I am “Shut that alarm clock up” Mum

Mammy has been stressed since BEFORE she opened her Feckin eyes this morning… Why? Because of The Him.

You see The Him is tired and when The Him is tired he likes to play a game called “Let’s see how many times I can make the alarm clock go off before the love of my life loses the plot and physically kicks me OUT of bed game”.

This morning, he played that game and let’s just say, it did NOT end well. On the THIRD Snooze attempt, Mammy opened one sticky eye and whispered “Pleeeeease get up. You’ll be late.”

On alarm number Four, Mammy opened the other eye and hissed “Do NOT let that fucking thing go OFF again. If you wake the Baby, I will HURT you.” “I’m up. I’m up” says Him, very OBVIOUSLY NOT UP. In fact, the end of his sentence was punctuated by a guttural nearly-snore.

By now, I was stressed. I was glaring through his big dopey head, stressing about the fact that HE was going to be late for HIS work, while HE slipped back into the type of sleep that only a feckin MAN can! 😑

So there lay Mammy, WIDE AWAKE at 7am, the ONE morning the Minions slept beyond 6.30am this SUMMER, stressed that The Him was going to be late for work, while Him, the big Gombeen waited for his fecking alarm clock to sing at him for the FIFTH time…and SING it did. 😡 Loudly.

So loudly in fact that it did INDEED awaken the Minions across the hall, BEFORE it woke him. Actually, to be pedantic, it probably wasn’t the alarm clock that woke him… It MIGHT have been Mammy pulling the quilt off, putting her feet to his arse and pushing him OFF the bed, all the while serenading him with affectionate terms of endearment, some of which I’m pretty sure even HE hasn’t heard before! (And he worked on building sites for years, so you can imagine the colour Language of THAT morning wake-up call😅.)

Anybuts. By 10am, I’d calmed down. A bit.

And now, all is right with the world… We have a babysitter, I’ve stolen sparkly danglies from my Baby sister and we’re heading out for his birthday dinner tonight, so I can’t be too grumpy with him, but it’s safe to say that if an alarm clock goes off EVEN ONCE tomorrow morning, someone WILL get hurt. 😂😂😂 Have a Super Saturday Lovelies.

Anything exciting planned?

I am ‘So here’s the thing’ Mum…

“You will , you know!”

Everyone is the perfect parent…until they have children.”

Who said this first? I have no idea.

Who says it now? Me. Every single day!

I am the proud and enthusiastic Mama bear of a 5-year-old Drama Queen and a 21 month old Dictator. I spend my days winging it through EVERYTHING… breakfast, school runs, work, homework, dinner, bedtime, marriage.

Some days, I feel like I NEARLY have my shit together. Most days, I want to stomp my foot, throw and tantrum and call for my own Mammy! To many, I seem like I hold things together.

Those closest to me, know I’m a fraud.

I don’t know what I’m doing.

I don’t deal with everything in a calm and mature fashion.

I don’t adore my children every single second of every single day.

I don’t always have the schedule sorted.

I don’t always remember everything I’m supposed to.

I don’t always know what’s wrong with the baby, just by her cry.

I don’t always have a sparkly clean house. (Actually, I don’t EVER. Who does?)

I don’t always remember to wash the uniforms.

I don’t always want to get my No Diggity on in the bedroom.

I don’t always feed them homemade meals.

I don’t always give the right answer.

I don’t always say the right thing.

I don’t switch off my brain, even when it’s His turn to get up with them.

I can’t.

Because I “Mammy” 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Sometimes, I yell.

Sometimes, I bribe.

Sometimes the fridge is empty.

Sometimes, I’m so exhausted that I let them eat breakfast cereal for dinner.

Sometimes, I pretend I don’t hear the monitor and carefully kick Daddy so he’ll have to get up instead.

Sometimes, I let them watch TV…a lot.

Sometimes, I swear.

Sometimes, I wish it were bedtime at 3pm.

Sometimes, I cry so hard that my Husband doesn’t know what to say.

