Getting up was so difficult today I almost did not bother.If I had been given a choice or my children had shown a degree of compassion, I would be there yet. I finessed my sons into the sofa infront of a video in the hope of another couple of precious pillow minutes. It is not that I regard the television as an unpaid childminder; it's more of a dear family friend.The baby, however, is made of sterner stuff than the boys. She was awake. I had to be awake. I had brought her in to feed but after that, she was a lot keener to get on with the day than I was. I steadfastly refused to move; eventually, she clambered out of the large carved bed, clinging on to the sheet and lowering herself carefully on to the floor where she discovered my handbag. I did a mental review of whether she might find an ecstasy tablet, prompting horrified headlines and a visit from an under-paid, over-anxious social worker. I decided it was unlikely since I have never bought an ecstasy tablet. I have tried. Apparently, they do not sell them to the middle-aged. Reluctantly, I opened one eye to check she was still there and had not crawled off to fling herself down the stairs. She was standing by the bed, watching me. Next to me was a pile of money lying on the mattress - every note and coin I had loose in my bag. I felt cheap. I do not think a 15-month-old baby should feel she has to bribe her mother to get out of bed.
I got lost again today. I think that getting lost is becoming a metaphor. It is happening so often, I think part of me wants to get lost. Maybe if I got lost enough, I would one day, find myself on the fringes of London. Then I could ring and say: "You'll never guess what. I got lost. Guess where I am. I don't think I can find my way back." What made it worse was that my children noticed. I hate it when they notice I am lost. I think it diminishes their respect for me, which is probably low enough already now they pay me to get up. My six-year-old said loudly: "Mummy you are going the wrong way." I denied this. "I really think you have gone wrong mummy." Ofcourse, he was quite right. As I slewed the car round, narrowly missing a horse box, he said: "I was going to say something, but I won't." I pulled back on to the hedged and narrow road. "What were you going to say darling?" I looked back at him through the rearview mirror. "I was going to say 'I told you so'," he said. I could see the tiniest smile as he glanced down at his toy puppy, "but I decided not to."