Parenting

What does it feel like not to be tired?

What does it feel like to ease out of bed

With a smile on your face, all set to embrace

The day of unknowns that’s ahead?

 

I only remember the joltings

From my sleep at “you’re kidding” AM;

For dummies, or milk, or things of that ilk,

And feeling “Here I go again”.

 

What’s it like spending time getting ready

So you’re really set up for the day?

To consider your dresses with minimum stresses

And wear just what you’d like to each day?

 

I can only remember the scrabbling

For clothes close by and uncreased and clean

Speedy makeup, brush hair, and no time to care

If this top really goes with these jeans.

 

What’s it feel like not to be rushing

To the gym, work or the supermarket?

Not to have to text mates, let them know you’ll be late

‘Cause the toddler just weed on the carpet?

 

I only remember the running,

The “get a move on”s and “please hurry up”s

The skipping of meals, subbing trainers for heels,

Necking coffee lukewarm in half-cups.

 

What’s it like not to plan around children?

Around naptimes, and bottles and bums?

What’s it like to just live in the moment

And take everything as it comes?

 

I’m sure there was a time when I came first;

When I just had to think about me.

There sure was a time when my day was all mine

And I could take an un-audienced wee.

 

I could wear clothes that wouldn’t hide milk stains,

Book impromptu all adult soirées.

Go for drinks after work and get drunk, go berserk

And then wallow hung-over for days.

 

But now I’m a parent, it’s different.

I hardly go ‘out out’ at all.

Instead I push swings and play with plastic things

At the small people’s each beck and call.

 

Now I’m a champion cuddler,

I’m a maker of hidden-veg lunch

I do kid-drama sessions; my Peppa impression

Is definitely best of the bunch.

 

Nowadays I get to hand-hold

I put plasters on sore little knees.

I wipe away tears, carry bags and give cheers

And guess where they’ve hidden my keys.

 

These days, it’s not always easy.

It’s hard, unrelenting and tough

There’s no time to blink, and I constantly think

Am I doing this all well enough?

 

But wherever would I be without them?

If I’d never turned into a mother?

If I’d never breathed in and smelled new baby skin

And never known love like no other?

 

I can’t imagine my life without them

And I don’t want to think how I’d weather

If we couldn’t just be our unique family

Making life, best we can, all together.

 

I wouldn’t be less of a person

I just wouldn’t be what I’ve become

And I like being me, though it’s tiring, I see

That I love being Me, as their Mum.

 

I thank them for shaking my life up

With their crazy, all consuming glee

I know life without them (and their total mayhem)

Would be life as a less type of me.

Michelle Harris 2016

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