The right way down a wrong way street

Things are going wrong. Drastically wrong. A sure sign I suspect, that things are beginning to go right. There aren’t many people who know me well who wouldn’t use the words ‘anally retentive’ at least once in a three word choice to describe me. Colour coded charts are my passion. Checklists and to-do lists are my best friends. Perfect retail therapy? A rampage in a stationary shop – the more colour segmented notepads and highlighter pens the better.

So you can imagine I embraced motherhood with as much energy, exhuberance and practical planning as an A4 folder with colour dividers would allow. I religiously followed Gina Ford’s rules to a letter, I enforced Annabel Karmel’s healthy menu’s to a tea, I restricted TV, drowned in Arts & Crafts and read each book enthusiastically 164,493 times (sometimes in one night it seemed). I put pressure on myself like a cherry on top of an icing cupcake of pressure. But recently things have been changing. I’m not sweating the small stuff any more – perhaps because I’ve so much big stuff to sweat these days.

Last week alone, I did so many ‘wrong’ things, I might as well have been following the Bad Book of Parenting. Here’s a few tasters:

  • I let the girls watch TV still in their pyjamas. At 3pm.
  • I took them to Eddie Rockets for burger and chips because I couldn’t be bothered to make tea and fancied somewhere that threw away the plates
  • That was how my precious baby who only eats home-cooked organic foods celebrated her 3/4 year – with a chip in each hand and 4 in her gob.

  • I didn’t wait for the girls to be in bed before I opened a bottle of wine – it was 6.15 and the sun was shining, and I thought I should raise a toast to the glowing sky
  • I didn’t retch, scream, or pull out my hair when circumstances of a day out meant Ruby didn’t go down for her 12 o’clock sleep until 3pm.
  • One day I rejected every pore in my body and sat on the sofa while Ruby slept and the girls played and ……. read my book. I did not hoover. I did not bake. I did not clean behind the pot plants. I read. A Book.

I’m wallowing in my wrongness. I’m rather hoping this week is an utter disaster.

About Grin & Tonic by Alana Kirk

Bouncing into middle age armed with courage, ambition and a pair of tweezers (chin hairs for anyone over the age of 45 reading this) I am a writer with a mission: to redefine this midway point in my life when the last thing I want to do is hang up my high heels and become invisible. This is the end of the beginning, not the beginning of the end. A single mum to 3 fabulous girls, an author, and a fundraising consultant, both ends of my candle are on fire. As I enter this new stage of my life, I want to explore what it means for 'mid-aged' women today, who were promised they could have it all, ended up doing it all, and just do not identify with the traditional image of middle age.
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6 Responses to The right way down a wrong way street

  1. cath c says:

    brilliantly put.

    i just blogged similarly about caving and making a dayglo cupcake mix rather than an organic from scratch home baked good.

    we must be on the same page. ๐Ÿ™‚


  2. Sascha says:

    Thank you, thank you, thank you for making me feel normal. The above could have been written about me last week. Maybe if we all admitted to doing these things then maybe we might all start to feel a little less guilty?

    Great blog.


  3. Oh yay you!! You know what – I think the 3rd child sends you over the edge. I was very like you too – but with three little people you just can't do it (well it would take a better person than me to anyways). I like to think I'll have more relaxed happy kids for it. Enjoy your new approach to life ….. I think it's the right one :O)


  4. Loving you even more after reading this post! I have been finding the every day increasingly more difficult. I put high expectations on how I raise my boys and I am fiercely independent when it comes to caring for them… I virtually NEVER accept help. But lately, I don't mind admitting, I have been feeling a little out of control, like things are getting the better of me. I am sure it has to do with going back to work in 2 weeks. Though it's only for 2 days per week, it is going to change things around here yet again! I'd love a 3rd child, but I'm unsure how I would make that work, when having 2 children has me feeling the way I do. Such a refreshing post and you are definitely not alone in your feelings or actions :o) xo


  5. Foodie Mummy says:

    Isn't that the right way to keep your mind though and not go completely crazy? X


  6. WELCOME TO MY WORLD! And I only have ONE which is no excuse at all! ๐Ÿ˜‰ Not the same thing, but single parenting has made me let go a lot too. And it's been really, really good for me. Weirdly, although it's been the hardest year yet, I've enjoyed this last year more than any other time.

    Enjoy your new way xx


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