Tuesday, 26 February 2008

I'd like to thank....

Is there anything to depress one more on a Monday morning than watching the Oscars in grubby mis-matching PJs with a small child brandishing the DVD remote at you whining for Bob the fecking Builder? The red carpet belles so perfect that it appears they have miraculously been air brushed in real life, with heavenly shoes and swishy flowing dresses.... the men dapper and groomed to the point that they are barely recognisable in their penguin suits. (Dior? Galliano? Versace? Who cares - they all the look the same). Blinding teeth, shiny hair, glowing make up and twinkly winking diamonds - and that's just the blokes. I know it probably took ten thousand people and a million dollars to make each actress/model/whatever look this good and underneath their gown their Brazilian is itching the hell out of them, their up-do is weighing like an anvil on their necks and their feet are killing them and they are about to faint as they haven't even eaten for six weeks, but hell, they look hot!

Thank God Diablo Cody won...true talent winning for once... and Javier Bardem. Is it me, or is he tasty even with that hair style? I feel a new crush developing rapidly. Doesn't life feel a bit grey in comparison with all the glitter and champers and little gold statuettes ? While we trudge to Sainsburies, put on a load and wipe a pooey bum? I am saved. Mark Eccleson is on Sky spouting guff -which is almost enough to make me lunge for the remote. He looks like a potato and sounds like a smurf. What that guy knows about film I could put on a stamp and still have room for my shopping list. Saucer of milk - for the unwashed lady on the sofa. Hurrah! There is a god. My Sky+ has frozen. I am saved from turning into a bitter old envious lemon.

Just as well - I have a bottom to wipe.

My second life questionnaire

Ok - I am sure you are wondering who the hell is this so called Crummy Mummy? So in a bid to get to know each other a little better I thought I'd answer The Independent's questionnaire. I read it on Saturday and frankly if its good enough for Felicity Kendal to answer - then why not moi?

The house I grew up in:

I shared a bedroom with my Mother until I was 10. Then I moved into a great house owned by her then boyfriend. I had my own room and everything. Truly my happiest days were in that house. I took such pride in my artwork on the walls, collages on the wardrobe door and self-designed furniture. It was my weekend oasis. I miss it still.

When I was a child I wanted to be:

A nurse. Actress. Singer (!!!! ha ha ha - I am tuneless). Rich. An according to a recent essay I found, written when I was 14 'a famous journalist and fashion leader.'

The moment that changed me forever:

The birth of my son - it changed everything in every way. Although before that I guess drunkenly giving my husband-to-be my number was the start of something pretty big. Naturally I had to be the bull that took the horns...

My greatest inspiration:

From books and films and friends. Listening to other folk's problems where I volunteer inspires me to be grateful for all I have. Sorry - did that make you pass the sick bucket?

If I could change one thing about myself:

Can I change more than one? Please? My temper. Lack of patience. Inability to tolerate stupidity. Need for control. My cellulite that threatens to invade every inch of me. My love handles. Not being a natural blonde. I could go on....

My fav item of clothing:

My shoes.... if only I had a reason to wear half of them. My comfy Uggs. Clothes.... a huge wool wrap that is like wearing a blanket. £15 from M & S and I get compliments on it all the time. Can I say my Bayswater handbag??

At night I dream of:

To many weird things to mention. The other day I gave birth - my ultimate fear. But in this dream it was easy peasy. Ex boyfriends feature occasionally - in fact my first love was a comedian the other day and believe me he was as far away from a comedian as you can get.

What I see when I look in the mirror:

That I need to buy Lancome's night cream soon - that and grow out of hormonal spots. Oh and my roots need done. Blue eyes looking back - sometimes with serious bags underneath them.

My style icon:

Dull as it sounds - Jennifer Aniston. She may not get the guy - but boy does she get comfy looking stylish clobber. I cannot bear women who try so damn hard. Where do they get the time?

I wish I'd never worn:

Heels on a long night out. Had 13 blisters ON EACH FOOT one evening. I stayed at a mate's and had to get a cab door to door as I couldn't put the blood soaked shoes on ever again.

It's not fashionable but I like:

Ugg boots. Or are they 'in' again? I can't keep up. Oh and 80s music and films.

You wouldn't know it but I am very good at:

Listening. Yes I may talk a glass eye to sleep but I volunteer for a charity that supports and befriends people who are suicidal or depressed. I listen and I support. It is the most rewarding thing I have ever done... (except Motherhood of course). Karma mate... karma.

