Mum Problems Part 3…

…continued…

Mum Problem #9

They grow up too fast…

Seriously; they never stop.

This week has been a week of milestones: Toby started nursery, Jonas has been teething, & Noah (for the first time ever) has had his hair cut short. (Excuse me while I go sob into a pillow…waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah…OK, done.)

kids grow up

It’s not like I didn’t know children grew up, got older, developed & changed – I’m not a complete idiot – but I just didn’t realise it happened so damn fast! All those people – grandmas, parents, aunties, perfect strangers – who tell you to cherish each moment, that it passes by in the blink if an eye – I used to roll my eyes at them. But now I’m ONE OF THEM! Even Jonas, with his chubby red cheeks & expanding waistline, is defying old me, taunting old me, telling old me what a fool she was . Why didn’t I believe them? Why did I scoff at them? Where has the time GONE??

I never thought about schools when we were deciding to have children. I admit it – I never even thought about them getting older! You think “let’s have a baby” but you seem to block out the realisation (or at least put it off for a long while) that these babies don’t stay babies forever! They get teeth, they learn to walk, turn on the TV & wipe their own bums (can’t say I’m not looking forward to that one though…) Children are geniuses – absolute geniuses! They learn to recognise your boundaries & push, they figure out who the softest parent is & exploit that knowledge, they learn how to lie & laugh & make you giggle when they’ve done something wrong (GENIUS!) They are funny & passionate & unstoppable, testosterone fuelled creations who need every bit of our patience & grace & wisdom & tact. & love. I love my children. I love them so much I physically don’t know what to do with myself sometimes (I won’t say the cliché “it hurts” because I’m not so sure that’s an accurate description).

Noah is due to start school this year.

Home Education is a definite option for us & something we’re seriously considering. I’m self-employed, I work from home, the idea of sending them to school fills me with dread…

I want our boys to pursue things that truly make them passionate & excited. I want them to learn at their own speed. I want them to come out of their educational experience feeling empowered & believe they can do anything. I want them to WANT to learn. I want their own curiosity to fuel their learning. I want them to finish the things they start in their own time. I want them to learn something because they are genuinely interested in learning about it or out of necessity, not because they have to fit into a category. I want them to play out & read by the river & dance in the garden & learn about the sea by going to the seaside & travel to a farm to study animals & do nature drawings & collages & learn to follow their own intuition. I want them to act out of freedom – I want them to explore this world – their world – in a safe environment, to let them make choices & make mistakes & learn from them, learn how to make the right choices & not have them penalised for sometimes making the wrong ones. I want them to learn in an environment of love & acceptance & tolerance & discipline. I want them to learn how to control themselves.

The things Noah knows now are mostly down to what he’s learnt at home. This isn’t because we wanted to force information on him, but because he’s asked about things & let his curiosity guide him. I’m sure all children are the same! He wanted to know how the rain cycle worked, what makes things fall down, how motors run, how to count to 100 – & he’s learnt & remembered most of these things because of his natural curiosity. He can do addition & has started to wonder & learn about subtraction. He loves playing eye spy & using phonics. He wants to build things out of blocks & loves what happens when they fall down. He wants to help me cook & he wants to wrestle & know how the human body works. He loves to sing – & is nearly always pitch perfect – & learns words to the songs he likes by listening to them. This is all him – all that he wants to know!

Even so, thoughts keep running through my head that scare me into thinking I’m not capable of teaching them. What’s funny is that I always had in the back of my mind that I could perhaps be a teacher one day, so what  makes me incapable of teaching my own children?

