The Mother

(A caveat! I am writing this in celebration of Mother’s Day. I massively respect and value all fathers too of course, husband very much included, but I am here to celebrate Mothers today).

This one is personal. I wanted to write a piece on the Mother this year. As a mother of three, aged 8, 5 and 3, this comes first-hand and from the heart.

mother and son | mothers dayModels. Laura Dodd & Rocky. Photo. Amie Milne & Studio Thomson.

Everyone’s experience of the pandemic has been different. I do believe that no two experiences are the same and every experience has had its up’s, its downs and its complexities in varied measures. 

The Mother, I believe, has been hit hard, something that can be backed up by statistics! The Mother’s role has always been unsung. It is a role that is a form of expectation, juggling it amongst the rest of life, a role that you are biologically born into. This biology creates a maternal instinct that, without choice, forms a protective and nurturing streak, something that has been ignited by this global pandemic.

Over the course of the last year Mothers have juggled teaching, parenting and working, all as full time roles, and all within a single 24-hour period. The handholding through lessons; the technical challenges of school log-on’s and hand-ins; the constant mealtimes; the piles of washing; the caged emotions and attitudes; the halted friendships… and then the day job that pays for life, rent, mortgage, food and survival. 

This multifaceted role is unsustainable. Mothers are said to be superb multitaskers, and this is true, but this kind of structure requires compartmentalisation. It requires the headspace to focus on work, independent of the surrounding mayhem, and this has not been possible! So, there are decisions and priorities that have been forced upon a Mother, ones that have resulted in the sacrifice of wellbeing and ones that have created guilt and stress.

One piece of advice that I can offer you all this year is to really treat the Mother’s in your life. They are exhausted, they are emotional, and they are without time to think about themselves. It can be as small as a hug and a thank you, or as big as a gift to remember this crazy time by, but a little something really will make a big difference. The reality of the Mother’s spirit is that she will look back in a few years and think how lucky she was to spend so much time with her children during this crazy pandemic!   

mum and me | mothers day

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