A few not-so-motherly thoughts that has recently played on my mind. As painful and uncomfortable as it might be, I have decided to share these moments with you, my silent reader.
2. Should I let my kid play with toys at table while we eat? Diggers scooping out mashed potato and small pieces of veg? The same digger that may have been to the playground sand pit this morning? Yeah, why not. I don't know many 10 year olds who still play with toy cars while they eat. Come to think of it, …
3. … I am letting let a lot of things slip because ‘I don’t know many 8/10/16 year olds who …’
This is fast becoming my mantra. This comes under ‘Choose your battles’. Which leads to me to …
4. … Maybe I should abandon discipline. Certainly in the traditional, punitive, sense of the word. For what is discipline but behaviour out of place. Much like weeds: in another context, the behaviour might fine. Mostly. (Clearly this does not include harm or abuse!)
5. Now, how about instating a daily cocktail hour – at 5pm?! It is stylish, relaxing and welcome. It's only the daily part of it that is dodgy. As an old Pavlovian dog…
6. … OK, I admit it: The odd fag is bliss, because once you are a mum they are as deliciously naughty as those behind the school shed. Those your parents didn’t know about. Only now it is all about a break, a quiet moment in the garden, listening to the birds or aeroplanes. Wait a minute… did they know about them? And do they?
7. Now to the more embarrassing admission, not least in the context of adoption: Is there any way that it would be OK for me to take up smoking dope? (This comes from a woman whose husband think I’d better off with a Valium before going to a party.) I am thinking from the perspective of that young Olympic snowboarder who successfully argued against it being a performance enhancing drug (although of course it must be, in a relaxing mindful kind of way).
Needless to say, I have given in to some of this anarchy. And am weighing up the pros and cons the rest. The latter ones. The drugs. Give me pause and food for more thought.
I toy with the idea of roll ups, spiced and perfumed with funny tobacco, grown in a pot on the windowsill in a summerhouse near the ocean where I grew up. There is a soundtrack to it. Laughter and skinny dipping. Similarly I think of the alcohol sensation of the sweet liquid hitting my lips, spelling relaxation, a chill pill, which always makes me a better parent. A state that can be reached more easily and quickly with these light weight drugs, right? Perhaps mixed with escapism.
So many kids in our adoptive care come from background overshadowed by drugs and alcohol. And it was the prerogative of the parents to choose drugs over their children, whether or not it was a conscientious choice. I have a father who prefers to drink than to see his children. With all this in mind these slippery thoughts are no longer as playful as they started out. It is not funny. It’s just unbearably sad.