On Tuesday, I walked with The Girl from the station to my nan’s house for her funeral. It was the first time we had gone there together by public transport, and the walk from the station round ‘the back way’ is rather convoluted down alleys and odd streets.
The Girl was wondering how I remembered the way, and I became rather poignant when I told her that I’d been making that journey on and off since I was tiny and I suddenly realised that it was a journey I probably would never make again.
I then told her some other childhood stories of the area, including that the post box outside my nan’s also held familial memories. Me and my two cousins always got told off for climbing on it with the local kids, as it was a position of authority to be able to sit, and (even better) stand on top of it. And what’s more, my mum and her brother and sister had done exactly the same thing!
TG: How did you get up there?
Me: Duh! We climbed onto it – it was a knack
TG: And you got told off if you got caught
Me: Yeah, and that always happened as it was outside nan’s living room window. it stupid of us all really now I think about it – we must’ve liked to live dangerously
TG: And did you get punished?
Me: Well, we were shouted at and sometimes called in
TG: And did they tweak your ear?
Me: What?! Who?!
TG: The grown-ups, when they caught you. Did they tweak your ear and drag you back inside?
Me: *look of disdain* I did NOT grow up in a Beano comic!!!!
*The Girl collapses into laughter*
I was sitting down with The Girl, catching up on the week’s Got To Dance. The Man goes to the pub every Saturday afternoon, and we often spend that time watching stuff he’d shout about if he was here because we ALL know that it’s really awful and that we shouldn’t be watching it. But hey, I can’t watch gritty Scandiwegian dramas all the time, can I?
Anyway, she suddenlt said “how do they do that? I can’t even touch my toes!” this, from my 13 year old, skinny-minnie, gangly-limbed daughter.
“You can’t touch your toes?!” I asked, “What do you mean you can’t touch your toes? you’re 13! you’re meant to be at your most flexible! Even *I* can touch my toes no problem”
“Go on then!” she told me. so I immediately stood up, bent down, leg’s straight and touched my toes straight away. Easy-peasy!
“Oh My GOD!” she screamed “How did you DO that? At YOUR age? What kind of sorcery IS that?”
OK, so she was impressed – I don’t blame her, I AM over 40, but “At YOUR age?” Pah!
I have a lot of old diary / blog entries on a site that is going to be discontinued, and I am looking through trying to save some of my more poignant thoughts etc from then.
I have to admit, I remember this particular moment with The Girl extremely vividly. This was in April 2003, when she wasn’t even four years old.
I wanted to post it here as I’d like to keep it with myother ‘Conversations With My Daughter’.
I love my munchkin – she’s great. I’ve been having a hard time with her recently due to the ‘Dummy Fairies’ coming and taking all her dummies away (and leaving her a Barbie scooter I hasten to add), and also she can’t seem to get her head around going to bed when it’s not dark.
Anyway – that’s all boring really, the long and short of it is that she’s been getting out of bed a lot lately, when she shouldn’t be! this has been causing me a lot of stress.
Last night she was sick, poor lamb, and that wore her out so much that she went straight to bed, straight to sleep and didn’t get up again until about 6.45am
She climbed into bed with me, gave me a great big cuddle and kiss. It was lovely. She wrapped her arms around me, put her head on my shoulder and looked into my eyes. She looked so perfect, and after the last few nights of me ripping my hair out, it was a wondeful moment in the sunlight thru the curtains. I wanted to just capture it.
Munchkin: I was a good girl last night mummy
Me: I know you were darling, you were very good
Munchkin: I stayed in bed all night
Me: I know babe, you were very good
Munchkin: And I didn’t get up and you didn’t have to shout at me
Me: I know darling, you made me very very happy last night
We hugged a bit more and I looked at her and she was glowing and smiley.
Me: You are SO beautiful
Munchkin: And you’re beautiful too mummy
Then she pointed with her finger right on my chin
Munchkin: That looks like a potato!!!!!!
So, The Girl was messing around in the pool while I was reading next to her.
TG: Mum – I just did an awesome front-flip!
Me: Front flip?
TG: You know, where you roll over in the water
Me: What? Like a tumble-turn?
TG: Front-flip, tumble-turn, whatever you used to call it in the old days.
She’ll be bloody well front-flipping down a hill if she keeps that up!!
I am disgustingly behind on a load of posts and reviews, and intend to spend some time over the next few days getting back on top of things
However, tonight I had one of those fantastic exchanges with my daughter that made me think she’s more clued-up than she soemtimes lets on!
This week she is going to a Performing Arts course run by the brilliant Chickenshed Theatre and she was telling me about some of the people that she had made friends with.
