Having kids… why do we bother?

Motherhood is HARD man! Any Mother who swears she hasn’t at some point thought to herself; “I have made a catastrophic error and fucked up my own existence by procreating“, is a big old bullshitter.

  • Kids get up early. Like stupidly early. They have zero respect for hangovers, period pain or general life-related exhaustion.
  • Kids have no understanding of ‘alone time’. After your first kid becomes a toddler, you won’t get to take a shit on your own for many years… possibly decades.
  • Kids are loud. They will make you wish the ground would swallow you up on an almost daily basis, asking searching questions such as; “Mam; why does that lady have a beard?” Don’t try to ignore them or fob them off though. I warn you. They will only repeat their question with increasing volume. Just put your big girl pants on and answer them; “It’s hormones son. She’s got too much testosterone.
  • Kids are expensive. Stupidly pricey. They insist on growing and needing new school shoes/football boots/coats when you would very much prefer to be able to spend all your money in Topshop. On yourself.
  • Kids are naughty. Reeeally fucking naughty. They shave their own heads with Bic razors then deny it. They shout “Holy Fuck” at the top of their voice in the school yard and you suspect it is purely to make you look incompetent.

  • Kids are messy. They open cupboards and drawers and throw out the contents even though you repeatedly explain to them that this practice is damaging your mental health. They leave skiddies in their underpants and then leave those underpants on your bed.
  • Kids are selfish and impatient. They care not that you are on the phone to your boss; they want to go to the park and it absolutely must happen this instant. Otherwise you are risking a dirty protest on your lovely new cream carpet (rookie error choosing that colour).
  • Kids are unreasonable. They will lose their shit if you serve them scrambled eggs; even though you’ve regularly seen them eat scrambled eggs; hell you’ve cooked and served the scrambled eggs. Many many times. They will make you believe your mind is playing tricks on you… they have never liked scrambled eggs you FOOL.
  • Kids kill your social life. I sit here writing this abusive tirade on a Saturday night watching some God-awful singing programme with Geri Halliwell. I should be at a hen do tonight but no; here I am; babysitting my own kid. I don’t even get paid.
  • Kids are dirty. And I mean proper mingers. They have a steady stream of snots which you have to wipe. You have to clean their actual arses for the first two years of their lives at least. They eat their ear wax, bite their toe nails and take 50 pence payments from their brothers to put their thumb down their own willy and then sniff it. True fucking story.
  • Kids make you vulnerable and terrified and angsty. Sometimes you cannot recognise yourself or remember who you used to be. You love them so intensely that the threat of anything happening to them can send you into some dark places in your mind you didn’t even know existed.

So why oh why oh why I hear you cry does anybody opt in to this insanity!? First timers can be excused I think. They can’t be blamed… they’re just swayed by the cuteness of their nieces/nephews/friend’s babies. They think it looks like it will be fun. Rewarding even! They’re the equivalent of the first-time house buyer. They snap up the gorgeous cottage with kerb appeal in spades. They’re blind to the cracks in the ceiling; the dry rot in the floor boards and the fact that the whole place needs a rewire. All they see are the pink roses around the door. Fair enough.

But the repeat offenders!? The ones who know what they’re getting into and still choose to have a second kid… or, God forbid, a third… a FOURTH!?

Is it really just so that they have back-ups to look after them in their old age? You know; in case the first/only child moves to Vietnam or something? It’s got to be more than that surely? Something more immediate and tangible.

For me I can only say; my kids are the only addiction I’ve ever had. They are the crack for my soul (there’s a strong chance one day they’ll drive me to actual crack). The very things that send me demented are the things that have filled me with a deep sense of calm and belonging that I never imagined I’d have.

You hear people saying they’d die for their kids don’t you? I used to be so sceptical about that one. Really? Would you though!? What a ridiculous thing to say; I used to think. But now I’m her, that woman.

Yes siree. I’d take the bullet, jump in front of the speeding car, willingly be viciously attacked by one hundred duck sized horses or one horse sized duck (a choice which is put to me regularly by my weird middle child).

There’s not a love affair like it. I don’t know a woman who still gets a flip in her stomach when her fella walks through the door nine years into the relationship. But we still get it every time we pick our kid up from school don’t we? Let’s face it if any man was as much of a dick to us as our kids are; they’d be kicked to the kerb quicker than Beyoncé could say “To the left, to the left.”

Sure there are moments where I scream so loud at them I worry I’ve damaged my vocal chords irreparably. Moments when I find myself tearfully sneaking into the airing cupboard to eat a Creme egg in peace. But for every one of those moments there’s a moment where I want to inhale them, squeeze them, freeze them in time so they will always need me as much as they do now.

Motherhood: it’s a job unlike any other. The day-to-day perks are pretty shit on the whole, but long term the benefits package is bloody wonderful.

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