Friday, 27 July 2012

A Fish out of Water

It’s sunny.  Not just like an occasional ray of sun poking through thick black clouds, but actual sun, blazing down from a cloudless sky.  This has been the case all week which has caused rejoicing and general merriment everywhere I look.  It has not been a welcome occurrence for me.  I am the sort of person whose general capabilities diminish exponentially as the heat goes up.  I have already mentioned in another post, but if it gets up above 20 degrees or so I turn into this gibbering wreck unable to perform the simplest of tasks.  Tying my shoelaces becomes an ordeal that Hercules would have baulked at, writing my name is completely out of the question, and anything that actually requires physical effort is just unthinkable. 

But then something changed.  Our little girl came along.  Last summer she was only six-seven months and wasn’t mobile so the garden wasn’t quite the excitement which it has become.  Now however, she is desperate to be out and about, and absolutely loves the freedom she has running around the garden.  Which has meant that the rain this summer has been particularly unwelcome, our garden, being as it is at the bottom of a hill, has a tendency to fill up rather quickly when the rain comes.  We have whole areas of the garden which could be deployed as a reserve pool in case anything goes wrong with the Aquatics Centre in London, I would even be prepared to knock up a makeshift podium out of matchboxes and sticky back plastic if they needed the garden for any medal presentations.  I’m also pretty sure that given a little bit of practice N and I could belt out most of the national anthems for the major nations, although I think her personal favourite might be “Yumi, yumi, yumi”  Vanuatu’s national anthem. I don’t think they have sent over a large swimming contingent however.  She needs a bit of work on her tuning, but no one can doubt her enthusiasm for singing, and she does go right to the heart of most songs.  She has recently been introduced to a certain nursery rhyme, and though she doesn’t have all of the words, you know what she’s going for when she bellows out, “three mice runnin’, three mice runnin’,” at the top of her voice. 

That was a long paragraph, let’s try to get back on track shall we?  Having rained pretty well everyday since the beginning of June, thus rendering our garden completely out of action, it has finally got hot.  Which has meant that N can now really enjoy charging round the garden.  What has tipped the enjoyment over the edge however (though not to quite the extent of Boris Johnson’s Olympic mania geiger counter, really, “zoink,” what was he thinking?) is the fact that we have been able to get the paddling pool out.  She does love the paddling pool.  And clearly getting wet doesn’t bother her in the slightest, fully clothed, wellies firmly on she will charge into the water soaking herself, her parents, and anyone else that gets within her orbit. 

Which is how, earlier on today, I found myself, also fully clothed, being dragged into the pool with her.  And then being ordered, nay, forcibly conscripted, into sitting on the edge of the pool whilst she merrily threw pre-wet balls at me, and poured water out of her wellies all over me.  I was soaked, she was soaked, the sun was out and we were both loving it.  And it hit me.  Not just the ball she had just thrown at me, but an epiphany.  Life had changed.  All too often I find myself thinking about how having our daughter has closed opportunities for us, things are just more complicated and the range of things that it is appropriate to do with a little one feels very slim, but now and then you find yourself doing something, and enjoying it, that you would have never done without having a child, something, in fact, that I couldn’t ever have believed I would have enjoyed.

So thank you little girl, you’ve given me a new experience and opened my eyes.  Just think of what we could be doing tomorrow.  Now, how does that anthem go again?  

1 comment:

  1. There is such a lot you can't do once you have a child, even less when there's more than one of it. Before you know it though, she'll be leaving home and you'll be longing for these halcyon days.