Patrick watched, listened, he gurgled when his mum rushed to his side, she looked hassled, torn, wanting to nurse him, but needed too by her demanding daughter. Being a quiet baby, Emilie worried she was missing key caring and nurturing opportunities, that he would feel neglected if she spent her time with his sister. Parenting forums gave divided opinions, Emilie sifted through trying to figure how to juggle her two babies, to ensure they both got all the love and attention required for being future healthy adults. Every tip she attempted made her feel inadequate, that maybe one child had been enough, and Patrick or Eliza would suffer because of her inability to parent.
Ziva listened, concerned for her sister-in-law, Rylan was consumed by work, her whole life revolved around nappies, playtime and feeding three hungry mouths. She got the impression Emilie loved her family, but it would be nice to let loose. This gave Ziva an idea, eager for a night on the town herself, she arrived mid-afternoon to help get ready. Eliza loved the personal attention, and Ziva had been keen to get extra cuddles with her nephew, so it worked perfectly. Emilie, uncertain how Rylan would react, prepared dinner, pondering the possibility of dancing all night, she sang in the shower, the excitement building. Straining to hear voices, Emilie cringed, a heated discussion, twins, Rylan and Ziva were different, and she knew to dress quickly to avoid war. Rylan stood stunned, the transformation from a full-time parent, covered in sick, paint and flour to seriously yummy mummy, shoulder-length blonde hair straightened, and a fitted white playsuit emphasised the slender figure she reclaimed via swimming. Kissing his cheek, Emilie informed him it was ladies’ night, linking arms with Ziva, the pair skipped through the door.
Emilie looked anxious in the taxi, leaving Rylan in charge, knowing he made a mess the last time he changed Patrick’s nappy and Eliza had a habit of convincing Rylan to allow a biscuit with her warm milk. This plot meant she would wake in a mood, bad dreams from the late-night sugar, he might forget to tempt her back to bed with the unicorn teddy and book. How could she relax and enjoy the evening knowing Rylan needed her? That he spent hours on his streaming channel, uploading videos, driving his fame as a local internet celebrity rather than learning his children’s quirks.
Ziva lined shots up at the bar, Emilie needed to relax, Rylan had to learn the hard way that family comes first. The mix of loud music, alcohol and a vibrant party spirit seeped into Emilie’s mind, after Eliza was born, she got out, back to who she was; this time everything felt different. She missed being home, becoming a mum had changed her foundation, dancing, hanging with Ziva, Emilie enjoyed herself, but in her heart, she would rather be home dancing with Eliza or watching Patrick sleep.
That night did remind her that she needed time alone, Rylan worked full-time, but he was blind to the amount of effort she put into running their home. She asked him to do the laundry while she took the children to the park, an easy request, everything prepared, laundry sorted, detergent, settings, he had to press start, and hang out when done. Arriving home, Rylan sat editing another video, his third that day, the sink full of breakfast plates, the additional mess from the half-eaten sandwich and the laundry sat unwashed. Emilie kept her cool, putting Patrick in his crib, distracting Eliza with a cookie and her tablet. Slamming shut Rylan’s laptop, Emilie fumed, how could be selfish, she hoped for a reprieve from all the housework, an afternoon to spend as a family. An argument ensued, Rylan snapped, his work lost when his laptop shut, the laundry posed the biggest issue, he complained it would be noisy, interfering with his recording. No clean clothes gave Emilie an idea, she needed to save the afternoon and remind her husband having children had changed nothing, she was at her core a mischievous woman. Rylan laughed at her threat to run naked down the street if he kept declining to help. Letting the dress fall, her bra and knickers removed at the door, Rylan raised an eyebrow, disbelief and arms folded. The door swung open, Emilie set off down the street, her gorgeous naked body tingled, she felt the warm breeze and felt free as she ran. His jaw dropped, he grabbed a jacket hoping to catch her, praying she was unseen by the neighbours.