Ten reasons why baby’s first Christmas is a bit crap

Mummy's Writing Darling

A baby is a Christmas miracle in itself – and it’s an absolute joy to have a new addition to the family. But get your hopes up for an amazing “baby’s first Christmas” and you may be a tad disappointed. Why? Well…

1/ Everyone knows it’s perfectly acceptable to pop open the Cava before midday on Christmas day. But on baby’s first Christmas – suddenly it’s frowned upon to guzzle prosecco with your smoked salmon blinis at 10am because you’re now the designated “responsible adult ‘parent of a tiny person’ person”. Gah. They don’t even give you any points for your sober nine months previous.

2/ Your new baby is still at the stage where they look like a misshapen butternut squash weebling in their door bouncer – and let’s face it – though you’d like to imagine otherwise, they don’t have a fucking clue what’s going on and won’t do for probably another year.

3/ The only thing your baby is good for at this point is dressing up as novelty Christmas items. The retailers know this and will sell you an over priced Olaf outfit that you’ll only put on them for ten seconds while you take a dozen photos to upload to Facebook before Grandma pulls them out of it because they’re terrified it’ll ignite with the LED lights.

4/ They’re not much fun on the day. They’ll sit there like an undercooked stuffing ball in their Christmas tree outfit looking at you with the same disdain a dachshund would if you dressed them up as little bo peep on Halloween.

5/ You’ll waste money on shite tat for them they don’t need and don’t understand. They can’t even open the things. Next Christmas you’ll have to buy less because you’ve got no room to put the new crap because of all the overpriced “baby’s first Christmas” shite that you were duped into purchasing last year because you were so excited it was “baby’s first sodding Christmas”.

6/ Everything you used to decorate your home with or that you used to love is now considered a baby death trap device. Say goodbye to Christmas candles, tree lights, fancy glass baubles and say hello to the chore of vacuuming up bloody pine needles every two hours in case your baby inhales them up while he’s rolling about the floor getting caught up in tinsel and trying to eat the glitter off the wrapping paper. Who put the chocolate brazil nuts on the coffee table? Abort, abort.

7/ What’s that smell? Chestnuts roasting on an open fire? Freshly cooked Turkey? No, that there is the stench of baby’s first Christmas turd. And guess who’s changing it? You. Muggins. “No bread sauce for me actually Dad, on second thoughts”.

8/ Say goodbye to any presents for you from now on from parents and relatives. From now on you’ll hear the immortal words “Now Darling, we won’t be getting anything for you this Christmas – we’ll just be treating the baby / babies / kids – ok? I mean, you don’t really need anything now do you?” Er… yes. We need wine. More wine than ever. I also need oven gloves, a year’s supply of Cillit Bang and, it appears, a nose hair trimmer. What. The. Hell?

9/ The day will be long. Like every other day. And you can’t even enjoy the late night Christmas telly. You’ll be in bed by 7pm, annoyingly sober and then up at 11.45pm, 1.27am, 2.16am and so on. Merry Christmas.

10/ You’ve now got to gear yourself up for “baby’s first New Years” which may well involve tears, calpol, colic and not counting in the new year pissed again for eighteen years.

In a couple of years of course they’ll start to understand Santa – and then it’ll be pure magic. But until then – don’t believe the hype. And you can stick your elf on the shelf up onto the shelf in your arse.

Ho. Ho. Ho. Merry Christmas.

 

 

The Stay at Home Mum Christmas Party

stay at home mum christmas party

It’s Christmas time. There’s no need to be afraid. At Christmas time – the workers of the world get all giddy.

It’s a festive Salted Caramel coffee on the way in to the office. And look at Doreen! She’s rocking her Christmas tree light up dangly earrings!

And Stan’s got his Christmas bauble jumper on – the maverick. The canteen are doing mulled wine (one glass mind) and mince pie lattices. Look at all those pigs in blankets. They’ve put tinsel around the fire exits!

The halls have been buzzing since November with the count down to the Christmas break. The office is filled with the thrill of secret santa and you’re off to get inappropriately pissed at the Christmas lunch (four courses / steak house).

And then they’re off their heads practically elated typing their “out of office” email “back next year” fuckers.

Then there’s a Christmas party with them all linking arms wailing out “Fairy tale of New York”. Christmas hats on. The boss snogging Pauline in the third loo from the left. His wife won’t be happy.

And here we are – the stay at home parent.

“Are you ready for Christmas?” they ask us.

Christmas? It’s Christmas? What is the actual date today?

“Have you done your shopping?” No.

“Are you excited about your time off?” What time off?

There ain’t no point in wearing my Rudolph antlers and snowball earrings – no one is impressed here.

There’s no festive canteen treats – I am the canteen. And you’ll get what we’ve got in – beans and egg from now till Tuesday.

There’s no excited countdown to a “holiday” or break and when the other half puts on his “out of office” you think oh God – they’re home for how long? There’s going to be fights – and one more fucking person to hoover around.

