Plum…” Britta breathed under her breath, just barely audible to be heard, but not enough to let it fall on her daughters innocent ears in the other room. “Why can’t things just… work?!”
The last few weeks, months… years… have been a constant barrage of incidents in which it felt like life was out for her. Aside from the family drama, that was always stirring at a constant simmer, she found herself in a tight position of finishing the last of her schooling and internship while juggling the responsibility of being a full-time parent. On top of that, the appliances each took their turn to act up– this time it was the washer. The door was jammed, leaving the wet mess inside to fester.
Despite the overwhelming stench of wet, stagnant clothes, she turned away hoping that if she just ignored it long enough she would be able to find a solution for it… eventually.
Preparing for another night she scrubbed at the dishes, the scouring pad chipping her worn nails, her mind not ceasing to bring up every insecurity and doubt that has plagued her of the corner she backed herself into. Did she have any other options at this point?
With her back turned she could hear the ruffling of objects in the other room and the all-too-familiar silence that would hang in the air before disaster would strike. “Cleo!” Britta’s voice boomed with urgency. It was all that needed to be said before the shuffling ceased and little footsteps pattered down the hallway in her direction.
“What are you-” She turned around and her breath left her as soon as her eyes fell upon her little girl. Finally, all the festering frustrations began to boil just beneath the surface, a new rage overtaking her as her nostrils flared. Again?! Her inner dialogue seethed. She had just gotten Cleo ready for bed… and now she was to start the whole two hour routine all over again?! And the makeup… Oh, her favorite make up… destroyed, possibly colored on other surfaces of the house. Her imagination could only muster what the bathroom looked like. I don’t have time for this…!
Her heavy footsteps were brisk toward the little girl, each adding to the rush of getting this ‘chore’ complete so she could get back to her mountain of other ‘to-do’s’. There was cleaning up the toddlers mess from the day, fixing the washer, doing homework, laying the child down for bed… The list went on and on. There was no time for this kind of nonsense.
“What did you do?” Britta cried, an edge of agitation in her voice as she proceeded to the child, the sharpness in her voice causing the little one to cower in shame of her artistic masterpiece that was plastered across her face.
What had once been a beaming smile turned into a frown as Cleo stood there twiddling her fingers nervously.
Just before reaching the child she froze, her mind stalling as she gazed down upon the saddened girl whose chin began to quiver. Suddenly, the anger was gone as well as everything else that had caused her temper to short-circuit. All that was left was the empty feeling of guilt that overcame her with how she reacted.
“Oh, Cleo…” Britta said softly, leaning down towards her level. “You look just like Mommy.”
She perked up, her smile stretching across those chubby cheeks. “I’m pretty.”
“You sure are.” Through new eyes she could see her child differently, the make up no longer an issue. She was able to see clearly enough to acknowledge the moment. Where had the time gone? How was Cleo growing up so fast? She was maturing at a quick rate, her intelligence increasing by the day, and what had she done to be a part of it?
Britta thought through all the moments that had come and go, all the milestones she had missed because she had some place better to be. When would it all stop?
Maybe it wouldn’t stop… but she could make it go slower.
“How about we take another bath. Hmm?” Britta smiled in return, a hint of sadness in her eyes. “And some… bubbles?”
Those little eyes perked up nice and wide. “Yeah!”
“Come on.” Britta lifted the child in her arms, those little hands reaching around her and grabbing at the fabric of her shirt as she walked towards the bathroom slowly, savoring this moment. She tried to etch how she felt, the feel of those small hands, the weight of her head against her chest, her sparkling eyes when she got excited for the simple things.
She had to learn from this. Not only to remember the time Cleo was small, but to remind her of all the beautiful moments in-between.
7 pictures and 799 words
Honestly, I had a really fun time participating in the Monthly SimLit Challenge done by Lisabee that I just had to do it again. And it’s no surprise that I tried to incorporate it into my story again. (It’s my lazy way to not have to make any more additional characters to litter my game haha.)
This month is Mother… Mothering… Motherhood so I wanted to portrait a situation with Britta, a single mother, although this is a little bit into the future than my story, but not too much, but I just had to do it!
Another change that I made is I entered as a Veteran this time. I’ve only been blogging a little over two months now, but with all the work I’ve put into my blog I’ve gotten a lot more experience writing. Hope you like my entry! 🙂