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Wednesday, 16 November 2011

The funniest face of all - a sign of the times

There are many classic baby expressions. Pooched flattened lip Oh-this-looks-really-good-I'll-put-this-in-my-mouth-now Face. Adorable. Puffy squashy eyed Wake Up Face. Very sweet. Crying super scrunched and frowning Angry Grandpa Face. Hideous. There is one face that always delivers a good laugh though, there is nothing on earth quite like it. Poo Face.

Poo Face has such a distinctive expression. There is no question, you know what's going on back there. The slightly crossed eyes, watery; the red face; the ultra funny face-spanning 'smile' which is the piece de resistance. The effort put forth through that face also astounds me in the disproportionate nature of what results. The amount of grunting and panting and repeated administration of Poo Face makes me think I'll pick the little fellow up and find a real whopper, only to discover one little shiny boat shaped deposit instead.

This wasn't always the case though. A few weeks ago I started weaning the baby, and because of my previous education via child number 1 and 2, I switched from my washable diapers to disposables in anticipation. There are certain periods of....let's call it....digestive unrest in a baby's life which causes horrific things to happen back there. Weaning is one of those times where you need to prepare for some serious volume and frequency changes. All that new fiber is like a dam on a waterfall....then the dam bursts.

The first digestive unrest in life results from just being born. It is the absolutely vile green Tar Poo phase, a sludge that cannot be removed from anything, the baby's bottom, your hands, your clothes, your hair (GROSS!!!!)... anything touched by this seemingly-developed-by-NASA impenetrable coating needs something akin to paint thinner to get it off. I remember a friend told me she was horrified with her new baby, and thought she really was in for a long haul, when she believed that the vile green tar was it, that's what 'baby poo' was like, forever. I cannot imagine anyone ever having repeat children if that was the case, the stuff is so awful, so sinister. What is a mother to think though, if the concept of baby Tar Poo is not explained as a passing phase? You'd just think 'Hmmmmm. I love this child, and this life of sticky awful poo I have committed to is just part of a Mother's Job, right? Jezuss what kind of monster have I created??!![runs away screaming]'. Consequently she was extremely relieved and pleasantly surprised when the Tar phase ended within a few days.

Mothers are then shocked again by the next poo assault: Mustard Soft Serve. My first dose of this bright yellow ice cream poo occurred while I was at my mum's house visiting with my sister and her husband, and their new baby too. Me, clueless to what might occur, lifted up the baby's legs innocently to change his diaper - and the scene suddenly changed to me standing over a soft serve ice cream machine, pulling the dispensing lever up, and the soft serve just kept coming and coming and coming, and every time the lever was put down and up again the more 'ice cream' flowed. "Help, Help" I yelled for my sister desperately "It won't stop! Get something, anything, quick!". I was holding the baby up in the air now practically on top of his head upside down, as the Mustard Soft Serve swirled in creamy piles beneath him, encroached steadily. I only had one free hand trying to gather the mess, contain it in the diaper (hardly, as if), wipe the baby down, and get some new poo retainment devices. It took all of us in a valiant team effort to contain the situation.

The early month of Mustard Soft Serve 6 times a day mercifully settles to a frequency of once every 3 - 5 days, thus months 1.5 - 5 go by without much trouble. The occasional 'Poonami' occurs (thank you sister for that term) but generally tolerable. Definition: Poonami - a high volume and/or high speed baby poo incident that has the capability to cover an entire tabletop/curtains/wall and any adults present, or for very certain at least the curtains. And the wall.

