Food, General, Parenting, Parenting, Personal, Uncategorized

What’s Been Going On?

It’s been a while Again since I have written a blog post, it’s been Christmas and New Year, and then the struggle of getting back into the swing of work/housework/parenting after having a little time off at Xmas is always draining. When is it you should stop eating crackers and cheese and pate and chocolate for every meal..? Asking for a friend that’s all.

So, as usual, Christmas was hectic and stressful, but honestly this year has been the first year that I have ACTUALLY enjoyed Christmas Day from the beginning to the end. We had Norms’ family over in the morning, and then Will had a sleep after playing with his new toys, I prepped Xmas Dinner, then we ate, opened more presents and just played for the rest of the day. It was very relaxed, none of this to-ing and fro-ing which I HATE doing, as awful as it sounds, we always say to people that if they want to see us on Xmas Day, then  they can come to us, as our parents live at complete OPPOSITE ends of the city. We did it for a couple of years Pre-Will, and we weren’t getting in until late afternoon and we were having to please everyone else instead of pleasing ourselves. So we knocked that on the head, and Norms’ family just come and see us because that’s what they like to do.

As some of you may know, I found myself worrying and getting myself so stressed and anxious about Christmas. Would William enjoy it? Would he have enough presents from me and Norms? Will I get good pictures that I should share on social media? Will I need to buy him more presents? Should I of bought Norms more presents? Will the dinner be nice? Will Norms Grandma be out of hospital? “AM I GOING TO PLEASE EVERYBODY ON EARTH AND THERE WILL BE WORLD PEACE??”

I was driving myself crazy, not sleeping, seeing the Instagram stories of people buying their kids all these bloody gifts, several stockings full of presents, their partners expensive watches or designer clothes. And there was me, with a book shelf from eBay  and a stuffed toy duck for William, and a Body Shop gift set and a top from Sports Direct for Norms. I felt so inadequate, and I know, I know, it’s not about the money, but sometimes, let’s be honest, it is. You work all year, and want to spoil the people you love the most. And unfortunately (because 1. I don’t earn a great deal of money and 2. I am shit with money and don’t save up and buy kebabs with it instead. #real) But, the gifts that William received were fine, lets be honest, the kid is 2 years old and hasn’t got a clue about what day it is, I mean he didn’t give a toss about his Xmas dinner. Do you know what he had for his Xmas dinner? Tomato Soup. So festive. And Norms fully understands the circumstance I am in with the whole money situation, but he liked his gifts he received, and to be honest it was just nice to be able to spend some proper quality time together, as his hours are erratic with his job, so we rarely spend proper time together as a family, so just to be able to do that was lovely.

As usual, Christmas comes with a stereotypical family crisis. Norms’ Grandma has been unwell and was in hospital over the festive period so the family was a bit upset about that, and also there are some other things happening with his family at the moment, which I wont go into as it’s not for social media, but things were a bit fraught sometimes. Plus my mum was poorly over the festive period with that horrendous flu bug thing that makes you feel like you’ve got the Bubonic plague and are on death’s door, so we didn’t get chance to see as much family as we usually would over the festive period. But that’s just the way it goes sometimes. We just chilled out, spent time together as a 3, and that was lovely in itself.

I also spent a little less time on my phone over the Christmas season. It wasn’t so much a conscious decision, I just have realised that a lot of the time I have spare at home is often spent with my face in my phone on instagram, and not concentrating on the here and now, and I was missing out on family time, things that were perhaps happening and would maybe not happen again, all for the sake of what? A double tap and a funny 15 second video? Plus, because me and norms don’t see each other a great deal, when we are together I am aware that (as the majority of other couples probably do as well), most of our time is spent with our faces in our mobile devices, when we should be talking and interacting with each other. And to be honest, it was good to get back to basics.

Another thing which has happened recently is William’s speech. He is coming along SO MUCH at the moment. He can say a few little words, and I feel like now I can actually COMMUNICATE with him and he can communicate back to me, don’t get me wrong, there are still PLENTY of times when I just look at him in disbelief and think to myself “what the actual hell is he trying to tell me??”, but the difference just in the last few weeks has been amazing. And because he is speaking a little and can communicate with me, the temper tantrums are becoming gradually less, and I believe it’s because we I can understand him and what he wants and needs. His personality is now starting to come out too, and his nursery have even told me that he is coming out of his shell more and more, and is willing to get involved and play more, which for me as a mum makes me SO happy, knowing that he is going to be there for the day and not be feeling sad or upset or scared, he’s getting stuck in and making friends and it just makes my heart hurt with pride and love.  We also had a health visitor appointment just after the new year, I am going to write a blog post about how it went and how the whole lead up to it made me feel, it didn’t go as badly as I was expecting it to, and afterwards I felt relieved, one because it was over but two because she didn’t say she was concerned about him, so that was also a massive weight off my shoulders.

I have also been receiving a lot of positive feedback from my instagram account, which makes me really happy. I’m not going to lie, when I gain new followers it DOES make me nervous, because I feel like sometimes you are expected to keep up this massive “insta-prescence” , but in reality I am just a normal working mum who just does silly stupid shit on a social media app, and people seem to like it. I will be writing about how it makes me feel personally too, as I feel that it’s probably how many people who use social media probably feel too.

And that’s about it! Nothing exciting really, however I just thought I would check in with you guys and let you know I am still here,  I’m going to try and blog more, but do let me know what sort of stuff you would like to see, I am always open to suggestions and ready for a ramble (understatement on my part).

General, Personal

It’s fine. I’m fine.

It’s been a while since I last wrote a post, and I really have no idea why. Sometimes I guess you get like….a block? And also, stuff happens, life gets in the way too I think.

