It is Day 11 of school holidays and I'm ready to return to full time work in another country, another time zone with no phone/email/smoke signal distance from the hatchlings. Not that I'm counting the days. But I am.
School finished four days before Christmas, and from the moment the school bell rang and Ella exited the school, I was faced with an 11 year old saying she would be soooooo bored if she didn't have anyone to be with. "I'm someone to be with," I had said. "Nooooo. I mean a real person. Someone fun. Someone interesting."
Being the imaginary, boring and dull parent that I am, and remembering the state of my house that resembled a hard-rubbish collection that was not fit for human or rodent, I had said 'No' to entertaining extras that day. Ella explained to her friend standing with her that I 'don't try' to keep the house clean (Hello - in earshot) and that it makes me 'feel uncomfortable' (still here, listening) when people come over and I haven't tidied. Her friend turned to me and said, "That's ok, really. I don't mind if you have a dirty house. You have too many children to keep it clean."
Ok, 1: It's not dirty, per se, it's untidy. Distinct difference.
2: I don't have too many children, per se, I have five
overindulged children who need to pull their heads
from their bums and help out more.
and c: I don't care. You're not coming over. Period.
I know of families with one child who have a housekeeper or a cleaner who comes in once a week. I'd love that, but I'd be more stressed the day before he or she came, desperately cleaning the house from top to bottom so he or she wouldn't thinking we're pigs. Yesterday, a good friend came over and caught me by surprise when he walked in, stepping carefully over the toys, dress-ups, bits of toast, pencils and playdough to get to my kitchen. I accept full responsibility for my kitchen's condition. All I could do was hold my hands to my head, anxiety fluttering in my chest, and hope - no prayed - that he wouldn't need the bathroom. My husband, Tim, recognised the panic in me, and placed a reassuring hand on my shoulder. This will take me weeks to get over. Pathetic - I know, but that's me.
Being the imaginary, boring and dull parent that I am, I was told again today that it was soooo boring here, with nothing to do and nobody to do something with. Ella slumped over the table and sighed, "You don't know how boring the school holidays can be, Mum."
Holy shit. This is going to be a very long five weeks.
29 days to go...
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