In the last couple of weeks I’ve been answering the phone to my father with “it’s just me, no baby!” and I’m rather beginning to feel like I should be starting blog posts that way. Suffice to say I’m still here, still pregnant, still working my way through my own personal list of natural methods of induction.
Kitty I suspect is finding this waiting rather trying. First of all we told her that the baby was coming in the summer, then it got hot and there was no baby, and we told her that the baby was coming in August, and if I think it’s been August for ages imagine what it must feel like when you’re three. If the Little Bump hangs on for too much longer she’s going to seriously start doubting that there’s ever going to be a baby.
So our lovely eldest girl has had a bit of a trying week. The sort of week where the combination of being over tired from nursery and the uncertainty of everything except that things are on the cusp of change had rather brought on a pixie day and she needed a little cherishing and a lot of sleep.
And so if last week’s ordinary moment was a snatched hour with Elma, this week it was Kitty’s turn. It stemmed from rather the same cause; she’s spent a good two hours fast asleep in the crook of H’s arm as he snooze-watched the cricket while Elma and I pottered around, and when we got to the end of supper we had one small daughter practically falling asleep into her mash, and another looking remarkably bright eyed, awake, and making a bid for it to be a pudding night.
We could have sent her up to bed with her sister; tucked her in with stories and kisses, and she’d probably have fallen asleep again fairly quickly, but where would be the fun in that.
So we loudly proclaimed it to be bedtime, and I scooped Elma up and took her upstairs to be pyjamaed and snuggled to sleep in my arms while the noises off from downstairs rather suggested that Kitty was being enticed into some serious tidying up and hoovering time on the basis of a promised pudding. And by the time I came down again she and H had cleared supper, put the toys away, hoovered up the detritus of the day, and laid out three beautiful slices of cheesecake.
Perched up on her chair next to me, wielding a fork and chattering ten to the dozen she was her very loveliest self. It was a treat to H and me to jointly give her our attention without distraction, and as an eldest myself I remember how special it feels to do something that’s just for you, something that compensates a little for being held to that higher standard of our expectations for a three year old; to be just a daughter and, for once, not primarily a big sister.
We talked about cheesecake, about how much Kitty likes going to the butchers with H because he will buy cheesecake and Mummy always says no, about her friend’s pirate party, and about the fun she had with Grandpa at the play park when he visited because he can lift her onto the zip wire.
And when the clocked ticked around, and we got to a whole hour past her bedtime, we snuck upstairs, tiptoeing past a sleeping Elma, and I tucked her into bed and sat as she drifted off to sleep; a suddenly so small girl in flowery brushed cotton pyjamas curled up clutching my hand as she would a teddy.
She’s going to be a big big sister before we realise (and very much hopefully by this time next week), and more than that she’s going to be the best big big sister; but life is going to change and be a bit crazy, at least at the start, and so I’m glad to have had that extra time with her; a moment for us both to remember on the pixie days.