But aren't we all just making this shit up as we go? Or is that just me?
Before I had children of my own, I had such lofty, ridiculous ideas of what a perfect mother was like. For the record, Mr 5 informed me on Saturday evening that I AM one. A perfect Mum. I guess that settles it. Oh, and it involves giving them hot dogs for dinner and putting Scooby Doo on the telly, just in case you were doing it wrong. You're welcome.
My pre-children lofty ideals involved nothing of the kind. Sigh.
There is probably a reason why I was so deluded. Until I had children of my own at age 30, I really had little to no experience of being around babies or children. Except for being around a younger cousin or two, and perhaps nursing them now and again, absolutely nothing. I never babysat or really spent any time being a full-time carer of a child or children.
I was so judgemental of other parents. If I heard a child having a tanty in a shopping centre I would be the first person to roll my eyes in scorn. My children would never behave like that! If I saw somebody feeding an infant commercially prepared baby foods, I'd shudder. How hard could it be to puree home made mush?
I have always been a shy, quiet and introverted person. I also have an official diagnosis of Asperger's Syndrome. This happened at age 40, three years ago. Somehow I did vaguely realise that my extreme need for solitude and quiet time would be a challenge for me once I had kidlets. However, I still wanted them. I figured I'd probably have two children at the most and that they would most likely be quiet little bookworms like me. Wrong.
My boys are quite articulate and love a good chat, particularly Mr 10. They're not shy and say whatever they think without reserve. They also make me laugh constantly, which is a plus. On the flip side, there are heated arguments and rivalry. This means constant noise and attempts to smooth things over and restore peace.
I also didn't realise that having children meant remembering stuff. A LOT of stuff. Like their names. I mean, there's a reason I call all three of them 'honeybunch'. Shut up. It beats constantly tripping over their respective names until I hit the right one.
Don't get me wrong, I love my boys passionately. I'm the kind of mother who can hug her children and say 'I love you' a million times a day, but on a practical level I'm sadly lacking. I couldn't organise a piss-up in a brewery, as the saying goes. I'm also extremely ad hoc regarding routines. Even when I have managed to sustain a good habit, such as exercising everyday, I don't have a routine. I just do it whenever, at different times of the day.
I suck big sweaty balls when it comes to time management and multi-tasking. I'm constantly off with the pixies, so I suddenly snap out of my little world and realise it's dinner time when my stomach starts growling. Somehow, I'm quite astonished that the Dinner Fairies haven't arrived. I realise with a start that I'm the one whose supposed to be wearing the fairy wings and tiara. This is my job.
When I do try to plan in advance and write lists, I'm STILL quite capable of forgetting essential stuff on the list. Alternatively, I'll end up forgetting to take the list. This means that I'll try to rely on my dodgy memory and become confused about which ingredients I needed for which recipe. Plus, I agonise over making decisions about the simplest thing, so I don't really like grocery shopping. I tend to just randomly chuck things in to avoid this pointless indecisiveness and then end up buying way to much crap.
By the time I've lugged all the crap home I'm too overwhelmed to cook, anyway. I find cooking for a family everyday a chore and somewhat stressful, instead of the relaxing ritual it seems to be for some people. So I stick to the most basic, boring meals of meat and veg, or salad, spaghetti bolognase or roasts. Sometimes (okay, a lot of the time) I cheat and buy a cooked chook to have with salad or just order take-away. Then, I feel guilty that I'm bringing my boys up on crap.
I'm constantly going on at my boys about picking up after themselves, but the truth is, I'm just as disorganised and messy. At least I've got hypocrisy down to a fine art. Winning!
Unfortunately, Mr 13 seems to have inherited my tendency to forgetfulness. He forgets and leaves things at school, such as his sport uniform. Then I forget to ask him when I pick him up. I end up feeling sorry for him because I suspect a lot of 13 year olds are similar, except they have a mother who's got all that shit covered. On the positive side he also has a good heart and a sense of humour and I'd like to think he got some of that from me too, so it's not all bad.
When it comes to teaching my boys organisational skills, I may as well attempt to teach them how to speak fluent Japanese. NO FUCKING IDEA IN HELL.
I rarely talk about my
The shrink (I say shrink because it's easier to spell) who diagnosed me assured me that some women on the spectrum that she sees are sometimes quite austere and don't like to show affection, not even to their children. She added that from a psychologist's (did I spell it right?) point of view this (showing love and affection) is much more important than routines and a spotless home. I cling to those words everyday. She may have just been trying to make me feel better but it's all I've got, so don't rain on my parade, okay?
So yes, my boys may always live in CHAOS*, but there will also be cuddles! LOTS of cuddles. And cakies! Let's not forget about those. As if I could. Shut up.
* CHAOS stands for Can't Have Anyone Over Syndrome. I read this on somebody else's blog, but am unable to remember whose. So if I stole it from you, sorry! But I did mention my memory issues. Erm...what was I saying?
Are you a forgetful person?
Do you ever feel like a hypocrite?
Linking up for I Must Confess and Laugh Link
And a VERY belated link up with The Lounge.
No, I didn't forget, I just have dodgy internet connection. Outta here.....