Monday, 23 December 2013

Week 119- aprons, buggies and buying gender neutral...

What with Marks and Sparks pledging to make all the packaging for their toys gender neutral by Spring 2014, I thought I should at least do my bit.

I wanted to start as I mean to go on with present buying for Nancy, and get her something non-girly that she could play with.
This has absolutely nothing to do with the fact that we’ve found out we’re having a boy and so he could have all the toys when he’s old enough.

Absolutely nothing to do with that at all.
Thing is, whenever I pick Nancy up from the childminder, she’s more often than not whizzing around with a toy pram, looking like she’s having the time of her life.

In fact, Ulrika and I were at a playgroup the other day with the girls, and Nancy and her bestie Ebba were screaming themselves purple, both gripping a handle of a broken push chair, desperately trying to be the lead driver.
So I thought that would be a good start.

A blue toy buggy.
Done.

Ben suggested that we get a baby to put in it. An introduction for Nancy to her having a baby brother next year.
This sounded like a good idea.

Thing is, unless you want to pay the best part of forty quid, and buy from a specialised retailer online, it’s virtually impossible to buy a gender neutral doll.
And the ones that are advertised are quite realistic looking. But not in a good way. More creepy in a Stephen King way.


So Ben came back from Argos with a plastic, pink wearing, girl baby doll. And the next day we went back to the shop to exchange it.
I flicked through the pages of the catalogue like a woman possessed thinking, this can’t be it, can it? Four pages full of bright pink baby dolls donned with additional hair accessories, hand mirrors and the occasional make up set.

A lot of these dolls wee themselves.
Fair dos.

I can see how that works if you give them a bottle of water.
But a weeing, pooing doll?

WTF?
It’s job enough changing one person’s nappy. I’m not intending on cleaning up Baby Annabell’s shit as well. And where does it come from? What are you meant to feed a plastic doll to make it produce a life-like turd?

At the point of despair, we swapped the doll with sewn on pink clothes for one with removable pink clothes and I thought I could buy her a yellow baby gro instead.
I realised that Nancy didn’t really have very much in her stocking.

By not much, I mean so far she has an apple and orange, and I’m not too sure how long ago I bought the orange.

So I went into town on a mercy dash to get some small stuff for her.

And as I was buying something for another friend in a homeware shop, saw an apron with the Hungry Caterpillar on the front of it.

Nancy ‘helps’ me cook by eating 90% of a bowl of grated cheese and sprinkling the rest on whatever it is I’m attempting to make, so I thought that would be a nice thing for her to wear.

So, there you have it.
The gender neutral buying for Nancy has most definitely been an out and out success.
She is getting a pram, a baby doll and an apron.

Just need to get her the chain and the kitchen sink, and I think that’s shopping for this year.

Done.

Monday, 16 December 2013

Week 118- double Corrie, Ouija boards and River Dance style tantrums...

I feel like we've got two daughters at the moment.

The one who's a happy, chatty, Peppa Pig loving, cuddling little girl.

And the one who we attempt to put to bed.

Who's a tad like Regan from The Exorcist, post Ouija board.




I never learn.

I'd been showing off.

Banging on to my mum about how brilliant it was when they grown out of the restless sleeping.

This is the absolute antithesis of what I should have been doing. Which is keeping totally bloody schtum and accepting that Nancy had turned a corner. She was sleeping properly.

We'd even had a friend over to babysit who willing offered to do it AGAIN.

NOT. ANY. MORE.

Nancy is now on an international-scale sleep strike.

Thing is, this only seems to be the case when we're at home.

We took her to a restaurant for a family meal.

The place was packed with people out for their Christmas dos. Really loud women pulling crackers and yelling their jokes.

And Nancy slept through the whole thing in her buggy. She'd even said to Ben about 7.30 that she'd 'like a little rest.'

Yet we can softly read her a bedtime story, carry her into bed, stroke her hair and tell her we'll see her in the morning.

She'll snuggle down. Close her eyes. 

And about a milli-second later, they'll ping wide open and she's slide out of bed, having instantly burst into tears.

What are you meant to do about that?

I mean, genuinely how are you meant to negotiate with someone who, one minute is telling you they love you and they'll see you at wakey time.

