Current stage of parenthood: The I need eyes in my arse stage.

Today began as a picture postcard of parenting. Hubs got the boy and settled him into our bed with his morning milk, Captain joined us wedging himself between me and the bald kitten, then snuggling up to Will whilst the boy gently stroked him. Beautiful, I felt all warm and fuzzy.

The boy got a little fidgety so hubs let him off the bed. We lay there, listening to the patter of his feet, his exclamations of ‘Marm’ at the cat. Then another sound, it was the scraping of bristles against the toilet brush holder. I don’t think hubs and I would have got out of bed quicker if it was on fire. The duvet seemed to be momentarily suspended in mid-air as we desperately scampered out of bed. After relieving the small boy of the loo brush we gave him his toothbrush, he loves brushing his teeth and it’s a most excellent distraction from his second favourite thing (brandishing the bog bush about). Whilst I put his toothbrush back in the pot he did his third favourite thing, unravelling the toilet roll. The speed at which he can reduce an entire roll of paper to a ribony pile on the floor is almost impressive if it wasn’t so frustrating. Today, as I tried to roll it back up he grabbed a big mound and started ‘blow his nose’ on it. As he doesn’t really know what this entails but he’s heard his Grandad do it lots of times he just bends over and blows raspberries with his face buried in the tissue.

Feeling breakfast would be an appropriate intervention to the carnage already reaped upstairs I took the little scamp into the kitchen.

‘Do you want banana pancakes?’

‘YEAH!’

I go to the fruit bowl to get a banana. I turn around to see the boy has pulled some utensils out of the kitchen drawer and is beating the floor with then. Wrestle utensils off the boy put back into the drawer and find he’s used the split second that took to make a good start on taking all the plates out the cupboard.

He has this very second tried to ‘blow his nose’ on my dressing gown.

On Thursday afternoon after ‘helping’ me to change the sheets, I heard a familiar sound and found him in the bathroom plunging the loo brush into the toilet, splashing water EVERYWHERE with a look of sheer delight on his face. Whilst I tried to clean up he emptied an entire pack of cotton buds (Q-tips) on the floor.

I know what you’re thinking, put things out of reach, close the bathroom door! But he doesn’t seem to have an out of reach. I suspect he has secret extendable arms and legs and can make himself at least six foot tall! As for closing the door he can open them now, it serves only to slow him down a bit.

So it sees that for the time being, vigilance is the key. Sitting and relaxing are not an option whilst he’s awake. And whilst not all the things he does pose a danger or risk of damage to property (he’s currently walking round hugging an empty milk carton) you can guarantee if you fall asleep on the sofa he’ll defrost the freezer whilst eating cat biscuits.

If you need me, I’ll be chasing after a toddler.

In other news:

I *think* one of the cats might have peed somewhere but I can’t find where.

Will is still calling both cats ‘Marm’.

I should be leaving the house in 20 minutes but I’m still in my pyjamas.

 

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The first day of the first month of the new year. Time to get honest.

Call me cynical but I purposely refrained from any sort of ‘Have a happy new year’ post on Facebook this year. My refraining from any sort of post on Facebook is rare but I couldn’t face pretending to be optimistic about how fantastic this new year will be. That’s not so say I think it will be awful, but every year I get lured into the looking back over the year and planning on making the next one brilliant. It’s almost as if I’m setting myself up to feel like I’ve failed somehow when once again I don’t lose that excess weight, or stick to an exercise plan or remember to put money aside to pay my car tax…

When Big Ben chimed midnight, Will was tucked up in bed, I  had a glass of wine in my hand, shared a kiss with hubs and felt content.

Content.

That has not been an easy feeling for me recently. I’ve not discussed the reason for my extended absence from writing because quite simply, I felt ashamed. Last year (I can say that now) my anxiety returned. Slowly at first, the odd fleeting feeling that something terrible was about to happen. An occasional night of broken sleep. I ignored it. Pushed it back, telling myself ‘I’ve dealt with this, I’m just being paranoid.’ But it got worse. If you’re curious as to what it’s like, I can only offer you my experience of it. Imagine believing that every day when you go into work, you’re going to get fired. How that would make you feel and behave. I am convinced that every day I am at work, my boss is going to pop into my office, tell me I’m terrible at my job and ask me to leave. I think I am terrible at my job, and I’ve told myself I’m terrible at my job so many times that often, I am actually terrible at my job. I’ve hidden under my desk several times, called my husband ‘just talk to me please babe’, he knows the drill, talk about anything and keep talking, until I say ‘Thank you I’m okay now’, then creep out from under my desk hoping no one is walking past, but ready with an excuse of ‘Dropped my sodding pen, it rolled under the desk, what am I like ay?’ Deception seems to be a big part of it.

