I know nothing lasts forever.
(And we both know hearts can change. An’ it’s hard to hold a candle. In the cold November rain… Ahhhhh Axl Rose. Who knew what great philosophical insightfulness was lurking under those dirty long ginger locks, corny lyric-ed power ballads and that sweaty red bandana??)
Anyway, instead of trying to squeeze into one post all that has been going on inside my brain for the past couple of months (you know, since I assured you I’d be pulling my finger out and posting something every week…sorry about that), I’ll resume by sharing what’s been going on over the last 7-10 days in my Mummy life. It’s something that’s probably been creeping up on me for a while, but which I’ve only just been able to articulate. It’s been pretty shocking. And I’m struggling to fully come to terms with it.
I no longer find everything my child does: cute.
Yep, the honeymoon is over. Gone are those heady days where the boy could burp and fart adorably, be super cheeky (read: borderline rude) and smooth it over with a sparkly eyed giggle, or get away with jumping all over my bed at six in the morning because my eyes were glazed over with the gorgeousness of his funny little knees. Nope, it seems, that after three and a half years, reality is kicking in, and some things he does…are just really annoying. (Just so you know, my knuckles are crammed into my mouth as I attempt to stop screaming “BAAAD MUUUUMMMYYYY” at myself).
It all started with this noise he’s begun to make. If you can imagine a really whiney, pitchy and LOUD “ehhhhhhh” which ends on a particularly torturous high note, then this is the noise. It is now used in lieu of actual words (which he is perfectly capable of utilising) on various occasions, but of course particularly in times of, let’s say, frustration (anger, tanties, sleep deprivation and the general losing-of-shit would also be appropriate descriptions). It’s a noise that just can’t be ignored, and can in no way possible, be cute. To make matters worse, it’s crossed over into the realms of crying, any tiredness communiqué and fake laughter, which used to be my pinnacle of cutie-cute-cuteness!
It is now dead to me. The whininess killed it.
The ending of an era was further reminded to me on Tuesday when I picked him up from day-care, upon which I was nagged not to forget his “artworks”. Let me paint you a picture (yep pun intended). The first few times paintings came home I was elated. Delighted by the sweet little creations conjured at the hand of my darling heart. Seriously, I kid you not, I was pretty convinced he was an artistic genius, comparing the green dlobs of paint to the vista that abuts our property. I framed it and picked the location which would best compliment the light and shade in which to hang it…I bloody curated that thing to within an inch of its life. No shit, it was awesome.
What I collected earlier this week: not so awesome. In fact, it was rubbish. Literally.
It was one of those black polystyrene meat trays (you know, that your chops come on), with a red pipe cleaner stuck on it. Titled (apparently): My Birthday Cake. Uh Huh. (To be fair, he hasn’t had a very good reference point for birthday cakes). This was accompanied by a large piece of white paper with about three chunks of white masking tape attached. And piece number three was a cardboard cat food box with some holes stabbed in it. Oh yes, find us some gallery space we brought home a freakin’ exhibitions worth of stuff.
So. A few things were running through my mind, not least of which was: has this childcare centre run out of f@$#ing paint or something?? I was also thinking of where I was going to keep these things at home, and how they could surreptitiously be disposed of without little feelings being hurt. But most of all, I was thinking: I’ve turned into one of those mums I failed to understand just a couple of months ago. Those whose eyes rolled when special projects were brought home to be displayed; that groaned at the prospect of some crafty delight having to take centre stage on the dining room table, or who, evil of all evils: chucked them, free from guilt, straight in the bin!!!!
I totally get it now.
It kind of falls into the next challenge faced by my motherly tolerance threshold this week – talking. The non-stop, repetitive, unrelenting kind. I worried a bit about my son and talking (that is, worried A LOT) earlier on, so all those knowing remarks which went something like “once he starts he’ll never stop” or “you’ll be wishing he shuts up soon” were met with feelings of disbelief and an attitude of I am never going to wish my son stops talking.
Yeah, well, never has arrived my friends. As the “What’s that? What’s that?” has finally turned into “Why? Why? Why? Why? Why?” and he’s coming out with such pearlers as “I’m sick of this” and “I don’t like it” and “I want (insert everything here)”. Yep, it grinds on your nerves and you just want them to shut up. Today, after a couple of weeks of feeling like a bucket of dirt and knowing I look like one too, the boy takes to calling me moustache for part of the afternoon.
Admittedly, it was a bit funny. (Even though he did have me running to the mirror to check that excess facial hair wasn’t another issue I’d have to add to my current list). Not long after, he decides to hold a concert for me, a game growing in popularity (and just to set the scene for the upcoming info: is based on a small local festival he’s recently attended). He stands atop the coffee table and announces “Ladies and gentlemen: Welcome to the concert!” Super cute so far. But then this: “I am the singer!” Pause. “Mummy, you can be the food tent.” The food tent!?!? So now I’m fat and hairy????!! And irrationally fragile (?!?)
Yes. Shut. Up.
But as I sit here writing this, being hounded almost continuously for food, to come play, to stop computing, or to just “Look at me! Look. At. Me!!!” every two seconds, he redeems himself by creeping silently to my side, arm behind his back, he instructs me, in a conspiratorial little whisper to close my eyes. Upon opening them he yells “Happy Birthday! Surprise!” (not really my birthday BTW), kisses my cheeks in turn, snuggles into me, he smiles up and presents me with a yellow weed flower from the backyard.
And it was pretty damn cute.
Centre & Bottom: Writer’s Own (Yeah meat tray + pipe cleaner: you can’t make that stuff up)