September used to represent the end of summer, the end of salty skin against the sand, of sunset cocktails by the beach and welcome the nostalgic feeling that we would have to wait another whole year for the next summer. Since becoming a Notting Hill Yummy Mummy, I cross each day off the calendar during the summer waiting for September. September is now my favourite month. Holidays, as all parents of small children know, really aren’t holidays anymore. Summer is an endless two month period of trying to entertain your children any way possible, of breaking sibling fights, managing tantrums from beach/pool/sun exhaustion and trying to figure out how to have five minutes to yourself. There is no end to my children’s demands in the summer and the amount of energy these little bodies produce is really a physiologically mystery (another reason why we should have all stuck to having kids in our 20s! My older, closer-to-40-than-30 body just cannot keep up.) I now spend my summers dreaming of the ‘Back to School’ days when my life will return to normality.
You see, there is ‘my’ self and there is my ‘mummy’ self, and unfortunately my ‘mummy self’ does not bring the best out of me. My ‘mummy self’ is a neurotic, overprotective, anxious, helicopter parent that has led to my children never leaving me out of their 2 meter radius. In the summer when I am mostly ‘mummy’ and less ‘me,’ I am constantly reprimanding my children, since they stop listening to me and my threats of no ice-cream/no TV/no IPad, which they know I will never go through with since it is my only method of keeping sanity in this household. The rest of the time, I snap at my husband for not realising how much work being at home with the kids all day really is, which does not make me a particularly endearing mother or wife. (I want him to try staying at home with two small children for just one week. I rub my hands gleefully at the prospect of this idea). In any case, this equates to a very long and tiring summer, since this year I forgot to organise any kind of organised, social activity for them. Note to self: Must better organise next year’s summer holiday. See what I mean?!! I need ‘myself’ back! I look forward to September when my children return to their beautifully, constructed routine of full day schooling and activities and when I can go back to being ‘my’ normal ‘self’. My children are happily taken over by professionals, behave better, actually listen to me and I return to the cool, trendy, relaxed Notting Hill writer I pretend to be, which makes everyone much happier. Welcome September! xx NHYM