Tuesday 6 February 2018

The Sounds of Motherhood

Motherhood sounds like 'Mama, mama, mama' on repeat all day long. Tiny hands clawing at my skirt, desperate to pull themselves up into my arms. It sounds like 'Mama! Mama,' when I arrive home, feet toddling over to me, arms outstretched ready for a cuddle. 

Motherhood sounds like belly laughs, uncontrollable giggling coming from across the room. Two sisters, thick as thieves, lost in fun together. The biggest doing something to make the littlest laugh, and the littlest trying to copy to make everybody else laugh. 

Motherhood sounds like a washing machine and a tumble dryer, always on. The background noise to my life. Whirring away washing load after loads. White polo shirts, colourful dresses and black school cardigans in a never-ending cycle of needing to be washed. 

Motherhood sounds like inconsolable crying that I don't know how to soothe. Gasping for breath between wails, red-faced and burning up. It sounds like pain and frustration and hurt, all let out in one giant sob while I try desperately to help. 

Motherhood sounds like a boiling kettle, the hiss of the gas hob, the hum of the oven over the moans of hungry children. It sounds like a knife hitting a chopping board, chopping veg, desperately trying to get dinner cooked fast during the witching hour when children doing little else other than cry and moan and whinge. 

Motherhood sounds like cries in the dark, sleepy hands reaching across the bed for a toddler who needs a cuddle. It sounds like cries from down the hall as her big sister stirs in her sleep, yelling out at somebody in a dream. It sounds like middle of the night toilet trips and the painful exhaustion of never quite getting enough sleep. 

Motherhood sounds like 'eeeeb-a-deeee' yelled loudly the whole way to school, desperate for her big sister to hear her. Walking proudly in her winter boots, hand clasped in mine, stomping her way to the daily reunion with her favourite person in the world. It sounds like a little voice, almost bubble-like, pointing out every dog and cat along the way. 

Motherhood sounds like bickering, two little girls vying for attention and resources. The unavoidable competition between siblings. The yell from the little one as she tries to keep me for herself and the frustration of the big one as she is pushed away. Motherhood sounds like my two favourite people competing for my love, both trying to secure it all for themselves. 

Motherhood sounds like early mornings, an electronic alarm clock replaced by the buzz of wide-awake children. It sounds like the big one begging for everyone to get up while the little one squeals in excitement, desperate to wake her daddy. 

Motherhood sounds like the rushed and excited stream of consciousness from my biggest after-school. My daily update on her on-going game of chase with the boys from the year below. Who caught who, the trickery involved and the plans to win tomorrow. 

Motherhood sounds like being needed, really truly needed. 

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