My mum and dad pick my kids up from school and give them their tea on a Tuesday. Running a bit late and driving to pick the kids up from Grandma and Grandpa’s the other day, I spotted two familiar, not so small, figures walking down the road towards our house. My boys! What were they doing?
‘Walking home, to save you the hassle.’
I assumed their sister had gone ahead with Grandma. Seeing as they were saving me the hassle. So where was she?
‘She’s at Grandma’s.’
So exactly what hassle are they saving me from here?
They carried on towards home and I picked my daughter up. I was just loading her into the car when my younger son came sprinting along to inform me his brother had fallen over. So why did he need to come and tell me?
‘Is he really hurt?’
‘I don’t know.’
So I left my daughter in the car and sprinted off after my son to find his big brother. He was standing with his trouser leg rolled up and A LOT of blood pouring down his leg. Frankly I’m not sure how he managed to get that much blood from a mere fall.
He refused to get into the car, preferring to limp home like a brave soldier with his brother holding him up.
We got inside and I lay him on the settee to clean up and inspect the cut. It was deep and kind of a funny shape. I wasn’t really sure what to do with it. So I did what I always do. I rang my mum and dad. I might be 39, but at the first sign of injury or illness, I always ring them straight away and they are always round like a shot to deal with my mini-crisis.
So in attempting to save me from hassle, my son had created an additional 20 minutes’ hassle for me AND my mum and dad. As well as a very sore leg and an irreversibly ripped pair of school trousers.
And why do I ring my mum and dad? Because my husband isn’t here. It’s like as soon as he’s working away, we decide to have accidents.
Because it’s not just the kids. I have them too. Only when he’s away. And I have to ring my mum and dad every time.
A few years ago, a fireman came round to do a safety check on the house. He came round mainly about the smoke alarms, which I’m ashamed to admit weren’t working at that time and hadn’t been for a while. (Get them fitted, people! And test them regularly!) Among the things he
told me off about gave me advice on was my habit of storing things like cartons of orange juice on top of cupboards.
‘And how do you get those down?’
‘I use a chair.’ I thought that was a good answer, because I could have said I climbed onto the surface and balanced precariously, leaning back and lifting heavy stuff down. It wasn’t a good answer, apparently.
‘You only do that when you’re on your own , don’t you?’
How did he know? How did he flipping well know?
Well it stands to reason, really. There is someone in the house who is tall enough to reach the things off the top of the cupboards, so when he’s in, he reaches them. When he’s not, I have to sort it out for myself.
‘And what are you going to do if you have an accident when you’re on your own?’
Well, I didn’t fall off the chair.
But I did fall down the stairs and hurt my leg and leave nail varnish scratches all the down the wall. And I did catch my head on the door handle of my shower cubicle, leaving a deep, but strangely bloodless cut on my forehead. I sat on the step in case I fainted and rang my mum and dad who patched me up with steri-strips.
And then Daddy gets home and tells us off for being clumsy and tells us to be more careful next time. But we never are.