And the next they're screaming themselves maroon whilst stamping their feet, River Dance style?


I stupidly assumed we'd got our evenings back.

That watching a double Corrie on a Monday was more than just a pipe dream.


But no.

The 'being put to bed, feigning sleep, running out of bed screaming, being put to bed' cycle can go on for anything up to two hours.

But the real punch in the tits was when we had a friend round for dinner the other night, and Nancy confided in him that she, 'wakes up and cries and makes mummy and daddy sad and cross. Then I wake up again and sleep in their big bed.'

Fantastic.
 
We have been stitched up good and proper, the pair of us.

And no matter how many times she promises pre-bath that she'll be a good girl at bedtime, the moment those pyjamas come on, Regan creeps out too.

So I'm hanging out for her to start believing in Father Christmas, then we can start using him as ammunition.
 

Monday, 9 December 2013

Week 117- testicle spotting, pungent odours and having a boy...

It's a boy.

We're having a boy.

The sonographer said at least three times, 'I can see testicles!' during the scan so it's definitely, most definitely a boy.

We said that we wanted to find out for Nancy's benefit. That is would make it easier for her to understand.


But the truth is I think it was a bit more for us, well, me, to make it feel a bit more real.

I've been coasting through this second pregnancy in a kind of totally knackered fug. A gentle nod to what's going on in the inside by taking Pregnacare every morning and being so smell sensitive that walking past the air vents at the gym, pouring our the pungent odours of sweaty crotches and Lynx, sets my gag reflex off something chronic.

So I thought that by knowing the sex I could really 'engage with the process,' as one pregnancy website described it.

But now I know, I feel a bit weird about it.

With Nancy, she was just Pootle throughout the pregnancy.


She was this little non-gender mate who I carried for nine months and chatted to when I was on my own without feeling like a total mentalist.

Then when she was born, she was Nancy.


A member of our team.

A mewing creature who we watched with terror and amazement as she learnt to do stuff.

She was never really 'a girl.' Well she was. Is. But she was never defined by it when I was pregnant.

Now I'm almost thought by thought resisting the impulse genderize our unborn baby.

To think about him differently to Nancy.

People have said how nice it will be for Ben, as he'll have someone to take to the football.


But why can't Nancy go too? Will she be staying at home learning to bake with me? (Good luck with that, my cooking is rank.)

My point, I guess, is that I don't want to be making decisions as to what our little baby will like or the things we will encourage him to get involved in, just because we've seen a pair of balls in my womb.

But in the same breath, I did call him, 'my son,' the other day, and all the hairs on my neck stood up.

So the only real difference at the moment is that this time we have 4 months to get our heads round the fact that Tiddler is a boy.


Whereas with Nancy, we had about 4 seconds to digest that she was a girl before her slippy, sticky, warm, not yet unfurled body was handed to me.

And as long as they are both given the same opportunities then it won't matter if Nancy loves wearing frilly fuchsia dresses and Tiddler enjoys kicking a ball around with his dad.

Or visa versa.

Monday, 2 December 2013

Oral B Gum Health Ambassador article

Look what came through the post for me- YAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAY!



A pamper package. 
I don’t really get presents these days.

Apart from the odd parcel from e-bay. 

But that doesn’t really count as I’ve bought the stuff myself. 

And nine times out of ten it either stinks of fags when it turns up or I can’t squeeze into it.
But I digress.

The pamper package.


So Oral B were looking for Gum Health Ambassadors who were also pregnant, and I was like, herrrr hummm, *clears throat, sticks out gut*, ‘PICK ME!’
And they did.
So not only did I get the brilliant box of stuff through the post, but I also get to call myself Ambassador of something, which I’m delighted about as it feels a bit ferrero rocher.




They sent me some lovely posh stuff like Olay Total effects face cream, Max Factor false lash effect mascara and some Panetene Pro v hair moisturiser- all which was really thoughtful, especially as my face looks like it needs ironing and my hair feels like straw at the moment.
But the pièce de résistance was the most all singing all dancing electric toothbrush I’ve ever seen.

Now, I know it isn’t by chance that I’ve been sent this box of treats.
It’s because I’m pregnant, and basically your gums and teeth go to pot, along with the rest of your body when expecting. 

