12 April 2012


I'm always banging on about other Bloggers' blogs but there' a great deal to be said for them and I love the community to which I now belong. 

Polly at the smashing Caught Writing - has tagged me on something it is quite painful for me to discuss - there are answers I think I should say and those I'm thinking underneath, but don't like to voice. 

It's now 10pm. The kids are only just down after trying my patience for the best part of the Easter Holidays. I am struggling with their fighting, am behind with everyone and everything and my blog has been the last thing to get my attention, but now bloody mindedness has set in, so here we are.

Polly writes her Q & A HERE, with a guarantee of 'warm and fuzzy feelings' for those of us she has passed this on to.  I very much doubt if there are any near the surface, but let's see what's lurking in the deep!

Describe Motherhood in three words:

[Thinks: Really hard work.  And perhaps I'm not in the right frame of mind to do this now!]

Says: I'm very lucky.

My babies came (naturally) when I was 41 and 45.

Does your experience differ from your mother’s? How?

[Thinks: My mother's possibly going to read this - be very careful what you say.].

Says: It's uncannily similar - both unexpectedly became single mums, both isolated from our families, neither of our exes behaved properly.  Fortunately, I am treated better by the State and Society.  My children do not suffer the same sense of shame my younger sister and I were forced to forty years ago.

What’s the hardest thing about being a mum?

[Thinks - Apart from getting up in the morning?]

Says: Having no family around me, friends miles away where I have moved around a fair bit.  My childrens' lives being limited without that extended network of Grandparents, Aunts, Uncles, Cousins and some of my best friends' children already being grown up.  i.e. Being alone with it all.

What’s the best thing?

[Thinks - Being alone with it all!].

Says: I don't think Nature intended us to tackle this child rearing business alone - hence, as I always say, there's a reason it takes two to make a baby.  It is utterly exhausting and not, I believe, in the childrens' best interests in the long run.  I am happy to make all the decisions and, even though I am now ensconced in a wonderfully supportive partnership, from which the boys benefit immensely, the buck always stops with me, but, any credit to be taken - and there's plenty - also stops at my door!

How has it changed you?

[Thinks: I'm a wreck.].

Says: I've found my backbone, have become less houseproud, less efficient, less bothered about everything, except my little Angels (ahem). I love them. My whole world revolves around them. I have a happiness, fulfillment and contenment I have never known.  We belong together, we're a unit - all alien to me. I hum for Heavens' sake! But. I swear. They. Will. Be. The. Death. Of. Me.

What do you hope for your children?

[Thinks: Everything!].

Says: I want them to be faithful to themselves, to listen to their inner voice, to be happy and fulfilled and in loving relationships to give me grandchildren as early as physically possible, to be well educated, to reach their potential, to have nice holidays / travel, to be blessed with fantastic physical health and maintain a postive mental outlook all their lives, to trust themselves, have self-belief and bat off any third party would-be-injurers in a way I am seemingly incapable of.

What do you fear for them?

[Thinks: Everything!]

Says: I try to enjoy them, really I do, but, being ancient when they finally came, I do worry about not being here for them, about being too tired and grumpy for them, any of us getting ill, bullies at school and in life in general, their lack of freedom in this day and age and, lately, the decreasing amount of humour allowed in an increasing number of walks of life. It's not normal. It's stifling. I want them to be happy.

What makes it all worthwhile?

[Thinks: Sleeping through the night.]

Says: Knowing I am very blessed to have them at all. Being loved back so fearlessly, honestly (again - an alien concept) and, despite my massive imperfections as a mother, totally unconditionally. Being with them every minute of every day. Which. Also. Drives. Me. Mad!  


I am tagging two women (both, coincidentally, authors and mothers of sons) who seem to enjoy a rather more special relationship with their mums than I am able to with mine and are thus much more prone to the warm and fuzzy stuff promised at the outset of this!

[I admit it though - some did rather start to seep through, naturally and I'm going to bed in a far better mood than when I started out tonight!]. 

Sarah Hague St. Bloggie de Riviere

Amanda Egan Mummy Misfit

I am also including Kate Takes 5 on the off chance she can invent yet another Listography of hers and Stay at Home Dad and Proud in case he feels like starting up a Fatherhood Meme of his own.

Anybody else who fancies it is welcome to join in!


  1. I agree with a lot of what you write about here - the worries and the joys, the hopes and the fears for our children.

    I'll see what I can come up with - thanks for giving me a topic to post about (was rather bereft of ideas). :)

  2. That was a really fabulous post. You spoke (and thought) from the heart and I smiled at times reading it. May all your hopes come true x

  3. Thank you Sarah. I always look forward to your posts and am sorry I am behind with your blog, but will catch up soon. Thank you for saying you agree with a lot written here - it's hard looking on at these 'ideal' units from the outside, despite the fact they're never as perfect as they might seem! Being a fellow single mum, I know you get that.X

  4. Hello citygirlnomore. Thank you for your kind words and wishes. Glad it made you smile and, being a mother two boys, I know you get it too! X

  5. Most of what you've written could be about me! Great answers and I love your writing style.

  6. Thank you Joanne. It's a relief to know I'm not alone with the utter exhaustion!

  7. I think I might have left most of my intended comment on Twitter :-( I loved the way you wrote this, with the "behind the scenes" thinking in brackets. It is hard work at times and exhausting trying to fit everything in most of the time, but it's clear your two boys are the centre of everything and they are very lucky to have you. Particularly like "what do you hope.." "everything" "what do you fear..." "everything". How true is that! Sums it all up perfectly. And the paradox of being a mum, we love them and want to be with them, but THEY.DRIVE.US.MAD. You have to laugh, it's an absurd situation! Thanks so much for being brave and taking the plunge, I loved reading this, a good honest post and not dressed up how you think people might want to hear it. Polly x

  8. That made me cry Polly, thank you. X

  9. Great, great post. Echo Polly - really liked the way you wrote it. Very punchy.Loved the honesty and the way you expressed the contradiction of being a mum - its wonderful but it drives us MAD. I'm yet to do this meme and feel a little nervous as my relationship with my mum was not great. Its okay now though.

  10. Great post, made me smile :)

  11. Hi OM. Thank you so much. I don't really think about the writing - it just comes. X

  12. Great read ! very thought provoking& true ! Can I join in....I'm 50 this year and come through the other side now, but was left a single mum of 3 at 27...(not older no!) but started at 17 so my older ! age range of kids then 10 7 and 14mnths! did the long haul & survived ....
    I wish you luck & know you can do it !

  13. Hello Debs. yes of course you can join in. Thank you for your endouragement. Well done you. Let me know when you've done it x

  14. Motherhood is a difficult but rewarding job to do and there are so many pros and cons. I'm not a single mum but I do make all the decisions so far as Amy is concerned and it can be quite draining sometimes.

    CJ x

  15. Hi CJ - I think more mums are more single than they let on and some quite prefer it that way!

  16. Great post. Isn't that just the thing, bring blessed and deeply frustrated in the same instant?

    1. Hi Ellen - You always manage to sum up an entire post of mine in just a few words! Thank you, - yes, that's just the thing!

  17. Brilliant post! Now, I have met your boys and I KNOW what a credit they are to you. You have done a mighty fine job there, lady!

    I'm particularly loving your answer to "How has it changed you?" - couldn't have put it better myself!

  18. Thank you Tania. Glad it helped you on one of those days!