One of the things that is ridiculous about me (and trust me I am positively abundant in ridiculousity) is my quiet passion for Scooby Doo. In fact sometimes when I am wandering the house wearing my woman on the verge face, a little voice inside my head whispers “How about a little Scooby Doo?”.
Where once upon a time this was a passion I could indulge without judgement, by pretending that Finn too loved Scooby and his mates (he doesn’t, never has, even at the age of three, he was far more grown up than me) and we were simply enjoying a little Mum and boy time, now I either have to get a bit blatant about it (“I’m watching Scooby Doo, like it or lump it“) or I have to wait until the house is empty, make a cup of tea, get a blanket and pretend my own Mum has popped me on the sofa for a bit of rest and recuperation.
And then I go and solve a mystery with those “pesky kids”.
Sometimes I barely watch it. It’s just on as I flip through Readly or play with the cat or indulge in a spot of navel gazing, but the point is not that I am hanging on to every word out of Shaggy’s mouth, but that I am allowing myself to be soothed by something I personally find comforting, cosy and silly.
For let’s face it being a grown-up is hard-going isn’t it? So much responsibility and worry and organising and stressing to do on a daily basis. And often even that which we do to feel better is fraught with decisions to be made or the consumption of other people’s drama in stories and films. We never get to rest. To just switch off our brain for a little while and let ourselves remember what it felt like to be a child. Utterly without responsibility and with the certainty of an adult to fuss us for a while. To Mother us when our little hearts are crying out for mothering.
And so in my own Mum’s absence and in a house with a lot of masculine energy, I mother myself. I do what I have long done for Finn when I see he is getting overwhelmed by life, or simply exhausted by the sheer dailiness of it and I call “Cosy time”: Oh yes, when the world gets too much with me as it did last week, I call time on high brow pursuits and watch Scooby doo instead. I prepare a saucer smiling with Jammy Dodgers, pour a glass of cold milk and regress.
And it is nothing short of heaven.
I hum the theme tune happily. Re-watch episodes I have seen a million times (I’m not fussed on the jazzed up versions of Scooby of which scandalously there are many) and generally have the kind of time that would be bound to incite much giddy mirth were proper grown-ups to arrive in my living room and find me muttering under my breath, its the janitor, its ALWAYS the janitor!
I mother myself.
Not just with Scooby Doo, but with instructions to go to bed early, to have a bath, to stop the world and slow down for a while to catch my breath, I mother myself. I get stern and I do what she would have done and say, yes, buy it, enjoy it, eat it because life doesn’t have to be all serious endeavour and worthy sacrifice. Sometimes we are allowed to weep and wail inside our own heads and thereafter announce that only half an hour with Fred and Daphne will resolve the matter.
I mother myself. And today I want to encourage you to Mother yourself too. To make a habit of it. Not perhaps with Scooby Doo, but with your own version of comfort, your own means of soothing a furrowed brow when you are just too tired to even pretend to be up to adulting today.
There’s still a little girl in all of us isn’t there?