I spend a lot of time on this blog talking about how amazing Motherhood is; the things I enjoy the most, the beautiful everyday moments and the tips and tricks that I am learning as I go. But today I thought it was time for a dose of a different take on reality. The other side of the coin. The brown grass on the other side. Here are my ten things that I really, really, took for granted before having a baby.
(Disclaimer: I obviously love Darcie to bits and wouldn’t change a thing...except these things. I’d like these back please)
Hot food and drink. Even though we’re past the stage of eating dinner in shifts whilst taking it in turns to hold the baby. I’m still constantly having to rush my food or eat with one hand and even if she’s asleep or entertained, it is deeply ingrained in me now to eat quickly before I lose my chance. My house has also become a graveyard for cups of tea and coffee that are abandoned throughout the day, where for a split second I think I may be able to get my caffeine fix but then have to dash off and pull Darcie out of the chimney or the washing machine and leave my hot little cup of joy behind.
Stairs. You don’t fully appreciate stairs until you’ve been waiting for a lift for what feels like half an hour and you see people ascending the stairs, care and pram free! The same goes for escalators too. Those beautiful inventions that I am forever destined to pass by in my search for a lift. Don’t even get me started on people that clog up lifts by using them for no. good. reason.
Sleep. I couldn’t write this list and not include sleep. Everyone tells you to make the most of sleep while you are pregnant, before it is stolen from you forever, and I’m pretty sure no one ever listens. I consider myself to have had a good night’s sleep if I had anything over 5 hours with less than two wake ups. This is a conversation that happens regularly in my life: ‘how did she sleep last night?’, ‘She woke up twice and we got up at 5.45’, ‘you poor thing!’ ‘No, that’s bloody brilliant, I feel re energised and full of life, look at me, I can take on the world!’ It’s funny how standards can drop so drastically, at university I couldn’t function on anything less that ten hours!
Free time. There is no free time once you have a baby. Every minute of the day is accounted for. Even if you sit down briefly during nap time, you can bet that you won’t be relaxing but you’ll be compiling to do lists in your head and then deciding you might as well just get on with it anyway. Even time away from your children is not your own, they are never far from your thoughts!
Shopping. Being a stay at home mum, I’m sure that some people have this idea that I could spend all my time browsing and mooching around the shops to my hearts desire. But those people do not have kids. Not one like mine anyway. Darcie HATES the pram, even before she could crawl she didn’t want to be strapped in or contained in any way. Going shopping always seems like a nice idea but inevitably ends with a tantrum from one of us!
Lazy days. If anyone knows how to convince a toddler that it’ll be fun to sit indoors and watch a movie all snuggled up on the sofa, please teach me your ways!!
Personal Space. Children, especially your own, have very little (make that no) awareness of personal space. Until they want some, of course. Whether you’ve got a baby trying to breastfeed twenty four seven or a toddler that thinks you’re their own personal climbing frame, every Mum on the planet knows exactly how ‘touched out’ feels.
Going to the toilet. Alone. Did you know you can go for a wee with a sleeping baby on your chest? If you’ve never had to find that out, I envy you. Sometimes when Dan is home I pretend to need the toilet just so I can go and sit in peace for a minute.
Basic hygiene. Toddler’s got a runny nose and you’re out of tissues? Your hand will do. Baby carried on pooing while you’re changing the nappy? That’s going all over yours truly. Haven’t had a chance to wash your hair all week? Dry shampoo is your new best friend. On a scale of baby wipe clean to squeaky clean, let’s just say I spend a lot of time opening the packet!
Just going out! Pre baby, Dan and I were the best at last minute, spontaneous plans. Whether that be a meal out or a surprise trip to Switzerland; if we wanted to go out and do something, we just did it. We’ve tried not to let having a baby stop us from being like this, but let’s face it, it’s inevitable. If you’ve just put the baby to bed, you can’t just decided that you fancy going out for a meal. Sometimes being a parent means weighing up how much you want to do something against the practicalities of actually doing it with a child in tow. Damn being so adult and responsible!
So, pregnant ladies, this is your warning. Make the most of these things because trust me, you’ll miss them when they’re gone. Go, have a wee in peace and drink your hot tea while enjoying your personal space and contemplating a spontaneous evening out with your friends.
And to all you Mummas; I’d love to know, what are some of the things that you used to take for granted?