Tag Archives: parents

Where’s the baby ?… Here’s the baby !!!

1 Sep

From the day we are born until a certain age we are taught and incited to play. Our rooms are filled with toys, books, games of all sorts. Playing is part of our evolution, our education, our growth.

Just like we teach our animals to sit, lie down, roll over or play dead through games and treats, we teach our kids the same thing.

This got me thinking… Why do we become so serious and stop playing ? We reach a point in life where playing seems “childish” and we forget to enjoy these rare and relaxing moments. I’m not talking about gluing yourself to the iPad, iPhone, Nintendo and any other brain numbing machine. This probably kills braincells faster than vodka !! Nor am I talking about any competitive games where you end up wanting to beat the crap out of your opponent and where your self esteem is wracked if you loose.

Now that I have a baby of my own and that I am dedicating my days, aside from boring and numbing housework, to play games, make noise with rattles, pretend to be a frog and a princess whenever I shake that finger marionette in front of an hysterical baby, play with weird looking animals that make noise, I admire his innocent smile and ability to enjoy a moment that we would (and that we do) consider silly and a waste of time. He will, for the next 4-6 years, learn “life” through games. Hold (highly important) conferences with his toys. Play loud instruments that people (other than his parents of course) will be offering him. Learn what’s a tree and an apple through books and puzzles. Swing for 15 min on a rusty swing in the park and have the time of his life…

At what point do we wake up in the morning, look ourselves in the mirror and think that this is it !? That we are now too “old” to play (and optionally enjoy ourselves) !? The more important question is – why ?…

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What is time ?

10 Aug

When you have a baby or an older kid I imagine, the concept of “time” is no longer the same. As a parent you must dedicate most of it if not all of it to your offspring (although somehow it may be more of a female thing as I have noticed that men manage to make time for themselves for whatever activity they are interested in whenever they are interested in it… One hand on the video game while the other is holding the (baby) bottle. Both hands on the video game while the baby is sitting in his chair waiting for his bottle,…) Don’t get me wrong, men are great with kids as well, but their priorities don’t seem to be the same as for us, mothers… At time suckers (when we decide to exchange a beauty treat for a house cleaning session while the baby is asleep)

After a birth, men (and some women, but I’m still looking for them) go back to work where they talk about business things, take important decisions and sign elaborate contracts. They wine and lunch out practically every day, sitting calmly at the round table of the working knights, making jokes and taking it easy for a full hour or two.

At home for the one who’s on his full time baby-shift it’s a different story. A baby has a particular notion of time. Time means : “feed me”, “play with me”, “there is something wet taking over my body.. Have I peed ?”, “I’m tired, I want to sleep but I don’t know if I can and oh look, there is a lion smiling at me, I must smile back and taste his fur”, so your time does no longer exist. I’ve been talking to mothers around the world and it makes me feel good to know that I’m not the only one not having time for a shower until a ridiculous hour in the day, to do my nails when they no longer look like dignified lady nails, to finish my breakfast before it’s lunch time etc. We take time for ourselves whenever we can rather than whenever we want… A wise man once said : “we must use time wisely and forever realize that the time is always ripe to do right” (~Nelson Mandela) My time is ripe right now to go home and bath the baby…

Insouciance

4 Aug

When you have a baby, that you stop working for a few months to be a mother and a “housewife”, especially when you’re not used to (either of) it, as the days go by, each day seems like the day that preceded it. You do the same things over and over again. Your conversations seem dull compared to your working friends. Daily entertainment limited. Intellectual level low. Weekends seem like week days and you find yourself day dreaming more and more of holidays in far away lands under coconut trees with cocktails in your hand and George Clooney sitting by your side…

Life is not boring, don’t misunderstand me, only so (oh so) different. And by the time that you get used to it, you’re back to work, you see your kid only for short periods of time in the evening and the weekend and before you know it, poof, he’s off to college !! (Well, Hugo has a few 17 years and 6 months left before packing his bags, which is a relief I must admit as I’m telling myself I’d like to see the outcome of my constant diaper changing). I do realize, as so many keep telling me, that I’m lucky to see him change and grow (and when I think of it, 5 months ago he wasn’t half of the baby he is today) Witness his first laughs, see him catch objects, turn on his stomach, then fight his way back on his back. Talk baby talk. Grow from 0M to 3-6M old cloths…

In the meantime, I have lost my job. The company I was working for shut down and so far, no job to return to. I know I’ll miss Hugo as of September as he’s the only thing I’ve known since March, but at the same time, I know I’ll be happy to find some sort of independence again as I truly need it !!… Did I mention that “very much” !?

