What we really want for Mother’s Day during lockdown – a day off!

“Mother’s Day,” I said to Himself’s back.

“Hmm?” he replied, carefully laying the briquettes on the braai because it was Friday night, and even if we only had each other, we were going to be social dammit.

“It’s Mother’s Day coming up. Soon.”

Himself glanced at me and his beard, which has been growing since the start of lockdown and has achieved sentience, stroked itself thoughtfully.

“I know.”

“You need to get me something.”

“I know,” he sounded offended.

“And it can’t be a slab of chocolate.”

“Bu–”, The Beard clapped a hand over his mouth, just in time.

“Well, what do you want?” he mumbled around The Beard.

“I don’t know – a drink that doesn’t taste of pineapple?”

“The thing is we all know I’m not a Facebook mother; after all nobody thinks for one moment that I bought that yeast to bake bread. But it’s my first Mother’s Day as a mom, I just want to feel like I’m killing it for one day.”

“Not for another two levels at least.” He thought for a moment. “You know they’re only selling essential goods,”

“Oh, trust me, Mother’s Day gifts are essential to living!”

“I don’t know what to tell Himself to get me for Mother’s Day,” I told a friend over the phone, keeping half an eye on Slytherin Baby’s attempts to escape the house.

“How’s this for a crazy idea – why don’t you let him get you a gift.”

“But he’s an engineer.”

“Ah,” replied the friend knowingly.

“Yip,” I said, grabbing Slytherin Baby off the burglar bars. “If you want something thoughtful and practical to make your life easier, he’s your man. But if you want the perfect romantic gesture to put on Facebook, then maybe not.” Slytherin Baby wriggled free and made another dash for freedom.

“Here’s another crazy idea; why don’t you just forget the perfect Facebook gesture?” asked my annoyingly sensible friend.

“The thing is we all know I’m not a Facebook mother; after all nobody thinks for one moment that I bought that yeast to bake bread. But it’s my first Mother’s Day as a mom, I just want to feel like I’m killing it for one day.”

“Look –” the friend started, no doubt about to tell me something boring and wise.

“Oh damn,” I interrupted, “I got to go. Slytherin Baby is devouring my books.”

“Isn’t she a bit young to be reading?”

“Reading?” I asked, then dropped the phone to go rescue my book from my kid’s mouth.

Happy baby chewing on books from bookshelf
Slytherin Baby devouring the books. Image supplied.

“So, what do I want?” I asked Slytherin Baby later as she tested out her crawling skills by crashing headlong into walls and squeezing under couches.

“I would love to say that being your mom is reward enough,” I said as I pulled Slytherin Baby out from under the couch by her ankle. “I mean I will say that on Facebook, above a beautiful picture of the three of us.”

Slytherin Baby glared at me; her mouth firmly shut.

“If I can actually get a nice photo of us, that is.”

I stuck a finger in her mouth to fish out the dust bunny she was chewing on. “But let’s be honest,” I carried on, as Slytherin Baby screamed and tried to bite me, “Mommy needs a reward.”

“Prepare to be amazed,” Himself declared triumphantly. “I have decided to tell you what your present is now so you can look forward to it all week.”

“You got my list?” I asked anxiously as I tried to think of anything that I could maintain excitement over for a week. “I even alphabetised it to help with your engineering sensibilities.”

“I ignored it completely; you didn’t really want any of that stuff anyway.”

The Beard shrank back as I opened my mouth.

“Here,” he said quickly, shoving stuff into my hands.

“Oh. Wow. My oldest PJs. And look, a laptop. That I already own. You really, really shouldn’t have.”

“Well, I was thinking about it –”

“Clearly not very hard.”

Smiling mom holding baby touching her face
Amy with Slytherin Baby. Image supplied.

“And I know you wanted a perfect Facebook photo, but we’re not a Facebook family. What you really want is a day off. So Slytherin Baby and I are going to spend the day bonding and you can lie in bed all day napping and watching series and not doing anything.”

“But when people ask –” At that moment Slytherin Baby took her dummy out of her mouth and lovingly tried to shove it into mine.

“You’re right,” I told her as I wiped gob off my cheek, “Real-life perfect is way better than Facebook perfect.”

amy-lalouette-mommys-off-her-medsAmy Lalouette lives with Himself (her very patient husband) and Slytherin Baby. By day she’s an English teacher and by night she reads, writes, holds murder mystery parties and does belly dancing. Unfortunately, all this interferes with her lifelong ambition to have a spotless house and an empty laundry basket! She records her experiences (and confusion) of pregnancy and being a first-time parent on her personal blog “Mommy’s Off her Meds”.

Amy Lalouette lives with Himself (her very patient husband) and Slytherin Baby. By day she’s an English teacher and by night she reads, writes, holds murder mystery parties and does belly dancing. Unfortunately, all this interferes with her lifelong ambition to have a spotless house and an empty laundry basket! She records her experiences (and confusion) of pregnancy and being a first-time parent on her personal blog “Mommy’s Off her Meds”.