Once that first spoon of baby rice goes in, though, that's it. Better put on your waterproofs, it's going to get messy. For this phase of digestive unrest I have decided to spare my precious washable nappies from such frequent and dreadful messes. I always actively avoided poos happening in the diapers anyway, I mean, so much so the moment I saw a glimpse of Poo Face I whipped the diaper off and would rather 'catch' the poo rather than let something awful happen in the diaper. I'd lay the baby down on the changing table with a wipe strategically positioned ready as a landing bay. Sounds disgusting? Yes, I know. But even more disgusting is trying to wipe off baby paste from the elasticated furry sides of a washable diaper hanging over a pooey toilet, then putting the pasty diaper into my beautiful clean washing machine. I let the disposable wipe(s) do the talking and walking then. All part of a Mother's Job. So my washables have been benched for a month, taking sabbatical in the bottom drawer while with blissful leisure I thrown on a Huggy. Ahhhhhhh. Such leisure it is, I am actually quite enjoying myself. I feel really spoiled. Well worth the extra cost, because my baby who pooed pretty consistently every 3 days has been transformed into a total poo machine, no exaggeration, 8 - 12 poos a day. And I am telling you, they aren't pretty. In fact they remarkably look and smell pretty much exactly like what went in, it's like nothing happened at all in between.

My baby book advises that pear should be given with the baby rice to avoid constipation. Are you kidding me, lady?? Constipation? More like 35 kids all having a go loading and reloading play-doh into a fun factory, each with a different colour too.

All produced with the hilarious and oh-so-charming Poo Face. It almost makes me look forward to changing all those diapers.

Monday, 17 October 2011

The Milk Chronicles

I have been breastfeeding the baby, as all the government health propaganda has been telling me to. I have also been giving one bottle a day, which I have done from the first week of the little lad's life. This is to make sure that when I do decide to stop breastfeeding, I don't run into any monkey business of bottle refusal. I like breastfeeding, and there are no problems, but I do like knowing that I could stop anytime when I decide to - the thought of being 'trapped', forced into some sort of twisted contract to be sucked on unceremoniously five times a day against my will makes me cringe. If it sounds perverted, it really sort of is. And that's for at least a whole year, *shudder*. So I've been keeping his bottle skills up every day, 10:30 pm.

I had been convinced also (advised most certainly in a well known baby care publication) that I must pump my own breastmilk at this time, to keep up my milk supply. The fruits of this labour often being enjoyed, although without their knowledge, by the older boys in their morning milk - which became a bit of a milk frankenstein containing some percentage combination of breastmilk, leftover formula feed, and regular cow's milk - delicious! Bleaaarrrggghh! But they didn't seem to mind, or even notice for that matter. I did ask my oldest boy once if he wanted to have some of 'mummy's milk' in his cup...but he gave me a stink eye like I just offered him some worms on a stick. Better left in the dark on these matters, they are. Contrast this with my sister's daughter, who is two, as when she spots the bottle of breastmilk in the fridge she knows she is in for a treat. "That's Auntie Headder's Special Milk!" and gobbles it up happily, well in the know. My sister is convinced that the milky tincture might help to cure her kids of their colds and whatnot, due to it's antibody containing superpowers. I'd also like to believe this is true, even a little bit, which is why my other folks ended up with their strange brew in the mornings.

Scratch that. About two weeks ago I decided to ditch the ballyhoo that was pumping. I am sure my husband doesn't miss the 'pssshhhht pssshhhht pssshhhht, pssshhhht pssshhhht pssshhhht' that required the volume to be cranked waaaay up on the TV, at 10 pm each night. Each and every night. Every single night. Months of nights, every night. You really can see why one might not want to continue with the pumping. Being forced to be sucked on unceremoniously five times a day is just tolerable, and even acceptable, sometimes enjoyable, when it is by a creature who you love and wish to thrive. To then add on being suctioned repeatedly pssshhhht pssshhhht pssshhhht by some kind of silicone nipple stretching torture apparatus is another concept. As my visiting childless male friend commented when he was boldly faced with my exposed pumping ritual, "Oh my GOD I can't believe HOW FAR your nipple goes out...I mean, oh my GOD!!!!!". It is grotesque, yet a thing of (un)natural wonder.

