Today, I needed Baby G to sleep. I had a lot of work to do and not much time. We spent the morning doing ‘special girl stuff’ like ballet and playing princesses with her best little friend EVER in the whole wide world, we ate lunch and I popped her into bed for a nap at midday, confident that I’d get an hour of work done as she slept.
Baby G, of course, insisted on napping in a purple fairy dress and ballet shoes – so she could have fairy dreams. Of course. I kissed her goodnight, wished her the fairyest of all fairy dreams and ran off to the study to work.
Naturally, after fifteen minutes, I heard movement.
I sneaked down the passage to her bedroom and there she was, dancing in front of the mirror to Baby Mozart and declaring to her teddies that she was, without doubt, the prettiest fairy princess of all time. When she looked up and saw me, a look of pure panic registered on her face.
I really needed her to sleep.
I really needed to work.
I was really really (really) tempted to let Dora the Explorer babysit.
But those eyes. Big, brown doe eyes looking at me, waiting for the verdict. And I realised that I am everything to this little three-year-old girl. She trusts me completely to make the right decisions for her. Big ones – like what she eats, where she will go to school and whether or not to vaccinate her – and little ones alike.
I decided that work could wait.
Baby G and I gathered her Toys R Us tea set and set up a tray with two plates of teddy bear biscuits, a pot and two tea cups. We made peanut butter sandwiches and cut them up into heart shapes. And let me tell you, we enjoyed the most ladylike (and fairylike) of all tea parties.
It was a little decision. But one day Miss G might just remember the fun she had at home playing tea parties with Mum when she should have been sleeping. And I’ll know that in that tiny ‘blink of an eye’ window, when she was exactly 3 and a half, I took the time to bathe in the innocence of my baby girl in a purple fairy dress, dipping tiny teddy biscuits into pretend tea.
Sometimes the little decisions count the most.