real life

"The day I realised I was turning into my mother."

My Euro mother is my best friend, confidant and worst enemy all rolled into one.

A lady with big hair and personality just as large, who lives by the motto of ‘I know everyfink, you know nuffink”.

She is the matriarchal woman who rules the roost and the household she controls, cleans and caters for. I’m pretty sure, I’ve described every old school, European migrant mother out there and if you have one of these in your own dysfunctional yet somewhat operational family then beware because the end is near.

In time, when it is your turn to push out your own watermelon out of your tiny lemon… not only will the stork bless you with a bundle of joy but the arrival will also symbolise the beginning of the end… Your about to be imprinted on Twilight style (not by a hottie called Jacob either but by your own mother).

Growing up, my Euro mother had quite a few quirky and unconventional beliefs when it came to raising children.

Read more: “They warned me that my world would turn upside down. They lied.”

She would always make sure that we had naked time once a day as she believed that circulation and ventilation was important for our ‘bits and bobs’. Apparently, this would improve fertility and ensure that our ovaries would be operational for future use.

"Growing up, my Euro mother had quite a few quirky and unconventional beliefs when it came to raising children." Image via iStock.

She didn’t believe in baby medication because everything could be cured with dipping or soaking a body part in alcohol to cure all diseases, ailments or ‘make believe’ illnesses that the doctor had invented.

She would also always make sure that we never left the house without a plastic bag of food, as she wasn’t sure if the friends we were visiting would feed us enough or properly. And of course, in her eyes, her food was the best.

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My Mother’s quirky Euro style of parenting also influenced her choice of styling and how she dressed my sister and I. In primary school, I was never as cool as Kelly Taylor and was only allowed to play the role of Andrea Zuckerman at recess when my friends and I would reenact 90210 episodes. My Mothers styling of me involved lots of glitter, sequins and every shade of pink known to Dulux. This was obviously not what all the cool kids were wearing.

I would always roll my eyes and laugh at her old school European ways and it wasn’t until recently that my husband turned around and said, "You have become your mother and I’m scared of you".

"It wasn’t until recently that my husband turned around and said, 'You have become your mother and I’m scared of you'." Image via iStock.

Read more: Plus-sized and pregnant: “How I learned to love my body.”

My world began to crumble and I felt as though the identity that I had spent so long trying to establish in the big wide world had now been a waste of time. I was certain that the experience of dating that toothless, tracksuit wearing thug in high school had made me a better person but this was now irrelevant.

As soon as I gave birth, I become the one person I swore I would never become... my mother.

I didn’t believe it at first and was in complete denial until I got ‘Deja Vu’ shivers and began to see my mother in my parenting ways.

When my daughter first got sick, I rejected baby Panadol and instead soaked her socks in alcohol that my father had made in his backyard shed.

Instead of using baby wipes, I started spitting into tissues (yes, in public mind you) and wiping my daughters face clean until she resembled Sharon Strzelecki from Kath and Kim with her pash rash.

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I started pulling up my daughter’s pants, tucking everything in until she had a camel toe because I was scared her exposed skin would give her piles.

And, of course, naked time started becoming a daily routine.

"I didn’t believe it at first and was in complete denial until I got ‘Deja Vu’ shivers and began to see my mother in my parenting ways." Image via iStock.

There was no escaping my hereditary imprint and as I glanced over at my daughter I started to see… another younger version of me. There she was, in her mismatched ensemble that would make even Lady Gaga blush as my styling was far from an Instagram photo and instead looked more like a Eurovison inspired contestant with a mixture of spots, chevron, faux fur and 50 shades of pink.

As much as it hurts to say it out loud, and is even more painful to admit to my mother, everything I once laughed at and spoke about behind her back has actually come back to haunt me. And through DNA, has now been passed onto my child.

It’s been hard to accept and even harder for my husband to come to terms with but I guess at the end of the day my Euro mother must have done something right.

Not only did I survive but I'm happy, healthy and I'm pretty sure... well I think... I turned out all right in the end.

What do you do that is similar to your mum's parenting ways?

Kathy Rosario is a US based photographer, and the photos she took of her friend's water birth are going viral.

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