Thursday, 20 October 2011


Lately, my three year old has become rather obsessed with death. Thankfully, there's no immediate catalyst for this, so Im putting it down to a 'Developmental Stage' - along with his desire to be naked whenever possible - and hoping itll pass. Please feel free to reassure me...

Trouble is, I'm finding it quite a difficult one to manage, especially publicly. And Im not quite sure of any of the right answers ('Will Great Grandma be staying in heaven overnight mummy?' 'Ummm....'). On a recent walk to his nursery, I asked after one of the staff I hadnt seen much of lately. 'Wheres Melissa at the moment? I said, 'I havent seen her for ages. Casually, whilst taking on a particularly bumpy part of pavement with his scooter, he replied, 'Oh, she just, erdied.

Now, had this been the case, Im fairly sure that nursery parents would have been pulled aside to be informed, or at the very least it would have made the monthly newsletter. So this little gem of twisted fiction is merely a product of (what I thought was) his pure, angelic mind. Shit. Should I worry? Is it normal? Should I just have another glass of wine...?

The thing is, because abstract concepts are so difficult to convey to this age, The Husband and I have come up with some slightly more fluffy explanations than Six Feet Under. So perhaps wrongly, when our children lost their Great Grandma earlier this year, we said she'd gone to live in the clouds along with their other Great Grandparents. Our son thinks this is rather fantastic. I think he genuinely believes we might pass them next time were on an Easyjet flight and see them all joyfully having a tea party somewhere above The Alps.

The positive thing (I think?!) is that it’s not something he is frightened of, or truly understands. It’s just another concept to explore and be interested in. The macabre fascination continues through to stories and pictures. Yesterday he and a friend were drawing at the table. Sweet. I went over to look. 'Thats a nice picture', I said to my son, noticing a tall tree and something that resembled a duck. The tree is about to fall over and squash the duck he said proudly. OkaaaaaaayWondering if I might have more luck with his friend, I commented, 'Wow - that's good, is it a sheep? No, its a dead dog came the reply. Oh, isnt he asleep? No, hes dead'. Right...

Well, at least I can rest in peace in the knowledge that hes not alone. So for now, I WILL have that glass of wine. And perhaps start saving for therapy, just in case.

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

ENGLAND: Nil Points

A very good friend of mine and I have just returned from a weekend in Paris. I should point out this is absolutely NOT usual behaviour. It is precisely BECAUSE of usual behaviour (mainly on the part of our four under fours) that we got drunk one night and spontaneously booked an Easyjet flight and a tiny cupboard in Le Marais, before we could sober up and return to being vaguely sensible.

Keen to make the most of Vin Rouge time and the least of baggage claim boredom, we decided to take hand luggage only. A bonne idée until both bags set off the infrared scanners at security due to the sheer volume of vanity products. It’s a rude awakening to be given a small see-through bag and politely told you can only take what fits into it. Having to publically prioritise your beauty products is quite a challenge I can tell you, especially when you’re off to Paris of all places and will require at least an inch of foundation to get from bleak to chic. I could see the panic in my friend’s face as she had to question on the spot whether Touché Éclat should outrank Beauty Flash Balm.

Having spent a wicked 48 hours in a blur of cigarettes, sequins and ridiculously beautiful people, I have returned to a sickness bug. My daughter pretty much greeted me by vomiting at my (fabulous) heels and has whined ‘Mu…mm…y’ ever since, as if to provide a constant reminder of my role lest I had forgotten somewhere over the English Channel.  

Since there’s no chance of setting foot outside the front door, I have broken all my own rules and told the kids they can do what they want, learning in the ensuing half hour that ‘iPad’ is a key part of my daughter’s vocabulary – at 22 months - and my four year old liberally uses Google as a verb. Oh shit.

I have spent the afternoon making rounds of dry toast, stroking heads, attempting to catch vomit in various receptacles and wanting to punch Mr fucking Tumble. I’ve got a good mind to go and put my sequins back on.