One of the things I pride myself on is being a positive person. I understand that life is not always fair and that sometimes things don’ go your way. However, I am a great fan of Victor Frankl who wrote that “Between stimulus and response, there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom
What Frankl was saying was that no matter what happens,we have a choice about how we let life affect us. That is all well and good but sometimes you just have a bad day and you have to say so. Here goes: Today was a bad day.
This morning my darling daughter Meri was anything but. She woke up and once she had finished her breakfast decided that this was the day she was going to test Daddy’s limits. She wailed like a banshee as I changed her nappy and then insisted on being contrary about pretty much everything. She didn’t want to drink out of her cup, she wanted her brother’s; she didn’t want just a few felt tip pens she wanted all eighty of them; she didn’t want to put on her coat, and going in the buggy was tantamount to torture judging from the screaming. By the time we got to lunch I was getting a little tired of this.
Lunch, of course, was a disaster. She didn’t want anything that was put in front of her but instead wanted the out-of-date melon that I had to throw away. To cut a painful episode short she was put down for her lunchtime nap, still wailing, half an hour early to allow me (and the neighbours no doubt) some peace. By this time I didn’t care whether she was hungry, ill, or tired. As far as I was concerned she was just out of my hair for a couple of hours. Thankfully she woke up in a much better mood and we had a lovely afternoon together.
Arun, on the other hand, was a delight all day. All was well until bathtime. Initially he didn’t want to go into the bath, but eventually he did in a reasonably good-natured way. However, when he came out of the bath he got very upset and threw up everywhere. So, we tidied ourselves up and had another bath. Eventually I got him to bed, looking a little worse for wear. I fear that he’s coming down with something. The problem is that when Arun comes down with something, he really comes down with it. Even the slightest cold or infection can lead to hospitalisation. So I am sitting here writing this going over all sorts of things in my head trying to figure out what caused him to vomit. Was he feeling overly anxious about going to bed (sometimes causes problems)? Did he eat something he found too rich, or is he brewing an infection? I don’t know and sitting here worrying about it won’t help me figure it out. But at the moment that is all I can do.
So, all in all, a bad day. A morning of running skirmishes with my daughter and an evening of cleaning up puke and worrying about my son. Most days I am delighted to be a stay-at-home Dad. It allows me to enjoy things with my children that I would otherwise miss. However, it is not always a bed of roses and days like today are really hard work. These days it is fashionable to say that being a parent is the best job in the world. That may be true, but at times it is also the toughest job in the world.
*Little Tigger Update
One piece of good news, though: My wife found Little Tigger. It appears that I had barrelled him into the back of the toy cupboard in the flat in a rush to tidy up. Much humble pie has been eaten and I have apologised profusely to Meri. She and her beloved cuddly toy are happily re-united and wreaking havoc together once again.