I saw a quote the other day that read “Do what you won’t regret” & since then I’ve been asking myself, what won’t I regret? Will I regret trying Home Education or giving it a go? Or will I regret sending him to school & not trying? The funny thing is, you have to opt in to school, not out, meaning the default for a child is Home Education. I’ve been pondering on that a lot over the last few days…

I can’t believe I’m even writing this right now. It only seems like it was yesterday that we were deciding to have a baby & now we’re choosing schooling options…I look at Toby, school bag in hand, & my heart aches. I can already see them headed off to university. Even my sweetie Jonas. I keep reminding myself, every day, not to take anything for granted, not to get cross so quickly, not to push them to be big boys just yet – they’ve got a heck of a lot of time to be adults. For now, I just want to let them be kids & I want to be there to experience them – every step of the way…

photo (18)

photo (19)

photo (22)

photo (21)

They grow up too fast…

Now a song to make you all weep into your evening supper…

…to be continued…

Mum Problems Part 2…

Continued…

Mum Problem #5

Eating.

baby food

Now this covers a whole range of topics, from putting on weight because their treats just look (& inevitably taste) so damn delicious, to never being able to eat a proper meal as all you have time to do is snack, to your snacks never being healthy ones because all you crave is a sugar high to get you through the rest of the day, to picking at their leftovers because you’ve spent the day not eating properly & now you’re STARVING, to learning how to eat like a monkey with your toes when you’re breastfeeding & I have no free hands (not really…), to getting to your dinner at goodness knows what time & realising you’re not hungry anymore. *sigh* I miss food…

Mum Problem #6

Television.

tv kids

You’re TV time is restricted until after their bedtime because, despite having paid for the TV, having set up the TV, & bought everything they watch on the TV, they consider it their property. Even the old “let’s take it in turns to watch something” still somehow forgets to include you.

Mum Problem #7

Everything is a mission.

You can never just go out. You have to have a plan. All parties must stick to the plan. If one person veers away from the plan, you must forfeit the plan & formulate a new plan. Formulating a new plan can take a long time.

You must prepare a bag – sometimes two – of all the things you will need, may need & think you need for the day. You will inevitably forget something important, e.g. your mind.

Mum Problem #8

Meals are a major pain in the badoingedie.

choice foods

If you have one child, they won’t like what you’re giving them. If you have two children, one will like what you’ve made, the other will think it’s Satan’s poop. They will throw it, refuse to eat it, tell you they hate it (even though they ate it last week & declared it was the “bestest ever”). You will beg. You will plead. You will hope & pray. You will threaten them with time out. You will put them in time out. You will give them a choice. They will choose the wrong choice. You will end up eating their dinner (see Mum Problem #5 for details…)

To be continued…

Mum Problems…

I’ve decided to do a list of mummy problems (as in parental mummy, not walking, groaning corpse). These will be listed 1 to however many I can think of, but aren’t done in order of importance. Sometimes there’ll be more than one in a post, sometimes just one lonesome giant rant of a problem – enjoy! And please, feel free to add!

Mum Problem #1

When you’re baby sucks their thumb so loudly you have to wear earplugs in order to sleep.

jonas thumb

Now this only really applies if your baby/child shares a room with you. And it’s only really doable if you have someone, AKA your spouse, to nudge you if said baby (or any other child you have) starts screaming the house down in the middle of the night.

I hate doing it, but from time to time, I have to wear ear plugs. I’ve tried a pillow over the head (my head, that is) & stuffing the duvet against my ears. I’ve tried listening to music with my earpods, but I can still here the continuous sucking noise. I’m a very light & sensitive sleeper. I hate any noise when I’m trying to sleep. Frustratingly ,I normally end up worrying that my husband won’t wake if one of the children starts to cry, or that we’ll get burgled & I won’t hear the dog barking or a door opening or the tell tale smashing of a window. I stay awake pondering random stuff which sort of defeats the object of the earplugs in the first place (because sleep is still not being had). I even lay awake & wonder if I’ve just heard a suspicious noise even though I know that’s impossible!

And then there’s the morning itchy ear-athon in which you remove the earplugs & you have to rub & rub & rub & find an earbud & scratch that itch that has suddenly sprung up from nowhere! Boo you earplugs, you unnecessary yet necessary evil!! BOO YOU!!

