Show Up

Photography:Fresh 48 & Family Photography

By Hayley Zemontas

As a parent, 
there are no sick days. 
That can be tough. 
You can ring into work, cancel plans.
But your kids still need you to show up. 
It can be hard, being needed so much. 
The constant clamour for attention and touch.
You can feel truly rotten but somehow you keep going;
keep cooking the dinners and hanging the washing.
Giving comfort to your toddler because they still need their mum,
regardless of the fact that you could also do with some,
someone to hug you and let you sleep.
Just a few hours to recover, to breathe.
Sometimes it’s vital to focus on ourselves,
for the sake of our own and our children’s mental health.
It’s not selfishness nor failure to accept a little help.
When you’re not on form, your patience is thin;
only takes a tiny hiccup to snap that string. 
Then you’re awash with grimy guilt
because your children can’t see that you’re full to the hilt.
They’re still learning empathy and care.
All they know is that you’re always there,
to read stories and brush their hair.
No matter how you’re feeling, you still show up.
And Mama, that is ALWAYS enough. 


Hayley Zemontas is a first-time mum to twin girls. She loves writing poetry and finds it very therapeutic. You can find her on her Facebook page: Twinmumtruths.

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