Mother Fluker

A Migrant Mother's Musings

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Fantasy Baking

This is my new initiative to try to get more sleep and thus immeasurably improve the quality of my life.

H is a great little sleeper. However, he regularly stirs due to (I suppose) nightmares, though what his nightmares could possibly be about is beyond me. Maybe someone is trying to cut his hair or generally curtail his freedom in some menacing and unnecessary way, by changing his nappy or stopping him pushing his stroller in front of a lorry. Anyway. The upshot is that once or twice a night he yells out loud enough to wake me up in the way that only a child's cry can. Even though I am in some far gone corner of unconsciousness I find myself staggering towards his room in Maternal Alert mode. Usually before I even get to the door all has gone quiet and I fall back into bed desperately trying to get back to whatever bizarre dream was entertaining me.

But this usually proves elusive. At the moment I have quite an impressive list of worries, mainly to do with House Purchase in Australia and associated traumas, Flat Sale in Scotland and associated traumas, impending legal action against the charlatan rental agency in Scotland who still owe us about seven hundred pounds, and an ongoing saga with HBF, our health insurer here who told us that we could transfer an international policy we had and then changed their minds, meaning we might have to pay for the forthcoming delivery ourselves - about $10,000 according to latest estimates. All of these diversions bubble around in my head in the early hours, and it's just impossible to get back to sleep.

The way that I have tried to handle night worries for many years is simply to Think About Nice Things until I relax and drop off again. But Nice Things is too much of a general category and the brain needs firm discipline at 2am. So I have been trying a more focussed approach - sundry fantasy activities. Fantasy gardening I find difficult - we are not in the new place yet and I can't visualise the garden properly, plus I am still quite unfamiliar with Southern Hemisphere plants and growing schedules. Fantasy sex is no good - that only wakes me up more. But Fantasy baking is just the job. I lie and make elaborate plans for new kinds of cakes and biscuits, do a mental audit of the store cupboard and write a shopping list for missing ingredients. When morning comes I can never remember what delicious confections I came up with, and there is drool on the pillow, but at least I dozed off in the end.

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Hair today...

...gone tomorrow. At least, I wish that applied to H's hair. He has reached the critical stage of floppy blond locks now falling into his eyes and over his ears and I am braced to endure the awful task that taking him to the hairdressers has become.

The first time I got H's hair cut, he was good as gold and beamed beatifically at all the other customers, while giving Jodie the hairdresser a look of bemused wonderment as she snipped about. Of course, Nanna was present on that occasion so naughtiness was an unlikely event anyway.

The second time was a bit harder, but we all got through it unscathed.

The third time he went totally berserk, having decided that he wanted to play in the traffic outside rather than sit in the salon. After prolonged wrestling, we managed to get about a third of his hair cut. He walked around with a third of a haircut for a week until I managed to slot in taking him back. The rest of his hair was eventually cut, but not before the other customers suffered eardrum perforations and my nerves were in shreds.

Today, the hairdresser mysteriously claimed to be completely booked up at all the times I suggested. I think she doesn't want to face the ordeal any more, and to be honest, I can't blame her.

I daren't attempt to cut it myself as the thrashing about that goes on in proximity to the scissors is a responsibility that can only be foisted on a professional.

I'm beginning to think that dreadlocks may be the answer.