Thursday, March 31, 2005

You are getting sleepy!

OK, IT'S back to the drawing board for me and my quest to become the body beautiful. After "helping" my son to eat his Easter Eggs (it's a mother's duty, surely) I have noticed a distinct
And while watching GMTV as I got dressed for work and seeing Victoria Beckham ponce about in her size six jeans about five minutes after giving birth, I feel my heart sink further (It's sinking only stopped when it reached the constrictions of my tightening waistband).
Okay, I accept that people generally put on weight when they get pregnant. They say it takes nine months to put on, so we should allow ourselves nine months to get it off, but at the rate I'm going it's likely to take nine years instead.
Of course I'm aware Victoria Beckham is far from the typical woman. Apparently her secret to being such a yummy mummy is getting into the gym and following a strict diet under the advisement of a personal trainer. There aren't many of us out there who can manage to do that. Getting five minutes to pee in peace without a baby pawing at your trouser legs is tough enough, never mind an hour for pilates or some other such trendy exercise programme.
And while I'll admit my job is not the most physically demanding in the world, it is tiring nonetheless. When I get home I rarely feel like doing my best Jane Fonda impressions in the front room and instead crave the warmth of my bed and a good book. (The Bad Mother's Handbook being my somewhat appropriate current page turner).
For the record, I have tired really hard to lose weight since giving birth last February. In the immediate weeks after my son's arrival I tried the "Physically Too Tired To Eat" diet. While in the first instance I did lose weight, I also developed the appearance of probably the most anaemic woman on the planet, prompting calls by my midwife to eat rubbish, any rubbish, as long as it built me up.
This I duly did and while my iron stores were duly replenished, I was "built up" in many other ways too. At this stage people looked at me funny to see me pushing an infant in a pram while clearly looking ready to drop number two at a mere moment's notice.
Deciding the time was right to be sensible about the whole thing I rejoined the Rosemary Conley Diet and Fitness Club, where I had much success with weightloss before getting pregnant and undoing all the good work.
Lumping about my stretch-marked tummy to some sultry salsa tunes was a little disheartening. Before becoming a mum I was a regular on the salsa dance scene so to realise that I had lost any trace of grace and style in a mere nine months was shock to the system and a bigger shock to my fragile ego. I had definitely become more Christine Hamilton than Christina Aguilera and believe me that is not a good look to bring to anyone's dance floor.
When the baby-sitters dried up just two weeks into my return to class, I was somewhat relieved. Perhaps I just wasn't ready to change my life.
But three months later and still a shocking 2 sizes bigger on my bottom half than before having my baby, I took action again. Having previously declared WeightWatchers to be the spawn of Satan I relented and signed up online (no need for a baby-sitter, you see!).
I admit it, like Rosemary Conley, works when you have the will power. But willpower only seems to exist in my world in three week bursts; and then I falter, have a couple of drinks and the pizza comes calling.
So now, I'm trying a more holistic approach and that is self hypnosis. I've bought the new Paul McKenna book that everyone seems to be raving about and I'm trying to re-educate my body into not craving caramel squares or sausage rolls and instead looking a nice piece of lettuce or some seeds and pulses and thinking "Yummy!"
Basically, while there is no one to swing a watch in front of my face, I'm reading about how to cope with my comfort eating and little techniques to help take those nasty cravings away.

The thing with Paul McKenna though is that he says its okay to have a Mars Bar if you really want one. If you fancy fish and chips then, he says, you must listen to your body and go for it.
My only concern is that, lately, all my body seems to want to crave is chips and Mars Bars. Surely it's not humanly possible to lose weight by following your (in my case sizeable) gut?
What's nice about Mr. McKenna is that you get to follow his programme by lying in bed of an evening listening to his dulcet tones seep into your brain as you drift off to dreamland. There is not a dodgy salsa move in sight and a fairly minimal risk of you needing the cardiac ambulance by the end of it.
So whether or not it will work, well that is anyone's guess. But it has to be worth a try? After all summer is, allegedly, on the way and the excuse of "I've just had a baby" is running anorexically thin.
So wish me luck (once again!) and please can someone tell me if I start acting strangely following any of my hypnotic episodes.

