Recently I went out for dinner with a group of mum friends and a few of them were saying that they liked the blog, but then it turns out that I made another mum feel bad with the Fruit Roll Ups. She, like me, has four young children and said that she thought she was doing ok and then saw that I had made these fruit roll ups and that made her feel like she wasn’t doing enough. Now this was all a light-hearted conversation and friendly teasing, but it got me thinking that maybe I could have made other mums feel bad and that I might not be giving a real enough view of the chaos that is our lives and how very imperfect our household is. here is so much pressure to be perfect as a mother and believe me I feel this pressure. I am not sure where it comes from really as I don’t feel like my friends or acquaintances actively make me feel that way, but still I feel it. I hate the idea that I might be part of creating that pressure as I started this blog to share the honest experience of mothering and so I thought I should set the record straight about our day to day.
- For every day that I make a fruit roll up or pre-prepare stacks of hidden vegetable tomato sauce there is another where I am tearing my hair out and my husband comes home to me having a good old cry because I can’t manage the children. These days end with a takeaway! Oh and by the way I throw away loads of what I make as this lot are the fussiest eaters EVER!!
- For every home-made snack there is a cupboard full of purchased ones and a sweetie box. I just love to cook! I always have and now that the kids are here that means cooking for them. This for me is a form of relaxation. I do it for fun as much as anything else so please mums don’t feel bad that I have made snacks. If it helps my children wear wrinkled clothes as I gave up ironing when the twins arrived (smooth and fold all the way here!)
- For every craft activity there is an hour of cleaning and usually lots of cursing under my breath (or not if I slip up) about the fact that someone has taken off their painting apron and has ruined another t-shirt.
- For every happy photo of the kids playing nicely there could be another one where they are battering one another or having a full blown screaming tantrum, but I can’t take a photo then as I am too busy trying to pull them apart or distract the tantrum thrower.
- For every time that I write about a great family day out or activity that we have tried there is a pile of washing building up that I haven’t done, clean clothes to be put away and a load of cleaning chores that have not been done. There is also a load of stress that has gone before that trip with me running around like a blue arse fly trying to sort out all of the crap that we need to take everywhere.
- For every ‘potty training success’ and tips post there is a puddle of wee and a pile of poo on my floor that I have had to clean up. Oh and by the way my last little who I thought was potty trained is in fact NOT!!! AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH! She has had a total potty training regression. Today I cleared up at least 4 accidents. I am all out of ideas of how to fix this issue.
- For every time I get down on the floor and play with the kids, do an educational activity or head to the park there is another time where I stick on a movie or give them an ipad just so that I can get a couple of minutes to hang out the washing or make them some food.
- For every time I have a fun day there is a another where I am so frazzled by the constant calls of ‘mummy’ that I hide in the loo just to get some peace and quiet.
- For every time I plan a meal or come up with a hack to make things run smoothly in the house there is another where we are running around like lunatics with me hollering at the children to get them down the road so we aren’t late for school AGAIN!
I do mean to share some of the crazier days and when it all goes wrong, but whilst I want to be honest I am not one to dwell on the bad stuff; I never have. In fact my family say I live in a bubble. I don’t even remember some difficult times in my life. My memory literally blocks them out. I generally do try to be as positive as I can be not just in my blog, but in person too and I really do wake up each day thinking today will be better. The kids usually have this notion dispelled by around 8am, but still its good to have hope – right?
So when you read my posts (and I hope you will keep reading) know that I am so far from mother earth it is untrue. I am shoutier than I would like, I am impatient, I am irritable (A LOT) and I am tired – so very tired, but I love those littles more than anything and also feel very lucky to have them all and the chaos that they cause. I want to be the best mummy I can and lets face I am a feeder so I, in part, express my love through making them food that will hopefully help them to grow into healthy people, but I let a lot of stuff slide and every cupboard in the house is stuffed with things that I have filed in the too hard box and deal with later box…
I made another mum feel bad and that makes me feel like a dick as the reality is I struggle every day and mess up regularly. I want to be part of the solution and someone who helps mums not part of the problem. So to that mummy and anyone else who I might have made feel made I am sorry and please now that I am totally in the same boat and struggle just as much. Blogs and instagram are a snapshot of life and not all of it, but from now on I am going to try to be more conscious about sharing some of the tougher times as well as the glossy instaworthy days!