The Gallery: Motherhood

This week’s prompt from Tara at Sticky Fingers was Motherhood.

It’s a funny one for me because being a mother is the most important thing in my life, but I don’t really think of myself as a mother. I don’t feel like a mother – I don’t feel grown-up enough. Me and David still sometimes talk about how mad it is that we’re allowed to bring up two little people. Us!

Anyway. The first photograph that popped into my mind was this one of me and Joe:

Harry’s birth was so incredibly traumatic and I don’t really have any good memories of that day at all (I spent most of the day unconscious with an infection while David gazed at Harry sleeping in his Perspex cot). Joe’s birth was completely different. It was by caesarean for a start, but then it was all just lovely. When I think about it, I think of me lying there, gazing at Joe’s cross, scrunched, little face. I’ll never forget it, but I’m so glad I’ve got a photograph of it.

Obviously I can’t have Joe without Harry and this picture reminds me of our favourite holiday. I was pregnant with Joe and we went to Norfolk for a week and had a proper, old-fashioned, family holiday. I can’t look at this photo without smiling. It makes me want to take off for the seaside immediately.

Finally, I wanted to include this photo of me and my sister with our mum:

I’d guess Leanne’s about 18 months here, which makes me about 3, which makes Mum 36, i.e. younger than I am now. That seems really odd to me. I was the same age when I had Harry as Mum was when she had me, but Mum always seemed like a grown-up to me, whereas, like I said above, I feel like a big kid. I wonder if Harry’s going to see me as a grown-up. I sincerely doubt it.

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23 thoughts on “The Gallery: Motherhood

  1. What beautiful photos, Keris.

    I hear you on the grown-up thing. I’m 36 and I don’t have kids, but I often wonder if I would feel more grown-up if I did! Reading your post, now I think I probably wouldn’t! 🙂

    1. Thanks, Talli. I heard David Mitchell talking about this recently. They were talking about the increase in older parents and he said when he was in his 20s he thought he was too irresponsible to have kids. Then he got to his 30s and though, “No, I’m still too much of an idiot to have kids.” He thinks it’s only when you get to your 40s, you think, “Ah! I’m ALWAYS going to be an irresponsible idiot!”

  2. Gorgeous – the one of you and Joe is just beautiful, and Harry makes me want ice cream.
    And I’m so with you on the grown-up thing. A freind of mine pointed out that she was the same age as David Cameron – and shrieked “Where did all the grown ups go? They’re letting US run the country?”

    1. Ha, exactly! I was thinking recently about something bad happening to Harry – you know how your mind runs away with these things – and I had this kind of partially-formed thought of, “Well I wouldn’t be expected to deal with THAT!” It was something they’d need to bring the Real Adults in for. Ridiculous.

  3. Such beautiful photos. I don’t feel grown up either. I feel like someone’s going to tap me on the shoulder one day and bust me at playing dress-ups.

    I remember my mum cuddling baby Patrick and watching Craig and I arseing about in the kitchen. She said to Patrick, “I think you’re going to grow up before your parents do…” 🙂

    1. Thank you.

      You’ve got such a lovely relationship with your boys, though. It’s better not to be a grown-up sometimes.

  4. I love this post. You said it exactly like it is.Especially the last paragraph about how your mum always seemed like a grown up to you , yet you don’t feel grown up enough to be a mum – I totally get that, I think that most women with children, ‘mums’,that I know (well, the honest ones)would say the same too. Makes me realise how my own mum probably felt too – I try to imagine her feeling – well, just ‘herself’ , ageless , like we feel I guess, but I can’t , because to me she is always the all powerful, larger than life,grown up ‘MUM’ and I am always, when I think of her,(and ergo ,of my childish self)a child. That is the strangest paradox for me.It makes me look at the whole ageing process in a different light,when I see an elder, I think :there goes a young person in a deteriorating body . A fantastic post !

    1. Thank you. That’s what I wonder – if my mum felt the same.

      “It makes me look at the whole ageing process in a different light,when I see an elder, I think :there goes a young person in a deteriorating body .” <- I love this! Thank you!

  5. I have 3 children and still dont feel like a grown-up. I just think priorities change when you have kids not the person you are. My girls are my world and I always put them before myself, I think that is what motherhood is about. As they are getting older they seem to appreciate my sarcastic sense of humour, love of YA books and rock music a lot more LOL.
    Lovely photos Keris 😀
    Weird coincidence with the Frank Skinner thing and your post on the same day 😀

    1. Thank you. Yes, I was writing this as I was listening to Desert Island Discs. Coinky-dinky, as my mum used to say 🙂

  6. Although I’ve seen the photos before, it has really struck me today how you, your Mum and Leanne just look SO alike. I’d not noticed Leanne looking so like your Mum before. I don’t think many of us are really ready for parenthood – I was on my own in a foreign land so was anxious most (all) of the time. I mean, a real-life living person’s survival depended on me/us! Scary.

    1. Leanne is looking more like Mum as she gets older. Also I think I look just like Harry in that picture. We’ve only got one face in our family.

      And, yes, that’s the funny thing about being a parent. I worried so much about keeping the fish alive and yet here I am with to HUMAN BEINGS! Yikes.

  7. What a gorgeous post, and what lovely photographs. Ooooh that baby pic is so gorgeous. I cherish thoughts of those first few hours with my 3 when they were newborns.

    I am completely with you in that I often feel like I am playing at being a grown up. I have a house, garden, family to look after but it feels really strange when I think of the reality of it.

  8. Our parents generation did seem so much more grown up than we feel. I wonder if they were born that way or felt the same about their parent’s generation?

  9. Oh, I’m going to get all weepy now. I love how Harry has your big smile; I hope it doesn’t sound too bonkers to say that they’re both very honest, generous smiles. They properly light up, as all good smiles should.

    There endeth the discourse on smiles.

    Adorable.

  10. Keris,
    these are such beautiful photos! Thank you so much for sharing. I can relate quite well to what you said. I have always perceived my mother as a grown up when I was a kid but I don´t see myself as mature as she seemed to me back then. I´m still such a kid in so many ways while hoping to be a good mother as well! I´m glad I´m not alone! 😉

  11. Do you think that Harry kind of looks like Leanne in this picture?

    As for how Harry see’s you, I imagine it is as someone who he loves very, very much.

    1. Oh, Harry totally looks like Leanne there — same smile!

      I can’t believe my parents had me when they were 28. And my Nan had my dad (and his twin brother) when she was just 16! I’m almost double that now, and I’d be a gibbering wreck.

  12. You’re so lucky to have that photo of you & Joe, we both know the photos of me with my babies weren’t so flattering!

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