Isn’t it funny how no matter how old, how grown up, how strong, successful or self-sufficient you get…
…you still want your Mummy when you get sick.
Even when you have responsibilities of our own and you can cope with every other aspect of your life with courage and precision, a sore throat and a temperature will have you reminiscing about childhood chicken soup, or the way that she’d stroke your hair or hold a cold cloth to your head to keep you cool.
Now, I don’t have what you’d call a “normal” family. Mine are a dysfunctional, unusual bunch of individuals who appear to be randomly connected by some freakishly cute accident of DNA. I’m not saying for a second my parents are bad people, definitely not. They’re successful and intelligent…just a bit damaged by their own situations…with which I wish them the very best of luck.
So despite various challenges growing up – including a foster home and a titchy spot of homelessness that could have ruined me; I know I grew into a pretty well balanced & decent human being…which has consequently led me to be surrounded by a whole crowd of amazingly special and brilliant friends. In my world, the saying “you can choose your friends but can’t choose your family” is a huge fib – the people that have got me through the trials and tribulations of then til now are the ones that I now classify as my true family, the rest simply biology. I have a lot of understanding of the problems my folks faced and carry no anger or bitterness towards them…but their influence on my life stopped over 15 years ago. I wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for friends (and my Nan!) acting as my backbone and my conscience through some pretty horrendous shit…so I’ll always be hugely thankful and proud to have built and maintained such beautiful relationships against the odds.
I don’t even think about calling my parents when I’m in hospital. They’ve never thought about visiting. That’s fine and although it sounds a little sad when you say it out loud, it actually works for us. So isn’t it peculiar that today, when I was wrapped up in my slanket on the sofa, at 30, with nothing but paracetamol, sandpaper for tonsils and a soaring temperature, I wanted Mummy to look after me?!
In reality…I don’t think it was my Mummy in particular. What I wanted was that mother figure you see on the TV, in slippers and an apron, bringing me lemsips and magazines and tucking me in all warm and cosy with a little kiss on the nose…
Makes me realise exactly the kind of Mummy I want to be to my kids when they come along. I shall be the loving, safe, baking apple pies and tying your shoelaces kind of Mum, who sits on the side of your bed when you’re poorly and makes all the bad bits go away.
It’s what every kid deserves.