As we come towards the end of another year, us mums are often holding together the threads of our collective sanity. Hurtling towards the festive season with such a velocity, it can often we feel like we arrive on the big day windswept, mascara running and glitter in our eyes! Christmas to me has always seemed more of a marathon rather than a sprint. But despite starting the preparations and present buying early in the year, the week before Christmas always seems to be…well a bit stressful if honest. And it is made more so when we add our children’s, family’s and friends festive happiness to our mental list.
There has been much online conversation in 2018 about the ’emotional workload’ that women and in particular mums shoulder. If you haven’t heard that term, in a nutshell, it’s the never ending list of family and emotional admin that we try to tackle on a weekly basis. And at this time of the year that can mean: buying the gifts, wrapping the gifts, sorting out the festive food shop, remembering the school Christmas jumper day, remembering to buy write cards for teachers/childminders/co-workers/postman/bin man/aunty Fanny twice removed and random people that you’ve only met once!! And then accepting that you WILL have forgotten and probably offended someone.
Expectations are high, because…well it’s Christmas. It’s supposed to be the ‘most wonderful time of the year’, so when things are less than perfect: When your tree looks like you’ve thrown a box of  mismatched decorations at it from 10 paces, rather than hand crafted ornaments and lovingly place them at strategic but relaxed intervals (a la Kirsty Allsopp). When your gifts look like your wrapped them half drunk and lost various clumps of hair and nails varnish to the sellotape (just me!?).
When you make sure the kids and your partner are clean and have something nice to wear on Christmas day but you don’t have time to spend on getting yourself pampered. What can you do?? The only thing for it is to whack on the old Christmas jumper, brush your teeth, and wrestle your resting Grinch face into a tired but happy smile! Which is of course a challenge if you have been woken up at 5.15am with a small knee to the rib cage.
It’s all you can do! Because when all is said and done, Christmas memories are made with laughter, love and people not perfection. 
So the question ‘So this is Christmas and what have you done?’ seems an apt one. A reflective one. Well… The answer is probably: you’ve lived, you’ve loved, you’ve laughed, you cried, you’ve thought you couldn’t go on and you’ve picked yourself up of the floor and have been there for your family. And…most of all you’ve managed to make it to the end of the year in one piece.
Well done you, well done Mama. You are a Christmas miracle!
Love and festive wishes from Sarah and everyone at Hatch xx

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