You might have noticed that I am very attached to my 5 year old daughter, who has lately taken to calling me ‘mummy’, and to using words like ‘brilliant’ and ‘loo’ . I never thought I wanted kids, but then she came along and rocked my world 5.5 years ago, causing me to feel love like I had never felt before. The kind that takes your breath away. I could go on and on with the cliches about motherhood, but I won’t. She has been my inspiration, my guru, my pure true love. On a daily basis, she helps me see the extraordinary in the ordinary.
That said, I don’t have any guilt that I am very much enjoying my days to myself, while she is in school. Not just half a day like before, but aaallllll day. When we were preparing to move to London, every school we inquired at told us there was no space available, particularly just for 6 months. I prepared myself to use London as the classroom and home-school her. During the month of December, when we were together 24/7 searching for a flat, moving, and when I was sick, I realized that maybe being together all the time wasn’t so good for us. Remember back in high school/college, when you passionately pined away for your boyfriend? School, and perhaps your parents, didn’t allow for you to be together all the time. Hence the pining. I’ve decided there is definitely something to that old saying, absence makes the heart grow fonder.
I’m not going to say that I don’t miss her, or that I’ve been able to let go of the neurotic worries that pop into my head out of nowhere when she is in someone else’s care (i.e., what if she chokes on her banana I sent for snack?). But while she is at school, she thrives. Let me say that again: she THRIVES. It is better than we ever anticipated; she is happy as a clam every morning when I drop her off, and can’t wait to tell me all about her day when I pick her up. While she is at school, I thrive. I go to yoga class, I write and work, I plan our London adventures. I have time and space and quiet, without the constant distraction of wondering: what is she doing/is it good for her/is it causing any damage. When we spend the evenings and weekends together, the fact that we are thriving in ways unique to our age groups enhances the way we relate. It’s like we learn our dance moves all day and then come together for a perfect waltz, without stepping on each other’s toes. It’s absolutely, positively lovely.
Cheers to the journey of motherhood: the mundane and marvelous places it takes you, and everywhere in between.