By the way, I’ve decided to start doing a little review of my week. Allegedly, according to my head, I’ll do one of these every week… but let’s face it, I’m the flakiest of flakes when it comes to blogging so this might not last long. Either that, or it’s going to be the kick up the arse I need to get blogging regularly again. Can you believe, back in my Blogger days (don’t try to find it; you won’t succeed), I used to blog at least every other day? For a while, I challenged myself to do it every day! How the hell did I find the time? How the hell did I find enough to talk about?!
Anyway, we’ll see how this goes. It might end up being every week, it might be every other week or even less, but it’s something I’d like to do. I’ve already forgotten so much about Ted’s tiny-babyhood, I want to make sure I document his life a bit better so I can look back on it in the future.
WARNING: this post is largely about bodily fluids. It’s not for the faint hearted.
This week has been… panicky.
On the surface it’s just been a nice, normal week. If you look on my Instagram, there you go, baby spam as usual, all present and correct.
But at times it’s been a bit stressful.
Last weekend, Ted started – TMI coming up, beware to those of you with a nervous disposition – to get The Poos.
Nappies. Of. Doom.
Until you’ve dealt with an eight-month-old baby with explosive diarrhoea shooting out every forty minutes, but still happy enough to shriek with joy and stamp in the poo before you get the nappy off, you have not dealt with life.
I wish I was exaggerating. But that’s my boy: he was probably having awful stomach cramps, I can only imagine the horrible burning liquid poo situation, but he was still giggling and making a break for the hallway (stark naked) while I was crying and trying to clean ochre porridge from his legs. And his sleepsuit. And my jeans. And (ugh) my hands.
But it seemed to have cleared up by the time I got home from work on Monday. My first proper weekday, and it was absolutely fine; so busy over lunch the hours just flew by, so quiet in the afternoon I could get everything cleaned up without having to rush around. My new colleagues seem like a great bunch; I think I’m going to enjoy being back at work as much as is humanly possible to when you work in retail.
Anyway. A couple of horrible nappies aside, Ted seemed to be getting back to normal. So on Tuesday, I had no qualms about taking him to my friend Jo’s house for a little playdate with her baby, James. Another friend, Lauren, was there too, with little George. All lovely, all fine and dandy, delicious lunch made by Jo… and then it came to feeding time at the zoo. Aka, Teddy-lunch.
It seemed like all in one go, all hell broke loose. James was crying for his own lunch. George was crying because he was having his nappy changed. And right at the end of his pasta bolognaise, Ted did a massive burp and started throwing up.
He’s never been a sicky baby; the occasional milky posset when he was tiny, but nothing much more than that. This was different. This was real. Proper human sick, heaving and heaving and smelling of bile.
All over himself, all over poor James’ floor seat, all over poor Jo’s floor.
So there were two babies screaming blue murder, Ted retching like an extra from The Exorcist, and me yelling “OH GOD OH NO OH TED AARGH BABY NO STOP OH GOD!”.
Anyone who says maternity leave is easy needs to go and watch that ten minutes of our lives and think again.
Thank god Jo has a sensible head. While I was still flapping around with a bit of loo roll she’d whipped away the tray Ted had puked on and volunteered everything from the bath to spare clothes.
Ted, meanwhile, was happily trying to eat a sicky dish sponge and wondering where his bowl and spoon had gone.
I took him home once he’d got cleaned up. Little sod was absolutely fine; he had a good old sing in the pram while we walked through Didsbury, then promptly fell asleep for the entire walk home. He woke up obviously feeling happily refreshed, sucked down a bottle of milk and had a banana.
I, meanwhile, was a big ball of stress, panicking that he was going to be dehydrated, terrified that he wouldn’t keep anything down, wondering if I should call the doctor…
The next morning, I decided we’d skip our usual Wednesday baby group at Waterstones, and have a nice calm day in the house. Partly because I didn’t want to potentially infect other babies – partly because I wanted to stay within easy reach of a stack of muslins, kitchen roll, and the bath, in case Ted started puking again.
One nappy full of poo in the morning, and that was it. Ted was absolutely fine. In fact, I was more exhausted after our ‘quiet’ day in than I ever am when we’ve been out in the day. It seemed like one long slog of a day, racing up and down the hallway ‘playing’ football (aka Ted chasing his football up and down while squealing with joy), plucking Ted down from the desk when he’d climbed onto it, stopping Ted climbing up our bedroom wardrobe, pulling Ted out of the washing machine, putting the food processor back in the cupboard after Ted decided to play with it… all accompanied by the endless mundane loop of Justin’s House and Bing on the TV.
Motherhood is so glamorous.
Dressed as Woody from Toy Story, having just pulled all the DVDs off the shelf again. Poorly, my arse.
We managed to get back to normal for the rest of the week. We went to the Mother and Baby Choir at Chorlton on Thursday, which we both love. I love having a little sing (even though I’m tone deaf and probably should be a little – lot – quieter about it) and Ted loves crawling round and round the room stealing toys from other babies. He also absolutely adores The Wheels On the Bus, which we sing at the end of every session.
I remember when I was pregnant… “Oh, we’ll just introduce the baby to good music from early on. Metal, of course. We’ll take him to festivals with ear defenders and he won’t know anything different. We won’t need any of those daft nursery rhymes!”
Insert hollow laugh here.
Ted’s favourite is probably still The Wheels On the Bus, though he’s also a great fan of Head Shoulders Knees and Toes, and the ubiquitous Wind the Bobbin Up. Row Row Row Your Boat is also a great favourite, as is If You’re Happy and You Know It. He quite enjoys watching my Nightwish DVDs, but every other band leaves him cold.
He’ll learn. One day.
He loves it so much I even got him a singing Wheels On the Bus book, which is the new bane of my life. Beep beep!
We did one of the Waterstones baby groups on Friday, which are also brilliant. I hate hate hated baby groups when Ted was tiny: my social anxiety kicked in in a big way and I just sat in the corner, grinning manically at anyone who smiled at me then failing miserably at making conversation. I was convinced everyone else was so much more grown-up than me, so much more motherly.
Now, I make a real effort to join in and have a good time, and it’s paid off. We have a lovely time, and even join some of the other mums for coffee after the Waterstones groups. Yes, I spend most of every session chasing Ted across the floor as he decides he wants to crawl off and pull books off the shelves, but still.
It was great on Friday because it was payday… and I was given the extra boost of Ted having an epic two hour nap in his pram after tiring himself out at Waterstones. I could go shopping!
Obviously, I’m only just off maternity leave, so I’ve still got to be very careful about money, but I tell you what… Primark is bloody brilliant at the moment. Cheap and cheerful, and bursting at the seams with Disney things. I’m not remotely ashamed of the fact that most of my summer wardrobe is either branded with mouse heads, or a sneaky Disneybound (I’ll get into that at some point). In the great rainstorms of the past week I developed a hole in my trusty trainers (it might have been there a while but I only noticed when rainwater started seeping in) so on payday I ‘nipped’ into Primark to replace them. One nip later and I had a veritable haul.
I’m writing this on Saturday evening, and we’ve had a pretty nondescript day. Tesco, Levenshulme Market, and Aldi. Exciting stuff. Ted’s got two days with his daddy now while I pootle off to work – I’m not going to lie, I’m looking forward to the half an hour each way on the bus where I can read my book in peace. I have a self-imposed reading list as long as my arm and every time I go into Waterstones, it gets longer and longer. I might have to go to work, but at least it gives me some reading time!
Showing off his froggy leggings before choir
Very busy waving at people walking past my work