I’ve been (actively) mummy to just a baby for most of today.
This doesn’t usually happen. It is an extreme rarity (otherwise known as a cold day in hell) for me to have multiple offers of kid free time in one single solitary day. This particular Friday is a gleaming, sparkly, sun shining, blue birds singing, all is right with the world kind of exception. And yet the word solitary seems all of a sudden very appropriate.
It’s now 5:12pm. Still Friday. I checked. I’m standing in the middle of the living room, aimlessly, staring at the clock.
My littlest baby has a pretty rigid set of sleep requirements during the day, so on this day, with a frequently out of action baby and twins who have had two separate excursions spanning the majority of the days waking hours, I’ve had somewhat a lot of, what I seem to recall (in my very distant memory), is referred to as “me time”.
Me time, when it happens, usually entails (after the obligatory grocery shop accompanied by the one rickety wheeled trolley in the entire centre that insists on veering stubbornly to the left no matter what direction it’s steered) popping into Kmart/Big W/Target (we’ll call them The Big Three, shall we?) Here I will spend 95% of my time perusing the duplo toy, kids apparel and children’s decor sections, before a quick and fruitless duck around homewares and a mad (but law abiding) dash home before the littles sleep or dinner time.
This being in the house alone with only a sleeping baby thing is just plain creepy.
It’s now 5:32pm. I’m starting to have fleeting thoughts that the loving, kind, trusted family member who has generously taken Eenie and Meenie out for an ice cream may have, in fact, kidnapped them. Perhaps some sort of electro chemical disruption of the neurons within her brain has led her to suddenly do something completely out of character? It happens. I googled it. I console myself with fact that this person is indeed a beloved family member. Implicitly trusted. Sensible. Loving. Kind. Generous. Helps me when no one else is able. Loving. Kind. Generous. Have I made my point? My sudden internal questioning, is clearly without cause or precedent.
Maybe someone else has kidnapped all three of them. Yes. That’s more plausible. Brain wracking ensues. What were they all wearing? Where might we discover the empty pram…how might I go about initiating the search effort? I wonder fleetingly if this has something to do with the old lady who gate crashed Eenie and Meenie’s second birthday party and tried to steal one of my girlfriend’s handbags before threatening to kill my husbands 87 year old grandma. True story. But that’s one for another day. Hmmm probably not her. I doubt she has that kind of foresight.
I wish I was kidding. Or exaggerating, even, this internal dialogue for the purposes of this blog. Dramatic effect etc. But alas, I am not. I did actually think these things. Yep. I’m that person.
It’s 5:35 and I miss my kids. They haven’t even been out all day. This is ridiculous.
Sometimes I wait all afternoon for 7pm to come around so I can put the kids to bed and just have a moment to myself. Then I find myself on the couch flicking through iphone photos and videos of them, staring at the baby monitor screen, talking to my husband about funny things they’ve done and said over the course of the day. Why do we do this? I know I’m not alone. This is a thing, isn’t it? This is what we parents do. You just want them to go to sleep at the end of the day, and then you find yourself kiiiiinda soooorta wishing you could wake them to give them a cuddle. You discover yourself feeling guilty about getting mad at them at some point during the course of the day, over something completely legitimate that you had every reason to be mad over. Then you creep into their bedroom to give them just one more little kiss goodnight, step on that infernal creaky floorboard, that’s situated in a different spot every damn night, and all of a sudden that sneaky little desire to wake them up for a cuddle turns into sheer terror that you actually might have!
It’s 18 minutes until 6-I’m-a-weird-O’clock. My husband has arrived home from work, the baby is up but the kids still aren’t home. I pick up my iphone to call their chaperone for the afternoon just to check.
It’s 5:42 and 34 seconds, just as I’ve hit the call button on my phone. The doorbell rings.
And just like that the house is filled with blessed mayhem again. Silence squandered. The dog is having an epileptic scale fit over the excitement of people he saw only two hours ago returning down the driveway (who am I to judge?). Leaves have been traipsed in through the door and dirt (we’ll say dirt. Please be dirt. Tell me it’s just dirt!!) on the bottom of shoes. Eenie is refusing to go and do a wee despite the hours stretching between when he last went, and now. Meenie is suggesting she might like to do some “ass and crahps” (read: arts and crafts) (read: epic mess for me to clean up later)(read: not doing it). Disputes are underway over which red block (that looks exactly like 147 other red blocks we own) belongs to who. Orders are being taken for what they’d like to have for dinner (or more accurately what they don’t want; anything I’ve got), because apparently I’m running a restaurant. Actually we’ll say roadhouse diner. My cooking does not a restaurant make. In short, my creepy quiet house is no longer.
All that being said however.
Me time is great. Uncommon. Welcome. Needed. Sometimes much needed. Sometimes very much needed.
But mum-me time? It ain’t half bad.
Happy Vegemitey hands on your white shirt day. Happy accidental duplo block to the eye day. Happy vomit on your shoulder day. Happy mummy can I watch that show? What show? The one with the thingy. What thingy? I don’t know mummy. I’m not sure what show you mean darling. Neither am I….but mummy can I please watch that show? day.
Happy your kids are more beautiful than anyone else’s because they’re yours day.
Happy Mother’s day, you lot.