Tag Archives: Baby Love

In the T-Zone

I was thinking today how people have their own baby comfort zones (when’s yours?), and how mine’s definitely not with actual babies.

Oh, I loved every inch of him from the beginning, don’t get me wrong. I still squeal over his little newborn outfits and rewatch his three-month videos. But I was deeply, continually anxious at first, mostly about being in charge of a tiny, still-tiny, yes-still-really-tiny-is-he-ever-going-to-get-fatter boy who wouldn’t eat and threw everything up and seemed so breakable, all the time. The older he got, the more of his personality he inhabited, the more I thought oh yes. Oh yes. I know you after all, Henricus Rex. We can do this.

You know how people yearn for their three-day-old to come back, all downy skin and kitten yawns? I don’t think I’m one of those people.

I think I will yearn for fourteen months.

This, now: if there is a better age than this I will eat the piece of banana he stashed underneath Sir Prance-A-Lot last week and hoped it was gone forever. This throwing chubby arms around my neck. This wriggling backwards on his belly to back down the stairs, and getting the angle wrong and backing somewhere else entirely. This rummaging in the fridge for salad cream (he doesn’t even like salad cream). This hour before bed when he is sat on our laundry bin and we are finally, properly making each other laugh on purpose. This certainty that he will never run out of things in our flat on which to live dangerously.

So I will take fourteen months and I will keep it for myself, thank you very much. Fourteen months is my baby comfort zone. I am in the game. Except that I have loved every phase more than the one that came before it, so I can’t guarantee I won’t be claiming fifteen months as well.

I suppose I’m saying that I think this is all pretty great.

Notes from the trenches: 2

You know when your husband sends you his PayPal login details and tells you to delete the text message once you’ve used it, and then you are distracted by a small boy trying to eat a large battery and remember about it three months later?

Here are some of the other text messages I found while that thing totally, definitely did not at all happen to me.

10 July

H just discovered smoothie. Has a whole new GIVE ME MORE sound he made up especially. He did not even know that fruit comes in liquid (mind blown).

7 Aug

I bought a PD James for £1 in a charity shop today and read it all. Then had to go check the whole house for murderers. You’re welcome.

11 Aug

All I have to say about this morning is: please never die and make me a single parent.

21 Aug

I just cannot buy him a pair of crocs.

29 Aug

Coolio, fit-head. H is pretending to sleep. He has a temperature and is exhausted, but apparently has SONGS TO SING.

3 Sept

Is it too girly to put the cloud and rainbow stickers on Henry’s car?

– Yes. Flames, and go-faster stripes only.

It didn’t come with any. We put the face on though, because the empty eye sockets were creeping me out.

5 Sept

So, Tesco decides which coupons it sends according to what you buy most often.

Our coupons this month are all for chocolate milkshake. Good times.

11 Sept

I am seriously thinking about a bedtime scone to use up the leftover clotted cream.

Had it. Just half. NO REGRETS.

25th Sept

Another Houdini poop morning here. Joy. I think I found it all.

27 Sept

That’s great. I am making dinner…very slowly. While also doing this.

Sadface Henry does not believe in dinner making.

1 Oct

Hey, you!
Did you tell me that I had devil breath this morning, or was that a dream?

He claimed it was a dream, but I have my doubts.

And now, there are approximately 72.5 things on my living room floor (the 0.5 is the bit of pork Henry flicked off his spoon yesterday while practising his Wingardium Leviosa), so it’s time for the Quick-Before-Tim-Gets-Back tidy. Henry is pretending to sleep but actually throttling the life out of his baby monitor. Since the monitor was halfway across the room on his rocking chair, I’m intrigued.

Welcome back, Monday – we hardly missed ye.

Third wheel

Just don’t try to get between these two at the moment.

Ever since Tim got back from his last trip away, Henry’s been all over him like a woolly-jumpered rash. Oh, you ask him to stop using the clothes horse as a bungee rope and he’s all me-no-understandy, but tell him that Daddy’s nearly home and he’ll wait at the gate for an age.

I find it almost unbearably lovely. And truth be told, I am also enjoying letting Tim do the bedtime routine ‘because he missed you so much today’.

Expect the screaming heebie-jeebies when Daddy’s gone for nearly two weeks in October. Ug.

Holding back the flood

My baby is about to turn one, and I’m having a bit of a crisis about it.

