Striking Mums, Am I Different Or Unique.

For this week in Striking Mums the lovely Kate has set the subject of being different. At first I though well am I different then once I started realising differences I couldn’t stop, what a great subject.

I became different at 14 when my Mum and Dad decided to move from Lancashire. I grew up in Essex and loved my life; I worked in my Dads video shop, was always out and about had lovely friends and a boyfriend. Then one day like a bolt out of the blue they announced we were moving to Lancashire. 
They had been several times on Holiday, but I had stayed at my Nan and Granddads, I had no interest in visiting the country. I remember looking at them as they were telling me thinking “you are ruining my life” devastated is an understatement. The house went on the market and we took a trip to Lancashire to house hunt, they had completely fallen in love with it!  Me? I hated the sheep, hills,  smell, the accent was soooo annoying. I just did not want to live there. 
My next memory is being sat in the car listening to the soundtrack of dirty dancing, sobbing as we travelled towards our new life. From that day forwards my brothers and I became different.  

The first day of high School they all looked at my brother Stephen and I like we were aliens, we talked funny. I remember thinking “do they not realise its them that talked funny, not us”. On the School bus that day Stephen and  I entertained the bus by saying words by request. Do you know to this day it amuses northerners how I say bath! Every time I get a new group of students it takes them a month or so to get over the novelty of my accent. 
Stephen and I made friends very quickly, and within weeks had both made circles of friends and to my surprise,settled in very quickly. Although in the back of my head I was always moving back to Essex. Stephen actually has a Northern accent now! I am somewhere in the middle, here they say I sound like a southerner, in Essex they say I sound like a northerner.
My Mum, Dad and Terry only lived up north for 7 years; I don’t think my Mum and Terry ever really settled in fully. Stephen couldn’t make his mind up so dotted between the two, but has finally settled up north. I met Chris just before they moved back, I moved in with him when my family moved back and we married shortly after.
Once married we lived in Essex for 6 years and made a lovely life there, we built our careers and C.Vs whilst we had a fantastic time visiting London at the weekends. But once Jack came along we quickly realised we could not maintain family life when working long hours and Chris leaving at 5am and getting back at 7pm. It works for some, but not for us. So, we took the decision to move back to Lancashire.
Now, we are happy and settled in the North, I miss my friends, family and the weather but we visit often. But have amazing friends and family here too. So where am I from, what am I? If I had to answer that question, I would say a Northerner with Southern roots and a funny in-between accent. I have had a great life so far and wouldn’t change a thing. I am so glad my Mum and Dad made that decision to move away. It turned me into a confident person that can take on anything; change does not faze me one little bit. And all the things I used to hate the sheep, hills, and smell. I now love and couldn’t live without. And I am surrounded by the Northern accent which I have learnt to love. Well, you have to when you have a Northern Husband and Children. 
When I come home from holiday, I always look at my surroundings and thank my lucky stars. 
So, on to Kate’s Questions. 
1. Are you different and, if so, how?
I would say I am different because I have moved about more than my friends, and I speak differently to everyone around me.
2. Do you celebrate your uniqueness or strive to fit in?
Celebrate definitely, I don’t try to keep my accent, it’s just part of me. I don’t think it works to try to be what others want or expect you to be.
3. Are you ever judgemental of other mums who are different from you? Answer honestly even if only in your own head.
Oooh sorry yes, I am quite strict, I expect the boys to demonstrate manners and good behaviour, and I think I have surrounded myself with likewise friends. I cant stand being out with friends who’s kids run riot and are badly behaved and rude, I know kids aren’t robots but you have to have standards. 
I understand it’s each to their own, but if I am in the company of naughty kids I am on edge. There is a difference between acting like children and downright naughtiness isn’t there? We were once in the company of a friend whose child walked up to them and slapped their face during a paddy, and they weren’t a toddler.  I was horrified. I don’t want the boys thinking that is acceptable, the parents did nothing on that occasion! Please note though my children are far from perfect or angels, they can be monsters at times,I am not delusional. That makes me sound bad doesn’t it?

As for Mums being different, absolutely not all my friends are so different and thats what I love about them.

 What would you like to be different about you?
My teeth, I need to get a brace but am scared, as I was allergic to the last one.
5. Have you ever being attacked or bullied for being different? How did that affect you?
No I don’t think so, only in fun. But I am one of those people that will always speak out. My friend Louise said to me only this week” you say what others think” not sure if that’s a good thing or not?
6. If you had to write an advert for yourself as a limited edition ,what would you say to make people think you were great?
Ha ha I would say,
Enthusiastic, passionate, confident, and loyal friend and family member.  Who loves a challenge in life and wine. 
So there is it, why I am unique, I love that term limited edition. We are all different. That’s what is great about people, I mean be honest if you had to spend all your time with somebody the same as you they would drive you mad. Variety is the spice of life. 
Sorry Kate I have turned that into war and peace.