Wednesday, 22 July 2015

Unashamed Under Six

My son has a superb knack of delivering cringe-worthy one-liners in public. The kind where I'd dare not make eye contact with another adult for fear of judgement, or maybe because I can feel them smiling. Which would make me smile (or worse, laugh). Which would make my job of explaining his public faux pas to him even more difficult.

We were in the car he spotted a random black man walking his dog and exclaimed, "That must be Granddad!" Of course, this is my fault for not submitting him to enough cultural diversity. Thus followed an explanation of skin colour and the fact that there is more than one black man on the planet.

Messy boy covered in Vaseline
Vaseline. Everywhere.
Tonight he casually told me, "Mum, I've put toothpaste on my willy." Firstly, I thought, 'thank you for the information'. Secondly,  I was counting the seconds, waiting for the 'Aaargh it stings! Get it off! Get it off!" But, nothing....Luckily, toothpaste for children doesn't pack much of a punch when it comes to minty freshness. I calmly removed the tube from reach. I don't want another Vaseline incident. That was rubbed liberally all over his body, my floor, the doors, my walls, his bedsheets....and then he had the audacity to complain that he was 'too greasy to sleep'. One of his best bedtime excuses to date.

Now, the public declarations regarding the state of his privates or toilet functions? They're the most challenging. I took him to Legoland at the weekend. There was a particular ride he said he wanted to go on because it made his 'peanuts feel funny'. He sat in between a dad and a little girl. The dad must've cursed about his nether region, because my son was there, springing up and down, yelling at the top of his lungs "GONADS!!!" repeatedly. I was watching with my sister and a couple of parents who were giving me sideways glances. However, when I did get the chance to ask him what he had been yelling he innocently responded with, "Doughnuts". I'm not sure if that's much of an improvement.

In a pub recently was his finest moment (and my worst). He asked me how to spell 'or'. Little did I know that this was part of a longer word in relation to the drawing he had just finished:
"Here we go Mum! I've drawn a 'cock-or-too'!! And I've written 'cockortoo' here, see? Look, 'cock-or-too'."

Children will embarrass us. It's in their very nature, and I cannot wait to return the favour when he's a teenager. I now understand the devilish grin my mum would give me when she knew she was doing something that would embarrass me.

Tomorrow is his last day of his first year at school. I'm really pleased with his school report; he has exceeded expectations in over a third of the areas monitored. So although he may humiliate me at an opportune moment, I'm also incredibly proud of his development since the start of the school year. It's great to see the enthusiasm with which he'll express a new topic he has learnt that day.

Of course, the patience, attentiveness and guidance of the teachers and his one-to-one support assistants has been unparalleled. He's grown so much in the last few months and I can't wait for the growth (and embarrassments) waiting for me for the next year.

I would never want him to be reserved about speaking his mind, and I often believe he has a deeper insight on subjects than most adults. I only hope the time will come when I won't have to get into a deep discussion about the gender roles in reproduction when he blurts out, "I love Nick Fury, he's my baby-mumma".

Thursday, 16 July 2015

An open Letter to Discriminatory Recruiters and Employers

Dear Recruiter,

I am quite annoyed by your question regarding my son and I find it incredibly insulting. Your comment was demeaning to my professional expertise and belittles my incredible work ethic and experience, which has absolutely nothing to do with my ability to birth a child.

You have absolutely no right to ask about my family and 'how I will handle it'. I have been working full-time for years with a child, and guess what? I am a single mother too! It's illegal to discriminate on the grounds of sex. I am sure you wouldn't have asked a man with a child: "Is 'it' going to cause problems?"

I would formally like to withdraw my application from this role, and certainly do not wish to work for a company if this is their attitude.

I would also like to be removed from your database.

I suggest you consider a little more professionalism when speaking to hard working, intelligent, forward thinking candidates, and remember that this is the 21st century.

Please do not contact me again.

Regards,

Modern Single Mum