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Mothering …

March 18, 2012

I woke up early today – before Hope … that’s a first!

To be honest I’ve never thought much of ‘mother’s day’, I mean I’ve always cherished and loved my mother and bought her a fine array of flowers and random other presents but deep down it felt like a ‘Hallmark’ kind of day yet another commercial exercise. The last year – or was it the year before, Stephen, the former vicar at church gave a sermon about the whole thing and talked more about Mothering Sunday – the traditional name and explained that it’s not just about mothers (special though they are and needing to be celebrated and appreciated) but about mothering. Taking care of each other and nurturing friends, family, colleagues and so on… I’ve long since thought how I’d dread mother’s day if mine was no longer with me (just the most distressing horrible thought) but in the context of celebrating mothering I guess it makes it more broad than just being about one person even if that person is still at the heart of your thoughts. Sorry getting waffly and bit confused – it is early – before 6am and it’s unheard of for me to be up before Hope or mother!! Anyway – I guess what I’m trying to say is hurrah for not just mothers but mothering … I’ve certainly had alot of both over the last year.

My mother is incredible; truly my best friend. We had a turbulent time in my teens, as a baby she took me to the doctor because I had such bad temper tantrums and over the years I’ve said things to her in the heat of the moment or overtired and unhappy that I’ll always regret. She’s been a constant loving, presence and has given me a sense of fun, adventure and determination. I aspire to be like her. She never does nothing, never. If she is watching the television, which isn’t often the she doesn’t just sit and stare, she’s doing embroidery or sketching or mending something at the same time, during the day she’s always busy gardening, writing letters, painting, pottering around or talking to friends … or cooking. She’s not the best cook (that’s where I got it from too!!) but her cooking is so distinctive and so familiar. She drives, she travels (off soon to Hong Kong), she doesn’t make a fuss (she broke her wrist falling before the Stoneley Lecture last week an evening memorial talk in memory of my father … she sat through the lecture and socialized afterwards and the next day insisted we shouldn’t make a fuss so it was nearly 40 hours before we sat in A&E waiting and even then she described the pain as tolerable and said she’d just given her hand a ‘knock’ rather than elaborating on how the polished step had caused her to slip) and she has a marvellous sense of wonder and mischief.

I am so lucky.

All of this is now even more enhanced by the joy of being able to share Hope with her and sit and watch them together… sleeping, chatting, playing or just listen to Mummy talking to “Hopey Pope” and telling her she understands when Hope cries or describing the robin outside. She’s made her the most wonderful tapestry from linen and felt, representing her garden; all the leaves and birds and animals from her garden are represented and it’s been beautifully framed. Hope is a lucky little girl to have such an inspirational grandmother and I am so fortunate to be sandwiched between my remarkable mother and my perfect baby daughter.

Yup, that’s it … I’m a mother, a mummy, a mum!!! I never never never believed it would happen. I think as we flew out to Spain for our IVF treatment that I never really believed it could possibly work, I mean I’d got to 46 and still not managed to carry a pregnancy so even if the IVF worked then why would it be any different. Throughout the pregnancy I was so focussed on doing the ‘right thing’; not drinking, eating tuna, dying my hair etc I walked about 2 hours every day and drank gallons of water and goats milk and was pretty much vegetarian … and I prayed, I thought, I did all I could to remain positive and I had about 20 scans because of all the risk factors, the issues, the ups and downs … and resolutely my little Spaniard grew and thrived through it all .. but I never really believed it would happen. That I would have a baby at the end of it all … it seemed so different to simply ‘being pregnant’. Yet, on 5th January at 3.43pm a miracle happened, my little Spaniard … my trusty side kick vanished and gave way in the manner of the gentle caterpillar and little Hope, the most perfect little person emerged.

Now I am a mother! Just typing that makes me smile from ear to ear… and knowing I’m spending mother’s day with my mother and my daughter is the greatest gift, the most precious privilege anyone could have… that and the fact that Hope slept for nearly 8 hours last night all in a row!!

So … Happy Mothering Sunday from Hope and I, thinking about all our friends who have children, who don’t have children, who want to, who can’t, who have lost children and who have mothers they can be with, or mothers they can’t be with today. Enjoy the day … without sounding too Hallmark about the whole thing I now firmly believe in Mothering Sunday … it is a celebration of love.

Now, time for breakfast.

Three generations of Stoneley girls holding hands

Me and My Girl ...

Hope and her Granby and her Mummy

3 Comments leave one →
  1. Linda permalink
    March 18, 2012 9:57 am

    Happy Mothering Sunday 🙂 My daughter has been admitted to be induced this morning…three weeks early as her waters broke last week!!! Her eldest daughter is still in bed, having been out on the town last night, her youngest daughter is with me now, chattering away and tottering around with her pushchair, teddies and shopping. I shan’t rest until the latest edition to our family is safely here. I’m certain you, your mum and Hope will have a wonderful day. xx

  2. Joan Lawton and Neill Murray permalink
    March 18, 2012 3:17 pm

    Happy Mothering Day to you, Hope must have the Stonely determination too, even at her age she wanted to give you a special gift, so she did, 8 hours sleep. Just can not wait to read her blog, bet she says some amazing things about her Mother and her Grand Mother Lots of love and kisses from us to to you all xxxx

  3. March 20, 2012 8:11 pm

    What a lovely post, I remember feeling such amazing emotions on my first ever mothering Sunday with my baby daughter (now aged 6). Both my son and daughter are little IVF miracles too so I know how extra precious hope is – I remember some days thinking I would never be a mum xxx

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