Recently I’ve been feeling a bit down in the dumps, stressed and worried, not sleeping great and just generally a bit MEH. Which is hilarious, because it’s coming up to “the most wonderful time of the year” (who can say that sentence without singing it to the tune – I can’t). And it’s been my birthday too, which of COURSE is always supposed to be such a joyous and all singing-all dancing time.

The truth is, I’ve been feeling a bit low about a number of things, and I thought, instead of stewing on it, just come here and blabber it all out to you unfortunate lot who happen to read the stuff I put out there. So here I am.

I don’t know why, but whenever it’s like, birthday season, for me, you always expect something AMAZING and MASSIVE to happen, like when you see all these people on social media posting photos of themselves, in a candid pose lying in their bed’s on their birthdays with the room filled with balloons and home-made cards from the kids and a lovely breakfast and flowers on the bed, for some reason we now feel like that’s how birthdays SHOULD be, so when you wake up to just another day, getting ready one handed and trying not to have a mascara wand stuck into your eye while a 2 year old is hanging off you, and your husband hasn’t got you a card to open and you have no home-made card from your little ray of sunshine, you can’t help but feel a little, well, disappointed I suppose.

Which I Know sounds HORRENDOUSLY selfish and so so ungrateful of me. In reality, I don’t actually give a shit that I’m not surrounded by balloons (bloody hate balloons me). And I’m not all about the fuss and the big grand gestures really. I’m happy with a bunch of flowers, a couple of beers and a burger. (honestly, love me a burger.) But for some reason, I build up this big thing in my head based on what EVERYONE ELSE is doing. It’s one of my biggest flaws, I am a very jealous person. I’m jealous of everyone else’s lives as they all seem to be so perfect, and free of problems and the usual day-to-day boring rubbish, it’s all parties, events, well-behaved children and family days out with no limit on expenditure. I’m jealous of other people’s relationships – they seem to be so in love, never argue and always make time for each other. I’m jealous of other people’s children, how they behave as opposed to mine, how “much further on” they seem in their development, basically, I’m always just thinking that I’m either doing something wrong, or that I’m missing out on something.

I know that everyone’s relationships aren’t all peachy keen and like a fairy-tale. I KNOW this. But yet I still compare mine to others. I KNOW that every child is different, and that William will get to where he needs to be whenever he gets there. Yet I still compare him to other children. Why? Why do we do this to ourselves? Because on social media, at the moment, people seem to want to only show the good bits. If you follow me on my Instagram account, you will know that I really do try and keep it as real as possible, and share when I’m having a good time and also when I’m having a not-so good time.

I think Christmas also brings a lot of pressures to us. I know I go on about it all the time, but Norms works away a lot, but he does that in order for us to have nice things and to get the money in. The more he works away = the more dollar he earns. This obviously puts a strain on our relationship, as we don’t get to DO the normal things, like he doesn’t come home at 5pm every day and I get to toddle off for a bath or go paint my nails, he can sometimes be away Monday right through to Saturday lunch time. And yes, I know that others have it worse, for example military families, but it does take it’s toll on us as a family. But, at Christmas what do you need lots of? MONEY. Hence why he does it, and why I try and do whatever overtime is available at work, to earn some extra money. CHRISTMAS is another time that always makes me feel like utter shit, because everyone is posting there homemade fucking chutney’s, and homemade footprint cards, and the halls are decked and the presents are all wrapped in biodegradable brown paper made with unicorn tail hair and costs £6 a roll. “ALL FOR THE GRAM.” Which is great, if you can afford to buy your wrapping paper from Harvey Nick’s then crack on, but sometimes I can’t help but get sucked into the whole thing, thinking I should do it this way, or that way, or buy a certain gift or whatever because it’s what EVERYONE is doing. The reality is, I work 2 and a half days which, lets be honest, doesn’t pay that great and after my wages have gone in, within a week I have around 80 quid left to last me the rest of the month, after all the bills and nursery fees etc have come out. So I really do have to be careful with the pennies. And that’s just the circumstance we are in, but we are happy and healthy, and in reality that’s what is really important. But even though I know this, it’s still hard for me to not compare myself to others. I would love NOTHING MORE than to be able to go out into any shop, even just Sainsbury’s or Asda, and pick up clothes and gifts for myself, William, or anyone and think “yeah, I want to buy that, I am going to buy it.” Because in reality, I can’t do that. I have to SERIOUSLY consider whether I should buy a five pound concealer because if I do, I might not be able to afford to put fuel in the car, or get some Pampers for Will. Like, that’s the reality, I have to be so SO careful. And it hurts a bit when people complain they are skint, right after buying a new car, or spending £200 on their partner for Christmas, or buying a new kitchen appliance just like that, no worries. Like, honey, you literally have no idea.

I’m making a real conscious effort to try not to put so much pressure on myself this year, because it really doesn’t do me any good, I get told off by my friends ALL THE TIME for putting myself down, worrying about things that haven’t even happened yet, or comparing my life and my family to others. I’m often the one in my groups of friends who is there for everyone else, always lending an ear, or letting them peck my head, but quite often I don’t return the favour, and peck their heads back. I moan about it to Norms all the time – how he never talks to me and keeps his feelings to himself and never opens up to me, yet I do the same thing to my bloody friends. Such a hypocrite.

I guess what this post was, was just a way for me to ramble, have a rant, and let off some steam. We’ve got a few things going on within the family at the moment, and sometimes having a RIGHT GOOD MOAN can do you the world of good. So, if you have made it this far, I owe you a favour, because it’s probably made NO sense, but thanks for sticking with it, and I promise I’ll make the next post a bit more upbeat! (*hopes nothing goes wrong from now until then)

Beauty, General, Personal

Love The Skin You’re In

Following on from my previous post (you can read it here if you so desire), I thought I would just write up a little post on how I felt personally in MYSELF and in my own skin whilst on holiday.

