When I was young(er) and secure in the belief that I was the epitome of funk and style, I spent a lot of money and time on my hair. I spent a lot of money on unique clothes that I bought from the designers on Brunswick Street. I thought nothing of buying a pair of shoes one week and donating them the next. I put the ‘Rate’ in ‘Corporate Attire’ – well, at least that’s what I fondly believed.
Image: Alvimann, Morguefile
In my inner city life I rarely saw actual parents, but when I did I was often pretty concerned - no makeup, tired eyes, nothing in the way of accessories and really unfortunate hair-dos. And they would go out to the shops like this? What were they thinking? How could they do this to their kids? How could they do this to themselves? What if they saw someone they wanted to make out with later?
I swore that if I were ever lucky enough to have kids, they would NEVER suffer the indignity of me letting myself go.
I tried. I really, really did.
My first shock was labor. I had seen so many horrid pictures of smiling, pasty faces with flat hair and sweat drenched pillows that I already had told everyone not to take my photo until I was refreshed and delightful, smiling prettily at the tiny pink baby.
You think I’m going to say that I saw her and immediately got over it don’t you? Not at all!
Image: Anitapeppers, Morguefile
I did actually let people take the post birth photos, but no-one is allowed to see them, because I literally look like a shaved polar bear with a tiny baby blob.
For my next labor I made sure that I wouldn’t look horrible in photos by re-applying while in labor. Unfortunately I had to have an emergency C-section and my arms went numb. Again, an even paler shaved polar bear, only this time a drugged one.
I have come to terms with my disease; I am desperately holding on to the dream of my youth, that I could be the ‘hot mum’ with the enchantingly threaded eyebrows and still have everything done!
The mum who has a tiny wasp waist tied into a gingham apron, who bakes a cake to blush desirably when her husband chucks some flour from under her chin - I will be her!
I confess I am not really….. there.
Image: Phototogo2, Morguefile
Shallow? Perhaps. But at the end of the day, what’s so bad with trying to be ok with the person you see in the mirror? You may be a Mum, but you are also a woman – and you are totally allowed to pretend you are the ‘Hot Mum’ you always wanted to be – even if, at times, you are the only one who can see all that beauty underneath the baby slobber.