Poem for Spectacular Parents

I know that some

Shake their heads

Whisper to each other

Under their breath

“She’s just such a spectacle,

And those poor darling kids.”

But I feel respectable –

In my parenting bids

 

I know, I know, I know –

I’m the sweary mum,

They scary mum,

The dancing in my chairy mum

 

I cheer the loudest

Act the proudest

 

I’ll high five your kids too –

For anything amazing

I see them do.

 

You might have your cliques

Your wine

Your cheese

You have your yoga

Your Pilates

 

You might run the household

A project, a firm

You may have a desk job

And for other things you yearn

You may be a traveler

Or stay close to home

But we’re all on a journey

And we’re all here to learn

 

I have my work, my chaos, my friends

I have dark days that I fear will never end

 

I respect who you are

And the decisions you make

And appreciate when you graciously take

A moment to smile at the scary school gate

 

I’ve never been one who simply fits in

And now, as a parent, I’m living it again

The knot in my stomach

The lump in my throat

Wondering what you’re thinking

Hiding under my company branded coat

Thinking you judge me

For working

Or not

Thinking some look down on me

Not just a little

A lot

 

So if you, like me

Feel often out of your depth

If you can just see

That we’re all filling leaks

In the boats that we sail

Through these uncharted seas

Overwhelmed by the breadth

 

I have children

 

They came with no manual

No instruction

No plan

They grow every day

Cause disruption

Elation

Heartache

And they inadvertently can

 

Make me feel like I’ve failed them

 

But then with a look

Or a word

Or a sigh

They show me

I’m their world

And they know that I try

 

So.

 

Before you judge

Another mother, caregiver, grandparent or dad

At the school gate

Bake sale

Or fundraiser that’s been had

 

Know we are all juggling our own doubts

 

Struggles

Misgivings

Problems

Anxiety

Finances

Expectations

Worries

And fears

We’re all completely without guarantees

Or insurance

Of what’s in store

Or even how many years

We have

 

But this moment is ours

 

Today after school

As we line the street with our cars

 

We ask them

To tell us

About the day that they had

Was it good?

Was it great?

Was it bad?

 

And then later

After feeding

And fighting

And brushing of teeth

Our angels will snuggle

With all our hopes and fears

Tucked in with them beneath

Blankets

That lay heavy on them

With our hopes

For a future

That’s not too painful

Too scary

Too empty

But full

Of potential

 

So I’ll juggle my own needs

My own dreams

My own hopes

And the plans that I hatch

For a world of tomorrow

With a slightly loosened latch

For these people we’re helping make

 

I hope that if and when these kids grow

And become parents too

That they know

 

We all tried

 

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