Charlotte Philby's parental leave: 'Did you like Bambi,' I ask my daughter. 'I liked the fighting...'

A mother's weekly dispatch from the pre-school frontline

"And that is an assassin," I hear my husband say as I enter the living room, where he and the four-year-old are curled in front of the computer staring at a page of different Ninjas, while the toddler repeatedly slams a broken buggy into the wall.

"What are we doing today?" our daughter asks, trailing after me as I slam the laptop and retreat to the kitchen. "Today," I say, "we are going to watch Bambi. No more Spider-Man, no more Thundercats. You and I are going to sit down and watch a proper film, OK?"

It's not that I don't appreciate having a daughter who is more taken by Ninja Turtles than Frozen. But I do worry about the mental impact of constant superhero warfare.

Ten minutes into Bambi, all is going well. So well that when my phone rings, I press 'Answer' and slip quietly into the next room. Twenty minutes later, I remember with horror the notorious Bambi's-mummy-dying scene and run back into the living room where my daughter is flicking casually through a comic.

"What happened?" I ask, looking for signs of trauma. "I turned it off because it was too long." Oh, I say. "Well, did you like it?" It was fine, she nods. "Any bit in particular?" She thinks for a minute: "I liked the fighting." I frown: "Fighting?" She laughs. "You know, there was a good reindeer and a naughty reindeer and they were fighting but I couldn't see their faces so I don't know who won. But I think it's the naughty reindeer, isn't it? 'Cause he's really cool."

motherland.net

Comments