Andrea Mara

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So shoot me

Two weeks ago, the toddler discovered television. And I am so happy. I know it’s not good for him, I know at twenty months he is too young for TV, but my happiness outweighs any anxiety or guilt I might have about this.

For the first time in six years, I can make dinner in the evening. SIX YEARS.

My three kids were all “armsy” babies, a lovely term I heard recently. They didn’t like bouncy chairs or playmats or swing chairs or any of the other paraphernalia that we bought or borrowed in the vain hope of getting a few minutes to throw together a chicken casserole.

I would visit friends and gaze enviously at their contented babies relaxing in their rockers or kicking on their playmats, while I walked around the room with mine in my arms.

At home I would gaze woefully at the pile of laundry or unpeeled potatoes and wonder at what  point the baby would be happy to be put down on the floor without subsequently grasping my leg and clinging like a limpet (a cute limpet of course)

And over time, each baby became a child, and eventually gained the confidence to be apart from me, if only in the next room. But by then, another sibling had come along and was up in arms, so no gain for the wannabe-cook, still looking forlornly at the unpeeled potatoes.

My two older girls are allowed three programmes for their evening “telly time” – they love it a little too much, and three programmes are about two too many but we are where we are and there’s no going back now.

The toddler had ignored TV all this time, but two weeks ago, his attention was caught.

“Mouse!” he said, pointing at Micky Mouse Clubhouse, and at that moment, my third child was won over by Disney.

And I finally peeled the potatoes. Well actually, I wrote this post. But the potatoes are next.

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