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Monday, 19 November 2007

Why it is All Worth It

Have been trapped in a nightmarish parallel universe in which I am unable to stop cleaning up projectile vomit from the walls, floors and furniture and I am woken on the hour each night by wailing children, usually covered from head to toe in... you've guessed it, projectile vomit. Oh, the Joys of Parenthood. Those pastoral visions in which you float about in a flowery, fifties-style frock dishing out home-baked gingerbread men seem somehow so naive in the middle of the night as you wring out the third cot sheet of the night over the bath. But I still wished I could stay with the miserable creatures as I instead joined the world of publishing and the media again this morning, which today was busy getting itself into quite a lather over the launch of Amazon's Kindle. Of course, staying out (stupidly) late dancing to celebrate Keely's 36th Birthday on Saturday night didn't do much to relieve the exhaustion caused by the night time hourly sick-clearing. I stand firmly by my philosophy not to let being a parent get in the way of some occasional adult fun, but sometimes, I really do pay the price. But this evening, Eden reminded me of why it is all worth it. She was extemporising over dinner about how much better it would be if one could remain a child forever (I know, existential angst, aged 6) when she remarked, "If you could go back to being a kid again, Mummy, I'd choose you to be my best friend at school, and I'd sit next to you every day and I'd always choose you to sit on Top Table* with me at lunch time, cos I can't imagine having a better friend than you." Sometimes I can't reconcile her version of me ("Best Mummy in the World") with mine ("Crabby, exhausted, left-over-after-work-on-no-sleep Mummy"). I am going to enjoy it while I can, though, because I know it already; I'm going look back at this when she's fifteen and I'm going to cry.

* a privilege to reward good behaviour at Eden's school.

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