Forgot you had another kid? I’ve done it. Have you?
It’s Friday night.
You and your husband have sat down, about to watch the telly, the one show you both like; the only one where you can sit side by side focusing on the same thing. The same laughs, the same traumas, the same intrigues. You rarely watch TV because usually you’re too busy, but you’ll make an exception tonight.
You’re glad to sit down.
Your week’s been all about getting to work, doing work, coming home from work, cooking family dinner, clearing up after family dinner, showering and pyjama-ing one kid, then nagging then reading to the other. It’s life in the trenches.
Silence from upstairs. In a couple of hours you’ll probably hear the banging and thumping then you’ll go up to see what the problem is. But for now, silence.
The oasis of shared peace in front of the telly draws you down and you look over at him thinking, oh to do this more often!
Waiting for the wails from upstairs, looking at the clock, worrying whether you have the volume too loud, you sigh and think that one day you’ll possibly miss the full-on-ness, she won’t be this small forever and you’ll miss it sorely, but for now, it’s hard keeping your sanity through it all.
The telly drones on, enticing your attention away. You stop worrying about the noise, knowing that if she wakes, you might be able to persuade your husband to go up and see what’s up. Really, you don’t have it so hard. Stop whining.
The show is over. You glance at the clock. As your eye scrapes the room, through the glass doors of the conservatory, you spot a huddled shape in the next room in the glow of a flickering green light.
Crap! It’s your older kid! X-boxing! He’s still up and you forgot! You completely forgot about him! Flying belly-on-the-ground low under the radar, putting off bed-time, very, very successfully. So successfully you’re secretly impressed by his deviousness.
You sigh. Life in the trenches is full of battles. Getting him to bed is just another one. But you’ll win it. You always do.