There’s that one day during the first year of your child’s life that you sit down with your cup of hot tea and your novel and you think something’s very, very wrong, why is he asleep, I should check him, he’s probably not breathing, like the only reason he could possible sleep this long is if he’s dead right, this tea is too hot, this cannot be real. Then there are the other 364 days of that year that you stand by the cot rocking him a little tiny bit too vigorously praying to anyone and everyone that he will just close his eyes. I spend a lot of time talking/crying with other parents about babies and sleep. For a little human being that needs a great deal of rest they sure don’t want it!?!
Here is a little list of things that can reduce a grown adult to tears, hopefully of laughter as you read, but remember that parents cry real-exasperated-I-give-up tears as a reaction to these evil, evil, evil things.
1. Other people’s children. Do children even go to school at all these days?! It seems like there is always a child outside your window crying/playing/screeching like a banshee. Where are the truancy officers, it cannot be school holidays AGAIN?!! And shouldn’t these kids be inside on the Xbox anyway? MY child will not be like that, he will play quietly and gently in the garden respecting all other parents and their wide awake despite four hours of rocking/jiggling/singing (if you can call it that) babies.
2. Rubbish day. We dread rubbish day. It’s once a week, why is it every single week? And why the heck hasn’t someone invented silent trucks yet? And why wouldn’t the nice recycling man not be open to my fabulous suggestion of please placing each jar and tin and bottle individually and gently into the truck?! And perhaps if you could park the truck at the end of the road and just walk down to get the bins thanks? That would be great, much appreciated.
3. Grass. More specifically, growing grass. Another machine that would be immediately embraced by the parenting community would be silent lawnmowers. Mrs next door I swear to god you mowed that lawn yesterday!!!!!! As for you Mr diagonally opposite, you were definitely out there mowing this morning and you’re out there mowing again this afternoon. And honestly both of your lawns put together aren’t as long as our lawn which hasn’t seen a mower in the last 6 months (who am I kidding? Twelve months).
4. Car doors. Seriously we have soft close kitchen cabinets and I’ve definitely used one of those fancy soft close toilet seats, where the hell are the soft close car doors??? And you definitely weren’t hiding a soccer team in that family wagon, so how do four of you possible need to open and close the doors 49 times before you make it inside the house?Don’t come home in your car during the day, or at night actually, just don’t come home. In fact probably best if you move away. Far away.
5. Cots/bassinets/Moses baskets/Pepi-pods/any baby sleep receptacle: how is it that babies are allergic to the very thing that was specifically designed for them to sleep in? It doesn’t matter how long they have been blissfully asleep in your arms for, doesn’t matter how many times you’ve coughed, or jiggled to test the depth of sleep, the second they feel their head touch their bed it’s like panic stations as those eyes whip open and stare at you, ‘you think I don’t know what you’re doing woman?! Nice try, now pick me up out of this snuggly, warm, perfectly made cot of HELL and get me back in your arms, you’re not DOING anything today, how many times do I have to tell you?”
6. The most evil disturber of sleep ever invented that half of us can’t live without, the pacifier. Oh you trickster, you bringer of false sleep, you magical comforter turned sleep destroyer!!! They want it, they blissfully suck it, they fall beautifully asleep, right? Deeply, soundly asleep, like we do the second our heads hit the pillow these days. It lolls out of their mouth and you let it sit there because you’re too scared to move, they roll their head over and it falls out. Still asleep? *sigh*. The relief. It’s done. Magic.
Then BAM, crisis-mum-it-fell-out-of-my-mouth, where is it where is it WHERE IS IT!?!!!!
Don’t fight it parents. Sit down with a hand towel (a flannel is not enough, trust me) and cry. He’s not asleep anyway, so you can sob as loud as you like, while you dream of the day he’s a teenager and he won’t STOP sleeping.