My mom told me not so long ago she felt like there was an elastic band holding us together when I was a baby. She could go that far without me but at some point she was being pulled back to her “duties and responsibilities”. I understand that feeling only so well now. In no way do I question the love that I feel for both my baby and my husband, but this situation can feel like a burden at times…

Tonight I went out for drinks with a dear and old friend of mine I haven’t seen in a real a long time and what seems to be a former life… All my men were left at home. Just me, my friends and cocktails. This reminded me I should be doing this more often… Would every night be ok ?

Taking some (me) time off

11 Jul

Since March 6th, I’ve had little time for myself. Long showers, lunch, diner, coffee and drinks on a terrace in the rain or in the sun, proper shopping days, a stroll, an expo, a bus ride, all – stroller free – is something these days that I sometimes (really really) miss and get on (too) rare occasions !! I’ve even been to my physiotherapist on several occasions one hand on the stroller pushing it back and forth during the session… Not very relaxing when you’re there to do just that. So yes, life has changed dramatically and I came to the conclusion that my life is no longer my own and probably won’t be for the next 18 years… or 35 in case I’m pretty unlucky !!

We’ve been in Ile de Ré for the past 7 days, relaxing in the sun as much as possible. Yesterday morning I woke up at 6.30am, not for the baby but for the dog who was moaning in his corner a bit too early for his time. I got up, fed the dog, took him out, waited for the baby to wake up, fed him, changed him, put him back to bed and fell back into mine. Somewhere between 8.30 and 9am hubby got out of bed, took dog and baby out for a walk and I went back to sleep for almost 2 full hours… I wish I could sign up for this every day !!
Today, I didn’t get that lucky but at least both baby and dog slept till 8.15am.

One thing I hated in the first couple of months when baby arrived was being (constantly) told that taking a morning shower was something I should easily be able to do and it seemed “strange” I had such a hard time finding a moment to do so. Also, that I should make it a rule to nap whenever baby did… It’s a great idea in theory, it really is, and it probably works for some, I’m sure. However, while some manage this very well, others cannot sleep on command as easily as you probably do and napping less then, in my case, at least a couple of hours, puts them in an awfully bad mood when they wake up. Plus you’ve got the quite unexpected “housewife” scene going on when you have a baby, something you didn’t see coming at all ; washing, folding and putting away the never ending laundry (I truly thought that daily washing was an urban legend, but as it turns out, it is not !!), you find yourself constantly cleaning baby bottles (so you go out and buy enough to keep you going for 3 full days yet it never stops), unless you go on a hunger strike or spend your new life as a new mummy out in town, lunch will not prepare itself and if it was a pleasure to cook before it now becomes an obligation to avoid you from dropping from size 40 to 34 in a week.. By the time your food is ready, baby wakes up again and by the time you can actually get around to eating it, it’s dinner time so you start all over again.

Right now I can gladly say that while I’m writing this (I did start this 3 days ago but I’m getting closer to the “publish” button by the word now) hubby is playing with the baby, the dog is asleep… (actually hubby may have fallen asleep next to baby… It just got awfully quiet in the house all of a sudden) and I’ve got some time to look myself up close in the mirror and catch up…

So this is how it goes eh !? They should add this on the pregnancy test along with the 2 pink lines :

Pregnant*

*This is where your “life does no longer belong to you” start ! Enjoy your next 8 months to the full !! Trust us !!

I do have to say though that baby Hugo is really damn cute… A pain at times like every other baby on planet earth is I believe, but he’s quite cute and even though, after all this time I’m still not fully aware that he is “mine”, I wouldn’t mind keeping him a few more years see how he’ll turn out.. At least until he’s 18th… Or his 35th !!

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