Sunday, March 27, 2005

Sunny days, everything's A OK..... Posted by Hello

I'm a mammy...not yet a woman!

First of all, dreadfully sorry to post lyrics vaguely resembling that of Britney Spears but after a wee run in with my parents and sister today I'm starting to wonder if anyone out there actually believes I'm a grown adult?

I'm 28 years old and have been married for four years. I have a mortgage, a car (admittedly not a full licence yet) and a bouncing baby boy. I work in a semi-respectable profession and I have degrees coming out of my ears...but sometimes in the company of those I love dearest I am still reduced to feeling like an errant three year old.

Today me and the wee man visited my parents. They live but a few short minutes away, over a muddy field I lovingly refer to as the Crick (See Calamity Jane if you dont get the reference). Having spent the morning in uber-mammy mode (the zombying effects of my anti-depressants seemingly starting to wear off thanks to me forgetting to take them for three days) cooking, cleaning and generally being fecking fabulous, I was feeling rather proud of myself in a "proper grown-up" stylie.

So on we go to my mums. There I play with Joseph on the floor and suddenly get the feeling that my beloved parents and siblings see me not as a mammy playing with her child, but as an oversized child herself playing with her wee friend.

I was told to watch out for the baby, don't let him near this, don't leave him there etc etc. Deep breathing and counting to 100 soon stopped working I can tell you! Things onyl got worse when my (younger!) sister told me to stop acting the eejit. (She being a mammy of three-years-experience).

I felt dejected and emotional and proving myself to be every bit the child they thought I was I put the wee man back in his Winnie The Pooh car and made a dramatic departure...pushing the car at lightening speed through the crick. (Those things are not made for off road travel, I can tell you).

We got home and I let the baby throw water round himself and play and scream at the top of his lungs, and then I switched the sensible mammy hat on again and cuddled him, bathed him, put him to bed and went downstairs to freeze the specially prepared bolognaise I cooked with own fair hands.

I'm sure it's hard for my parents to accept me as a parent me I know what a shock to the system it is to accept the parent status myself, but I am doing my very best and all the time trying to wean off the evil anti-depressants.

Maybe that is why I'm a little paranoid and sensitive??

(Oh and as an afterthought...have you ever noticed how easy it is to eat your child's entire Easter Egg without even tasting it???)

Saturday night on the computer....

Not quite as exciting as Saturday night at the movies, but you get my drift.

At the moment the wee man is sleeping, bum in the air, face slobbering on his pillow. The big man of the house is watching some nonsense on Channel 5 and here I am, poised at the computer at 10.19pm on a Saturday night.

Already tonight I've received two invites to go out, but washing needed to be done and the thought of dealing with mad baby with a hangover just somehow doesn't appeal.

I fear I may be getting old before my time. I always promised myself that becoming a mum would not change who I was. That person was a salsa dancing freakette who loved to boogie...the sad reality is I cant remember the last time I danced without a baby on my hip.

Ususally a Saturday night would have seen me dressed in some sparkly top with impossibly high heels dancing to the latest "toons"...but here I am; hair scraped back, trackie bottoms on, squashed banana somewhere, at least 2 stone overweight (for two read four) and feeling slightly the worse for wear after two glasses of wine.

I am becoming the stereotypical sad-case mammy. Before you know it I will be downing bottles of gin in front of Phil and Fern and thinking it would actually be a good idea to appear on the Trisha show.

Of course I could go and ravish himself...but that would involve a quick stop off at the bathroom to shave my stubbly legs.....

Whoever wrote about "Hot Mamas" was full of pish!

Saturday, March 26, 2005

Smiley Joseph, reaching for bubbles. Look at those teethypegs! Posted by Hello

Friday, March 25, 2005

Stupid o'clock in the morning...