I’m talking bleeding gums, wobbly teeth; the works. 

Lovely stuff.

I've been to the dentist since becoming pregnant and he said my gums looked red and inflamed, and that I needed to take extra care throughout the rest of my pregnancy.

So anything to help with that is pretty fab with me. 

But this toothbrush is something else. The Oral B Triumph 5000 toothbrush has WiFi. 

We only got WiFi in our flat last year, and now I own a toothbrush that is connected via airwaves to a digital clock that not only tells me how long I’ve been brushing my teeth for, but what setting it’s on.


There are certain things you can’t control while pregnant- people asking if the midwife’s definitely got your dates right, for example.

And there are things you can.
Like looking after your gums.

I didn’t realise that between 50%-70% of women develop gum problems sometime during their pregnancy. 

To be honest, that’s one more thing I can live without. I’ve never been a size 8, or have hair you can swoosh like a Timotei advert, but I’ve always had good teeth.

And, as my grandma used to say, your teeth are your shop window. 

Not all that sure what she meant, but I went to school with a boy who only had three teeth and it was, without exception, the way you would describe him, even now.
Gum disease and crumbly teeth during pregnancy are just another headache you really don’t need.

So I’m definitely up for doing anything I can to help prevent that.
I’ve only been using my wowzer toothbrush for a week, but my teeth do feel different. Probably the first time they’ve been properly clean in about a decade. And my gums aren’t bleeding as much as they were. 

Still a bit grim, but less horror film esque.

I’ll keep you posted, but for the meantime I’m going to attempt to use all my pamper products tonight and see if it makes me look a little less Marilyn Manson 



and a little more Marilyn Monroe.



* For more info about gum health visit www.oralb-loveyourgums.com

PS- normal blog resumes next Sunday! x

Sunday, 24 November 2013

Week 116- stretch marks, stonewash jeans and second hand bras

It’s bonkers how quickly your body changes when pregnant.

One minute you can just about do up the last button on your Primark stonewash (impulse buy) jeans that are only really to be worn in the garden.
The next, you have to look in a full length mirror to see if you need to have a bikini wax as you can’t see past your tummy.

As if that isn't bad enough, I don’t have any decent clothes to wear, and am loathed to buy anything new. So am squeezing into pre-preggers clothes like a woman with chronic body dysmorphia.

There is nothing worse than seeing a pregnant gut hanging out of the bottom of your T-shirt.
Espesh in the freezing weather, as the chances are it’s not only covered in stretch marks from baby one, but also purple from cold.
Lovely stuff.
They say that you should be able to feel the baby moving about more second time round as you’re more familiar with the sensation.

But I’m inclined to disagree.

I thought Tiddler, as it is called for now, was having a bit of a stretch the other day so called Ben over to see if he could feel anything ‘from the outside’, just as I farted without warning.

Then the ‘moving’ stopped.

I’m turning into someone who has no control over bodily functions; I literally want to curl up in a big methane-infused ball and not come out again until after the baby’s been born.

I had to bite the bullet and buy new bras the other day, mind.
I’d passed on the nursing bras I used for Nancy to someone else, and can't for the life of me remember who that was.
And short of asking for them back on Facebook, which did feel a tad like social media suicide, I thought I should at least purchase one item in the next nine months.
So I bought some off E-bay.

New.

I have some standards.

But none-the-less, half the price of if I’d bought them in M and S.

Turns out they’re too small. Obviously.
But that’s not a reason to return them on E-bay. Soz I didn’t realise how massive my tits have got- can I have my tenner back please?
So instead I am going to have to endure wearing them over the foreseeable months.

The plus side is, I now look forward to coming home and taking off my bra.
In fact, you know when you’re comfortable at other people’s houses as you can take it off there are well.
If my pre-Nancy self could see my now self, I think we’d be having strong words.
There was a time not that long ago when my idea of a good night was going to the pub followed by a proper dance to cheesy music that makes you want to sweat your face off and move till your feet bleed.

Now that life feels very much like someone else's. I start to get a bit panicky if I'm up past 11 these days.

