Motherhood - advice to myself

Leave the dirty dishes in the sink. Ignore the sippy cup full of clumped up, half-drunk milk. Avoid the piles of dirty laundry screaming your name. Live in the mess of your life with clothes strewn about and the unmade bed. Don't tend to it. Don't tend to anything except maybe empty the dishwasher if it makes you feel alive and like you are moving slowly toward something. Light the candle and fill your diffuser with orange and lime.  Turn the kettle on and make tea. Choose your favourite mug - the white one with the turquoise ceramic bird on it. Don't worry about the tea pot that ended up at the bottom of the stairs, even if you loved it. Even if it brought you joy. Remember they are just things. Focus on the game you made up with your three year old pressing each others foreheads and making silly noises then falling into endless laughter. Focus on the moments. Fleeting and beautiful. Sometimes breathtakingly hard. Leave the worry you take on like it's your job. Lay it down, even for a moment. Breathe. Have the Epsom salt bath and dissolve your armour. Soften the parts of yourself you keep hard so you can keep it all together. Release the mama warrior within after a night with a fevered child. Let everything you've been carrying dissolve into the water. Become reborn in this water. New. Fresh. Alive again.

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The Drive-in

This is where the poem starts…

“We’re having an adventure” we told him as we drove to one of our favourite places on earth. “It’s a magical place where you watch a movie outside and swing against the sunset.” His eyes widened with the anticipation of what was coming next. The look of elation on his face as his dad pushed him on the creaky swing against the pink and purple sky. The smile that spread across his lips as he danced to the movie previews. The bites of Twix and the smell of popcorn. This is joy I thought to myself. This is all I need. The smell of spring air against the exhaust fumes and happy kids in their pajamas.

This is where the poem starts…

The excitement of being in nature, the smells of hot dogs and pretzels and the sound of slamming doors. The screeches of delight as kids followed their parents for an experience thought to be forgotten – two huge screens with cartoons from the fifties outside in the open air, surrounded by trees and farm fields. The bites of pizza and the sounds of diner music fill the speakers as my son snuggled up on my lap and asked for another blanket. This is pure joy I thought to myself. The salty pretzel bites my husband brings me after asking me what he missed and my son excitedly telling him which Smurf is which.

This is where the poem starts...

All I can think about is how safe and contained I feel with my two loves doing something we love so much and how my relationship, my marriage, started here. Grew from this. The trips to the drive-in on cold fall nights where we would bundle up in blankets and kiss under the stars. So deeply woven into the fabric of our relationship this magical place and now the chance to share it with our son. For him to understand the specialness of this place and fit so perfectly between us amongst the snacks and the blankets and the stars.