Tuesday night. We had got some stressful work days out of the way; we had got some camping with friends out of the way; all three of us were fit and healthy (sleep deprivation, as always, aside) … conditions were perfect (as Jemaine says at 0:40).
At 7.30 I gave Maja a bath. She sat there with her stubby little legs out in front of her, slick little tummy breaching the piles of fragrant white bubbles, little fingers playing with her scrubbing brush. I washed her hair, and her ringlets got dark and long and shiny and her face took on this cherubic aspect that seldom presents itself to me when she’s racing round the house during the day, a ball of fluffy energy.
She looked up at me with huge starry eyes, dismayed that I’d insisted on the hair-washing but trusting in me, somehow: trusting. Absolutely putting her faith in me; believing that my decisions concerning her health and wellbeing are correct and morally sound.
You know where I’m going with this, right?
At 8 pm I snuggled her into her sleep sack and kissed her little face and the soles of both her wee feet (I can’t remember how or when this ritual developed) and said ‘Goodnight, Maja’ and told her I loved her, repeated the routine for two teddies, and settled down to feed her to sleep like I always do. Realising perhaps more fully than I ever have before how much tranquillity and slow-spreading contentment I get out of doing this, too.
At 8.20 pm I went out and watched Episode 8 of True Blood with Mr A and the blundering melodrama of the Authority storyline pissed me off increasingly but there was some excellent werewolf sex and our cups of tea were warm and our chocolate biscuits were sweet and we were snuggled up together … and everything was just right. And Mr A said ‘So, tonight. Are we doing this …?’
But he already knew the answer.
Meanwhile, I continue to wake up feeling as exhausted as I used to feel after a long hard deadline-day at the office, and I realised yesterday that I’d made a stupid mistake in my work that I never would have made in the past, just because of tiredness, and it all seems to imply that there is something here to be fixed … doesn’t it?