Just like my varsity days I woke up this morning in a pool of pee, vomit, a little bit of poo and a cupful of tears.
Unlike my varsity days it wasn't all mine. Nor was it the skanky one night stand's I had made out with before passing out, unelegantly wasted!
Nope, bar some of the tears, all other body fluids belonged to the newest member of the Connor Clan. He's got reflux and spends a lot of the time screaming. I know moms go through this all the time but I read so much more into it, because hes adopted. Does he not like me? Does he not like his new family? Is his projectile vomiting his way of telling me we all chose wrong?
Motherhood is hard. In fact it's a f***ing minefield. Besides the obvious misadventures of having children, there's the guilt we place on ourselves of not been good enough, of not doing enough, of not caring enough, of not been the prefect mom!
Three years ago our house was 'normal'. It was Mark and I and our four dogs. We nipped out to meet friends. We flew off to exotic destinations. Our money and our time was our own. And then Emma came along and things changed. Things got better. Our house was a home and we were a family. I also became a member of the MOMS (moms offering moms support) club, a club I've always wanted to be a part of. Unlike high school and varsity days I thought this club wasn't dependent on what I looked like, how much I weighed, what clothes I wore, what my hair looked like, where I hung out or how I danced.
Finally a club without judgement and conditions. All sorts of moms belong to this uber-awesome a-maze-balls club. There's yummy mummies and MILFS (okay not ones I would like to F***, but that other men would like to). There's moms with partners and moms doing this godforsaken thankless soul crushing mind numbing thankless (oops I already said that) job on their own.
There's proud new moms, there's guilt ridden moms of a 2, 3, 4 kid household. There's 'natural' moms and IVF moms. There are moms who have adopted and moms who have gone to the ends of the earth to be just that, a mom. With such diversity, such strength, so much courage and self sacrifice I thought this club would be about nurturing, sharing experiences, helping each other out through this quagmire of motherhood and coming through okayish on the other side.
I am proud to be a member of this club. I look forward to seeing photos of friends' babies growing up on Instagram and on their blogs. I love that the women I 'know' see the need to take time out for themselves with a coffee catch up, a lunch or even a shopping spree. I love tweet ups where I get to see my cyber pals and can brag, gloat and bemoan the ups and downs of been a mommy. Time out for me is to read a book or shave my legs. Sometimes I'll even try for a haircut to make me feel better. Days out for me involve my children, stained clothes, unwashed and unshaved armpits, shitty nappies and very yucky upchucks. But it's all okay when there's a friend sitting opposite you at the cool hang out spot looking EXACTLY the same.
I know when Ben came along last week I was proud to be a part of it all. The love and support I got from Twitter, Facebook and my blog was overwhelming. The way everyone went out of their way to send a message or a gift was unbelievable. The moms (and friends of moms) who sent clothes and bottles and presents and everything else you can't even imagine was humbling and a reminder of just how awesome moms and women in general are. I couldn't get by without twanswers from other moms whose baby has had reflux or twokes about the things their kids have said. It reminds me I'm not just a mom, I'm also human.
As adults I think we've earned the right to spend our valuable time and money anyway we want. As mothers I think we've earned the right and the stripes to relax however we choose. I can sit in the corner with a 'woe is me' attitude (and I do occasionally) but as a working mother with a husband and four dogs I try and find my happy place as often as possible. And so when I get the chance to shop, drink coffee, have my hair and nails done, get a massage or a facial, tweet, facebook or dare I say it, dash out and meet another member of the mommy club, I do it without hesitation.
It's like chicken soup for the soul. Without the stains on your clothes.