Belling The Cat
A baby adds to your life by leaps and bounds. Objects you have never seen before, activities you never thought you would do without an “Ew” and emotions you thought only Karan Johar capable of. As the baby grows up, more gets added to the potpourri of nouns, verbs and other kinds I speak of.
But something gets subtracted too as soon as a baby takes his rightful place to sleep between you and your beau. I think you know what I mean. And yes, I am entering your bed room right this minute, as I tell you about mine.
Roll all extra carpets and put them away. Forget how comfortable and bouncy the couch in the living room was to accommodate two together. And if once you took Nike’s ‘Just Do It’ to heart and got it tattooed somewhere on your being it’s time to rub it off – especially the nonchalant ‘Just’. Let the ‘Do it’ remain as a reminder, an alarm clock of sorts which will ring with glee-n-hurry the moment it sees a moment away from the baby’s eyes, or a child’s curiosity.
Stage 1 – Gaga-googoo, no do-do
When babies come to occupy pride of place there is just no time, place, space, energy to “be a couple together” (I’ll keep it clean). The intention of doing it will never cease to exist, but all else will conspire to keep you feeling like a priest, or a nun. And no, that cannot be satisfying to the well-being, especially when means of recreation have anyway been reduced to seeing the rattle go rattle-rattle or the bouncy ball make squeaky sounds (I’m trying, I’m trying to keep it clean!).
Of course, the joy of a successful burp or poop, or the last spoonful of baby mush being eaten is a satisfaction in itself. But then, man is an animal with his own set of, more often than not, very demanding instincts. Hence, the ‘Do it’ when you can. Morning, noon, afternoon, evening and/or post-midnight – dance on chance, for there’s no time like any free time available. And hurry, they might be ready for the next feed sooner than you realise. You do not want to confuse squeals with screams and vice versa, even if both are the hungry kinds.
Stage 2 – The What-Why-How-Huh child
As they become young children, the birds and bees do not suffice to ebb that fountain of curiosity and are shooed off unceremoniously by their growing hands and minds. Add to that feet which can carry them to your room, at any divine albeit ungodly hour, and enough reasons exist for you to turn red, or very red, depending on the degree of undress (I give up on keeping it clean!). I am yet to reach that stage when midnight nightmares will find my boy scampering into my quilt, or Sunday afternoons will be spent with 3 cooks playing carrom, rather than one cook in a deep nap and 2 others, well, cooking a feast.
But I can imagine, already. Oh! Do not wait for the midnight hour to strike. If you haven’t belled the cat sleeping in the other room, there’s always a chance of an encounter of the embarrassing kind, like I just said. Also, if you thought HBO will air something inspiring to open your groggy eyes and whet that emotion once the 9-year-old has retired for the day, think again. The last I checked, Harry Potter was doing something with a broom at 11:30 in the night, and Jackie Chan was kicking ass in those clean and green movies we call Chinese. No, no inspiration there to open your sleepy eyes, et cetera in bed.
Stage 3 – I-know-what-you-did-last-night smarty pants
I do not know about you, but I totally chew all my nails off just thinking of having a teenager in the house. Just how are we going to do it? Alright. The idea of space will be better defined and the modern concept of privacy better understood. (To think that private chambers in palaces had sheer curtains, only!) But what about telling signs of things that conspired between his parents’ pair of romantic socks the previous night?
A blush here a nudge there a wink that was for me, but all three seen by my 15-year-old too, over breakfast the morning after. Hai Ram! To top it all (no pun), today’s national daily thought it wise enough to print a large (you dirty mind!) advert on its front page which reads – ‘Love stays longer than the love bites.’ I say, love bites too can stay long enough for your teenager’s prying eyes. And no, I doubt if you can pass them off as pimples by the time he has some of his own. Perhaps a drop of calamine might help to conceal matters a little, till the next one rears its head (absolute pervert you are!)
And as I gradually find myself lapsing into words that might bring the censor board knocking on my door, I shall close the bedroom’s door till another time. But like they say, there is always a moral to the story. While I’m still on Stage 1, I have had my eureka moment, already. I have finally understood why husbands and wives start resembling each other by the time they are 60. Cannot expect genes to take their course if the issues become such an issue that a couple has to stay like a brother sister duo.
Oh well! Rakshabandhan is around the corner. Maybe I can earn some money out of him. And no fear of my 2-year-old watching over this exchange, at least!
Sakshi Nanda went from studying Literature to serving the print media and finally settling with two publishing houses who called her editor for a couple of hard-bounds, no more! She writes as a work-from-home mother to realize herself as well as to be read, both – with her 2-year-old boy and her sarkari babu beau as the greatest source of ideas and inspiration. She believes eating baby food is therapeutic and that the pen is man’s best invention, after diapers that is! Meet her at: sakshinanda.blogspot.in