There was also the issue of dining out. Other ladies about the town might have a few essentials in their handbag: lipstick; money; maybe handcream, and their large shoulder bags were worn with a sense of fashion. On the occasion that I were to head out for the evening, my gigantic bag was gigantic for a far more functional purpose - armed with my lipstick, money, handcream and breast pump (!) I was ready for a hot night out. As 9:45 pm approached I would smile and comment to my friends that I was going to go do 'it' now, and slipped off to the wheelchair accessible bathroom. Thank goodness for those large single access toilets; I needed a bit of elbow room. Additionally I can't imagine what someone would have thought in a stall next to me: pssshhhht pssshhhht pssshhhht slosh slosh creak eee ooonnn eee onnnn creak pssshhhht pssshhhht pssshhhht shuffle shuffle. I do wonder, though, what any waiter who saw me go in thought as I was there for a good 10 minutes, making all those strange noises I am quite sure a young 20-something male would certainly not be familiar with. So there's me in my pretty silk dress in the bathroom, fluorescent light, assembling my apparatus; sitting on the toilet, and because I didn't have a muslin, stuffing toilet paper underneath my 'pumping boob', and holding wads of toilet paper with my other elbow onto my 'other boob', pumping away. This is because pumping is a drippy, spray-ey business - I always needed a boob bib under the pump, and a funny old thing it is, when you pump one breast the other one activates and starts spraying all over on it's own! The front dash of my car is a testament to this, which has a sort of milk-art splatter dried onto the stereo and air controls. Not a bad look, really. Well, I haven't wiped it off yet anyway.

As the 10:30 pm bottle will likely be dropped soon, I thought it wise to start to give a bottle at another time. I was a bit nervous about this, and rightfully so. A wide awake hungry baby is a completely different creature to face with a silicone teat compared to a mostly-sleeping-not-really-bothered-either-way baby. And hungry daytime baby totally spazzed. Hungry daytime baby was like a satanic multi-snake headed monster, all of the snake heads hissing and screaming at me "Give me the BOOB what is this imposter!!! Grrrrrrrrrr BOOB!!! *slobber*scream*" But I wanted him to be able to have the bottle. But he was totally spazzing. But I had to have him have the bottle. I had to persevere - I couldn't let all those months of late night bottle feeding be ruined by this evil boob-loving monster. I had just had a conversation with friends about mums being stuck with fussy bottle-takers who required standing and rocking to have the milk from a bottle, and I didn't want to get into any of that...but there I was, reduced to standing and rocking and singing and slyly bringing the bottle up to his mouth from underneath (like he wouldn't notice, HA). So every time he started sucking with any frequency I slowly...slowly... easy does it... squatted down to the chair. I had to keep every muscle tensed in the exact same way, because the moment anything shifted in the slightest he would start to fuss and fret again, and up I would get back to standing and singing and rocking. And even against my compulsive nature, as I saw a big drip of milk go down his chin, now under his chin, approaching his shirt down his neck [*cringe* I just HAD to catch the drip with the bib I just HAD to] I left the drip to travel all the way down in torturous slow motion, drip, to be absorbed into his shirt. Absolutely still. I did it. And he did it. One bottle down, phew. The evil boob-loving monster seems to have accepted his fate now also, after a few days of my squatting muscle tensed bottle sessions. I can even dab his neck a bit when the milk dribbles, and thank god for that.

So now the older boys aren't getting any of mummy's Special Milk anymore, and the little one is taking his Unspecial Milk alright too; none seem worse for wear. Already I have breastfed this time longer than with the other kids, so really I feel like anything longer is a bit of a bonus. And I don't feel half as annoyed with it as I had before, it really is still quite OK. As long as I know I can get out of this twisted contract when I want to.

Tuesday, 4 October 2011

A lovely Saturday afternoon

*WHAM*. The boot then bounces back up and open. I bring my hand up to my nose as I back away from the car, a bit shocked; I can now feel my hand filling with blood.

