Sometimes you have to appreciate the little things in life.
Last week, the little girl who made me a mum – Lady M – turned 6. It’s hard to believe that six short years ago, as I was growing a little person, I had absolutely no idea what life would be like as a parent. Now that I have a little girl who needs two hands to show us her age, I have had so many incredible experiences.
Lady M is a truly sweet person. She cares very deeply about others, has a silly sense of humour, is a quick learner, and is beautiful inside and out. She’s been through a lot of change this fall as she adjusted to a new school, new friends, 100% French education and a new daycare too. That’s a lot to throw at a not-quite-six-year-old, and I must say, she’s adjusted beautifully. Sure, we’re still struggling with the bedtime fears (see Scooby Doo post) but that’s just a bump in the road.
As for celebrating the little things: on her actual birthday I was able to leave the office early and pick her up from school. Now, to many of you this may seem like a mundane, every day activity. For me, this was beyond exciting. I never get to pick her up from school (not until after work, when she’s been in the after-school program for almost 2 hours), so this was a rare treat for me – and for her. We talked about it for more than a week, as we counted down the days to her birthday, and the day mummy would be there after school.
Up until a year ago, Lady M and Lady A used to go to a different daycare that was down a country road. I recall, as I was phasing the girls into that daycare (and was finishing up maternity leave) I would drive down the country road at the same time as the local school bus each day. I vividly remember seeing all of the mums (and the odd dad) standing at the end of their country driveways, waiting to greet their bouncing children as they got off the bus. Working mum guilt would kick in strongly each day – wishing that I could be the mum at the end of the driveway, knowing that it’s just not the way things are going to happen for us at this point in time. Don’t get me wrong – I enjoy my work, and can’t really see myself staying home, but there are some things that I sure would love to be able to do.
So having the opportunity to be ‘that mum’ for a day, and join the masses of sweatpant-wearing mums who were there getting their kiddos was a great moment. I didn't know anyone there, and couldn’t join in on their parent-to-parent conversations that had clearly been going for 2 months now, but I was elated when Lady M’s happy little face, and bouncing self came bounding out of the school door and she jumped up into my arms. Clearly she was just as excited for the change in routine as I was, and that tree-frog hug she gave me was just perfect.
It was nice to get to do that mum thing.
From there we got to go home, make icing and decorate her birthday cake in preparation for her birthday dinner that night. It’s also rare that we get to spend time together – just the two of us – so that was an added bonus on her special day.