Today was my biggest kids first sports day. It was the perfect plaster to put over my heartbreak, and I spent two hours surrounded by other parents and grandparents cheering on all the kids in good spirits.
My daughter has been practising in nursery for a few weeks. “I’ve been doing the egg race Mummy”. “The egg and spoon race?” “No, the egg race”. Good. I’m glad she had her tactics worked out early. The nursery and reception were split into various insects and their corresponding colours. We were in the orange butterflies. Hooray! Much more favourable than the grey woodlice (I kid you not!).
The kids walked on in their teams accompanied by “Eye of the Tiger” on the loudspeaker, and Jason Manford (his kids go to the same school) comparing with some child-friendly jokes. The kids were pepped up, the parents were trying to find that balance between being supportive and being pushy, and the races began. The kids were sat in team rows, and after a while, I noticed a little boy shuffling up very close to my daughter. Very close. To my amusement, he started to groom her and then wrapped his arms around her in a tight embrace. My kid was not too pleased with the interaction, and starting inching away, lip quivering. Undeterred, the little boy shuffled back up to her, and started playing with her hair again, and this continued for more or less the whole morning, the boy’s Mum apologising profusely for her tactile son, and me a little bit proud that my girl was aware of the My Body, My choice campaign! Oh, and as a surprise, the underdog woodlice came 3rd! Go team grey!
When we got home, I decided it would be a good time to talk to her about our decision to put Magic to sleep yesterday. We aren’t religious, so talking about god or heaven wasn’t on the cards, but I didn’t realise how tricky it would be…
Me – Have you realised who isn’t here today?
Daughter – Ummm. Daddy?
M – No. Daddy is at school. It’s Magic.
D – *looks around unconvinced*
M – Do you remember that I was very sad yesterday because Magic was poorly?
D – Yes…..
M – Well Daddy and I took her to the vets last night to put her to sleep.
D – Good. She will feel better after a sleep.
M – No sweetheart. Magic won’t be coming home, She was very poorly.
D – Yes, but I go to sleep every night and I feel better.
M – *realises the mistake of using the word sleep. panic* No lovely. Magic died.
D – Magic dyed?
M – Yes, she was ever so poorly, and we didn’t want her to be sad anymore.
D – *confused* What colour?
M – *equally as confused* Ummmmmm.
D – You dyed her for work.
M – Oh. No. Sweetheart. Um. Magic is dead.
D – Magic is DEAD? *looks horrified*
M – *inwardly cringing* She was very poorly. She won’t be coming home, and the vet put her to sleep.
D – She will feel better after a sleep.
M – She’s not going to come home, my love.
D – Oh look! A Fly. FLY AWAY FLY!!!! *runs off, clearly bored with the conversation*
I somehow think I’m not going to win parent of the year this year!!!!