This week, I have five copies of the new Uma Thurman film – ‘Motherhood’ – to give away. The film is a day in a life of a New York mother, writer, blogger and all round juggler of life. At the same time as planning a birthday party and constantly trying to prevent her car from being towed away, Thurman is trying to write 500 words about what being a mother means to her. So to win a copy of the film, just tell me what motherhood means to you. Winners will be picked at random by an apathetic fourteen year old. (See below for some blurb about the film).
So I’m going to start the ball rolling with my random and in-no-particular-order thoughts on motherhood. If you have read any of my other posts you will have an idea of the kind of issues that I struggle with on a day to day basis. I manage a seven year age gap between two feisty daughters, hide crumbs behind the sofa and every day lose the battle to get my teenager to wear a coat.
But that’s the daily grind stuff, the practical side of being a parent. What about Motherhood? Is that the same thing? ‘Motherhood’ as a concept, in capital letters, must be something more than that – a feeling, an ethos, a way of living. It’s hard for me, having given birth at 17, to separate the ideas of parenthood and adulthood. I have never been a grown up without children. I don’t know what it feels like to have independence without responsibility, so I can’t make a distinction – to me, being a mother is just something that has always been, and something that always will be.
Maybe if I had had children later, I would have had time to get to know a different me first, and would be able to say now with conviction that yes, motherhood for me means X, Y and Z, but I just can’t say for sure what that X, Y and Z might be.
Perhaps that’s normal though. Perhaps that IS the definition of motherhood, that it creeps into every aspect of who you are, grows as you grow, soaks into your very core. Once you have children, it is impossible to detach yourself from what that means. You can’t cut your life into neat chunks and define each slice individually and separately from the others.
So what does motherhood mean to me? I don’t know. And that’s not me just chickening out of an answer, I really don’t know. Motherhood IS me, I can’t remember a time Before Children, I don’t know how my life would be different.
And now I have to go and pick up Belle from a birthday party, hang out some washing and think about packed lunches for tomorrow. We can talk in broad terms, think about concepts, but basically that’s what motherhood is all about…
Win one of five Motherhood DVDs – out on DVD 8th March
Shot entirely on location in New York’s West Village, this bittersweet comedy distils the dilemmas of the maternal state (marriage, work, self, and not necessarily in that order) into the trials and tribulations of one pivotal day. MOTHERHOOD forms a genre of one – no other movie has dedicated itself in quite this way to probing exactly what it takes to be a mother, with both wry humour and an acute sense of authenticity.
Eliza Welch (Thurman) is a former fiction writer-turned-mom-blogger with her own site, “The Bjorn Identity.” Putting her deeper creative ambitions on hold to raise her two children, Eliza lives and works in two rent-stabilized apartments in a walk-up tenement building smack in the middle of an otherwise upscale Greenwich Village. Eliza’s good-natured but absent-minded husband (Edwards) seems tuned out to his wife’s conflicts, not to mention basic domestic reality, while her best friend Sheila (Minnie Driver) understands this – and Eliza — all too well.
MOTHERHOOD is a hymn to the joys and sorrows of raising children, and the necessity of not losing yourself in the process. Log onto www.motherhoodmovie.com for more competitions to be won and details about the film.