Saturday, March 29, 2008

Wet days and pesky kids

So we ventured into Sainsbury's mid afternoon. It's one of those days when the sun doesn't penetrate the gloom and any attempts to jollify the situation seem somewhat half hearted and insufficient. So, after a few hours of carefully distracting the girls with books, colouring pads, games and anything else not produced by Microsoft or Nintendo, I surrendered to cabin fever and drove to the local supermarket.
Since becoming a Mother eight years ago, I still recoil (every single time) from unsolicited offerings of advice, unless they are useful and productive.
Gems of wisdom differ greatly from the bleeding obvious.
At the counter, having just paid for two comics, I took them away from my girls, telling them to wait until we get home. They look disappointed. Disappointment is part of life, right ?
So the checkout assistant, who looks no older than about seventeen, casts me a disparaging glance and (whilst idling picking her bejewelled nails at the same time) said
` I used to hate it when my Mum did that; I was terrified of her`
And then I got to thinking. Are my daughter's terrified of me for witholding their comics for all of fifteen minutes? Whatever happened to patience? Whatever happened to manners?
I see examples of instant gratification everywhere and have fallen prey myself.
Most people think me too soft and indulgent, rather than bolshy and unfeeling.
I remember what 'terrified' me when I was growing up. The threat of a hard hand across the back of my legs.
Kids today. Don't know they were born I tell ya.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Why am I starting a blog ?
Well, having an annoying tendancy to jot down thoughts on the back of old Christmas cards and then lose them soon after, I thought it safer. Wherever I go, whatever I do.. my words will remain forever in some tiny corner of cyberpsace. It's a comforting, reassuring thought.
I am no ditzy Bridget with my head perpetually stuffed into in some self-help tripe and my heart planning some eco-trip to Mali. Camping = dirt and I like to stay clean.
I am not called Sharon and I am not 29.
I don't talk about sex in public ( the public airing of my sex life as opposed to chatting about having sex in the open air, just to clarify ) so if you're looking for a risque read, go elsewhere.
I am 34 and I live in Bedfordshire which is a Shire County. Naturally.
I have two daughters, aged 5 and 8. They are mostly sweet natured and affable but can be impossibly strong willed and awkward.
Wonder where they got that from then ?
My eldest had her ears pierced at the age of 6 and this is what I wrote when we returned home:

Forever altered

She is forever altered.
Diamond studs glint dully in the freshly damaged flesh,
like a cautious warning of hurried youth.

Perfect skin stapled for the function of beauty,
on my exquisite daughter, who is barely six years old
and unmoved as she grins at my troubled face.

All the begging finally paid off.
and my defeat is lost in her utter bliss
as she fingers the foreign metal in her ear

and ponders on some new unrealized wish.
`Don’t worry Mum, it didn’t hurt an inch`, she explains
with a faraway laugh, as she strokes my hand.

`Oh good; what a brave little girl you are`.
If only she could really understand.
She is forever altered.

Not wanting to favour number 1 offspring, here's something I penned for number 2:

Between a Mother and her daughter

She is smiling in the shadows, eyes wide open
Her scent is sweet cocoa powder sugar
As she grabs a strand of my hair whilst curling her legs around my waist

And I think:

This daughter of mine will leave here one day
And no one else, no one, will ever know how extraordinary she is.
There is a moment of recognition in those thick lashed hazel eyes;
As she smiles and cups my chin in her baby girls hands

She is so comfortable, so content.

And I think:

If this moment could be preserved
Forever; if every miniscule detail could be vacuum packed, potted and preserved
So that it might be reproduced at some later date to appreciate properly;
Oh, how sweet that would be!