Aug 7, 2008

No Point Crying Over Spilt Weetbix (with an intro to Dr Drowser)

Precursor: This particular day was made more difficult because I was without the usual support from Reservoir Mum, who was out of the house until 10pm due to attendance at a memorial… still, it was a hell of a day.

Remember that eerie feeling you used to get after a hard night on the town? Hours of loud music, conversations morphing into shouting competitions, alcohol, sleep deprivation… There you'd be, sitting on the bed, winding down for a few hours sleep with a high-pitch ringing in your ears and no ability to think through a simple sequence of events – like taking your pants off, turning the off the light and getting into bed.

I experienced that again last night. The day started at six AM with a wet bed (not mine thankfully, although back in my partying days…) and a wet three-year-old. I stood shivering in my jocks in the pale night-light of the boy’s room and couldn’t work out how to manage the situation. Put some clothes on Archie? On myself? Change the sheets? Hop into Lewis’s bed?

I thought about ringing Nanny and Gramps to baby-sit but, shit, it was too early. I thought about putting Archie in front of the TV with a bowl of lollies but no, TV fries kids’ brains, and lollies… well, there’s something wrong with them too.

All the while my internal sleep pusher (Dr Drowser – more on him in future posts) was standing to one side offering me another hour of bliss if I could just come up with the right tricks. Cripes, I would have given him my soul for another hour of sleep. I would’ve knocked over an old lady for her Nanny Blanky and just TEN MORE MINUTES…

Anyway, I somehow got my act together just as Lewis woke up and then spent another ten minutes squinting under the kitchen lights before managing to get two bowls, weetbix, milk and spoons under Lewis and Archie’s beaming faces.

As soon as I turned my back – splat, Lewis swipes his onto the floor.

Spilt Weetbix at six in the morning is enough to kill a man (well, this man anyway).

The day continued in that fashion. It was hectic and loud and filled with tantrums and laughter, bandaids and conjunctivitis, snot-mopping every ten minutes and dozens of toilet trips, fights for overly visible treats at the supermarket and nappy-change wrestling, play-dough piles in the carpet and Texta lines on the floorboards, disagreements on food choices and bowl colours, worm-finding, muddy clothes, hanging out washing, four vacuum runs, thirteen table top wipes, naptime battles and twenty-three unfinished cups of coffee.

So, finally, that night, after an hour of sleep stand-off (Christ kids, if you don’t want the sleep, give it to me!) they were out to it and after some general cleaning and tidying up I was sitting on my bed with the ringing in my ears – just like the old days but without alcohol and without choice. There was dishes to be done, cleaning, ironing etc but Dr Drowser was offering me an extended trip for the simple price of neglecting my responsibilities. Yeah, it would be a bigger job with the kids in the morning but like I said, I am a sleep-addict and Dr Drowser knows it. Consequences, smonseqeunces. Here’s my left arm Dr Drowser. Give me some.

No sooner had I laid back on the bed, Lewis woke up. I scooped him up and headed downstairs in an attempt to avoid waking Archie and sat in front of “So You Think You Can Dance”. For ten minutes I was sure Lewis would nod off in my lap but all of a sudden he jumped up, blinking at me over his over-hot, ruddy cheeks and straining against the conjunctivitis sting in his right eye.

He said, “Weetbix, Daddy?”

I said “Weetbix???” and at that point Lewis started laughing, crazily.

I felt a pang of fear then and turned around half expecting Archie to be standing there with some rope and some wire-cutters. Had they been planning this the entire day? Were they trying to break me?

“You threw your Weetbix off the table, Lewy, remember…”.

Oh, hang on. That was twelve hours ago. Plus, I’m reasoning with a toddler.

Dr Drowser bent down to my ear and whispered: Give him whatever he wants and I’ll give you some slumber.

Okay Dr Drowser.

Into the kitchen again, trying to convince myself I hadn’t fallen asleep and woken up to an entirely new day. Weetbix were served and delirium set in. I ended up having the best time I’d had this far with little Lewy. He somehow thought this was the greatest joke ever and we were both laughing our heads off without any real reason. I’ve never seen Lewis laugh this hard.

I took some photos. Horrid ones – Lewis’s current illness coupled with my skills of photography. But after one of the toughest days I’ve put in as a home-Dad to this point, I ended up with the best laugh I’ve had for ages, Weetbix at 9.30pm, and a bonding experience I reckon I’ll remember for ever.

I never worked this hard when I was a full-time employee but then there weren’t these kinds of rewards on offer either.

1 comment:

Daisy said...

I'll be waiting for the day when he wakes you at 3:00 AM for Weetbix! Can't wait for that post...