How Life Changes When You Have A Baby

How life changes when you have a baby

When I had Elfie I was determined that I wouldn’t change as a person. I knew some things would be different – I wouldn’t be able to go out on a whim, would be a bit thicker round the middle for a few months, might lose a bit of sleep and there’d be a new little person around the place, but essentially I was determined that life as I knew it would remain the same. How different could things get, right?

AHAHAHAHAHAHHHAHAHAHA.

Let’s take stock, shall we?

The Body
Weird things happen to your body. I’ve carried two children which obviously has put a strain on various parts of me and it shows: I have a spare tyre that I’m currently working on (getting rid of it, not keeping it), my boobs will never be the same and my feet GREW when I was pregnant. I have a funny bulgey vain at the back of my right knee and I won’t go into details because I want some of you to be able to look me in the eye again but: PILES. No 25 year old thinks she’s going to have to worry about piles. Think again.

The Sleep
Unless you have a child or have perhaps been tortured you DO NOT know sleep deprivation. Sleep deprivation is not being able to think, converse, cook, walk, function. I have had days when I’ve reclined on my sofa and wept feeling so unable to do anything at all: it’s a terrible feeling and is surely the worst thing about motherhood. When you’re in the middle of it you can feel like you’re never getting out of it and you want to punch the well wishers with their pointless advice on how to make your baby sleep (how do they not realise you’ve already tried it ALL?). Also: never tell a new mum she looks tired. Never ever ever.

How life changes when you have a baby

The Nose
Something must happen to your sense of smell during birth because you suddenly become totally immune to the smell of poo. Your child can be sitting right next to you and for some reason you have to place your nose to their arse and take a big whiff to decide whether or not they require a nappy change. If you want to make doubly sure you can use your index finger to pull at the back of their trousers and nappy and do a visual check. Pure glamour.

Last night I had a spectacular fail on the shit-whiff front. I did the cursory nose-based check of Hux’s bum as I was filling up the bath: nothing. I sat him on my knee, whipped his clothes and nappy off and plonked him in the bath. With an almighty crap clamped between his bum cheeks. Have you ever seen a bath with a full-length skidmark? My tub spent the day simmering under an inch of bleach but to be frank, I don’t think I’m ever going to be able to relax with bath oils and a couple of candles in there ever again. Thanks for nothing, sense of smell.

The Gross Things
Situations that would otherwise turn your stomach really don’t phase you anymore. I’m talking vomit (OH, the vomit…), poo, snot. Just today I have: dealt with a middle of the night nappy leak, picked a hardened bogey out of my son’s hair, retrieved a half-masticated piece of cucumber off the floor, held a toddler’s hand on the toilet and wiped two bums. I basically wash my hands a lot.

The Emotions
As soon as I had Elfie I developed ALL the emotions. And they never left. I will cry at the drop of a hat these days and have particular things that make me weep more than others. The sickly sweet Dinosaur Train on Nick Jr “I’ll always been your Mom”. WEEP. Any and all charity TV adverts (even the donkey ones). Love stories (The Undateables kills me). Don’t even think about Comic Relief/Children In Need. I even have issues with the X Factor final.

What have I missed?

Things That Won’t Calm My Crying Baby

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Hux cried for two long, loud hours last night. It was reminiscent of the colic days, days so bleak I’ve managed to block them out of my memory. That awful crying babies do when they’re feeling miserable and sad but you can’t do anything to make them feel better and it breaks your heart.

It was bad enough when he was a tiny newborn baby and would scream for hours on end, but now he’s that little bit older and has such personality he looks at you with these expressive eyes. They say “mummy, I don’t feel good, please help me”, and you’re trying and trying but you can’t. I talk to him and sing to him to make him feel better (not surprised, Elfie usually says. “Mummy, please stop singing. It no good”) but he just whimpers with tears streaming, but on the upside no matter how upset he is he still likes to clap (his favourite trick) through his sobs.

We tried everything in an attempt to make him happy:

1. Rocking side to side
2. Rocking up and down
3. Singing
4. Milk
5. Water
6. Blankets
7. Teething powder
8. Paracetamol
9. Lights
10. Candlelight
11. Silence
12. Shhhing
13. TV on in the background
14. Kisses
15. Tickles
16. Sitting in his room
17. Being on his own
18. A foot rub
19. A back rub

Finally, the one thing that finally made him smile off to sleep at a late late 4am?

His Daddy sucking on his fingers.

My son, the deviant.

Hux At 9 Months Or Thereabouts

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Huxley Harold. Our Bubby. When I’m with you my nose is permanently plastered to your neck, your ear, your hair. Because the smell of your baby creases is so delicious I wish I could bottle it and wear it every day, because I know before too long you’ll grow up and start smelling of PE lessons, cheesy feet and Lynx.

One of the best things I like to do with you is go places, anywhere, the hardware shop the co-op, the post office. You utterly charm everyone you see, including the gruff butchers today who made you giggle then drily noted that the lamb we were going to have for dinner was 9 months old- the same age of you. You are happy to smile at anyone who affords you a couple of words and this seems to be something the elderly ladies of the village like a lot. It makes my heart swell.

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I want to keep you at this age forever, this age when you light up like a Christmas tree for your mummy as she’s your best pal, your number one. I like being your number one. Yet we’ve just begun to see some glimpses of your personality and the boy you’re about to come… I can’t wait for that. You’re going to be a knockout, that’s for sure.

You’re such a good looking baby. You have a definite boyish look about you and of course I’m biased but I think you could have been ordered straight out of a catalogue from ‘Pretty babies r us’. Everyone says you look like your daddy, though he’s jealous as you have more hair (that I can’t get to lie flat, no matter how many times I wash it).

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You are such a fan of your big sister and I hope it stays this way for a very long time. I was in the kitchen yesterday and all I could here from the lounge was the sound of Elfie attempting to tickle you whilst you giggled gleefully at her. It’s beautiful to see you together and you really are peas in a pod with the same lovely big blue eyes.

You’re not crawling yet, or even sitting up. But I’m not worried, you roll like nothing I’ve ever seen before. Elfie wasn’t so interested in being mobile either, but now she follows me around saying “why you do that, mummy? When daddy come home from work? Drawing now mummy? Me feed bubby, now, yes?”. The way that you’re able to repeat Mama, Dada and Gaga back to me at the tender age of 9 months makes me think you’ll be a genius just like her.

 

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Bubby, you are the most amazing baby. Now get over here so I can smell you some more.