I know it’s Valentine’s Day but romantic love isn’t what I’m focusing on here (although I madly deeply love my husband *go check my Vestaire Collective wishlist Peter (inserts blowing kisses emojis).
Today, is all about the unconditional, heart-aching love I feel for my sons, Oliver and Alexander. Look away now if you’re not up for the ALL mushy feels because this one is testament to the unbreakable bond of a mother’s love. This mother.
Look, straight up, kids will completely break you and (thus) make you, in my opinion.
Babies and that first year as a first-time parent, in particular take you to all kinds of low depths. That burn of the baptism of fire that is becoming a parent is harsh. It is then and because of that pain and turbulence that you discover your strength. How tough you actually are. ‘I’ve survived on a year of 2 hours sleep a night so, I can do freaking anything’.
I’m obsessed with my kids, I am completely in love with them. I couldn’t have wished for sweeter, more beautiful (every mama thinks her kids are beautiful right?), loving kids.
They’ve challenged my perceptions of motherhood, too. I thought I’d lose who I was when I had babies and for a while I did, but as I rediscovered my confidence and my voice thanks to this blog and simply getting into the swing of parenthood, I realised I was exactly the same person as before, just with more fire in my belly with two children to provide for.
Importantly, I realised have freaking fun having kids is. Those boys are my best friends and I don’t care if admitting that breaks some weird parental code. Yes, raising humans is hard work and you need boundaries as parents, something we have, but we laugh a s*** load together be it my made up stories of Ninja Mama, the fearless caped crusading mama who always saves the day to blare out Ed Sheeran in the car and getting through my fave 90’s kids’ together. Matilda is their favourite and basically reminds me of pre-school. I thought it was a documentary of my time there when I first watched it!
My youngest is 4 and cracks me up daily, just last night he told me that his favourite restaurant is ‘Mark Donald’s ‘(McDonald’s) and he’ll still eat there when he’s a big man ‘but just the meal, no toy’. My eldest is 7 and is more mature than I am to be fair, he’s the most caring child I’ve ever met, let alone created.
Maternal love is mental really, looking into your babies’ eyes, you’re so blissfully happy and in love yet simultaneously freaked out and scared you’ll ever lose it/them.
Love of all kinds, is the meaning of life. When you’re loved and give love, you’re liberated, you discover the strength to be who you are, safe in the knowledge and bubble that you are understood and valued.
Love gives you superpowers (and not just maternal love of course).
I was reflecting on the some of the things I’ve done since my babies were born in the name of maternal love and wanted to share them.
1. Birth. OK I know you can’t get out of that one but whatever happens in that crazy birth journey of giving life, we mamas, face it head on. There always comes this distinctive, unforgettable moment where you find your fearlessness in the madness, that ‘Let’s be having this, then’ vibe where the need to meet your baby triumphs over fear. That is love.
2. Facing death. I actually once threw myself in front of a car when my eldest son, Oliver, ran in front of one years ago. I’ve never mentioned it before because my family said not to. I’m not sure why, but it was all a bit raw when it happened and then I just never bothered blogging about it. So the car wasn’t going fast, although I didn’t know that at the time, maybe 5/10 miles per hour as we were in a supermarket car park when my usually sensible 4 year old legged it to the other side to join Daddy, not seeing the car in front of him. I ran ahead of him in front of the car which did an emergency stop and we were all OK, thankfully. I then proceeded to buy ALL the wine in Sainsburys.
3. Share my food. Kids don’t give you any other option, right? Whilst I was always generous with food, pre-kids, I hated people putting ‘dirty’ forks into my dinner. You know that whole ‘don’t put the licked spoon back in’ biz. When the kids were toddlers they would stick their hands into pretty much everything I ever made, so I quickly got over my original neurosis.
4. Gave myself a bout of sciatica when Oliver and I learnt the dance moves to Bieber’s Sorry. I was bl**** sorry I couldn’t walk for two weeks an’ all.
5. Became a morning person. Bye bye lie-ins as kids don’t know the b***** meaning of them. I never thought I’d enjoy a morning run after the actual school run, but kids taught me that along with losing my sanity, I could actually have a personality transplant too.Who knew?
I’d love to read the things you’ve done in the name of love, maternal or otherwise.
Happy Valentine’s Day!