This week Moville writer Sharon Thompson shares another tale exploring the life of local women.
The Donegal Woman’s Words creative series returns with another tale from Moville writer Sharon Thompson.
This week we are joining an auntie with no children, who issues six pieces of advice for babysitting your nieces and nephews.
Six point plan from the Auntie with no kids …. who knows it all.
1. All is fine until they can say – No! Up to this point your darling nieces and nephews are the apple of your eye. Rightly so. There’s the little burbs, farts, smiles and coos and nappies that may need health warnings. Handing the cherub back is easy as there’s usually a parent close at hand.
But now… this scary toddler’s been told you’re babysitting and totters unsteadily and eyes you with glee. Upon your naive insistence, the exhausted parents leave. As soon as the door clicks closed, you know this is going to be hell. In seconds, the cherub’s almost naked and totally filthy. Every toy’s on the floor and no matter what you ask them, it’s answered with a loud, definite NO!
2. So … Don’t ask them anything (see point one) – Will we put on your nappy? Lord God don’t ask them that! Say nothing. Launch in like a stealth missile, grab the child in a stronghold and attempt a nappy change. They’ll escape. So then chase, wrestle and sweat buckets as the child giggles, crawls everywhere and you break your back.
3. Food goes everywhere bar their mouths. (Water too) Beware of where the mush can end up. Prepare for flying food and large full bottles flung with great accuracy!
4. Your notion of discipline is funny to them. Strong and firm you stand tall and try your mother’s voice. The toddler ignores you or they simply refuse point blank and scream their favourite word. (see point 1). You raise your voice and threaten violence and they laugh. It’s an evil laugh I tell you. You’re totally at sea and make the mistake of a nervous giggle which they notice! They’ve won this battle. Feck.
5. Expect to be very tired mentally and physically – Now you think you’re prepared for this. But you’re not. You think only of bed and lying in silence. But then there’s the bed-time routine – HA! (See point 1 and 2.) DO NOT say anything about bed even though you may die of tiredness and it’s only been two hours of the trauma.
How can it only be seven o’clock? Has the clock stopped? Teeth cleaning starts where they suck the nice toothpaste and scream ‘More’. If only they ate as much dinner! Book after book, story after story and there’s no way they’re staying in that cot prison. Sitting in the darkened room, listening to howls and dodging dolly missiles you decide.
6. I-pads, TV and giving-in are key to survival!
Check back next Sunday for another short story from Sharon. If you are a local writer of stories or poetry, email [email protected] to inquire about featuring.