For the last few years, I’ve still somehow felt that I was pretending to be a grown-up. Sure, we got married, but we were still too young to have children. Yes, we had a dog, but that was for health reasons. OK, so we’ve got a
mortgage, but we can always sell the house and go off round the world whenever we choose. Thus the path of denial into parenthood.
Yet even at playgroups and Doctor’s surgeries, whenever I’ve had conversations with other mothers, I’ve just assumed that I’m spouting crap I read in a book rather than actual opinions I have based on personal experience. I assume that I still look like a 20-something newly-wed to others.
What a horrible wake-up call I have had of late, then: a series of small changes in lifestyle and opinion have become the metaphorical avalanche until I found myself actually considering the purchase of a Slanket last week. The Mothership doesn’t even own one for goodness sake: she lives in fear of someone giving her one, and yet I was almost salivating at the idea of a fleece blanket with sleeves.
Beyond the overwhelming appeal of fleece anything, there are other signs too:
- I recently converted from Radio 2 to Radio 4.
- I like getting new slippers to be an excellent Mother’s Day.
- I can’t eat chocolate after supper: it gives me indigestion.
- I can’t be bothered to sit calculating who ordered what on a night out: I’d just rather split the bill and be done with it.
- I love a night out that ends before the 10 o’clock news.
- I find myself driving for maximum fuel efficiency.
- And using alternative words beginning with F, like ‘fiddlesticks’, when I need a swear word.
- I quite happily saunter past the windows of New Look and Top Shop without a second glance, in favour of ‘reliable’ M&S.
- I love taking a nap.
- I look like my mother. If you doubt this, let me point out that when recently shown a cropped photograph of my face, both my children shouted ‘Granny’.