As I was considering this post I wondered if it was correct to categorise it as a bragging post, but then thought no, it's all about positive affirmation for me, as a mother.
It's very easy to judge ourselves harshly, as mothers. I imagine there might be some women out there who are confident of the job that they do, who rarely or never experience self doubt, or concern that they are damaging their children in some way, but I'm not one of them. I actually, and this is as close to bragging as I'll get, I actually think I do a pretty good job. How do I judge that? Well, my girls are firstly happy, for the majority of the time. We spend a lot of time together, happily, and I consider them both articulate, sociable, polite children and I guess I acknowledge that I (and of course Geoff) have had a lot to do with that. Even with all that good stuff, I still worrying I'm doing things wrong.
So, with that in mind.... Yesterday Leila's kinder group hosted a Mother's Day morning tea. The children made scones, whipped the jam, set the little tables with tablecloths and arranged vases of flowers for us. We had a little music performance then shared their cooking together, all very pleasant. The highlight, however, was in a display book that their wonderful teacher, Miss Annette, had put together. For each child there were two pages. On the left was a picture painted by each child of their mother - Leila is a really good drawer so it was almost a mirror image of me, aside of course from the purple hair and bright red cheeks! The entertaining page (and p.a. side of things) was to the right of the painting. Each child had been asked the same questions by Miss Annette and she had recorded their answers for all to see. I don't yet have the copy so can only share a few key answers that I remember.
Q What is your mummy's favourite thing to do?
A Spend time with me and Ella.
Q What makes your mummy most happy?
A Spending time with me, dadda and Ella.
Q What do you and your mummy do together?
A All sorts of things. We do sewing, gardening, we make bread (I love my mum's bread), we play monopoly, and I like to make up soup recipes with my mum which I make and mummy drinks. (hence the photo above)
Q What does your mummy smell like?
Q How old is your mummy?
A Something like 32.
Clearly the last two questions are lovely from a vanity perspective, but the others I found really telling. I looked at some of the other mum's comments and some of them, well I felt so sorry for the mums and for the children if the answers were accurate. One stuck out when asked "what do you do together?" and the child answered "nothing, mummy's always tired from tidying up all the mess I make so she just likes to watch tele".
Now I know that children don't always present things EXACTLY as they are, but for me, I found this really, really the greatest gift of all. Forget what anyone else thinks because honestly, what my three best guys think is what matters most to me. But really, my littlest girl thinks that the most important things to me are being with her, just spending time together and that's what makes me happiest. You know what she's right and I feel great to know that she knows it.