It’s Sunday afternoon and Ant is driving us into town so I can grab a new sleeping bag for George. One that hasn’t got a pink mouse ballerina on, preferably. The poor boy has suffered the indignity of his current hand-me-down for ages and seeing as we’re going on holiday next weekend, he can have a new one.
“Mum-mum. Can we go to Disney now?” Olivia asks for the yillionth time in the last 32 minutes.
“Six days, wiggly bum! Just six sleeps and we’ll be on the plane!” I tell her. Again.
It’s not annoying me though, her constant questioning. I’m absolutely loving her excitement and sense of anticipation. It reminds me of being a child. The only thing is, I can see she’s getting frustrated with the wait. She’s mixing for a meltdown. Six days to a little toddly-bod who’s only been on the earth for less than 36 months is going to feel like forever.
“But please mum-mum. Can we go now?!” She shouts at me over the head-rest.
I try and explain to her that we have to adhere to schedules and tickets and availability, but she isn’t interested. She wants to go NOW. Six days is a teeny lifetime and she is so excited that she might just explode in a Disney princess glitter bomb.
“What characters are going to be at Disney?” She asks, again for the yillionth time. I try a different response, on this occasion. Just to vary the script.
“You tell me,” I say, “Go on…”
“There will be Mickey Mouse and his wife and Donkle Duck,” She explains, “And his babies and Beauty and The Lion King. Mum-mum, is Peppa Pig going to be at Disney?”
She’s thrown it back at me.
I have tried to explain to her before that not everything on TV is going to be in Disney World, but she’s entirely indifferent to my response. As far as she’s concerned, everyone that she knows or wants to know is going to be there.
I’m just grateful that she’s not asking if Ant’s sadly departed doggies or her lovely uvvah granny are going to be there again. Those questions are always a bit more tricky to answer and usually end in tears.
But she’s only seen Disney World in pictures and films. She doesn’t really have any idea what it is. All she sees is fun and sparkle and lots of over-sized animal people.
Gosh, but I remember being little and so excited I just wanted to put the world on fast-forward and get to the good bit: to go to the next party and stuff my face with jelly and ice-cream and to skip over the boring Wednesday dinner of chicken and mash. For time to just hurry up and get a move on. For it to be my birthday or Christmas or holiday. Please…anything but another boring day!
Tomorrow just seemed to offer so much more than the today ever could. And the excitement of the day to come was almost more brilliant the occasion itself.
I want her to stay this happy and excited forever. For everything to be new and fun.
But since having the babies I am so much more aware of time. I’m almost scared of it. It goes so quickly and it is so precious. I just see the sands draining away but I want it to stop. It’s all I have. I love it.
Livvy is three in a couple of weeks but the day she was born seems like yesterday. I love her more every single moment as she gets even taller and funnier. She’s such a sensitive, happy little girl and she’s growing into a lovely child. It’s an amazing thing to be a part of.
And my other newborn isn’t all that new. He’s a walking, climbing, bundle of energy; learning something fabulous every day and figuring it all out. Sussing out the system.
Since having children I love time on my own almost as much as the time with them. I enjoy the quiet and a hot cup of tea, or a bottle of wine. I am so appreciative of the peace – more so than ever before. Because I’m so grateful for the time. I had lots of time to sit and just be before, but now it’s rationed. And so I bask in nothingness.
I love my babies so much that I find time intimidating. They’re growing up so quickly. I’m scared about being excited for tomorrow because I don’t want to wish the time away.
But Olivia and George are desperate for the weeks to be eaten up. To grow up, to be allowed to sit in the front seat of the car and eat chocolate cake until they’re sick. George wants to big so that he can pull mummy’s hair even harder, I think.
And then Olivia abruptly wakes me from my musings.
“Mum-mum! Is baby Jesus born on the table going to be at Disney?”
Hmmm. That stops me in my tracks.
There’s one for daddy.