Some days, being a mother feels like playing dress-ups.
I am clunking around in a pair of stilettos ten times the size of my little girl feet with bright red lipstick applied clown-like to my little girl mouth.
Some days, I am masquerading as a grown up.
Becoming a mother empowered me in ways I can't adequately express. I felt the enormity of what my body could do; the weight of responsibility as I held aloft the tiny creature that was somehow 'mine'; the fierce determination to protect this child in whatever way I must.
Becoming a mother turned me into a woman.
But still, I am a fraud.
Because if I am heartbroken or frightened, confused or anxious and always and especially if I'm throwing up, I want my mum.
I can't imagine a time when that won't be true.
Today and for the last few weeks, I have been clunking. I find the clunking becomes more pronounced as my children get older.
Newborns? Specifically my newborns? Piece of cake. Loved every second of it. Found it very easy to make decisions on their behalf. Decisions for babies are relatively straightforward. The variables are minimal.
But as my sons get older, I am finding the decision-making process to be an emotional minefield and like taking the wrong path in a video game, I'm just waiting for one of my kids to explode.
Right now, it's about LD. What he wants, what he needs. Being that LD is just days away from being four years old, I have been consulting him in the decision-making process.
Wow. There's a mindfuck for you.
For a few weeks now, I have been driven slowly insane trying to decipher exactly what he wants based on exactly what he says. And then trying to read between the lines – but then, do four-year-olds have lines in which to read between?
LD is the classic stereotype of the flip-flopping politician. It's yes and it's no. Sometimes in the same conversation.
So I talked to my mum. Because, remember, I need her.
She told me to stop asking the four-year-old and just make a decision on his behalf.
She was, of course, a bazillion percent correct. But bottom line?
I DON'T WANT TO.
How the fuck did I get this job?? I feel woefully under-qualified.
I make hundreds of decisions on behalf of my children every single day. But when the decision could impact on their immediate happiness and then reach further into the future, I admit, my confidence gets shaky.
Today, I clunked for a bit and then I traded those stilettos in for a pair of combat boots and I took some action. I know the decision I have made will cause some upheaval to my child. I know I am moving him outside of his comfort zone. But I also know that this temporary change can lead to an overall happier experience for him.
I am proud of the big girl steps I took today. But inside, I am still teetering on those heels and hoping like hell that I've done the right thing for my beautiful kid.
*hugs* Angie, proud of you too xx
I have clunking days too, masquerading as a mother, and wondering why nobody has noticed its all pretend. Good luck with your decision. I am sure you will have made the right one. Zannix
Thanks, Fran. You’re a love. xxx
I know, Zanni, isn’t it crazy how we can fool people into thinking we have it together?!?
I am sure you have made the right decision…whatever that may be. And never forget that kids are resiliant creatures. They just role with it safe in the knowledge that mum and dad and siblings are there waiting with cuddles, love and fun. Don’t doubt your choice cause I am sure he won’t 🙂
99% of the time we (as mothers who know our kids better than they know themselves) we make the right decision. 1% of the time we make the wrong one, but rest in the knowledge that we can always change or make better those wrong decisions.
I’m sure you’ve made the right one. Trust your instincs.
I’m forever clunking. No longer in swimming in too-big shoes but my generously sized feet and lack of grace ensure that I keep clunking nonetheless.
I often wonder when I’ll feel like a bonafide grown-up for more than a few moments here and there…
I’m confident that you’ve made the right decision for your beautiful kid – he’ll be oblivious to the wringer you’ve put your heart through. x
Yep, gotta trust myself. If it all goes to shit, we can blame Betty.
Thank you, Rachel. I appreciate your words so much.
And yeah, I’ve sticky-taped over a few fuck-ups in my time as “Mumma”….no harm done. 🙂
Thanks, MJ. In my mind, you are nothing but graceful. 🙂
He has NO clue of the way this knots my tummy. But I know that he has been feeling similarly unsettled and whatever I can do to ease that, I will do it.