I didn't really get time to sit and blog yesterday so I thought I'd post today about Mothers and Mother's Day.
Being a mother is the hardest job ever that a woman will have to face. You are responsible for another person's life. Before I get shouted at, I know that it's very similar for Dad's but as it's been Mother's Day and I am a Mother, I'm basing this post on what I know and have experienced.
I have been a Mum for almost 25 years, yet I'm still only 41. Shocking!
My first taste of being a Mum was a bit of a shock to say the least. I got pregnant whilst on the pill at only 16 years of age! I was given all the options by my parents, but I opted to keep the baby. I had a beautiful baby girl 6 weeks before I was 17 years old. Now that is a shock to the system, but I coped, quite well if I say so myself, and brought my baby up living on my own in a tiny 2 bedroom council house, but I did ok. My son was born almost 5 years later and he was such a demanding baby from the minute he was born. It took a while to find out that he had a dairy allergy. He was also classed as a 'naughty' child. and had the most humungous temper tantrums. You know that kid you hear screaming all over the supermarket? That was him. Looking back, had I had him checked out I'm sure he'd have been labled ADHD, but I didn't want a lable, it wasn't going to change him. How I didn't murder this child, I have no idea. My mum said she would have done LOL, and that I have the patience of a saint. He's now 19, almost 20 and is the nicest lad you could wish to meet. He's calm and quiet but confident in himself. He's given me no trouble at all through his teenage years, unlike his older sister, but the less said about her teenage tantrums the better. Both he and his almost 25 year old sister have never been in trouble with the police, have had no drink or drug problems, are both working and are both lovely young adults that know the rights from wrongs.
And then there's my late addition to the family, my 4 year old little ray of sunshine. Yet another shock conisdering my son was 15 when Isabelle was born. That was quite a difficult thing to handle to be honest. I'd got my life back, my two older kids were more or less independent, I was working full time in a good job and boom, I'm pregnant at 36 years old. But her sunny nature, her brightness and her zest for life makes me smile every day and I don't regret having her for a minute, despite feeling tired most of the time, and the sleepless nights when she was a tiny baby.. oh my.. I won't even go there.
Nothing prepares you for the responsibility of raising these little people who are born knowing nothing. You have to teach them everything. You have to teach them the rights and wrongs, only you're not sure if you are teaching them right, you only have your morals to base your guidance on. The panic that is 'have I done the right thing' when you're trying to guide them never goes away, although I must admit, having a third child later on in life seems to make the job so much easier. I am so much more relaxed with Isabelle than I was with the other two. other people's opinions don't matter so much whether I'm doing the right thing or not, I will do what I personally think is right for my child. You don't have to stick to the supposed rules, you do what you think is best. You no longer follow the guidelines in the books that you get so hung up on when you're young and have no clue what you're doing. It's just so much easier.
So it was Mother's Day yesterday. My 24 year old daughter who lives miles away actually managed to get a card to me on time. This has never happened before LOL. She also phoned and said she even shocked herself that she got the card posted in time for it to be here on the day. My son wandered downstairs at about mid-day (lazy bugger) and handed me a card and a toblerone (yay! mmmm) but my little ray of sunshine kissed me awake at 7.30am (bless her!!!) and said I love you mummy, you are the best mummy in the world. How can you roll over and go back to sleep when you've got that in your ear? So I got up and opened my card from her.. the biggest card she could possibly find obviously. She'd written it herself and put billions of kisses in it. Mark said, she chose the presents herself. Yikes! She'd chosen 2 little white teddies and a little blue chick that cheeped (who she named cheeky cheepy and has since adopted and has carried it around since I unwrapped it) A lovely flowery houseplant and a paint it yourself mug, which she declared "I will paint your mug for you" .. oh dear ... LOL. But paint it she did, and it's made it all the more special because she did it and was so proud of the result. As you can see, it has a sunshine and a butterfly (the green and pink thing is the butterfly and the red bit at the front is it's 'tongue' LOL) on one side and a pretty flower on the other side. And if this mug gets broken, I will be mortified! because it was painted with so much love, and she was bursting with pride when she'd finished. No one else is allowed to use this mug under strict orders from Isabelle, and woe betide anyone who dares to 'borrow' it.
I like to think of myself as a bit of a cool mum and my kids have told me so in the past. There aren't many mums who will phone their kids and say "I've just bought tickets to go to the Metallica gig, are you going to get tickets and come too?" hehe. .. and they did come and we had a fantastic time!
My relationship with my own mum is somewhat different. I have a difficult relationship with her. I wish it were different, but in 41 years, it's never changed. Without trying to sound mean, she is a very controlling person. This is in life, not just with me. That is the type of person she is, and I accept that. She likes to have things her own way and likes people to do things her way too. She doesn't seem to understand or accept that other people do things in a different way to her, and she will try to convince you that her way is the right way, full stop! She finds it hard to understand me I think. I am generally a relaxed person who will get things done in my own time, but always in time if you get what I mean. For instance, a conversation with my mum on the phone last week went along the lines of:
Mum: what are you doing on the 27th of March?
Me: (as ever, cautious to committing myself from the off) Um, I don't know, why?
Mum: I'm organising a 40th birthday party for your brother.
Me: (heckles up because despite me arranging a get together for my 40th a couple of years ago, it was ignored due to mum changing plans and organising a surprise 60th for my Aunt)
Me:I'll just check my calendar to see if we've got anything on.
Mum: (slightly agressive tone) Never mind what's on the calendar, you'll have to cancel it, I'm organising this party and you have to come.
(Now this involves a 4 hour drive each way to get to my mum's)
Me: (checking the calendar), no we don't have anything on that weekend anyway. OK, we'll be there.
Mum: Oh, and I want you to make the birthday cake.
Me: oh..... ok.
Mum: I want a Formula 1 racing car cake and want it in the old John Player Special colours.
(no please or thank you or could you.. this is an order)
Me: But the JPS colours are black. Will anyone really want to eat a cake with black icing?
Mum: oh, well choose your own colour then but it has to look like a Formula 1 racing car.
Me: OK, I'll think of something.
Mum: Oh, and don't leave it too late to make it.
Me: I won't.
Mum: In fact, you could make it tomorrow and get it in the freezer.
Me: Mum there's three weeks yet
Mum: It doesn't matter, at least it will be done.
Me: It will be done in time, don't worry.
And that's basically how any conversation goes with my mum. I've tried to talk to her about it in the past and explain that I am actually a grown up now and can make my own decisions, but she still tells me how to live my life, what to buy the kids for christmas and birthdays etc etc. I told her the other day that I'm trying to work myself up to take my 19 year old cat to the vets.. she's old and tired and keeps falling over. I know it's time to have her put to sleep, but I'm having trouble making 'the decision'. I said this to mum and all she said was, well go and get it done, and just don't get anymore pets. (what? and why not?) she gave no reason.
Hmmm, well this ended up in a bit of a moan-fest LOL. I did have a lovely mother's day and was told every 5 minutes that I was 'the best' by my 4 year old.
And now it's time to go and re-fill my newly painted coffee mug.
I hope all you mum's had a lovely mother's day too