Driving Me to Junk Food

I found this blog entry for last week that I forgot to hit ‘publish’ on. I’m having real problems with the photo editor, so they’ll follow later. Hopefully… Ha! Google Chrome to the rescue; IE9 is rubbish. ANYway…

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4th October 2013
Thursday. Swimming Day. Pass me the ear defenders…

Today didn’t start well – Foster Cat left The Boss a big stinking present in the hall for him to clear up before work. I’ve not been sleeping (various combinations of cats and kids needing my attention) and have been pretty much living in the car this week (additional trips to schools and vets beyond the usual), so am a fair bit behind in things like clean floors and ironed uniforms. In a surge of guilt, I skip breakfast to iron Maxi and Midi’s uniforms. Five minutes later, they’re rolling around on the floor licking each others faces and my work is wasted. Then they start to bite and hit each other. The place stinks of cat poo, sour milk and centuries of tobacco smoke and it’s making me feel ill. I have a headache. And a cold starting. I suggest to the kids that we all get into the car early this morning for a change so that I can drive them to the children’s home instead of school. They look at me defiantly then continue screaming louder than me.

The day doesn’t get any better – someone nicks my towel at the swimming pool. A nice member of staff offers to phone the school whose pupils were coming out of the pool as we were going in. I logically point out that if someone honestly thought that the towel was theirs, then it wouldn’t occur to them to later on check. And if they stole it? Well, they’d hardly hand it back, would they? I try to console myself with the thought that the towel-nicker had used my minging week-old towel to dry themselves (it was going to go straight in the washing machine after swimming), but it was cold comfort: I have to use Mini’s sopping wet towel to dry myself. Pretty pointlessly, though, because my jeans legs were soaked from the rain this morning and are soggy up to the knees.

Then Mini has a meltdown in the changing room about wearing trousers: “I’m not wearing trousers! Hate them! Hate them!” This is after screaming the place down because I dared to insist that she shower after swimming. I’d even brought along a plastic jug to minimise the stress. I want to cry or at least run away, but I honestly fear that if I put a foot outside the (ridiculously small) cubicle that I really will run, and keep on running, never to return. Mini demands a dress. Right now. I suggests she cast her own magic spell to conjure one up. She shrieks like a banshee in fury and stamps her foot (splash. More wet clothes). I give her an ultimatum: trousers or no trousers, her choice. She choses none and legs it to the car wearing her wellies, coat, teeshirt and pants. Mini 1 Mummy 0.

Any surprise that I’ve bought pizza for dinner tonight?!

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Mummy gets her own back by dressing them like this. In public. Ha!

Mummy gets her own back by dressing them like this. In public. Ha!

Actually that day got better: both Maxi and Midi had to go and get their swimming ability assessed so that they can go on the correct waiting list for lessons. Despite not swimming since June, they had a hoot: the instructor established an easy rapport with them. I’d assessed them as Level 1 and Level 4, based on the Learning Objectives of the swimming blocks. The professional assessed them as Level 2 and Level 5. They were delighted. It was completely irrational of me to feel pride that they’d done so well, but I did anyway.

And that pizza? Bloody gorgeous! Especially with the half bottle of red wine I plunged into.

Grommets Aftermath

Tues 25 Sep

Last time I had a spare 5 minutes to blog (oh don’t… it really is mental just now; I dream about being able to pee on my own without a toddler or child clinging to me) I wrote about Midi Minx getting her grommets.  Originally I’d intended to keep her off school for a day or maybe 2, but she wanted to go back the next day, the surgeon said it was fine, and she’s smack-bang in the middle of learning a new phonic a day.  So I let her go.  Biiiiiig mistake…

I’d sent her in to school with reinforced instructions that if she felt too tired or had any pain, she was to tell her teacher to phone me.  She’d breezily brushed aside my warnings and skipped in to school.  I picked up a totally different child at 2.35pm.  As soon as she saw me, she burst into tears and limped over, into my arms.

Now, Midi is not a hysterical or overly-sensitive little soul.  She’s roughty-toughty, grab-the-world-by-the-scruff-of-the-neck-and-laugh-at-it kind of person.  I’ve not seen her cry for a reason other than physical pain for many months.  I asked what was wrong, and it all came tumbling out:

“I felt so LONELY!” she sobbed.  “My buddy ignored me again.  No one wanted to play with me!”

What about your best friend, X?  “She wasn’t there!”

What about your friend, Y?  “He was asleep on his desk!” she wailed.

How about Z and A?  You like to play with them.  “They just stuck their tongues out at me and wouldn’t let me play too!”

B & C?  “They only wanted to play together and didn’t want to play with a girl!”

You were honestly lonely?  Absolutely no-one wanted to play with you?  “No.  And everyone was shouting and it was too loud!”

didymos indio cypress

She wanted to snuggle into my neck instead of rolling out pastry? She *definitely* wasn’t herself.

If I’d thought more, I could have anticipated that the terrible weather indicated an indoor playtime, which would be noisy as hell.  Yay, her ears are obviously working, but oh my God, the heartache when your gregarious, funny little girl cries over being left out and feeling lonely.

I figured it was as much to do with being tired and the after-effects of the anaesthetic as much as anything else.  Oh, and a big dose of the fact that her Buddy is bloody useless and has been all month – Midi worships her, but the older girl will only say hello if an adult is nearby, won’t play with Midi, and consistently isn’t there when Midi actually needs her.  I’ve told Midi that she’s a rubbish buddy and to play with other P1 kids.  But Midi loves her.

I think it also doesn’t help that her teacher “forgot” why Midi was off yesterday, claiming that she was about to report her absence before she remembered.  So me telling her about the op a month before verbally, and again in writing 10 days before, was useless.  And requesting in advance a bit of the work she’d miss, so we could work on it at home the weekend before the op, was totally pointless and a waste of my time.  As a result Midi had to catch up on 2 days’ work when she felt tired and emotional.  Great.  Just what I was trying to avoid.  Next time I’ll save myself the hour of writing multiple letters to teachers and administrator, save on paper and ink, and just not give a stuff, shall I?

Plated mince pie with rich shortcrust pastry… you can almost smell the thick, oniony gravy from here!

Luckily I’d taken the car to pick the girls up from school in case Midi was tired.  She cried quietly in the back the whole way home.  I had a private few tears myself.  When my attempts to jolly her out of her heart-ache failed, I did what I had to do: put her on my back in the sling and made us all some serious comfort food.  It did make everything a little brighter in that 4 year old world of hers.

Edited: I removed the initials D, S, M, another M, and another 2 single initial letters and replaced them with A, B, C, X, Y and Z.  I hope that makes it clearer…