This is where the journey off the beaten mommy track begins – at least, for me, in writing.

There are years to make up for. My first child was born in 2002; my second in 2007. There have been countless memories, moments big and small, steps taken, milestones reached - alas all unchronicled.

This is an attempt at rectifying that. I hope to recapture – and relate as the days yet unfold - all that is wonderful and terrible; exciting and exhausting; tender and fierce, about being a wife and mother.

So…onto my first post.

This afternoon my husband laughed his head off in a moment of karmic clarity (I’m not sure I was as amused.) My son, all 18 months and 11 kgs of him – had gone and done himself proud with a “boom boom” to rival all boom-booms. Judging from the smell alone, and knowing what sonny boy had had the night before (smoked fish chowder), none of us wanted to address it. J and I thus negotiated for non-changing rights via a heated game of rock, paper, scissors. Luckily for me, I won.

This, I was to find out shortly, meant absolutely nothing as I spent the next few minutes chasing my son up and down the stairs, to and from the kitchen, and in and out of the bathroom. The skirmish finally ended with me descending upon said son like a hawk to its prey and carrying him off to where dad sat with a smirk on his face. (Wait a minute – why WAS I doing all the chasing??? Hmm.)

It took the two of us – fully functioning, totally capable adults - to change the damn nappy, as said son wriggled on the floor, threw a mini-tantrum, and bucked like a bronco on uppers. When it was over, and I rose to throw the offending article (the diaper, not said son) away, husband laughed from across the room in an eerily villainous way. “You wanted a son…well you got a son.” Snicker, snicker, gleeful snicker - all the while conveniently forgetting that he was the other half of the equation rightfully to blame for current situation in the first place.

I don’t recall my daughter ever truly giving me this much grief in the diaper changing department. Granted, it’s been some years ago now, but certainly as far back and as hard as I can remember, it only ever took one of us to do it, and certainly always well within the time it took to sing, say the alphabet or the Sesame Street Theme Song

And there are more things. As a toddler, my daughter was just a tad bit shy and rarely went anywhere without me. My son hugs strangers in the grocery store and gamely goes off exploring his surroundings without so much as a by-your-leave. My daughter is more artistic than she is sporty and is a bit awkward and gangly; my son climbs furniture and kicks balls like he was born to do it and zooms about in a frenzied bundle of activity. My daughter and I used to spend hours reading books, lying in bed, watching the clouds, drawing pictures. My son can barely sit still through a commercial and likes being outside the house all the time – no matter if it’s cold and wet and raining. My daughter thrived happily on formula; my son barely drinks the stuff. It goes on and on.

I was told many, many times that boys are different from girls, and that – sure as the sun sets every evening – one’s offspring will have different personalities. This I can now say to be absolutely true, having now had one of each. I know this from experience. P is – and always will be – separate and different from S, (and vice-versa) and I should not expect one to be just like the other (though I do know at least one thing they share in common – they’re both mine!)

So now as I get ready for bed and watch the sleeping forms around me, I say a little prayer to the heavens above. Firstly, that the carpets downstairs have nary a trace of baby poo on them. But moreso, and with all the fervor I can possibly muster – I pray for three other things.

The first is wisdom, that I may always know the best way to respond to my children’s differing personalities and needs.

Secondly, I ask for patience, to hear them out and listen well to what they are saying – or not saying - and act accordingly.

And thirdly, I ask for the gift of time — that I may enjoy them for as long as I can, as hard as I can, while I can.

Until next time everyone. Good night and sweet dreams.Goodnight