Sunday, 15 April 2012


It was stormy here last night.

I wrote about my daughter’s ‘waves’ previously. They’re when tears come flooding out in a sudden rush, as if she’s suddenly been caught by onrushing water at high tide.

She’d not had one for while. Last night, the dam burst and she had seven. Nothing could console her. It was the middle of the night before she finally fell asleep. All this woke her brother - who’d taken some serious coralling to get to bed - and who seemed to think it was morning already.

I don’t always find out what causes a wave. But at 1.45am, when the tears finally dried up and the tide went out, my girl whispered something to me.

“I don’t know what plate to have at Nanny’s tomorrow.”

So it seems that the emotional meltdown may have been caused by this: My daughter has a treasured Tracy Beaker plate, which she eats all her meals off. For Easter I bought her a Hello Kitty plate, which is now her new favourite. Or so I thought. It looks like she’s torn between which she likes best. And last night, that was enough. Her sleepy little brain got stuck on a choice, and it caused a crisis.

“Is that what the matter is?” I asked her, sitting on the edge of her bed, our conversation lit by the flickering light from her fish tank.

She nodded.

“Shall we take both plates with us, and then you can choose when you’re there?”

She nodded again. And rolled over and went to sleep.

Video is Lee Dorsey - Tears, Tears And More Tears (thanks to @twrafferty for introducing me to this track)

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