But at least there’s a mega ace prize at the end of all this- a new person to join our team.
I just have to remind myself of that on a Saturday night when the highlight is taking my bra off and eating a Twirl.

Monday, 18 November 2013

Week 115- fibbing, farting and staying at boys houses


Nancy’s learnt to fib. 

I’m not sure where from, but she has.

We’re staying at my mum’s house for a few days, which is ace, as Nancy wakes up and wants to play with Nanny so I get to have a lie in for the first time in what feels like two years. 

And I've started noticing little untruths she's saying, not only to her grandparents, but her plastic toys too. 

Nancy’s first whopper was when we’d gone over to see another set of grandparents, and she was sat with her Nanna, and was asked if she’d done a poo. 

To which she said she hadn’t. 

And when asked what the smell was, she totally straight faced, claimed, ‘it was Nanna.’

Genius.

She has also been drinking out of the bowl when having cereal at the childminders, which she’d told them she’d learnt to do from me.

Not so ace.

But it’s not the fact that she’s fibbing, as we all do that. 

It’s that she can do it while looking you straight in the eye, with no signs of cracking. 

She’s two, and will happily tell me she’s eaten all her carrots, for me to find she’s been sitting on them throughout dinner.

At the moment I’ve got to be extra vigilant, as I don’t really trust my memory either. 

The other morning Nancy claimed she’d already had her teeth brushed, but I assuming that she was telling a porky so brushed them again, only to remember later that I had already done them, as had Ben. 

Three times is quite a lot for a child who totally hates having it done once.

So I’ve got to keep my wits about me. 

Because girls are better at manipulating situations. I know. I am one.

Nancy may only be two, but I’m not going to let her catch me out.

It starts with them publically blaiming a fart on you, and ends with your 14 year old staying at over at a boys house they've met while on their GCSE work experience week having told you they’re staying with their best friend*.

*I've heard. 



Sunday, 10 November 2013

Week 114- headlocks, avocado sized babies and lying to the shop assistant in M and S...

I can’t cope with the lack of sleep being pregnant and having a two year old allows.

I know it’s THE most boring, repetitive conversation a parent can have.
Blah blah blah I’m tired.

Blah blah blah I could do with going to bed.
Blah blah blah the inside of my eyes feel prickly and I can’t remember if I’ve said the last thing out loud or just in my head as I’m so exhausted.

But.
Seriously.

I remember when I was pregnant with Nancy.
I’d get in from work about 6ish. Watch Neighbours while stretched out on the sofa. Doze until about 7.30. Eat something, then go to bed. Sleep nine hours, then roll out of bed at my own leisurely pace.


And everyone was interested in the pregnancy.
Friends wanted to know how I was feeling.

I’d get lovely texts from those I didn’t see so regularly saying they were thinking of me.
Family would talk excitedly about what it was going to be like, having a newborn in the family.

And I showed more interest too.
I knew exactly at what week the baby was the size of a walnut/ avocado/ honey dew melon.

I went to pregnancy yoga from week 12. I knew when I was at week 12. And 17. And 21. In fact I could, at any one time, tell you exactly how many days until my due date.
This time round, I’m lucky if I remember the midwife's appointment, let alone how pregnant I am.

On the whole, second pregnancies just don't seem as interesting to people as the first.
There was initial interest. Of course. But after the ‘surprise, we’re doing it again!’ convo, we might  as well have all locked that vital piece of info in the memory bank for the next few months.

That is apart from the daily reminder of the too tight jeans, heartburn and constant lack of breath.
Second time round is harder.

Much harder.
Now I know I got myself into this situation in the first place, so I’m not looking for sympathy.

But, jeez, it’s almost like the people who used to give up their seat for me on the bus know it’s baby number two, and don’t bother getting up, as if they’re subliminally telling me, ‘you had this seat two years ago. I’ve done my bit, fatty.’
 
 
The long restful nights of pregnancy one are now replaced with a 2am, 4am and often 6am wakeup call from Nancy asking me if it’s time to get up yet.

And after countless times of putting her back in her own bed, the meltdowns start to go off the Richter scale.

So we relent, and let her sleep in our bed, where she likes to hold onto my face whilst simultaneously digging her heels into my bladder, and almost instantly falls back to sleep.
While I’m being given a headlock by a two year old.

