The reset button

‘There are two ways to live: you can live as if nothing is a miracle; you can live as if everything is a miracle’.

Albert Einstein

There are thoughts that I hope all parents have, and don’t admit to. The ones you swallow immediately and never, never let out of your mouth. I am all for full disclosure here. This is a circle of trust.

Here’s one: SHUTUPSHUTUPSHUTUP.

Here’s another: This house can rot for all I care. I’m not cleaning it.

And another: it would be SO MUCH EASIER to do this if I didn’t have a baby.

Hey, it’s alright. You’re not Satan. All it means is that you’re a human person, hanging out with another human person whom you love with a white-hot intensity but who hasn’t yet developed logic or table manners or conversation. And things are different now, but every now and again you forget. I sat at my table and thought that last one yesterday. We take Henry to lots of places, but I just wanted to go see Skyfall, and the Shakespeare exhibit, and a show for Timothy’s birthday next week, without wrangling around for a babysitter, spending money reserved for nappies and worrying about leaving my boy. I want to go away for our anniversary in March, but I don’t think timings will be on our side this time. I thought all that and stewed in my crossness, and then was engulfed in so much guilt I wanted to cry.

Change has a way of really thumping you in the face sometimes, doesn’t it? Even the best change you ever made. We just have a hankering for old routines we can’t shake off.

This evening I found my reset button. We ate homemade pizza and badly made cake pops (not my strong point). Henry ran around entertaining himself, coming back for the odd read-through of A Baby’s First Christmas – he’s feeling festive already, apparently. Then he got tired. Tim went to make his bottle, and Henry sat at the top of the stairs, hands in his lap, and cried. I knew without looking that he was waiting for me to ride on up and rescue him.

I didn’t hesitate. I ran. Because he was waiting for me. Because I can fix his problems. Because one day, I’ll wish I still could.

I couldn’t give that up for all the Skyfalls in China. If they’re showing Skyfall in China. Which, who knows. Maybe I could go see it there.

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