Thursday, February 21, 2013


It happens almost every night.

4:37am, my eyes pop open, and I am immediately, irrevocably, awake.

I've no idea what wakes me up, but there I am.

My mind starts racing, followed by my heart. I lie awake, trying desperately to slow everything down so that I can get back to sleep.

I check the clock. I get up and go to the bathroom. I check the clock again. I lay down and try to regain some of my stolen blankets. I sigh. I check the clock again. I play tetris in my head. This reminds me of when Beege was a baby. Which reminds me that neither of them are babies anymore. I wonder what they will be like when they are grown. I wonder if I can keep them safe until they get there. I wonder if I can let them go. I wonder if they will come back. I wonder if I am good enough.

The good thoughts are getting eaten by the bad ones, and I try to distract myself.

Eventually, I start writing in my head.

Text appears across my eyelids as though I'm typing it on a screen. The letters disappearing and reappearing as ideas change shape. I can tell I'm starting to fall asleep when the words become animals. They start wiggling off the page and confusing the issue. Middle of the night brilliance; lost in the jungle.

Every sound pops my eyelids back open. And if I don't shut them again quickly enough, my heart starts thumping, and I need to start the whole process over.

Fast forward to 7:37. I am supposed to get up now. This is when people are supposed to be up. I have things to do. GET UP!

I hit snooze now, and fall back into a deep slumber. I register the pale morning sunlight, and avert my eyes as I sink back into the pillow. My body is so heavy that it feels wrong to try and move.

Monday, February 11, 2013


Beege has really gotten into Pokemon lately. I don't get it, but she loves them. The show, the video games, the books; all of it. She talks about it incessantly. I'm trying very hard to pay attention, because I want her to know that she can talk to me about anything at all... but it's just so boring.

Anyway. One day, Beege came out of her room and asked what an "arch nemesis" is, because some Pokemon guy has got one. "Well, an arch nemisis is what someone might call their very worst enemy. Someone who is constantly causing them trouble."

Kee was sitting on my lap during this discussion, and once Beege had gone back to her room, she turned to me and said, very seriously, "I have one of those, Mummy."

His name, is Baxter.

I first heard about him on the way home from school one day.

"So how was your day, honey?"
"Fine. We played in the gym."
"Yeah? What did you play?"
"Freeze tag."
"Was it fun?"
"Why not?"
"I was frozed the whole time! Nobody unfreezed me! Even, even, even I called them, and they didn't, because that BASTER told them not to!"
For a second, I wondered where she'd heard the word "bastard", as it's not one anyone in our house uses, and I'm pretty sure that they don't use that kind of language on TVO kids.

Then I realised, she must mean Baxter. Every other day, I hear how THAT BASTER has done something else. He wouldn't let her sit with Amy. He told the kids at recess that she was a princess who "stoled" something and they should all be police and chase her. He told her that carrots were a "yucky" snack.

All, apparently, unforgivable things. 

The root of the problem appears to be Amy. Kee decided very early on that Amy was her very, very best friend, and that she wanted to be with her all the time. So did Baxter.

We've talked about it a bit; how he's not her enemy, and that they could both play with Amy, and that if they really can't, maybe they should try taking turns playing with Amy.

But there is this perverse part of me that keeps thinking that, if she has to have an "arch nemisis", how perfect it is that his name is  Baxter.