Before I had a baby I had a few set things in my head that I would and wouldn’t do. I’m sure every potential parent does. Those things that are the line in the sand which must not and will not be crossed. To my past self I now say, you are a moron. Don’t be such a numpty. You will do anything and everything you need to do to survive. And if the baby is still alive at the end of the day you will feel that you have succeeded.
Frankly I now firmly believe that there is too much pressure about the whole parenting thing. You MUST breastfeed. TV is the devil. Dummies are evil. You should or should not (depending on which way you lean) co-sleep. And don’t even get me started on the ‘right or wrong’ ways to give birth to your baby! That’s just a minefield asking for new mums to end up feeling horrible and guilty if they don’t have a beautiful, peaceful drug free birth with barely a whimper. I gave birth unexpectedly on my hallway floor having taken just two paracetamol several hours before. Believe me, at that moment, I would have taken bloody horse tranquilliser if it had been offered. One could say that I had a natural, drug free birth and isn’t that lovely. Well it didn’t feel bloody lovely and I more than whimpered. I screamed the house down. But that’s just me. I edge towards the dramatic generally.
Anyway – my point is that most of my ardently held beliefs about how I would raise my child have disappeared. I have a general direction I’m steering in but other than that I’m pretty flexible. I’m getting to grips with the whole ‘tiny new human’ business in general, although it hasn’t all come naturally. More on that some other time. What I hadn’t really considered before now was that bubs may have some ideas of her own that she wishes to implement. Bit of a shocker that one!
I was not (and still am not) a big baby person. I completely adore my own but I’m generally the person who avoids other people’s kids. I don’t really get their cuteness appeal. Puppies, yes. Babies, not so much. So due to my self-enforced lack of experience, it never occurred to me that an 8 month old may actually have an opinion! That is, until we started buying bubs toys.
I had always said that I didn’t mind messy toys. I’m really looking forward to when we can paint and play dough and generally create the crap out of stuff. Bring it on. But noisy toys? No. No, no, no. And preferably also a limit to the garish plastic monstrosities that seem to be inevitable with small children. Of course, predictably, my house is now littered with singing cuddly toys, plastic flashing, music blaring toys and a massive, garish, impossible to store, Fisher-Price jumperoo which also sings and flashes lights, just to top the whole nightmare off. And bubba loves it all. Just bloody loves it. C’est la vie.
But I never ever imagined for a single second that I would spend a penny of our hard earned cash on the most disgusting doll I have ever seen. See photo above. It looks like the victim of a hideous accident. But bubs chose it. She saw it in a charity shop and her whole face lit up. We had to get it for her. And she is never happier than when she is trying to stick its whole face in her mouth. It makes her world complete. I give up. Bloody child has a mind of her own. Unbelievable.