AS I write it's 5.08am.

The wee man is sleeping soundly, after a rather unfortunate constipation/ poo the size of a boulder incident and DH is snoring after a rather more fortunate four pints of beer incident.

I am however awake, and spraying febreeze around the house in a very strange fashion, having had an unsuccessful hunt for chocolate around the house and only a rather suspect Drambuie Liquer (no thanking you very much).

Funny thing about motherhood is that you get tired....VERY tired and yet if your brain switches into gear for even two minutes during the night that's it, you are awake and it's a bugger trying to get back to the land of nod.

And of course, you can't take Nytol with a baby in the house. There is no way himself would wake to the sound of our child crying, so I think it has actually been a full 14 months since I last had a deep sleep.

I suppose I could try counting sheep and not worrying about EVERYTHING, from how fast the wee man is growing up to the highly annoying cost of childcare and car insurance in my area; to the fact that my new haircut looks like pants unless I actually get a hairdresser round every morning with her super straighteners to fix it. (Think mullet central)

Anyway, with the time now 5.14am...and with the Febreezing done and the smell of poo but a faint memory....I'm off to try and sleep. Wish me luck!

Thursday, March 24, 2005

Me and the wee man! He was just seven days old. I was still clearly insane (Have you seen that fur creation around my neck?) Posted by Hello

Things to do before I am 30....

IT’S 15 months and 10 days until I reach the big 3-0. While that is admittedly a decent enough distance away, and in the words of my dear daddy I could well be dead and buried by then, I have started to evaluate my contribution to the planet so far and wonder if I’ve achieved all that I would have hoped to by this milestone.

When I was still just a bit of a wain at about 16, myself and one of my best friends sat and talked about what the future would hold. Somewhere, scribbled on the back of an old Thornhill homework diary are the thoughts she had for my future.

There she scribbled that by 30 I would be married to a man called Ian (well himself’s middle name is Ian, so not far off), dress in glamorous power suits with a figure to envy (erm, nope! Unless tracksuit bottoms are the latest style in power suit and plus sizes are suddenly enviable), have the requisite 2.4 children (again, nope as the 1.0 child that I have is enough to keep me on my toes) and have a glowing mane of blonde hair (roots desperately needing done as we speak).

She guessed I would be a stylish columnist and while I don’t want to take away from what I write here on this page, it is unfortunately not the biggest part of my working week, as so much else has to take priority in a busy newsroom. I’m hardly Carrie Bradshaw, but then I’ve always had a serious problem with her character anyway. Being able to afford all those expensive shoes on the money from just one column a week? Give me a break! I struggle to afford the latest looks in Barratts!

For myself I guessed that I would have come a little further than I have now. I would have imagined in my idealistic youth that I would have got my Doctorate in Philosophy by now, and maybe even had my first novel published to undoubted critical acclaim.

When it comes to a doctorate, a pathological fear of learning which was instilled in me while studying for my Masters Degree was enough to put me off that notion for life; and when it comes to my writing, the furthest I’ve gotten is a couple of exceptionally dodgy poems published in local anthologies when I was about 17. Teenage angst doth not make for good poetry, and while I still have the books hidden away somewhere I would rather pull out my own eye balls, smear them in marmite and eat them than show them to anyone else. My reputation may not be fantabulous, but I see no need to destroy it altogether.

So I’m throwing away the old homework diary, and my friend’s premonitions, and starting to think realistically about what I can achieve in next 15 months and 10 days.

Much as the plan was to have 2.4 children by then, I really don’t think 1.4 children are going to materialise between now and June of next year. I’m having too much fun with number one to jeopardise it just yet with the whole projectile vomiting/ morning sickness/ psychopathic hormonal freak scenario again.

I doubt muchly my boss is going to start paying me a small fortune just to write this column so that I can spend the rest of my life swanning around with my glamorous friends in nice shoes; so it’s up to me to set slightly different goals for the months to come.

