This morning I awake some time just before 7am to the dulcet tones of the Little Mister singing and playing in his cot. I get him out of bed and noticed he’s wet through his nappy, PJs, sleeping bag, fitted sheet and through to the (thank goodness) mattress protector. I chuck everything in the wash immediately and replace his bedding with spares. Aah, nice and fresh.
The Little Mister drinks his milk without spilling it and it’s a very proud moment. It’s the little things, y’know?
I let him watch a little TV (oh the horror!) while I try to sort out the family budget. The mortgage has just come out, my car has something computery wrong with it and has to go in on Monday, and the Little Mister has his family birthday celebration coming, so it could look a little healthier. Oh, sh*t! I realise it’s the last day to renew the local council registration for our two dogs. Looks like a trip to the library is in order (that’s one of the local places you can sort that kind of sh*t out). I scoop up the Little Mister and we head out.
“Aw he’s so cute! Can I take him home?” asks the lovely customer service lady. She has given him a cute dinosaur stamp and he turns on the charm with his adorable (fake coy) smile and has already said ‘hi’ to her in a cheery manner (a couple of times). I can see how a mere mortal could be sucked in. Especially when he shows her the lion on his tee shirt and gives his best little toddler “rawr”.
“Are you sure you really want to take him home? Really?” I ask a little too eagerly.
After the dog regos are sorted out, I feel obligated to show the Little Mister the children’s books. I start to feel like one of those good mums. You know the ones. The ones who take their children to the library and stuff. Sure, I’m there with another agenda, but no-one else but me and the customer service lady knows that. In my mind I’m strutting about, like “Oh, yes. It’s me. At the library. I do like to give my son the best literary experiences. Oh, you know. It’s nothing. Just a part of the job.”
In reality, I’m all like, DON’T RUN AWAY! PLEASE DON’T DISASSEMBLE ALL OF THE LOAN PUZZLES BECAUSE MUMMY DOESN’T WANT TO PUT THEM ALL BACK TOGETHER BY HERSELF. OH, LOOK AT ALL THE FLIMSY PAPER PAGES IN THOSE BEAUTIFUL STORY BOOKS. YOU’RE GONNA RIP THEM IF WE TAKE THEM HOME. WE’RE NOT BORROWING THE YO GABBA GABBA DVD – MUMMY CAN ONLY HANDLE SO MUCH. COME BACK HERE!!
Don’t get me wrong, the Little Mister always has new books to read and we’ll read every day without fail. I just think of the library as a magical place where I never end up going haha.
Turns out, being a good mum that borrows books from the library (the card ones that aren’t so easy to rip into shreds and then present them proudly to mummy as if you’ve just given her the best present in the world that you made yourself with your own destructive little hands) isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Your child will be so in love with his little library finds that he will not want to be separated from them for anything and while you will have a smug, heartwarming hour reading them to him on the couch at home, while he nuzzles in and learns so much about what he’s ‘reading’, you’ll first experience him crying for the books in the car on the way home because he won’t let you put his seatbelt on in case he loses his grip. Then he’ll be crying for the books at nap time, crying for the books at lunch time, and because you let him borrow a Wiggles book, you’ll realise that when he points at each character in the book, you have no idea which Wiggle is named what. Stumped.
This afternoon the Little Mister awakes from a (too) short nap crying, all sad and a little too hot and bothered. He then won’t settle by himself so it’s couch cuddles until he feels a little more alive (I take pity on him and it’s the one time I’m guaranteed non squirmy/kicky/bouncy/flailing cuddles). I use this opportunity to serve up some lunch for him to consume in his high chair (which he oddly prefers to his booster seat) – grapes and cheese (his favourite) while I resist the urge to pair water crackers and a nice glass of vino with it (for me).
We spend the next half hour playing a fun little game called, Don’t Look at The Toddler or He’ll Cry.
I have to give sneaky little sideways glances to check if he’s eating and if he catches me, his bottom lip quivers and the snot flows freely. The cheese or grapes hang suspended in mid air just outside of his mouth as he bawls his eyes out. If I look away, order is restored immediately. Forget lovely meal time conversation. I’m not permitted to speak. I just sit and stare at the middle distance (and eventually my iPhone) trying not to laugh (I take a leap and assume laughing is out of the question too).
After we abandon lunch – yes, abandon – the Little Mister heads in the direction of his play room where he is unusually quiet. He’s in his favourite spot behind the IKEA children’s circus tent, where he goes for privacy when he has business he feels like doing in his nappy. I ask him in a gentle, positive tone, “Little Mister, have you done a poo?”
He runs away. I find him playing so nicely by himself. He’s set up camp on one of his dad’s singlets* (stolen from the clothes horse), with a plush giraffe and a story book. He’s obviously being extra peaceful and lovely to avoid any suspicion – pretty transparent, really. Pity about the smell giving it away. Nice try, little buddy.
Afternoon snack time means a little peace for me. I hand the Little Mister a yoghurt squeezie and he seems to be having a lovely time sucking that dairy goodness down. I keep an eye on him from across the room as I field a phone call from Mr Unprepared who has finished work. I answer, “Hello, Tactical Response Group – where can I direct your call?”
In the five seconds that I take to blink and collect myself, the Little Mister is pointing and gesturing. I look. Yoghurt is splattered all over the floor, with just a little artistic splash over the couch for extra effect. I hand the Little Mister a bunch of tissues (a blogger who shall remain nameless forgot to buy paper towels yesterday) and we both get to wiping. The Little Mister gives up half way and of course, good old mum finishes the job.
Seconds later, he’s balancing on his little chair and peering over a divider wall with an “I’ve got an idea and I’m not afraid to make bad choices” look on his face…
What is it they say about toddlers being like terrorists or dictators? I wouldn’t know. *snooty face* I’m too busy taking my child to the library.
All I know is that it’s my job and I’ll do it all over again tomorrow! I also have about a million things I would like to add to my resumé when I return to paid work. Some of which include…
- Tactical Response Negotiator
- Advertising Executive (I have to sell almost every task we do to the Little Mister before we can perform said task – creativity and knowing your demographic are a must)
- Crime Scene Investigator (putting evidence together to figure out what’s gone wrong and who’s done it)
What would you like to add to your resumé to reflect your experience as a parent? How has your day been?
*I love the idea of Mr Unprepared reading this blog post after the fact and thinking, EW MY SINGLET WAS A TEMPORARY RESTING PLACE FOR MY SON’S STINKY BOTTOM. Bonus points if he’s wearing it at the time hahaha.