I think that, 99% of the time, I am a good mum.
I devote a lot of time to my boys, I listen to their woes, wipe their tears, wipe everything else that might need wiping, I play with them, entertain them, utter not a word of complaint when they accidentally hit me/ dribble on me/ charge into me with the force of an angry bull.
However, every so often, just occasionally, I am a really bad mother.
There are certain things that a mummy should never do, aren’t there. Most of them, to be fair, I don’t do. But one thing, one awful thing that I do do, is I laugh at them. Even when it might be potentially humiliating and probably slightly scarring for them. I am, I admit, deep down, a bit of an evil cow.
One such event happened today, one event that proved my bad mummyness.
Poor old DB1 was having a good old time in the bath. Splashing away, and having a right old giggle. But I must confess to being a little bit on the irritable and tired side, and thus, a tiny bit irritated at him. Particularly when he decided to attempt to squirt DB2 with an empty bottle of bubble bath, filled with water.
I kept asking him not to. You know the feeling, fellow parents, don’t you. ‘No, don’t do that, darling.’ ‘What did I just say?’ ‘Come on now, don’t do that. You wouldn’t like it if it was done to you.’ ‘No, don’t do that. NO. I said NO. Do you want to get out? Now? Well, stop doing it then.’ Etcetera, etcetera. It was getting towards the time that I like to refer to as ‘wine o clock’ and I must confess, my full disciplining powers were undermined by my head being filled with thoughts of reclining on the sofa with a class of sauvignon blanc.
DB1 kept trying to do it. He really did. His little face went quite purple with exertion as he attempted with all his might to squirt his little brother in the face, huffing and panting as he frantically pumped his little arms on the bottle, making the classic ‘gnnneeergh!’ noise as he did so. However, DB1 hasn’t quite mastered the laws of physics yet, and didn’t realise that, given the angle he was tilting the bottle at, the chances of any water coming out were completely non existent.
After a while of frustrated attempted, he paused, puffed out and fairly irritated himself; eyeballed me, as though it was somehow my fault, then did the classic manoevure. He turned the bottle round to his own face, holding it level with his eyes, squinted his gaze and peered earnestly into the neck of the bottle, trying to figure out why it wasn’t working. And then gave the bottle a mighty squeeze.
Jets of water came gushing out with comic-book speed, smashing poor DB1 directly in the eye and liberally covering his entire face. He let out the most hilarious squark, flew backwards as though he’d been shot, then glared at me, as though daring, just daring me to laugh.
Now, a good mum would have kept a straight face. A good mum would have bit her lip, and checked her son was ok, after being hit in the face with a jettison of speeding water.
But, as established earlier, sometimes I am not a good mother.
So instead, I fell to the floor, absolutely p***ed myself with laughter, until I was actually crying, and it took me about five minutes to recover. Poor DB1.
To be fair, the lad took it in very good humour. He even maintained a good humoured expression (though with a slightly long suffering look) as I relayed the entire tale, in lurid detail, to OH. And again, laughed openly, in a completely unsympathetic way.
But DB1…if you will try to squirt water in your baby brother’s face…karma will bite you in the bottom!