I know I’ve done this all before.
This pregnancy lark.

So this should be a walk in the park.
My body obviously remembers, that’s why the bump has popped out so quickly, making me look about three months further down the line than I actually am.

But I feel like my head’s not even a bit there.
I used to buy odd bits of baby clothes to make the bump feel like a baby when I was pregnant with Nancy.

But we’ve got drawers bursting at the seams of baby stuff so it’s not so much of a treat to go and hang around the child section of Marks and Sparks.
Maybe I should.

Nancy can go to the child-minder for the afternoon.
And I’ll peruse the new-born babygro section.

Tell the shop assistant that this is my first pregnancy, and see how she congratulates me and wishes me luck for the future, lost momentarily in nostalgia as she reminisces about her own first born.
Then I’ll go home, lie on the sofa and watch reruns of Come Dine with Me before having an afternoon snooze.

It will be like hitting the reset button, before continuing with real life.

Sunday, 3 November 2013

Week 113- researching plays, brilliant women and asking for your help...

I can’t remember whether I mentioned I’d started a theatre company with some friends back in 2008. 

I don’t remember a great deal these days, so that’s no surprise.
But I did.

I can’t take credit for the name, Dad thought it up.

Anyway, the reason I wanted to tell you about it, is cos we’re starting to research our new play.
 
And I need your help.
It’s called Three Generations of Women, and it’s an intergenerational play that will explore the lives of three British women, born in the 20s, 50s and 70s.

The play will question if life is easier for women now or whether they face the same challenges as their mothers and grandmothers but in different guises.

Things feel like they’re changing at the moment, and fast. Campaigns like the Everyday Sexism Project, No More Page 3 and Pink Stinks to name but a few, highlighting inequalities, prejudices and dated attitudes.
But is this just the tip of the iceberg?

We want to speak to women to gather their stories and experiences. We’re building a website at the moment, but in the meantime there’s a facebook group- https://www.facebook.com/threegenerationsofwomen
We are also going to be meeting with groups of women in Brighton, Leeds and London to have an informal chat about what it is to grow up as a woman in Britain.

We’ll be in Leeds on Tuesday 19 November at 3pm, meeting in a central location, so if you live round that way, drop me a line on brokenlegtheatre@yahoo.co.uk so I can give you some more details as I would LOVE to have a brilliant group of fantastic women to talk to.

I want to write something that reflects what women ACTUALLY think, instead of having a guess based on my limited experience.
I know this post is a shameless plug.

But I also know I’ve been contacted by some absolutely brilliant, inspiring women since starting this blog a couple of years ago.

And I know there are loads more that I haven’t yet had contact with.

So I thought there’s no harm in asking you for your help.

Because at the end of the day, the worst you can say is no.

Actually you could say loads worse than that, but PLEASE don’t cos it’s been a sleep-deprived weekend, I’m a whirlwind of hormones at the moment, my boobs have grown by two cup sizes in weeks and not in a good way, and I may just burst into an ugly cry with no obvious end in sight.
Sooooo... if you fancy meeting us in Leeds, let me know, if not I’ll keep you up-to-date as to when the website will be launched so you can share your stories with us through that if you're up for it.

So that’s it.
Oh. Apart from I’m going to have a baby slap bang in the middle of writing the play.
But I'll cross that bridge when I come to it...

Monday, 28 October 2013

Week 112- decaf tea, resting your eyes and eating your body weight in Twirls...

Being pregnant again is not how I imagined it to be.

Actually I'm not sure what I thought it would be like.

But not like this anyhow.

One the one hand I've totally embraced the idea, having all but entirely stopped going to the gym the moment the baby was confirmed.

I can't believe how massive I am already.

I know this probably isn't helped by mainlining Twirls after most meals, but this can't all be chocolate.

Bodies must remember and just pop out. I think possibly more so with the unfit body variety where tummy muscles aren't so evident.

After my 12 week scan someone asked me if I'd just had the 20 week one. I was delighted. Obviously.

I'm out of breath all the time. I only need to walk up a very slight incline and I'm wheezing like a pervy crank caller.