I am nervous around family, because I feel they have meetings to discuss what an awful mother I am. How my husband would be so much better off without me and how they would do a much better job at raising my son. I’ve wanted to leave my house but found the prospect of getting myself and the boy in a fit state to go out so utterly daunting that I’ve sat and cried. And when my little boy stops in his tracks and gives me a worried look, furrowing his tiny brow unsure of what  to do next, I stop the tears and smile. Make my voice as jolly as I can and try to distract him with a game or a book. He knows my joviality is a lie, and I wonder if that’s why he’s changed towards me. I’ve pushed him away with my lies.

Now I have seen a doctor, I am seeking the appropriate help. I’ve overcome this once before and I will do it again. My social media accounts will still portray the version of me I want everyone to see and I will not mention this again after this post. But if you’re struggling;

Get help.

You’re not weak. We all know someone who doesn’t believe anxiety is a thing, who will air quote ‘anxiety’ when they say and make you shift uncomfortably, but not correct them because god forbid anyone discover you’re having mental health issues.

Fuck ’em. Do right by you, fragile, imperfect, wonderful you.

Will 2018 be ‘my year’? Probably not, due in no small part to the fact that I have no clue what has to happen to make it ‘my year’.  On the plus side, with a estimated world population of 7.6 billion* people, it’s bound to ‘the year’ for someone.

In other news:

Hubs and I thought a nice family walk would be a lovely new year activity. Turns out William did not share this opinion and every time he was put down to walk he wailed and refused to move an inch (unless it involved throwing himself on the floor).

Captain has decided his new favourite place to sleep is my pillow. Even if I’m using it. Unperturbed he just curls up on my face.

At 31 years and 11 months and two weeks old, (and after one large glass of wine and three cocktails)  I finally got my nosed pierced.

 

*Thanks Google!

 

Feeling redundant.

The boy is becoming more of a ‘character’ every day. He’s beginning to really communicate what he does and doesn’t want.

Which would be great if 9 times out of 10 it’s me and hubs that he doesn’t want. 

It’s a wonderful feeling when you pick your child up and they scream and squirm because they don’t want you. He’ll happily snog the cat, but heaven forbid mummy and daddy get a kiss. 

Daddy is also firm favourite this week, if he goes upstairs Wills will stand at the baby gate wailing, then smack at me if I try and comfort him. This smarts, I ruined my vagina and got a daddy’s boy. ‘Triffic. 

Luckily the Captain is extremely needy.

In other news:

The path leading from our front door to our drive has turned into ‘massive spiderweb land’, i just love starting the day sticky.

Marms seems to have rememberd that she is, in actual fact, our cat and  is home a lot more. There are now daily cat squabbles. If a cat squabble causes me or hubs to shout, Wills will start to cry. Hysterically. 

No the boy is picking up language at an alarming rate I really must stop swearing. (But that’s hard when your cats are arseholes.)

It takes a village to raise a child.

Now I’m not sure if the saying is ‘a’ village or ‘the’ village but what I do know is I don’t agree. 

You see support is a wonderful thing, no question. Offers to babysit/look after the little one are great. Advice, when it’s asked for delivered in a non-judgemental way in truely invaluable, but the village…. no thank you. 

You see raising a baby is hard enough but it’s even harder when everyone has slightly different ideas on the right way to do things. It’s even harder when people take you ignoring their advice and doing your own thing personally. What do you do if that happens? Let ’em be upset, don’t try and justify how you’re choosing to raise your child or you’ll spend the next 18 years apologising!

It’s also worth bearing in mind that all of these villagers were once exactly where you are now, no matter how authoritative their advice no-one is born knowing exactly what to do with a tiny human in all situations. 

In other news:

The boy has a cold. So. Much. Snot.

The cats appear to have called a truce.

The winter wardrobe is out the loft.

Public enemy number 1.

