IT’S OCSOBER AND, WHILE A MONTH WITHOUT WINE MAY BE A SOBERING THOUGHT, IT’S ALSO A CHANCE TO DISCOVER LESS-GUILTY PLEASURES
Ihave this little saying about being a mother: They whine, so I wine. It’s only fair. Mostly people laugh when I say this. I suspect they think I’m joking. I’m not. There’s nothing funny about the whine of your offspring.
Unless you’ve already had a wine or two, then you laugh and laugh and laugh at them, probably causing long-term emotional and mental scars for said children. Oops.
While the kids rate very low on the Wine4Whine scale, and it’s contained to a weekend tipple, there are days when I’ve opened the fridge at lunch time and caught myself staring at that bottle of white and thinking seriously about it. Because, you know… kids!
So far I’ve resisted temptation and kept my dignity intact, although not so much my patience.
Now, I’m in Ocsober and parenting winefree. This is not a new thing. I’ve handled whining wine-free for months at a time before, mostly to prove that I can.
However, the last time I did Ocsober it turned into Choc-tober when I replaced wine with chocolate.
That inevitably evolved into a sugar-free No-no-November. But that was a few years ago and, as we’ve been a sugar-free household for the past couple of years, there’ll be no chocolate consolation this time around.
No wine, no chocolate – it’s parenting without a safety net. Something for only the very talented – or very stupid. Jury’s still out on which of those I am – we’ll see how the kids turn out in another decade or so.
Anyway, I’m on the hunt for a new reward system – not one for the kids, one for me because I need a reward beyond sending them to bed at the end of each day.
Something where you sit at the end of the week, having managed to keep everyone alive for another seven days, and go: “Oh yeah, I deserve that”.
I know all the memes say our reward is the children themselves. Yeah, yeah. Whatevs. A bit of positive reinforcement doesn’t go astray. All the parenting experts say so. (And yes, I know they’re talking about giving the children the positive reinforcement, but this is not about them for a change.)
Why shouldn’t mothers be rewarded for keeping everyone fed, clothed and breathing for another week?
They say it’s a thankless job and a mother’s work is never done. Whoever “they” were are no longer in charge here. There will be thanks for that work, and if it’s not from a wine bottle or a chocolate bar, I’ll find it somewhere else.
I’m thinking of trying that mysterious thing called “me time”.