I may have alluded to this briefly in previous blogs but fuck me, this parenting gig is hard work. There are so many, and I mean SO SO many amazing beautiful great incredible wonderous things about being a mum but there are so many down right shit things that just aren’t talked about when you first decide to make the leap to parenthood. Granted I’m sure most people don’t google ‘worst thing about having a child’ before they jump in the sack to procreate but seriously, tha fuck wasn’t I warned about sleep regression, food refusal, teething (fuck me teething, when does this end?!?!), thriving independence (you know, when they want to do everything themselves then throw a tantrum when you try to help them), the witching hour and leaps (yeah…wtf?). I know I’m not the first person to struggle with their precious little baby developing into a full-blown tantrum throwing demon toddler but really, couldn’t ya warn a sista?
So let’s start with my favourite..teething. And by favourite I mean least favourite. Chloe sprouted her first tooth at around 9 months. A little later than normal but she was teething since about 5 months. I was almost convinced that I just had the most miserable baby in existance, she was so sensitive and cried a lot for no obvious reason to the point I thought she might be broken and I should check the return policy (who am I kidding, she still does). I thank my luckiest of stars that it hardly affected her sleeping, only on the odd occasion she would wake in the middle of the night and needed resettling. Now at 10 and a half months she has 3 teeth and one that is about to pop through and she is a friggen nightmare most days and I’m blaming it on teething (naively praying she isn’t just destined to be a mongrel of a child forever). Who knew teething would turn your child psychotic for seemingly months on end. I know teething affects all baby’s differently and I know it must be extremely painful for the poor souls but fo’ real, can a mumma catch a break?!? One breaks through and I get a slightly more content child for a day or two then the next one starts to take hold of our lives. I could only imagine if she wasn’t sleeping too…bless you to all the mummas with screaming teething tots at all hours of the day and night, I salute you!
Leaps…yeah, I never even heard of it till it was mentioned on another mumma bloggers post, #amateur. There’s an app called Wonder Weeks and it shows you where your baby is developmentally and basically how much of an asshole he/she may be in the next few days/weeks/months etc (you know, on a scale from 1 to omg, someone take this kid before I throw it in the bin). It’s based on the average baby so I don’t rely wholly on it but it’s nice to have some kind of explanation as to why I feel like donating my infant to a church at times.
Food refusal. So I know this one may well be an issue for years to come but I’m really hoping it improves. I guess I hoped Chloe would inherit her dads appetite but no ma’am, she is a bit of a pain in this department. I’m ok with the mess on the floor and changing of clothes multiple times a day but it’s like come on kid, I convinced your father to let me buy a $2000 thermomix so making meals would be a breeze but of course I have a freezer full of lovingly prepared purées that you refuse to try. What a brat! But things have improved in the last month, due to that thriving independence previously mentioned I’ve nearly completely given up on spoon-feeding as it generally ends in a food fight (ie: Chloe throws a tanty when I don’t give her the spoon and knocks it from my hand in the midst of her fit). I now break up the finger foods into small bite size pieces for Queen Chloe as she will spit it out if it can’t be eaten in one bite but at least she’s eating. And then there’s constipation and trying to figure out what caused it and the anxious wait for that next lethal poo explosion or enduring days of little poop pellets and grouchy baby with a belly ache. And nappy rashes…jeezus just feeding them is like a never ending battle.
I’d definitely heard of the witching hour pre baby but I never thought it would be as painful, especially when the hubs is at work so it’s normally just me and the banshee baby. It’s that painful hour/s between 5pm and bedtime that children transform into feral howling baby trolls that form selective hearing, throw senseless tantrums and demand your undivided attention regardless of if you’re trying to cook a half decent dinner or duck off for a quick pee. Not having someone to handball the baby to so I can get a few minutes of peace in the evening is a bit shit, I’m generally a quivering mess after I’ve put Chloe to bed at night but this again is probably something that is only going to get worse as the troll gets older but if anyone finds a cure for it I’m tots keen for that remedy! For now I’ll settle with a glass (erhm..bottle) of red and/or some chocolate after Chloe is tucked in for the night.
But of course all the amazing things outweigh the difficult shitty frustrating things. Even though she drives me to tears the little rascal sure knows how to put a smile on my dial. She’s sure got an attitude and is turning out to be quite the little princess but I’d never change her, ok maybe less whining would be nice but who doesn’t like a challenge. We are currently in that frustrating phase between crawling and walking where she never, and I mean NEVER sits still, constantly climbs up on everything and falls quite a bit so we have plenty of tears but I love seeing her grow and learn. I honestly don’t think this parenting thing gets easier, I just think we find ways to make it through and deal with the day-to-day stresses of raising and keeping those little mini dictators alive and thriving.