means losing the luxury of being sick and wallowing in bed. Instead, one has to breastfeed (or in my case pump) at regular intervals even if one has to flu and one’s body is tingling with pain. And when one is trying to get some sleep, every sound the babies make causes mommy guilt flutters (how can you be lying here? shouldn’t you be doing something?) apart from the actual noise of the 17-month-old’s meltdowns-a-minute over such tragedies as The Pen I am Trying to Insert Into Its Cover Is Not Cooperating or Mimi Is Having Milk Out of Bottle-I Want-Too.

One’s own mother ceasing to care about one’s well-being, caring only in as much as it affects the well-being of one’s offspring. Sample conversation on Skype:

Me: Mother, I am sick. My throat hurts. My body hurts.

Mother: Oh. What about the kids? Are they okay.

Me: Yes, but I feel terrible.

Mother: Oooh, Benji Benji look here! Peek-a-boo.

Please note that my Mil does the same every time. Even when I was pregnant and dying with the morning sickness all she could say was “but the baby is fine no?” Needless to say, I didn’t talk very much to her.

Now it appears my own mother, flesh of my flesh, etc. is no better.

Conversation on chat this morning:

Mother: Where were you? Was it a holiday yesterday?

Me: Yes, and I was off on Monday because I was too ill.

Mother: Did you go to a doctor? You know if you don’t the kids will get it.

Me: Hello mother, you have turned into Mil. How about some concern for me, your own child?

Mother: Hahn. I’m saying it for your own good. If the kids get sick, it will be bad for you.

Me: Anyway, I did got to the doctor. I got antibiotics. Thanks for caring. Bye.

And with that, my dears, I realised I have been dumped by my own mother in favour of the grandchildren. Admittedly they are adorable, but wahhh I need me a mommy too!