Who are you again?

26 Apr

This post is inspired by Megdoan.

Noone knows, or even asks my name anymore. I am “so and so’s mummy”.

To be fair, i am the same. I have become an expert at avoiding the need to address anyone by name, and can manage hours of conversation without it.

If i’m out with the buggy people wave and say hello, sometimes stop to talk. If i venture out alone, noone recognises me. I am not wearing my “so and so’s mummy” badge.

When i bump into people at the park and start chatting, it’s only because their son has recognised my son, and it seems rude not to pass a few pleasantries.

I have never before known the name of the postman, or had so much to discuss with the man who delivers my shopping.

When we visit friends they sometimes ask whether my sons would like to stay for tea. Starving, i must wait until i get home. By then i am too busy.

I find this very similar to the situation at kids parties. There is never food for the adults. And the dancing is almost always exclusively for the children too. I wouldn’t mind except it’s the nearest i’ve come to a party for nearly 5 years.

My social life begins at 9 and ends at 5, and is dictated by who my sons like. It’s amazing how much conversation you can manage when you only have children in common.

I regularly get mail addressed to “The guardians of X”. The only mail i get for myself is bills. Otherwise they are addressed to the “householder”. Do the postal service not know my name anymore either?

It seems that, for a large part of the day at least, i have become invisible. Lost my identity. My needs, likes and dislikes no longer factored in.

At least when i worked i was Henrietta for a few hours a day. I miss that.

Being a stay at home mum can be lonely. It has taken me a good long while to start to feel like somebody again.

But then again, that’s a whole new post.

12 Responses to “Who are you again?”

  1. TheMadHouse April 26, 2010 at 7:12 am #

    What a great post, yes I am mini and maxi’s mum, but guess what I did food for the adults at Maxi’s Party!

  2. Emma April 26, 2010 at 7:20 am #

    Mother has became my new name. I didn’t think I could ever get used to being called a Mother but I have. At Oli’s 1st Birthday Party I catered for what Me & Oli like which was lots of Indian snacks! Good Post 🙂

  3. jellybeansmusic April 26, 2010 at 7:24 am #

    A post that made me both laugh, then sigh in recognition. I do get cross that I answer to ‘Tobias/Charlie/Sebastian’s mum’ but also know that I have spoken to the same women at the school gates for what feels like centuries now and still can’t remember their names. As to the work thing – I also now answer to small children in Tesco shouting ‘jellybean ‘…………..

  4. Sarah in deepest, darkest Lomellina April 26, 2010 at 8:44 am #

    Nail. Head. Hit.

    With knobs on.

    It does get better though.

    Mine is coming up for ten, so I am re-emerging as a person in my own right (I’m kind of slow on the parenting curve, so I’m sure you can except similar far earlier).

    Mine greatest complaint is that my son spent the last decade carefully picking friends who had mothers that I either had nothing in common with or were stark raving nutters.

    That was fun. Loneliness compounded by being in the middle of people…. and really wishing I wasn’t cos it only highlighted how the more obvious solutions, weren’t solutions, but rather further complications because the sole connection of having shared the experience of lugging a baby on an increasingly distressed bladder just wasn’t enough of a foundation for more than awkward chit chat and wishing I was somewhere else.

  5. MegDoan April 26, 2010 at 10:02 am #

    Thank you so much! Spot on! xx

  6. Crystal Jigsaw April 26, 2010 at 11:01 am #

    “Are you Amy’s mum?” I get asked often at school. No, Amy is my daughter.

    Great post.

    CJ xx

  7. positivelydivorced April 26, 2010 at 11:53 am #

    Oh I couldn’t agree more! People without kids can be bad too – kids, seems to = no brain, no interests, no identity.

    I’ve made sure I try and do things outside of the kids latterly. Even just an evening class has made a difference to feeling like ‘me’ again.

  8. Deer Baby April 26, 2010 at 12:07 pm #

    oh Yes. I had a post all ready to go – The Loneliness of the Stay at Home Mother but then author Alan Sillitoe died at the weekend who wrote The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner and it seemed a bit disrespectful.

    But now you’ve said it all for me. And spot on too. It does get better. Like positivelydivorced I’m doing a course just for me.

    And I keep thinking how lucky I am to be SAHM. Lots of my friends would KILL to be in my position.

    • marketingtomilk April 26, 2010 at 12:18 pm #

      Pls still post it. (when a respectful amount of time has passed of course!)
      have any of your friends ever been a SAHM? They might be fairly surprised by what they find….

  9. Rosemary April 26, 2010 at 7:15 pm #

    That’s sad but don’t you realise that you now have the best persona the world can offer – that of a mother? Mothers are so important, be they called Henrietta or Mummy, and will never ever be forgotten nor overlooked, but loved and respected for always. Isn’t that better than being known as Henrietta for a few hours a day in some crumby, well-paid job? You will learn that it is!

  10. bsouth April 28, 2010 at 7:35 pm #

    Note to self, address Henri by name next time I see her.

    I know how you feel (as do all mummys I should think). It’s very frustrating sometimes but worse is the fact that I know I do it to other mummys. I spend the time I’m with them desperately trying to think of their name and not daring to ask.

  11. Isy September 10, 2010 at 12:33 pm #

    You make children, you become a mum until the rest of your life! That’ life.. and not such a bad life if you ask me.. I love it. I love meeting new friends because our children met at school, I love having the chance to speak to the postman who I’d never seen before and I love it when people look at my children in fascination or proudness then I can proudly say: I’m their mum!! 😀

    Just make sure you book yourself once or twice a year, a nice week away from everyone so you can be you and loose the mummy, the employee and/ or the wife.. just: YOU.

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