I lay here in my bed and I think about my children, something I do best! Something I do all the time, even when I am not with them. I am always thinking about them, day in and out. Judging myself, questioning my every action; did I discipline Sophia correctly today, did I manage to teach her how to share, did I do okay to ignore Archie moaning because he wanted what his sister had, did they both eat enough at lunch, did I manage to do anything right.
No matter what you think as a mum you put yourself on a pedestal, where you compare your every conscientious move and your every loving thought. Diligently preparing meals, dressing them, wiping bottoms, cleaning up after them, engaging with them, running after them, tripping over their toys. It’s all part of the great journey of motherhood. At least that’s what I tell myself; that I’m learning, and I’m growing with my children. I may be judging myself but I am forever developing myself too.
Drawing myself closer to becoming the quintessential mother I hope and try to be.
I have to remind myself to stop judging what I am doing, let things happen, let things unfold.
I especially noticed this the other day; I try my hardest to not interfere too much with my children when a snatching fiesta takes off. I would much rather use those ‘you better share’ eyes then scream and shout. Sometimes I can’t help it I get all mumsy and try and take control of the situation, as you do. But I try and take a step back more than usual because I have realised in order for each to benefit entirely from each other they need to build their bond alone. No one forces a bond to be made, and sometimes interfering can cause more damage then it can create order.
Of course I interfere when not only is there screaming, and yelling, but fireworks and blow horns going off right in my front room, but when there are the odd quiet disagreements I let them sort it themselves. Not only do I notice how quickly they begin smiling and playing with each other again afterwards, but, I can feel they have somehow managed to strengthen their connection and relationship after a squabble, that somehow never escalated. To me this is so heart warming to experience. To watch my children not only enjoy each other’s company but cement their beautiful ever developing bond gives me goosebumps and butterflies all at once.
There are several moments were this has happened and I have smiled softly to myself, my heart bursting into millions of tiny flecks of pride. Been so thankful for what my children gave me in that moment.
Just recently they were both playing in the garden each doing their own thing. Then all of a sudden like bees to a honey intruder they swamed over to the Little Tikes outdoor car we have. Well I was ready for the screeching, high pitched girly scream of my son, because of course Sophia would have made it to the car faster with her long legs and super cheetah like speed to anything she so desires.
My eyes tightly scrunched up waiting in the dark for those unpleasurable sounds to escape my sons mouth. But I heard nothing. I bravely and slowly unscrewed one of my eyelids, my brown eyeball scarcely peering through the wrinkly skin housing my eye. As if like a cartoon sketch both my eyes opened faster than the speed of light.
Sophia was holding Archie’s hand trying to help him into the car and explaining to him to be very careful, Archie carrying the biggest grin on his face it could be worn all over his body like a big mounstrous ‘I have the best big sister’ sticker.
Sophia’s sweet facial expressions and gentle hands touching his, their soft skin and dainty little hands holding each other’s made me so happy.
There is something so kind and gentle about a child’s touch it is so caring so full of love, just one touch can make me tear up.
It actually reminds me of a time before I had children. A close family friend of mine, her little boy, touched my knee and lent on it to get past, (it was summer and I was in denim shorts) it nearly bought tears to my eyes how soft his touch was and how lovingly he swept his small little hand across my knee to get to the other side of the room. It’s that memory that has stuck in my mind, and every time my children touch me so gently, even when Archie is breastfeeding and he sweeps his hands across my stomach, I am reminded of that moment. Their touch somehow reminds me just how lucky I am to have them, and not to take their embraces for granted.
My kids were playing, and I was expecting something else to play out, I really saw how well their bond is forming, how Sophia is taking the archetypal big sister role as teacher, and leader. He lets her, willingly guide him and nurture him, most of the time! And it’s just this that teaches me that I don’t need to judge myself, rather just let myself be present in each and every moment. That’s enough.
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