I’d absolutely love it if this was some inspirational post about being the sickest and coolest and most epic Momma Bear – which I realise makes me sound so incredibly uncool – but it’s all about when Momma Bear is sick and boy do I know what that’s like.
It’s one of the first worries most parents who are expecting number two have. It was something I often thought about but brushed it aside considering my sister has four kids and seems to manage with balancing four personalities. But lately the sting of the reality of caring for a baby alongside a four year old has crept in. The last few weeks, as I look at the curls lengthening on Little Missus’ head, I wonder if she’s losing out as Little Bean demands more attention. I truly feel outnumbered and underpowered.
There are days, quite a lot of them actually, when I don’t feel like the adult in this Momma Bear / Baby Bear scenario. Little Miss sidled up to me one afternoon this week and wrapped her dainty arms around my legs and hugged me hard. The little mite, in her four tiny years and few short feet, has grown up so much in the past year but so desperately needs her Momma’s hugs. And I hope she always will. In that instant, as her arms squeezed me tight, I thought, dammit I needed that. I needed that hug. And I also thought, dammit I’m the Mom.
Maternity Leave Is Not A Holiday – thank you very much. Before I left work at the beginning of May, I heard a few passing remarks such as, “It’ll be great to have so much time off”, “You can relax. You deserve it,” “You’ll have a great time,” and “I’d love a few months off like you.” Well, I’d love the hot coffee, the long toilet breaks, the lazy wander around Pennys on my lunch hour and the adult conversation but you don’t hear me saying how easy you have it at the office now do you! No, maternity leave is not a holiday.
Today, Momma Bear and Papa Bear have realised something. Something that has crept up on us as we’ve lived and loved our days. Something that really shouldn’t have been so shadowed and hidden. And yet, it feels as though change came knocking, unlocked the door and gracefully let itself in without us knowing. Today, change gave us a bruising. A slap, right across the face. Almost a wake up call. Don’t miss these days, these hours, these seconds. They will soon blur.