As I sat hunched in the dark yesterday evening, listening to my daughter’s warthog snort become slower and slower as she drifted off to the land of nod, I found myself, for the first time since childhood, truly wishing I had magical powers.
In that moment I longed to teleport out of that room without disturbing her, and find myself enthroned on the sofa in comfort.
And then I realised there are a range of spells that might benefit me when it comes to making parenting a little more enchanting.
So if I could wiggle my nose or click my fingers – here are the tricks I’d choose to pull out of my hat.
The ultimate way to leave the nursery once your little one is settled in for the night. It eliminates the problems of the creaking chair, the squeaky floorboard, the soft pad of your socked-feet as you tiptoe towards the door or any other possible disturbance as you bid your hasty retreat.
It is surely the only way to combat children’s own magical sensory powers that have them sitting bolt upright and wide awake the second you dare to draw breath.
If you can’t teleport away from the bedside to freedom, then mindreading would be a pretty handy alternative.
“Put the water on for the pasta, I think I should be able to escape in a few minutes and I’m starving,” I would transmit silently to my Significant Other downstairs.
Or, “Bring me a cup of tea up here now – we’re in for a night of it.”
Of course, if I could just bewitch my child to sleep in the blink of an eye with a few magic words, what other spell could I possibly need? But I believe they have to be open to the power of suggestion…
Oh, the long and tortured nights I have spent practising the art of contortion in my own bed, as I try to find a way to lie around the snoring little body splayed diagonally across my side of the bed, arms stretched over my pillow.
All I need is the ability to hover above her, but beneath the duvet and enjoy my own deep slumber.
At the age of 35 I still can’t click my fingers. Not in a way that creates any sort of satisfying snap, anyway.
This must be the reason that I am not able to find that element of fun in tidying up toys scattered across every inch of floor and furniture that Mary Poppins sang about.
I’m not asking to be able to turn water into wine or spin gold here.
Just to be able to turn the items in my fridge into a delicious, nutritious meal for my child with no effort whatsoever.
I can’t help feeling my daughter would love and respect me more if I were a cat.