I started writing this blog post on the 10th October. The fact that I am only getting around to posting it now is not down to the fact that I am the world’s slowest writer, but instead down to being a new mum. Anyone who has a newborn join their family will testify that it is rare that you can start something and actually finish it – cups of tea being up there on the unfinished list. Cold tea is fast becoming the tea of choice in our household. Along with a tepid cup of tea my new dietary state moves between being utterly famished to five minutes later popping indigestion tablets faster than the meal I scoffed down landing me in this state.
And so, as we face the world as a family of four with the additional ‘challenge’ of two under twos (yes, that’s actually a thing) I shall take the time, amongst the chaos, to share with you some observations. I apologise in advance if this results in a senseless stream of consciousness, but hope it will make more sense than most of my conversations of late. This brings me nicely onto my first point. Words. I used to know so many and was even known to string some of them together to make a sentence – yet they seem to escape me now in my sleep deprived state. Most notably recalling the name of my newborn seems to be quite the challenge. If you remember baby Leo was affectionately nicknamed Tata ahead of his arrival. Tata has now been downgraded to the less affectionate ‘thingy’, as I struggle to find the energy to muster up the name we so lovingly selected for our latest offspring. Before he can remember anything Tata will be back on the tip of my tongue.
Moving on to the home. The lounge was once a place to relax, dine and play, but since the time of our new arrival overnight it has turned into a battlefield of plastic weapons of mass baby destruction. We have quickly reaslised that all the harmless objects Lucas entertains himself with are now potential life threatening objects when hurtling across the room aiming to take out ‘thingy’. Lego takes on a whole new lease of life when it has the ability to damage your defenseless three-week old when in the frivolous hands of his older brother. Poor Lucas has found his toy basket getting emptier by the day in a bid to protect his new sibling – yet another reason for him to question the upside of this new family member. Let’s face it there is a fine line between love and jealousy in these early days between brothers.
On to my next observation. GUILT. Bundles of it. Guilt over the lack of time you are giving your firstborn who up until now was used to having your undivided attention. Guilt over the lack of time you can give your newborn that your firstborn was so lucky to have before the newborn came along! Guilt for not having enough time to lovingly prepare a home cooked meal for your family – ok, ok not so much that one – after all what is Just Eat for after all? In my guilt ridden state I attempt to ease the lack of attention challenge which often ends in a scene not dissimilar to something from Three Men and a Baby. Today I found myself trying to grab a bite to eat, whilst simultaneously giving baby number one lunch and breastfeeding baby number two. The result was throwing segments of tangerine across the table aiming to land on baby number one’s high chair and shouting ‘catch’ – a concept he hasn’t yet grasped. I have also attempted to change a nappy of one child one-handed whilst reading and singing the much loved wheels on the bus book to the other one as he pulls on my arm for attention. I’m finding being coated in pee brings out the singer in me. Don’t get me wrong I have lots of help around me, but nine times out of ten only mama will do. Multi-tasking takes on levels I never thought existed. FYI it also helps to have wipeable books.
Before I fall asleep at the keyboard my final observation relates to a case of mistaken identity. That identity would be mine. Let’s just say I won’t be surprised that if one day in the not too distant future when I venture out of the house in my current disheveled state (having taken three hours to actually get out of the door) people will start throwing spare change at me as they mistake me for some sort of bag lady with the amount of kid paraphernalia I cart around. How hard can it be to run a brush through your hair I hear you ask. Have a baby and come back to me on that, meanwhile there’s a lukewarm cup of tea with my name on it…