Mean mum MY CHILD COLUMNIST KYLIE KADEN ECHOES WHAT SO MANY OF US GO THROUGH WHEN OUR CHILDREN SPEAK THEIR MINDS.
orgive me, for my heart is mush. And it started with a game. A mother’s day game, at that: A group activity aimed to bond, strengthen the ties that bind, make cherished memories. It certainly was memorable. You see, a circle of seven year olds, flanked by their adoring mothers were asked to play a word game in which they add an adjective to the list to describe their own mum. So the game commenced with the first kid saying ‘beautiful’, followed by a murmur of aww in the group, joy flushing the mother’s cheeks. The next kid said the same before adding ‘pretty’ and so it went on with a plethora of lovely words – creative, awesome, loving, caring. That is, until it came to my child. A nervous pause, all eyes on my son waiting expectedly. He looked like he was about to pop and I had an anxious thought that he’d say ‘naggy’ after what seemed like a
particularly Groundhog week of pre-teenageangst that only a seven year old can deliver. But I was wrong. It was far worse. He recited the list thus far verbatim (evidencing the fact that he was indeed present and aware of the concept entirely) before adding ‘angry’. The room froze. You could hear a pin drop (or heart break). To slice the tension I made my hands into tiger claws and said ‘hah! That’s me! Angry mum!’ and growled (half-heartedly) like a wild beast. Everyone laughed, and I smiled like I wasn’t dying inside. Like I didn’t feeling like a complete failure as a parent on every level. The game continued, only to be reminded of my son’s addition to the word game every time a kid had a turn to repeat the list – everyone remembered angry, of course, and who it was meant for. I swallowed down the tears, laughed off the well-meaning snickers, and comments that ‘you don’t look at all like a
june 2015 | mychild
Published on May 24, 2015
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