True colours (and fishy fingers.)
I am sitting in the Trafford Centre (yes, yes, I am here again!) with the love of my life.
He is currently, noisily munching his way through a Harry Ramsdens large cod piece (Seriously fish girl. That joke is not appropriate!) That I had been looking forward to all week.
As he is the love of my life, and we are still in the honeymoon period (yeah right), I have sacrificed my buttery, battery treat of the week (yeah right) and relinquished it after much grabbing, shouting and pleading (on his part) and much attempted ignorance, forced persistence with the puree and aeroplane attempted whirring actions (on my part) to no avail.
He is chewing with his mouth open, smacking his lips together and babbling innocently about nothing. He has mushy pea on his eyebrow. Every now and then he throws himself backwards, flings a piece of fish in the air and shouts ‘YAYAYAYAYAYA.’ He loves dinner time. He loves his food.
He is definitely my son.
As I watch him wrap his perfect little chubby fingers around one of my chips, I start to slurp on his carrot and potato puree. What? I made it so it is obviously nutritious and delicious and I am STARVING!! (Look, I know the jar says Hipp on it ok? But it’s a recycled jar ok? I would never feed him food from a jar. Ever. I am doing my best ok? I was up all night peeling eggs, or something similar, ok? Leave me alone…. STOP STARING AT THE JAR!!)
My happy, fish sucking angel, asks me in the way only he can (MAMAMADADADAAADADA OO OO OOO BLAAAA) to pass him his sippy cup, which i do obligingly.
He struggles at first, and i stop myself from jumping to help. Every old person I have ever met has told me i shouldn’t jump to help him all the time, or he will never learn anything himself.
After a couple of near misses, (and a quick tilt from me… Who me? *looks to ceiling and whistles*) he manages a noisy slurp and gulp marvellously. He then proceeds to SLAM the cup down on the table, thanks me in the only way he knows how (DADAYEEEEEEMAMAMAMAMAMAMAMAMA!!) And lets out the mother of all burps. (I swear, sometimes I am in awe of the multitude and sheer volume of the sounds this child effortlessly produces. He is quite literally, a living, breathing, laughing whoopee cushion…..Not that i sit on him! Well not on purpose anyway…)
It is at this juncture during our happy little meal that I look up and my eye catches on two women sat feeding their little girls the perfect tidy little mouthfuls of puree from the perfect tidy little Tupperware containers. Both baby girls are happy, content and smiling. Both women, however, are watching me and Addison with an air of disgust. (Did i say air of disgust? Their mouths are hanging open aghast and they are confidently and vehemently shaking their heads in my direction.)
‘Is there a problem?’ I ask somewhat timidly. (Which i know isn’t like me, but today is a bad day. Today I have done well to get out of bed. Today my happy little boy is all that is keeping me going. Please don’t judge me today, I plead internally. Please don’t judge me today.)
‘How old is he?’ Perfect mother type 1 asks, while shooting appalled looks between perfect mother type 2 (for back up. They hunt in packs the perfect mother types.) And little Addison, who for good measure, now has his fishy finger shoved firmly up his nose. (Yes thanks for that Woo!)
‘He is sixty six on Sunday’ i reply calmly ‘He looks young for his age, don’t you think?’ I smile back, willing her to laugh. Willing her not to tell me I am a terrible mother, willing her not to judge me, not today. Today is a treat for Addison and me. We are having a lovely day. I am out of bed and managing to smile. Please not today. Not today ok? Not today.
‘Disgusting’ she spits before turning her head, muttering something to perfect mother type 2, who looks directly at Addison, then me, nods her agreement and turns back to her pureed gloop and perfect and very cute, CLEAN, little girl.
‘BABABABAHAHAHAMAMAMAMAMAMA.’ Addison doesn’t have a clue why mummy is packing up the contents of the table with shaking hands.
‘YAYAYAYAMAMAMAMAMAMAMAMAMA’ Addison doesn’t understand why mummy has tears running down her face, all of a sudden.
‘MAMAMAMAMAMABAHAHAHADADADA’ Addison has finished his fish and wants to go and play in the ball pool.
‘AAAA?’ Addison doesn’t understand why his mummy is pulling funny red faces and taking us outside instead.
Addison was so happy, having a lovely day with mummy.
‘DADADADAMAMAMAMAMAMAMA’ What’s wrong mummy?
Last week I sat down to write a post about being a bad mummy. I had started or become involved with a tongue in cheek club on Twitter called the Bad mummy club. It was a club for mummy’s who were sick of the very real judgement out there about such trivial things like feeding our loved ones from jars and not being able to breast feed. It was a club I felt hugely part of.
Every day I felt guilty.
- My son watches TV in the morning (Ahem, and sometimes in the afternoon too!)
- My son sometimes eats from jars (he isn’t a jar licker, i feel i should add, i feed him with a spoon , from a jar! But you know I do baby led weaning too. GASP! PUT THE SPOON DOWN!)
- My son sometimes doesn’t have a bath for 2 days. (He hates the water, screams blue murder. He gets so upset sometimes he makes himself sick. He is getting better, but yes, i will admit. On occasion i will avoid the bathroom for a couple of days!)
- My son sometimes puts the dogs tail in his mouth (doodle has been sterilised it’s ok.)
- My son once had a fish from the chippy. (And i let two complete strangers ruin our day and make me cry.)