And as if that's not enough, I'm more tired than I've been in living memory. This is the kind of tired where I could rest my eyes 'for a moment' on the bus to work and wake up at the depo.

But the flip side of it is there's no time to really think about being pregnant, or consider that there's someone in there.

In fact Nancy probably talks about the baby more than us.

She likes to pull up my top and kiss my tummy and tell the baby she's its big sister.

She also likes to smack my stomach as hard as she can, whilst pre-empting the apology she'll have to give by saying 'it's not funny, is it mummy?', mid wallop.

When I was pregnant with Nancy, she had a name. Pootle.

We talked about 'it' most nights. How our life would change. What kind of parents we might be. What it might look like.

I religiously watched 'One Born Every Minute', trying to imagine what it would be like when it was my turn, while crying my face off every time a new mum was passed her newborn.

But this time, and I feel dreadful saying this, I sometimes forget I'm pregnant.

Not entirely, obviously.

There's no way you can ignore a gut this massive.

I mean I forget there's something actually growing in there.

A baby.

My baby.

I guess this is what happens after your first child. Life continues. And you just get on with it.

But I'm going to try and make space in my head to think about this little guy and how the three of us are going to become four.

Maybe while having another cup of bloody decaf tea, and my third Twirl of the day.

Sunday, 20 October 2013

Week 111- gender specific clothes, pink feathers and red Y-fronts...

Nancy and I had an important trip into town the other day with only one thing on the shopping list.

Pants.
Nancy was going to choose some big girls pants before we begin the challenging process of potty training. (WHY didn’t we start this in the summer when it’s standard to run round the garden with no clothes on, instead of watching endless episodes of Peppa Pig freezing your bits off sat on a potty during winter...)

Nancy was very clear about what she wanted. Yellow, green and red pants.
My sister had given her some vouchers for GAP so I thought that would be a good place to start.
Her first pair of pants would cost the same as the autumn coat I’d just bought on E-bay.

And then she’d be in Asda pants like the rest of her family.
Now, I wasn’t expecting to be overwhelmed with choice.

But for about the millionth time since having Nancy, we’re faced with yet another example of gender specific clothes.
Nancy is two years old.

She fluctuates on a daily basis from describing herself as a little girl to a big boy. She thinks the only difference between mummy and daddy is that daddy’s got a ‘tail.’
She does NOT need her first pair of pants to say petit princess on the front.

WTF?
The only GAP kids shop in Brighton had a small but insulting range of pastel coloured underwear plastered with pictures of ballet dancers, sparkles, or princess related paraphernalia.

Whereas for the boys, there were bold coloured (yellow, green and red, as requested by Nancy) underwear with the days of the week written on the bum.
Fun clothes. Durable clothes.

Things that gave the message that you can get grubby in them. You can play.
Not that you’re a precious, fragile creature who needs to keep clean and wear glitter.
If Nancy wants to dress head-to-toe in pink feathers and sparkles. Fine. Absolutely fine.

But give her a choice. It’s that simple. Choice.

Don’t make me as her mother have to make a pitiful decision between violet or dusty pink.
Her clothes only get filthy within moments of stepping outside.

I don’t know whether such a company exists but I think a manufacturer somewhere must be producing clothes that are non-gender specific for under 3’s that don't cost the earth.
If not, there is a clear gap in the market.

In fact, I feel so strongly about this that if there aren’t companies producing fun clothes which can be worn by young children of both sexes then a campaign should be started.

I want Nancy to have choice. A proper choice.
Not just in what she wears, but in every aspect for of her life.
But for now, I will start with her choice to wear yellow, green and red pants from a mainstream high street shop that aren’t a pair of bloody Y-fronts.

Monday, 14 October 2013

Week 110- keeping schtum, eating beige and having another baby...

You know when you really want to talk about something so much it aches a bit?

But you know you can't.

Which makes you want to say it more.

Well that's what the last three months have been like.

Keeping schtum when really I wanted to just blurt out like a post-curry burp, 'I'M PREGNANT!'

Right. I've said it. It's out there. It's definitely happening.

I've always wanted a brother or sister for Nancy.

I don't know how I would have survived the long camping trips in France looking at ANOTHER glacier with my geographer parents if it wasn't for my sister. I speak to her everyday, and although she drove me nuts at times when we were little, she's now one of my bestest friends.

