| 6°C Dublin

Marisa Mackle: Keeping in touch is not child's play

Men always want what they can't have. They seem to learn it at a very young age too. My son, Gary, only wants to play with things that aren't his. I've spent a fortune on fancy toys for him but his three favourite objects in the whole world are my laptop, my glasses and my mobile phone.

Of course, they are strictly off limits. I have bought Gary three different kiddie mobile phones of his own so that he'll lose interest in mine. They are colourful and play funky tunes and, in my opinion, are far more interesting than my plain silver one. But nothing has worked.

I suppose he sees my phone in my hand all day long and thinks that if mummy loves this little object so much it must be amazing. So, when I'm finished with the phone at the end of the day, I make sure I switch it off and hand it to him. His little face lights up and he turns it over and over in his hands and it keeps him amused for ages.

Speaking of phones, mine is like an extension of my hand at the moment. I'm in Spain living in near isolation and refusing to talk to anybody in order to finish my book. It's grand during the day because I'm busy but then, at night, I get this uncontrollable urge to contact others.

It's easier to text people, because if you phone you catch them unawares. At least with texting they can get back to you in their own time.

I didn't text anybody when I was pregnant because I'd read an article about mobile phones being harmful to pregnant women and when the baby was little I didn't have time to be sending messages. So most people didn't hear from me for a good two years.

Therefore, you can imagine their surprise when they heard from my phone at around 4am on a Tuesday morning in January. I didn't mean to phone so many people. In fact, I didn't mean to phone anybody. I gave my mobile phone to the baby just before I went to bed and, for once in my life, I forgot to turn it off.

So you can imagine my horror when I discovered he had managed to contact so many people from my address book. One was an ex who was obviously not pleased about getting a call from my phone to hear 'Mary Had a Little Lamb' being played from baby Gary's other toy phone.

"You need to grow up now, Marisa," he sent in a rather irate text the following morning. Mortifying.


Privacy