Thoroughly Modern Mammy Maria Rushe decribes how mothers are the unknown producers of the greatest show of all at Christmas.


It’s finally here.
The big one.
What we’ve been working towards.
The performance.
The show.

Christmas is like putting together a musical: you decide on the show, get the cast together, go through your routines, rehearse, use the essential props, take a deep breath and GO! Once Christmas Eve hits, it’s curtain up and the show will go on, whether you’re ready or not. It might not be perfect, or guess what? It might be the best one yet.?

Maybe someone misses their cue or their line. Maybe a prop got misplaced. Maybe a cast member is missing… Maybe a scene change didn’t go smoothly. Maybe there’s a technical hitch, but the Show WILL go on. Expectations are high and the production must be timed perfectly. Even if there are hiccups, or someone makes a mistake, mostly we leave the theatre of Christmas with a warm, fuzzy feeling. We’re glad that it’s over, because while entertaining, sometimes the show is a long sit. Sometimes, it’s not quite what we expect. Sometimes, we’re sad or even disappointed by it. Maybe we expected more? Maybe we expected better?
Maybe, we’re just knackered! ?

Because we Mammies are the show. We are the production; the Producer, the director, the choreographer, the MD, the Prop manager, set designer…and usually, the absolute star of the show, but in reality, she’s the support act. Because while we bust ourselves making our Christmas shows as perfect as we can make them for OUR families, in OUR circumstances, to keep alive the traditions that WE feel are important, the true stars are our children and grandchildren. And their starring roles cannot be rehearsed. Kids are those annoying stars who turn up on opening night, oblivious to the preceding 3 months of rehearsal and preparation, who walk on-stage, unrehearsed, under no obligation to anyone…and they steal the show.

Mammy meanwhile? She stands in the wings, making sure everything is as wonderful as it can be for her cast, making the most of the budget she has and the theatre she’s working in. And she smiles, because only a Mammy can happily run the show and sit back to let everyone else enjoy it and shine. And of course sometimes, Mammy is smug because her show went without a hitch, all because of her and her helpers and all their rehearsals and preparations.

So regardless of how your own particular Christmas musical is going right now, Mamma Bear, you did great. Your show is perfect. It’s yours. And nothing else matters. Very soon, it will be over for another year, and all we’ll have left are the memories we’ve helped to make.

Happy Christmas Ladies.
Hope Santa was good to everyone. ???