Discover more from "Tangerine!" by Amanda Prowse
“7 THINGS – I have learned while babysitting for my 7-year-old nephew this week…”
This week’s “7 THINGS!”
This week has been an education, a memory jogger for me of a different time when as a single mom I wrestled with the guilt over working long hours whilst trying to hide my exhaustion and be ‘fun mom’ on demand. Not sure I succeeded and how I wish I could go back to that time right now with energy! It was a stark reminder for me of one thing – looking after little children is hard, hard work and I have so much admiration for all of you who are doing it right now. You are wonderful and it does get easier! X
Here are this week’s “7 Things!”
1. A seven-year-old does not hold back when saying exactly what they think: sweet mother of Betsy aint this the truth! It has been hot, sweaty-faced, need-a-drink weather and I have ditched all makeup. In the heat, my mascara slides down my cheeks leaving me looking like a Gene Simmons tribute act. I came down the stairs all fresh faced and glowy when my nephew looked up and said, “you look much older without your make up on!” I laughed, (crying quietly on the inside) but a few days in and I have gained a new perspective – this means the make-up is working! Hallelujah for that! He also spent a minute or two staring at me across the dining table one evening and asked, “Why is your hair crispy?” Sweet Jesus! Who wants crispy hair???? I spend the budget of a small continent on serums and lotions trying to achieve the very opposite of crispy hair – solution? I am buying lots of hats.
2. I am rubbish at playing Pokémon: In fairness this is not news. I was rubbish at playing Pokémon with Joshy and now I’m rubbish at playing Pokémon with my nephew – the two events some decades apart. I just don’t get it! I don’t understand! How am I evolving? What is energy? Who am I trying to catch and who made up all those weird names? What’s a “Golden GX rare?” – Give me Scrabble any day.
3. I read good bedtime stories: YES! This is a win! I might be old, have crispy bloody hair and be crap at Pokémon, but I still know how to read a story – I even changed a couple of the endings to something more pleasing. Why can’t the Little Pigs produce and star in a play that moves the wolf to tears and sees him crying with gratitude and clapping in the aisle? Why can’t Little Red ninja fight her way to safety with the wolf left like mincemeat? And yes, I had Snow White elope, leaving her charges to clean up their own darn mess!
4. 7-year-olds are now vastly educated about Star Wars: he put my limited knowledge to shame. The kid knows everything about Star Wars, like EVERYTHING! I have coasted through life having only seen a couple of the movies, the early ones which turned out to be the middle ones with crap special effects and a bit of a love story… anyhoo, my nephew might not have quite mastered shoelaces or keeping cereal in the bowl when eating, but he is encyclopaedic when it comes to life on Tatooine and all things Jedi… Impressed I am. - see what I did there?
5. I am rubbish when it comes to figuring out the remote controls: I grew up in a house where if you wanted to change channels on the TV or adjust the volume, you had to get off your bum and go press a clunky button or two. When a telly came with a remote control, I remember feeling it was all very fancy. Fast forward three decades and in this house, there are several remote controls – one for Netflix, one for Sky, one for the TV, one for the games console and on it goes. I’ve been here for a week and am still no closer to being able to switch on the TV… My nephew, however, lets his fingers dance over the buttons like they are instruments, and he is a maestro.
6. School discos are still the best thing in the whole wide world: I may be a little out of the loop, but this one thing has it seems remained constant. The excitement, the planning, the little kids in sequins and bows, the snacks of crisps and sticky sweets, the dancing/jumping to Baby Shark. And the collecting of wired, red faced children at the end of the night from a school hall that smells like a hamster cage – ah, took me right back…
7. Kindness is the future and it’s looking bright: to spend time with my nephew and his little friends has been the greatest privilege. To have an insight into his world and watch him interact with wonder at it all has really made me think. My takeaway this week is his kindness. He and his friends are aware of being inclusive and of being nice to each other, of considering peoples feelings. They try new things with gusto, they care for the planet, they help bugs who need shelter/water, and they are smart. If they are the future, then I feel happy that we really are in the best of hands…
Thanks for reading "Tangerine!" by Amanda Prowse! Subscribe here - it’s FREE!