TG: So, then there’s Bailey and she is there with her younger and older brother
TG: yes, brothers
Me: because she can’t have one brother that’s both older and younger, can she?
TG (laughing): No.
TG: Unless he was born on 29th February, of course!
What a smartarse! but a smart smartarse. that’s my girl!
I was talking to The Girl yesterday on the phone. Her school is closed today, but it was at rather short notice and neither myself or The Man could get the time off of work.
She still has to go in for half an hour at about midday (this is for some kind of ‘student appraisal’ with their form teachers – it’s rather bizarre, never happened in my day, and means the school is closed on the Friday before Bank Holiday? handy, aye?)
TG: I’m doing my homework, mum – I’m being extra good!
Me: OK, that’s good. Don’t forget you haven’t got school tomorrow
TG: So, what’s going to happen tomorrow?
Me: I’m afraid you’re going to have to be home alone baby
TG: Yay! I’m finally trusted to look after myself for a day!!
Me: Well, I wouldn’t really use the word ‘trust’ – more like ‘not much choice’.
TG: I will be absolutely fine – I’m happy to live by myself!
Me: LIVE by yourself? Cool!! When are you moving out then?
TG: Don’t be a silly mummy, you know what I meant. I will be fine by myself. In fact I would be absolutely fine until…well, probably until the food ran out.
That’s my girl. although knowing how much she eats, the food running out today COULD be a reality!
While getting ready this morning, The Girl looked (slightly) up at me and said:
TG: Do you know what my goal in life is?
Me: Nope, what?
TG: To be at least an inch taller than you
Me: Erm, why?
TG: I DON’T WANT TO BE A MIDGET!!!!
Cheeky bloody bint.
It’s been rather a wearing time at home for the past couple of weeks as The Girl has had problems breathing due to an infection in her windpipe!
So, today is the first day back at work – and I have been working from home while she has watched Back To The Futures 1 AND 2!
After watching that, she’s watched a couple of other things, and has just settled on what is apparently the fist programme in Series 4 of Beauty & The Geek, which I have never seen before. Personally, I am so exhausted that I can’t even be bothered to get her to turn it over – in fact, she wants me to TiVo it!
So I said to her “So, which would you be? Beauty or a geek?” and she said “I have absolutely NO idea, mum! I think I’d be right in the middle, cos I’m just totally average. I know I’m really geeky, but I can be a little bit of a beauty too, can’t I?”
Bless her, and she’s right! She’s geekily gorgeous!
I have no idea what happens in Beauty & The Geek? Should I be letting her watch it? Does it all come out right in the end? Is it good for trying to break down perceptions of stereotypes, or does it play to them?
(She’s currently getting VERY vocally annoyed with the girls trying to do some IQ type test that she is doing without even thinking hard!)
So, I was walking from the station to Westfield with The Girl the other day, and I was giving her an idea of how she sounds when she’s being really sullen and teenagerish. Obviously she didn’t really like it.
TG: Ok, mum, you can stop intimidating me now
Me: I wasn’t
TG: Yes you were, just now.
Me: What are you talking about?
TG: Just now – you were pretending to be me!!
Me: Ohhhhh, well then you mean ‘imitate’!
TG: Oh. OK. So what’s ‘intimidate’?
Me (glaring straight into her eyes and doing my best Ross Kemp impression): Now, why don’t you just stop giving me jip and come shopping like a good little girl?
TG: *pause while she just looks at me* Mum, you’re scary.
Me (smugly): No darling, I’m intimidating
TG: *thinks, then gives me a big grin* But you don’t sound anything like me!
Me (sarcastically): Oh ha ha. Touché.
TG: What’s touché?
Me: A turtle
Last week, when I got home one night, The Girl was on the phone. I wasn’t sure who to, but she was happily chatting away.
When she finished, she came and said hello to me and then asked:
TG: Have you got anything planned for me next week?
Me: Well, just a couple of things, but that’s Monday and Tuesday, why?
TG: Would it be OK if I stayed at grandma and grandad’s for a couple of nights?
I assumed that must have been who she had been on the phone to, so said:
Me: yeah, that’s probably OK. When, and how long for?
TG: Oh, I don’t know yet? Shall I ring them and check that it’s OK?
Me: Erm…who were you just on the phone to?
Me: So – erm, grandma & grandad haven’t spoken to you about this?
Me: So you want to ring them up to invite yourself round?
Me: Don’t you think that’s a bit presumptious?
TG: But grandma & grandad LOVE having me over!!!!
I am not actually sure that her head can get much bigger…