I had thought at one stage that doing something truly wild would be the best way to ring in a new decade. I considered bungee jumping, but was afraid that the shadow of my ass falling from a great height could result in a solar eclipse which could have catastrophic effects on the world’s eco-structure.

I considered a belly button piercing, my sister-in-law had hers pierced following baby number two. She doesn’t show it off in anyway, it’s just there to remind her that she is not a frumpy over 30 mummy. But, the problem I have is that I don’t think I’ve seen my belly button in about six months. It is there somewhere, among the spare tyres but I could well need an expedition of intrepid explorers to find it before the body piercing lady gets to work.

Similarly, a tattoo was on my mind. But as a dear friend subsequently told me she would rather give birth again without any pain-relief than endure the agony of a tattoo, I’ve decided against it.

Instead I’ll aim for what I can do. For example last week I took a leap of faith and made my first radio appearance, talking on the Mark Patterson show about Mothers Day. With not a Valium nor a glass of Sauvignon Blanc to calm my wee nerves, I stuttered and muttered my way through a panel discussion. It left me a shaking wreck, but hey it was something new, something different and something to strike off the list of things to do before I’m 30! I may even do it again (if they ask me!).

And even if they don’t, I have enough to be going on with. I have to make an appointment to have my mousy hair restored to its dyed-blonde glory and promise faithfully that I will maintain it.

I will try my best to obtain a figure that at least some people can envy and while the poetry remains a part of me I’d rather not remember, I’ll try to start the old Microsoft Word whirring the evening and start writing something in the vain hope it will make me famous, or at least infamous.

And if all else fails, I’ll simply plan the biggest party imaginable for next June and blot the whole thing out with a bottle of finest Champagne!


And the obvious reason is because of the season....

SPRING IS a dangerous season for me as I tend to go a little crazy. You see I love spring. Of all seasons, it is my most favourite and simply it’s because everything looks so much better when you wake up in the morning and the sun is shining.

The last few days of blissful sunshine have had me in my element. Having a week’s holiday from work means that me and the wee man have been able to get out and about, him ensconced in his new Winnie The Pooh (or Winnie Ma Pooh, as my niece calls it) car and me looking every bit the proud mammy pushing him along.

My other half and myself have gone for long drives to the likes of Kinnego Bay and I swear I’ve had a wee bit of sunburn. Couple all that with drinking a few glasses of ice cold Chardonnay in the evening knowing that I don’t have to get up for work in the morning and it’s been sheer, unadulterated bliss.

But spring has a rather more worrying effect on me too. You see, I tend to get broody. As, in the words of those Seven Brides for Seven Brother, “Ma nature is lyrical with her yearly miracle”, my mind wanders off to thoughts of cute wee booties, baby gros and bobos.

All thoughts of the pain of labour, childbirth and the utter exhaustion of the last 13 months (well technically, 22 months as pregnancy was not a ball of fun for me) are being pushed to the back of my head as I see mammies pushing their new babies in their prams and see that even the sheep have got in on the act as wee lambs frolic through the fields.

However, not being utterly and totally insane, I am trying my hardest to push the broody thoughts to the back of my head while trying not to look like a mad baby-snatching type woman as I go ga-ga over the wee eeny pink Little Roo outfits in Tesco (I’ve had a blue baby, next time I demand one of the pink variety).

I’m trying instead to focus on the fact that one of my oldest and dearest friends has just become a mummy again to a gorgeous little princess by the name of Elizabeth who arrived safely on St. Patrick’s Day. My poor husband has been driven to distraction as I ooh and aah over the pictures of the little mite as he knows once I actually get a chance to cuddle the wee toot, he will have to adopt sensible husband mode and tell me there is no way on God’s good and green earth that we are having another baby just yet.

The thing with broodiness is that it creeps up on you and while one week you are staring at the destruction your toddler has caused in your living room and swearing “Never again” and the next you are trying to think what baby names would go well with your existing child (For the record I love Oscar and Grace and my husband and parents think that I’m demented for even considering those names) and gawping at nursery furniture and the latest looks in prams. (The ladies at the Pram Centre will be rubbing their hands with glee!)

