He walked in the front door shortly after 5pm and I was surprised to say the least. I double checked the time on both the wall clock and my watch to make sure that my eyes weren’t playing tricks on me. But no, it was definitely happening. My knight in shining armour (ok…a middle aged dude in a shirt and tie) had come home early to help out with the afternoon and early evening routine.
“What do you need me to do first” Mr Patient asked me cautiously.
“You could start by running the boys a bath” I ventured.
“Alrighty then fair maiden” he answered in that adorable but frustrating echolalic way that he does as he headed for the bathroom scooping up one of the giggling boys on his way.
It didn’t take long.
Actually, it was probably only about three minutes before I was summoned. Coming down the hallway in a pitiful tone was a faint but distinct…...”Fiiiiiiiiiiii”
I rolled my eyes and put down the onion I was chopping for dinner and made my way to the scene of the chaos.
“Where is the bubble bath”? He asks innocently.
I reached up on the shelf only centimetres above him and handed it to him and walked back to the kitchen.
Seconds later I heard it again.
I ignored it this time hoping he would give up.
“Fiiiiiiiii” he calls out much louder.
“What?” I scream back “I’m busy”
“Where is the plug?” he calls out sheepishly.
“In the top drawer – I saw Lucas playing with it earlier so I hid it from him so he didn’t fill the tub up when I wasn’t looking”. I yelled back impatiently and went back to chopping.
I swear it was only a minute later when he bellows out again….”Fiiiiiii” but this time in a much more desperate petition.” I neeeeeeed you”.
I throw the remains of the half chopped zucchini into the pot on the stove and glance at the clock. Only 7 minutes has passed and I have been called on 3 times. The boys are still running half naked around the house and the tension and noise levels are rising rapidly.
“Yes P” I snap angrily with my hands on my hips “What now?”
“Would you please help me catch Lucas so I can bath him. Quick, there he goes…..corner him”.
I grab the offending child, strip the remainder of his clothes off him in one swift motion ignoring the protests and ducking the kicking and hurl him into the water.
“Wow”, he says obviously impressed “How about you bath the boys and I’ll go cook dinner”.
“Fine” I lift Lucas out and dry him off then send him out to the heater with his pyjamas, singlet and underpants that I’d already laid out for him earlier and clear and precise instructions on how to dress himself.
I grab Harley in much the same fashion and bath and dry him and send him out to his brother so he can finish getting ready for bed too.
I let the water out of the bathtub and walked back to the kitchen to see how dinner is coming along and I find Mr Patient sitting at the computer, vegetables still on the chopping board where I left them and two completely naked boys playing lets-see-who-can-flick-each-other-the-hardest-with-our-wet-towels giggling hysterically.
“Thanks for coming home early and helping out with the evening madness honey” I call out sarcastically.
“Oh no problem, glad I could help” he answers oblivious to my ire!
“Oh, by the way” I add venomously….“If you ask me why the kids haven’t yet downe any homework – I’ll bloody flatten you!”
“Wouldn’t dream of it love….wouldn’t dare” he says with a kiss on the cheek.
I shook my head and went back to the veggie chopping and with every slice, dice and chop that those poor vegetables endured I felt my frustration start to evaporate.