The little girl who’s just turned three is bossy no more. She’s ditched her bossy ways and turned all nurturing and gentle. She’s now “Mummy” of the house. Earlier on, she adopted me as her kid and fussed a fair bit over me. But she soon realized that there’s absolutely no adorable-ness in me and has turned to Little Nat as her new target to mother.
Every day, she addresses herself in third person as “Mama” and talks to Nat as that. Sometimes Ben joins in and becomes “Dada”; but for a boy who’s already four-half turning five, pretend play as mum and dad is as fun as only five minutes. His world is one filled with monsters to catch, dinosaurs to hide from, dragons to slay and knighthood to be perfected. So that pretty much leaves the “Mummy” on her own to fuss over the baby and take care of him.
So the Mummy goes:
“Come, Nat, Mama will read you a book”
“Alright Nat, please don’t cry, Mama is here”
“Mama will feed you / bathe you / make you something to eat / tuck you in bed / hold your hand” every day.
This Mama throws very few tantrums nowadays (hurray and goodbye Terrible Twos!), manages her emotions pretty well with each passing day, and has gone all tender and loving, especially towards her little brother.
I am so not complaining, by the way; I love it whenever she goes on Mama-mode.
Just tonight, she made Nat lie down on the bed for a good fifteen minutes, pretending to apply ru yi oil on him. Nat very sportingly lifted his shirt for a rub on his tummy, played along with her by pretending to cry and needing comfort and it was all but terrific entertainment for us to watch.
Before Becks went to sleep, I just had to sit her down to have a good talk with her.
Me: Becks, so you’re Mama now huh…
Becks: Ya… I am!
Me: Means you can take care of everyone in this house?
Becks: Yes, I can!
Me: So you think I can take a holiday soon?
Me: I mean, you can take care of everyone right? Ok, let me ask you, can you change and bathe Di Di?
Becks: Ya. Bathing time I just put soap on him and wash with water.
Me: Can you feed him milk?
Becks: (pauses for a while – she knows I am still breastfeeding) Ummm, I will give him the bottle?
Me: Can you tuck him in bed?
Becks: I just ask him to lie down and sleep lor…
Me: Can you cook for him?
Becks: Err…no! I can only cook fake food! But Aunty can cook what!
Me: Ok, great, you can be the Mama. Take care of all the children in this room now, Mama. I will now return to sleep on my bed in the master bedroom.
For the record, I will still be co-sleeping with the kids in their room because when I declared that the new Mama would now take my place in my absence (I was going to apply for leave from motherhood in a bit, hurhurhur), Ben was pleading with me not to and Nat started to cry a bit.
Of course, “Mama” rose to the occasion and told the two boys it was going to be ok with her as their mum. “Don’t worry, Mama is here,” she said.
Gotta love this mum for her TLC. So glad I’ve found a suitable relief!