Goodbye 2015! It’s been a terrible, unbearable, unacceptable and despicable year filled with all kinds of obstacles at every turn. I, for one, am pleased and relieved that it’s over. I know there is much to be grateful for but all I’m painfully aware of is how I have only one daily thought: will this year actually end?
Now that it has, I’m holding nothing back from shouting my farewell to it.
The last day of 2015 was a regular day for us. The husband went to work and I stayed home with the kids. The morning was rough with Matthew eventually being smacked twice – once on each hand – when he wouldn’t stop going at Emma and refused to acknowledge my threats. Boy, was I angry. Now, the smacks were nothing compared to the canings I used to receive but in this day and age, who knows, they might amount to something that causes him great trauma and stress… God forbid.
After a somewhat fun – but not very appetising – lunch at MacDonald’s (with a photo that now features the two loving children who apparently resemble Precious Moments dolls), we headed to Upper Thomson. I ran an errand while the kids waited at the church bookshop with Daddy.
And here’s the scene I found upon my return:
Augz was on a work call and Matt was his usual self, going berserk and dashing around while Emma was demurely seated on a cast-iron bench right outside the bookshop. She saw me walking towards them – a lone figure approaching in the mid-afternoon angry sun in an otherwise empty church compound and she didn’t take her eyes off me. Those few seconds had me in their grasp, as I felt her gaze and wondered if this girl will ever know me like her brother did, with my complete and undivided attention.
She just sat there watching me walking towards her and I knew, she wouldn’t. She probably doesn’t even recognise that it was her mother, I thought.
But suddenly, her face lit up and still keeping her eyes on me, she ambled off the bench – not very gracefully – and ran towards me. Now, Emma runs with abandonment. She hops, skips and runs. She holds nothing back and just bounces from step to step. Watching her run always fills me with an equal share of thrill (my delight in her) and dread (that she might fall). And there she was, racing to me, all gurgling and happy. She was beaming and looking so priceless, happy and proud that it was Mummy! And I, in turn, was running towards her and caught her in my embrace.
That moment stood still for me. I didn’t notice the father and son. It was my God moment of the day.
Evening came and went with dinner, a fruit platter, some TV, some playtime and we said our goodnight and prayed our last prayer for the year.
Augz and I eventually ended up watching Robert De Niro’s and Anne Hathaway’s “The Intern” at home. In our opinions, the pair saved the show from its lame script and bad cast; otherwise it was a really feel-good show to watch.
Right in the middle of that stay-home-nothing-much-going-on-for-NYE night, the boy who’s been coming over to our room every single night for this whole December holidays, made his entrance with fanfare and crying. He had a bad dream (the other night, he fell asleep for a mere three seconds and awoke, tearfully announcing his bad dream that he got lost and couldn’t find us).
Now here he was, in our room, and we were not about to quit our movie.
So we took him in and shared our space with him. It took five seconds for him to realise he wasn’t going to drift off to bed as he normally does in ours, but to somehow, partake of this late-night movie.
It took me a good half hour of basking in his company and enjoying the quiet, peaceful night to finally realise that I was right in the middle of an experience I had been pining for and waiting for his whole life – to cuddle up with a late-night home movie with my children. All that was still missing was Emma and popcorn. There must always be popcorn. Well, and Emma too!
So goodbye, 2015. Maybe you did come round for me in the end but I like to think this is what happened because you are gone! If this is the way I ushered in the new year – with Emma’s loving embrace and Matt’s first movie night in our bed – then I accept this as a good sign of things to come in 2016.