Lilian is twelve weeks old today. I can't quite believe it has been that long. Maybe I'm still high on morphine and dreaming and really I've only just had her. My complete exhaustion and need for sleep tells me maybe. Weirder things have happened when I've been deprived of sleep. Her baby snore and the state of the house tells me not (I need a cleaner).
I want to push pause. I don't like how quickly time is going.
It's just as well I cherish every moment with her. The housework can wait.
Unreasonable behaviour (snoring ALL night, not cleaning the bath properly)
Neglect (leaving me to deal with a teething baby, spending more time on ipad)
Adultery (with Apple)
The settlement? Monthly bag allowance.
When your child is sick for the first time, the guilt you feel is unbelievable. It isn't my fault, I know, but somehow I feel responsible. Is she sick because I didn't tell someone to wash their hands before they picked her up? Maybe. It could be a number of reasons. She may have rubbed her eyes with germy hands, in which case it's my responsibility to keep her hands clean. A mothers job is never done...
She is handling it well though, much better than me. I'm the one nearly in tears when I have to put her eye drops in.
God help me when she gets her first cold.
I don't want her to grow up so I've decided that she won't. Instead she shall live at home forever, sleep next to me (in her own bed but in my room), not have a boyfriend or a grown up job, and drink everything from a bottle (although prior to my pregnancy I'd swig alcohol from the bottle - classy, I know. Also, I had my bottle until I was five which means my Mum didn't want me to grow up either).
Let's see how long I can lead her to believe this is normal and I'm not, in fact, a complete nut job...
After three glasses of champagne and six hours of broken sleep, I found myself hanging.
Would it be bad if I said I'd missed it? That dull ache and fuzzy head? I'm guessing yes.
No matter how much I've missed it, I shan't be doing it again in a hurry. Because 3 glasses of champagne have resulted in a 2 day hangover.
What I do remember is the three days that followed. Quite possibly the worst three days of my life. After a horrendous labour which resulted in a c-section that was equally horrendous, I spent the next three days in a lot of pain looking after a screaming baby I couldn't shut up. I was expected to get out of bed to make her a bottle when I could hardly walk. I didn't have a clue what I was doing. Was I winding her properly? Holding her the right way? It didn't come naturally like they said it would, I was in too much pain to concentrate and she wouldn't settle. I didn't like her much, I wasn't supposed to feel like this was I? The night before I was due home I asked to be discharged. That request was met with a laugh and 'go and get some sleep'. I asked husband to come and get me but he said the same. No one understood just how much pain I was in and I hadn't slept for a week. I was exhausted. I was suicidal.
People ask me why I don't want another baby. That's your answer right there. After such a horrendous experience I really don't want to put myself through that again. You may think feeling suicidal is a tad extreme but that evening I just wished I'd died in theatre.
Nobody prepares you for the trauma of giving birth, either naturally or by section. People forget that having a Caesarean is major surgery, they expect you to be up and about enjoying motherhood. Some have the easiest of labours and that's lucky for them. I wasn't so lucky and I know a few others that have experienced worse.
I'd like to think the more fun times I have with Lil, the less I'll remember about the birth. That's something I'm trying to forget in a hurry.
I had a rant to the husband about how I want to go back to work. 'She can go to daycare, I'm tired of her strops'. I'm exhausted and feel like I'm not even a person anymore, just a mummy. A robotic mummy.
I love spending every day with her (ok, maybe that's a lie because when she's being stroppy I feel like leaving her on someone's doorstep) and want to be the one that witnesses all her 'firsts'. But I need to be me again, I'd eventually like to go back to work and go out and get drunk and be silly. All this being a responsible mother is draining, if I don't do something silly soon I'll go mad.
If I hadnt left my previous job I'd be going back in three months anyway. So why do I feel guilty? Is it normal to feel like this?
I don't remember seeing my Mum much when I was little, she went back to work and my Nan looked after me most of the time when I wasn't in daycare. I'm very close to my Nan and I don't think this would be the case if I wasn't with her for a huge part of my childhood.
Did my Mum feel guilty leaving me? I haven't asked but she didn't have much choice. Her and my Dad divorced when I was a baby so she had to go to work to support us. I'm still close to my Mum but I'm beginning to wonder if we would have had a better relationship in the past if she had been a stay at home Mum or at least a part time one?
She did an amazing job bringing me up and gave me everything but the sacrifice was she had to go to work so we spent less time together.
I want the closeness with Lilian that I have with my Nan but I want to go back to work. It is very rare that you see a part time version of what I did and full time isn't an option right now. So what's the answer? Be a full time Mum until she goes to school and go insane? Bite the bullet, go back full time and come home in time to put her to bed? Watch her grow into a little madam or have someone else see it?
I don't know what the answer is right now. I shall just continue to eat guilt for breakfast.
