It’s the curse of the working mother – childcare. Quite apart from the costs, there is always that little nagging doubt about what your child is up to all day and how well they are being cared for. I’m reasonably confident about E’s nursery, she seems to enjoy it and although it’s hard to get out of her what she’s been up to there she tends to come home covered in pen/ paint/ glitter/ unknown brightly coloured substances so I take that as a good sign. Just occasionally though, she says something that sends me into a bit of a panic – like last Friday morning.
E had been complaining that she didn’t want to go to nursery, I was pretty sure this was because we’d been talking about going to Granny’s house the next day and she didn’t want to wait, but a part of me was just wondering: what if she’s not happy? Are the staff nice to her? Are the other kids her friends? What if something awful is going on? Then we had this conversation:
E – Mummy – what’s the dog called?
Me- Dog? What dog?
E – The dog in the house with the old Man?
Me- What old man? (OH MY GOD WHAT IS THIS? Are nursery taking her to see an old man with a dog??)
E – The man with the wrinkly eyes and the funny trousers
Me- Er, what do you mean E? (ARGHHHHH! They are taking her to see a dirty old man and his dog! My poor wee girl is being abused. No no there must be an explanation. But this is practically Peckham! It’ll be some murderous, child eating pit bull, OH MY GOD, I’ll have to leave work at once, I’m a horrible, horrible mother)
E- The old man with the dog and the trousers and … the naughty penguin
Me- The what?
E- The naughty penguin and the funny trousers!
Me – We’re talking about Wallis and Gromit aren’t we E?
E- Yes! Gromit!! The dog is called Gromit! Off the tele!!
Me – (deep breath) Oh yes, good, Gromit (8am is too early for a GnT right?)