Can mummy please eat her lunch in peace?
It’s become a bit of a joke (hear me laugh), that whenever I sit down to eat breakfast (inhale some yoghurt and fruit) or lunch (gulp down a bowl of soup with the remains of the kids’ packed lunches), the children suddenly need me urgently.
Sometimes there’s been a head-bump or a finger-squash, or maybe there’s been a squabble, a scratch or a disagreement over the toys that has to be sorted that minute. But, 99 times out of 100, it’s for a pooh.
It’s like my own bum hitting the kitchen chair sends an immediate signal to the children’s bowels to open.
And if there’s one thing I really hate about parenting, it’s getting up from a meal that was only ever going to be a few minutes long anyway, to bend over the loo and wipe a stinky bum.
Sometimes they do it in tandem so I have to get up three or four times in my 10-minute lunch as they change their minds over whether or not they need me (DD) or whether or not they’re actually finished (DS).
Mealtimes are such a small, but enjoyable, part of the day for me. Sitting down with the Daily Mail online and something reasonably nice to eat is a small island of pleasure in an otherwise demanding day when it seems that everyone wants a piece of me. Together, breakfast and lunch take up a total of about 20 minutes. Is it too much to ask to be left alone for that little bit of “time out” in the 13 or 14 hours I’m on mummy duty?
I’m beginning to wonder.