Sunday morning. 9:34am. Sat on the train Birmingham bound. Sooooo excited! However, to get to this point has been somewhat a challenge, and any parents reading this will certainly give a reassuring nod of acknowledgment as my mornings escapades unfold.
My morning began as it does most mornings, with an arm that is numb and half dead because it has been cupped around my 1 year old above my head for the previous 3 hours. I normally have to perform a sideways commando roll off a single mattress onto her bedroom floor, where I’ve been hanging on by a butt cheek most of the night trying desperately to get a few hours of anything that resembles sleep. I did have a few weird dreams (another blog perhaps), so I know I slept, but they were interspersed with me trying to resuscitate my arm, breastfeeding my daughter, trying to creep out of said child’s bedroom like a ninja, and playing musical beds with my own and the crack-den mattress in the nursery! I did manage to warm my ice cold feet on my husband’s legs at one point, much to his delight.
Once out of the bedroom, I have those precious few minutes to dive in the shower to revive myself. This is of course shortlived, as through blurred vision due to shampoo suds in my eyes, I can see a little person through the door of the shower, her face and hands pinned tightly to the glass. If she could talk, she’d have said “Nice try. You thought you could escape me. I heard the water, so knew what you were up to. If you don’t get out of that shower in 5 seconds, I’m gonna scream the place down”. As she can’t talk, I just got an annoying ugh ugh sound that she has adopted to get my attention. It’s very effective, I hear it was used during the second world war as a form of torture.
The shower is followed by me trying to get dressed, dry my hair and brush my teeth, all with daughter in my arms. I end up looking like I’ve been assaulted by a tube of Aquafresh whilst getting dressed in a wind tunnel. But at least the kid has stopped with the ugh ugh sound!
To actually get out of the house whilst causing minimum stress and disruption requires extreme covert procedures carried out by husband and wife. My husband is extremely good at acting as a decoy. Several silly faces and noises are employed to convince my daughter that she would rather be held by him than me. A then rather lengthy stand in front of the coffee machine is used while I escape out of the door. (Apparently coffee machines are thrilling to watch).
So while I drive to the station I realise I’ve forgotten my book, forgotten to paint my nails, I’ve had no breakfast or coffee from the aforementioned machine, I have a huge compulsory blob of toothpaste on my top (why does this always happen???), and my heart rate is through the roof….but I’m out.
The worst thing about this whole covert operation is that I can’t say goodbye to my children. If I say goodbye, my cover is blown. When my husband goes out, he gets kisses and cuddles. We stand at the door waving him off like he’s off to war! He gets the big send off. If I’d said goodbye, I’d still be at home. I’d have a crying child hanging around my neck! (The 6 year old is not so bothered anymore). But this is no time to feel sorry for myself, I have a lot to be grateful for. If I hadn’t forgotten my book, I wouldn’t have written my blog. Plus I’m now on my way to a spa day with my good friends – eeeek! And if anything, this whole rigmarole let’s me know that the bond between me and my children is so strong, I know my cuddles and kisses will be waiting for me when I get home.