12.13 – 1130 hours

Birdie (4.5), Buggy (10 months) and Mama (almost 30)

“Birdie? Do you think I’m a good mom?”

“I sink you a gwate mom”

what is it about parenting and it’s countless highs and lows and second guesses and reassurances? Why on earth do we choose this life of taking care of little lives? How does this life choose us? Because, let’s be clear, having done this 4 times over, the first times these new souls chose me, but then I chased after them. Keeping littles is terribly overwhelming and incredibly beautiful, and just when you come up gasping for air they take your breath away again.

Buggy at 8 months, in the sling

I struggled (I struggle!) with mothering.Certainly not the loving and accepting of my children, because they are easy to love, easy to rejoice in.

But I struggle with the nuance of it, the everyday practicality. I struggle with the feeling that I am doing everything wrong, and my children will never forgive me, and more than that, that my children will never bloom into the wonderful people I know they will be. I struggle with the fact that I was handed children, that we are all handed children who initially can’t answer the simple questions: “what is wrong? how can I help you?”, I struggle with the mandated selflessness that comes with raising children (oh eating breakfast right when I was hungry, how I miss you) and I wonder what that makes me.

Everyday I think: “Am I a wonderful mother yet? Am I doing a good job?”

Sleeping Bird

And then, late one Monday night around 10:30, after a day of adventures, and an evening of meltdowns with 3 or 4 instances of shouting (from me and the bird AND the buggy) and another night of my husband working late, one random Monday I turn to my oldest son, the child who chose me when I was least expecting it, and I ask him:

“Birdie? do you think I am a good mom?”

and he smiles, touches my face and whispers, in his little wee birdie voice:

“I sink you a gwate mom”

And in that moment, I am.

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