Sometimes, I like being at work because I get to finish a coffee in peace…and I don’t feel guilty. Sometimes, I get a babysitter and go out for dinner.

Sometimes, I hand the baby to Himself as he comes through the door and go for a run, or a pee. Sometimes, I feel like I’m so utterly useless that someone, somewhere will certainly report me to an authority of some kind.

But ALWAYS, I love. I am NOT a Stepford Mammy. I will never get it ALL right. No one can, because a perfect Mammy doesn’t exist, and as long as I love my girls fiercely, I’m already doing it right.

The moment that a Mammy realises that there is no such thing as “The right way” or “the proper way” of parenting, is light bulb moment. When you recognise that YOUR choices for your family are NO ONE’s business, a giant weight will be lifted off your tired shoulders.

You don’t have to justify your parenting. You don’t have to explain why you breastfeed, or don’t; why you chose this school instead of that one; why you put the baby in their own room at 3 months, or why they still sleep in your room 2 years on.

You don’t have to justify your parenting to ANYONE.

The ONLY people who matter in your home, are YOUR FAMILY. And nothing or nobody outside of that matters. If you are expecting your first Baby and reading this, with your jaw on the floor, thinking “I will NEVER do those things!”, You will you know!?

You will bribe.

You will eat leftovers.

You will survive on 2 hours of broken sleep.

You will use Babywipes for EVERYTHING.

You will hate your partner for sleeping. (Sometimes, you will hate them for breathing! 🙂 )

You will enjoy watching kids’ TV.

You will have a favourite CBeebies presenter.

You will spend your money on the best you can afford for your kids, while wearing a 15-year-old t-shirt yourself.

You will be so excited at the offer of a babysitter, that you cry. Oh, and you will cry; tears of frustration, tears of worry, tears of laughter and tears of pure, unconditional LOVE.

Because being a Mammy is sometimes crap, but it is ALWAYS wonderful.

And if you are wondering if you’ll be a good Mum?

You will, you know. x

I am STOP TOUCHING ME Mum

This Mammy loves hugs and squeezes and little chubby fingers on her skin.  Mammy loves kisses and Eskinosies and the feel of Mini-Me’s arms crawling around her neck for a hug.  Mammy is aware that when you become a Mammy, you are going to be touched, a LOT.  But Mammy is still, 5 and a half years on, not ready for the CONSTANT touching. 
It’s 24/7.  It’s mostly lovely, but JESUS, there are times when Mammy just wants to NOT be touched, even for a little while. 

LIke, a half an hour.  
Now, there is no harm in the Touching. It is usually quite acceptable and welcome. In fact, if we delve into the minds of the TOUCHERS in the house, it is clear that the touching is a sign (usually) of love and affection and it is important for affirmation of love and all that jazz, but sometimes, Mammy considers pretending to have Scabies, just so that everyone will piss away off for 20 minutes and stop TOUCHING her!

The Wobbler thinks:

Oh! There is Mammy.  I will touch her.  I will swing off her legs while she walks.  I will stand on her feet while she cooks.  I will sit on her head while she snoozes.  I will sit on her knee instead of on my chair.  I will sit on her chair along with her.  I will hold on to her hand so hard that if she tries to sneak away as I fall asleep, I will know.  I will insist on being lifted when I see her standing with nothing to do.  I will make special effort to ensure that if her tellyphoney rings, she will not forget that I am here, because I will tug at her leg until she lifts me and then I will rub her face.  I will stick my finger in her mouth.  I will stick my finger up her nose.  I will shove my finger in her ear.  Oh Lookit. Mammy is on the sofa.  That is my sofa.  I will sit on her head.  I will stick my hand down into Mammy’s bra to find the dodee that I didn’t hide there earlier.  I will touch her every time she walks by.  I likes to touch Mammy.  Mammy is soft and squishee and she smiles when I touches her so that is what I must do.  Always.  Forever. I am the bestest witto wobbler around.

