I was cleaning up the kitchen while the kids were getting ready for bed and suddenly felt Wrong. Queasy. Nauseous. The not-at-all-okay feeling you get when dinner doesn't want to stay in but wants to get Out! Now!
So I sat myself down. And thought, "I'll find music. That'll be a good distraction."
I found this:
And the kids came down like moths to a flame.
"What's that you're listening to?" "It's awesome!" "It sounds like *insert famous jazz musician's name* and *other jazz musician's name*!" "Boy, that trumpet player's got some chops!"
Yeah. You know it!
Next thing, the kids are both dancing. Shaking their bums, my girl pirouetting, my son grabbing his juggling balls, and dancing while juggling. (As you do).
We all get our groove on, kids on the floor, me in the chair. The music swells and lifts us; it's like a Get Better Elixir. Music always is, for me.
And then I say, Off to Bed with You and off they go
and ten minutes later it's cuddle time.
Which I could do every single night with these kids until they're oh, 100 and I'm all wrinkles and gums.
I lie with my girl. I say, "I never want to leave," and she says, "Then stay." I breathe her in for about a million years and the nausea feels like a low buzz, faraway. If I stay forever, I will always feel this good.
Time for my boy, now. And he's all concern, all "Lie here, Mum. Don't stay long if you don't feel well." I lie down and he says, "Are you okay?" and I start to sing.
"When you're weary. Feelin' small…"
It's Bridge Over Troubled Water, which I have always loved, but don't remember so well these days. I make up stuff, and sing and sing. I run my hand through his hair (which he loves). Some of my song comes as a hum, but that's okay. He loves it when I sing to him.
I say, "I can't believe how lucky I am that I get to be your mum." We tell each other we love each other about a thousand and fifty times.
Time for a restorative Cup of Tea.
My boy is down first; he has an itch, here and here and here and is it okay to put cream on? Yes, I say. I help him dab, and sneak an extra hug.
My daughter is next. There's a buzzing in her ears. It's never going to go away! And she's SO tired! So up I go again. More cuddles, cuddles forever, smoothing her hair back, listening to her breathing start to slow. And my thoughts slow down too and the nausea drifts away like it was never there. And when I go to leave my son calls out, even though it's 10.40 by now. Good night! he says. I love you! he says. Good night, I whisper. I love you.
Peppermint tea now.
Husband home soon, I think. This one's for you, mr beautiful.
Peace, only. It's a beautiful night.