Anyone who has read The Little Mumma before will know that I am all about shining a light on motherhood. A glaringly bright, often unflattering light. Because I can't pretend that this gig isn't ugly at times. Or unrewarding. Or boring. Or real. Motherhood is a hard slap of reality right in the kisser.
We all know it's not a baby powder commercial.
In saying that, there are plenty of beautiful moments to rival the most saccharine sweet tv ads. Having a child sets a fire in your heart that never goes out but geez, screaming babies, whingeing toddlers and extreme sleep-deprivation will give snuffing out that flame a red hot go.
I sometimes tell you that my kids are awesome. Because they are.
But I also need to tell you that sometimes I want to shut the front door on them and never come back.
And in between the highest highs and lowest lows are a zillion other emotions and I know that every mother finds themselves on the lower end of the spectrum at least sometimes.
If I tell you things are shitful, I'm not going to wrap the message up with the pretty bow of "Just gee gosh, isn't it all worth it in the end?" You're not an idiot. You know I think it's worth it (I have more than one child after all) but I believe we can just let shit days be shit. We'll come out of them eventually (unless we don't) and the cycle will continue.
I think it's freeing to say point blank, "Today my kids were arseholes and I was an arsehole back and this day sucked. Today that is my truth." In general, I am a sunshine and optimism kind of girl because I do believe in the power of attracting things to your life based on the attitude you choose to operate with. BUT as a fellow mother, I think the greater good is served by my honesty about bad days. When I tell you that my kids ain't perfect and my parenting ain't stellar, the simple act of admitting that frees not only me but maybe other mums, too.
So. I am NOT an advocate for veneer parenting.
But I had a thought recently.
We were at a play centre yesterday and LD pushed another little boy twice before hitting him in the face.
Ummmm, that's my boy?
We took him aside and explained that if that behaviour continued, we would be going home. The message was calm and controlled. It worked.
It hit me then. Parenting is the reverse of dancing. As in, while one should dance like no-one is watching, I propose we parent like EVERYONE is watching. Because I parent better with an audience. I take a deep breath and I act rather than react. My parenting is thoughtful rather than emotional.
When no-one is watching? I am capable of lazy, anger/exhaustion/apathy -driven parenting. Which is not only upsetting for everyone but unlikey to illicit the desired result of better behaviour.
I am still all about total transparency in parenting. Revealing my vulnerability as a mum is important. And I expect I will continue to drop the ball. But a more mindful approach to the way I interact with my kids is as good a place as any to start making a change for the better.
Is anyone else feeling like they need to curl in a ball and sleep for a year?
I am about done with winter and ready for a spring breeze to blow through my little world.
I am looking forward to wearing thongs again (that's flip flops, people, NOT underwear made of string).
Of course, I will need to cut my toenails...which are currently 27cms long. Seriously.
And shave my....well, body. All of it. It's hairy up in here.
Every second Friday is my half day. That's when B finishes work early and I get half the day to write/shop/shop. When he walks in the door he is greeted by the whirling dervish that is me getting the fuck out.
Tomorrow, I think he will be greeted by me whirling my dervish to the nearest bed.
I am so frickin' tired.
Anyhoo, that's the whole boring story right now.
A dear friend sent me the below in an email and it did give me a little laugh. And then I passed out face first into the keyboard....
Night night, peeps.
There was the time LD hopped into the bath (filled with water) on his own, fully clothed. Yeah, he was like 18 months old and we were NOT in the bathroom at the time. Nor did we hear him get in.
There was the time B yelled, "Oh my god, Zee!" and when I ran out to see what the commotion was about, there was Zee, sitting in his highchair - having CLIMBED IN ON HIS OWN. It's an Ikea highchair, white plastic with a plastic tray that slots in and would surely snap off if someone applied enough weight to it - say like, A BABY CLIMBING IN ON HIS OWN. Once again, we failed to notice our child performing this dangerous feat.
Bullet? Dodged. Again.
And then there's this;
Those used to be foam blocks. Now they're melted pieces of DODGED BULLET.
LD decided it would be a great idea to drop them inside his lamp. Which was on at the time.
Hot light-bulb + foam = fire hazard of awesome proportions.
Once again, we were only alerted to the fact of this when LD came out of his bedroom complaining of a sore (burnt) finger. The smell of burning foam? Yeah, totally missed that, too.
All I'm saying is, what the hell would happen if we were stoners?
In Blogland, people celebrate the anniversary of their first blog entry. A year is a long time to be writing something with any kind of regularity. It got me thinking about my blogoversary. I had no idea when it was.
Technically, I started The Little Mumma on January 22nd, 2009. But there were six entries for the entire year. Hey, I got knocked up and then had a baby somewhere in that timeframe.
Anyway, that first year doesn't count. So yesterday, I went looking and discovered I relaunched The Little Mumma and started blogging with dedication on August 20, 2010. I went searching for the date of my blogoversary only to discover it was exactly a year to the day. Freaky, huh?
But it was Saturday night and I couldn't be effed blogging about it.
Tonight, I thought I'd reflect just briefly on the year that's been.
Okay, I'm done.
But seriously, there has been MUCH to learn. I started blogging in the same way bands put their music on Myspace - in the notoriously difficult to break into world of professional writers, it seemed the obvious way to get my writing out there (yoohooo! are you out there?). I came into the world of blogging knowing sweet eff about blogging. I didn't even read other people's blogs. But I wasn't really a blogger, I was writer, so what did I care?
Like I said, so much to learn.
Long story short, apart from flexing my writing muscle week in and week out, becoming a blogger has been the most rewarding experience. I have 'met' so many other bloggers, connected with readers of The Little Mumma and discovered that I am a part of a very real and very important community.
Bloggers are very good at looking out for other bloggers. They support and spruik one another. They give great comment.
And they give awards.
I was going to tell you about an award I received that I was then meant to 'pay forward' to six other bloggers and at the same time, highlight the blogger who awarded me in the first place. But I tells ya, for the life of me, I can't find the award! Was I emailed about it? Or someone left a comment? I don't know! I can't remember who awarded it to me or what it was for but I assume it was probably "Most Awesome Blogger Who Is Also Crazy Good-Looking"....or something.
Anyway, if that person still reads my blog (they probably don't since I totally flaked on paying it forward and am still flaking now), can you remind me. And I promise I'll sing your praises from the rooftops. Pinky swear.
One honour I remember and will never, ever forget is being one of Kris' Featured Bloggers at Pretty All True. Kris is sort of AMAZING and being featured was sort of THRILLING and given the fact she doesn't do Featured Bloggers anymore, I feel so grateful to have been included. She is a blogging hero of mine but moreso, she just writes the pants off of everything. Go and read - choose any entry, they are all amazing. But here's the one where she mentions me. Swoon!
I also got listed in a Top 50 Mom Blogs thingy on some education website but I see that list no longer exists. Sad face.
And then there are the lovely people who have championed my posts on Twitter and Facebook. Friends I know and friends I have never met. Each and every one has made my heart soar. People are kind. That's what I am learning.
So, it's been a whole year of saying way more than I probably should. And I haven't even posted about my colonic irrigation episode yet.
I am the queen of the overshare. Which probably deserves an award....
My amazing sponsors, those businesses who generously donated stuff for my giveaways, and you, the readers. I squeeze you all to my breastfeeding-savaged, lopsided bosom.