I’ve worked in marketing and communications for the last 12 years, and in that time my brain seems to have re-wired itself solely to facilitate the skills I need for my job. That and the ability to regail unsavoury anecdotes from Vice magazine for titillation at parties. It’s chucked everything else out that it once knew – or a least relegated it to my mind’s equivalent of the ‘cupboard full of crap’ that everyone has in their house (you know, the one with the dirt devil, bin liner full of coats and game of ‘Guess Who’ somewhere at the bottom of it?)
Once the baby is born I’m going to have dust off some of the things in this cupboard so I can exist alongside the baby, in her world. All the things that little girls are interested in have been deemed surplus to requirements and banished to a land far away in my memory. I’ve forgotten how fairytales and nursery rhymes go – mixing up Rapunzel and Rumplestiltskin story lines. I can only recall one verse of ‘Oranges and lemons’, which I realise is quite an obscure children’s song but I’m struggling to think of any others.
I remember when I was a little girl I used to ask my parents to tell me a story and they would make one up on the spot. Panic! I don’t possess those kind of improv skills. And I’ve forgotten how to play. Little girls create complex imaginary worlds where their dolls have different personalities and interact with eachother in a micro-society of Sylvanian creatures and Bratz dolls. Will I be expected to join in with this? At least if she was a boy I could build something out of LEGO and then smash it up with him. How does one regress after being hardened by the sarcasm and cynicism of adult life?
I am excited to discover it all again – The Hungry Catapillar, Spot the Dog, The Mr Men. No doubt it has all changed now and there are new characters – Square Bob Spongey Pants et al. And I’m excited to hopefully coax my childlike-self back to the present – so she can play with my daughter.