The festival I have been involved in is over so I planned a kind of wind-down weekend. However, it was, of course, Halloween and I hadn’t really prepared, except for getting everyone to design their zombie princess outfits. So Saturday began with a brief trip to Claire’s Accessories for a Morticia wig [big girl daughter], skeleton gloves [rebel daughter] and green nail varnish and red hair spray [bonkers daughter]. We spent the whole afternoon excavating pumpkins, drawing witch posters for pin the hat on the witch, getting the bobbing apples ready and decorating tights with cobwebs and putting together the zombie outfits. My partner had some friends coming round so he was at the pub. Good move!
By 6pm rebel daughter was a goth with red back-combed hair and full zombie make-up and bonkers and big girl daughters went for the Michael Jackson Thriller bride of Dracula look with lots of back-combed hair and fake blood. I went as zombie mum. It didn’t really require a lot of make-up. Just a bit more shadows under the eyes and some red hair. There is one house on our street that really loves Halloween. They have cobwebs on the hedges, fake gravestones and the door creaks and then there is a hollow laugh from inside. It is very good value. Big girl daughter wouldn’t let go of my hand throughout. We had to leave my partner’s friends at home while we went trick or treating and, unfortunately, they couldn’t open the front door so they had to post sweets through the door for the neighbours’ kids. We retired home for some games and then bonkers daughter went to a party. At bedtime, she decided to inform me that she was not feeling herself and that she felt like she was missing something. This meant a long chat, but one which didn’t actually uncover the source of her alienation from her true self, except that she had not been invited to sleep over at her friend’s party. Meanwhile, rebel daughter was shivering and had developed a high temperature and a potentially sudden cough [just like it says on NHS Direct for the swine flu, although she had had a sore throat earlier in the week]. We dosed her up and cooled her head, but she was still burning up. I moved a mattress into her room and slept on the floor, checking her all night then big girl daughter came in in the middle of the night.
Sunday was spent in total sloth. Rebel daughter seemed a bit better. We all stayed in watching films and de-nitting all day. I read an article about another high profile journalist quitting her job because she never gets to see her child. It seems crazy that we have invented a world where one of the major things humans do – parenting – is impossible in so many jobs. I bet guinea pigs wouldn’t have done that! Speaking of guinea pigs, we got them in in anticipation of Bonfire Night and then we watched X Factor, which is beginning, at last, to lose its appeal for me. It’s just boring, really. All those people wanting to be pumped into the star system singing boring love songs. I have been playing the Jam really loudly to the girls every time we get in the car.