The biggest problem with four children?
For instance – bed time tonight. C’s in studio working, so bedtime was all mine. Which 99 times out of a 100 will be easy, fine and dandy.
Today Jolly came home from school with nasty high temperature – and Bear has been in a manky moodfest all afternoon.
So 7pm rolls around, and the routine commenced – first off from the blocks was Bear – bathed, storied, bedded happily. Until I leave the room, when she starts to moan. Not proper crying, just a nasal, half-hearted aaa-ha-ha-ha-ha-aaah that goes on and on and on.
Eventually gave in, and went to her. Just had her lying quietly and stroking her back when Jolly started calling me. On High Sick Alert I dumped her and ran to him, her furioous screeches following me down the hall.
Whilst settling him (no sick, just headache) No.1 started shuffling to the bathroom and playing the Victorian-lady-in-a-decline drama. I realised he had sopping wet hair from the bath, so whisked him off for a hairdrying session (whilst giving him a stern too-old-for-dramatics-perfectly-capable-of-drying-own-hair talking to).
He flounced off in a temper as Boy appeared asking for his hair to be dried.
Bear by this time is kicking up with mucho gusto.
Then No.1 reappeared sheepishly requesting a hot water bottle.
At which Poorly-Jolly called he’d quite like one too….
I flounced and huffed in a grandly adult way and No.1 stalked back to bed in high dudgeon.
Two hot water bottles later (calling to still-shouting Bear in sing song voice from kitchen assuring her mummy may be back some time before midnight) I stagger back upstairs to find No.1’s room is in total silent darkness. He has sulkily decided that when I said ‘Get To Bed’ in sternly frustrated louder-than-slightly-necessary tones, what he had heard was “Go, Get out, Leap into bed, Switch off all lights, Sleep instantly and do NOT let me see you again till morning.”
Long chat with No.1-The-Drama-Queen ensued, and grumpiness resolved into pleasant good nights – finally leave him reading quietly.
Now got to return to poorly Jolly (noticing in passing that it’s now Late, and Boy is still listening to his mp3), and he actually didn’t want his hot water bottle after all (grrr) – but his temp is climbing, so prolly good thing. Back downstairs for junior nurofen, calling more singsong words to now-just-moaning Bear, then back up dose Jolly. He calms with a few minutes cuddle, and settles down rather sadly to try and sleep.
By this time Boy has thought better of himself and decided that with the mood Mummy is now in he’ll err on the side of caution and whisper a sweet goodnight after packing himself up promptly. Sensible boy.
Bear is now silent, and I am NOT going to go investigate in case she starts up again. But am of course now sitting here with visions of her smothered in her own duvet so will have to go soon, just to reassure myself that she is sleeping peacefully. If she’s not sleeping peacefully this will be a Very Bad Move, and I shall of course curse my stupid Mummy Worry head.
Why do they always do it on the nights C’s working?
AND I haven’t cleaned the kitchen yet; I can hear the debris from four children’s pizza-making laughing at me from here.