I'm going to start by saying this: I am not a Stepford wife. I am real, I am me and I am far from perfect, even on a good day. On that note, the last 24 hours have been some of the hardest I have had in a long time. Last night I basically had no sleep. I spent the hours battling pregnancy insomnia, multiple trips to the bathroom thanks to morning-noon-and-night-sickness, and heartburn set off by near continuous puking.
Then - from the moment she woke up - my daughter decided that nothing's right today. She didn't want to wear the clothes I tried to change her into, instead wanting to wear pyjamas, then changing her mind and wanting a specific dress. She tipped her breakfast all over the floor, even though I made her exactly what she requested. She spilt her drink all down her dress, meaning I had to change her (again!). Just before lunch she decided to disappear behind the sofa, pull down her knickers and poo on the floor. Obviously telling me she needed to use the potty or toilet was just too difficult.
It has been one thing after another all day, when all I want to do is chill out and rest up.
Being 25 weeks pregnant can be hard enough. Add to that working at home running Mama Naii's Crochet, being a housewife and - most important of all -being a mum of a two and a half year old toddler, my life is certainly never dull.
If you were to walk in my house at this exact moment in time, you might be forgiven for wondering if a mess bomb had exploded.
There is crumbs on the carpet, toys strewn around the front room, crayon marks on the fire place, and stain remover soaking into various spots (mostly where the poo managed to drop as she walked around the sofa to tell me what she had done). I have washing up on the draining board as I haven't had time to put it away, and washing on 'the chair' (we all have one!) due to not having the energy to take it upstairs and put it away. My washing machine is half full just from the bits that require washing after all the 'accidents' of today. I'm not even sure I've opened all the curtains around the house today.
I try to be the best I can be, to keep a clean and tidy house while raising a good, polite, happy child. On days like today I feel like a complete housewife and mummy failure.
Despite the OCD part of me crying at the sight of all the stuff that could do with fixing, tidying, moving, and cleaning, I have made today about spending time with R. A few things we've been up to include: spending time in the garden, sitting on the sofa and reading Winnie the Pooh (three times), and snuggling together in front of Paw Patrol. Most importantly I gave up on getting her dressed and just let her run around in a t-shirt and knickers, and you know what? I don't feel bad about it either. Think of all the washing I have probably saved myself from!
A lot of motherhood is learning to adapt. The most important thing for me, about being a mother is not about being perfect, it's simply about being there.
My children will not remember if the washing was neatly folded and put away in the correct cupboard. They will not remember if the kitchen was deep cleaned every day. My children will not remember the crumbs on the carpet or the stains on the sofa. They will remember the time I invested in them. They will remember playing football in the garden together, and me teaching them to swim. They will remember singing nursery rhymes and reading bedtime stories.
R is at her happiest when she is spending time with daddy and mummy. Whether we are playing in the garden; reading a book or two; having a cuddle & watching Disney; on a day out at the farm; baking in the kitchen; or any number of simple activities like a teddy bear tea party on her bedroom floor; there is nothing more satisfying than the pleasure and joy our two year old can find in these moments. These moments are the ones which will create the memories that she will keep forever. So they are the things I will prioritise over the dirty dishes, the full washing baskets and the un-hoovered floor.
So if you - like me - sometimes feel like you are failing, and not doing a good enough job, stop for a minute. Look at what you are doing through the eyes of your children. If they are loved, cared for and happy then you are doing a good job. So give yourself a break, and pat yourself on the back. To your children, you will always be their Supermom.