The Ehmummy Manifesto

Having overcome my disappointment that ‘manifesto’ has less to do with hoards of Italian hunks frolicking semi-naked in a summer meadow wearing sequinned masks, drinking Lambrusco and dancing with wild abandon, and more to do with fiscal stimulation and the abolishment of SATS, I knuckled down to produce the kind of policy list that might hoover up more votes than Nick Clegg with balanced media exposure and a large Dyson.  Whether I have succeeded or not is a moot point, as thankfully Josie has no voting system on this week’s Sleep is for the Weak Writing Workshop #23.

So here follows the Ehmummy Party Manifesto:

1.  Free copies of Twilight to all mums. Oh Robert, we know it’s wrong and many of us are old enough to be your mother, but we just would

2.  Soft focus to be applied to all UK CCTV cameras.  If it’s good enough for Andy MacDowell, well…we’re bloody worth it too.  If sweaty security guards across the country are to be granted free reign to ogle us as we go about our mundane daily business, well let’s make darn sure we’re looking our best.

3.  The creation of a National Surrogate Granny Service.  No longer will those of us rearing our children outside a forty-mile radius of our relations – while friends’ mothers and mother-in-laws are seemingly available at the drop of a hat to babysit their grandchildren regularly while they cement their already healthy relationships – be left in a barren no-mans-land of nights in with the kids.  Instead we will wallow in companionship with our better halves on exciting soirées and rekindle the sexual frisson of the first blush months when we gazed starry-eyed at each other across tables in low-lit Italian bistros.  Alternatively, we may stare mindlessly at the stranger facing us and wonder who the hell they are and whether the kids back home have gone feral and are beating each other – and poor old Granny Surrogate – with the Wii.  Either way it’s still a night out away from the ankle-biters.

4.  The abolishment of all things Eighties and banishment to the Tower of London for teenage boys sporting flattened, gelled fringes and spikes at the same time. I mean, who really wants to relive such a mindlessly tasteless decade?

5.  The establishment of nation-wide Merlot Theme Parks.  Wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee…splash!

No rosette required; a large glass of Rosé will do…


Feelers out, kids; you’re on your own…

Thanks to Josie at Sleep is for the Weak for another thought-provoking workshop.

3. What do you secretly dream of your children doing?

Don’t run with scissors, take much care
Be smart and always comb your hair

Stay safe and stable,
Firm and able,
Joints off table,
Take your time

Always polish up your shoes
Be orderly when joining queues

Respect the rule,
No playing fool,
Be good in school,
Toe the line

But sing like angels, run like wolves
Be joyous, dippy, crazy fools

Be fun and scatty,
cool and natty,
wild and batty,
racy, nuts

Snatch this life and scoff it down
Roll in red paint, daub the town

Have wild romances,
Drinks and dances,
Flights of fancies,
Booms and busts

I hope for you contentment, joy;
Perhaps a little girl, or boy?
A homely or a travelling life?
A wealthy husband? Loving wife?
These wishes are your mother’s kind,
Not aspirations of your mind.
So children, pave your own bright way…
…Just relish every glorious day.

A life in two paragraphs

For Writing Workshop ‘Can you see me’ from Josie at Sleep is for the weak:

I was the one who came second. I was the one who screamed all night and was put on the doorstep; who – discovered drenched by the paddling pool – claimed my absent brother pushed me; who didn’t spill the yoghurt on the fireplace but still got a smack for it, who didn’t nick the Spangle from mum’s bedside table; who did burn plastic bags nailed to a shelf in the garage, who did pee in the bedroom sink. I was the one who “wasn’t a proper girl” but who knitted, crochet’ed, embroidered, sewed and macrame’ed my way through primary school; whose clever friend could tie her own tie but couldn’t skip properly; who stole peas through the neighbours fence; who danced oblivious to everything but Mozart yet lasted only ballet lesson.  I was the one who tried on friends and found them lacking. I was the one who longed to belong but was always too shy, too brash, too frumpy, too ugly, too keen. I was the one with the metal mickey.  I was the one they tried to bully (but a temper makes a fine defence). I was the one who skiied off alone into the dank mist, who ran and ran to get away from them, who swam so hard they’d be left in my wake.  I was the one who played too rough, laughed too loud, drank too much, smoked too many, loved too easily, stayed too late. I was the one who lost my way, my purpose, my goals, myself.
I am the one who picked you, with your crazy hair and chequered past.  We were the ones who partied hard, who travelled wide, who settled down.  I am the one whom you gave a son whose every move I watch with swelling pride.  We are the ones who groped our way blindly.  I am the one that held you close when your father died, that clutched your hand on a hospital bed, that scolded you for worrying while cold fear balled in my stomach; yet I am the one who pushes you away from my troubles. I am the one who looks through your eyes to see me for the fraud I am; who reads your mind and finds I am wanting. I am the one whom you gave a daughter. I am the one who strokes her brow, her palm, her fingers and who cries with joy. I am the carer, the cook, the teacher, the artist, the swimming instructor, the cleaner, the decorator, the writer, the gardener, the dreamer, the traveller, the singer, the musician, the disciplinarian, the poet, the sportsman and the raging harpie.  I am your wife. I am your mother. I am your pal. I am exhausted but I love you all.  And I am excited about tomorrow.