Little Tales: The Close Shave

by | Nov 27, 2013 | Little Boy, Little Brothers, Little Tales | 8 comments

The Close Shave


 If you must know, I was tooling around on my phone when I should have been watching them. So from that perspective, it is probably my fault.

I’m the mother. No doubt future therapy will reveal it was all my fault.

But in my defence, I never could have predicted my children would almost shave their faces off in the bath.

Let’s go back.

We’ve established that I was tooling around on my phone. And the boys were in the bath. Bren was reading bedtime stories to Harlow.

I could hear the boys giggling. In hindsight, I guess you could describe the laughter as conspiratorial. The level of their mirth should have pricked up my ears. But Instagram.

So they’re laughing and giggling and splashing until the crying begins. There was no preceding crash or bump to indicate that something had gone awry. Except the crying. Zig’s crying is epic at the best of times, and as I approached the bathroom, I could tell he was hurt. I could tell that he was on the brink of a complete breakdown. And I knew that my reaction to whatever I was about to see was going to be the tipping point.

Lesson; my poker face SUCKS. I may have also uttered, “Oh, God!” but to be fair, my child was sitting in the bath with a mouth full of blood where you’d expect teeth to be. Zig seeing me seeing him was all it took to unleash full hysterics.

Urrrghhhhh, urrrrghhhhh! I. Don’t. Like. Blood! I. Don’t. Like. It!

Turns out Zig doesn’t like blood.

“What happened?” I asked but he was in no position to answer.

“Luca, what happened?”

“I don’t know!” he said.

“What do you mean you don’t know? Did you bump into each other?”

“I don’t…yes, yes, I think we did,” was the reply and if the scene had been a couple of notches below utter chaos, I might have considered this response dubious. But there was no time for lie detecting because Ziggy was a couple of notches above utter hysteria.

In that tiny bathroom, bedlam. I was so confused I didn’t know where to begin. Bren arrived for back-up.

“Do you want to brush your teeth?” I asked helplessly but Ziggy recoiled in horror, a fresh round of wails echoing off the walls.  

“Am I bleeding, too?” asked Luca, touching his lip worriedly.

“No, Luca, you’re fine. You’re not bl… Hang on, yes, you are!” I stared with disbelief at the tiny circle of blood forming on his top lip.

“Oh, no! Oh, nooooooooo!” Luca fretted.

Urrrggghhhhh, urrrgggghhhh. I. Don’t. Like. It!” Ziggy continued as Bren hauled his soaking body from the bath.

“Calm down, Luca!” I instructed. “Yours isn’t that bad. It’s just a tiny bit of blood. Now why don’t you brush your teeth?”

“Noooooo! Noooooo!” he cried and I fished him out and wrapped a towel around him.

Eventually, we managed to get them both into their pyjamas and after much reassurance that I would be gentle, I wiped away most of the blood from around Zig’s mouth but it was still impossible to tell where the bleeding was coming from. His teeth were streaked red but it was a relief to know they were still there.

Calm was mostly restored, Bren went back to putting Harlow down and we read our stories.

When it was time for lights out, I lay next to Zig. It was quiet. Just the sound of breathing.

And then a little voice came tentatively from the darkness,

“Mum?” It was Luca.

“Yes, honey?”

“Well….ohhh….I think I have to tell you something.”

I waited.

“I think I have to tell you the truth about what happened.”

“Okay,” I said.

“Well, actually, we didn’t bump into each other. You know that white thing in the shower? We were playing with that white thing and I think that’s what made Ziggy bleed.”

I wracked my brain. “What white thing?”

“You know that white thing? I don’t know how to describe it but it came down into the bath and we were playing with it and I think that’s how we got hurt.”

“Oh, hang on. I know the white thing you’re thinking of. That’s a thing I use to get rough skin off your feet. Did you rub that on your lip?”

“Yes….,” Luca began nervously.

“That thing is sharp, guys! It’s like using a grater on your skin!”

“But we didn’t know!” Ziggy interjected.

“I know. You’re not in trouble, honey. I just can’t believe it – that must have really hurt!”