The 5 year old thinks:

 I will ignore Mammy until I notice little sister sitting on her, and then I too will sit on her.  I will make sure she doesn’t feel lonely while she pees.  I will look after her while she showers. I will remember to ask her EVERYTHING when she is trying to talk to Granny on the phone.  I will ignore her in the coffee shop until her friend sits down to talk to her.  Oh Look! Mammy has sat at the the table. I must sit on her knee to make sure she doesn’t drink all of the coffee.  It is bad for her.

I will hug Mammy’s armpit.  I will stick my fingers in her armpit.  For some reason, I like armpits.  I must keep touching Mammy so that she doesn’t forget my existence for 3 minutes.  She must be touched as often as possible.

Mammy’s minions go to bed and Mammy wonders what feels so strange.  Is it the silence? Is it the calm? Is it the peace?

NO.  It’s the lack of touching.
Daddy comes home.  

Daddy thinks:
  Oh look.  There is my beautiful wife. She looks extra sexiful in those baggy PJ bottoms and my teeshirt.  I’m glad she hasn’t brushed her hair or washed her face today.  I like the smell of Bolognese on her face.  I have missed her so much that I must touch her everytime she walks past.  I will touch her.  I will slap her bum every time I pass her..  I will huggle her.  Mammy looks lonely there without the girls hanging off of her.  I will make her feel better.  I will hang off of her.  Maybe Mammy would like some hanky panky.  She has been here on her own with the kids all day after all.  I wonder did the baby hide her dodees in Mammy’s bra today..  Maybe I will check…
Oh.
Mammy is looking at me with sexy eyes…or maybe those are her I shall hurt you eyes… I can never tell.
“Don’t FUCKING TOUCH MEEEEEEEEEEE” screams Mammy.
‘Ok,’ thinks Daddy, ‘not her sexy eyes’.  Daddy realises. For some reason, Mammy doesn’t like being touched tonight.  She must be hormental.  
 Actually no.  Daddy remembers that this is The Touching Hour.    

Mammy needs her Touching Hour every evening.  It is like the Witching Hour, only more dark and dangerous.  And the chances of further touching depend on the success of the Touching Hour.
‘Where is the chocolate?’ Thinks Daddy.  ‘I should sit in the corner here and throw chocolate at her until she calms down’.  Clever Daddy.  “Will I make you a cup of tea?” asks Daddy.  Mammy snarls at him.  Daddy pours her a glass of wine.  Clever Daddy.  “Here you are Darling” he says, trying not to touch her.  
Mammy sips her wine, remembering a time when she used to pay people to touch her; When it was relaxing to have hands all over her in a smellified dark room in a spa or salon.  She would love to go for a massage, but that would mean someone else touching her and at this moment in time, that might make Mammy hurt someone.  
She looks at Daddy, who used to be the only person who touched her.  He is so lovely, she thinks.  He has a very nice bum.

After a while, Mammy walks past Daddy in the kitchen and slaps his bum.  “Yay!” thinks Daddy.  The Touching hour is over”, but Daddy lets Mammy pour another glass of grapes before he suggests such.  

 Daddy is clever.

Mammy sometimes feels like she lives with a squad of fecking Octopus…octopi?

But they are cute little octopi and by the morning, she will be ready for all the touching, all over again.

I am Start Taking the Compliments Mum

“Your daughter is beautiful.”   Aw she is, isn’t she? Thank you.

“I love her coat.”  I know, isn’t it gorgeous?

“Your son is so funny.”   Yeah, he cracks me up.

 

“You look gorgeous.”  Aye right, I haven’t even brushed my hair.

I love your top”   Penney’s best.

Those are nice jeans.”  Oh I’ve had these old things for years.

Is that a Hilfiger shirt?”  It was on sale!

 

Notice anything?

 

We don’t know how to take a compliment.  Nothing new there.  We all knowthat the Irish don’t take compliments well. We are suspicious of them. We don’t like them.  For some reason, they make us feel very uncomfortable.

