In case it’s not already abuntantly clear to you by now, Mina, I suck. I suck at writing birthday blogs on time. I suck at paying attention when you’re talking for the twelfth time about Barbie and the Diamond Castle. And sometimes, I suck at making sure you have clean uniforms to last beyond Wednesday and I most definitely suck at remembering to buy enough fruit for school.
But, somehow you survive anyway.
And that’s what is so awesome about being your Mum. You let me get away with being imperfect.
I think by now you have realised exactly how imperfect I can be. The business is at a point where it creates just enough stress to be disruptive, but not quite enough money to justify the stress, which means, well, I am kinda cranky and overworked. A lot. To the point where I frequently fantasise about going back to a full time job, where it was easier, I could Facebook for half my day and still get a paycheck, where the livelihood of the family didn’t always depend on me being productive. I fantasise about not having to bend over, show reams of paperwork, a business plan and a urine sample to get any level of respect from my bank, even though I earn more than most people with a full time job. I frequently fantasise about having that boring, traditional life, where people understand what you do, how you make money, and see it as legitimate. The stress of having a business at home is something that affects the whole family, and sometimes, it really sucks.
But the cost of going back to full time, of course, is that I would not be able to drop you off at school, or pick you up, or have impromptu playdates, or any of those little things that I enjoy being there for. Granted, I don’t exactly go to assemblies, or volunteer in the classroom, or, well, anything beyond paying for stuff, but at least now I have a choice. Being able to dictate my own timetable is the single greatest thing about what I am doing right now. There is very little that I have to do, right this second, that it cannot be done later. Unless, of course, I keep sayig “later” and then I end up barking at the both of you to shut up and then yell at your Dad saying how I get no respect and that…. well…. yeah. That. Which is usually my own fault.
And I am sure you know that being in business doesn’t always suck, when people pay on time, and I am motivated and things are going well, and you and Mr J are playing nicely, and all my work is finished before 5pm, and I am not completely exhausted from growing a new human in my belly all day. In fact, when I hear you talking about how you want to work with me when you grow up (well, a web designer AND a Rock Star), it makes me feel like, despite my glaring imperfections as a human being and as a mother, that deep down, you see me as a role model. And that is the best feeling in the world.
There is a saying that to see a child at 7 is to see the adult. I have been seeing glimpses of the kind of woman you will become: strong willed, kind hearted, practical, intelligent, with a strong sense of the macabre and ironic. I would say that you are a lot like me in many respects, except that you seem to be more meticulous and conscientious than I ever was. Maybe it’s the non-dysfunctional surroundings that help you to be like that – you have more structure than I did. But, you know your own mind, you know what you want, and you have a pretty good sense of the world around you too. And it’s the most awesome thing I have ever witnessed.
And as I see glimpses of the woman you will become, I have remind myself to not fuck it up. I am trying very hard not to repeat the mistakes of my parents, with a hope that when you are an adult, you can come to me for anything, you can tell me anything, and we will have the kind of relationship that I always wanted with my own mother. I think we are off to a good start, because right now, you look forward to a day on your own with me. You want to play guitar like me.
For your birthday you have started guitar lessons, and you have a new Daisy Rock guitar, thanks to Janet :). The teacher seems to think you’re doing really well, and you love it. Watching you play guitar with full distortion, and rocking out, is an inexplicable feeling. All I ever wanted growing up was music lessons, but I never got them. So I am partly living through you, and I hope that’s ok. I hope you stick to it, but most of all, I hope you enjoy it. I have always been committed to providing you with opportunities that I never had, and I hope that when you are all grown up and a part time rock star/web designer, that you’ll be a little bit appreciative that even though there are some things I am bad at, that my intentions have always been to nurture you into the woman that I see you becoming.
Happy Birthday, 3 weeks late. Sorry. :)