“Yeah, well, at first I didn’t think it hurt but then after it did, “Luca said.

“Okay, well, this is why I ask you not to play with things that don’t belong to you, okay?”

“Okay,” they chorused.

“But what is that thing called,” Luca asked.

“It’s a…,” I thought hard, “…a pedi….file.”

“Oh, yeah, a pedifile. That’s right.” Said Luca.

We lay there in silence for a while.

And then I began to laugh hysterically.

“Hang on, no! It’s not called that. I don’t know what it is but it’s not a pedifile.”

Luca and I laughed hysterically for a while but only one of us understood why what I had said was funny.

And then I stopped laughing abruptly and gave the boys a stranger danger chat.


“Now if someone asks you to take your pants off, what would you say?” I began.

Clearly, I was traumatised and over-tired. But clearly, it was a conversation we needed to have because Ziggy confidently replied, “Yes!”

When they were finally asleep, I went into the bathroom to find the offending foot file but it was nowhere to be found. Then I spied my razor that was sort of white but mostly green and I wondered. Could they have been playing with my razor?

In the morning, I showed Luca the razor.

“Was this the thing you played with last night?”

“Yes,” he replied.

And I prepared breakfast for two boys with very premature shaving nicks on their top lips and gave thanks they hadn’t performed an accidental self-circumcision.



And thank you to everyone who entered the Glasshouse Pamper Pack giveaway. The lucky random winner is

bubble936 said…
Because it relieves my kids from pain and discomfort & gives me mental peace that i am doing the right thing.

Please email me thelittlemumma[at]gmail[dot]com with your postal details. Thank you!



Hello friends


I’m Angie!  I mum. I write. I wife. My husband would say this is the correct order.  He’s so neeeedy. I live with my family in Melbourne, Australia, where I complain about the weather for 90% of the year – but I can’t imagine living anywhere else. Except maybe in Lake Como, waving to my neighbours George and Amal each morning.

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  1. Karen T

    Is it wrong that this post just made me laugh hysterically?! All so close to home! I also have been know to call it a pedifile… Sounds quite wrong though!! I remember taking skin off my shin as a kid with dad’s razor. I’m glad the boys are ok!! Mwah xx

  2. Angie @ The Little Mumma

    If you had not laughed hysterically then I would have had to hang up my boots as a writer!

    Boys are fine. Crazy little buggers.


  3. Amethyst

    I’m crying and laughing.
    And I don’t mean ‘laughing so hard that I’m crying’.
    I am both crying in distress and laughing hysterically because it’s so gosh darn funny.
    My husband thinks I’m crazy.

    Thank you.

  4. Louisa

    I’m with Amethyst! Best thing I’ve read all day. SO glad they didn’t hurt themselves more seriously though!

    The first time I asked Bliss what she would do if someone came and told her to go with them she also replied confidently “Yes, you go with them”.

    The innocence is both beautiful and terrifying at the same time.

  5. Trish

    My boys gave done this too. Tough lesson for mums to learn.

  6. Acie D

    Ohhh I remember when I had a party at mine and a friend of a friends child had decided to raid my bathroom… I came up the hall, seeing this kid I didnt even know, in my hallway silently crying with blood dripping from his top lip, all I could do was hug him! when i asked him what happened he showed me the shaver and said “I just wanted to do it like dad does” I tended his wounds and i’m sure he is not too tramatised by the event! poor little dudes!
    but hey pedifile was pretty funny!

  7. Vicki @ Knocked Up & Abroad

    oh gawd I laught at the pedifile moment….until the word razor was mentioned as the culprit. Yikes. Scary stuff.

  8. Madeleine

    Oh god, that sibling silence conspiracy is a killer, isn’t it? Same deal here when P recently burned her tummy on the gas fireplace – we had no idea what had even happened for the first few minutes. Lots of ‘looks’ exchanged between the two girls, and it took a day for the full story to come out. We were lucky that the burn could’ve been much more serious, and has just about healed completely. So glad Luca and Zig didn’t slice anything off! x


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