21 September 2009

The Positions One Finds Oneself In

Tonight I looked after the kids on my own -- David went rock climbing after work -- and they just went NUTS. Driving home: OK. Dinner (during the drive): OK. Checking the mailbox (a ritual they love): OK. Anya was thrilled to receive a letter from me and we duly headed inside to open it.

It was after this that the trouble began. Or maybe slightly before this, because I noticed it was about to rain, and detoured briefly to take some laundry off the line. Callum didn't like this, because when he is reunited with me after a few hours apart, he needs to be carried or sit in my lap for a LONG time before he is topped up again and happy to wander out of close physical contact with me.

But I grabbed the laundry pretty quickly, and got him to hold it while I held him; this was OK. We went inside and somehow or another, instead of getting Callum undressed and into a bath, this degenerated into a nude roly-poly on the kitchen floor. First, Anya got me to draw her a picture (while Callum climbed all over me and interfered as best he could) which she started colouring in while I undressed Callum. He kept saying, "No bath! No bath!" so the undressing happened in stages, in between crawling between my legs, hiding behind me and pretending to pop out, then ultimately, climbing on my back and yelling "NEIGH!" (by which time he was fully nude).

Anya found this too good an idea to resist, so then there was some pushing and shoving and wailing about whose turn it was to ride up top. I found it completely ludicrous to be hunched over on all fours, while one nude little boy screamed and one fully dressed little girl sobbed... (I eventually solved it by giving them each one more turn, then briskly saying it was BATHTIME NOW.)

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