“It ain’t no use putting up your umbrella till it rains.”

My name is Anna and I am a worrier.

I never used to worry, in fact in the BC years I was a ‘couldn’t carelesser’, but the minute I found out I was pregnant I started to worry.

Will I be a good incubator?
Will I want to eat coal?
How will I get this baby out? (Yes, I knew how nature intended me to remove it but I wasn’t convinced, I didn’t even read past week 33 in my ‘how to be pregnant book’ as it all started to get a bit icky).

Once Aoife was here safely the worry didn’t lessen, it got worse!

Is she eating too much?
Is she eating too little?
Is she too hot?
Is she too cold?
Why isn’t she sleeping?
Why is she sleeping too much? (Ohhhhh the panic the first night they sleep through!)

The overriding worry from the start though has been that I will fail in helping her become the very best person she can be.
I find myself worrying that I’m constantly sending mixed messages to my little girl and I won’t be able to help her grow into the wonderful woman I know she will be.

I always said if I had a daughter she wouldn’t be a ‘pink’ little girl. It turns out I had no say in the matter. She was drawn to Disney Princesses and glitter like a budgie to a mirror but I worry that her love of princesses and shiny things will stop her being seen as the wonderful, clever little girl she is.

I worry that she won’t feel able to stand up for herself and have courage in her convictions (then I get told off for putting the Elsa sock on the Anna foot and realise this is probably one concern I don’t need to dwell on).

I worry that when she’s at school people might not want to play with her and she’ll feel bad.
I worry that when she’s at school she might not want to play with others and might make them feel bad.

I worry that her liking that Little Mix song is the start of a love of ‘pop’ music.
I worry that one day she might sing that Lily Allen song in class, not the radio edit.

I worry that I might be making her grow up too quick.
I worry that I might smother her and make her come across as a bit immature.

I worry that letting her do her homework straight after school might make her think I’m pushing her too hard.
I worry that not letting her do her homework straight after school might make her think I didn’t care about her school work.

I worry that her seeing me put my game face on every morning will make her think that’s just what everyone does and she will want to hide her beautiful face too soon.
I worry that every comment, made by others, on her weight since she was born will be floating around in her subconscious waiting to leap into action when she’s 11.

I worry that growing up she’ll be too much like me and I’ll be fretting about what she’s getting up to when she’s not at home (though she’ll be having loads of fun that I just don’t want to know about)
I worry that growing up she’ll be nothing like me and she’ll be home all the time, going nowhere and then full of regrets for all the fun she didn’t have.

I worry that she will settle and make do, plod along falling into a relationship and a job and an existence.
I worry that she’ll be flitting off here, there and everywhere with fingers in every pie but no actual substance to her life and maybe ending up lonely.

I worry that she’ll grow up resenting me for the things I did for her.
I worry that she’ll grow up resenting me for the things I didn’t do for her.

Then I remember that she’s five. She’s just five.

And though these are (mostly) legitimate worries I need to stop worrying about them. If I carry on she’ll be 18 and I’ll have worried my way through her whole childhood. Instead I’m going to let her do pretty much whatever she wants (within reason, respecting the rules of the house and following basic health & safety) so she can be who SHE truly wants to be right now this very minute.

I’m not playing that Little Mix song anymore though.





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