I want that for Nancy.

The thing is, I've totally forgotten what it's like to have a tiny baby.

I know what a two year old does. I just about know how to do that.

But a baby?

It's like my brain's systematically filtered out everything pre 24 months.

I can't remember how often I used to feed Nancy. When she started rolling. I don't know how old she was when she could sit up. When her first tooth came through. I literally can't remember any of the key moments.

I thought second time round would be easy. Well. Not easy exactly, but less surprises.
 
Turns out that might not be the case.
 
Turns out I might to have to read back my own bloody blog to find out what I did!

I can't quite believe it.
 
Well, I can.
 
The fact that everything has smelt absolutely grim for the last 12 weeks and I haven't been able to eat anything other than beige bland food.

But it's the practicality that in six months time we'll have a teeny, mewing little person, who's little fingers furl and unfurl. Who will sleep on my chest like a mini hot water bottle with frog-like legs curled tight up to it's chest.

I haven't even begun to think about how you survive with two children.

I know it can be done.
 
Of course.
 
But how does it work on a day-to-day basis?
 
How do you do it and get everyone dressed? How do you practically leave the house? How do you entertain a two year old when you've got to feed a newborn?
 
I've got so used to sleeping again that I can't really remember what it's like to feel like you're going totally mental from sleep deprivation. For your body to not feel like your own. For your boobs to swing between looking like Jordan's tits to old socks on a feed-by-feed basis.

I guess we'll work it out as we go along.

Or better still, Ulrika is also having a baby in 7 weeks, so my master plan is to see how they do it and work it out from there... 

Sunday, 6 October 2013

Week 109- the Twits, Wentworth Prison and growing up fast...

I’ve been having a bit of a clear out as I realised that Nancy was going to the childminder’s in clothes that are over a year too small for her and she was looking a bit like one of the Twits.


It was time to face the fact that she is quite a little girl now, and can no longer squeeze into the baby gros she used to wear.

Well she can, but I think if she continues to sleep in them, they might stunt her growth.

As I sat in her room surrounded by piles of stuff, I suddenly got lost in it all.
I know this is the ultimate cliché, but I don’t know where the time has gone.

I’m looking at these titchy gros and teeny booties that an army of mum’s friends knitted for her.
And I can’t imagine that she was ever tiny enough to fit into any of them.

But at the same time, it only feels like yesterday that Ben was spoon feeding me carbs, as I rode out another wave of contraction, while intermittently watching the boxette of Prisoner Cell Block H which I’d purchased from a closing down Blockbuster, as a labour distraction.
 
(Disclaimer- I used to watch Prisoner Cell Block H with a group of friends when we were in our early teens so I’d bought it for one of them as a joke birthday present. Then thought I’d have a quick watch first. Then totally got into it. Then went into labour. Saying that, have you SEEN Wentworth Prison? If you thought Cell Block H was good...)

I have a daughter. With an opinion. And a clear idea of what she does and doesn’t like.
Like’s include Peppa Pig, picking her nose and wiping it on my trousers, playing/ squabbling with her best friend Ebba and cold baked beans.

Dislikes include tomatoes, sleeping in her own bed, wearing her shoes on the correct feet and warm baked beans.
At what point do our babies become ‘people’?

When do they start making decisions?
I naively assumed it was when she had a good enough vocabulary, but really, that was just the point when she could articulate what she wanted.
She’s been forming opinions about things since she could fit into those tiny baby gros.

I guess what I’m trying to say in a roundabout, tired Sunday-night kind of way, is that I need to listen to her more.
To hear her stories about which toy she’s putting to bed, and why the others have been banished to the sofa.

To sit with her and eat imaginary cake and drink  pretend tea.

To play hide and seek, where I close my eyes, count to ten and then when I open them she hasn’t moved so I have to pretend I can’t see her.

Because, for now anyway, Ben and I are her world.
She wants to tell us what’s going on in her head, because we’re  not only her parents, but also her mates.

But this isn’t going to last.
And before I know if, I’ll be sitting on her bedroom floor packing up the clothes she’s wearing now.

As she insists we go and see her friends as I’m no fun to play with anymore.