The Teaching Mum

A light-hearted look at parenting through the eyes of a very busy English Teacher.

Guest Post: The Wash Basket

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This post was not written by me.  I wish I had written it because I think it’s great.  I am not going to give too much away about it because I really want you to read it and appreciate it as I did when I read it at 6am this morning.  I was feeling a little sorry for myself as I was, as usual, still tired from multiple get ups in the night.  This post puts life into perspective, perfectly.

Written by a wonderful woman I feel privileged to have met upon a netball court a few years ago, this lady is a young, beautiful Mummy who loves her daughter fiercely. Currently pregnant with her second child, my friend is thinking about dipping her toe into writing and, in my opinion, I think she should just dive right in because she’s bloody brilliant. Funny, witty, heart-breaking and with a life-affirming lesson, here is: The Wash Basket.

I groaned this morning as I looked over and saw my wash basket overflowing;

Knowing full well it would have to stay put and just continue growing.

Daddy will be home from London today, a relief after three days of stress.

He’d double the already buckling load and I’d probably berate him for the mess.

That is where my poetry skills end. I was always a bit sh*t at waxing lyrical. God help me if I were to ever encounter being thrown into a ‘rap battle’ – I’m more Green Mile than 8 Mile.

Today, I woke up and I didn’t count my blessings. Forgive me. I woke to the 1st Lady peering over my face in a psychotic pox-covered pose to inform me she had ‘tiddled the bed’ but could I sort it out quickly as she ‘definitely needed more sleep’. First time in about five years, so i put it down to the medicine making her drowsy. No dramas sweet child, let me sort that for you.

As we were all settled back down for a few more Zzzs, the second child decided it was time for Body Pump Xtreme addition. No point me trying to sleep. Literally I may as well lay on a bed of nettles and have a three piece Mexican Mariachi Trio (complete with tasseled sombreros) stand by my bed every time my eyes closed for longer than a blink.

I got up and realised we had barely any food in because my useless hubby hadn’t gotten round to the food shop on the Sunday before he left for London with work on Monday. Inconsiderate a*sehole – he obviously didn’t care I’d have to charter that magical flying unicorn I use for transport after Steve (the bastard) failed me on my test (still bitter) and I still haven’t found my balls to re-take it. *Note to self* – dig out my girl testicles and dust them the f*ck off.

Some other annoying sh*t happened as I trudged through the morning: I was sick, hungry, my bedroom drawer snapped as I attempted to stuff just one more teeny weeny top inside. I spilled Calamine lotion on my bedroom carpet, my beloved big girl had developed more rashy spots, which immediately got my back up.  How dare this nasty announce itself to my Lady and potentially cause a lot of aggro for her and my second little bun? The work I was doing on the laptop was proving tougher than I was told (last minute hubby…a job he again didn’t get round to doing before he left.) I laughed my tits off when the power cable came out and it hadn’t saved.  Finally, I hauled my arse out for a two hour driving lesson and survived three people cutting me up (promise – genuinely not my fault.)

I was irritated. Stressed. Resentful that I was always the one dealing with the sh*tty end of the stick. I was annoyed at myself for my shitty time management and lack of being a household goddess this day/week. I was feeling terrible ‘mum guilt’ for things I physically cannot control. I was feeling like, without hubby, my wheels had fallen off.  I was tired, ballooning, emotional, hormonal – I needed my man back home. Even if he is sometimes useless and his attitude of “I’m gonna do it tomorrow”.  The truth is: my wheels don’t turn quite so good when he isn’t around. (Suffragettes recoil in horror!)

Then I saw the news.

And my fear, thank God, was extinguished before it had even ignited – our Daddy had left the Capital at lunchtime…and I’d spoken to him only minutes beforehand giving me a time he would be home. There’s no way he was caught up in the awful, heinous acts of terror that were unfolding as I watched glued to the ‘Breaking News’ bulletin. He was coming home.

But, for that wife and child who today lost their husband and daddy; the family who lost their daughter; the purely innocent tourist who won’t board the flight back home… they’re not and never will they again be “coming home”.

I struggle with catastrophe at the best of times.  I’m irrational and worry about worrying. My heart physically aches because out there now is a wife who will be glad she didn’t put a wash-load on this morning. A wife that rushes to her overflowing wash basket and finds the soft and worn shirt of her husband that’s still smelling of the love she has had so cruelly ripped from her life. She might be sat wearing it now. God knows I would be. A man went to work and kissed his wife goodbye and never made it back home.

I suddenly don’t give any f*cks that my drawers are broken, the cupboards aren’t full, the work didn’t get done, the pissy bedding is still in the washer, that my carpet is stained with a white chalky liquid or that I’ve had literally no rest whatsoever whilst our Daddy has been away.

I have my family back home. My reasons to live and love. Every minute of every hour.

Because life is terrifyingly short.

Count your blessings and never go a day without appreciating all the little things

My wash basket has doubled in size tonight… and I couldn’t be more f*cking grateful.

(Not a poet. Nor a writer. Just a mum and a missus.candles-1645551__340)

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