It started with a cuddle and ended with a smack.

Yesterday was my son Jack’s 5th Birthday. He woke up, marched over to the dresser, put on a pink number 5 badge and calmly announced that he indeed was now 5 and was ready to receive praise and presents. We were in a hotel room with auntie, uncles and cousins and he was drunk on power, surrounded by people wishing him a happy birthday.

Hey! Check me out! I am 5… You must do as I say.

We went out for breakfast and he told the waitress that it was his birthday. The cafe then came out with cake and a sparkler singing happy birthday. Jack soon cottoned on to the fact that the more he told people that it was his birthday, the more free shit he scored. He told the flight attendant on the plane home that is was his birthday and he scored a packet of M & M’s, which was so very surprising as we were flying Virgin Blue and those dudes are notoriously tight. I suppose the $3 will come out of that kind attendants pre-taxable pay packet. He told the lady at the Smiggle shop that this was indeed a marvellous day because, wait for it, it was his birthday! And he got a pencil. He told the taxi driver that it was his birthday and the taxi driver grunted. Jack was not so impressed.

And because I am such an dis-organised Mamma, our plane touched down exactly one hour before we were due to host friends for champagne and cake. And I panicked because the bakery was shut and I cannot bake for shit. So I had to do a little detective work and found an establishment that had 8 cupcakes left. God love the Internet.

So all (the offspring of) my best mates came over and they trashed the house while the parents drank some champers and reminisced how we used to spend Sunday afternoons at the pub, not celebrating kids birthdays.

By this stage, Jack had some an extreme amount of sugar inhaling and was getting louder and louder. Concerts, singing and dancing. Opening pink presents and squealing. He received this top and hung it up, claiming it was his “going out”top. Where are you “going out” to Jack?

As the bath dinner and bed battle loomed, Jack turned totally feral. And when he threw a box at me in a rage, he copped a medium sized smack.

Now when I was younger, I remember getting a smack from my mum and her saying “This hurts me more than it hurts you…” and I recall at the time thinking “How the fuck can that possibly be?” I totally get it now though. And as Jack lay howling in his bed before falling into a deep 10 hour sleep, I felt like the worst mother in the world. Apart from Rosemary West. Oh and Dina Lohan.

So I suppose my question is, Is there a special place in hell for mums who smack their kids on their birthday?