When he was a really small babe, I was nervous and anxious and relaxed at all the wrong times. I was upside down in a snow dome that someone had just shaken. I’m not sure when it flipped around, but now I have this kid who is also one of my best mates.
I’m up to God knows how many weeks where my husband has worked six days and six nights. While this has been testing, it’s also meant that I’m the sole parent on whom my son relies, and it has brought us so close together.
We play lots of rad games: building towers and smashing them down, riding bikes around the house – me with my knees up to my ears on a tiny trike – construct super forts out of pillows and tents, drink water out of the hose, chase after the dog, and, my new favourite, swing side by side at the park and squeal ‘weeeee’. It’s like I’ve become a child myself hanging out with my little mate so much.
The downside of this is that our house has become a paddock of destruction. And I’m not talking just the standard mountains of washing everywhere, dirty floors, and sticky surfaces. I’m talking hazardous destruction, such as scooters, things with wheels, sharp-as-buggery Duplo, balls of all sizes and, most dangerous of all, plastic prehistoric creatures.
Earlier this week, we were setting up all the dinosaurs to fight and eat cheese on the carpet. I was mucking around trying to make a hill out of a pillow for the dinosaurs to jump off, when I sat down hard, really hard, on a stegosaurus.
I screamed as the hazardous spikey spine almost went up my bum, my coccyx almost shattering to pieces. The words that came out of my potty mouth were instantly repeated by Alfie as he tried to copy me, sitting on the floor shouting ‘F$#*ing mother f&*%er.’ Deadly.
I inhaled, breathed through the pain and went and had a look at my bum in the mirror while my son looked on. It was red, possibly grazed. Who cares, it was so sore.
The next day at work I hobbled around the office, my colleagues asking me why I had a limp. I wasn’t ready to explain; I’m still considered a new person at my work.
Yesterday, I had enough courage to go and see a doctor. I was concerned about the bruising on my back and the graze near my bum. I walked into her office and explained that I had a sore bum. She asked why and my face went the colour of a ripe tomato. All I could think about was that she thought I was involved in some kind of sick prehistoric sex adventure. I told her about the stegosaurus and no doubt she told her colleagues about the ‘dino-gyno’ patient she had over morning tea. I was somewhat mortified by the thought, but happy that there was no long-term physical injury: just bruising.
I returned home to tag team with my hubby so he could go to work. He and Alfie were both filthy and wet from playing with the hose and the dog. The house was a filthy burrow, resembling a massive dirty cave. My son was lifting a brick like Bam-Bam, his nappy hanging down around his knees like a loincloth. My husband spoke to me using grunts and arm signals. On the bench, there was a steak thawing out. I tripped over a brontosaurus, falling and tearing the strap of my leopard print top, resembling Wilma Flintstone. I rubbed my dino butt.
Had I stepped back into prehistoric time?
My husband left for work, leaving me with the cave. I turned to face the disaster zone and smiled at my giant son carefully building a rock house for his dinosaurs to eat their cheese in.
How good is this age? It’s certainly prehistoric, in a land that time forgot.