It has happened. At some point during the past 19 months, I drank the Kool Aid. I walked straight into that Friendship circle, held hands with the sisters and said goodbye to my old life. The Motherhood has claimed me.
When I first fell pregnant, I remember thinking I’d be such a cool mum. Not like all those other sad women who let themselves go and talk about their kids non-stop. I’d keep on top of current affairs and still go out drinking and still wear gorgeous things. I thought I’d be exactly the same person (yeah, ok, shut up. You thought exactly the same thing).
I was wrong.
I am weak. I’m a follower. I’m a proper mum and I don’t want to go back. Tell my family this is where I want to be….
It happened subconsciously. Despite my best intentions of being a normal person, I stepped into the dark side.
It started with a fleeting, instinctual pang of pity for some single friends.
It pains me to admit that. It’s like I’m trolling myself right now. But I need to be honest with you. I need to repent.
I was scrolling through my Facebook feed when I saw a photo of a friend in a sexy dress with her arms draped around a new man. Caption #love.
My very first thought was “thank God that’s not me.”
Not, “How sweet for her” or “She looks hot” or “Ah, that first, exciting flush of love!” Nope, just exhaustion at the thought of dating. I felt a bit guilty, but I forgave myself. No one really wants to be out playing the field, do they? (I honestly don’t know. I’m that far gone).
I kept scrolling and saw a photo of a bunch of girlfriends holding cocktails and laughing #goodtimes. I looked at one of my friends in the pic and thought, “I hope she finds someone soon so she can have a baby.”
I almost dropped my phone in horror. WHERE DID THAT COME FROM? WHO THE FUCK AM I?
I am Great Aunt Mary, the old biddy who doles out unwanted life advice to the young and carefree. I used to be young and carefree and I loved it. I never once thought “jeez I wish I was at home with a baby instead of out at this awesome party.” But now I smell of mould and suck on boiled lollies as I tutt at the outfits young gals are gallivanting around in.
Today I saw a gorgeous young woman (oh Jesus, I’m now calling girls “young women”. It’s probably time to hand in my drivers licence and sign up for Meals on Wheels) walking through a carpark in stilettos and a very tight pencil skirt. She looked hot. A couple of years ago I would’ve been filthy with jealousy.
Not today. Today I just stared and appreciated how pretty she was. I didn’t wish I was her. All I could think was “THANK CHRIST I’m not wearing heels.”
The thought of spending 45 minutes doing my hair and makeup makes me want to cry. Today it took me exactly 15 minutes to shower, dress, whack on some makeup and brush my hair. All while trying to keep a toddler out of the shower. I’m wearing a shirt that’s about 10 years old, a baggy pair of jeans and very, very flat shoes. And I’m wearing a $12 bra with no underwire. How could I EVER go back to wearing an underwire? Why didn’t anyone tell me how very fucking uncomfortable my boobs were for all those years?
I’ve realised I’m not turning heads anymore and that’s ok. I mean, my baggy old jeans are falling off my arse and my lack of underwire is doing no favours for my disappearing boobs (seriously, where did they go? They were popping buttons one month and the next….??? Hello??). I also have a small person with me most of the time and he doesn’t seem to care if I’ve washed my hair or scratched on some eyeliner.
Do you think that’s how the cult got me? The promise of comfortable clothes?
I think I just stopped fighting it. I made peace with my fate. It’s ok to change – and it’s ok to like the change.
The thing with cults is that the indoctrinated often think they’re happy. They believe regular people are worse off than them.
So even though I know I was perfectly happy being childless and carefree and totally fabulous – like I’m sure most of my single friends are – I also know that I’m happier now. I look ten times worse than I ever have. I don’t own anything nice anymore because my child has ruined everything. I work three different part time jobs for the “flexibility” so I can be at home with him (and work every spare waking minute of my life). I don’t get any thanks or recognition and I never see any of my awesome friends anymore because bedtime.
And yet, I truly think this is better. I’d happily give up a night out so I can be up at the crack of dawn, having wrestling matches with my lunatic child. A fabulous party or cuddles from Thud? No competition.
My advice to all my single, happy, responsibility-free friends – don’t talk to me. I know you’re happy but I don’t know if I’ll be able to stop my stupid mouth from saying the words “when are you going to settle down and have a baby?” And then we’ll all hate me.
I am THE WORST.
But I’m happy.
If you need me, I’ll be the one at the park, telling unwitting strangers how talented her child is, while giving disapproving looks to the teens dry-humping in the bushes because The Children might see and we must protect The Children.
Is it possible to escape the motherhood? Or have you joined too?
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