Every night I hang up fresh tea towels.

It has become a marker for me, a scene that could become a montage of how quickly life flows – the mundane signpost to another day gone by. Faces wiped clean, cuddles given, band-aids applied, snacks delivered…

I show up.

On grumpy days, hard days, happy days and exhausting ones. I deliver lectures, deliver children to places they need to go. ‘Is it enough?‘ I wonder in my unguarded moments. ‘Should I be helping others more? Finding causes to bury myself into?’ 

I stare at the cheeky faces in front of me. Pick up the baby who is beginning to realise his separateness. Clutch tiny fingers in the palm of my hand. See the lean kid who was only yesterday my toddler. Cheer with abandon at the boy performing his actions with gusto in his Christmas concert. Murmur with appreciation at her masterpiece on crumpled paper.

I am ‘only’ a mother. It is the ‘only’ job I have.

And, I remind myself, it is the most important one I could ever hope to fulfil.

This post is inspired by the Five Minute Friday writing challenge. Each week I join with this talented group of writers, free writing for five minutes in accordance with a prompt. Today’s prompt is ‘only’. 

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