Glamorous moms in the playground inspire me to start matching my socks at least

The playground has become the new nightclub, not because I go there to take the shift, but simply because I never know where to hang out.

In the last budget, money was allocated for our local playground, and while I appreciate it, I think I would have preferred the government to just write us a check, since every time Ted and I tackle the slides and swings, we are almost always the only ones there.

I was so pissed off that on more than one occasion I almost called the guards on myself because the whole thing has a break in.

Although we like to support the locals, when Ted and I feel like mingling a bit, we put on our best dungarees and head for the town lights of Dingle, where the much bigger playground is sure to be a hit. attract crowds.

The parents huddle together as a team at halftime, holding coffee mugs and swapping stories about how best to clean up vomit and other messy issues.

Usually it’s me who goes from parent to parent, asking the best way to get the sick smell out of a car seat, much like I used to go from corner to the other from the local nightclub to ask for a shift, and still receive an equally lukewarm response.

I play being the cool parent until Ted tries the big slide and suddenly all this creepy stuff City of Holby the episodes come back in droves.

I want him to be brave, but oh, my nerves. I push it toward more baby-friendly play spaces, but it all feels like a death trap when your heart takes the shape of a curly-haired, big-eyed two-year-old.

Being on the road often with Ted means we’ve explored plenty of playgrounds in our time, and the Mammy Mafia is always easy to spot – you know the type, a fake tan giving just that right hint of sun-kissed glow, highlights sophisticated, and sportswear at the rendezvous.

Looking good as a mom makes you feel like yourself, the “you” before the little ones arrived. One thing I really want to work on in the future is putting in some effort to be myself again. I’m not saying I’m going to be rocking a debs dress and upstyle anytime soon, but these glam moms are inspiring me to try and start matching my socks at least.

The Mammy Mafia in any city may seem outwardly difficult to penetrate. But I find the question ‘I take it you don’t have wipes?’ is the 2022 equivalent of that old chestnut of the 2000s “Is this your wadi or half-wadi? when it comes to instant icebreakers.

Gone are my disco days of naming a friend to approach a band with the opening ‘are you going to switch homies?’, a question that could be met with any type of response imaginable – from mockery to external hostility to the most terrifying ‘keep it up.’ These days, social cliques are much more permeable since we’re all here in the trenches together, and everyone is getting by.

A huge difference between playgrounds and nightclubs is that there are no queues for the toilets – revelers go when and where they want (babies, that is not the parents). I don’t see this as a good thing: Nightclub bathrooms have always been where I’ve had the most confidence, where I’ve gotten my most valuable advice, and where I’ve built my strongest bonds with friends. And there’s something similar to that found near the swing sets, when Ted throws a little strop to be told we have to go. At times like these, everything can suddenly feel too much, overwhelming, almost.

Ted is rarely uncooperative, but when he objects, a mom I’ve known since I was a teenager and who’s always impeccably dressed walks up to me and says, “Parenting is hard, isn’t it? isn’t it?” And in that brief exchange, we’re back in the ladies room, swapping lipstick and pumping up before braving the dance floor once more.

It is in these exchanges, when we really see each other, that we can face anything: a toddler crisis, a romantic rejection, a bartender telling us that we cannot bring our drinks on the dance floor. while I’m quite sure I’m not gonna fall he – ‘oh, oops here, let me mop this up, I don’t know how it slipped out of my hands.’

There is no Amhrán na bhFiann until the end of recess. We are subject to the whims of our little offspring who are as impossible to argue with as I was, at 19, when I was suddenly struck by an irresistible desire to get tokens.

At the playground, we detach ourselves and promise ourselves the same time tomorrow. There’s a great understanding, almost a bond, going together, and this time if someone gets sick, it certainly won’t be me. My disco days are well behind me, so you know, progress etc.

Harold B. McConnell