Project Awesome

Making my life more awesome

A bedtime in the life of…

on June 8, 2013

If you were making a film of my life, tonight’s bathtime would be used to illustrate the frustration and social isolation of single mothers.  Wrestling with furious children who do not want to be bathed, Big Girl lying on the floor screaming that she “WANTS TO DO BALLET” rather than get in the bath, and then biting me because I tried to take her dress off, and then engaging in a kicking, thrashing tantrum because I put her in the bath and she “WANTED TO GET IN HERSELF”, which made Small Girl cry because she doesn’t really like being kicked.  Then lifting Big Girl out, at which point she runs away, presumably to DO BALLET, and then comes back and insists on getting in the bath herself, but she’s too furious and exhausted to do it, so I have to help her while we both pretend, precariously, that I’m not helping her at all.  And I wonder if someone is going to report the sound of someone being slapped to social services, and if they’ll believe that I was actually the slappee rather than the slapper.  And then exploring the idea that teeth must be cleaned, but that there are choices about where they might be cleaned (oh, always choices).  Then both girls want carrying, first, into the bedroom, and lie on the floor crying.  So I decide to carry the smallest one first and then go back for the biggest one.  But by the time I’ve got back to Big Girl, Small Girl has run back behind me and is crying furiously.  And juxtaposed with this is the soundtrack, my neighbours’ laughter as they barbecue and drink wine and sit in the warm evening sun, the evening I could be having if I wasn’t a pitiable single parent…

Except it’s not really like that.  We’ve had a lovely day celebrating Small Girl’s second birthday – we’ve been to the park and had a picnic with friends and family and played in the fountains and on the swings and had ice-cream and cake and been on the little train that goes round the park.  And as (I hope) every parent knows, there is a direct correlation between the amount of fun small children have and the amount of tears they produce at the end of the event.  Add into this the fact that it wasn’t Big Girl’s birthday today, so she’s spent the whole day not getting presents, and the heat and excitement, and it was a recipe for a challenging bedtime.  But not because I’m a pitiable single parent.  Just because, well, that’s children…


As an addendum, I started writing this at 8.15 pm, when I thought I’d actually done really well.  Small Girl had fed to sleep immediately and Big Girl had had one story and a cuddle and climbed into bed.  About half way through writing the post, I had gone back up to Big Girl demanding a drink, and then she had continued to mess for some time.  Shortly after this Small Girl started crying and refused to go back to sleep, graduating through screaming with rage and into hysterical, unconsolable sobbing.  Two hours later I finally had both children in bed again, and came downstairs to finish my post and drink some cider.  I no longer have any idea if this post makes any sense at all as my brain has been eaten by worms.


One response to “A bedtime in the life of…

  1. Myn says:

    Sod! I have missed Small girl’s birthday. I could have sworn I had another week to get her present in the post…

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