That one day. It started like any other.
Baby wakes up in the middle of the night. Screaming, "RAAAAAAAAAH!". Then me running from one room to another, again, again, and yet another time, until my sleep-drunk legs run me into a piece of ancient furniture. OUCH.. "Quiet, Baby," I hush into his soft brown hairs. "Ssssssshhhhh, shush, Baby. Away, Bad dreams. Go away. Hop it!"
To no avail.
"OK, Baby, you win," I whisper. I pick him up and cradle him into my arms on my big, green bed. "Sleep, little one, sleep. Please."
It's there too soon, the morning light. Baby is already awake. Scratch, pull, pull, pull mummy's nose. Squeeze. Wake up, mummy! I wake slowly. Too slowly. Too little sleep. "FEED ME MUMMY," Baby seems to yell with his little squeaks.
New nappy first. Then I play with Baby on my bed. I melt, as Baby smiles his miraculous smile a dozen times. Giggle, laugh, screech, brawl with laughter. Good times. Now, downstairs. Bottle time.
THEN MY MOBILE BUZZES. TWENTY-FOUR TEXT MESSAGES. FROM MY OLD LIFE. FROM LONDON.
Apparently, today is that one day. Today is the day someone asks me to be part of an amazing TV-show project, because, as the messages read, I am a writer, beautiful, and inspiring. "Ring me as soon as you can. We need a writer like you," the last text reads.
GAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH! I pick up the house phone that rings abroad "for free" and feverishly jab in the number. Shit. The '6' fails to work. Why? Oh yes. Baby has been chewing on this telephonic device, for fun. For weeks.
I root around the room like a hungry hog searching stinky mud for mouldy roots. Aha. The twin phone. I quickly ring my friend back. "Tell me all," I breathe.
It sounds amazing. I can hear about 66% of the idea as Baby also wants to be on the phone. Half the globe is on; the UAE is involved. America. The UK. North Africa. I love it already.
She says, "And then you can-"
Baby babble-screams through our conversation. He cannot help it. He gets excited when he sees something with buttons. He tries to grab the phone, even though I tower far above him.
I say, "I am sorry, that was Baby. What did you say?"
Just as she narrates this fantastic idea again, and I already see myself picking spectacular outfits out from the dressing room before make-up and filming and mentally go through all the hilarious scripts I've written, my nose brings me SMACK back to reality. Baby has shat himself mercilessly. His romper is covered in sticky poo, bearing a striking resemblance to the peanut butter sandwich I was planning to devour for breakfast. Gooey poo is plastered over his legs and while I try to lodge the phone between my shoulder and ear, he steps in his own excrement. Wow.
"Ehm, w-what?" I try again, struggling to fight Baby off from me as he attacks the phone.
"I said that you could-"
Silence. The battery has died.
I sigh. I hope she still sees me as the professional I truly am. I make sure Baby is cleaned up with a new nappy and cuddle my grinning half-naked child. I scoop up the heap of pooey baby tissues and the culprit itself (overflowing nappy), run to the bin, dump it, wash my hands, and send the woman who is possibly going to change my life the following text:
"Sorry the phone died. Am charging it now while changing Baby into poo-free clothes and taking the pooey rubbish out. Then I shall call you back while baking pancakes. D'accord?
It's OK. Nothing and no one is perfect. And this chaotic time now that Baby is still tiny enough to be called a baby? I would not want to miss it for the world, and would choose it over a high-flying career in a heartbeat.
As Iift Baby onto my hip and bake a stack of delicious pancakes (somehow my yearning for peanut butter has died), I make a new resolution. Slowly but surely, I am going to learn to combine the two: take care of Baby AND do something amazing in life. Something for me. Something that will make me feel even more proud of myself than I already am of me bringing up a minuscule human being all by myself.
Ella Fitzgerald sings to us while we flip over a pancake. A beam of sunshine warms our backs while the hot stoves warm our faces. I swing and dance while I bake and I bake while I bury my face into Baby's neck, showering him with a zillion kisses.
Jazz-Hands...Shaking Them Tail-feathers...Boogie-Woogie...Ya-Ya-Yeeeeey...Yipeee-Ya-Yee..."I Learned The Diddle In The City," I dance and sing along.
Baby giggles. I keep on swinging, and dance and sing and ding-ding-along. I sweep my arms, like bird's wings, and - whatever may or may not happen on TV - I cherish this moment forever.