Wednesday, 2 April 2008

Day out

Dig ignores me and says 'Go. London is exciting'.

I beg to differ. It is a place of misery and hazard. Shark will be lost on the underground. She will never be found. She will join the zomboid people who live in the tunnels. She will become the poster girl for Les Miserables. She will be abducted, attacked, crushed, snatched.

'You could hold her hand' suggests Dig.

Practicality, logic and the voice of reason. That's what Dig is good at. And he reminds me gently that this is how we planned to spend one-to-one time with each of the children. Trips to London, one at a time, with mummy. Or stay at home and fight over fractions.

I secretly worry I might like being with one child instead of three. Worse, I may have put off going to London in case I feel guilty about that.

Guilt is one of those feelings that has squatted inside me since the first rush of ohmygodbabieswhatdowedowiththem. Guilt came to stay when I realised if you pick up one triplet, you cannot pick up the other two. This means you are depriving two babies of care and are therefore a Bad Mother. You might put one baby down to pick up another one, then realise that's the same. Better leave them all alone. Now it's only a matter of time before Social Services come and rip all three out of their cots and march them down to foster homes where they will be loved properly and decently by three mothers and not one in a 15-minute rotation, weeping.

If not that, I could feel guilty about Dig. He has work to do. Like it or not, he brings home the wage and I bring up the kids. A day out in London means he can't work. Why don't I snatch the bread out of the mouths of Squirrel and Tiger?

Dig says 'For goodness sake. Go'. Dig says he can look after the other two. Just Go. In fact, he reminds me, it happened last year. And it was alright then, wasn't it?

No. It wasn't, actually. Time off is at cost. Tiger went berserk in the Natural History Museum. And then there was that time I came home and you'd set the table on fire trying to cook pasta over a candle flame. I had to deal with the guilt of abandoning my children, starving them and pay the price in clearing up the mess.

On the other hand, I'm being offered a day out in London. I could do with that. I miss the freedom of walking down a pavement. Having one child and not three fastened to me is as close to freedom as it comes. I agree, and say I will feel guilty anyway.

Well the day in London is easy. We meet up with beautiful Zia in the Natural History Museum, who is glamorous and urban. I feel like the visiting cousin from the shires, plucking straw from my boots, but Zia never mentions the hair. Zia sweeps all the guilt away, because she is generous, kind hearted, and makes me laugh, in bucketfuls. She says how wonderful it is to see us both and how Shark is growing, and tells me about Luna, who's going to be an architect, and is loving London.

For the day, I love London too. Guilt-free, with a skipping Shark beside me on the wide London pavements. Even the sunshine is golden. I put my fears behind me. Tiger and Squirrel will be OK. Dig can cope. He has only two kids, after all. What can be the cost to a guilt-free day?

When we step off the train in Smalltown at the end of the day, Dig phones. He says can we walk back from the station? He can't pick me up right now because they're busy. Uh-oh.

When we open the front door, the whole house is in chaos. There is washing up on every surface, toys all over the floor, smells of burning in the kitchen and noise from every room. I swear that there are twenty-two kids in the house and not just two. And Dig's first words as I come through the door are 'You promise not to blog this. Where's the first aid box?'

6 comments:

the mother of this lot said...

And you did promise, obviously.

Personally I think the words 'skipping Shark' sound wonderful and worth any amount of mess.

Brad said...

What was Dig thinking? Jay say's that to. "your not going to blog this are you?"

One day I will get to London - Life long dream.

Trevor said...

Hi Grit

Too busy to do much commenting but reading when I can. Just one? It's bliss isn't it...

Kelly Jene said...

Oh wow. I'm so glad you had a good day. An old friend of mine has triplet boys and she has gone through the same feelings of guilt. If we were still in contact I'd love to hook you two up.

Overall, I'm glad you had a good day with Shark and hope that whatever injuries occurred at the homestead have since healed.

Potty Mummy said...

There's nothing we can't blog.

And the Natural History Museum? You do realise it's just a few minutes walk from us (and more imoportantly, from the best cupcakes in London?).

Hope you enjoyed it.

Grit said...

Hi motl, it was quite a fun day, although the blood was pretty messy.

Hi brad, when you get to london we will say hello in person!

hi trevor. i know it is really not the done thing to blurt out to a parent of one child 'My God! What do you do all day?' but it's pretty difficult not to, sometimes, isn't it?

hello kelly jean. fortunately, it didn't need stitches!

hi potty mummy! next time, i will give you advance notice that the gritlets are hitting town. then see if you can spot us!