- My son sleeps in our room with us still (He is 10 months, not 66. Although if i have my way…JOKE! I mean, if he wants to sleep in my room until he is…. no, ok no. That’s wrong. But until he is 10, that’s ok isn’t it? No? *Drags feet toward bedroom to move cotbed* *swears a little*)
- My son likes to be rocked to sleep. (MAY, and there are no definates here, but this MAY be why my back is buggered. No definates. He likes me to stand up. What?! I will stop before he’s big enough to pick me up ok?? *reaches for back brace*)
- Sometimes we co-sleep (GASP! GASPPP! GASP!)
- Sometimes I swear and he hears me. (I dare you to stand full force on an upturned plug in a darkened room and not swear. Go on, try it. You swear before you even realise you have said anything don’t you? Well? Don’t you? Exactly.)
- Sometimes I put him in the car during the day and drive around to help him nap. (Look, it is a total coincidence that the new drive-thru Starbucks is on route. Total coincidence.)
- My son has no real routine. (Unless you count which programme he falls asleep after and which programme he eats after…ahem. Not every day! On Fridays he falls asleep after rhythm time! And you know, we play too. But after playing we watch telly. You judging me? I honestly don’t care.)
As well as suffering with Post natal depression I have beaten myself up pretty badly about the above, for long enough.
But no more.
You hear me perfect mother types?
This week has taught me I am an amazing mother. Yes. I really am. (Amazing and modest!)
I love my son more than life itself, and if it were to save his perfect little life, i wouldn’t think twice about laying down in front of a bus, or taking a bullet for him, and so would the Irish one.
- I have held him while he emptied his bowels all over me. (I swear the male nurse was flirty up until this point. He retreated quickly and laughingly said ‘oh god. He isn’t well is he?’ REALLY? REALLY? GET ME A BLOODY DOCTOR NOW YOU FRIGGING IDIOT!! (He was a minger too! The cheek!)
- I have kissed his forehead through the mother of all fevers. (If it’s not one thing it’s your mother.) I have rocked him, and sang to him, cried over him and sat in a plastic back breaker chair with him for 24 hours. (They should put those chairs in the jungle. Those celeb types’d be screaming ‘get me out of here’ in minutes!)
- I have prayed. Yes me. I prayed. (Er, hi god, it’s me Lexy. Yes, i know it’s been a while but er, can you make my son better please? I will wash up for a year…and shave (yes I know, my legs are indecent), and will love honour and obey too, if i have to.)
- I have argued with doctors, (Meredith Grey eat your heart out luv.) and have been right! Mummy knows best.
- I have argued with doctors. (Christina Wang don’t have nothing on me!) and have been 100% wrong! Mummy knows when to shut up and be humble.
- I have stayed awake and whispered stories and songs and memories to my best friend and boy who holds my heart in his hand, for over 48 hours, just so he knew I was there.
- I stayed calm when his temperature hit the 39+ mark. (If by calm you mean hysterical.)
- I stayed in control when his eyes went funny. (If by in control you mean shouting HELP!! HELP!! HELP!! MY SONS EYES ARE FUNNY, MY SONS EYES ARE FUNNY! At top volumes.)
- I have brought him home and held him, watched him, and slept only when I was confident he was breathing deeply enough. (Collapsed in the kitchen more like.)
- I have been a mummy. (I put this as a bullet point as it sounded too up myself to write it without it. Also, you know, i was a mummy before….)
I will take this opportunity to thank the Irish one for all his help. He truly is a wonderful daddy. He was very poorly too and when it finally got me, he took over and looked after both of us. Thankyou darling. (If you sense gritted teeth here, it is only because i had to relinquish control and wasnt happy….honest.)
Someone very wise once told me.
‘Giving birth doesn’t make you a mummy, it makes you a mother. You have to earn the title mummy.’
Well this week I feel I have earned my mummy badge. (In all honesty I think I earnt this badge with my stitches but you know, whatever…)
My son is on the mend.
We did it together, my son and me.
His first mouthful of recovery food?
He chose a chip.
And I cried while he ate it. He is like me, after all.
Chips are the answer to everything.
Bad mummy club? I am sorry I won’t be able to attend any more.
(Don’t hold me to that. This high may wear off shortly…and besides, i’ll miss you all too much!!)
Bring on the perfect mother types! I am simply itching to throw some fish! (Mature? Nope. Totally worth it for the looks on thier smug faces? Yup.)
My son is HAPPY, LOVED and HEALTHY.
And Nothing else matters.
I see that now.
He is sat in a noodle box playing with a piece of pizza. What of it?
I would also like to take this moment to extend a great BIG HUGE THANKYOU AND YOU ARE WONDERFUL TO MISS @theboyandme for some wonderful advice. She writes a beautiful, funny, inspiring and truly hilarious blog over at www.theboyandme.co.uk – please go visit. She is wonderful. The blog has everything! 365, listography, reviews and some cracking stories. If you havent read ‘Things they don’t tell you…’ you are missing out. It is HILARIOUS. Miss boy and me has the ability to both make me cry and howl with laughter with her stories. I have won some wonderful cards over there and visit regulaly for tales of the unexpected with the boy. I would love it if you would too. (And you would end up loving it too! and her!)
Addison is lucky. I am lucky. I appreciate every day. We are both healthy and loved.
Unfortunately over 8 million children under five die needlessly every year.
You can help keep their dreams alive at www.savethechildren.org.uk
I don’t usually do this kind of thing.
But today I pledged.
Because we are the lucky ones.
Don’t worry, I won’t judge if you don’t.
I just wanted to put it out there. I hope you don’t judge me for being cheesy and doing that.
Ps – Wonder woman? Bring it on…