Oh God. I am mortified.
Seriously, I really should come with a disclaimer. Perhaps I could hand one out to people upon first meeting them. Just a little note to explain that despite initial impressions and potentially odd behaviours, I really am an interesting, intelligent and - dare I say it - amusing human being.
For the record, this is not the way that this blog was supposed to start.
Ever since receiving the initial call from Irish Mammy and then the follow up from the Sunday Times, I had planned a snazzy little intro on how myself and the family Von Snot were about to become celebrities.
How we were about to be launched into the social strata of Irish high society where we would be wined and dined and recognized everywhere we go (or at least by those who memorize the faces of anyone who appears in the parenting pages of the Times.)
No, it wasn't about "The Book" and no, the powers that be in the world of Irish Publishing did not happen across my blog and demand an interview with the grand dame herself (that would be me) and her inspiration (the family Von Snot.)
Instead, it was to be a piece about how the upcoming budget and how the potential cuts to Child Benefit would affect Irish families. We would be one of the sample families. Today was the photo shoot.
My original plan to be the hostess with the mostest - cleanest house and cutest children - was foiled when at 4:00pm I realized I'd forgotten to buy biscuits to offer the photograher along with his hot beverage of choice.
So off I schlepped to the shops with a friend of mine to purchase Fox's finest and a few chocolates to boot (or to eat on the walk home, whatever...) The plan was to be in, out and home in plenty of time to give the house a quick makeover and spackle a few layers of glam onto my weary, pallid features.
Oh, and also to remove the dirty nappy from the kitchen floor where I'd accidentally left it after the girls' nap.
However, my lovely friend, sneaky wench that she is, had the gall to invite me to hers for coffee after which she'd drive me home, thus helping me to avoid having to push 100lbs of baby, biscuits and buggy up the mountain atop which I live (for the second time today I might add.)
The decision was easy and off we went, my filthy abode (and even filthier nappy) pushed to the back of my mind.
I arrived home in time to bin the nappy and wipe down the counters. The doorbell rang as I was reaching for the mascara.
The photographer was lovely - think Jack Nicholson - with an easy nature and a dry sense of humour who wasn't phased at all (that he showed anyway) by the two children who insisted on hanging from my chest for the first ten minutes of his visit (yeah, I forgot to do that as well before he got there.)
I, on the other hand, have not had to talk to anyone of the non-mommy variety in almost two years and am lost in any conversation that does not involve poo, puke or any other such scintillating baby related topics.
I was seriously out of my depth. I wittered on about anything and everything, god forbid there be even a HINT of silence. No sirrreeeee! I blathered on and on and on... All the while, the socially conscious part of my brain was screaming, "SHUT UP YOU MORON! SHUT UP!!!!" Did I listen?
Instead, I smiled and laughed and made the kind of small talk that even my North American roots were ashamed by.
Afterwards, in the vague hope that my social awkwardness was all in my head, I asked himself if I had been over the top at all, expecting of course him to say something along the lines of, " Of course not darling! You were lovely! The perfect hostess!"
Unfortunately, not having read the script, he improvised with something that went a bit along the lines of, "Well, you did go on a bit towards the end..."
In other words, Yes darling, you have the social graces of a nimrod and should really just stick to smiling and nodding unless otherwise directed.
Oh well! At least I remembered to bin the nappy.