I am a mother. Of two girls. 6 and 4. Period.
I hope this will suffice and give justice to all my poor tolerance levels, impatience and mood swings - not to forget the 'bad-mom' guilt?
On any normal day, mornings are literally a war-fare - right from waking up to wearing the socks to choosing the mode of transport to school. Even if any one of these tantrums doesn't happen, I can mark it as a good day. Like the other day morning, as long as I was out of sight of my lil one, she was doing perfectly fine with her father: woke up, brushed, bathed and dressed up for school. Near the end of breakfast, she announces 'Oh no ma! I haven't created any problems for you today!' (Aiyyoo amma! naan innum unna paduthave illa). As if getting on my nerves is a part of her daily routine. She is so used to make me scream, that she finds something amiss if she doesn't get on my nerves. So, as and when I was about to call it a good day, the size of the socks becomes a problem, she declares it definitely smaller than her sisters' and manages to create a fuss just before leaving for school! Target accomplished!
The best part about these is that even after so much of fights and screams, they manage to smile and wave me good-bye till they turn out of my sight without the slightest bit of bad emotion.
The other day, when my elder one was enjoying herself in the swing in our balcony, she calls out to me 'Ma, can you sit beside me in the swing for some time? I like it when its just the two of us!' I wanted to tell her that there was loads of cleaning to be done, but, there I was, sitting next to her, trying to forget my work-pile. We talked in the swing, for how long I didn't notice. But I noticed the butterflies she was showing me, how she liked to grow a garden in our house, liked to bring the street puppy home as her pet, the shapes the clouds were forming, and things that I usually missed in my hectic, always-on-the-run life. I realised that it was these little things which mattered most in my kids life, and I was missing them. I need to slow down. I need to be doing more of understanding and less of shouting! I look back and try to understand my kids more!
When my kids say stomach-ache, its 'You don't eat enough! Its hunger'. When its my 'those' days, they provide their pillows for my tummy, and say 'It will be alright!' Talk about consolation!
When they complain of body pains after an extra playful evening, I don't have the energy to massage them for more than 10 mins. When its me who is tired from office, they hold my hands and lead me to the bedroom and massage me till I am fast asleep. Talk about empathy!
When they get on my nerves, I shout 'Bad Girls'. But even when I shout at them, I still remain 'Good mommy' to them! Oh, how easily they forgive me and how guilty that makes me feel! If only I could master this!
Even when I am being in my worst looks possible, or my cooking is too bad, or one of my new dresses does not suit me, I have never heard my girls telling me that 'It's bad!' It would always be 'Not good enough!' or 'It looks only OK', but never in the negative. Never ever! Talk about positivity!
They would wake up early on festival days, simply to watch me draw elaborate kolams in front of our house. And they would call out to any passer-by on the road and ask 'Isn't my mom's kolam beautiful?' Even though this leaves me embarassed before the next-door neighbour who has put a much bigger one than mine, I beam at my daughters' tone of pride. Talk about sense of belonging!
I'm learning, and I am growing up! I realise that:
- It is ok, if the house is in a mess, clothes waiting to be done and the toys scattered on the floor. Nobody in my house cares about it anyway!
- It is ok if my girls take five more minutes to brush their teeth. She is consciously doing it to see if any more of her teeth are shaking.
- It is ok if the soap gets wasted for another five minutes. My lil one is trying to make the perfect soap bubble, which she likes.
- It is ok for them to make the regular tantrums. It gives me something to make fun of them when they grow up.
My girls are teaching me the art of enjoying life, come what may!