Saturday, 17 May 2014

Where Does the Time Go?

I don't know about you, but since I became a parent, I spend virtually every day spouting dramatic, over-emphasised cliches. And I fully know they're cliches. Like, as I'm saying them. But that just makes me mean them all the more. It's very distressing.

Let me share with you some of my favourites:
  • Because I said so
  • Let's just wait and see
  • You're going to break your neck
  • Would you jump off a cliff if your friends told you to?
  • How many times do I have to tell you?

Those naughty cliches just slip out . . .

Painful, aren't they? But the ones that really stand out for me are the ones I say to other people about my kids. Things like 'They're growing up so fast' and 'Where does the time go?' and I find they're all related to how undeniably quickly my children are growing up.

Like most parents, I can see the exquisite beauty in watching my children grow. Seeing Big Tot climb all the way up to the top of a tree without my assistance makes every tantrum he's ever thrown at me utterly worthwhile. And knowing that Little Tot can charm man, woman or beast with his pleases and thank yous and fluttering eyelashes is enough to make any mother proud. But why do they have to do it all so damn quickly?

Next week Little Tot will be three years old. Three. I mean, that means I probably have to throw out that cute stripey babygrow now.

And then a mere two weeks later, Big Tot will be six. Six I tell you! What am I supposed to do with a six year old?

At least I'm being distracted by the planning of the birthday parties. I'm sorry, did I say 'distracted'? Let's change that to 'demented'. Despite their combined total of just nine years on this planet, my Tots seem to have got the entire birthday party situation sussed. Even the not-yet-three-year-old is demanding a Batman theme and cupcakes and games and appears to be inviting half of the townsfolk to his party with his aforementioned impeccable manners / eyelashes combo.

Will I be able to create something like this?

And Big Tot? Well, despite firm warnings from me not to go telling everyone at school about his party on account of the fact that we could only ask six children from his class because he has twenty seven friends from outside of school already coming (yes, twenty seven), he went bounding into school that day, brandishing a fistful of invitations and shouting, "Everybody, I've got the invitations for my party! It's going to be brilliant! Come and see!" What else could I do but hide my head in my hands and keen softly?

But I have to admit, there is a part of me that loves all of this. I like the idea of an old-fashioned at-home party as opposed to a stint at the local soft play centre. I like the thought of playing host to a group of energetic young things and giving them fun things to do and see and eat. As long as the sun shines so we can use the garden. As long as some of the parents stick around to help. As long as there's enough cake. As long as there's no fighting or crying or vomiting. I mean, is that unreasonable?


Go well,


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