Anyone that says being a mum isn’t hard work is lying. It’s bloody hard and at times I’ll openly admit, I feel like I don’t want to be a single mum or even a mum. That said, in reality I do, overall I love it more than anything, it’s the hardest but the bestest job you’ll ever do. Children test you, the push the boundaries, they push buttons, push the limits, push your patience and quite frankly at times they literally push you (that’s a recent lesson lady P has been sat on the naughty step learning). But then, they do something small, something cute, something loving, just something and your heart melts into a million pieces.
I think mum’s are too afraid to admit how hard it gets. A friend of mine on a recent walk to the park admitted to me that she hated maternity leave and was glad to go back to work, she told a story of feeding her crying child, crying herself as she spooned purée into his mouth. It’s tough, really tough, I have times when I feel like sticking a price tag around toddler P’s neck and putting her on eBay and seeing what I could get for her. Truth is I don’t want her to go anywhere, I don’t even want a break from her, I just want her to understand, I want to take away her frustration as well as mine.
I sat on the toilet the other day and cried, I just needed to let it out. Toddler P is a strong willed little lady, she’s absolutely hilarious and has a wonderfully vivid imagination but she’s also 100mph. She has a strength and determination that amazes and frustrates me. She wants to run before she can walk and do everything herself. This can make navigating things testing, she gets an idea in her head but can’t communicate it or execute the action properly. She’s learning how to behave properly and right from wrong now and it’s often a battle of wills and if she’s going to learn I’ve to not give in otherwise she loosens that her tantrums or negative behaviour gets her what she wants. However, it’s not always that easy, outwardly I’m remaining calm, outwardly I’m trying to help understand and learn but internally I can be really struggling and thinking that it would be easier to give in but long term it wouldn’t be. So after a trying day the other day, I cried and just wished that sometimes someone else was there just to intervene or help for 5 mins. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve a large wealth of loving support as a single mum and I’m grateful. But it’s not a break I need, it’s not someone taking her for a day, or hour or afternoon, I don’t want that, sometimes I just want someone to watch her while I pee in peace, or someone to help get her to understand that she cannot have crisps for breakfast or someone else to fathom out her nonsensical toddler tantrum about the water bottle that she wants in her hand and upstairs all at the same time.
All that said, I’m also so lucky to have a child, a child of my own in a happy loving home with me. A daughter that is health, happy and developing well. A daughter that’s my best friend, that I have such a strong close bond with that she knows me inside out. She knew after my cry, even though it was in secret whilst she napped, she knew I’d struggled and she was different that evening. She snuggled up next to me in bed, she stroked my face, kissing my cheek until she fell asleep and believe me she never does anything like that at bedtime-it’s usually toddler Olympics as she performs pyjama gymnastics in her cot in a bid to stay awake!
I do love being a mum, I do love being a single mum. I just find it hard, as every mum does and I get frustrated with the social norm to pretend that everything’s ok and that we’ve got this because actually not every day do we and it’s ok to admit it’s difficult. Every mum is figuring their own battle, every mum has something they’re struggling with and every mum has moments where it’s tough and they just need someone to pop the kettle on.
I love being a mum, I love my daughter but I’m not afraid to admit that it’s bloody hard work.