You may not know it but I am not very good at:

Driving. If people speak to me danger is afoot. Husband keeps screaming at me 'Red light!!!' 'RED LIGHT!!!' Just to terrify me. I have been known to mount curbs (nearly ran over a jogger one Xmas) and ask strangers (builders mainly) to reverse park my car. Well my Mum's car - only drive when in Ireland. People are kinder to me there.

I drive/ride:

See above... A purple bike called Caprice pre child. Now thinking of buying my Aunt's small car. I know it is in for a few knocks. I'm not one for fancy cars. They go from A to B. What's there to want?

If I have time to myself:

Movies. Movies. Movies. Or reading a book/mag/Sunday supplements. Or I have a comfort blanket moment. It calms me.

My most valuable possession is:

Said blanket. Diaries. Photos. My son. Not in that order. My earcuff.

My fav building:

The Mercer Hotel NY. Love it Love it Love it. That and the Tuschinski cinema in Amsterdam. Stunning.

Movie Heaven:

Where do I begin? St Elmos Fire for a trashy rainy afternoon with cupcakes. Any John Hughes or Peter Weir film. A bit of horror - Halloween, Rosemary's baby. Charm - Almost Famous, All About Eve. Amadeus. American Beauty. The Virgin Suicides. La Confidential. Jagged Edge. The Goodbye Girl. Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. Door in the Floor. Fatal Attraction... you gotta love Glenn Close.

My greatest regret:

I try not to regret anything - wasted energy you know? But I wish I had got presenting out of my system earlier and tried to move into script editing at a much younger age. It is strange to be pockling around trying to get a new career together in my 30s. In some ways that is great - I don't have the insecurity and uncertainty of my 20s. But part of me thinks - feck I am getting on a bit aren't I?

The last album I bought:

Amy Winehouse. A year ago. I discover music about a year after everyone else has.

A book that changed me:

The Alchemist. Inspiring and hopeful.

My fav works of art:

Van Gogh's bedroom portrait. Dali and Johan Gorg's sketches.

The person who really makes me laugh:

The husband with his daily requests/excuses. The bunny with his fake cry. Eddie Izzard.

The shop I cannot walk past:

Mac make-up is hard. Oxfam Books on Marylebone High st. Starbucks and Gap. Shoe stores.... oh shoes.... my big love.

The best invention ever:

Tampax and C sections. C Beebies. Mascara. Dummies. Make up in general. Thank god for it.

In 10 years time I hope:

To be employed. Published. Healthy. Wiser.

My life in 7 words:

Well... not nearly over yet I hope!

Hen hangover hell + small child = pain

Good morning. Except it isn't. The wee bunny woke at 8:30 am. I know I know... I don't know how lucky I am. Most kids wake at an ungodly hour of six o'clock... middle of the night kinda stuff. But you see I am hungover. That means 8:30 is evil. I feel queasy, my head throbs, my mouth feels like something sucked all moisture from it before taking it's last breath and dying on my tongue. Wee bunny is on fine form. I've put on Ratatouille - not sure if it is for bunny or me. Why do I do it to myself? I think it is the insane need to prove to all around me (only one was another Mother) that although I have child - I am still FUN! I can still partay with the best of them. Maybe I just need to prove it to myself. Kid myself that nothing has changed, I may be crummy mummy but I can still hold my drink, swear like a tropper and dance like a whirling dervish. Oh yes, load me up and watch me goooooooooooo! How sad is that? I am powerless to stop myself. The urge to squeeze every tiny morsel of fun out of every precious second that I am out - free - without bairn or the husband - grips me in its clutches and I am determined to have the best time EVAH! To quote 80s one hit wonders Fairground Attraction 'it's got to be perrrrrrrrrrrrrfect.' Anyway, I digress. Normally I swear I will go out - just have 'a few' and return home a wee bit squiffy but nothing too severe. Instead, I get to the venue, have a little tipple and then WHAM! The juice is nectar from the gods. It strokes my tongue, loosens my tongue, eases the tension from my muscles and makes my head light. I want another. Then another - then shots anyone?