I don’t know about anyone else, but before you go on holiday, it would usually be filled with going on crash diets, I’ve previously done diet shakes in the past (don’t ever try it – they are absolutely rancid and DONT WORK) to try and shift a few pounds before going away and to “feel  better in a bikini” or be “bikini body ready”.

This is the first year where I honestly couldn’t of given two shits what I looked like. Of course, I still wanted to look half decent, didn’t want to be scaring any of the locals or other holiday-makers in my 7 year old bikinis, but honestly, before going away I didn’t even give my weight a second thought. I would usually be panicking, thinking “oh god I have to be half naked in front of all those people, what am I going to do about my cellulite, my bingo wings, etc”. And I would be SO BOTHERED about going on the beach or by the pool, making sure I had every sort of cover up that there was ever designed with me in case I wanted to go to the bar or the loo, and HAD to cover myself up because NO ONE would want to see me in a bikini or swimsuit, asking Norms if I looked ok, and asking him not to take photos of me on holiday for fear of being “too fat”.

I think, now I am a mother, I have got this new confidence that I never had before. I’ve HAD to go out of my comfort zone, for the sake of my child, and I’ve HAD to be confident when usually I would shy away from confrontation or situations that would make me cringe into myself. And I think since then, I have just learnt to accept and have this new confidence in myself as a person, both inside and out. Yes, I could be slimmer, yes I could probably work out, yes I could probably eat less cheese and bread, but YES I could also be a lot more unhealthy and have really bad habits and be some sort of, I dunno, criminal or complete arsehole. But I’m NOT. I’m just a normal mum, on holiday, wearing a bikini or cozzie chasing my toddler around and eating Cheetos.

So, before we went, I had a little look online and in the shops, and bought a couple of bits to try. I ended up taking a cozzie and a bikini from Next, a bikini from Boohoo, a cozzie from Sports Direct and another bikini from Asda. I went for high waisted bikini bottoms, and ones that supported the melons. My favourite bikini was the one from Boohoo,  I just felt like it was flattering and a good support on the old boobs, and the bottoms were a good fit. I wore it nearly every day.

I’m not going to lie, of course I looked at other people who were more toned and looked like models in their swimwear and I would be lying if I didn’t say I felt a little self confident. But, with a toddler, you have no time to think about yourself, you are constant from the moment they wake up to the moment they fall asleep. So I had no choice but to just – go with it. And do you know what, after I while I didn’t even give it a second thought, taking my shorts and t shirt off and just being in my bikini or cozzie, because I was just wanting to go spend time with my family. And really, thinking about it, who is ACTUALLY looking at you and is ACTUALLY that bothered about what you look like in a bikini? Because the reality is, its probably less than 1%. Everyone is too bothered about themselves and how THEY look, or looking after their children, or applying suncream, reading a book…the list goes on. We build ourselves up to think that as soon as we take one leg out of our shorts that a klaxon is going to go off and people are going to stop dead in their tracks and look and gawp at you in your swimwear. This holiday I finally realised – people really, really, couldn’t care less. The world isn’t going to stop because I am in a SWIMSUIT. Theresa May isn’t going to call a phase 2 crisis meeting with the Home Secretary. It’s FINE.

With this new confidence I can honestly say that I felt so much happier this holiday, and wasn’t worrying constantly or watching what I was eating or drinking, I relaxed and enjoyed myself and my first family holiday. And honestly, it was a revelation. Sure, I’m not a size 8 (or whatever the “perfect” size is supposed to be these days) and im sure some people probably looked at me and thought – oh, she could do to lose weight – or – oh she shouldn’t be wearing a bikini because of her size – but honestly, truly, I really couldn’t care what people thought. And it was so so refreshing. Here are a few pics of me on holiday, outfits I wore and of course, my fave swimsuit from Boohoo.

I have cellulite. I have wobbly thighs. I have bingo wings. When I lie down and look at my phone I have double (*treble) chins. I have a tummy. I have stretch marks. But do you know? Who cares? So does the next person. We can pick ourselves apart until the sun comes up, but what good does that honestly, really do to anyone? It just takes us to dark and unhappy places. I once read something which went along the lines of “Beauty is in the eye if the beholder, however the most liberating thing is that in fact, YOU are the beholder.” The things that you pick apart on yourself, the fact your teeth aren’t straight, the freckles you have, the curly hair, the things you dislike about yourselves, are the things which make you unique and, more often than not, someone else finds endearing and beautiful. We should start to remember that the person staring back at ourselves in the mirror is actually the one who is the biggest critique, and no one else. That needs to stop. How can we teach our children to love themselves and be happy and confident when we can’t follow on the same advice we are serving?

Baby, Personal

My Anxiety 

I thought I’d do this blog post, mainly as a bit of a rant and to let off steam, but also to perhaps help other people, and to see if anyone else out there feels the same as me. And also because it’s been Mental Health Awareness Week recently, it’s made me think about mine.

I’ve always been a bit of a worrier. Like, I am that person who is always procastinating on what “what if’s” of life, or worrying about things that might go wrong or might happen. But when I was pregnant I seemed to be a lot more calmer. Maybe it was because literally you cannot control what is happening to your body, and you cannot (unless of course you have a planned c-section) control or do anything about when you are going to have your baby.  So I just sort of chilled out. (Until I was in labour. And then I was most certainly NOT chilled out.)

When William was born the overwhelming maternal instinct and need to care for him really took me by surprise. I’ve never been the most maternal person, but it hit me like a sledgehammer. I was so in love with this little baby, and I felt so so protective of him. Which I imagine is every mother’s instinct and feelings towards their children.

