Mama Mayhem

Shhh. Don’t mention her

By Riverine Herald

IT’S a tough gig embarrassing my eldest daughter, AYLA but someone’s got to do it.

Dancing around the house in my underwear, laughing too loud at the movies, singing out of tune in the car and asking her friends 3876 questions are apparently just some of the ways I regularly shame AYLA. What can I say? It’s a talent.

However, AYLA is now reaching the age where pretty much everything is off limits, so it’s totally not cool to talk about AYLA with my friends, photograph AYLA or write about AYLA.

Which is tough considering half of my content for my Mama Mayhem is about AYLA.

You see, AYLA is in that teen angst/embarrassment phase of her life, when anything to do with her standing out instead of blending in is absolutely mortifying.

So you can imagine my columns have become a bit of a sticking point.

But it’s not like I’m constantly mentioning AYLA in my columns. Having AYLA’s name pop up time and time again could become really annoying.

Plus, it’s not as if I’m hiding in the bushes at AYLA’S school to document her comical theatrics at lunchtime. Even though that would likely give me some pretty hilarious material.

With AYLA starting high school this year, her friends are at that age where they are starting to read the newspaper and therefore my columns (totally surprising I know, but I’m not complaining).

And they love pointing out the fact that they happened to read about AYLA’s latest exploits, achievements and occasional misfortunes.

Which doesn’t go down well with my almost teen daughter.

How dare I talk about how amazing, wilful, quirky, talented or downright hysterical AYLA is.

Life is hard enough without taking yourself too seriously. Hence why I regularly share my own misadventures with anyone who’ll listen. I mean, if you can’t laugh at yourself, what hope do you have?

And, one day, AYLA will be able to look back on these funny stories and laugh.

Unfortunately, circa 2019 that logic doesn’t work with AYLA and she proceeded to give me an ultimatum. Ask her permission or don’t write about her at all.

It made me wonder though. Does AYLA have a case to be annoyed? Are my columns ruining her reputation as the coolest kid on the block? Well, if it keeps the boys away, then I’ve done my job.

But in all seriousness, as much as it kills me, I have to do the right thing and respect AYLA’s wishes. I mean, it could be worse. At least she hasn’t barred me completely from writing about her.

And if that happens, and I’m 99 per cent sure it will, I may have to start making stuff up. Never let the truth get in the way of a good story, right?

But then again, I still have a younger, more impressionable child I can exploit.