Mum Problem #2

Everything is a competition.

mums competing

Mum A: My child can use armbands now.
Mum B: Yeh, well mine has been out of armbands for a year.
Mum C: Really? Well mine’s never used armbands.
Mum D: My child can swim the 100metres now.
Mum E: Mine can swim 800metres.
Mum F: Mine can swim a mile.
Mum G: Mine’s going to swim the English Channel.
Mum H: Mine’s swimming the Atlantic Ocean…

And on it goes.

Ridiculous. But such an easy trap to fall into (My two boys can both use the toilet now – BOOM!)

Mum Problem #3

You become a professional worrier.

mum worries

Whats that rash? Is that seat belt tight enough? Do we have enough nappies? I think we need one more change of clothes. Are you sure that’s the right amount of Calpol? This show looks a bit scary. Are those shoes too tight? Did I give them enough vegetables? Is that a thick enough blanket? Are they warm enough? Are they too cold? Why are they crying? Do they have a fever? Should we have a schedule? Is the schedule we have working? Am I doing this right? Do they know I love them? Do they love me? Why do they keep fighting with each other? & on & on & on it goes…

Mum Problem #4

The poo.

poop

The poo, the poo, the poo, the poo, the poo. Number two. Doodoo. Jobby’s. Faeces. Caca. The shadoobie. Butt goblins. The funky monkey. Bum nuggets. Hell’s candy. Potty animals. The logs (TIIIIMMMMBER!!).

Ok, I just grossed myself out there a bit.

To be continued...

“I am not an angel [..] and I will not be one till I die: I will be myself.” Jane Eyre

It seems as though Noah has spent the last half hour building a tower in the middle of the living room floor using the cushions from the sofa. All of them.

I wonder whether, if I crawled under it, I could pass off as being ‘playful mummy’ and not simply ‘nearly unconscious mummy’?

I wonder whether, if I go to sleep on the sofa, he’ll play nicely and watch Little Einstein’s or in fact power bomb on top of me and scream about unwanted episodes in my ear? Or just plain wreck my house?

I wonder if Babu will wake up from his nap as soon as I close my eyes?

I wonder if thinking all of these things makes me a bad mother, or whether in fact every mother fights these thoughts, and gets to the dreaded 3pm slot and wonders whether she’s going to make it til bed time?

So far today, I’ve washed and dried up – twice. The first time being the stuff I couldn’t be bothered doing last night. The second lot from breakfast and lunch. As soon as I woke, I came downstairs, put Babu up for his first nap and did an hour of Zumba on the Wii followed by 15 minutes of my usual half hour of morning sit ups (I’ll do the rest later.) I’ve done two loads of washing and drying. I’ve tidied the living room numerous times. I’ve read a little, drawn a little, painted a little, wrestled a lot. Done some dancing, singing; played hide and seek. I’ve de-wedgied Noah and wiped Babu’s pooey butt. I’ve broken up fights, dealt with timeouts, cooked, scrubbed, tickled, vacuumed, eaten a banana and, later, a ham salad.

I am very satisfied.

I am very flawed.

I am very tired.

I wonder if Noah fancies a nap?

Me, myself, their teeth and my handbag

A handbag. An accessory. A hold all for a woman’s secret world. Mascara, moisturiser, tampons, earphones, hairbrush, notepad, book, tweezers, nail file, plasters, earrings; a land no man dare venture.

We forget when we have kids, what that’s like – our own little world full of those small things that give us pleasure, individuality, an identity. I pretty much forgoed that ‘right’ from the time we had Noah. Two weeks after he was born, I headed back to university (my second year) loaded with a packed (ugly) bag full of breastmilk, breast pumps, changes of clothes, nappies. I had another bag too. Equally heavy, equally packed, but with English books, notepads and numerous Starbucks receipts. I drank caffeine back then. It was a simpler time when I was more awake but poorer.

