house of happy

Life adventures in prose and verse. Explorations of places, people and words. Stories and fun.

Thursday, 30 May 2013

A Family Flutterbug

Kira goes to a friend's house, to 'study'. At 8pm, I get a nagging feeling that something's missing around the house.
8.15 - I know! It's Kira. She's not back yet. I send her a text message. Nothing.
8.30 - I call her, no answer. I call her friend's numbers - all 3 of them! - and get various levels of static.
8.45 - I'm marching up and down the house clutching a soft toy, trying to calm down.
9 pm - What's the police number, anyone?
9.15 - Stiff G&T.
9.30 - Head in a bag, deep breath.
9.45 - Dip face in a sink-full of water, dry it on Kira's tiger toy. (Tears soak it back in a blink!)

10 pm - I reach for the car key, I'm off to get her. I get in the car, the phone rings. IT'S HER - awww, my Kiwi.

Stern voice: 'Hello?'
Sweet voice: 'Micaaa! How are you?' Forced cheerfulness. She knows she's in trouble.
Steely voice: 'I'm coming to get you. Be outside the gate in five.'
Small voice: 'Oh-kaaay.'

She gets in the car, quiet and adorable. On the drive back, I can only hear my own voice, giving her a stern lecture and blah and blah until even I wish someone put a band-aid across my face to shut me up. The gist of it is that she's punished and cannot go to the friend's house tomorrow, for a party, or you know what? For Ever. With that, I shut up.

We get out of the car and I step straight into a dream all mothers have and KNOW reality can never equal.

She gives me a hug. She gives me hugs every few minutes. She wakes up at 4am and comes to give me a hug in bed.
She NEVER loses her temper. Not even when I'm at my most vile. Kira equals Angel.
She praises my hair, my food, my driving. My unsurpassed beauty. My kind heart.
At supper, she gets her own cutlery. She makes herself cranberry-and-soda. She makes ME the same. She brings the pepper. Afterwards, she clears the table.
She tidies that patch of carpet next to her bed that has become an archeological site of old shoes and library books, used tissues and hair bands. Every now and again she exclaims in delight probably having found something she'd lost last June.
She brushes her teeth.
She curls up next to me with a book and looks up with puppy eyes: 'Should we read, mama?'
She ignores computers, Ipads, her phone and her games.
She NEVER once mentions her plans for tomorrow (i.e. going back to friend's house).

WHO IS THIS CHILD? This is PURE ART, I couldn't have done it better. (In fact, I couldn't have done it at all. In her place, I'd be under the table sobbing and starving myself in protest).

Instead, the day dawns and I find the angel sleeping by my side. The entire morning is a rhapsody to perfect and pleasant childhood.

At 11.43, I get the following text message, from Papa Bear (travelling in Sindh, yet all-knowing and wise): 'Hello my one, are you good? Are you tired? Are you very lovely?' (Please notice the softening tactics before we continue:) 'Can I make a teeny weeny lobby on little Kiwi's behalf? That she go to her fwiend's house for this party... (yes she's been on to me and made her plea)'... Kisses, love hearts, smiley people, all the frills.

Her knight came galloping. I melted. She got her wish. Everyone wept and smiled and hugged. The sun shone and the day was warmer from here to Sindh and back.

Eeeh, another family flutterbug.


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