The weather has taken a turn for the better, with a freak October heat wave that has had everyone out in flip flops again. Saturday morning was baking hot and gorgeous, but we didn't have an outing because I was tied up having to collect my unsold items from the sale at the school. A few too many unsold items for my liking, but that's the way it goes. As the kids were all sleeping for their lunch naps, my husband and I were deciding what to do - we couldn't let this last chance hot sunny weekend go to waste, it was like a little extra gift of summer before the cold wet drudgery season began. "Where can we go?" husband asks. "I don't know! Look up on the computer, see if there are any kids events or anything going on..." I say. "Look where? You should know where to go, you are the one that takes the kids places!" "I don't know...I take them to the animal shelter and wherever...let's find something else." He rummages on the computer for a while and returns with a suggestion. "You'll just say no anyway, you never want to do what I suggest...." he says, grouchily. Now, of course, I feel like no matter what, I have to say yes to whatever his suggestion is just so I don't feel like a jerk. (This is a charming glimpse of the inner workings of how 5 years of marriage decision-making is achieved). He suggests going to Paxton Pits or the country park, just down the road a few miles, to have a forest walk. Actually this is not a bad idea, and I agree, thankful that I didn't have to agree to something like going to the landfill site or taking the toddlers fly fishing.

Then I had a flash of a really good idea. "OH, I have a really good idea!" I say to my husband. The now-smug-feeling me suggests going to the miniature railway at Audley End. It is about an hours drive away, and would be a load more effort, but with such nice weather the day deserved it, really. The boys have been once before, and loved it - what little boy doesn't love to ride a mini railway through the forest, and then have a picnic after jumping on a giant bouncy giraffe? We would have to get ready quick though - with the more grand outing planned we had to make sandwiches and trimmings for a picnic supper, make sure the nappy bag was really well stocked, get the buggy in the car, wake the kids up and feed the baby early so we could get going in time, get cooler bags from the garage - I even packed for the kids their camping chairs - we were set for a really awesome afternoon out. Rush rush rush to get ready. The car was loaded up, and I gave a great big haul on the boot hatch, as one does, to shut it all in.

That's when the fateful *WHAM* happened.

Holding my nose, not quite sure what exactly has happened, I come into the house still in a bit of a shocked state. "Injured! Injury....injury....! Come please!!!!" I yell upstairs as I gingerly make my way to the front hall bathroom, dreading what I will find in the mirror. Both the impact and the downward force of the boot onto my face had sort of smashed down a flap of tissue spanning across the bridge of my nose, right between the eyes. I also wondered if I had broken my nose...but I would have to wait a little while to see if everything puffed black and blue to find that out. I grabbed a wad of paper towel and held it with some pressure to hold the flap into place, and catch the blood. At that point also I couldn't help but start crying like a bit of a sissy, it was really starting to hurt! Then I hear "Mummy...mummy....I've done a pooooooooooooo!" the familiar call of my oldest son; he needs his bum wiped. 'Where is my husband??' I am thinking...I go upstairs, and the poor child sees me all teary and bloody, with a big wad of bloody paper on my face. I can see his eyes start welling up, and he looks really sad, and sort of worried. "Mummy, what happened? Are you alright?" "Yes! [overly smiley] mummy's fine! I just had a little accident! Mummy is just bleeding a little bit - don't worry, daddy will fix it." Mummy, really, was not fine.

He then tells me he would like a new shirt, as this one was 'really wet'. Oh no, I think. I sink a little bit - that means he has weed on the bed in his sleep, all the bed things will need changing. One handed, (the other holding my bloody face together) I manage to wipe his bum, and struggly-wiggle his wet shirt off of him. I go to investigate his bed, still crying, bloody and holding my face husband is now with me and we strip his sodden sheets off. My husband has some things ready to fix up my face. Luckily in our household, when these types of things happen, we have all the equipment and expertise handy as my husband is a surgeon. Unluckily, it seems these types of things happen quite often. I guess I married the right guy then, considering my proneness to personal injury.

