Sunday, 16 August 2009
Posted by Sarah Pellew
I was reading an article today about Thandie Newton. She was warbling on, at one point, about her child/children and how they made her life complete and how they were her life.... blah, blah, blah... Oh God, I thought... am I weird? Am I the only parent out there who finds children exhausting?
We wandered around a lovely garden today( I shall post about it another time ) and my boys ( 9 & 11 ) were with us. Obviously. We don't get to have quiet romantic outings by ourselves any more... I suppose I should be glad that our parenting has produced confident, happy boys who fly around like demented bloody squirrels, but..... uh.... sometimes... enough is enough.
There are times when I long for the quiet, civilised life before the boys came along. The times when I could enjoy a long bath without having one or both of them come bursting in to use the toilet. The times when I didn't have to make anything for dinner if I didn't feel like it. The times when my lounge was not littered with DS games, Match magazine and the faint smell of pre teenage boy.
I read other blogs of people whose lives with children sound perfect. Their children are perfect, their lives are complete and they ask no more of life than to spend the day playing board games or watching a kids film with their offspring. Well, that is just not me... A lot of the time I can't stand being a mum. Yes, you heard me right. I want to do my kind of stuff... watch my kind of films, my kind of tv and spend days wandering around galleries... not washing muddy football kit whilst cooking industrial quantities of spag bol for the screaming hoards.
Sometimes I look at myself before kids and compare myself then to myself now... Now I am an exhausted, plump, sucked dry version of my old self. They are slowly draining my lifeblood as they blossom into young men. Like butterflies changing from caterpillars they are plumping up and as they grow more beautiful and more vibrant, I diminish and fade.
Is that what motherhood is? Do I have to sacrifice myself for them? I pretend to the world that I am Mrs Perfect Mum, but inside I mourn, selfishly you may well say, for the old me. I fully acknowledge that I am selfish in feeling this way. Perhaps this is the child left in me? My final gasp of self obsession.
Whatever the truth may be, I will never let them know how I feel about this. Perhaps my one good feature is that I keep up the pretence to the outside world that motherhood is a state of wonderful happiness, that this is what I love to be. For, no matter how exhausting I find them, no matter how irritating, one of the things about being a parent is that you have an overwhelming urge to protect the little blighters.... I think I may need a glass of wine...