No, not my figure. Well, my figure too, but mostly the way today developed.
Lovely morning. M was preaching at a little country church with no organist, so I volunteered to accompany her to.. well, to accompany her. A good way to get a sneak preview of a church where I may well be called upon to preach in the coming months. The hymns were playable, and it was a delight to hear both my sons sitting alongside me and singing their hearts out. Until today Smudgelet had never been willing to partipate in the singing at church, despite being able to read and enjoying singing.
After the service, I was given the chance to play the ancient organ which now stands unused in a corner of the little chapel. It’s a beauty, with painted pipes and the tiniest ivory keys, and wooden stops that made a sound like a swanee whistle when you pulled them out! And as I was delighting in the experience of that and asked how old it was, the steward admitted that they didn’t know how old it was but they had one older… and unveiled a tiny harmonium about the size of a sewing machine. Talk about a workout for the mind AND the body – you had to pump madly with alternate feet, control the volume with a lever operated by your knee, and then use both hands to play on its tiny keyboard. It had a lovely tone, though, and was such fun to play.
We conned M into buying us lunch out. Well, I invited her to the local cafe for coffee, as it was such a beautiful day.. and then discovered I’d no money. She offered to stump up the cost of the coffee, but once we got inside the cafe we just couldn’t resist getting lunch. A real treat, and chance for us all to chatter and relax together.
Then this afternoon the heavens opened and so did Tiddles’ temper. Once again unwilling to do the homework he repeatedly puts off until he gets detention, this time he responded to it with violence… until I ended up having to restrain him. A phone call brought our wonderful M to the rescue, but he wouldn’t respond to her either, so I ended up calling a friend who’s an emergency foster carer and arranging for her to take him overnight so as to stop myself calling social services. She’s a wonder too – dropped everything and took him in as he stood, in his torn pyjamas and dressing gown. I’m now waiting for her to call and let me know how he is. Distressing for poor Smudgelet, though – terrified to see his brother attack me and desolate to see him go. And as for me……. I just want him home, but I’m also relieved not to have to deal with it any more tonight… and I’m still all of a shake. I’m glad M was here to reassure me that I did, actually, do everything right and that there was nothing I could have done to prevent it developing the way it did.
The other night Smudgelet, talking about his sister, said “It would be so much easier if I didn’t love her so much”. Thinking of Dad and thinking of Tiddles… boy, do I know what he means!