4:30pm– Pick up from nursery. I’ve missed him so much today it’s as though I left for work without my kidneys. Sometimes I fantasize about quitting work in a Bridget Jones-esque spectacle and marching home for big sloppy toddler kisses.
4:35pm– Kiss mummy? Maybe not? Ok, ummm hug mummy? …OR just hit mummy over the head with a plastic saucepan. Fine.
4:40pm– The car is in the other direction, love.
4:50pm– No, that’s enough; we can’t go into that stranger’s house. Let’s go to the car.
5:00pm– There are doggies and kittens and bikes and biscuits in the car! Let’s go find them!!!
5:15pm– We arrive home after a SCREAMING COMMUTE due to toddler realisation that no bicycles are in fact within the vehicle. Mummy is a big fat liar. We HATE Mummy.
5:30pm-Dinner time! My enthusiasm wanes with each additional food cooked, offered and invariably refused. So much food has been thrown about that the kitchen looks like a Vitamix advert where someone forgot to put the lid on.
I feel my belly fold over my skirt and think with disdain about how my squidgy bits are mostly due to leftover toddler scraps and not due to anything worthwhile like steak, wine or chocolate souffles. Hurumph.
6:00pm– Giving up on the traditional dining experience. Instead, I plonk him in front of “My Pet and Me” and hope it distracts him from the peanut butter covered carrots being slyly spooned into his mouth… got you now you little freak of nature!!! I laugh wickedly.
6:30pm– Thirty minutes late for bath time. Routine schmoutine. No sign of his obligatory pre-bath poop; I proceed with caution.
6:35pm: Get in the bath please. No it’s not too hot love. NO the dog can’t come in. NOOOOO please don’t throw my phone in the bath, again.
6:40pm: OK, it’s cute and all, but you can’t just keep flushing the toilet and saying “bye bye!” to the water (genuinely starting to feel bad for the environment).
6:45pm: Flippin ‘eck. GET. IN. THE. BATH. (Sudden urge to run downstairs to fetch tub of cream cheese and large spoon.)
6:50pm: Strip down and get in the dang thing myself thinking that I can trick him into believing that bathing is a recreational activity and not one with a purpose. He falls for it! More wicked laughter.
7:00pm: He’s supposed to be asleep by now but WHO CARES we are having a great time in the bath together! This is what I’ve been longing for! God I love him. He is playing so cleverly and not just bossing me around for the first time all day. Awe, how cute, he is sitting on my lap. Oh wait….waaaaait…. Is he pooping?
(Lucky for you I am omitting events between 7:03-7:05pm. You’re welcome.)
7:05pm: Everything is OK. I am OK. I am….fine. REALLY, GENUINELY, LOVING THIS.
7:10pm: “Reading on Mummy’s lap” has turned into a literary tornado. With every one book I pick off the floor, another three are whooshing into the air or being “reorganized” into clothing drawers, down the stairs, or behind the sofa. Eventually I put a firm stop to this malarkey, only to once again find myself being bopped over the head.
7:20pm. I AM NOT OK. Tonight has been a disaster. I am so terrible at this. I’m falling apart after a few bloody hours, how could I ever be a stay at home mum? What the hell is wrong with me!? Legs and arms are flailing, his and mine.
7:25pm. In a panic, I collect all the elephant related objects in the room and start to make elephant noises. All at once, he smiles. Awe, look at those dimples. Did he have those before?
He picks a Peppa Pig book off the pile on the floor and places it gingerly back onto the bookshelf.
7:30pm. I am singing nursery rhymes and he is growing heavier with each verse. He lifts his head off my shoulder and puts his nose to mine. I am given the first bit of quality eye contact all day, so close up that he is almost cross eyed, and with a wide open mouth he plants a large, slippery, deliberate kiss on my lips.
He is lowered into his cot (no tears), covered with a blanket (no tears), and blown one final kiss, to which he actually smiles, kisses his hand, and waves his hand in the air, as if to throw it back.
As I close the nursery door I lean onto the door frame, clutch my chest with both hands, and exhale.
I love him so much.
What a great evening. ♥