Being a mother and what it really means

It’s Mother’s day today. A chance to celebrate the fact that we, as mums, are bloody awesome human beings. Don’t get me wrong, none of us are perfect. I know I’m certainly not. When I first found out I was pregnant with my 1st baby, I had all these (unrealistic) ideas of how I was going to be and act as a mum and how I was going to raise my children. I certainly wasn’t going to be a shouty mum. I absolutely wasn’t going to be one of those mums who let their child play on some sort of electronic device and beige food was strictly band from the table. Only wholesome home cooked food in my kitchen thank you very much! Did that happen? Did it hell.

Don’t get me wrong, I don’t scream at my children from morning till night as they sit googled eyed at the Ipad whilst shoving fish fingers and potato waffles down their necks. But I do have the odd day where I’m a little bit more shouty than I’d like (because if I have to ask Katie to put her shoes on one more time so help me god…) and the Ipad is out whilst Dylan is napping so I can quickly get the hoovering done. I’ve also had days where I’m absolutely knackered and I forgot to take the meat out of the freezer so only chicken nuggets will do. And do you know what?

It’s all good.

We are all doing our best aren’t we!? I know I certainly am. Sure, every day isn’t perfect. Sure, I have days where if I have to listen to one of the children whinge one more time I might stab myself in the eye.

I have days where I go to bed and I could burst in to tears because I’ve felt guilty over counting the minutes down until their bedtime. But all in all, I’m an awesome mum. I love my kids with everything that I am.

I tell them I love them everyday, several times a day. I keep them safe. I smother them in kisses and make them feel important – because they are. I feed them, dress them, play with them. I interact with them and I challenge them. I try to get them to see the world for what it is. I encourage them to ask questions. I embrace the fact that sometimes they want to be different. I nurse them back to health when they are unwell. I wipe their tears when they are upset and I kiss their “ouchies”.

I read to them. I comfort them. I reassure them when they are scared. I teach them right from wrong. I play that game “just one more time” even though we’ve played it a 100 times already. This to me, is what being a mother is. Taking the good with the bad, the giggles and the tears. The endless sleepless nights. The nights where I’ve stood for hours on end rocking them back and forth until they go back to sleep.

It’s not just about giving birth to a child, it’s about the aftermath. The years ahead where your not always perfect but you’ll do. Having days where you beat yourself up and tell yourself you could have tried harder or been more patient. The days where you should have listened a bit more instead of shrugging them off or telling them to be quiet.

We are all in the same boat. I know every single one of you reading this will relate to it somewhere because we are all awesome. We are rocking motherhood and our children love us for it. We aren’t perfect – we’re just mums.

Happy Mother’s day!

 

Motherhood. The good, the bad and the eye bags

It’s 3am and the house is quiet. Everyone’s asleep (or trying to sleep) all except for me and Dylan. It’s the 5th time I’ve had to get up with him since I went to bed at 10pm. I’m not sure what’s unsettling him. I don’t know whether he’s teething, he’s feeling unwell or whether he just wants some company.

What I do know is that I’m the only one at this hour that can comfort him.

As he lays there on my chest, his head rested on my shoulder he instantly relaxes. Whatever was bothering him seems to bother him no longer so long as he’s in my arms. When I think he’s drifted off to sleep I try to gently lay him back in his cot only for him to cry again. It really is exhausting. I never had sleeping issues with my daughter. She was always such a good little sleeper and even now she sleeps 7:30pm-7:30am. I wrote in a post a couple of weeks ago (Dylan – You are 17 months old) that, after 17 long months of wakeful nights, you had finally cracked the sleeping through bit. Well that post came back to bite me on the arse because he’s not slept through since!

What is it about little ones needing you? It’s a mothering battle that I will never win. On one hand I’m at the end of my tether, praying that tonight will be the night he sleeps through and on the other hand I feel an overwhelming sense of love and softness when it’s the still of the night and it’s only us two. Nestled in each other, not making a sound and just enjoying the quiet cuddles. It’s like our own special club. I feel like I’m needed and that I serve a purpose. I remind myself that these moments, however exhausting they are, won’t last forever.

The days without sleep are hard. My patience is short, my energy levels are zapped and I have bags under my eyes big enough to carry the weekly shop in.

But you just cope don’t you?

You do whatever you can to survive and get through the day and do it all again the next night. Because that’s what motherhood, or parenthood, is. It’s surviving. It’s about winging it at every opportunity. You pray to the big man upstairs that tonight will be the night that you get more than a 2 hour stretch of sleep before you have to get up again and when you hear those faint little cry’s (that soon turn it to extra loud wails if your not quick enough!) your heart sinks a little bit. But as soon as you realise that those cry’s were for you and your touch, every little irritated and exhausted feeling goes straight out of the window. That’s motherhood. It’s the good, the bad and the eye bags all rolled in to one and do you know what? I wouldn’t have it any other way!