Monday, 27 June 2016

"Slummy-Single-Mummying It"

One of the last things the husband said to me yesterday before departing for his much anticipated eight day cycle adventure from hell (well, hell by my standards anyway...I get winded just pedalling my Brompton up the slight incline to our street) was this: "Remember, it's all about survival. Just give them what they want and make it easy for yourself."

He was of course referring to the monsters and the creeping dread I've had about 'single parenting' whilst he's away. For him, a typical afternoon jaunt with the boys in tow almost invariably ends with a protracted solo visit to the pub after dropping them back home, shaking his head in defeat and muttering something like, "I wasn't cut out for this," as he legs it out the door to my plaintive, "Well I wasn't either!...Hey, when are you coming back? You are coming back?....Please come back..." In other words, he gets it. He knows that by day three I'm likely to start panic texting him in the Alps (where he's cycling a gazillion kilometres up and down mountains from Geneva, Switzerland across to Venice, Italy with one of his 'besties' - another like-minded MAMIL (middle aged man in lycra), demanding he return AT ONCE or will have to collect his offspring from various temporary foster homes upon his return.

Okay, so I'm sounding a wee bit dramatic as the boys are not exactly terrors per se, but when the planets align such that they ALL kick off at the same time, and I've not had much sleep, and Squit has wet not only his bed again but my bed as well (having snuck in for a cuddle in the middle of the night) and Dumpie has lost the power cord for his ipad (the only thing keeping him from staging an impromptu coup just for the fun of it) and Egg has just discovered a plastic Sainsbury's bag under Squit's bed containing a multitude of plastic pieces which in its previous form was a beloved limited edition Japanese speed cube...well, you get the picture.

Now to be fair, I must confess that for the next few days Egg is away on a school trip, so at least I'll only have the two to contend with. That means I don't have to wake and fall asleep to the persistent sound of lightning fast creaking cubes being relentlessly twisted into submission and can temporarily remove the not insignificant number of sweets and biscuits I've been forced to stash in my wardrobe (the most recent hiding place, for it changes weekly given Egg is a renowned sugar junkie and if left to his own devices would devour every E-number in sight until falling into a diabetic coma). On the other hand, neither Dumps, Squit nor my good self are what you would call 'morning people.' Egg however can be reliably counted on to 'wake and cube' starting round about 6:30am daily. There is no danger of sleeping through an alarm on a school day when he's around. So to that end, I have about five alarms set for tomorrow morning and as a further precautionary measure am sleeping with my blinds open, so on the odd chance it's sunny I'll be woken with a jolt of migraine-inducing rays. Well that's the plan anyway.

Going to sign off now. Watching Coldplay close Glastonbury on the telly is proving rather distracting. The worst dressed man in Rock is currently doing some hardcore autistic piano bench rocking and incorporating some rather confusing high kicks into his stage choreography. If I didn't know any better I'd say that he was attempting the first ever Hokey Pokey on the infamous Pyramid Stage. He's sporting such a crazy grin that I can only assume that he's either on the best drugs ever or has recently joined Scientology and is having a major Theta moment.

Friday, 17 June 2016

"Which Came First...The Boy Or The Egg?"

Tomorrow my darling Egg turns twelve. And that people, is Egg-xactly how fast life goes.

One minute you're in agony in a hospital overlooking Big Ben as your husband feebly plays around with his new camera in the background (purchased with the sole purpose of catching such a life-changing moment - but instead proving such a giant distraction that his old school chum is almost allowed to charge right into the birthing room and witness your most vulnerable moment ever as a human being...but i digress).

The point is, I recall the agony, the stupendousness of giving birth to my first, to dear little Egg, as if it happened yesterday. That twelve whole years have passed since then is almost inconceivable, and I shudder to think how quickly the next twelve are going to whip by (I for one, am SO not ready to be twelve years older than I am now...if I think I have facial contouring 'challenges' cropping up now...goodness me).

Anyway, as is my tradition, thanks to a vile film I saw years ago starring Uma Thurman (the ONLY good thing about it, and I do mean ONLY, is how in the film she has a tradition of taking a picture of her children as they sleep, the night before each birthday) I have taken the prerequisite picture, filled his room with Happy Birthday balloons and put a few 'Breakfast Pressies' on his dresser for when he wakes up.  I grew up in a family where birthdays were magical in every way, and I've tried hard to carry on that tradition with the monsters. To that end, I've been studying for hours online, the best way to try and create a Rubiks Cube Lemon Poppyseed Birthday Cake from scratch.

Why Rubiks Cube you ask? Well, let's just say that the boy is obsessed...and no, that is not too strong a word. In the preceding months he has collected around 26 cubes of varying shape, size and difficulty, mastering them to the point of insanity (14 seconds anyone?!) and started his very own Youtube channel with almost as many subscribers as I have for my blog. I kid you not.
Am I proud? Hell yeah - but more on that some other time.

For now, I just want to make a public declaration about how lucky I feel to be a M.O.E. (Mum of Egg). He is truly unique (and at my ripe old age I totally appreciate how rare that really is) in that his amazing brain has not relegated him to wallflower nerd status as one might suppose, but rather the boy has surprised us all the past few years with his amazing athletic prowess - no thanks at all to his rather un-athletic and somewhat oblivious parents.

Turns out he's a proper sportsman with a wicked arm for bowling in Cricket and such a natural when it comes to table tennis that he recently at a festival remained undefeated for hours against a growing crowd of adults cheering on the unbeatable 11 year old and queuing up to have a go themselves. Recently on school photo day, he apparently had to scramble into seven different uniforms for all the pictures - ridiculous I know. But that's Egg you see: whatever he is 'into' he is 'really into'. He has always been that way. First it was Maths...then remote-controlled ANYthing...then...well you get the picture.

But all of that matters not a jot really. What makes me truly proud is the absolute kindness the boy inherently possesses. He certainly didn't get it from me or the husband, that's for sure. Egg has always possessed a genuinely beautiful and gentle soul. When he was a toddler that manifested itself in spontaneously hugging and kissing other little ones on the playground (me chasing behind in his wake, trying to explain to parents and their sometimes bawling offspring that he meant no harm) and now manifests itself in generously often giving all his money away to those less fortunate than himself and keeping local newsagents in business by buying bucket loads of sweets for all his mates. He is generous to a fault, and sensitive in a way that brings tears to my eyes - and his at times.

He is also very funny...and sweet...and has the most expressive dark rimmed green eyes with lashes to die for, which - if lucky enough to catch a glimpse of them through the silky blond hair he still insists on wearing way too long - have the ability to make you melt in an instant.

Simply put, I adore this boy. I love him to the moon and back, and getting him as my first, my eldest son, remains one of the best things that has ever happened to me. I know we don't deserve him, and that probably out there somewhere is a Professor and his wife puzzled with their brute of child, who grunts and plays video games 24/7 while scratching at a never ending itch on the nether regions who would have done wonders with a boy wonder like Egg. Instead Egg has been allocated two flawed but well-intentioned parents who have often stood by with a mixture of wonder and confusion (and sometimes annoyance - I shan't lie - imagine the sound of energetic and constant 'cubing' as the soundtrack to your life) and thought, "How on earth did we birth this boy?!"

Egg, we salute you...all twelve years of you. You are an amazing person and we can hardly wait to see what you do with your life. We know that you want to leave home and go off to Uni already (or in your more frustrated moments stage a Drew Barrymore-esque emancipation petition) but stay with us awhile longer please...years in fact. We love you and couldn't be prouder of you, and until you're unleashed into the world and no longer our precious little secret, we intend to enjoy all the madness and joy that you bring into our lives.

I Love You...
Mama x