A fit of fizzy flightiness overwhelmed me this weekend. I was consumed by this insane desire to be like those people who bungy jump, sky dive and buy clothes that are NOT on sale. I felt like living dangerously and walking on the wild side. Where did this strange feeling come from? Maybe it was because the week had been crazy busy – I Telesa chatted with a Pacific Lit class at Auckland University on Monday, took kids to the dentist on Tuesday, wrote furiously on Wednesday, did an interview for the TVNZ Good Morning Show on Thursday, and gave a talk at a church women’s conference on Friday. (Or maybe it was because I ingested way too much caffeine via Diet Coke overdosing to assist me with all my speech writing and interview-prepping…)
Either way, I said to the Hot Man, ‘ooh, lets be spontaneous and exciting!‘ He looked wary. ‘And do what?’
I said, let’s run away from the children and live it up all night! Dancing on tables ( or around poles), jumping off the Sky Tower, ordering not one but TWO desserts….all crossed my mind. I found a super fabulous overnight special for a lovely hotel in the city situated in the midst of restaurants, night clubs and assorted wild times venues so that we could do exactly that – ‘live it up all night’ (The mind boggles at all the possibilities in that phrase alone..live it up all night…) I was ready to live dangerously.
But the sad fact is that a woman with five children can never really live dangerously without excruciating planning. And massive atonement for the overload of guilt one feels when one abandons said children. Soooooo before I ran away, I had to :
1. organize baby sitting
2. purchase extra groceries in case there was a famine while we were gone
3. Check that torches and radios had batteries, candles had matches, smoke alarms were working, all windows and doors had functioning locks, and every child remembered the emergency number and tsunami escape route – in case there was a natural disaster, fire or influx of housebreakers while we were gone.
4. Remind Big Son and Big Daughter about paracetemol, asthma medications, treatment for spider bites, choking, accidental ingestion of too many cookies.
5. Rent DVDs and XBox games galore from the store so they wouldnt cry/be left bereft/sink into the depths of despair upon my departure.
I had a faint moment of panic when I remembered that we havent actually made a will yet and what if we both got killed in a motorway crash on the way to the hotel? Or what if the hotel got taken siege by terrorists and we were blown to bits because Bruce Willis couldnt save us? It was too late to get a will done by then so I had to let those dire thoughts go. Bad mother, bad mother – irresponsible enough to have so many children and NOT get a will done.
And finally, before we could run away for a night of illicit abandon, I insisted we take the children on an all-day fun outing. One that involved a trip to the local marine world and hours at the beach. Sand, sun, water, and fish’n’chips.Fun, fun, fun. Only then could I indulge in my fit of fizzy flightiness, chucking clothes in a bag and run away.
It was 5pm before we finally left. The hotel was lovely. We enjoyed being childless. (cue fireworks and glitter cannons here) We had a delicious dinner at a lovely restaurant. We finished eating. And then the Hot Man said, with forced joviality, Right where shall we go dancing first?
Then the sad truth hit me. I was really really really tired from hanging out with those children all day and being kind and loving and patient and joyful for such a long time. I was kinda sunburnt from the beach. My feet hurt from walking around the marine place. I didnt want to go bungee jumping off the Sky Tower. Or dancing on tables or around poles. I couldnt even order two desserts because I was still full from fishnchips from Mission Bay. I didnt want to squeeze myself into my ‘dancing on table and around poles’ attire, I just wanted to veg out and space out in ginormously comfortable pyjamas. And did I mention that I was tired?
But mostest of all? I missed my children. And my house. And my own bed. And my own shower. And my own living room. And my own fridge.
I said, shamefaced. ‘Actually, I want to go home. I miss the kids.’
And the Hot Man said, shamefaced. ‘Yeah, me too.‘
Conclusion? We must be really old. Or just really boring.
I am resolved – next time I am possessed by a fizzy fit of flightiness, I wont exhaust myself first by taking the children out on an all-day excursion of happiness. No. I will be heartless, cold and cruel, just walk out that door and slam it so loud that I will drown out the YOU CRAPPY LOSER MOTHER! sirens blaring in my head. And then nobody will be able to hold me back from the dance tables and I will order not one, not two, but THREE desserts, because I know how to live dangerously, dammit!
|We used to know how to be exciting and fun people, honestly!
(Is that edge of desperation in my voice convincing you yet?!)