There comes a time in every Dad’s life when he has to become acquainted with the age-old practice of putting on tights.
No, not on himself, but on his baby daughter! And believe me, when you’ve not spent a lifetime familiarising yourself with it, it proves to be incredibly difficult.
What is it with girls’ clothes anyway? They look very cute and Sophie is always extremely well-coordinated. Mainly because of the amount of amazing clothes she has been given by very generous people but also because her mum has an insane knack of knowing what goes with what and how to make her daughter look good.
Not so with me. Sophie’s lucky if she has clothes on which are the right way round, let alone matching with another object in her wardrobe!
I will always remember the first painful time I tried dressing her. Jess was having a well-deserved break and I was left in charge.
I laid everything out neatly – Sophie watched me with a look bordering on scorn that simply said, You don’t know what you’re doing. I felt like Graham Poll at a World Cup finals match.
Anyways, in I dived. Vest over the head. Only a slight whimper although trying to squeeze her arms upwards into the little arm holes brought an angry cry of indignation. But first item down.
I’d chosen her a pretty red dress which I initially put on inside out but realised my mistake and sorted it. Dodged one. However, I didn’t enjoy discovering the tiny buttons on her back which required me to hold her with one hand and use my chunky, hamfisted fingers to deftly attach them.
And then there were the tights. Honestly, it would have been easier to dress an octopus!
Nobody tells you that you have to roll the legs on the tights up first. I was trying to simply pull them up in one swift movement. But Sophie was having none of it.
So I tried a tactic of pulling one on as far up the leg I could go and scrambling back to put the other on. Only to find that Sophie had kicked the first leg off and was grinning back at me as if to say Come and have a go, Daddy.
Grr. Eventually, after much blood, sweat and tears I managed to pull them on. It was only 8am in the morning and I was exhausted!
I brought Sophie down to proudly show her off. Breathlessly, I collapsed on the sofa to reflect on my achievement.
Then, with no trace of irony, Sophie was ill all down her front. You can handle this one Jess!