The Other Mother

My son has another mother. There I said it. Well actually he HAD another mother. She lived long ago and she is no longer alive.

Shame, she sounded fun…

Took my son to loads of places, watched all the best films, owns the entire Julia Donaldson collection not just 95% of it. Lived in a castle, with a moat no less. Had another child as well; an older brother for my son. I don’t know much about him or if there was another parent around, but the mother? Yep I know a lot about her.

Please tell me this isn’t weird!? Ok, it is a bit weird. And indeed we do get some strange looks sometimes when the ‘other mother’ is bandied around in public.

I was doing some research and children can be very tuned into past lives – it’s much more of a common phenomenon than I thought, not that I’ve thought about it much. The theory, I believe, is that that young children’s brains are sufficiently uncluttered by life to provide space for memories of other things – like entire cluttery lives lived before.

Hmm, he does sometimes have an air of someone just passing through this life before the next one starts. He recently gave some slightly alarming hints that actually all this is replaceable…dispensable even. We got a bit cross with each other last week and he declared that he would be “finding another mother soon”. That he would “knock on all the doors of all the windmills in Scotland to see if anyone would like a child”. That’s not how he found me but who am I to pour scorn on whatever his next life may hold.

Except that, while I’m no psychologist, I just don’t think he is remembering past lives (or planning future ones). Obviously.

It seems to me that the subconscious mind of a small child is not as ‘sub’ as it later becomes. All sorts of little and big thoughts and worries get pushed up to the surface then bubble over in what can sometimes feel like a pantomime of behaviours, from food refusal to toy obsessions…to other mothers.

You see the other mother appeared on the scene shortly after my daughter was born. Perhaps she was a convenient imaginary tool to help a bright little three year old work out his new family dynamic. The other mother might just be me, or a version of me anyway? The mother I was when I was his mother and his mother only. Back when I was less shouty, more fun and owned a drawbridge.

Whatever the reason I’m growing quite fond of her. She sort of hangs around now to give my son an aura of knowledge and history so he feels he can contribute to grown up proceedings. Because (other than EVERYONE who knows him) who really is going to argue with an earnest little boy seriously declaring the existence of his other mother?

4 thoughts on “The Other Mother

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