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A "Shocking" Babysitter

You know, you accidentally electrocute a friend's child ONCE and they are suddenly all reluctant to let their child come and play ever again.

I mean, REALLY!

It all started rather innocently enough. One of my dearest friends - let's call her Kate (mostly because that's her real name) phoned one morning and asked if her daughter Bethany could come and play with Kayla for a few hours later that afternoon.

I was thrilled. Kayla had been mooching around all morning muttering "I have nothing to DO!" while looking in her enormous cupboard filled with every kind of toy and craft item known to man. So Bethany's visit would save me the hassle of killing my child and going to jail for 20 years. And let's face it, prison orange is just not my colour.

True to form, Bethany was an absolute delight. Her and Kayla played just beautifully and I really didn't hear a single peep out of them, other than a rather disturbingly high-pitched scream from Bethany that sounded like she was in pain. Or on fire.

 In fact, it was so unusual that I almost went to go and check on them.

Two minutes later, when Kayla rushed in looking a little pale, I actually began to suspect that something might actually be wrong. Especially when Bethany followed quickly behind her with tears streaming down her sweet little face!

Turns out that Kayla and Bethany had been jumping on the trampoline and that Bethany had accidentally touched the electric fence while waiting for her turn. And that SOMEBODY (quite obviously Stephen) had forgotten to turn it off before the girls went to go and play outside.

I felt sick. What if Bethany would never again be able to walk without her little knees wobbling? And what if her hair would never again be beautifully straight and would always stand up on end like that. And most of all, what if her mother killed me before I had a chance to reach my goal weight and know for SURE if nothing really tastes as good as thin feels?

It was all too horrible for words.

Now I would like to say that I acted in a VERY mature fashion and immediately phoned Kate. But I can't. Because the truth is that my first thought (other than the wobbly knees and frizzy hair) was whether there was any possible way I could get away with it without Kate ever having to find out. But sadly, 7 year old children are not very good at keeping secrets, unless you bribe them with chocolate. And I was fresh out. (What do you think I was doing while the children were busy electrocuting themselves?)

Which is why, when Kate arrived a few minutes later, we greeted her with very shaky knees - Bethany (who still hadn't blinked for the last ten minutes) and me (weak with fear).

True to form, Kate treated the news with supreme grace. She hugged Bethany and made sure she was fine, before hugging me and saying that I must have gotten "such a fright" and was I okay? Which made me feel SO much better. And just so so much worse!

The good news is that Bethany appears to have made a full recovery. Kate still attended my baby shower and seems to love me just as much as before. And her husband (despite sending me a rude text message later that evening calling me a SHOCKING babysitter, if you'll pardon the pun) actually brought both their children to Kayla's birthday party a few weeks back.

Now if only they will let me babysit again! I really WILL try not to break them this time!


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