You start talking a funny baby language in a stupid voice. You discover a whole bunch of words you never knew existed, like 'windypops' and 'fluffytoes'. It's enough to want to punch yourself in the head.
So it was no surprise today when I pulled a monkey out from Lilian's box of teddys and immediately named him 'Mr Monkeybum'.
I'm turning into one of those Mums.
I need a drink.
Here is Lilian and Mr Monkeybum.
There are easier times of course. When they're sleeping. Or when they smile or laugh. But it certainly doesn't get easier in general.
Today I looked at her and thought 'you're ruining my life'. She isn't, of course, she is the most wonderful little thing and I love her dearly but for about two minutes I felt she was. I wanted to have a large drink. A large alcoholic drink. I didn't have one, instead I sang 'The Grand Old Duke Of York' sixteen times and then she shut up.
Now I've been through some tough times in the past, but this has to be one of the toughest. A teething baby is not fun. Not fun at all.
A teething baby is definitely an advert for safe sex, so I may as well take this opportunity to make some dollar.
If anyone wants to rent the child to promote safe sex, please contact me for more details and fees.
Following on from yesterday's post about packing for our holiday, I thought you would be interested to know what I have packed for our day trip (I didn't make a list).
4 outfit changes
Microwave bottle steriliser
Ready made milk in cartons
2 packs of wet wipes
Pram and raincover
And a partridge in a pear tree.
I am dreading packing for our holiday.
I want to protect her forever but nothing lasts forever (except the fact that she's grounded for the rest of her life).
Without experiencing these things I guess she won't grow as a person. All I ask is that life is kind to her.
See, I can't be a sentimental old sap sometimes.
She has screamed and screamed and screamed since 3pm. She has had a few breaks. But mainly she has screamed.
It's those fucking teeth. She won't drink her milk and she won't go to sleep yet she's hungry and tired. Those little fuckers have got a lot to answer for when they appear.
I have enough to deal with right now without the hassle of those viscous little monsters causing her pain.
God give me strength. They don't prepare you for this in the book. Bastards.
*this is a joke. I'm not selling her (unless the price is right).
Baby outfits especially.
There is a lot of rubbish out there for babies to wear, a lot of pink. Now I'm all for dressing babies to look like babies and not mini adults as I think these days children are far more grown up before their time but today I just could not resist a few bits that I would wear myself (if they did my size).
I dress Lil like a baby most of the time (in babygros and romper thingys and the like) but during the summer months it isn't so easy. Not when it's warm outside. For summer she has shorts and playsuits and dresses. No pink. No headbands. No handbags (I saw a tiny baby with it's own little straw handbag today...) and NO skinny jeans.
Here is the start of her summer wardrobe...
A fashionista in the making?
Today I am very sad. Sad comes in the form of a huge cheese roll and a giant cake.
The other day I was glum. Glum, that day, was triple chocolate cheesecake.
Now these emotions are doing nothing for my quest to get back in to my pre-pregnancy jeans. Nothing for my cellulite either. What's a slice of cheesecake you ask? Nothing when it's a slice. When it's half a cheesecake...
Why do I have to eat my emotions? Where has my willpower gone? Why do I have seven chins and not one?
The answer is below....
Fast forward a year and wearing heels is saved for special, size 8 is a distant memory and a hangover isn't an option.
In short: being a Mum is pretty damn hard. I miss my old self.
Although irresponsible, I quite enjoyed getting drunk and doing stupid things. It gave me funny stories to tell and I certainly laugh looking back. I feel like I'm just 'a mummy' and not Charlotte anymore.
To add insult to injury I've decided to give up Alcohol for good. A baby and a hangover do not go well together. Being drunk and falling into a deep sleep just spells trouble and I'm not ready to lend Lilian out for the night yet. Plus alcohol equals empty calories and right now I'm trying to cut those out of my life (I want to get back into those size 8 skinnies). Sigh....
I guess I need to learn to balance motherhood and being me again. Without alcohol.
Except there's a bloody huge bottle of vodka in the cupboard...
Today I have had one of the most difficult days. She doesn't want a cuddle, she doesn't want her bottle, she doesn't want to sleep. Or go out in the car or go to Bluewater. She doesn't want to sit in her new chair or lay on her mat. She just wants to be a pain in the arse.
But as soon as Daddy walks through the door she shuts up.
For two minutes...
It can takes months for the teeth to come through which is just marvellous because I'm enjoying the constant screaming and tantrums.
I guess I've got years of screaming and tantrums to come yet.
Lots of people without babies have been asking me if all the shit I went through when I was pregnant was worth it. It was so worth it, I'd do it all again a hundred times over.
Ok maybe that's a lie. But having Lilian has made me forget how traumatic the whole experience was. I'm besotted. I want more. Maybe not naturally, I'll adopt. My body was definitely not made for producing babies but at least I've had a go.
I know for a fact though that I was made to be a mummy.