It’s an inalienable fact that we all turn into our parents to varying degrees at some point in our lives. Yes, we all like to think that we won’t! That we’ll do things differently when we eventually become parents ourselves… you know what I’m talking about. Like when your parents stopped you going to the disco when you were 13 and in a complete huff of pure adolescence you stormed off and swore blind, that when you became a parent you’d let your own kids do whatever they wanted!
Fast forward to today and I couldn’t imagine letting my precious baby boy do some of the things I did as a teenager! And as for a disco at 13? No chance!
So when did it happen? When was the exact moment that my denial turned into reality? When was the nanosecond I realised I had tuned into my mum? I think when the words ‘he’s my heart scalded that young one’ spilled out of my mouth as if it was second nature, was when I knew I had somehow turned into the quintessential Irish Mammy!
It’s not a phrase I ever expect to say, but then out of the blue there it was. And the scary part was that it was just the tip of the iceberg, because little did I know that I had a full vocabulary of similar Irish Mammy sayings stored inside just waiting to be lobbed into daily life!
1. He’s My Heart Scalded!
The saying that started it off! Generally, this gets thrown into the conversation when I’m talking about my little dude to someone else. Such as, ‘oh he’s into everything climbing up on the furniture and he even pulled down a plate off the table the other day… he’s my heart scaled!’
2. In A Minute
I can distinctly remember my mum saying this phrase to me when I was really small. Normally it would be when she was under pressure, say trying to unload the shopping and fill the fridge, while trying to get the dinner on and keep me happy in the one breath. I’d ask her for something and the reply would be ‘in a minute,’ and boy did that minute feel like an absolute age. Well today this is a phrase I say more times a day then I can count and I suddenly see my own mum in a whole new light!
3. It’s Lovely, But Sure Where Would I Wear It? I Never Go Anywhere
Now-pre baby, I wasn’t exactly a social butterfly, but I did indeed have some semblance of social life and venture out of the house in the evenings to go to events, the cinema, meals etc. But seeing as my husband and I only had our first night out as a couple for the Eir Spiders recently, you could say that this particular saying has become very, very apt! I literally say it to myself when I try on something in the changing room that isn’t jeans or a top… ‘yes it’s a gorgeous dress, but where would I wear it?’
4. I Need Eyes In the Back of My Head
So my little boy turned 1 last week and he literally is like a live wire. He is pulling himself up on everything and starting to shuffle from one piece of furniture to the other. The result is that nothing is safe. I ran to the bathroom the other day and when I came down he had somehow managed to grab a piece of coal through the fire guard and looked as if he had been ‘down pit’ in Sheffield! So this is a phrase I tend to say at least once a day and often follows phrase number 1!
5. My God You’re Freezing
I think once you become a mum you suddenly get a preoccupation with your child’s temperature. My little dude loves to go barefoot in the house, which often means he’s got feet like ice blocks. Now it doesn’t seem to bother him a jot, but I’m always lamenting that he is freezing! Similarly, when we go out on these chilly winter days, he ends up looking like a trussed turkey in the pram for all the layers he’s got on… seriously, Shackleton wasn’t dressed this well.
6. Fine, But If You Fall And Break Your Leg Don’t Come Running To Me
Normally when the little dude has tested my patience to the limit and has tried for the 50th time to hang out of the patio door blinds I back away and say this phrase with complete sincerity and strength… yeah, sure I do! In reality, the second he wobbles, I leap over Bruce Willis style and dive in slow motion to catch the little blighter in case he does actually fall! But still… I’m hoping that one day he won’t call my bluff!