be – the good, the bad and the out right impossible! I try my hardest not to compare them, to each other or to other children, and I encourage their little quirks and traits, the things that make them special. I have spoken a lot about accepting the child you have rather than the child you thought you would have, and reaching that acceptance has made a huge difference to me as a Mother.
4. I share my food. Trust me, this is a big one! That last slice of toast, the one that you’ve been saving right ’til the end because its extra buttery? That final mouthful of cake, the end piece so it’s super chocolatey, with the most amount of buttercream and chocolate sprinkles? Well just like Joey, Laura doesn’t share food!! And yet when they pop up beside me, their little mouths opening and closing like baby birds to their Mama, I just can’t resist! And that is true love!
5. Although I make mistakes, I always learn from them. Maybe not the first time, or even the tenth, but eventually, I do learn from them. Being a Mummy is such a learning curve, and there are times when I feel as though I’m just blindly groping my way through the dark, but we always get there in the end, albeit with a detour or two.
6. I make our lives as magical as possible. Whether that’s sharing stories of mermaids and unicorns, searching for fairies in the woods, enjoying twenty four lonnnnnng days of Elf on the shelf, trekking across to another county in the search for snow, or simply re-creating scenes with their favourite mythical dragon, I always try to fill our days with magic.
7. I drink pretend cups of tea and eat pretend pieces of cake, all day long! And I still make slurpy noises and say “Mmmmm yummy!” as though it’s the most delicious meal I’ve ever had. Even on the days when I really don’t feel like it.
8. We laugh together, a lot. Silly, playful moments, dancing around the kitchen, shaking our booty, pirouetting, breakdancing, singing at the top of our voices to Anna and Elsa. We read books and do silly voices, build dens and fight pirates, snowball fights in the winter, digging giant holes in the Summer, playing with the toys in those ordinary moments, acting out scenarios that have the children in hysterics. And I love those moments, the sound of their laughter and the sparkle in their eyes, and I hope that when they are grown and look back on their childhood they will remember that, for the most part, our home was filled with so much laughter.
9. I overcame my demons so that I could be as happy and healthy as possible for my children. And I can’t even begin to tell you how difficult that was, to go through the toughest times of my life, through my battles with mental health and through the pain of baby loss, and still have to find the strength to carry on for my children’s sake. On the days when I wanted to lie down, close my eyes, and simply be with Joseph, or the times when I wanted to lock the door, close the curtains and hide away from the rest of the world, I still got out of bed each morning, put a smile on my face and made sure that I sought the help that I needed to be the parent that they needed.
10. I am grateful, something which has undoubtedly shaped me as a Mother. Having my babies did not come easily to me, nor was it something that I ever took for granted, and for all of our sadness at losing so many babies, and our heartache at losing Joseph, I think it has made me truly appreciate how lucky we are to have four healthy children. I will never forget the struggles we went through, and nor would I want to, and in that way I try to enjoy every moment, even the ones that involve Mr Tumble…..!
And it turns out that finding ten reasons wasn’t quite so hard after all, that I could easily have shared ten more; the fact that I deserve a medal simply for getting four children up, dressed and out of the door each morning, how I have mastered the perfect poker face when the children have been naughty and yet equally hilarious. How I make sacrifices so that they don’t have to, or how I work on my blog, every spare minute I have, whilst they are in school, nursery, or asleep in bed, just so I can give them experiences and opportunities that I wouldn’t otherwise be able to.
And the truth is, I may not be the best Mummy out there, far from it I’m sure, but if you asked my children they will tell you, in no uncertain terms, that I am the best Mummy in the whole wide world. And that is all that matters.
I nominate these fantastic Mummies –
Alex at Better Together Home
Laura at Dear bear and beany
Yvonne at Double the monkey business
Su at Ethan & Evelyn
Michelle at Mummy Mimi
And to anyone else who wishes to join in, how do you rock at motherhood?