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.