Oh I was going to launch into a blow-by-blow account of a certain humiliation today, but have decided against it. Why reveal my failures to the world? I may wait until I find it funny. Which may never happen. Actually, nothing is funny at the moment, because I have a sore back. I hesitate to say ‘bad back’ because that only serves to make me sound very middle-thirties and I like to think of myself as very fresh and young and girlish and 25-esque. But sore it is, due to Incorrect Baby-Handling. You would think I would have gotten a handle on this by now, but no. You have a baby, they give you pamphlets, you think you should probably read them, so you tuck them away somewhere, then you throw them out when the charade is up and you acknowledge to yourself that Pilates for New Mummies and Don’t Hit Your Baby and You and Your Pelvic Floor and How to Put Your Baby Into His/Her Cot Without Giving Yourself a Bad Back were never going to top the reading priority list when you subscribe to Vogue and Elle and so sadly they are put into the recycling bin. And slowly everything the pamphlets were alluding to, or warning you against, or were begging you for the Love of God to take notice of, come true and you feel a little bit DUMBASS. And, quite sore in the lower back. And your sense of humour disappears and you cannot tolerate your children.
Like yesterday. Ah yes, 6:10am on a Thursday morning. Everyone is asleep, because that is the Natural Order of Things as Decreed by God and Nature. Then that bloody Custard comes tearing out of the boy’s room, one flat foot slapping loudly onto the wooden floor after another, banging into the washing piles and skidding over trains and bursts open our door, waking the baby, sidling up to my bedside table, drinking my water, dropping my earplugs into the lipbalm pot, throwing his stinky blanket onto my face and then asking for some ice cream. The other two wake, come crossly in, ask to hop into bed with us, lying still for at least two and a quarter minutes until Barnaby says “Noah is touching my elbow” which naturally leads them all to kick, cry and wrestle. Out we all go, into the living room, where they hoover up the last of our previous night’s tea-and-biscuity remains and assume their positions perched at the end of the couch, close enough to the plasma screen to count the pixels, suck thumbs, and begin selling their little souls to Tom & Jerry.
Then we had breakfast. This should have been a simple meal, as we go through the same thing every day, but to keep it fresh, they like to mix it up a bit for me. So it went a little bit like this:
Barnaby: When he says “I want a boiled egg, chopped up on toast with no butter”, it transpires he actually means he is horrified by eggs, and will push aside the plate when the chopped up boiled egg on unbuttered toast arrives and ask for weetbix and jam toast instead.
Noah: “I want chocolate toast and a movie about Strawberry Shortcake”. This means that all foodstuffs will be refused and/or ignored until three minutes before we have to leave for nursery. At this point, he asks for peanut butter, milk, cereal and grapes. And decides to take all his clothes off and goes to the loo.
Custard: “Egg sick” . This means that although he is allergic to eggs, and he has been told repeatedly that eggs will make him sick, he asks for them every morning, and hovers dangerously around any egg left unattended.
Mornings are so horrible here. School holidays + mornings + sore back + Mysterious Humiliation = more horribleness than I can bear. I need my mother.