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"O where, o where has my Spon-ta-ne-i-ty gone?
O where, o where could it be?"
This year I have been making many pledges to myself. Trying to find the 'Me' in 'Mother'. Ever since I became The Mum, everything that (I thought) I was, everything that I had dreamed for myself, changed. On my very first day as a Mum, I had new priorities and there were two of them (twins). They were my new world and nothing else mattered. Well, that is not entirely true, because my Darling Hubby mattered, and I mattered, but I couldn't get my head around how to fit 'us' into the priorities anymore. So I began editing madly, like a frenzied Tarantino. Social life was over, too hard! Cut! Jewellery and accessories? A choking hazard! Had to go. Cut! Friends? Most were still single and carefree. Schmoozing and cocktails was definitely out. Gone were the 'Sex and the City' days, hello 'Tired and the Bleary' days. Cut! Cut! Cut! Reading and writing? Are you serious?! My treasured novels were replaced by a 'How-To-Raise-Twins' manual, and the only opportunity I had to proudly display my delightful penmanship was when writing out the endless grocery lists I handed over to Hubby: Go Forth and Shop! I could not find the time nor strength for anything else in life which was not baby-related. Well, that's not entirely true. Hubby and I must have found time for something because I was pregnant again by the time the twins were 6 months old! Three babies within 16 months!!!!
The whirlwind that is Motherhood, I've found, has stripped me of my Spontaneity. Remember the thrill of being able to just leave the house at anytime, and go anywhere, and do any old silly thing you felt like? I miss those days. To survive (and for your kiddies to survive) planning, scheduling and researching (generally) make life as a Domestic Goddess much easier. Let’s see, there are Meal Plans, Daily Tasks, Weekly Planners, Laundry Days, Grocery Days, Sex Days (just kidding...or am I????). Cooking, cleaning, washing, ironing (ha!). Some days I just feel like I’m living the same day over, and over, and over again. Which brings me to the dreaded word ....'Routine'. Granted, things tend to run smoother in life when we stick to it, but 'routine' hides another word: 'rut' , and I'm pledging to get out of one.
Somewhere under the Mum is the 'Me'. She's been very patient and obedient for the last 5 years, a model citizen, but somewhat frozen in time. I fear she's been feeling a little bit forgotten and unappreciated. She used to be daring, exciting, spontaneous! The girl that set off to buy toilet paper one dreary morning in London, and found herself 3 hours later on a flight to Menorca with her bestie, enjoying 3 days of sangria, communist youth hostels, secret nudie beaches and Espadrille heaven! Oh, spontaneity! I miss you!
‘What about me?’ pouts the inner-Girl of Yore.
‘Yes? What about you?’ replies the exhausted Mummy-Me Exterior.
‘What about all the writing, and the travelling, and the designing, and the creating, the villa in Tuscany and the Academy Award I was going to win?’ (High hopes, a girl can dream).
‘Well, you have CHILDREN now, you have a HUSBAND, YOU HAVE RESPONSIBILITIES!!!!’ says the Mummy-Me, as she gives the overflowing baskets of laundry the Evil-Eye.
‘Yes, but can't I still do things? I promise I won't get in anybody's way?’
And that's the sad truth. I'm slowly trying to find ways of doing things that will enhance my soul and my being, but without it impacting or detracting from my family time. It's a juggling act, and as is often the case, I just drop the balls and give up if my family needs me. Mother Guilt is the nagging voice that kills off spontaneity, and more often than not, I heed her call. I started up at the gym last year, signing up to a 12 month membership. I've attended sporadically 10 times in the last 12 months. I was given gift vouchers for sewing and bagmaking courses which I had desperately wanted to do, nut they ended up expiring because I stayed home to tend to sick kiddies. My family needed me. The scary thing is though, I'm almost setting myself up for a fail. I find it's easier to just opt out of a situation because I half expect it to fall through anyway.
Ever heard the of the term "Getting ready to get ready"? I think Dr Phil throws it about alot. It basically refers to preparing, planning, researching and scheduling your next step in order to take the Next Step. I’ll admit, I've been doing this for a while now. I think it's best known as PROCRASTINATING. I’m probably the Queen of Procrastination. Well, not anymore, sister! I've had enough of it! I'm not going to just say things and wish for things to happen, I'M GOING TO MAKE THEM HAPPEN!! Ladies Who Lunch? Ha! I'm going to be the Lady Who Launched. Taking the plunge, going out there, facing my fears and jumping off the edge. And Blogging has been my very first step. I've always loved to write. I have a trunk filled with journals and sketchbooks from when I was a child. Growing up I was never without a notebook or pencil. But I had stopped writing over the last 5 years and it had almost felt like a part of me had died. Do you know the TERROR I felt when I pressed on that little orange 'PUBLISH' button for my very first blog post? I may as well have been posting rudie-nudie pics of myself all over cyberspace, that's how exposed I felt. But I DID IT!!!! Yee-haaaaa!
This year is all about Inspiration and (Re)Discovery. I'm surrounding myself with beautiful things and ideas that uplift, inspire and enthrall me. Searching for the exciting, sparkly, shimmery things that make life magical. Bringing Adventure and Spontaneity back! Seeking the thrills! Not just for me, but the whole family! If mummy sparkles and shines, the family will enjoy the benefits. A Happy Wife = A Happy Life!! Through the fabulous wonders of Blogging and Social Networking, I have connected to, and been inspired by, so many women out there who have created their own businesses around their families, making beautiful objects that they love, following their passions, strengths and talents. IT CAN BE DONE!!!
And that is my Mummy-Mantra: 'Don't just dream about it. DO IT!!'
Follow your dreams, follow your heart.
What are YOU waiting for? xxx
*First published on the super duper MUMS LOUNGE Billboard