For some reason, I can do nothing right today. My son has spent the morning wailing. The causes have been various, his daddy went to work, I stopped him drinking my tea, I took the house phone off him, I had a shower, I took my foundation out of his mouth, I picked him up, I put him down… all sorts of unreasonable things a mother does! 

He’s currently stood on the sofa smacking the wall and I’m hovering so I can catch him if he falls but I’m not sure I could take another meltdown from him so I’m pretty much leaving him to it. 

Now would be a good time to point out that it’s only 9.50 in the morning. When I took my make up off him, he threw himself on the floor and beat the carpet with his fists. I haven’t eaten yet, I think taking him out would be a good idea but it’s a wet and miserable day, I’m not sure where we would go. He has absolutely no interest in his own toys today, finding amusement in anything/everything that is highly unsuitable/dangerous. 

I can’t decide if he’s tired (all hell broke loose when I put him into bed) if he’s teething or if he’s just decided to be monumental bum hole today. 

Either way, I shall continue my day, as public enemy number one. 

Please send ear plugs. 

In other news:

Yesterday, Wills thought it acceptable to smack Captain with that sodding loo brush!

Winter is here apparently, slightly peeved we didn’t have a summer in between…

My summer house has been erected (tee hee) I just need a couple of days sans rain so I can paint it (it’s never going to get painted).

Sorting myself out.

It’s safe to say, from my previous post that I was a having a wobble of monumental proportions. I have been struggling recently with work pressures, trying to be a good mum, trying to keep my house clean and trying to not hate my body. And I’ve realised that because of being so wrapped up in thinking about how I’m failing, I’ve missed a lot of good things. 

When I feel down, I bring everything else down too. I can’t help it, the world suddenly becomes tinged with grey. I couldn’t handle William’s behaviour even though I was probably the cause of it. Babies are perceptive. It’s probably why he was so clingy. 

Yesterday I had a glorious afternoon with my son. I worked in the morning and managed to hand over a project to my boss. This thing has been the bain of my life for a few weeks so it feels great not to have to think about it for a bit! When I picked him up from my mum’s he was engrossed in watching a pigeon in the garden. He pointed with his chubby little arm and was mumbling ‘kitty’ (everything is either kitty or mummy at the moment). I could see prints all over the window from where he’d been studying this weird creature in NannyGran’s garden.  We got home and we played. We danced,  he ‘helped’ with the washing by taking clothes off the airer and putting them back into the machine. He played with two empty milk cartons he’d pulled out of the recycling box. You should have seen the sheer delight on his face! He cuddled me, he squeezed the cat (we’re still working on cat handling). We had fun. He laughed a lot. I don’t think I can put into words what the sound of his laughter means to me, I have special sounds, ones that make me feel warm inside, Wills laugh, Hubs saying my name and the cats with their surprisingly loud snoring. 

I couldn’t help but think how many times do I get so wrapped up in how I’m feeling that I miss what’s going on around me? 

We’ve had a busy morning today, so busy Will clambered onto my lap and fell asleep. It feels like such a long time since he’s done that. In the early days that’s what we did, he slept, I held him. That doesn’t happen anymore, instead I have a little boy who sprinkles cat biscuits all over the house, plays with the recycling, takes his socks off and shoves them under my nose, pulls the sodding carpet up and permanently changes the TV settings by playing with the remote. And it’s bloody brilliant! 

So, my wee man, my dearest darling boy: you be you. In all your cat-biscuit-eating, weeing- all-over -your monkey, following -mummy-around-crying glory! Because no matter how tired/sad/inadequate mummy might feel sometimes you really can make it all go away xXx

In other news: 

William heard the cat flap go and said ‘KITTY’. I may have mentioned this before, but super proud!

William can say ‘Mummy’ this would be more flattering if he didn’t insist on calling EVERYTHING mummy. 

It’s that wonderful time of year when Marms starts going baldy again. Just in time for winter…

Not all fun and games.

One of more bizarre questions I was asked as a very new parent was ‘Do you enjoy being a mum?’ A standard reply was something along the lines of I hadn’t decided yet owing to the fact I hadn’t had him for very long.

If I had been asked that question today the answer would have been a resounding NO. You see today Wills has acted in a way he has NEVER acted before. It involved screaming inconsolably every time I wasn’t in his eye line, or I was in his eye line but I wasn’t holding him. As a human being with functioning ears, I don’t enjoy the sound of a baby crying. I also like to wee without a child on my lap. I like to walk about freely without a child clinging to my legs. I like to apply make-up without a child on my lap. Today was a day that pretty much revolved round stuff I don’t like.

