I have now realised that there is another distinct downside to Beefcake’s working from home. I have become lazy and incompetent.
Yesterday he headed off to take Rhubarb to rowing camp, a trip that’s about 90 minutes each way. I was alone in the house with Poss, Pudding and Grub and had to feed them and keep them entertained until after dinner. When he worked in an actual office this would not have bothered me. I was used to being alone with them. Yesterday I was crapping myself. I realised I had become completely unfamiliar with how to juggle all the children on my own, as I never do for more than an hour or two at a time. After he left, I had a panic that they would overthrow me and I would be powerless to stop them. They did outnumber me, how could I ever prevail?
My paranoia is completely spaztastic as I still do all of the caring for the kids while he is working, it’s just that he’s there, as backup. I know this, I just was worried that if I had to wrangle them for an afternoon without a moments respite, I would end up hiding in my wardrobe or something to get away from them. It turns out that the children hadn’t picked up on my incompetence and terror and thought that I was my usual authoritative self. We managed just fine. There were few tantys and I hardly swore at all. It seems that mothering is much like the bicycle, only with more snot and vomit. I may have been cheating slightly this past year, by having a great big hairy helper, but I can still manage if I have to, which is reassuring.
I’ve been gradually learning the lessons of owning a mobile phone. It’s taken some time, I first owned one a decade ago, but I think I am prepared to share some of the rules now.
- Lock keypad so as not to call people accidentally at inopportune moments.
- Do not drop your phone in a glass of water. It will die. (This happened in January last year)
- Do not buy cheap phone in Singapore. Two things will happen. You will find that you can buy the phone for a similar price in Australia and parts of the phone will begin to fall off. (March)
- Do not give mobile phone to seven-month-old baby to play with. She will suck on it and when you go to use it, it will no longer work. (Yesterday)
Upside -I get to go and buy a new phone today. Downside – given my recent track-record it is likely to be something quite a bit cheaper than this.