But with that came more worry. And paranoia. I was fine at first. People would come over to see us and meet the baby, and they would hold him and it was lovely and we’d also sit and have a cup of tea and chat about the Labour and how cute he was etc etc. But when it became most days, and people weren’t actually coming to see me, they were coming just to see my baby, and as soon as they arrived they were straight to his crib or trying to pick him up, I started to feel anxious.

As all new mums know, trying to get into a routine is so hard with a newborn. Your lives are all over the place, your grabbing hard, cold pieces of toast whenever possible, juggling housework and trying to keep your personal hygiene on a somewhat acceptable level, and also having to deal with visitors and friends and family members not wanting to leave you alone. And​  even when they weren’t “just passing so we thought we’d pop in” (yeah ok then) they were texting or ringing you every few hours; “Hows William doing?” “How was last night with William?” “Do you need anything?” “We text you a couple of hours ago and you haven’t replied is everything ok?” “Just tried ringing you and there was no answer are you sure you’re ok?” “We’ve just been knocking at the door and there was no response we are worried” “can we come back and see you at tea time?” Etc etc. Sometimes you don’t want to answer the texts and calls because you’re either elbow deep in korma crap or cleaning up puke or just HAVING A NAP​.

Now I know some people reading this love all that sort of thing all the attention and the fuss, and are probably thinking that I’m being a right negative Nancy, or being ungrateful. I’m not. I’m just wanting to spend some time alone with my new baby, catch up on sleep, perhaps watch an episode of Corrie while he sleeps IN PEACE. Looking like a goblin from another world in my 7 day old sick stained PJ’S and not having to entertain anyone but myself. 

So dealing with all that, and having unwanted advice thrown at you left right and centre, and people coming and disrupting you, plus the sleep deprivation and the fact my husband works away, it made me feel a little on edge if I’m honest. I used to love this little bubble me and William had, just me and him, and I felt like other people would ruin it.

I’m not going to lie, i still feel like it now. When my mother in law used to hold William it used to make me feel sick to my stomach. Even my mum or my step dad. I’d be holding him and people would say “oh, can I have a hold?”, Or Norms would ask his mum if she wanted to have a cuddle with him, and I could literally feel the dread and fear and bitterness bubbling up inside me. It used to give me goosebumps. So I’d hand him over, without really wanting to, and I’d be fighting back the tears, trying to keep my shit together and not lose my rag and snatch him back and run out of the door to the safety of our own house where no one else was apart from us three.

I was jealous of other people holding my own baby. Jealous, even though I spend more or less 24 hours a day, 7 days a week with him. I was scared that they wouldn’t hold him right, or that they would hurt him. I felt angry that they wanted to hold him, to love him, because he was my baby. Not theirs. Mine. 

It got so bad, that when other people held him I’d get myself that’s het up about it I’d have to leave the room. I was concerned that the way they were doing things wasn’t the right way, because it may have been different to my way. And of course, my way is always right. Or in my head, it is.

I’m going to be honest, I’m better now, well, not as much as I’d like to be but I am getting there. There are a few instances where I’ve lost my shit and got myself in such a state because say, my sister in law has held William, and taken him for a little walk around the house, and I can’t see him and it freaks me out. But I’m sure I’ll get better with it as time goes on. I need to.

It may sound ridiculous to some people, and some people totally won’t get it, and may let their baby’s stay out at a weekend and enjoy the time away from them, or some people may be reading this thinking I’m a complete nut job, or somebody might be reading this and thinking “oh, thank GOD it’s not just me”. It’s a silent battle I have to have with myself. I never ever thought I’d be one of these paranoid mums, but hey, here I am. But it’s coming from a good place, a place where the love is overwhelming and unconditional and sometimes painful, the amount that you love them.

I’ve even left him three times, one night with my mum while we went for a meal with friends, one afternoon also with mum when we went out for drinks and lunch, and also with my mother in law while we had drinks again one afternoon. Each of those times has been really hard for me to do, and I’m not going to lie in the lead up to the event, I’ve been awake in the night, worrying if he is going to be okay, worrying if I should be leaving him, etc etc . And when I have left him, there have been a few tears. All mine. He doesn’t realise I’ve gone half the time I think.

Of course I know I need to leave him with people more. I feel ridiculous that I don’t, and if I did I would probably feel a whole lot better about things as I would have time to be  me, rather than just mummy. Plus I know that he needs to learn to be comfortable around other people. When I go back to work, I’m going to have to suck it up. Its going to happen. I just feel like I really have to take it one step at a time. I feel silly, and embarrassed​, i mean, i come across as this over confident, bolshy, loud mouthed woman, who seems to have it all planned out, yet in reality, i am actually so weak. And I’m sure other people will agree. And maybe some people will be wondering why I haven’t just gone to the doctors, got some happy pills and got the fuck on with it. 

Ok, so maybe I have got a little bit of post natal depression, who knows, but I don’t necessarily want to just go get some pills and forget about it. I talk to my friends, talk to my family, talk to my husband, they understand I find it difficult, and they are there with me 100% . They might be frustrated, I know sure as hell my mum and mother in law are itching to have William more, but they also probably see me, a new mother, and understand it’s each to their own, and understand that everybody is different and everybody does things at their own pace. And for that I thank them, and my friends, keeping my head from spinning off when I feel like I’m not in control. And also i thank my husband for putting up with my little panics, my endless crying, when I know he wants to spend more time as a couple with me, yet I am so consumed with being a mother and being afraid to let William go, I know it must be frustrating for him. Especially if you take into account the sex evacuation I was speaking about in my earlier post . The poor bastard. 

