Thursday, 9 October 2008

Welcoming the Winter

The past week has brought with it the huge turning point of J turning one, and of us moving house - from a flat, to a house with a lovely little garden. It's been a stressful period with us still frantically cleaning the old flat on the morning of the key handover, but thankfully over- I wouldn't recommend moving house with a toddler though!

J is nearly a toddler - he can stand alone and walk with support. His behaviour's becoming more toddler-like by the day- yep, the advent of tantrums and every sign of being strong-willed. His communication is getting better and more sophisticated. He experienced his first moment on stage when I performed with the rest of the Writing Sisters Collective last month at the Horseplay poetry and music event. J did burst into tears during the set when the audience laughed, but other than that he was great. It was good to re-unite with my Sisters in Poetry. Today being National Poetry Day is poignant for me as I am of course at home rather than at a poetry event tonight.

September was a good month. We went up to Cornwall for a very good friend's wedding and to Exeter for a few days to visit family. Me and J and two friends attended the Out of the Ordinary Festival in the Sussex countryside in the first week of September, and it was out of the ordinary indeed - the weather was straight from heaven and the 'sunbow' I witnessed was very special. J loved the fires, the drumming and the general tribal atmosphere. I came back feeling so refreshed and ready to greet the winter!

So here we are in autumn. I've been having a week of irritating encounters with 'petty officials', from the guy who installed our internet and phone line, to the grumpy library official who should NOT be working in the children's section as she clearly does NOT like children (I'm plotting a letter of complaint at the moment, and have several allies on this), and the dentist who couldn't quite get that I didn't want to just suddenly have a filling on the spot with my one year old in tow. Sigh. Unfortunately the last person in the list of grumpy unhelpful people usually doesn't benefit from my people-pleasing tendencies, and is more likely to get a bit of an earful. My Mama Bear instincts came out today when I, and several other moms, were reprimanded for 'letting' our toddlers take children's books off shelves that were so temptingly put in their reach. It was a typical example of how un-child-friendly our society can be. There aren't many places we are welcome with kids in tow, and where it is free to enter, and I thought the library was one of them. I guess not.