Monday, 6 July 2009

Children, Chaos and Caffeine


Children are a curious hybrid of emotional triggers aren't they ? Nothing can prepare you for motherhood, on one hand you love them with an intensity so fierce it's impossible to quantify, you would take a bullet for them. Hell, even the densest of dogs will fight to the death for her pups, and not have a clue why. It's instinct. On the other hand sometimes, just sometimes, you wish they would go away and never come back. I met my friend P for lunch a couple of weeks ago, ( he's a former lover and it's one of those mad situations where the whole "let's just be friends" thing has soooo worked for us. )

I issued the standard warning on the way into the restaurant ; "I know we're not The Waltons but I beg you, feckin' behave." To be fair to my 8 year old Princess, she managed well for the first 9 minutes. After that she decided that the conversation was becoming decidedly boring since it didn't have anything to do with Hannah Montana and began to fidget and wriggle about in between heavy sighs and shrugging of shoulders that would have put the Glasgow Acting Academy to shame. Rather gamely I thought, P offered her his wallet to "play" with. After all, what female doesn't enjoy a root and a nosey ?

She had a root through his cards and then discovered his photos. Out they came one by one until she held one up and asked "Who's that ?" He replied ; "That's my late wife." I was really quite touched when she said to him, "That's not very fair on you, is it ?" We all had a moment where we looked at the floor and went quiet. In a very soft voice he said - "No, I don't suppose it is". After a considerable period of thought she came back with - "What time was she supposed to be here at ?"

Ground open up and swallow me, sooner rather than later please.

I was thinking this week about how as much as I whinge about my family and the daily hassles and strains I have, I really couldn't wish for anything better. I've come to the conclusion that I thrive on chaos. Many years ago when I left the family home I was working for an agency and I rented a beautiful apartment in the city centre. I thought I had it all, money, a nice place, a great lifestyle. I kept the apartment absolutely immaculate and if I went out in the morning leaving one cup in the sink, that's exactly how it was on my return. I thought I had it all, but on reflection, I had nothing and was miserable and very lonely.

Now when I come home there are many faces to greet me, some furry and some not, and they all need my attention RIGHT NOW. So as much as I complain about our morning routine - "MUM, the cat's eating my Frosties again .... ", the truth is I wouldn't change it for the world and I really enjoy the madness of it all. I also enjoy that in spite of the fact I have two queen sized beds in my apartment and two full length sofas, EVERYONE ends up in my bed. My princess, my big cat and my kitten, all of whom manage to sleep like starfish. Still, I treasure my two inches of quilt.

Speaking of appreciating chaos, I have about 18 hours of study and writing to do for an assignment which is to be submitted by midnight on Tuesday 7th. As per usual I have left the main body of work until the last minute, so Monday and Tuesday for me will be a haze of diet coke and coffee, but I know I'll get through it and get it in on time. Luckily for me I am ( and always have been ) the Queen of cram, so caffeine and I are old pals.

Yours in nervous jitters and tics,

LL x

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