People may also be reading this and feel the same as me. And if anyone is, then please don’t feel alone. Speak to someone. It does help. And don’t think that your stupid, be embarrassed or struggle on your own. Anxiety is real, it happens, and it doesn’t show that you aren’t coping.

It shows you care. It shows you are being a mother. 

General, Parenting, Personal

Let’s Talk About (lack of) Sex, (with a) Baby

Ok, so my husband will probably NOT be happy about this post, but I’ve always said I’ll be honest and this is real life and I’m sure as hell, in fact I’m 100% certain that I am NOT the only one going through a sex drought.

And I’m not talking a dry spell. I’m talking about a full on desert, dry, open plain, hallucinating about a waterfall DROUGHT. 

Sex evacuation. 

I mean, I can’t even blame him. It’s me that is turned off. The fuse box has blown. Im clocked out. I am just not interested.

Of course when you first have a baby, for medical reasons you can’t have sex for so many weeks, and you have this new baby who takes up all of your time and energy, and you are both sleep deprived, and getting an early night means just that…lights off and GOODNIGHT.  None of this hanky panky business. Bed is for sleeeeeeeeeeeeeep.

But William is now 7 months (can we just take a minute to process that information…oh my god). And I can categorically count the amount of times we have…ahem..had relations…on one hand. 

I find myself overthinking this. Am I normal? I bet everyone else is doing it. I bet my husband hates me. Maybe he doesn’t find me attractive anymore? Is there something wrong with me? I bet he’s going to leave me. I wonder if he’s going to look elsewhere? Why don’t I want to have sex???

The truth is, from everyone I have spoken to, sex is generally the last thing on any of our mind’s. We as women are constantly thinking about the next time the baby will wake, how many bottles to sterilise, is his room too hot, oh shit I need to put a jar of food in his changing bag, did I take the dummy out from the car, did I sterilise said dummy before I plugged it in my baby’s mouth while I was in Aldi and he had a meltdown because he wasn’t allowed to suck the trolley, did I put that shitty nappy in the bin or is it still on the floor in the living room,  have I shaved my armpits this week?… And so on and so forth. 

Of course I fancy my husband. I look at him all the time and feel very lucky to have someone who is actually attractive who likes me and wants to be naked with me. I love the bones of him. I love him so much it hurts sometimes. But the truth is, I have so many other things I could be doing, that getting in between the sheets for a quickie often takes a back seat.

I think as well, because more often than not, I get up in the nights when William wakes, as Norms works driving trucks for a living and needs his sleep, when the opportunity knocks and its bed time, and William is sound asleep and we’ve had a lovely time together and the mood is just right…I am always so tired that I don’t think I would even get to the kissing stage without letting off a few snores. 

I do feel bad for him. Let’s be honest, men think about and want sex more than women (usually). But he is very understanding and he really is a good egg. And from what I’ve heard from fellow mums and friends, this drought will hopefully end, and the rainy season will start all over again. It’s hard to remember the times when we used to just have a quick fumble whenever the mood took us. Or what we were like when we were trying to conceive. That’s the ironic part, you spend all this time and effort having all this amazing sex, and then that goes straight out the window when you get pregnant and have the baby. Poor blokes, it must be a shock to the system. They don’t know whether they are coming or going. (It’s deffo not the first one in this household).

This post was really just a ramble, and also for any of you ladies who are possibly going through a sex evacuation like I am. YOU ARE NOT ALONE. We can get through this!!! I mean, we have been and are still going through a really massive culture, lifestyle, body, emotional and physical change in our lives. We need time for this all to calm the fuck down.

Hopefully one day we will all laugh about this, while at an Ann Summers party looking at little skimpy outfits and dildos, and not be crying into a glass of pinot grigio with our fannies closed up and dry as sandpaper.

Baby, Beauty, Friends, General, Parenting, Personal

An Open Letter to My Friends

Dear Friend, 

It’s me. Tara. Aka Mummy. 

I’m sorry I haven’t seen you in a while. I know you text me 4 weeks ago asking how things are and how William is doing, and that we needed to catch up soon. I did see it. I did want to reply. I really did. But these days, I barely get time to sneeze or go for a piss in peace. And by the time it gets to 9pm and the baby has only just gone down to sleep after me trying  since 7pm, all I want to do is eat something (But I usually dont) and go to bed myself. So please don’t be mad that I didn’t text back. I agree, we do need to catch up. I miss you too. 

I’m sorry I forgot to send you a birthday card. Or a Christmas card. They were written, and on the side ready to post/pop in to you. But the truth is, I can’t really “pop” anywhere these days. Gone are the days of just nipping out, as now it takes me an hour just to try and get a shower, amid all the crying, sicking, changing shitty nappies, cleaning up dribble from various areas of my hair, putting a dummy back in, finding said dummy that baby has spat out and managed to sit on, winding, sssh-ing, reassuring the baby that I haven’t abandoned them , that I’m merely washing the smell of baby shit and B.O. from my body, only to be a sweating mess again in 10 minutes after picking the baby back up to stop him from crying for him to show me the reason he was crying was in fact because he had trapped wind that turned into an acidic white vomit that is now all over my freshly soap and glory’ed skin. Excellent.

I’m also sorry I haven’t popped to see you after work because as well as how long it actually takes me to get out the house now with a small human, the amount of crap I have to bring with me for a small outing is actually unbelievable. I have a £60 bag, which is essentially the size of a weekend holdall bag, filled to the brim with so much shit, that it won’t zip up, and when strapped to the pram it makes the pram wonky and lean one way. All this crap just in case. Gone are the days of me leaving the house with my keys, phone, purse and perhaps a lip gloss and hair brush in a cute little Michael Kors bag. I don’t even use a handbag anymore.  I don’t need one. It’s not like I have time to put on my new Barry M lip gloss anyway. Plus, even if I did, within 3 minutes 45 seconds William would have smeared his little hand into my lips and subsequently into my hair and I will be basically a walking talking scarecrow with a baby attached to me hanging from my knotted but shiny and glittery hair in Barry M shade 678.