There ain’t no secret Santa. You’re on your tod. And the only surprise parcel you’re gonna get is poop.

There’s no lunch, no party – none of that feeling – that ecstatic feeling of “It’s Chriiiissstttmassssss“.

Other half arrives home, rosy cheeked, party hat lop sided on their head, they’re wearing Doreen’s Christmas tree earrings … on their arse – “I’m home for Christmas love! You ok?”

“Muh” you snarl. “The eldest is constipated and the youngest has shit all up the door bouncer. Merry Christmas.”

Stay at home parents. Really – Do they know it’s Christmas time at all?

 

 

 

 

I am the back in the kitchen

I am the back in the kitchen

I am the back in the kitchen 

My mother was always in the kitchen

peeling potatoes

making gravy

boiling vegetables

washing up

cleaning up

ironing shirts

me stood

knee high

staring at her back

how earth shattering it is

the dawning realisation

that now

I am the back in the kitchen

not ignoring

you my darlings

and she wasn’t peeling potatoes

nothing so minor

she was caring

providing

feeding

keeping our home

a home

I am the back in the kitchen

now I understand

why it was so turned from me

and appreciate

that back

so much more

not ignoring

you my darlings

 

Farewell my baby years

Mummy's Writing Darling

I have a niggling feeling

now these years are drawing to a close

I should have counted every one of your lashes

and felt the softness between your toes

I should have spent less time eye-rolling

when you’d never settle in the night

spent those hours staring at your shoulders

in the silence, by candlelight

I should have done less complaining

about the mess around our home

left the unimportant chores

to trace wrinkles around new bones

I should have smelt the skin behind your ears

enjoyed hours stroking tiny heels

bottled the sound of your innocence

stopped the time turning wheels

I should have been present in every second

not sighed relief when you slept

I should have cradled your head when it fit in my palm

tasted every tear that you wept

I should have spent more time bare

and felt your flesh against mine

Oh my precious last born

becoming more precious than the first time

It seems it’s my turn to be the baby

As I say farewell to these baby years

you’ve slipped through my fingers

and I can not see you, my babies, for all my tears.

 

 

 

 

 

Tiny New Toes: Antenatal Depression

Mummy's Writing Darling

Tiny New Toes, opening up about antenatal depression and the Seraphine Mum’s Voice Awards for Tommy’s.

 

The Seraphine  Mum’s Voice Awards for Tommy’s

Writing about the hilarity of pregnancy and parenting comes very easily to me and 90% of what I write is intended to make people laugh. However, during my second pregnancy earlier this year it became increasingly difficult to find the funny side.

No one was more surprised than me to find out I was suffering with antenatal depression.

Though I had heard lots about post natal depression – antenatal depression was not something I had heard about or foreseen. And it suddenly seemed impossible not to write about it.

I wrote a post called How to cope with antenatal depression and another about my birth trauma – which, through talking to a specialist midwife support officer, I realised was linked to my depression.

I wrote a post for Mothercare on the subject called “you’re supposed to” about the expectation that being pregnant will be the happiest time of your life.  But the best response I got was after I wrote a poem about my feelings : Tiny New Toes”.

Through these posts I connected with Tommy’s – the baby charity and also took part in their Talk to someone campaign.

Writing about my feelings so honestly was terrifying – especially without my usual jokes and punchlines – but I’m very glad I did.

I was overwhelmed to find out this week that I have been longlisted for the Tommy’s Mum’s Voice award sponsored by Seraphine.

If you have enjoyed my writing or anything I have written has helped you, you can help me get shortlisted for the Seraphine Mum’s voice award at the Tommy’s awards :

please email mumsvoice@tommys.org with Mummy’s Writing Darling in the subject title and a few words about why I should be shortlisted.

Thank you – and remember to keep on talking.

 

Tiny New Toes

Depression came a’drummin on my door.
She’s no stranger. I’ve seen her before.
I asked her in for a spot of tea,
she bounced my toddler on her knee.

you can stay for one,” I politely pressed
but I’m afraid you’ve got the wrong address,
there’s far more than cake on my expanding plate,
and I’m pretty certain you’ve got the wrong date

My two year old keeps me on my toes
and I’ve exciting news, everyone knows
makes you bundle with joy, bloom, glow, shine
we’re having a baby! In four months’ time.

we tried for this, the best part of a year
so I’m pretty certain this is a time for cheer!
our second miracle is on its way
so as I said, you truly can’t stay.”

She put down her cup and shook her head
“If that’s what you think, you’ve been misled,
I’ve a blatant disregard for all of the facts
frankly my love, I don’t give a rats

Baby or no baby, I’m here to stay
Spread the word mamma, I’m wired that way.”

Now as I sit in the dark, the dark sits in me
and I weep, as I rock my toddler on my knee

when the house is still, I wonder at it all
as tiny new toes come tapping on my inside wall.