uh I am 42 this year and my kids will be seven and four. Of course, like all children, mine our desperate to get to the next milestone and be grown up, I only wish they’d appreciate what they’d got now. What mum wouldn’t her give her most prized possession (in my case an uninterrupted cup of tea) for?
A party every weekend but no hangovers! I spend 90% of my weekends driving the kids to various soft play; community centre; swimming parties. The venue or theme don’t really matter. What they get is two hours of total freedom with few rules, lots of cake and a great time with their friends. OK I don’t fancy my pelvic floor’s chances on a bouncy castle but what I wouldn’t give to be chauffeured around to meet my best mates every weekend to indulge in our favourite things. And another thing, the after-effects of too much sugar are so much easier to deal with than too much gin!
The chance to wear fancy dress whenever you want. If my daughter isn’t in her school uniform or PJs she is in fancy dress. The current favourite is Cinderella but we’ve had the Frozen girls, Snow White, Supergirl and Harry Porter in recent weeks. Oh to have the freedom to fully inhabit a make-believe world – even down to what you wear. She regularly follows me round the supermarket dressed as a princess and everyone seems to smile and think it’s cute. If I attempted to wander down the frozen aisle dressed as Elsa (bad pun – sorry!) I assume I’d be escorted off the premises by the nearest security guard! I want the confidence to be able to wear what I want when I want – who cares if the Gruffalo outfit isn’t usual boardroom where – at least it would get me noticed and it would be whole lot more comfy than a suit!
A cuddly best friend. My daughter’s best friend is Billy Bob – the teddy her nana bought her when she was born and that she sleeps with every night. Billy Bob rarely comes out with us (the thought of losing him makes me feel sick) but he is always by her side. If she’s upset or ill the Bobster is the first family member she turns to and whenever her confidence dips she knows she can leave him on the stairs so he’s waiting for her when she gets home. Yes, I have friends and a husband who will give me hugs when I need them but how nice would it be to have such love for an inanimate object that will always be there.
A fun bath. I love a bubble bath, a glass of wine and a good book but I wish I could capture some of the joy my kids have at bathtrime. Playing make believe games, pouring water from one container into another and firing water pistols turn getting washed into half an hour of hilarity. When did the bathroom become a quiet sanctuary? On reflection it’s one of the rare times you can really get wet and wild.
A love of snow. I hate snow. I am so miserable that my friend had to come round to build my daughter’s first snowman with her because I refused to go out in it. But to a child snow isn’t cold, wet and inconvenient, it’s pure magical fun! Sledging, snowball fights and snowmen bring a smile to every kids’ face. I only wish my heart would soar when the temperature plummets.
A belief my prince will come. I know some parents disagree with fairy tales, especially Disney, claiming they teach our daughters that they need to be rescued by a man and can’t sort out their problems for themselves but I have to disagree. The reality of life as a woman struggling to maintain a career, juggle a family and make her mark will come all too quickly for my daughter. So for now what’s wrong with living a fairy story, believing in true love and happy endings? Disney also teaches us that good always triumphs over evil and we all need a best friend (name one Disney hero or heroine who doesn’t have a trusty sidekick) and I’m more than happy for my kids to indulge in those lessons. I only wish adult life could be more like a fairy tale, wouldn’t the world be a better place if we’d all retained a bit of that dewy eyed wonder and innocence.