Lipstick on the cheek

For a long time I’ve become more and more aware of just how much my mum actually did (and still does) for us, but having my own baby has really made me get it. I’ve spent many nights recently wondering when the superpowers that single parents, like my mum, must kick in because lord knows being a mum is exhausting enough when the other parent is on the scene and willing to get their hands dirty.

In many ways my mum is the victim of her own success as she has instilled in both of us the belief that we can do anything we set our mind to. This has resulted in me living 2 hours away in Liverpool and my brother considerably further away in Bangkok. My mum has resisted the temptation to be selfish and has never once made us feel guilty for our decisions. But what goes around comes around and if you ask my mum what her reward is for all the hard work she would definitely tell you that it is getting the chance to be a nan.

Across the classes and clubs I have been to I always like to look out for the grandparents looking after their mini for the day. They’re easy to spot as they have a look of absolute pride plastered across their face while they lap up every giggle and wiggle of the little person they get to adore, spoil and hand back before the consequences of being spoilt really kick in!

At Water Babies last week my Mum and Aunty (one of those honorary Aunties that isn’t related but has spent so much time at your house drinking wine that they’re pretty much family) came to sit on pool side. Water Babies classes are really relaxed about bringing family along to watch and there’s something about seeing the babes in the water that feels really special. Between the beginning and end of a chapter family coming to visit will really see the progress the babes have made. As the two of them sat on the edge trying to make sure they caught every moment on camera it was gorgeous to see how much this little fish, who has only been around for 6 months, has enriched so many other people’s lives.

As I write this I have just put Phoebe down in her own room for the first time and my heart is breaking a little that our days of sharing a room are nearly over. When I think how quickly those months have gone I really appreciate why being a grandparent must be so special. It’s your second chance to enjoy all the little miracles that come with raising a child. The more of these we can share the better, whether it’s swimming, reading, playing with toys or trips to the park.

As we left the baths that day I noticed a lipstick smudged kiss on Phoebe’s cheek. Nanny’s stamp of approval.

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