I get laid down right there on the stripped bed, weepy me, husband tending, and an audience of one three year old. I keep saying to my husband "Hurry...hurry...I need to feed the baby. I need to get the baby up." but still feeling very eerie and teary. I for some reason felt like I had to get all this fixed and get going. I for some reason felt like, 'Dammit! We're going to be late! How annoying!' In retrospect, how ridiculous of me! I do cling to my routine with the kids though, apparently 'til the death....

And what a sweetie my little boy is, while he is watching me get 'fixed'. "It's alright mummy, you'll be okay...", and as my husband is applying the skin glue and the steri-strips "That's it, almost done now mummy, you're doing really well!", and as the last bandage is going on "Last one now mummy, that's ok now, all done." I realize he is repeating all the things we have said to him when he has been injured or needed tending to. It really did make me feel better though...there is something about lying there knowing you are injured but not knowing quite how badly, but in pain and bleeding, and someone else doing something to you but you don't really know what is going on - it made me feel really teary, and I had a bit of a panicky feeling. My little boy, who is so little, saying all those reassuring things - how cute, how sweet, how... mature. He really helped.

Patched up, I wake the baby (Late!Arrrgh!) and sit to feed him. Looking around I see bloody paper towels, a groggy grouchy woken-up middle son, a still weepy-worried oldest son, and a great big pile of wet sheets for washing. I feel a bit weary and sheepish. I look at my husband.

"Can we just go to the country park now instead?" *wimper*

Wednesday, 28 September 2011

The Fear

The other day I felt a little sick. Not much, just a little off. I also had a bit of a cold, the slightly stuffy claggy-down-the-back-of-the-throat kind. Nothing to write home about, really...and then I brushed my teeth. The claggy-down-the-back-of-the-throat feeling combined with the tooth brushing gave me what recently had been a very familiar feeling. GAG. Retch-gag. My first thought was 'Well, that was a bit yucky' followed swiftly by my eyes bulging open in an 'Oh NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!' expression. Good lord, no. Impossible. I CANNOT be pregnant again...I mean, I've even had an installation to prevent such occurrences. The feeling was SO pregnancy-gag though. Good lord, no.

The Fear.

I have The Fear very badly now. I thought before that there was no way I could manage being pregnant with the other two kids, wait, not just pregnant but then having three kids (!) - the implications on working, finances, space, relationships...but I didn't have the fear of it because I never saw it coming, and assumed it wouldn't happen. Ok so fine it did happen and in the end it was alright. But now FOR SURE there is no way I could manage being pregnant again, no way. Not now certainly, not ever (?). (I have added a question mark because I suppose never say never - my husband did mention perhaps another one. Interestingly, this was while I was in the birthing pool of all places and times to choose such a discussion. Maybe part of his plan, of course, because the likely answer at that particular junction was of course a snarling "Are you out of your mind??!!") With my new ever-constant dose of The Fear on board, I had booked an appointment ASAP for a NMBP device (No More Babies Please) named Mirena, as soon as I was eligible, 6 weeks after the birth of lovely baby number 3.

I saw the GP who then asked me a series of questions about this and that, why do I want a coil fitted etc., which she then answered out loud for herself as she looked at my file on the computer screen:

Child 1: aged 3
Child 2: aged 1
Child 3: aged 0

"Oh yes, well, I think this is a very sensible decision indeed!" she said. I had to agree.

As I was booked in for my Mirena fitting I was offered an appointment which was three days prior to my husband returning from his fellowship away, or the next available slot was in 4 weeks time. "Yes please, the early one please, yes book it right away!!!" I replied, almost panicky. I couldn't even fathom taking the chance of my husband's return, of him even being beside me, or being in the same room as me, or being in the same country as me, without adequate protection. The receptionist I am sure could sense The Fear, and booked me right away.

