11.07am 5th May
Yesterday was the 4th May and it was Bank Holiday Monday. Without my intending it to, the day became quite eventful and by the end of the evening, I had to finally admit to my other half that I had been blogging on the side. (That’s BLogging, if any of you get your Bs and Ds mixed up.) It played out like this:
I came into the living room after putting the boy to bed; I was smirking.“What’s up with you? Why are you smiling?” He asked.
“Erm, you’re going to think I’m an idiot,” I replied.
So let’s back up a little. I need to explain how and why I suddenly got catapulted into the limelight. And by limelight I mean 70 follows on Twitter, 15 likes on Facebook and 17 followers on Instagram (as 3.09pm 5th May.)
It is tradition to venture into Rothwell, which is the town I grew up in, on May Bank Holidays. Over the years, my motivation for going, who I went with and what I got up to has changed. As a teenager it was to go down there and ‘hang’. In fact, I can remember being thirteen years old and trying my first ever puff of a cigarette on May Day. Thankfully, I hated it and have never smoked but, for a millisecond I was a rebel. I can remember returning home and talking to my mum and I was backed against the wall in case, heaven forbid, she smelt smoke on me. The fact that it was only one puff and it was outside probably meant that I was pretty safe from being caught but, I was terrified. That’s good though isn’t it? Being terrified of being caught. It means that my mum had this parenting thing down. My one puff was probably one of the most rebellious things I have done and every May Day I remember it and cringe. Rebel? Laughable.
Over the years then, May Day has meant ‘hanging out’ by the May Pole as a teenager (but away from the cool kids who could actually handle a cigarette), going to the pub with my friends as a young adult, (I had a few years out when I was trying to get educated at university), going to the pub with my boyfriend, going to the pub with my mum and dad (after breaking up with the said boyfriend) and finally, actually going down to see the May Day celebrations with my own children.
I need to just break it off there as the boy has just made an epic noise which can only be a poo and I have to pick the girl up from nursery. I’ll just add that it’s 3.30pm now so that’s how long it has taken me to write three paragraphs. Hope I am not going to have to meet deadlines anytime soon.
Right – I am back as is the whirl wind that is my three year old. We have had a wee, salt and vinegar crispies, a small strop, more salt and vinegar crispies, a wee and a poo and that brings us to now. She is watching Topsy and Tim on the iPad in front of the TV which has (you guessed it) Topsy and Tim on pause.
Yesterday’s May Day celebrations saw my best friend (JC), my Mum and I venture, with our children, into Rothwell. We were one ride down (£2 a kid) and all was going well. Then Mum threw a curve ball. “Is that a snake in the grass?” She observed.
WTF? No, of course it wasn’t, we weren’t in the prairies, marshes, deserts or forests of North America (thank you Wikipedia). However, she was indeed correct. There was a snake in the grass. A huge, chunky yellow one with a bulge the size of a can of baked beans or a small child’s hand protruding from what I assumed was its stomach. Then she walked over to it with the pram and the girl in hand. I am not afraid of snakes (well, I wouldn’t want to confront one) so I walked over to it too. I actually thought my girl would go into melt down but, much to my complete surprise, she stroked it. I did too! Mum then did a swift turn and pointed at something else lying in the grass. Upon first glance, it looked like road kill. It was, in fact a fat red lizard laying down and soaking up the fine Yorksire air. Barely being given the time to look, she was off again with my daughter eyeing up a big black centipede thing, a skunk, a meerkat and a little monkey.
“It’s educational…and free,” she shouted as I was getting more and more flustered.
My friend, I noticed, was getting a bit agitated too and I knew why. We were getting closer to the tent and in the tent lurked the tarantulas. I had this dreaded feeling that I was going to turn around and there would be someone right behind me holding one and it would make me jump, which would then make the tarantula jump and of course it would jump onto me. Despite not being a fan of arachnids herself, Grandma waded in once again with her beloved Granddaughter. I hesitatingly followed. Then I saw one being lifted from its glass imprisonment. I yelped and I was gone. If the girl suddenly needed rescuing, it wouldn’t be by me. I could see my friend already guiding her children towards the big bouncy slide. Even though it was £2 a head, it was better than a tarantula jumping onto your face.
Two more rides later and it was lunch time. There were two pubs nearby. One was packed and the other expensive. My mum then had a genius idea and she was forgiven for the creepy crawlies. We headed to another pub that was opposite the fish shop. The clouds parted and the sun began to shine; it was almost as if God wanted us to sit in a beer garden, drink lager and eat fish and chips. And so it was done.
After lunch, we said our goodbyes, my daughter had a melt down as her two friends were leaving, my son, who had snoozed his way through reptiles, rides and lager, woke up and made his presence heard so we headed home. Before leaving though, I reluctantly told my friend that I had dabbled with a blog; I sent her the link for her to read later.
Bedtime was once again upon us. My partner and I take the ‘divide and conquer route’ whereby he puts the girl to bed and I, the boy. I usually use this time to catch up on texts and social media as I can’t do much else whilst I am using the magical milk to get him to sleep. I sent a text to JC to wish her son a happy birthday for the next day and she replied to say she had read a post. It was all good. Suddenly another text came through. It was from a friend I work with. I love this girl because she says and sees things as they are. Now, I am not much of a swearer but, I took her ‘effin hell, I’ve just read your blog’ as the highest of compliments. This was after, of course, me having my own ‘effin hell’ moment of how did she see it? In my sheer numtiness, did I publish it to the whole of Facebook when I sent the link to my friend earlier? No. It was Instagram. I checked my new Teaching Mum Instagram page (that I didn’t think was connected to my personal one) and suddenly I had 17 followers, all of whom I knew. Damn it. I was out there and open to criticism and pisstakes. However, what followed was quite lovely. My work friend said she liked it. JC text again and said it made her laugh, I got a few likes on my Instagram page, I got a nice message from another acquaintance (who is also trying her hand at blogging) so I plucked up the courage to ask a few of my close friends on Facebook to ‘like’ my page. And that kind of brings me back around to now. Therefore, thank you KW for your expletive text last night; it made me step out of the metaphorical blogging closet. Thank you to JC for telling me that I made you laugh and thank you to my other half who, rather than look for the blog and make fun of me, allowed me to watch Modern Family, have a cuppa, sit back and enjoy knowing the fact that a few people whose opinions I really care about had read something that I had written.
One huge snake, a lounging lizard, a centipedy thing (that’s definitely its scientific name) and three children who didn’t appreciate being told off for running around a beer garden.
11 hours later…10.04pm and I am finished!