one hundred and seventy two

 

The best kind of dinners are the ones you don’t have to think about, plan, shop for or cook. The best kind of phone calls are the ones you receive from your teenage daughter whilst you are still at lunch at 4pm telling you her and her friend are shopping for dinner and will be cooking too. I am grateful for unexpected phone calls, unusually selfless gestures and spontaneous treats. But next time, I’m not offering to wash up. I should have just left it at thank you.

mother

I ran away today. Day one and I ran away. From my kids. Kate is feeling ill and emotional and just generally needy and annoying and moody too. Jem wants to know what’s for breakfast after she turned down an offer to join B and I for brekkie downstairs. And she’s moody too. And they’re both bloody messy. And just there. Shit and its day one of school holidays. And I just didn’t feel like dealing with them today. I love my kids so much but I think I love them even more when they are at school. And if you are this far with me you know a lot about me and my family and the love we share and my gratitude for them and the characters that they are. But have I ever admitted that I never wanted them? Well, never wanted kids. My plan was not to get married, never to have kids and focus only on me and my career. My plan. Me. In Control. Then I fell in love. And we loved being the two of us. But then we decided at some point that something was lacking, not with us but just lacking and at 31 the kiddy thing started. I offered 6 weeks of myself. Then I was back at work. Well, that never happened either. I did go back, but later and as a very different person, with a very different view on the world. The thing about kids is suddenly you realise you are no longer in control. Not that I ever was, but I loved the illusion of it. So, this morning, I left. Because I could. Just for a moment. And I do love my kids. And I am grateful for them. More than anything in the world. But then, you knew that.

one hundred and fifty two

 

I am grateful for a warm cheek nuzzle. Not sure if nuzzle’s a word or if it captures that moment every morning when I wake Jem with a kiss, squishing my lips and face into her warm from sleep cheek, inhaling her smell. A cheek nuzzle. It is the best time of the day for me, and I am very grateful I get to do it every morning. And that I get a nuzzle back. Kate gets a cheek nuzzle too, and a chuckle cos she really doesn’t like it anymore, now she’s a teenager and hates anybody who deigns to wake her. So I am so very grateful for the cheek nuzzle with Jem moment. Long may it last.

bugger that

We had an interesting moment yesterday. Well, I thought it was. It interests me how subtly the girls are changing. Kate had a secondary music recital thing … we as parents were asked to bring something along for afternoon tea. Because I always was the woman in “I don’t know how she does it“, Alison Pearson’s book, not the movie, cos I loved the book and hated the movie, except I never pretended my shop bought cakes and cookies and things were homemade (I never had enough time and quite frankly didn’t give a damn). Anyway, so I thought I would make something for Kate to take (not sure whether to absolve my latent guilt or because I’m bored) … and I thought I would do those fab cheese puffs from Lynn’s mom that both my girls love. Kate was horrified. Why are we taking anything? We’ll be the only ones. And anyway why can’t you just buy a packet of biscuits? And if you (must) make something why does it have to be something South African with melted bovril (didn’t have marmite, Lynn) and butter drizzled over fabulously crisp cheese scones with a soft melted cheesy centre.  I mean, nobody here knows bovril. It will be weird. Ergo I will be weird. I will be noticed. I will stand out and god forbid that happens. So, I settled on shop bought donuts, which I did arrange on a lovely muted 70’s green serviette and serving platter. Thank god for the other mum who brought the dainty tray of cupcakes or else I would have been the only one and then could you imagine how mortified my daughter would have been. What is with that? Is it a secondary we’re so cool thing, or is it a “don’t stand out” australian thing or is it a combination?? And why does nobody bring anything in? Is it just a we couldn’t be bothered who really cares kind of thing? Well, stuff it, we will still bring in our offerings, no matter how depleted. Because that’s us. And damn my girls need to be proud to stand up. Even if they are the only ones. And anyway, my donuts were eaten within seconds.

one hundred and six

 

Between homework, facebook, instagram, tumblr, skype I never ever get a look in after dinner these days. So today I’m grateful for an unexpected treat, Kate cuddling up to me on the couch. And no, it’s not because Bondi Rescue came on as she wandered past.  Oh, ok it might be. Anyway who cares, I’ll gratefully take what I get.