The reasons being,

a: this year has gone by like a flash. And it’s not like I don’t want him to be one – he is SO much fun he kills me – but that I feel like I’ll take a breath and be sending him to school. This is not ok, internet.

b: I have once again arrived at a point at which none of my clothes fit right or look nice. I wish my body would pick a shape and stick to it so I could work around it. I would like to be skinny again, very much, and feel bad that I am not and worse about being so shallow.

c: I have now had a year of this stay-at-home life, and decidedly do not have my crap together yet. Whence cometh the effortless homemade meals, the gloriously tidy house, the thoughtful visiting of old ladies, the volunteering in the community, the toddler reciting his times-tables over lunch? It hasn’t arrived here yet. And I only have one.

d: I am just totally in love with him right now. The chattering, and the way he laughs with a wrinkled-up nose, and the way he’s painting the kitchen wall with a tube of lip gloss at the moment, and the way he wants desperately to walk but won’t let go of my hand, and the fact that I’m starting to find things like biro in the space behind his ear. It won’t always be like this and I can’t keep him where he is. For evidence, see exhibit A, this business of turning one at the weekend. I am terrified.

Honestly, that’s why I write this blog, apart from the fact that writing and connecting with you fine people are some of my all-time favourite things to do.

Because maybe if I write him well enough, I can keep him still. At least for now. At least for the space of 200 words. Before he lets go of my hand completely.

I keep trying. Oh gosh, I can’t help it.

Notes from the trenches

I had to search through five months’ worth of text messages to Timothy this morning, looking for some bank account information I’d forgotten.

Henry and I have had an interesting five months.

2nd March:

Kamikaze baby just took a head-first dive off the sofa. I was on the other side of the room and managed to catch him before he hit the ground, but ended up in some very painful splits. Next week I am putting him in one of those inflatable sumo suits, and that will be the end of it.

29 March:

FYI. Henry plus Dyson Air Blade equals Armaggeddon. John Lewis was startled.

11 April:

You know, we always start off breakfast so neat and tidy. And then somehow, by the end, we’re always here.

19 April:

I have fallen out with tantrum boy for the day. I am running away to sea to be a ship’s monkey. We can Skype. They have Skype on ships, right?

30 April:

Put Henry in his room while I took my call, and paid for it with an hour of hysterics. Took me 20 mins to persuade him to sit down long enough for me to use the loo. By which point things were rather desperate.

8 May:

Btw I had a whodunnit dream in which you were the murderer! O the betrayal. You must be extra nice to people today.

11 May:

Guess who just pulled the monitor off the wall, wrapping the wire round his neck as he fell and bringing the picture frame crashing down with it? He’s fine, I am not. UNFUNNY.

15 May:

Got your £5. Had to be very nice to the cashier.

Did winks and everything.

No, not really.

17 May:

Just had the biggest lol of my life feeding H an olive.

20 May:

H just found out that the fridge magnets come off. Caught him eating Richard Hammond’s head.

23 May:

H just did the biggest, mankiest sick all in my hair. I screamed and frightened him so he screamed, and now we both smell. Good times.

27 May:

The batteries in Henry’s walker are running down. She sounds like she’s had hormone therapy and/or too many beers.

29 May:

An astonishing proportion of that rear-ended deluge was raisins. That is all.

5 June:

I had a sad dream about you last night. Try not to catch cancer today!

7 June:

These aren’t scratches from Henry dropping my iPhone, I’ve just realised. These are tooth marks. Dude.

Ha! I love these ridiculous, hair-raising days. I want to trap him as he is so he can’t get any bigger.

I suspect that one day I’ll look back and wish for the simplicity of clearing up sick and keeping him still. For now, we need more disinfectant.

What goes in one ear

Yesterday Henry and I went to have lunch with one of my favourite people ever.

She lifted my boy high in the air and said over and over ‘you are so loved. You are so loved. You are so loved’.

I just thought you couldn’t tell a baby anything better than that.

I often catch myself asking him, as I come back into a room where he is, ‘are you being a good boy?’ I don’t mean it – he doesn’t yet have the capacity to be a good boy or otherwise, and he can’t tell what I’m saying beyond the tone of voice anyway – but it’s just a way of saying ‘hello, I’m here – no need to panic’. It strikes me, though, that he can’t be far off understanding actual words, and that what I say to him will be significant sooner rather than later.

I do want him to be good, of course – and unfortunately (for him) I am not the type to put up with any messing. But I want him to feel that he is loved before he has a name for it. Right down in the centre of himself, alongside ‘Daddy is awesome’ and ‘boobs = yay’. I would like it to be the starting point for everything he does.

Because if the starting point is ‘I am so loved’, then I think the finishing point will be something to see.

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