I’m sorry that you can’t pop here after work like we used to do. When we used to get chippy teas or naughty takeaways and sit and watch Corra Norra and laugh about Audrey Robert’s funny noises she makes or swoon over Danny Dyer and talk about all the rude things we’d do to him if we ever had half the chance. The truth is, I don’t even know if Audrey Roberts is still even in Corra Norra anymore, by the time I sit down after putting the baby to bed all the good telly is finished and I’m left with some weird fishing programme or QVC selling me a hoover or overpriced hand cream. The term “bath, bottle, bed” is followed as loosely as possible. It’s more of a “do whichever stops him crying and puts him to sleep” the fastest routine. So I sack it off and go to bed, to wait for the next time the small human beast will wake screaming at the top of his lungs like he is sitting in a pool of his own piss and up to his eyeballs in mustard poo, and hasn’t been fed for 45 days. (Obviously he isn’t any of these things).

I’m sorry as well that when we do meet up, I don’t have anything exciting  to tell you anymore.  No gossip from work.  No funny stories to tell you about how I bumped into so and so we used to go to school/college/on nights out with and she’s looking like God knows what now , or her new fella looks like someone from Shameless. Or how I saw this really cute outfit in New Look that I thought would look amazing on you. Or talk about what the Kardashians are up to this week and oh my God did you see Kim K in Heat magazine..? All I’ve got to talk about now is nappies, how many bottles of milk William has had that day and how many ounces he drinks, and how he cried all morning  and the only thing that would console him was me blowing raspberries on his feet. I’m sorry that this is boring for you. But literally, that’s all I have to say. Because that’s what my day consists of, day in, day out. 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Sleep, Feed, Change, Wind, Cuddle, Clean up, Play, Sing Row Row Row Your Boat, repeat. 100 thousand times over.

I’m sorry that I can’t go with you on that night out. I would of given anything to go out with you, get dressed up in something other than leggings covered in milk and spit, and a t-shirt that smells questionable under the arm pits. I would of loved to have been able to go out without carrying the contents of my house, not worrying about lip gloss being smeared into my hair, and sitting at a table that doesn’t need to have room for a pram. It would of been amazing to drink something other than cold tea, from a clean glass rather than a cup that has been used for over a week and not washed because you just simply haven’t got the time or the energy to stand and do dishes.

The truth is, since becoming a mother I have in fact turned into a bit of a shite friend. And for that I am sorry. But the truth is, I’m not sorry I’ve become a mother. 

Yes, I look back on the times when I could leave the house freely, carry my little bag around in the crook of my arm, smell clean and divine and have washed hair that’s nourished and conditioned and not stuck in some bobble and unbrushed for the 3rd day in a row, and feel a little bit sad. I do miss the life I had, when we could hang out whenever we wanted to, go have a drink willy-nilly and end up getting in at 1am wondering how the hell we managed to end up in a club on a Tuesday night?!

The truth is though i don’t miss the life, I miss you. However, being a mum is my priority now. The nappies, the milk, the gummy smiles and the belly laughs at me tickling under his arms. The 4am cuddles because he’s had a bad dream and only mum cuddles will do. This is the life I’ve got now, and I can’t imagine any different. 

It’s not that I don’t want to see you. It’s just that with all the other crap that’s going on, it’s hard to fit it all in. 

I am a mum. But I am still Tara. It’s just Tara has changed. But she does still love you. And I just wanted to let you know that even though we don’t see each other as often as I’d like or as you would like, I still care. I just can’t do a lot of the things I used to any more. My priority is now this tiny human I pushed out my vagina, and unfortunately all the other stuff has to wait. 

Please be patient with me, this is all new to me and I maybe haven’t got the whole social life-parenting-ratio figured out yet. I’m not doing it on purpose. And I’m certainly not pushing you away. It’s just life has now changed.  I enjoy nothing more than lying in bed staring at a tiny human I made, or singing The Wheels on the Bus to try and make my baby smile while holding a wet wipe over his little you know what so that he doesn’t piss everywhere while I change his nappy for the 50th time that morning.

But please know this. I’m always here, if you ever need me. And again, I’m sorry.

But if you ever need wet wipes, I’m the one you should call. I’ve got thousands of the fuckers upstairs.

T x

Baby, General, Personal

Mum Guilt and the Insta-Perfect Life

So if any of you follow me on social media, you will probably know that I try to be as “real” as possible. (Especially if you watch my Instagram videos where approximately 99.99999% of the time I am looking bedraggled and have hair greasier than McDonalds chip fryer).

So I thought I’d do a post about “mum guilt”. I feel it. DAILY. Maybe every time I leave him to cry when I need a shit? All the time. It’s an awful feeling.

I’m all for spreading love and trying to spread positivity but I was NOT prepared for how awful this mum guilt thing is! And it’s so difficult to not be hard on yourself, not compare yourself to others and not look wistfully at other people with their seemingly “perfect” babies sat on their knees giggling away while your wrestling your beast of a baby to get a burp up whilst he screams and kicks and scratches you with his nails which you really should of cut but it’s so bloody difficult to so you just left them. (Have you ever tried to cut a wriggly baby’s nails? It should be a task on I’m a celeb).

Which is why I also wanted to touch on social media and the affect I think it can have on your first steps into parenting – if you let it.

