I won’t be sorry to see the back end of 2012. Every mother has heard the well meaning comment ‘it all goes by so quickly’. I thought it myself the other day when I saw a twin mother-in-arms who I hadn’t seen for a while and marvelled at the miraculous growth of her two treasures. She rolled her eyes at me and I qualified: when it’s someone else’s babies it goes fast, when it’s your own it’s like grain by grain of sand through the hourglass. For my own experience, it does not go by fast at all. Growth is in millimetres, progress is incremental, life is dilatory.
I feel like celebrating while at the same time I feel like I have been flattened by a steamroller. Cots are gone. High chairs are gone. Pram is almost gone. They are feeding themselves. They sleep 11 uninterrupted hours per night. No bottles, no dummies, no bibs. We can walk from the car to the door of day care without an exploratory sprint though the suburb. They talk. They ask to use the toilet (although we don’t do much when we are there, at least we are interested). I looked at year old photos yesterday and was struck by the babyness of them 12 months ago. I have no babies now (HOORAY!). I am on the cusp of turning my little toddlers into little boys. I can look a year ahead and know that this will be the last Christmas where I have to gate doorways, monitor windows, check the oven for teddies before I turn it on, wipe yoghurt off the walls after breakfast and generate my own body weight in nappy landfill on a daily basis. Oh sweet underpants, surely you will soon be mine.
But what a cost. I’m getting to be a better mother, but it’s been no easy ride. My mental health, physical health, relationship health and budget health have taken big hits over the past few years. 2013 is our year of recovery. It’s our year to get the hell out of the house, kids and all, screw the hassle. It’s our year for weekends away with and without the kids. It’s our year to have conversations with each other, be just a family, not a family struggling to raise baby twins. 2013 is the year when we become a little more normal, one grain of sand at a time.
Check out ABC Radio 612 on Tuesday the 18th of December at 10am (QLD time), I’ll be chatting with some other Mums about Mum stuff.