Drinks with the girls

Last Friday night I met up with two girlfriends from work for drinks and a catch-up. Of course (as with most of my expeditions) there was some minor drama beforehand to add to the excitement.  I won’t go into detail but suffice to say that due to circumstances out of my control, I had 20 minutes to get dressed, prettified, say goodbye to the baby (oh … and NIH), drive, find a parking spot and walk the 5 minutes to the bar.

Challenge not only accepted but achieved. What can I say? It’s a gift … and there was the promise of wine and gossip at the finish line!

For two hours we shared a bottle of wine, some hot nibbly food and chatter. It was such a treat for various reasons:

  1. I was out in clothes that I hadn’t fit into for some time – and not to boast but I think I looked pretty fine for someone who, up until 7 weeks ago, looked like Moby Dick’s twin sister
  2. The clothes were not chosen according to how discretely I could pop a boob out (although some may argue that’s precisely how you should dress for a Friday night out on the town)
  3. I got to spend time with two lovely women who make me laugh, keep me grounded and fill me in on happenings outside my temporary but very narrow world
  4. Hot food that I could eat without interruption
  5. Wine. Enough said.

My life at the moment revolves around a small, squinty-eyed dictator who calls the shots … and I’m ok with that. It’s all part of motherhood.

However, for a brief two hours I was just Me. And that’s something we mothers tend to put on the backburner – sometimes for so long we forget where we left it. Having a baby can be a very isolating experience if you let it so as a “Do-Over” mum who’s been through this before, I’d like to say “Don’t”.

Don’t forget who you are.

Don’t put off catching up with the outside world from time to time. It would have been far easier for me to just cancel, considering what was going on that afternoon but I had made plans and by golly I was going out, even if it meant I was late and it was only for a little while. Once you start down the road of opting out if it gets too tricky, it gets harder and harder to turn back. It’s ALWAYS going to be tricky with a baby. Work around it.

Don’t ditch your mates from BB (Before Baby). You need those girlfriends without kids just as much as you need girlfriends in the same boat as you. They not only remind you of who you were before but also give you a chance to talk about something other than sleeping, pooping or feeding. Make the effort. They are totally worth your time.

Take a step out of your routine of feeding, changing nappies and coaxing the little darling to go to sleep and do something for yourself.  It refreshes your batteries and makes you appreciate motherhood all the more.

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Terrible confession

Not just for funsies

Way back when I was a girl, one of my jobs was to take the garbage bag out to the wheelie bin that would sit behind the shed until bin day. We lived in Northern NSW, where sugar cane is a big industry. And with sugar cane comes cane toads.

Cane toads were prolific in our area, even in suburban back yards such as ours. Invariably, I would have to take the garbage bag out at night, walking across the grassy yard using the lights from the house as my guide in the darkness.

I did this in a sort of hop-skip-try-to-float-above-the-ground way as the worst feeling in the world was accidentally stepping on a cane toad. Or so I thought.

I was wrong.

Not long ago … I stepped on my baby.

That right there was definitely the worst feeling in the world.

“How on earth could you step on your baby?” I hear you cry.  As simply as this:

I had her on the floor on a blanket, having a stretch out and enjoying time NOT in my arms (or maybe that was me enjoying the time).  I got up to get a drink and came back and stepped over her … almost.

I was wearing some seriously comfy floppy pants. Unfortunately they’re a little long for my stubby soccer-player legs. The end of one pant leg slipped under my left foot and tripped me in such a way as to interfere with the planned trajectory of my right foot, shortening the arc considerably and re-configuring the landing site to close proximity to darling Little Miss’s left ankle.  In other words, I tripped on the stupid-arse pants and planted some of my foot on hers.

The yell she let out was magnificent.

I scooped up the poor little monkey and hugged her close, sobbing “sorrysorrysorry”.  She settled much faster than I did  and I spent at least an hour afterwards hugging her and repeatedly checking her little foot to make sure I hadn’t completely squished it.

Happy to say she’s fine – although if there’s any issues with it as a soccer player in later life,  you are all sworn to secrecy.

It’s only now I realise the dual purpose of those mats with the mobiles built over the top. Those foam pipes are not just for her amusement but also for protection against clumsy oaf mothers.