But when someone compliments our kids, we are more than happy to agree with them. If someone points out something positive about your little minion, chances are that you will be delighted that they’ve noticed and you will nod in agreement, as proud as punch.

However, if the same person tells you with their next breath that your hair is lovely, you will most likely find yourself disagreeing and parting your hair to show them just how badly your roots need redone.

So what the hell is wrong with us?

If I tell Mini-Me that she looks beautiful or that her hair is pretty, she smiles at me and says “Thanks Mum” or “I know!”  (shock horror!)  She takes the compliment.  She doesn’t NEED it to feel better or to affirm her or any other such nonsense.  She takes it, because at 5 years old, she doesn’t find it strangethat someone would praise her or compliment her.  It is not unusual to her that someone might point out something positive.  She is not suspicious of compliments.  She doesn’t need to be.

So when does that stop?  When will she suddenly begin to apologise for her positive features?  When will she become flushed with embarrassment because someone comments on how well she dances?  What will happen to make her suddenly feel that she should disagree with someone who tells her she is clever, or pretty, or talented or funny?  Will she simply wake up some morning, feeling the need to apologise for being good at something, or for being nice?

Now, of course I know that we must teach them to be humble also.  No one likes a boaster.  But why the hell should we teach them that they should apologise for being good at something?  Why should we teach them to disagree with someone who is genuinely being nice to them?  

When did humility become humiliation?

Because somewhere along the way, we’ve confused the two.   

If someone admires your hair today, reply by saying “I know! It’s sitting nice today isn’t it?”  I dare you.  And watch their reaction. It’s pretty likely that they’ll flinch in surprise.  If someone admires your top, try “Thanks, I like it too.” (Would you have bought it if you didn’t?) If someone points out something that you are good at, thank them and tell them “Yeah, I try hard.”  

If they walk away from you thinking you’re big headed or conceited, then who has the problem?  If they meant the compliment, they won’t mind that you agree with them.  

Does it not make sense that if we were to let our kids see us accepting compliments more comfortably, maybe we’d be helping them?  Our kids learn by watching us, our behaviours, our responses. Someday soon, when Mini-Me hears me answering “Oh God, this old thing?” or “Aw my skin’s a mess” or “God now, I sound dreadful!”, then she’s going to store it in her bank of “Acceptable grown up things to say” isn’t she?  

And therein begins that humiliation.

We all do it.

I do it.  I did it yesterday when a friend praised me.  I automatically told him he was full of nonsense.  Why? If he hadn’t thought I was good, he wouldn’t have bothered to tell me I was, so why did I disagree with him?  

Because we are trained, somewhere along the line, to apologise for ourselves.  Because acknowledging our own strengths and positive characteristics is seen as terribly obnoxious and wrong.  Because one day, without even realising it, we learned that to accept a compliment was wrong.  

We’re hardwired to think the worst about ourselves; to worry about what others think.  Being a parent brings a new level of this.  We are constantly comparing ourselves, berating ourselves, apologising for our decisions, for our behaviour, for our children’s behaviour.  But the sooner we can rewire ourselves to look more closely for our own positives, the more chance we have of teaching our children that it’s OK to say “thank you” when someone compliments us.

Plenty of people will thrive on bringing them down, on highlighting their weaknesses and flaws.  We need to teach them to recognise those people. And we need to teach them that if someone feels the need to comment on them in a negative way, then it’s that person who has the problem, and not them. 

So accept the compliment.  Let your children hear you accepting it.  Let them see that it’s OK to be proud of yourself sometimes and that you don’t need to ever apologise for being good, or kind, or talented or clever.  

And give someone a compliment today too.  You never know whose day you’ve just made.

By the way, you have a lovely smile.


I am Swallow me up please Ground Mum

Tonight, I need advice.  😐
How does one get the ground to ACTUALLY open up and Swallow them? 

 Because if someone could work out an app for that, life would become soooooooooo easy.  😭
Today, we met my friend for coffee.  She recently broke up with Gobshite.  A grade A gobshite actually, but one of those Gobshites who was always nice to everyone, and so it’s difficult to actually say much bad about him.  
He was especially nice to my Mini-Me and so on the road to, (let’s say), Gemima’s house, she asked me: 
 “Will (let’s say) John-Joe be there Mammy?”   