Makeup was a nonentity. The only time I saw a hairbrush was first thing in the morning; if it wasn’t for the milk-filled big boobs, I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t have resembled a woman at all. In fact, I’m not so sure I even resembled a human being in those days.

We take it for granted, our handbag, our own space filled with our little comforts.

Around a week ago I realised that all my handbags – yes, all – are no longer in existence. Whether they were lost when we moved house, or are packed into the loft somewhere, or were eaten by a teething child, I have no idea, but I no longer have one. Or rather, had one.

(Look at those teeth – LETHAL!)

Last week, I decided to buy a bag. Nothing flashy or expensive (what’s the point?) Not bank balance damaging but attractive. In other words, nothing to cry about if it does get painted on or thrown up in. Still, it’s MINE. The excitement at having my own little bag again is a little embarrassing but ultimately WONDERFUL! It’s big enough to fit all my essentials … and nothing else.

Though, I did find a tube of teething gel in there earlier. I must stop this from happening. But how – HOW!?

Surprise, Surprise! (Cilla Black eat your heart out …)

Family play time’s always fun.

The boys are big on the wrestling. Babu’s favourite thing at the moment is to sit straddled across either Ash’s, mine, or anyone else’s tummy who’s stupid enough to lie on the floor, and bounce up and down like he’s riding a pony.

(Poor grandad.)

This is fine; unless you’ve just eaten a meal. Then it’s not so much fun as a disaster of vomitile proportions waiting to happen.

Thus far, we’ve managed to avoid any ‘accidents’.

So after our little play, it was bath and bed time. The boys were both over tired (the excitement of getting some fish had got them all tuckered out). – Yes, we now have fish. Despite my crippling fear of all things scaly.

Babu basically screamed all the way through his bath then screamed some more while he was being dried. We played peekaboo with his towel.

(This was no easy feat given that I was trying to dry him at the same time and he was hogging the majority of the towel.) I then just gave up when he started alternating between laughing and sobbing.

Note: when babies are tired, they become hysterical.

Once dressed, he clambered on top of me, straddling my tummy and alternated between cuddling, bouncing or kissing me.

Note: Babu kisses tend to consist of him opening his mouth wide, sticking his tongue out and pressing his face against yours. Cute. And kind of gross.

Anyway, as I sat up to prepare for story time I felt a wetness on my ear and a bit in my hair. I thought nothing of it and just wiped it away – drool probably or his toothpaste?

Later in the night, I kept getting this strange smell. Sickly and sweet. I hadn’t emptied the bathroom bin for a few days – maybe it was something in there? No. Bedroom bin? Nope. Something under the bed? Nada. A lurking nasty in the kitchen? Nein. Leftover food kicked under the sofa? Nothing.

I asked Ash if he could smell it. No. And then it suddenly dawned on me.

“Is it me??!” I asked, realisation dropping on me like a bomb (a stinky bomb.)

What if that wasn’t just dribble earlier? What if it wasn’t toothpaste? What if it was *gulp* sick?

Note: you may or may not know this already, but poo I can deal with. Pee’s a breeze. Blood? Cinch. But sick – SICK?! No!! Judge me all you like, but I can’t even stand my own sick. Vomit is a no go area. Yuck.

And so Ash leaned over, had a sniff of my neck, my hair, my ear, and then pulled back, a look of amusement and disgust mingling on his face.

My child threw up on me. IN MY EAR!!

Excuse me while I go shower my head. Again.

I’m back!

We are currently in a battle (of epic proportions) with our internet provider. It seems as thought they are incapable of turning our internet on. This is despite us having had internet (without issues) for the last few years. Hmm.

Anyway …

I used to think the worst thing about changing Babu’s nappy was him wriggling all over the place, causing it to take twenty minutes per nappy change. Today I realised that I was wrong. The worst thing is getting poo under your fingernails.

Happy internet surfing and nappy changing folks!