The joys of motherhood

April 03, 2012

Things rarely go as planned. At least not when you have kids. Take last week for example. I dropped my kids at the hotel pool and drove off for a quick appointment at the parlour to have my eyebrows done.

I was halfway through my first eye brow when a lady came in and as she was having her nails done, she started recounting a rather horrifying accident with kids at the beach. That was about all my mind needed to get its own creative juices flowing.

It did not take me long to convince myself of a nightmare at the pool. My heart raced wildly, my limbs trembled uncontrollably. I couldn’t take it anymore, and throwing the assistant’s hand off my face, I leapt off my chair, mumbled some inaudible excuse that I no longer recall, and darted to the door. “But other one eyebrow fulluff hair no” cried the poor woman with a piece of thread dangling through her teeth. I had no time to explain!

Outside, I realised I had left my phone on the table and rushed right back, horrified to find the assistants having a good laugh at my expense. I smiled lamely as I rushed out again, not a word exchanged, except a few sheepish glances.

At the hotel, I ran like a maniac, through doors, down staircases and into the gardens. The guard asked for my card but I had not a moment to lose! The rest of the journey was covered with me at breakneck speed and a guard at my heels, trying breathlessly to keep up!

And then I saw them playing happily in the pool together! With a deep sigh of relief, I walked over to a lounger as gracefully as I could, past all those who had just witnessed my Olympic mad dash to the finish line, and lay down as casually as I could pretend, my hand placed strategically over the unattended eyebrow.

And then something happened. I think I fell into a little reverie and was shaken awake by a knock on my lounger. Or was it a divine nudge to wake me up and check on my kids? I sprung off my seat and looked around madly to count. One, two, three. Where was the fourth? My youngest was missing and my heart skipped a beat.

Not waiting to look or think, I sprinted from my seat and taking one deep breath that I saved in two ballooned cheeks, I held my nose with my thumb and index finger and did a massive leapfrog right into the centre of the pool. A huge thud, a splashing all around and from the midst of it all, a spluttering and splashing before a horrified me came up gasping for breath.

Now I’m a pretty good swimmer, but don’t ask why I was spluttering around like a maniac. I realised that my being in the middle of the pool was hardly helping since I didn’t even have a clue where my little one was and started waving madly to the lifeguard for help in the rescue mission. Perhaps he failed to understand, or perhaps it was me who looked the most in need of help, for he dived right in and up to me and throwing me onto his back before I could rebel, swam up to the side of the pool and hauled me onto the tiled area.

“My daughter!!” I cried as I sprawled to my feet and prepared my second massive leap into the pool. And just then, a happy little squeak from somewhere behind:

“Mommy, can you find me?” I turned around slowly, cautiously, hopefully. From behind my lounger, I spotted the familiar fuchsia swimsuit.

Tears of relief welled up and moments later I was weeping miserably, happily, so relieved, so elated! I clung onto my daughter as though I hadn’t seen her for years, and hugged her over and over until I could feel her trying to wiggle out. When I finally detached my face off her shoulder for all to see, my oldest took one brief look, rolled her eyes and shook her head in disbelief.

The twins gasped “Mo-om, gosh!!” and the one who I had just poured all my heart into, burst out laughing from the pits of her little tummy. Their reaction rocked my fragile emotional state and I burst out yelling for all to hear:

“If you guys were any more responsible, I could’ve been sitting here dry and comfortable, like everyone else with two matching eye-brows”!

And with that, I made my furious exit, with four startled souls following at a short distance. Thus my one-browed one-woman show was complete, from breath-taking entry, a grasping solo act, to a powerful finish. There was not a single soul in the entire pool area who had not been mesmerised throughout!

Outside, I realised I had left my phone behind once again. This time I was not going back!

Muscat resident Homaira Kabir writes about her thoughts and everyday experiences