Friday, April 10, 2015

I is for ingenious

So Viv flew off to the US yesterday on a two-week business trip. I dread it when he's travelling because for some reason, Xena choses to be at her difficult best when her Poppy is not there. She refuses to eat, refuses to drink milk, refuses to nap and is generally more difficult to manage.

He's the one who puts her to sleep at night, so that's the part I struggle with the most because for about an hour, even though she's tired and lying on the bed in a darkened room, she keeps asking where he is, and why he went, and why he didn't take us, and whether he will be back the next day.

Last night, I had a deadline and I knew that I couldn't afford to sit there next to her as she took an hour to fall asleep. So I told her that she's now 4 and a big responsible girl and yada yada yada and she needed to learn to fall asleep by herself. I tucked her into bed and kept the bathroom light on so the bedroom was dimly lit. Then I told her that I'd be working in the dining room just outside and would keep coming back to check on her. Strangely, she only protested a little.

"But what will I do here all by myself?"


"But I don't want to sleep. Where's my dad?"

"Dad is on a flight."

"Then what do I do now?"

"Sing. Or count." I said with an air of finality and left the room.

To my utter surprise, I heard her singing softly for a while and then counting. Suddenly, there was complete silence. I thanked my stars and started work.

After I'd finished just about one chapter, I heard her loud and clear and awake as ever.

"Mama? Where's my dad?"

"Dad is on a flight. Sleep, baby."

"Mama, I'm here all by myself. Please come and sit here."

I'd promised her that I'd be popping in and out so I went back in and sat next to her.

"Mama, where's my dad?"

*deep breath*

"Dad is on a flight. He will be back in two weeks."

"Then who will put me to sleep?"

"You will do it by yourself."

"Why aren't you sleeping?"

"Because I need to work."

"But why?"

"Because I have to finish the set of proofs that came in today."

"Is courier uncle coming tomorrow to pick them up?" (Yep, she's familiar with the process.)

"Yes, he is coming in the morning, so I need to finish them tonight."

"But why?"

"Because if I don't finish them, then he will come and say, 'Oh noooooo, Xena's Mama has not finished her work!!'"

"Then what will he take to Editor aunty?"


"Then what will happen?"

"Editor aunty will say, 'Hmmm... Xena's Mama did not finish her work. I will not pay her fee.'"

"What is 'pay her fee'?"

"Give her money."

"She will not give you money?"

"That's right."

"Why do you need money?"

"Umm... We need money to buy things. If Poppy and Mama don't work, then we will have no money."

"Then what will happen?"

"Then we will not be able to buy things."

"What things?"

"Milk and food and clothes and shoes..."

She seemed quite concerned at the idea. She thought for a few seconds.

"Mama, I have a great idea!"


"We can just use the money that is in your wallet!"

"That is a great idea indeed. Yes, we can buy some things with that money. But what will we do after we spend all of it?"

She thought for some more time.

"Mama, I have another great idea!"


"We can just go to the bank and buy some more money!!!"


Anonymous said...

The world would be a much better place if we let kids make up the rules, no? :D

Stephen Tremp said...

Maybe we'll try a Kids Day and let them call the shots for 24 hours. Of course, they'll have to be responsible for the consequences too.

Stephen Tremp
A to Z Co-host
Twitter: @StephenTremp

Horizon said...

awwww, my 5 year old tells the same thing, we can go to the bank and get money amma....:)

Arun said...

She got it almost right. You have to buy the bank first :)

Reflections said...

haha.. i love the way children's minds work.. oh by the way, did she manage to sleep by herself ??


Keirthana said...

Xena's innocence is blowing me away with each of your posts. Adorable she is!

Sayesha said...


Hahaha I like the consequences part! :D

Little minds think alike!

LOL! With what?

Yes, she did sleep by herself. And continues to do so! *fingers crossed*

Thank you. :D