Since my installation I definitely feel 'safer' in a more permanent, yet non-permanent fixture sort of way. This thing will last me five years, five years of no worries! Five whole long years of no babies! Yet I can whip it out if I feel some crazed need for yet more children. What I hadn't bargained for was the (what it seems like) five years of constant bleeding. ARRRGGGHHH. When you are breastfeeding part of the 'pro' department is that you don't get your period for ages, perhaps even the whole time you are breastfeeding and sometime afterwards. This cursed Mirena, since the very moment it has joined me, has caused spotting - with no end in sight. Of course this is a listed side effect, but, really, REALLY???? it has been three months already I've had it and I have not been without underwear and a liner. ARRRGGGHH again! I thought the breastfeeding would counteract this evil effect, but it hasn't. On the bright side, as a method of birth control this constant bleeding side of things is certainly effective, limiting any *activity* to the confines of the shower stall to avoid

I also thought naively that it would be put in, and I wouldn't even know it was there at all. I guess I get on with life and I effectively don't really know it is there, but I know it is there by the crazy wiry strings hanging about *in there*!!! They are crazy! And wiry! And I so notice them. How strange. At my follow up appointment the GP had a look and she even had to sort them out, my crazy wiry strings, as they were "all tangled up"! Bizarre. It is so worth it though. Knowing I don't have to have The Fear anymore.

Until that other morning that is, until the pregnancy-gag toothbrushing incident. My eyes bulging open in the 'Oh NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!' expression, I do what any panic-in-the-moment woman would do - bust the pregnancy tests out. I knew it was impossible, but was it merely improbable? I do seem to be a fertile lady...if someone were to get pregnant with one of these things installed it would be me, I just knew it. I had 8 leftover test strips from my cheapo internet pregnancy test order from the last scare, and cracked one open, did the deed. As I was waiting, it struck me as a novelty that this test, actually, will likely be negative. Any other test I had taken was planned, or I had just known would be positive. This time deep down I did know it would be negative, but because of The Fear, I just had to check, I just had to be sure. Negative. Phew.

So now I have 7 tests left, to calm any future irrational symptoms of pregnancy that come up in the next five years. Don't get me wrong; I love my kids, and I wouldn't trade my circumstances for the world - although the little one was a surprise he is the best surprise of my life and I couldn't imagine life without him as a part of our family. As he is likely the last baby I will have I am also really appreciating every moment, and holding him a little longer after his night feed so he can snuggle sleepily into my arms, pooching his sleepy lips, nuzzling his sleepy head. I am really paying attention to all of his moments, I don't want to miss a thing.

Hold on then, make that 6 tests to calm my irrational symptoms. I'll save the last one just in case my husband does become out of his mind again...and I feel like having another nighttime baby snuggle - just in case I missed something the first three times.

Until then, me and my new best friend Mirena are getting along just fine. I might even go have a shower to celebrate.

Wednesday, 21 September 2011

Things that bump in the night

Cough cough. cough cough cough. Cough. Thud. Moooooaaan. moan moan moan. Moan. moan.

The sounds are from middle son's room, 10 pm-ish. He just turned two in August, and on the weekend we took the side off his cot; the Big Boy Bed. Although he is in these sort of 'training sheets' that zip up the side so he doesn't fall out of bed easily, he still has managed to sausage his way out of the roll, if you will. The zipper makes the duvet into a sleeping bag type situation, the duvet now attached to the bottom sheet which is attached to the mattress. With a built in pillow too. Theoretically he could get up and walk about with the mattress strapped to his back if he liked, little legs out the bottom...that would be a precious sight! Anyway, out the top he must have come, as when I went in the room his little face was pressed on the floor alongside one shoulder, the rest of him suspended by the one remaining foot still up on the bed. Why he stayed like that while awaiting rescue I don't know, perhaps he didn't want to get up and around in the dark - given, he must have also been in a bit of a shock delirium being just torn from sleep so suddenly. Bless.

'Oh dear, have you fallen out?'
'Yes, fall out bed!'
'Are you OK?'
'Let's get back in then'

What might have been a simple insertion at that point did not occur. For some reason, he made himself stiff as a board, so as I was trying to bend him to get him back into the cocoon I only succeeded in lifting him up repeatedly, his face the fulcrum point of my efforts. Again, bless him, poor thing. My laziness in not opening the zipper in the first place had been beat out. In he went and that was that. That night.

