Chublet improves her gross motor, balance and coordination skills scrambling on and over the pile of washing waiting to be folded. ‘Look Mummy, I’m climbing a mountain.’
It is with great joy that i can announce that chublet is almost toilet trained. Much of this is thanks to her fabulous day care, who have encouraged, cleaned up and supported her over the last couple of weeks. The number of nappies i need to change in a day has dropped dramatically and the number of accidents on the carpet at home have also decreased significantly. All good. However the cleaning up hasn’t finished completely. You see, for some unexplained reason, Chublet is that rare breed of female who always, without fail, misses the toilet or potty.
I’ve watched her sit on the potty (backwards, because that’s how she insists it works), pause, then urinate ALL OVER THE BATHROOM FLOOR. Sure, some of it gets in the potty, but at least half goes over the floor. If she agrees to sit on the toilet, it’s reduced to about a quarter, but she still manages to miss the bowl despite sitting right on top of it.
And so it is that with each and every toilet trip for Chublet, the mop and floor cleaner come out and we clean up after her, carefully lifting her up and out of the way of the mess beforehand.
All I can do is shake my head and smile proudly at our bathroom floor that sparkles like never before.
This post has been churning around my brain for a while now. I haven’t had the words and the emotional strength to write it. I still don’t know if I’ll do justice to an amazing woman.
Saying goodbye to you was so wrong. You were meant to be with us for years yet. You were meant to meet my daughter, in person, not just through emails, and tell her stories of the mischief I got up to as a kid – mischief you so often instigated and encouraged. You were meant to keep sending me birthday cards, always on time, always with a silly something that made me laugh. You were meant to be there for us to visit when we could make the trek across the country. You were meant to continue inspiring, challenging and pushing me forward in life and my career.
More than anything you were an inspiration to me. You challenged me to really think about the decisions I made in life, in my career, in connecting to the world. Each time we spoke (far too rarely as I know now), you questioned me in a way that made me think hard, explain myself and look deep into my soul to see why I had chosen the path I had. Once you had done that, and heard my answers, you cheered me on, telling me you had my back, telling me I could achieve more than I believed, showing me how to be the best person I could be. You gave me an alternate view of life, you who worked so hard at each and every job you held, you who gave to your community in so many small ways, you who continued to find joy in life, delight in little sillinesses, and explore the wide, wide world.
That you never had children of your own was a selfish pleasure for me. You were able to give us so much of your time, your love and yourself. You were always a part of our lives, from regular visits as small children, to increasingly infrequent phone calls, emails and visits. Yet each time I made contact you gave me all your attention, taking time off work to spend a day with me, emailing me little thoughts and encouragement when you knew I needed it, and always showing me how special I was in your life.
I now have some of your most loved clothes sitting in my wardrobe, clothes made for you; yet fitting me perfectly. Clothes that you wore to so many special occasions; clothes worn in treasured photographs. These clothes still smell of you, even two months after being added to my wardrobe. There are nights when your scent is stronger, nights when I go to sleep and dream of you. I hope that when I wear these, I stand a little taller, walk a little stronger and go a little further, just as you always believed i could.
You are missed so much. The world is a little less without you in it. Your spirit will continue to encourage me to explore, challenge and contribute.
In the last couple of weeks I’ve been made aware of how often I reach for my iDevice on my days home, while supposedly entertaining Chublet. I have realised how regularly I tune out of the monotony of parenting by using the excuse of connecting with the wider world through my FaceBook, email or Pinterest habit. Chublet has contributed to this increasing realisation, both by telling me to put my phone away, but also by searching out my phone or tablet when she sees me on one or the other. I wish I could say proudly that my daughter doesn’t know how to use an iDevice, but unfortunately the only thing she hasn’t figured out yet is the password to unlock them.
I have decided to tackle both of our addictions in two ways, firstly, our budget is going to take a hit and I’m enrolling Chublet in extra organised activities on our days home. At present she does Ballet on a saturday morning, then follows that by coming to Pilates with me. That’s been it and i’ve been happy with that. But her latest developmental leap has seen her becoming much harder work to entertain and keep occupied on a day at home. She wants me to be with her and doing things, and each activity only lasts about 3 minutes before she turns destructive (painting herself, throwing / eating playdough, stickers everywhere but the paper etc). I figure if we get out of the house to an organised activity that i don’t have to plan or manage that’ll help both of us. The second method is that i’m starting to introduce a screen time timer. It’s something that i’ve been thinking about doing as she gets older to give her greater choice and responsibility with her screen time (a number of 10min tickets allocated each week and once used up all screen time finishes), so starting now, when she sits next to me with a device and as i browse through random stuff on my own device i set the timer for 10min. Once that timer goes off we both put our devices away and go and do something else.
I still get the little eyes with the ‘Just one more?’ attempt, but hopefully leading by example will help her see I mean it, and will help me remember to put the device down and out of easy reach. Who knows, less screen time temptation might just see me be bored enough to get a little more organised…