Social media is amazing. I mean without it, I wouldn’t be able to write this blog, and share it with whoever wants to read it. But it can also be very dark and also makes you put unnecessary pressure on yourself, make you compare yourselves to others, you make these friends and follow these people, some you might not even know, and yet you feel like you do know them. I know I have. You follow everything to do with their lives, seeing seemingly intimate snapshots of people’s lives and feeling privileged that you are able to share these moments with them. I won’t lie, I have met a couple of people from social media who I feel like I could call a friend, someone who I do ask for advice when William is playing up, or if I’ve seen something on their feed that I am interested in I have no issue with messaging them and I’d like to feel they didn’t mind me messaging them. (They may think I’m a complete fruitloop but hey ho I’ll be blissfully unaware for now). But that’s not to say that I still don’t look at these people and don’t feel a pang of jealousy.

Id be lying if i said I don’t compare myself to them. Or anybody, for that matter, whether I know them or not. When you see these pictures of their beautiful babies, all smiley and happy, or see statuses: “mama feels refreshed – baby slept through for the 4th night in a row  😍 #blessed.” It’s enough to make you feel a bit..well..low. Or sick. When you are sitting there, looking like a dogs dinner at 3am rocking your baby to sleep for the 100th time, because every time you put him down in his cot his eyes automatically ping wide open again, (yet he seems to fall asleep no problem in your arms – funny that), and scrolling through Instagram or Facebook, seeing all these “blessed” posts, mums with their make up flawless, wearing lovely outfits not covered in puke, hair washed and styled, not 6 days in to no washing and half a can of dry shampoo residue on your roots, babies seemingly beaming and being such a “happy, good baby”, and of course happy posts about how awake and refreshed they feel after a full 8 hours sleep. When you see these posts, and you are sat there, your baby crying in your arms for a reason that you cannot seem to find, and you feel your own eyes start to prickle with tears, or you catch sight (or in my case, smell) of yourself, with your dark grey circles and bags under your eyes, reminents of mascara you wore 3 days ago, hair in a bun that hasn’t been brushed that day, or the day before, and wearing the same clothes you’ve been in for 5 days and a questionable smell coming from your arm pits, you start to get the mum guilt, and start to compare yourself to these people. All sorts of questions go through your head. You drive yourself insane. 

Why can’t I be like her? Why is her baby sleeping through the night and mine isn’t? Why isn’t my baby making more babbling noises? Why isn’t my baby rolling over yet? Why can she get up and get dressed and put make up on and I don’t seem to have the time to? Why does their house always look so tidy? Why is her baby so good and mine cries all the time? Why doesn’t my baby take a bottle and be winded and go down to sleep within 30 minutes?

What am I doing wrong? Am I a bad mum? Why does my baby not love me like hers loves her? 

All these questions and thoughts go through your already exhausted brain. Most of them irrational. I mean of COURSE your baby loves you. I know William loves me. It’s just sometimes hard when you see all these photos of mummy’s with their little bambinos in ‘candid- ooh I didn’t realise you were taking a photo’ photos looking all slim and fashionable and effortless and natural, not to compare yourself to them.

The truth is, social media is a great smoke screen. You can share with people as much or as little as you want to. And you can choose to share the bad stuff or just show the lovely moments. I personally try to show all of it, the good days and the not so good days, but then when I look at my feed, I feel guilty. Why am I complaining so much? There are so many women who would give their right arm to be in my position, complaining about nappies and night feeds. Why am I being so ungrateful? Why aren’t I cherishing every moment, how dare I moan when this is what I had craved for? Is my baby really unhappy, why is he crying so much, why isn’t he like the babies on my Instagram feed, in their clean, not snot and sick covered, Ted Baker baby grows? What’s wrong with ME?!

I could go on. But I won’t.  You get the picture. The truth is, everyone out there is struggling and dealing with some kind of battle or shit in their own lives, that nobody else may even know about.  Just because these people post their seemingly easy perfect lives, it doesn’t mean that that’s the reality.  I bet you any money more often than not they are having just as bad as day as me, covered in 5 hour old milk sick and rocking their baby back and forth sssh-ing them and wondering what the fuck it’s actually crying for now. Every new parent has those days. It just might seem that they don’t, because they choose not to post it. Basically, this is just a little reminder for all you new parents out there (dad’s as well as mums – dad’s have it hard too), to try not to compare yourself to others based on what you may see on social media. It’s hard, I understand and as I’ve explained I’m guilty myself of doing just that. But rest assured, when your sat there, elbow deep in the greenest sloppiest shite you’ve ever seen, using 4.6 million wipes to clean your cherubs arse, back, arms, feet, anything else that the substance has managed to contaminate, just remember, someone, somewhere out there, is doing exactly the same, and wondering what on earth they did to deserve it.

If your having a particularly awful and rancid day, I have a few people I follow on Instagram that are going through the same, they have just had beautiful babies and they are SO SO real and tell it like it is. I’ll put their names below, if you need cheering up or are wondering “does anybody else’s baby do THIS” whilst googling some obscure baby related thing, go have a look at their pages and sure as hell you will find that they are going through the same thing, day in, day out, and they make light of it, and are there doing the same Instagram stories as I am, make up free and possibly a screeching baby in the background. 

@lifethroughemseyes

@_boss_mummy_

@v3kyc

@slimminglil 

@lifeasthree  

There are a few more I follow but these are the ladies pages I check every day, and even though I don’t know them, I feel like I do and just to see they are going through the same shit I go through it a day makes me feel a little less like I’m doing a bad job.

