February 1, 2018

I always wanted to be a mum, mostly because my own mama made it look so darn fun. And chic. And cool. She was the mum who danced around the kitchen to Dire Straits songs and turned up to parent teacher meetings in pink Reeboks. She was the mum who wore crazy wigs and turned our kitchen into a witch’s grotto. She was the mum who sneaked me into Pretty Woman when I was 12, and always stocked the fridge with enough junk food to feed all our friends. Perfect, crust-off cucumber sandwiches weren’t her style. She was more of a sloppy BLT mum. But I do remember her making a mansion out of immaculate marmite sandwiches once for my brother’s school fete. There was a little path, and trees and flowers, too –– all made out of fruits and vegetables and twiglets. As we drove to school, with the house on my brother’s lap, she braked abruptly and the whole thing went flying. Every inch of car was covered in florets of broccoli, carrots, chocolate buttons and slices of buttery bread. It’s the one and only time I ever remember my mother unraveling. We all cried a lot in the car that day. I can only imagine how lousy she felt. It’s a horrible feeling to come undone in front of your children. And that’s the one that stands out. But most of the time she made us feel like she was having so much fun, that she loved being our mum.  Because she was. She did.

Footnote: I called my Mum today, and she says it was more log cabin than mansion.


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