This morning as dear husband was leaving for work, he posed something quite frightening to me.
DH: What are you going to write about today AP?
AP: Ohh I don't know, I got nothing. Bloggers block. Sigh.
DH: Why don't you write about your mother?
AP: Spits coffee all over buddy dog. WHAAAT? WHYYY? My gawd..nooooo.
DH: Why not? Just write about what it's been like raising a baby without your mother?
AP: Toweling down buddy apologising profusely with liver treats in hand, scratching head, rubbing face.
DH: Have a good day AP! Love you. Closes door.
AP: Whatevs. Sighs again.
So he put the idea in my head and now of course I can't get it out. Pondering over it all morning (it is now 11.30am) I have decided to cave. Fine. I'll write about it. Here it is. But it will be brief 'ish'.
I'm the youngest of five and my mother left the family six months after I was 18 and moved away to go to uni. She stayed until the baby had grown up and left the coop.
That was just over 13 years ago. Oh darn it, now you know how old I am. Boo hiss.
The decision to cut ties with us was hers. We will never really understand why. There have been several attempts to make contact by some of us, all met with a closed door.
I won't go into any more details, it is what it is.
Over the last 13 years she has missed three of her daughters weddings plus the arrival of four grandchildren. The latest one being my little master in January 2012.
I don't discuss this situation very much and only those close to me know the details. The reason why I don't openly make it known is that unless people know me really well, I feel as though they just won't understand and as such would judge me in being the worst daughter in the world. Plus unless they have been in my shoes how could they possibly comprehend what this has been like.
So keeping this close to my chest has made for some awkward moments during general conversations over the years, especially when I was pregnant.
Work colleague: Oh your mother must be so excited that her daughter is having a baby!
AP: Yes, actually the whole family is excited, thanks. Oh look, a bird just flew into the window. How 'bout that!
Work colleague: Will your mother come up and stay for a few days once the baby arrives?
AP: Oh err..no..no she won't. Actually she would drive me mad! Laugh laugh, rant rant.
Work colleague: Oh I know, my mother drives me mad too! Haa haa.
AP: Quietly exits the lunch room, does a few commando rolls under the desks to escape.
Friend of friend: I just don't know what I'd do without my mother, we are so so close, you know?
AP: hmm yes, indeed, how lovely. Need a top up? I'm heading to the bar. Bolt.
That's how it is. Not discussing it time and time again relieves me from the painful conversation and possible judgement from others. And besides, it can be too draining especially when I just want to get on with my work day or be out having a good time.
On the upside, I am an expert in changing conversations at the drop of a hat not to mention my commando rolls.
So how have I managed over the last seven months without that one person that many new mothers rely on so much.
You may have noticed the photo of the mother duck with her baby ducklings above. I took this photo this morning whilst walking to the shops. How gorgeous.
One mother duck with her offspring. Watching their every move and gently guiding them along the way.
The next photo below shows the same mother duck with her brood but surrounding her are other ducks. They may be her mate, friends or ducks she has bumped into along the way.
It doesn't matter where they came from. What matters is that she is surrounded by others who too are keeping eye on her and her duckings. They don't need to be related but regardless, they are her family.
Starting to get my drift? Joining those dots are we?
I am so fortunate to be surrounded by my husband, father, siblings, in-laws, friends, other mothers and past work colleagues. Especially my sister, who at times has been my big sister, best friend, pediatric nurse, chief boob squeezer, tear wiper, chef, counselor and mother all in the one day. Actually make that one hour..
I am so lucky. We are so lucky.
Who knows what the future will bring with regards to being in touch with my own mother. I think about it every day. Time will tell.
In the meantime I will carry on with my own brood and happy little master who his adoring fans just love to pieces.
That is all. Rant over, but now suddenly I feel so guilty for devouring that red duck curry on Saturday night...quack.