Well it was a hen do. At a bowling alley/kareoke venue. Winning combination eh? The more I drank the better I bowled. Every turn was completely unlike the previous attempt. There was no coherence to my performance. One throw/roll/ungainly run could result in a half strike or a complete wipe out with all 10 pins standing to attention - their army undefeated. The hen, bless her, was dressed a fetching fairy costume, decorated with glitter and the obligatory deely boppers (penis shaped and sparkly for extra mortification). She took most joy out of a special hen addition that I had never seen on a hen before. When she raised her seemingly endless net skirts she revealed a charming strap on replete with buldging veins. The henettes took great delight in fondling it and remarking on girth, length, smoothness etc. which only delighted the hen further. She proudly thrust out her groin and relished the irony of presenting her manhood at the ultimate female gathering. My favourite memory out of many (if hazy) is of the hen straddling a pool table, legs akimbo, revelling in the joy of her very own member. I wonder if this pic will feature in the wedding album?

Oh but there was more humiliation in store. Funny how your closest friends relish the opportunity to embarrass you into next year with their 'fun' games and 'in good spirit' gimmicks. The obligatory stripper arrived. At my own hen I swore that if any man started to disrobe within a mile of me I would use violence to escape and then never speak to the women ever again. They understood thank god. Last night poor hen had to endure a just-on-the-right-side of reasonable looking (he had more than a passing resemblance to Stifler from the American Pie movies - a fact I should not have known but I sadly did) toned youth strip while we chanted like a cats chorus. Yes, I led the charge. From the moment the poor boy entered I morphed into henette from hell and crowed at him to 'get your c**k out' every ten seconds. When the stripper has to tell you to calm down you know that is your cue to ease up on the liquor. Maybe the extra shot is not a good idea. But I ignored my inner alarm and guzzled down another vodka. He got his kit off but only let the hen in on his big (she told me later) secret. We got a rippling glimpse of it as he thrust against a grubby towel. Why this caused such excitement is beyond me. I found I had the microphone during this event and proceeded to compare, making sure everyone had their picture taken licking the poor boy's nipples, pretending (or in a camp male fr-hen's case not pretending at all) to grab his bits/bum/pecs. Oddly when the cheering ceased, he dressed in front of us, outdoor mac and all (to ward against the cold, bless) which detracted from the allure (?) so to speak. The mystique was completely lost when he shook hands and waved goodbye. I almost expected him to announce his name was Nigel and to ask us all to help toward his accountancy college fund. The evening then reached a kareoke crescendo - Kylie, The Pogues and a roaring rendition of Beyonce's Crazy in Love brought our own small house down. As we were forceably ejected from our sweaty little room my double gin and tonic started to taste slightly odd. One more sip and I knew I would have to make friends with the big white telephone, in true hen night style. It was time to go. I made a sharp exit. Leaving the hen still in her own wee world, singing her heart out with no accompaniment whatsoever. In one hand her trusty microphone and in the other, her new favourite toy.


awoke today from a curious dream about an ex. These lusty dreams have occurred several times of late. I harbour no desire to trudge along that dead end path again, but for some reason he keeps popping up in various slumbers: last night he visited me whilst I helped my Mother buy a bra at a fancy lingerie shop (what is that about?) and promised to take me for a burger - a wimpy no less - as a late b'day gift. (He always knew how to show a girl a good time...) This idea, in dreamland, caused me untold pleasure. So I awoke, overheated and somewhat confused about my impending burgerfest date, to the faint smell of vomit.

Raising myself, a bit bleary and wondering why sprogglet wasn't wailing his usual number waiting for brekky to hit the table. That alone should have been a subtle clue that something was amiss. Opening his bedroom door the musty, acidic pungent aroma assaulted my nostrils and shook me awake. Sprogglet sat up - his soft fluffy hair matted with pieces of regurgitated corn. He stank to high heaven. I threw open the window, woke the husband - who feigned exhaustion due to a night at work running his fancy schmancy bar, and naturally nothing to do with the copious drinks he consumed post work - and threw sprogglet into his arms. Then I set to work cleaning the vom covered sheets, the cot bumper and several teddies who had been caught in the blast. This was no 5 minute job - it was labour intensive. Husband left sprogglet in his high chair, feeding his face with nutella on toast and returned to bed. Helpful to a fault. Especially as in 90 minutes we had someone coming to view our flat (which is on the market - in the worst selling climate in 7 years, joy). Replaced sheets, put load in washer, folded dry washing and put away, tidied bathroom, put away washing up in kitchen blah blah blah. Cursed husband. Sighed long pained sighs until Husband got up and dressed foul smelling sprogglet - and then tried unsuccessfully to shift the sick from spog's hair. It was welded on. Time was running out. The flat may have looked tidy but the musk in the air made me want to puke. Husband kept helpfully saying how every room stank as if the vom stench was deliberately stalking him from room to room. Every window was wide open, diptique candles billowing in the breeze - but nothing would shift eau de vom. I threw on my gym gear, packed up sprog and hid bits and pieces in cupboards, under the bed etc so the flat showed no signs of anyone actually residing there. A blank canvas, if a stinky one. Then I spied 3 sets of eyes mournfully gazing at me from the changing mat. Panda, teddy and er.. teddy remained unwashed. Hurriedly I cleaned panda - his surface only washable. Just when I need to throw him in the washing machine - he had to be a difficult clean job. Likewise Teddy 1 and Teddy 2. Teddy 1 I stuffed into the wash basket - I'll deal with him later. Teddy 2. Poor old Teddy had really copped it. Every inch of him was practically covered in clusters of corn and muck. I couldn't face his deep clean. There was only one thing for it. Teddy went on holiday. To the big kitchen bin. Permanently. I swear he knew. Those brown eyes flickered a curse upon me as he disappeared into the plunging darkness.

