Me: Remember I’m going to Perth for a week’s work tomorrow, which means you can’t stay home here alone, you gotta go back to Dad’s. Him: Mum, I’m nearly 18, I can look after myself… Me: You’re not 18! You only just turned 17; you’re still too young. PAUSE Him: I’m 17 and a half actually. Me: [counting months on my fingers] OK, you’re 17 and 4 months… LONG PAUSE Him: Well, in my mind I’m already 30, so what’s your point Mum?
The Scene: Palm trees swaying, blue sky shining, ridiculous rainbow-coloured birds squawking, plus me, dozing in bed in Australia, in that moment before being fully conscious. Me: Mmmmmmmm, I think I’m awake. Evil Elf Who Lives In My Brain And Synced To My Smartphone (now known as EVIE): What time is it? Better check your phone. Me: Nah, today’s Sunday, and I’m having a tech-free morning. EVIE: What!? When did you decide that?? Dumb idea. Just check your phone. Me: No. I’m simply going to lie here, listening to the birds. PAUSE EVIE: How hot d’you reckon it is? Maybe you should check the weather app? Me: NO. PAUSE EVIE: Maybe you got a late text from ’17’, and he needs picking up soon? Or what if ‘H’ sent something romantic/sexy first thing? Me: True. But they’ll still be there after I’ve had a pot of peppermint tea and meditated. I just want a peaceful tech-free hour. EVIE: An hour! But… but… don’t you need to check your WordPress stats? Me: Nah. It’s Sunday, and …
Him: I hate it when you wear your hair in bunches like that. Me: Deal with it dude [*rolling my eyes]. LATER Me [rushing in from verandah where I’ve been reading quietly]: Oh my god, did you see that? A bird nearly flew into my head!? Him [without looking up from his book]: I told you, it’s that hairstyle, it makes you a target.
Him: One more week of school then I’m on holidays for a month. Me: [In hopeful tone] But we’re still doing fortnight on/fortnight off aren’t we? Him: Not a chance Mum! At Dad’s I have to live on cereal all day; being here is like staying at some kind of foodie resort… I ain’t going anywhere…
Him: ‘Mum look, I’ve created a Study Nook! I’m so going to get on top of my assignments.’ Me [Looking at my now un-useable spare room, complete with blocked access to my linen cupboard, and removal of my only bedside lamp plus the living room coffee table]: ‘That’s great Honey…’ ONE WEEK LATER Me [Having taken back my bedside light, and moved the coffee table so I can get sheets & towels out]: ‘How’s the study going?’ Him: ‘Well I can’t work now that my habitat has been destroyed.’
Me: Whatcha doin’? H: Baking a lime cake Me [having sent approx 25 various unrequited selfies of me & cat/me & food/me & sunsets]: Oooh, send me a pic! H:
*sigh The Jacksons say it best Home 5 days, and still feel not quite here. Sleep is crap, creativity is pretty crap, and my ‘warm flushes’ seem to be getting hotter… I’ve had half a dozen ideas for blog posts, but can’t seem to find the motivation or discipline to get them down and out *sigh Even the teenager has not been inspiring, funny, or sweet, so I can’t default to using him *deep sigh Normal transmission will be resumed shortly (I hope)
Me: You know, some of my friends can’t believe I still make your lunch every day for school. *Pause Him: I think that’s a bit rough Mum… it hardly even rates as a snack really.