Motherhood comes naturally to some…
I’ve known people who gave their future kids names and tell about motherhood as their dream career when they grow up.
I’ve seen how some mamas go out alone with 3 kids and look like they have gotten it all sorted out. And their hair is neat and kids are clean.
For me, from day zero, we both knew this wasn’t going to be a walk in the park for me. Obviously! Someone who can’t cook or keep her desk clean, and falls sick so regularly I need someone to look after me most of the time. That’s me. How to be a mother?
So nearly 27 months on, I am still learning.
There are days I feel exasperated – like “What do you want? Quit making sputtering noises like a car engine failing and tell me!!”
There are days when I’m sick and wanna crawl under the bed and hide, but Little Foot finds me and wants me to sing and play “three little monkeys jumping on the bed”.
There are days when I make loud angry remarks at the whole family… because “Aaaahhhh!!!! I just wanna eat my meal in one sitting!!”
There are days when I lie in bed and sob. Because “I. Am. Just. So. Tired… it might be easier if I was dead”.
And then there are days when all the grudges and unfairness gets erased, or at least momentarily forgotten.
Because Little Foot gave me a kiss on my lips. Then again. And again. And again!
Because Little Foot does a “Baby-5!” With me…when we make some little achievement together.
Because Little Foot held my hand and ran with me together after Papa Long shouting “wait for me!!!”
Because Little Foot would have those rare caring moments … like how she suddenly remembered her Papa’s foot was injured, looked over the edge of the bed and asked Papa Long “Are you ok already? Not pain already?”
Because she gives the most brillant grin that is brighter than the sun.
And because I would lay in the dark these days, with my fatigue and constant pain… angry at God for being given thid body that never stopped being in pain, and yet never could hate Little Foot for it, as I would recall how scary the moments after delivering her was…because we were separated and I was left lying in the dark occasionally asking God if my baby is alright.
I still can’t quite cook a decent meal, nor clean up after the Little Hurricane…
But she enjoys bathtimes with me, and being carried like a koala by me, she enjoys singing and running, play pretending and simply just being around me.
And I know these days are getting far and fewer, because of work and because she’s getting more independent.
One day, she will be no longer a baby, no longer a toddler, and perhaps I would still be learning how to be the best a mother can be.
So, if anyone is feeling inadequate, remember you aren’t alone. It is a lifelong class we are taking. Let them teach us to be the best that we can be. Sometimes we fail, but we won’t always be failures unless we stop learning and trying.
And yes, we will get frustrated and pull our hairs or scream our heads off (into pillows I hope). And sometimes we will hide in the cafe opposite our houses, just to get a quiet moment.
It is ok. Because after that is all done. Take a deep breath and go home. I look into her eyes, smell her hair and I tell myself “Anything is possible, because I have you”. Some days are harder than others, but we get through. Somehow.
And yes, because my dearest husband is always there to fill in when I am wanting..and to pick me up when I fall. And remind me through his actions that all can be done…just keep going.
That’s really how I get each day. Tired, in pain, some days dejected, some days delighted. That’s motherhood as it is. Really. Nothing glamorous at all.
With only 1 child and working full time, some days I find it hard to remember to make sure her teeth are brushed and her probiotics are taken. Sometimes I forget that I haven’t cut my hair for months or stocked up on diapers. Recently I turned up for work without drawing my eyebrows. And today tried to leave my mum’s place without my sling bag containing all my keys and cards and money.
How those with 3 or 4 kids do it and still look like life is good continues to baffle me…but you have my respect for sure.
Thanks Little Foot, for being a tough teacher. It’s really quite a wild ride!
And you know, I always muster my last ounce of strength and go with you when you say “Come, Mummy! Come with me! Runaway!”