Friday, 25 February 2011

Five things about me

My darling Doodlebugs,

I write this as you sit in various states of undress on the sofa. It's a Friday, the beginning of our weekend, and after stuffing our faces with Pink Pancakes we're vegging out in front of CBeebies and contemplating the day ahead. Threeva is exhausted after three full days at nursery, playdates and the general busy-ness of being a nearly-three-year-old. Dimples is delighted unpacking the neatly folded laundry onto the floor, not realising that, in order to use both hands, she is not holding onto anything and therefore fully free-standing. It's a moment of quiet, a moment of happiness and serenity that won't last long. Threeva will end up hurting Dimples for unintentionally invading her space and I'll end up shouting at you both over the noise of your crying.

I wonder now what your memories will be of me when you are older? Will you remember the pancakes and pyjama-ed sofa-sitting, or will you remember your mother as a screaming harridan? I frequently worry that I won't be around as you grow up, something that's at the forefront of my mind after hearing recently of a mother who died leaving a young son. Will you have any memories at all of me? Will you pester Daddy and Granny M for details about their life with me? Will you know who I was and how much I loved you?

The Friday Club this week are writing Five Things that they want their children to know about them. Here are mine:

1. I love, love, love baking. I'll make cakes or biscuits or chocolates for any occasion. I once had a dream of being a restauranteur after spending time in France and cooking in a Michelin-starred restaurant. But baking is what I love best, so the dream has altered: I'd love to own a tea-shop, or a very child-friendly cafe. I'd be very happy making mini-cakes all day long.

2. I love pearls, Hello! magazine and Chanel No. 5. The more that time goes on, the more I realise that I am, and have always been, middle-aged. Which is a bonus, really, because when you become a tweenager, you'll undoubtedly consider Daddy and I to be seriously uncool. I might as well start as I mean to go on.

3. I have a very good memory for numbers: I can remember my father's briefcase combination from the 1980's, Daddy's credit card number (a very useful thing to know) and telephone numbers of a variety of people. I'm not as good as Daddy at mental arithmetic though. I can also remember a lot of song lyrics, and events from my childhood, including what I was wearing at the time.

4. I come from a family who have very vivid dreams and often talk (or so Daddy has said). I'm confident that you both have a similar thing, since you have both done peculiar things in your sleep, such as tell me things, or smile, or cry, or stand up. I do need a lot of sleep because of it.

5. Despite having a very good memory, I regularly fail to find the word for basic objects. As Daddy will tell you, it's helpful to be good at DG-speak, since I often describe the things I am thinking of. Thus a kettle will be: It's shiny and hot with water in it, and Polly uses it. The descriptions tend to be more wordy and obscure the more tired I become.

Of course this is all random stuff about me. So, as an added extra, I should like to point out that I will always love you. Nothing you say or do will ever change that. I might not like you very much from time to time: you really do get under my skin, push all my buttons, test every fibre of my being on a fairly regular basis. And yet I still love you, with every one of those same fibres. There's a very real chance that you won't like me very much, frequently I imagine, as you grow older. I assume that the teenage years will be particularly trying for us all. I hated being a teenager and will have to fight every instinct I'll have and let you make your own mistakes. I doubt I'll say yes to all of your requests, I doubt I'll let you out wearing some of your clothes and I guarantee I won't approve of all your actions. But I hope that you can come to me with anything, tell me anything and know that I will always listen, without judgement, and try very hard to understand. Lastly, I want you to know how very proud I am of you, whatever you achieve, whoever you become, wherever you are: you have no need to prove yourself to me or achieve anything for my sake. You just have to keep being my daughters, and know that I will always be your Mamma.

With all my love,

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