Monthly Archives: December 2016

I just want you for my own, more than you could ever know

Oh my darling Lucia, we have just spent your 5th Christmas day together and it was a privilege. You were so excited about Santa’s visit that you barely slept on Christmas Eve, which of course means neither did I, thanks for that!

I was up until 1am wrapping your presents, listening out for your little footsteps in case you appeared in the living room and all the magic was lost. But you managed to stay in bed asleep until 3am so I filled your stocking and left it on the end of your bed and snuck off to my bed hoping for a good rest before the fun and games began on Christmas morning. But it was not to be and 3 am rolled around too quickly.

I haven’t been feeling very well at all these last few weeks which is why I have been a bit tireder than usual and walking bit slow that usual. I have been trying my best to keep it from you, I don’t want to tell you am sick again because I don’t want you to worry but I don’t want you to think that I don’t want to play with you. I am trapped in an impossible situation.

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After your Barbie Dream House was constructed yesterday, 3 hours – thanks to your dad for delivering it un built!! – you asked me to play but by that point I was literally on my knees with pain and exhaustion, lunch had been cooked and eaten and I fell asleep on the sofa, the pain in my legs woke me up and there you were with nanny, happily playing with your toys. “Play with me mummy” was the refrain of the day and I kept saying ‘ later darling, I have to cook lunch” ‘later daring, I’m a bit tired’ and you looked so crest fallen, you were so patient, I prayed for time to go faster so it would be time for you to go to bed and I could stop refusing you play time with me. I never want to wish away our time together but I didn’t know what to do, we put on our pyjamas and got into my super king bed and you watched youtube toy reviews while I cuddled you and I silently cried while you sat on my lap, it was the worst day of parenting I have ever had, I let you down, I wasn’t the parent you deserved, luckily I have a streaming cold so you thought I was just sniffling as usual.

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You are so precious and amazing and I couldn’t give you the thing you deserved and needed, my undivided time to do with me as you wished. That is the real price I pay for having a chronic illness. It’s not the lack of ability to have a social life, its not the frustration at the endless pain I cant control, its not the fear of a liver transplant, its the fact that I cannot be the mother you, my child, needs and deserves. I can never have that time with you back again and all you will remember about this year’s Christmas day is that I didn’t want to play with you. As the time passes I hope that is not the thing that stands out, let it be the big tacky dolls house with ALL the sound effects, please.

Lucia, I love you so very much, more than I can express, there is no one else I would like to send my time with. As you left with your father this morning to have Christmas with him, my heart broke and I wanted the time back again, I want to be well, I want to play Barbies with you.

I’m jealous of the way the rain falls upon your skin.

I have previously written about the “Cult of busy”, and I still feel that society seems to equate being busy with being successful, its the grown up version of being popular at school I suppose. “Can’t stop, I’m super busy right now” read- “I am so amazing at what I do that everyone wants a piece of me, and I still look amazing, I shag my husband four times a week and I go to the gym before work. blah blah blah.” I may be exaggerating but really, is this the aspirational lifestyle we as women are faced with? It must be to some extent or so many women wouldn’t claim to be living it.

Or do we fall into the other camp? the recent rise of the “slummy mummy”. “Oh I don’t feed my kids organic fish fingers ¬†and I’m always rushing to get them to the school gates on time”(as I stand in my gorgeous Boden jumper – tap for credits), read – “I’m not a prefect mummy but goodness don’t I look good without trying. I’m not a slave to convention yet I am raising fantastic children”. This has become aspirational too. It is all starting to feel too curated. I appreciate that we all curate our lives to a certain extent, before the rise of social media too, we present to the world what we want them to see, the version of us that we wish we could be or would be all the time.

I know what you see is not reality but sometimes I just can’t help it. “Why aren’t I as pretty/glamorous/dynamic/exciting/dynamic/successful as her?” Errr, because we are all different, I am me and that is OK. And “she” is normally at least 10 years younger than me. See how I set myself up for a fall?.

Am I jealous? yes. Does this make me feel good? No. Does it mean I am not satisfied with my own life? Maybe. Does that worry me? Yes. Compare and contrast is a hideously self destructive game to play. We really are our own worst enemies as well as our very best cheerleaders but at the times that the negative takes over it is often hard to see a way back.