Maria Rushe begins an A-Z, no holds barred, uncensored and hilarious analysis of life as a Donegal mammy.

A – Z of Mammyhood


A – AIM.  Think of the Aims and ideals you have for the perfect rearing of your little cherub, and then lower them. considerably.

B  –  BABIES –  Babies are class.  Little chubby, fuzzy cherubs of talcy snuggles. They’re wee love bombs. And the fact that you can suddenly love this little person to infinity having only just set eyes on them, is phenomenal. And then when they arrive, we wonder if they’ll ever do anything other than sleep, eat and poo!

C – C-SECTION – Not the easy way out that so many like to paint it.  Sections are adding fullblown surgery to the birth of your baby. You can read what I really think about that here.

D – DADDIES – Daddies are great. Now granted, many will disagree with me on this. And each circumstance is different. But many Daddies are just as excited and terrified and hands on as Mammies. They don’t carry the baby.  They don’t give birth. THEY DON’T UNDERSTAAAAAND!  But Mammy, guess what? THAT’S NOT THEIR FAULT. If they are with you and willing to do what they should be doing, let them.  And don’t let people refer to them as “babysitting”. Do YOU babysit your kids? No? Well why would Dad? They’re his kids too.

E – EVERYONE – Everyone has an opinion. Everyone has advice for you.  Everyone has their way of doing things.   But remember, opinions are not facts.  Go with your gut. Do what’s right for YOU and your family.  And forget about EVERYONE else.

F – FEEDING – Ooooooh… Is she going to go there? Eh yes.  I am. I have already. I’m clear about this.  You feed YOUR baby HOWEVER THE HELL YOU WANT!  Breastfeeding is of course wonderful and natural, but it isn’t for everyone. And if, for whatever reason, you can’t (or don’t want to) breastfeed, that IS YOUR BUSINESS and no one else’s. As long as Baby is getting fed, that is all that really matters.

G – GRANDPARENTS – Grandparents are WICKED.  If your kids are lucky enough to be able to spend time with Grandparents, let them.  But let me give you the heads up.  Your children’s behaviour with you, and your children’s behaviour with Granny or Granda are COMPLETELY DIFFERENT!  Usually, they turn into starved, unloved, neglected and abused little feckers the second a Grandparent is within sniffing distance. But that’s not Granny’s fault.  It’s nature. It’s just not written in the baby books, but trust me. It’s like a baby law or something…

H – HOUSEWORK – Yeah.  Who has time for that craic? Your house will forever more amen be clattered with crap. Yes, we should try to keep it clean.  Finding a routine that works for you is great. (Mine is my Thursday night blitz. Works for me!) But no, your house will never again be the picture perfect show home that it might once have been. Think of the dirt and smudges and handprints as your “layer of love”.  I’m not saying to let your home fall apart, but bring your standards down a bit and life will become easier.  No one cares if your skirting boards haven’t been dusted since 2014.

I – IGNORED – You shall be ignored. You shall feel ignored.  Children love to ignore their parents. Again, this usually lasts until they’re about 25 when they realise that ACTUALLY, you were right about most things.

J – JUMBO KNICKERS – Oh the JOY of the jumbo knickers. Those of you who are packing hospital bags and reading the shitlists of what you NEED to bring, should know that where it says “Disposable underwear”, it SHOULD say “BUY THE BIGGEST BLACKEST CHEAPEST KNICKERS YOU CAN FIND AND DUMP THEM AS YOU CHANGE THEM”. Your ladybits have been through enough Mammy. Paper knickers are pushing it.

K – KICKS – Aaaaaaah the kicks. What all pregnant Mammies long for and enjoy. The cause of excitement and smiles. The cause of heartburn and rib pain! But ultimately, how our little bean communicates with us in our bellies. Don’t worry however, these kicks don’t end after pregnancy. NOOOO!  They continue well into their childhood.  Don’t believe me? Try changing the nappy of a wobbler who is throwing a wobbler or spend a night with a 3 year old in your bed.

L – LIQUID POO – Self explanatory really. My technical term for this is POONAMI. As the name suggests, this poo comes in a tidal wave which destroys everything in its reach. Nothing can be saved. Vests, socks, clothes…  Don’t even try to salvage them. Sometimes, it takes many grown ups to deal with the aftermath of a poonami. Enjoy!

M – MAM-ME TIME – The most underestimated necessity of the Mammy.  Mam-me time is vital in a world where let’s face it, we can’t pee on our own for approximately 6 years. It can be a simple chat on the phone when the kids are in bed.  Go for a walk. Go to Aldi on your own. Make time for a yoga or gym class, or just get up an hour earlier than the kids to enjoy that cuppa or read.  Sometimes however, more dramatic Mam-me time is required… a spa trip. An evening out. The Cinema. That hen party you’ve been invited on that you couldn’t POSSIBLY go on. An overnight date night. Whatever it is, take it. You can’t pour from an empty cup Mammy. And you get no medals for trying.

I’m sure you could add your own to this list.  Part 2 next weekend!

Enjoy the sunshine Ladybelles