But I’m well aware that this is a seasonal broodiness. It has arrived because the days seem brighter and somehow easier to deal with and because it has also coincided with my wee man getting rapidly more independent and not needing his mammy just as much.

You would think his independence would make me jump for joy. After all, it’s a blessed relief not to have to spend two hours over a feed with a colicky or get up 5 times a night to tend to a screaming ball of arms and legs.

But I feel sad that time has passed so quickly and I know that he will never be dependent on me in the same way again. Someone should really warn us mammies about that. It’s a shock to the system to go from providing everything for your child while pregnant to see them bum shuffling (for as yet, Joseph Allan refuses to walk preferring the bum shuffle method) at high speed across the floor to play with their favourite toy or grab a cup of juice.

Perhaps, when thinking about it, it’s not that I’m particularly broody for another baby, more for my existing wee toot to revert to that stage where he happily cuddled his mammy and didn’t try throwing himself off the sofa or bed mid nappy change. (A flying poo at 3 in the morning is not fun).

And , if I think about it, dealing with the mythical baby number two (This time it’s serious) while having to deal with the bum-shuffle king of old Derry town may not be the easiest thing to contend with.

So I guess, Ma Nature you can keep your miracle for this year thank you very much and I promise not to change my mind when I get a huge cuddle of ickle tiny gorgeous little Elizabeth….honestly!

Welcome to my world

Hello and welcome!
Let me introduce myself and my madness to you. I'm 28 years old and a mother to a gorgeous, if slightly mental, 13 month old son (It must run in the genes).
His name is Joseph. He likes to bum shuffle about at high speed, eat cheese and sing that blasted McDonald's theme tune (you know the one!). He seems to have more of a preference for his daddy at the moment than for mammy. I put that down to the fact that in the last week the wee mite has discovered he is the proud of owner of a winky. He has also realised that daddy has one. Mammy, however, has not so she is not allowed in their club.

All that aside, I'll tell you a little about me and my parenting style. After about two years of feeling broody myself and hubby decided to try for a baby; not for one second actually realising what this would entail in terms of sleepless nights, stitches and emotional upheaval.

We were lucky. We hit gold on our third month of TTC. Sadly I don't think I realised just when that pink line came up (ironic really that it was a pink line, considering I was having a boy), just how mental pregnancy hormones would make me.

By the time I reached 5 months pregnant I was a basket case. I can laugh when I look back at it now, but it was a very scary time. I felt out of control, and anyone who knows me will tell you that isn't all that good for a control freak like me!

I became obsessed with wanting a daughter. I think I knew I was having a boy, but this didn't curb my obsession any. I remember my sister buying me some dummies when I was around 10 weeks pregnant and one of them was blue. I knew then, by this omen, I was having a boy...and I spent many a night crying about it.

When we reached the infamous 23 week scan, and they couldn't tell the sex of my baby; I cried. I screamed and wailed and was so inconsolable that hubby and I had a huge fight and I was left to walk through the pouring rain the mile or so so home; crying all the time.

Hubby couldn't understand why I wasn't just happy our baby was healthy. Looking back on it now, nor can I. Needless to say the next day I was marched to my local GP who held my hand as a I sobbed and then gave me some very lovely happy pills to stabilise my mood.

I cannot explain how it felt to have her understand what I was going through. She didn't judge me, she just helped.

Nine weeks later, by the time we reached 32 weeks and another scan, I had stabilised enough to be delighted to find out I was having a son. I spent the journey into town afterwards telling everyone who would listen that the doctor had seen a scrotum (probably the most horrible word in the English language).

When my son was born, I was delighted to have him here safe and healthy. Yes, I still get a pang walking through Next and looking at the pink clothes and stripey tights send me all gooey...but as far as I'm concerned now boys rule and girls drool.

If that minor insight into my insanity has you intrigued...keep reading!
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...