See? this baby looks happy to hug!
One of the nicest things about children is that you always have someone to get your daily requirement of physical affection from. Children give the bestest hugs and the nicest kisses. Especially when they’re fresh out of a shower and NOT dirty/sweaty or sticky with peanut butter and jam. But unfortunately, children have a tendency to grow up. They become 6yr olds who are impatient to run and play and they start wriggling away when you hug them.They become 10yr olds who will only kiss you if none of their friends are looking. And even then, they will grimace as if you are subjecting them to cruel and unusual punishment. They become teenagers who are happy to hug and kiss you…when they want something, when they’re actually on a covert mission to weaken your defences, get you to lend them money, go to that movie with their friends, or buy them that new shirt they don’t even need. So every time Big Son greets me with enthusiasm and a generous hug, I’m instantly on guard. What do you want?! And he gives me that aggrieved, innocent face, Nothing! Can’t I just hug my mum because I love her? Ha. I’m on to you….
Thankfully, my ‘baby’ is still only four years old, so I have a few more years of abundant hugs and kisses. Or do I? The Bella Beast is getting far too smart and independent because already, she is getting irritated with abundant physical affection. As these examples show…
“Can I hug you Bella, please?”
“But I hugged you the other day.”
“Yeah, but can I hug you now?”
Big sigh, rolls her eyes. “Alright.” Face lights up, aha moment. “So can I play XBox now?”
I have to pay for my 4yr olds hugs. With Xbox. Just stamp L O S E R on my forehead…
“That’s not a hug Mum. That’s a squash.” Bella reflects and deflects my enthusiastic love.
“Let’s play animals. I’ll be an elephant. What are you gonna be Mum?”
I really dont want to play this game. It’s 7am and I’m not ready to be anything other than a sloth. “Umm, I want to be an ant. A sleeping ant.”
“Ants don’t sleep. They work all the time.”
“Fine. I’m awake. I’m a kissing ant. Can I kiss you?”
“No. Ants don’t kiss.”
“Don’t they kiss their mums?”
“They don’t got any mums. Just a Queen who’s the boss. I’m the Queen Ant and I say no kiss.”
When did this child get so smart? Queen Ants? Worker ants? When did she get so bossy? And since when did Queens not want a kiss?
“I love you mum. You’re a big, fat beautiful Princess Mum. Here’s a hug for you. But ONLY one. That’s enough for you. ” Bella masters the art of a double sided compliment. And institutes hug rationing.
“Good night Dad. I love you.” Big hug for Dad.
“Hey, what about me?”
“Good night Mum, I love you.” Walks away. “I already hugged Dad. Tell him to share it with you.”
More hug rationing. My child is putting me on a hug diet. Thank you. Thank you very much.
The future of abundant hugs and kisses for me does not look bright. I can’t have anymore children and I do NOT want any grandchildren showing up anytime soon. (do you hear me Big Son and Big Daughter!) What am I going to do?….Bella, do you want to play XBox?!