“Nooooo Sweetie.  John-Joe doesn’t live with Gemima anymore pet.  They broke up so we won’t be seeing John-Joe anymore.”

“Never EVER again?”

“No Darling.  But it’s OK because Gemima is very happy since he moved out and she’ll be fine.”

“Ok.”
As we pulled into the driveway,  I remembered to warn “Don’t ask about John-Joe please Mini-Me.  I don’t want you to mention him while we’re here. OK?”
“Ok Mammy”.
Yeah right S-Mum. 😂😂😂 It took all of 3 minutes before she started.  
The conversation went something like this:
MM    Hi Gemima.  Where’s John-Joe?

G      Erm…

Me    Mammy already explained this Mini-Me, now go play with the cat.

MM    But where IS he?

G      John-Joe doesn’t live here anymore pet. We broke up.

Me    That’s enough now.  Where’s the cat?

MM    Well John-Joe was my fwend and I wuved him so you can’t have broked up.  Can you wing him and tell him to come back here RIGHT now so I can see him please?

Me      OK, Who wants a biscuit?  Mini-Me! Have a biscuit! (fuckitty fuck fuck!!)

MM    I don’t want a biscuit.  Why did you bweak up wif him?  I WUV John-Joe.  

Me   Enough now Madam. Hahah! She’s such a rascal. hahahhahaha  ( Where is the fecking cat?  Please GOD, send in the fucking cat.)

G    She’s grand.  Sure she doesn’t understand.

MM     I have a boyfwend you know?

G (smiling at the subject change)   Do you Sweetheart?  Who is your Boyfriend? 
And I KNEW, there and then, what was about to come out of the little Demon’s mouth…  I knew by her face.  I knew by the excitement on her face.  I knew because I KNOW her and her imagination… and I wanted the ground to open and swallow me up…
MM     John-Joe is MY Boyfriend.

(Yup.  She did it.😭😭  Like a mini Cameron feckin Diaz in a movie where she’s happily playing the mistress.  I couldn’t breath.  I looked at Gemima’s face, honestly uncertain about what I was going to see…  THANKFULLY, she was laughing.) 😄
G   Oh is he reeeeeeally?  Well good luck to you pet.  

MM    Well YOU bwoke up wif him, so you don’t want him anymore anyway.  Can I have another biscuit?

me    Yes Darling and then you can go out and play with the traffic…
Enter the blasted fucking CAT, 2 minutes too late.   “OooOoOOoh  CAT!  Hellloooooooo witto CAT!” she screamed as she ran out the door after the terrified and unfortunate creature. Better late than never. Stupid cat. 
And then we laughed and laughed and I’m pretty sure she did a super job to not cry, and we (half) joked that we would love a glass of wine rather than a coffee,(hahahahahahaha) and she joked about how funny Mini-Me is and how she has nothing to learn.
And I disagreed profusely because she has LOTS to learn, the most important and urgent thing being how to SHUT UP!  

Followed by how to say NOTHING when you’ve been warned to say nothing.

Followed by how to up her choice of Gobshite… but maybe we’ll leave that for another 10 years or more. 
I’m still cringing.

If the ground had opened, I would have jumped in, (but not before I’d grabbed the biscuits!)
How was your day?🍷
😘😘😘😘

I am Some Perspective on Father’s Day Mum

This column was harder to write than I had anticipated.
Why?
Because no matter what angle I approached it from, I found myself anticipating the negative comments from other people.
I am blessed to have only wonderful father figures in my life.  My own Daddy is the actual, official “King of all the Daddies in the world”.  (That is an indisputable fact and anyone who declares their Dad to be better, is wrong. Don’t even try to argue.)  

  But even though Daddy G is indeed The  King of all the Daddies in the world, to me, I would also argue that My Him is the King of all the Daddies in the world too.

