First World Problems

Parenting, Random poetry Add comments


When I saw ‘scratch’, I thought card.  Useful word association!  Then I thought shop and that ‘economy’ could be a size of some goods.  I wasn’t sure how a ‘carpet’ would develop a ‘lump’ or where I’d go from there, but I just started writing, and


it all fell into place.

I rarely food shop with my kids in tow, in fact hubby usually does the shopping.  He can grab small things at the Tesco Metro before he hops on the train back from work, and he does our main shop after swimming with our eldest on a Sunday afternoon, while our toddler mucks about with me at home. But I’m good at writing lists…

I think the harassed mum in this poem can drive, and has at least one more kid than me!


Economy   Scratch   Carpet   Lump   Lily   Accessible    Topple    Ritual   Work

After heaving the enormous

Economy pack of loo roll

Onto the groaning trolley,

Replete with toddler,

I staggered over to claim

My four pounds from a scratch card.


Once in, my carpet half obscured

With groceries, I sat down in a heap

(The lump in my coat pocket

Reminding me where I’d stashed

The Lily bulbs).  I sighed:

Home sweet bloomin’ home.


In the kitchen, none of my buys

Seemed bargains, now.

The larder cupboard, I’d forgotten,

Was no longer accessible

Without soup cans threatening

To topple and maim.


And the kids were doing that

Strange post-shopping ritual

Of humming their loudest

While smacking each other into

The nearest available wall; or

‘Just’ releasing every toy.


Later, I took some chocolate

Sank into my couch and…


The damn remote wouldn’t work.


I usually catch the news headlines at some point during the day, and watch something like Outside Source in the evening, and it is perplexing me more and more to hear of people’s lives being ravaged by natural disasters, wars, terrorist attacks, political upheaval etc.

80gsm-quality scrawl

I have two lovely healthy boys, a husband who is a good man by anyone’s yardstick, and enough money for all our essentials; which enables me to focus on bringing up our children.  We are living in a fab little community with people who care about us and offer their assistance should we ever need it; which is just the perfect environment for our kids growing up, not to mention for us to parent within.  We are so blessed.

…and yet I get frustrated with things so easily.

I get tired, I get moody, I get restless, I question evvvverything, I keep thinking I am not properly living somehow – sure there is more within me that needs to get out.  That I am not helping the world’s problems at all: if I was just somehow different (and had some space in my head to think) I could make a real dent in balancing the world’s injustices.

I think many of us say we are grateful, but feel very run down by what we are doing in life.

I sigh if ever the electricity goes out, or our local council has had the audacity to suggest my unrecyclable rubbish being picked up only once every four weeks. (How am I going to wash the clothes now…? What about rodents…?). 

“I shouldn’t have to live like THIS!!”

But what makes me so special?  Why am I owed more from the world than other people?

I truly don’t know I’m born, and I would wager that a lot of us are the same:

Lucky beyond our comprehension.

I give money to all sorts of charities every year and try to help in other ways where I can, but I still hear myself complaining, like the mother in the poem.

It would appear we all cut our cloth accordingly, and most of us are reaching for someday without focusing on the good we have today.

What are your thoughts on this?



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