‘I know I should go home, but just one more email…’ sighed Rebecca.
At home, her frustrated husband, Daniel waited impatiently as their twins Josh and Gemma ran around squealing.
‘There you are-finally!’ said Daniel, ‘That’s the fourth time this week. I’m getting a bit sick of it. You better be home on time tomorrow, because I won’t be here.’
‘Where are you going?’
‘I’m leaving Rebecca, I’ve had enough of your lies. Your commitment isn’t to me and the family. It’s to your work. Well, I’ve had enough.’
‘As far as I’m concerned it’s a closed subject.’
Sure enough, the following day, Daniel wasn’t home when she returned. She was only one hour late, the twins were at home – six years old and the next door neighbour was there.
‘I’m sorry said Gertrude,’ he was so adamant, he just left.
‘It’s not your fault,’ reassured Rebecca. She looked at the twins. What came first, food or bath? She couldn’t remember, Daniel always did that.
She decided on the food. Now what did Daniel cook? She always had take away on the way home. She decided to buy takeaway pizza.
‘What about our bath?’ moaned Josh. ‘I don’t like Mushrooms,’ moaned Jess. ‘I don’t like these salty things,’ moaned Josh,’ or the black round things.’
‘What about a bath?’ suggested Rebecca eager to have them in bed.
‘Yeah!’ chorused the kids.
After putting them in the bath, Rebecca quickly switched on her laptop. ‘I have to catch up on the emails I didn’t finish at work.’ she muttered.
Only this time the laptop didn’t light up as normal. She checked the power. That was ok. Then it must be the battery. No, that was fully charged. OK, it was, it was, it was…oh shit! the computer is faulty.’
She rang the twenty four hour help support line. ‘Sorry, we are fully booked out until Thursday.’
‘What! That’s three days away!’
‘Yes ma’am, we are very busy at present.’
She was stuck. Her work would not let her use another support agency.
‘Mum! The water’s cold,’ said the twins waddling towards her dripping wet.
‘Huh? Oh yeah. Just put clothes on,’ she muttered, more concerned with the computer.
‘Hey, can we play snakes and ladders Mum….pleeeeze?’ begged Jess as they took out the board.
Rebecca took a long hard look. These were her children. Look how big there were. How long was it since she had played with them? And they still wanted her to play. Such simple faith. ‘Yeah sure,’ she replied
‘Yey!’ they yelled, ‘Mum’s gonna play!’
Once they had finished, Rebecca put them to bed. She sat back with a hot cuppa and reflected on the demands of her work. Her family was growing up and she had nearly missed it. A faulty computer had caused her to see them…for the first time. At the end of the day, her boss paid her for her time, but her children loved her – unconditionally. She decided from now on, court reporter would change – Big time.