It was a poor start, he woke up crying. I retrieved him and nipped to the loo, he followed me wailing like an air-raid siren. A short while later he pooed. Put his hands in the poo, around about the same time he was kicking hell out of my boobs, saw a big lump on poo on his finger and attempted to put finger in his mouth.

Cue the machine gun no: NONONONONONONONONONONONONONONONONONONO,

I grabbed the arm with the offending poo finger, he began to cry after all what sort of bitch stops him eating his own crap? Had to get the assistance of my heavily pregnant sister, to keep offending poo finger out of his mouth whilst I attempted to remove all the poo caked round his bum.

He remained clingy. Extremely clingy. And the crying. Good grief. Before I had a baby I vowed that I’d never let my child be sad. That as soon as I saw their lip quiver, I would hold them, cuddle them, reassure them by just being there.

A prime example of some of the fucking moronic ideas I had about parenting before I became one. I had cuddled him, I had tried being soothing but I’m tired. I want to be left alone, I want him to stop standing on my bloody feet. I want a cup of tea in peace. Today that was not on his agenda.

We visited my cousin ( ? Her Grandma is my great-Aunt) who had baked us some truly delicious cakes for afternoon tea. This was lovely but a problem when a mother at the very end of her tether, a mummy to a four month old and a heavily pregnant woman with a lively two year old get together, is that most of the time we’re so exhausted/hormonal/sleep deprived we don’t really have a fucking clue what we’re talking about. I think we had about 17 half conversations on the go. So we’ve had a catch up but probably couldn’t tell you anything we’ve ‘caught up’ on. Apparently we shouldn’t expect that to improve any time soon.

My cousin(?) Katy has a dog. I can’t remember the breed (Yorkshire terrier?) but it’s tiny. Wills likes it. Except today. When he screamed. I’d pick him up. He’d point at the dog chatter to it, wiggle to get down. Follow dog. Dog would then see her new friend, get excited, jumping and licking would ensue, son would cry blue bloody murder again. Having said that, he was fairly quiet at Katy’s house he was busy eating his food off the floor. I tried a feeble intervention but my fallopian tubes were busy tying themselves in knots and quite frankly I didn’t want to stop them.

Afternoon tea over we faced the task of trying to get a two and one year old in the car. The two year old wanted to sit in the front (the driver’s seat), she is also terribly independent and we’d learnt, (to our cost) that she likes to ‘do the big step’ into the car by herself. SHE MOST DEFINATLY DOES NOT WANT LIFTING INTO THE CAR. However, actually doing the big step into the car, takes a long time. A very long time.

After dropping off my sister and my niece and enjoying some less-clingy William, I headed home. Got home to find hubs mowing the lawn. Wills continued to be clingy.

To cut a long story short I *might* have lost my temper (I did) whilst my poor mother-in-law was on FaceTime, trying to talk to her balling grandson, snapped at hubs (who was actually trying to help but I’d gone ‘rage blind’ and considered all the enemy) and stormed off into the house. (Slamming the door behind me).

Once in the house I spoke to my little boy in a manner that suggested I was absolutely fine and I had not marched off in a temper (OSCAR worthy performance, BTW) and popped him in the bath. Of course he cried when I put him down to turn the taps on, then ran off with his shampoo and his dad’s shower gel.

We made the sounds for his letters whilst he was in the bath. He concentrates so hard on the foam letter stuck to the side of the bath, I sound it out, he turns, grins at me and occasionally he will try to make the sound I’m making (most successful is the ‘zzz’ sound) (kudos for me for refraining from ‘P P P Pissed off’ and suchlike). I calmed down a lot until the cats started YET ANOTHER fight. Not quite sure why I’m paying an arm and a leg for a Feliway plug in, they’re still being wankers.

Anyway, the boy is in bed, his trusty monkey tucked under his arm. Hubs has poured me a wine and is cooking in the kitchen (I suspect partly to keep away from his moody and irrational wife). The ball of fury in my stomach is slowly dissipating, and I’m hoping to wake up a more balanced and reasonable individual. (And convince the MIL her son hasn’t married a psycho…)

In other news:

The washing machine is broken.

The cats have left two dead birds in the house and two on that lawn. (Fuckers)

I have a very exciting unicorn pad for work.