Since the four nights that have passed with him in the new bed, not one has passed without incident. One night he was out completely, thumping about his room in the pitch black; another his beloved sleep dolly had fallen out onto the floor. Curses! He was sleeping perfectly without any trouble at all before this changeover, why WHY!!!!??? I think to myself, why did I do this? If it ain't broke don't fix it and all that.... but I do know that whether I did it last week or six months from now the same things would occur, as part of the learning process of being in an open bed. So fine, I accept that. At least the baby is no trouble at all now, really - after 10:45 pm he doesn't need tending until morning. (Instead I do often need to listen to him party to himself for an hour, between 4 am and 5 am. At least I don't need to get out of bed). As a mum with three young kids I accept that somebody (or somebody x3), for some reason, will have me up skulking about in the dark between 10 pm and 7 am.

What really gets me though is when it isn't a child, but the blasted cat. On the rare occasion that no child disturbs me, the fates insist again that I must never get a whole night's sleep. Over the past few months we have had a rattling radiator problem, which numerous times in the night we were awoken by the cat using it to jump into the window - I nearly paid someone 100 GBP to have it fixed it was making us so crazy - but then I brilliantly stuffed a towel down the back and that seems to have done the trick. Hopefully once the heat goes on this doesn't burn the house down or cause some other associated disaster (!). The other favourite of Thierry the cat is to barf, on the white carpet of course. In the middle of the night. If not disgusting enough to have to clean up after this foul cat habit, his cat highness always ALWAYS does it at night. I astutely tear myself from sleep the moment I hear the indicative, quite distinct cat retch....there is always a preamble of awful cat retchy noises that if I am quick enough I can scoop him mid convulsion for safe receipt on a stone or wooden floor. What actually happens though is I end up slightly too late (retch preamble two or three! aack too late!) and I make the mess worse by creating a lengthwise spray trail en route to the hard floor, the hard floor ending up unscathed but the carpet and adjacent walls decorated quite artistically. Last night we were up at 4:30 am, armed with the Vanish carpet spray, once again. Oh but he is so cute and cuddly. Damn him.

The worst shock in the night was when there was an almighty *SMASH* - the sounds of cracking and tinkling that only broken glass makes, and although I am sure only lasted seconds the sound seemed too go on forever, and SO loud. We leapt out of bed and downstairs to find the giant hall mirror on the floor, mirrored glass just everywhere, everywhere. That was a couple of years ago and I swear I still find bits of glass from that scattered about in dark corners. The mirror has since been replaced by the couple of giant wooden lizards we brought back from honeymoon, a much more innocent hall feature!

I know I have at least three more years of broken nights. And my husband commented last night to me that I probably need some botox. Perhaps these points are related? I do look a little night-of-the-living-dead nowadays - so hey, if he's selling, I'm buying. In the meantime, if I do have an undisturbed night of sleep between 11 pm and 7 am, I will quickly report. But I wouldn't wait up for it if I were you.

Sunday, 18 September 2011


It seems I find myself under control again. And awake.

If you had followed my other blog 'Singlemarriedmum' you know it seemed to just stop abruptly February 24th; I was 8 months pregnant, working, with two toddlers, and alone. That can be paraphrased in one simple word that explains it all. Tired.

The last 6 months were survived, I believe, due to some kind of autopiloted semi-wakeful coma. I am not exactly sure of the details, but in that time I have had a new baby, stopped work, regained my husband, and rejuvenated two happy little boys. I have been on a short holiday twice, had grandparents visit thrice, and have seen my sister and the cousins a good two handfuls worth. I have a vague memory of even baking a pie. Things are looking up.

I feel like my new equilibrium has been found. And with my new one-size-larger cheap sale Gap jeans wedged snugly in between the two car seats in the back, we are ready to drive off to new horizons.

And suddenly, I don't feel so tired anymore.