Now, mum guilt.  It’s not cool. But it happens. These lovely ladies above have all felt it I’m sure. It’s awful. Sometimes I wonder how I can feel so guilty about doing the simplest tasks. When your baby is crying and crying and crying, and your desperate for a shit, so you have to stop comforting them, lie them on a bed or on a playmat, then rush off before something sinister happens. Your sat there on the loo, your baby screaming blue bloody murder and you feel so guilty. I had this only 2 nights ago whilst trying to go for something other than a wee. Especially when they cry so much they go ultrasonic and do the SILENT CRY. When you hear them go quiet a wave of panic sets in. Are they ok? Why has he stopped crying? Has he choked on his own spit? Has someone come into my house and snatched him?  Has he fallen asleep? What if hes stopped breathing? Why won’t this shit hurry up, I swear I was desperate 5 seconds ago!!??

And so on and so forth. The same applies for other things that we used to be able to do without a care in the world. Going to the loo, having a shower, getting dressed, putting on make up. I don’t know about anyone else’s baby,but I MUST be in Williams eye line at all times. If not a nuclear state of emergency is declared and he screams and screams. He’s so clingy. Then you think to yourself “nope, I’m not having him being a clingy baby, he’ll just have to cry it out, he’s got to learn that I can’t be with him all the time”. Well it’s as if they sense your new found empowerment. So they scream more. Louder, higher, sqwuarkier, until their little faces are brighter than rudolphs nose on Christmas Eve and their faces are wet with tears, and they start coughing. Then you feel really guilty. Your letting your baby choke. How dare you. All for the sake of a shower, or putting your eyebrows on? Bad mummy. 

In reality they aren’t choking, they are just missing you , because 9 times out of 10 when you rush to them, sopping wet and hair dripping all over them with your shitty 2 in 1 palmolive peach shampoo, as soon as you pick them up, they stop crying and are all smiles. It’s what they do. But it doesn’t make it easy. Not at all. So whether you leave your baby to cry while you cleanse, tone and moisturise or literally splash some water under your pits and hope for the best, either way your not a bad mummy. Your a mother that is doing the best for you and your child. Any choice you make, is yours and you do what is best for yourself and for your baby. 

One instance where I felt really bad mum guilt was one Friday, I had had a really shitty day, William was ratty all day, teething, spitting  everywhere, getting a cold and just generally grizzly.  He wanted me and only me aaaalllllll day. I hadn’t eaten, as everytime I put him down in his bouncer chair or on his matt he would kick off to fuck. I hadn’t showered, I think I’d managed one ice cold cup of tea, and it had been none stop all day. He wouldn’t take his milk, cried when I tried to give him a dummy, cried because he was tired but wouldn’t nap, cried when I tried to make him nap by rocking him on my lap, cried when I picked him up, you get the jist. It was just one of those days. By the time it got to 7pm I was done. I ended up losing my rag. He starting whinging again and I ended up shouting at him to shut the fuck up. Which made him cry even more. I ended up leaving him on the rug in the living room crying and went into the kitchen and poured myself a massive glass of pinot grigio. And I sat on the kitchen floor and cried. And cried and cried. So there was me in one room and William in another balling our eyes out. After downing the wine, Williams crying turned into a whimper. I felt bad. I felt REALLY bad. I had just left him. Crying. Upset. In pain. Who knew? But I’d just left him. And thought about myself before him. How could I? 

So I got up off the floor, crawled through the rooms to him and scooped him up, promising him that I’d never lose my rag again and I was sorry for leaving him all alone. 

This was us on the kitchen floor. We had gone back in and sat there while I drank more wine. And cried a little bit more. 

Of course I hadn’t done anything wrong. He was just having one of those days. Babies have them. But it just so happened I had found it much harder this day. Lack of sleep, lack of food, lack of adult conversation..it all contributes to it. And let’s be honest, any mum who says they haven’t lost their rag or had to walk out the room and leave their baby crying for 5 minutes to calm their tits and not go completely insane is either a) lying or b) lying. Everyone has to take 5 minutes from time to time. But for some reason I just felt so guilty. I should be able to handle his tantrums and know what’s making him cry and soothe him. Surely I should. I’m his mum after all..but sometimes we just can’t do anything to help them, when you’ve changed them, fed them, winded them, played with them, rocked them, soothed them and they are still crying, sometimes you just have to ride it out until they get themselves together. But I felt so bad. “I bet other people don’t lose their shit like me” I was thinking.  “I bet so and so doesn’t sit on her kitchen floor crying into a warm glass of pinot grigio”. I posted an Instagram video story about it and the response I got was lovely. People saying they had also had moments like that themselves, not to be so hard on myself, etc etc. And really, they were right.

Because at the end of the day, parenting, being a mum (or a dad) for the first time is a new experience . We don’t know what we’re doing. We’re all just winging it, wondering how the fuck we got through another day without anything  going monumentally tits up. The time your baby is crying “the worst they ever have”, I’m  pretty sure  that the time before that was “the worst they ever have” cried. 

So this mum guilt thing, I need to remember, as do any of you reading this who is thinking “jesus that was me the other day” or just having a bad day right now, or has had a similar experience, we need to remember not to be so fucking hard on ourselves.  Yeah so we might be rocking 4 day old shit stained leggings and only eaten cold beans out of the tin for our breakfast 2 days in a row, and not look like the people in the magazines or Kim Kardashian in her slinky nude dresses and heels carrying her baby down the street with her hair flowing in the wind behind her, but we are doing the best we can, despite our circumstances, and yeah some days you cry into your beans and go to bed thinking it can’t get any worse, but then you wake up and your baby smiles at you, and is excited to see you, and you wonder what all the fuss was about.  

I mean, nothing beats a gummy baby smile, does it? And that’s the reason why we’re doing all this, isn’t it? For them.