Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Heading South

Yesterday, I dreamed of getting in the car and just heading south. Just away. Everything was driving me loco. I was trapped within the walls of my house, and within the aching bones of my own body. There was clutter and mess in every corner. The baby was screaming to be picked up and my body was screaming at me to put her down. Every time I asked Ted if he wanted to do something, he shouted 'No!'

I have to conquer this mood, I thought. I know! I'll get out the painting stuff and turn this shit around. It was a terrible, masochistic self-sabotaging spiral. Instead of putting Hi-5 Hey Presto! on, giving Ted the remote and teaching him where the 'repeat' button was, I created a sick fantasy and ignored the painful reality.



To wit:

(Sick Fantasy) Teddy will sit quietly, making finger-painting butterflies and caterpillars from instructions in a book.

(Painful Reality) Teddy is mired in a  difficult developmental stage where he must differentiate himself from his mother by doing his own thing, and not what she wants him to do. This means that when I give him paper to paint on, he prefers the table, the baby and his own body as the canvas.  I KNOW THIS ALREADY.

(Sick Fantasy) The fifteen minutes I spent setting up the activity will pay off in at least half an hour of creative good fun.
(Painful Reality) 5 minutes. Tops.

(Sick Fantasy) Making the baby four colours worth of yoghurt pain on her high chair tray will keep her amused and happy for at least half an hour, and not tugging at my ankles, crying to be picked up.
(Painful Reality) 5 minutes. Tops.

(Sick Fantasy) A session of creative, calm painting together in the sunshine will turn my frown upside down and re-bond me with what I love about staying home with pre-schoolers.
(Painful Reality) No. No. No. Just no. And starting the whole process by muttering under my breath 'I really do not have time for this shit today' is, for future reference, an important marker that I am not in the spirit of the thing.

Today, today was better, as today often is after a corker of a crappy yesterday. It's a matter of resigning oneself to the lunacy sometimes. And a good nights sleep. And making a new chart that rewards Mr Happy as opposed to Mr No. And embracing the small things - like our Ebay triumph outdoor table setting, which will be so wonderful this summer, but  dangerous to our already sloppy morning routine. Here we are christening it on Monday morning. Ivy's hair looks totally deadlocked, and we are undoubtedly about to fight-wrestle a comb through it. Mine does too, but I probably won't bother with the comb. Georgie looks grumpy. She probably wants more food. Ted's face is covered in black designs. Ivy drew on him on Saturday, and I can't get the paint off. Later Monday morning, Ted went like this to swimming, where once his shirt was off he also sported a large tattoo on his back that read 'I LOVE YOU TEDDY'. 


And now I am due for a date with Keith in the big bed, with a cup of tea, the electric blanket, and Curb Your Enthusiasm, season 8. So life still holds many pleasures. I only hope that tomorrow I will be dealing with Mr Happy. (And I wish you the same.)

6 comments:

  1. Only found your blog the other day and I have already laughed so hard a little pee escaped...Ah, it's SO good to know that I'm not the only one...

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    1. Hi Sea Bee. So glad you found me, and happy that you've recognised you'rte not the only one struggling with domestic life, and low-level incontinence. x

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  2. That is all so true!! I sometimes live in that fantasy - trying to create some kind of perfect, crafty, waldorfy bubble around my bunch, which they take great pride in popping. Here's to imperfection, electric blankets and DVD's in bed!
    Cheers, Lou x

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    1. But you have find the pleasure in the trying right Lou? Cheers to you too. x

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  3. yeah, f*cking painting bloody shits me. M is better now with it but i remember how long it took to set it up get it all out for her to walk away covered in paint after 5 mins!! SO ANNOYING- thank god for ABC kids I tell ya.
    we have that EXACT table setting!

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  4. Love it Cath! One day, in real life, we will sit and drink a cup of tea at one of them together. Great Ebay buy. xx Now go and have a lie down please.

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Thanks for talking to me. I don't got cooties. Oh, except for when I got cooties.