Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Me. A mum.

I'm a mum. I'm their mum. They depend on me. I'm a teacher, a guide, a mentor, a feeder, a protector, a keeper, a soul-carrier, a heart-wearer, a carer, a disciplinarian, a story-teller, a playmate, a book-reader, an example, a role-model, a citizen-grower, an influencer. They need me, and I need them.

Being a mum is the most brilliant thing in my life. It's also the hardest. Every.single.moment.and.decision. is laced with doubt, guilt, conscience, question, and of course love. There's always love. Big giant suffocating love that brings tears to my eyes just thinking of it.

But I want to be a better mum. A more patient one, and a less distracted one. Definitely a less shouty one. I wish for the time, the freedom and the... privilege?... to take it slowly, to move at their pace, take their lead, look at the world through their eyes, rather than constantly needing to hurry up, tidy up, shoosh for a minute, stop fighting, get-a-move-on, and whatever-else-on.

I feel like I'm torn between the real-life urgency to earn money, keep my foot on the career ladder, and contribute my share and the real-life yearning to just be their mum - now - while they're so little and they need me so much. They are utterly dependent. The physical dependency is tiring, but not as exhausting as the sheer emotional pressure of having someone's life in your hands. And I don't want to break it. It's so precious.

I know we have to work. We have to earn money. We have to pay for this house, this life, this stuff. I'm not ready yet to think about whether we need it all (I'm quite sure we don't), because that might mean something I have only ever romantically entertained on mini-break weekends in front of roaring fires, balloon of red wine in hand (pre-kids, of course, when living in the country sounded divine if you could pop up to the city whenever you needed to). But I also firmly believe that if one of us can be at home with our boys, then we should. We ought. It's our job. It is better for one parent to be here often, than neither. I'm constantly amazed at how we do things in our own home to ourselves and to our children (our children!), that we would never dare to do to our employers. Isn't that back-to-front?

I'm not one of those mums who knows I'm a better mum if I'm working. I'm not. I'm a better mum when I'm immersed with them. That's not to say I don't enjoy working, because I do - if the work is interesting and challenging. I like to be busy, and I like to achieve results. I like remembering that I can chat about things other than child development and eating habits. But I don't think I do both well enough when they're competing for my time. I don't think I'm a good mama when I'm trying to juggle work, which never falls on the days it's supposed to, meaning I'm constantly trying to distract them so I can work. I don't think do a good enough job for my clients because I'm only ever partly on the job.

I frequently feel annoyed about this. Angry that I can't do it all. Frustrated because I'm so tired of the juggling and I can't explain it properly to anyone else - it just sounds so trivial when I try. Annoyed because our weekends are exhausting and tag-teaming and T and I don't have much quality time together. Cross because the house is always chaotic and we're always running out of milk! Exhausted because I haven't had a decent night's sleep in three years and wondering if I ever will again. Peed off because I don't get out much, that I don't see my friends enough, that I've become dull and boring and WHAT ABOUT ME? WHERE DID I GO IN ALL THIS?

But when it comes down to it, right now, I am a mum. I am their mum. It's my job. It's my heart. And for now, that's what I need to be.

Universe, are you listening?

1 comment:

  1. Not sure if the universe is listening, but I am and I can relate to lots of what you've written, especially in the paragraph above where you've described your frustration at trying to juggle everything feeling disorganised etc. That is so me at the moment, mainly because I'm so lacking in a decent night's sleep lately. But as you say, it's all part and parcel of our job as Mum's, it won't always be like this, nor will our bubs always need us as much as this. And for that reason, I'm okay with the dishes in my sink, the unswept floors etc.

    I went to have a little catch up on your blog the other night as I'm a bit behind in your posts, only to feel so exhausted I instead turned off the laptop and headed to be at 8pm :) Am trying to catch up now but the girls have just woken from naps so we'll see how far I get...

    Thanks for always commenting on my blog - I really appreciate the comments you leave me and that you take the time to read what I've written xx


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