And therein lies my problem, see?
Perspective.
If you are reading this thinking, “Well actually love, MY Dad is The King of all the Daddies in the world“, then YOU are right too.  But he is only the King of all the Daddies in the world TO YOU.(and your siblings!)
And if you are thinking “Hold up there S-Mum, my partner is actually The King of all the Daddies in the World, you silly mare!”, you are right too.
Because, we only see things from our own perspective, don’t we?
Today, those of us who can visit or call our Dads are blessed.  There are so many who wish they could,  Today, like Mother’s Day and Christmas and every other day of the year, is difficult for so many people.  There are empty chairs at so many tables, and they seem even more empty of days like today.  To my Lovelies with this perspective, I send my love today.
Others will read this and roll their eyes, because Father’s Day means little to them for one reason or another. That’s OK too.
Many Fathers will spend today surrounded by their family, opening endless bags of socks and Toblerone.  There will be packed carveries and Mr Hall-of-the-Mark shall be rolling in his money from all the cards and utter crap that we have binge bought over the past few days.  There will be lunches, and dinners and grandchildren playing and hugs and general appreciation for what we appreciate every day, but don’t always say.
But so many Fathers will spend today missing their children.  Perhaps because of distance.  Perhaps because of circumstance.  Perhaps through choice.  Perhaps because of someone else deciding they can’t see their child.  And while there are of course, so many who spend today alone for so many reasons, it is important to remember that those who are broken-hearted today, are still Fathers.

Again Perspective.
Like Mother’s Day, Like Christmas, everyone’s perspective of Father’s Day is tinted by their own experience and their own story.  While one person curses the day for the memories it stirs, another celebrates the day because of the year they’ve had.  One person hates the day because it makes them angry, another celebrates it because it makes them happy.  One person breaks their heart the whole day, another doesn’t give it a second thought.
What is it anyway?  It’s just a day.  It’s only a day.  But if you are in a position where you are blessed enough to have a Daddy or a Grandad or Stepfather or <em>any</em> Father-figure in your life, enjoy it.  Enjoy celebrating them and all they do for you. Call them.  Visit them.  Enjoy every second of today.
Because like every other day, we never know what is around the next corner.  We never know when our worlds will change.  And we never know how important seemingly unimportant days like today are, until we are forced to change our perspective.

And so you see why I found this difficult. Because my perspective will not always be the same as that of my reader, but that does not mean that one of us is wrong.
Whether you are celebrating today, or not, have a wonderful Father’s Day.   xx
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I am “So Is Daddy babysitting?” Mum


​For My Him 😚
Is Dad babysitting? Well actually, no.

They’re his minions too or Didn’t you know?

He’s just as responsible for our little girls

As I am. Imagine! It’s a crazy old world.

 

Imagine if Dads got the credit they’re due

For all of that “parenting” stuff that they do?

For the fact that he might have had something to do

With me having babies. Afterall, it takes two!
For the feeding and changing and burping and snot.

For the fact that he also can stand by the cot,

For the fear and the tears that he so often hides,

As he holds it together, while screaming inside,

 

For helping to raise them, for holding them tight,

For also being kept wide awake in the night,

For changing the bed when it’s covered in puke,

For the times when he’s tired and still reads her books,

 

For the washing he does, (even though it’s not often!)

And the times when he hoovers, or sticks on the oven,

For the hugs and the kisses, the cuddles and smiles

For the hours he works, missing them all the while.

 

For the phone calls and texts when he’s trying to work

For the airplanes he makes with a spoon or a fork,

For the times when he kisses my forehead and squeezes

My hand, for the friendship and even the teases,

 

For reminding me every so often that he

Loves me as their Mammy, but also, as ME.

For his laughter and strength, his time and his love,

Because while I was sent these wee gifts from above,

 

They aren’t just mine, and No he’s not babysitting,

(Ok I do most stuff), but who am I kidding?

He’s just as responsible for our little girls

As I am.  He’s not just their Dad.  He’s our world.