Fingers crossed there is a market for eau de vom smelling flats these days....

Sexual Healing part 1... well something is healing over that's for sure

Sex after childbirth. Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha. Sorry. Was just thinking about various articles that I read that assured me that sex would maybe change a tiny bit post sprog but that one would be able to swing from the chandeliers, navigate a strap on and contort into the wheelbarrow all within 6 weeks of pushing a watermelon sized creature out your frufru. ( I know I had a section, but you know what I mean). Because I felt sooooooooooooooo sexy, sitting in a swanky Michelin starred restaurant in my maternity jeans, boobs leaking, deep pits of darkness under my bloodshot eyes, with unshaved legs and a half shaved undercarriage (well it was like a jungle region below a half-mown lawn) and an angry looking scar standing to attention like a 'do not enter' or 'enter at your peril' sign just above said straggly lawn.
When you have barely slept, your once pert bazookas are now sad saddlebags and your stomach reminds you of a king sized jelly on a plate - not to mention the war torn area between your legs - the thing that is really on your mind is getting laid - yes? According to selebs it is. If I hear one more bit of TV fluff whitter on about how having a baby has done nothing to quell their rampant sex lives - I will commit murder. It is almost as bad as when they claim pregnancy did nothing to alter their hot bedroom action either. So that extra 3 stone you put on which seems to be sitting solely on your stomach - didn't get in the way at all of position number 43 in the Karma Sutra? Give me strength. In all honesty - it wasn't so much the thought of the actual act that out me off - it was the fact that I was now a Mother. It made me think of my Mother. If there is one thing to keep a libido at bay is thinking of your Ma. Once I had been TV girl about town: never leaving the Met bar until the lights went on school disco ending stylee; cartwheeling in manolos... in the street... in a skirt; weeing behind a parked car...that then drove off mid flow and all the other sadly predictable things a show-off in London does when they are single and determined to prove that they are having the best time out of anyone they know - ever. Now I was - gulp - responsible. I had grown and borne another human being and boy did it show. I wasn't that carefree up-for-a-laugh girl any more. I was still up for a laugh (in between feeding and nap times mind) but carefree? Pah. More importantly where was my inner sex goddess? She had emigrated. I couldn't feel less sexy if I wore a potato sack and didn't bathe for a month. My body - curvy on a good day, with legs that could carry a belt like skirt - had become a feeding machine/soft squidgy pillow/vomit catcher/leaking/bleeding carcass of what it once was.(sorry to be so graphic - but you wanted the truth surely?) Sexy? Hot? Ready to be devoured and to ravage my man? The only thing I wanted to ravage was a good nights sleep and a long bath. Hardly the urges of a femme fatale. The question you all want to know is did it get any better (and how soon)? Well that my friend is another story...

Saturday, 23 February 2008

THE Lemon feeling

Ever felt like a lemon has been shoved up your whasits and it isn't moving - except perhaps to give you a weird dragging sensation as you lie reading The Culture section on an evening? No? Course you have - it is the feeling you get about 7-8 weeks in. No one talks about it. No one mentions the lemon. Sickness, nausea, your appetite going from content to ravenously starving in 60 seconds are all discussed willy nilly - but the lemon... well its a closely guarded secret. So there I was, weird dragging feelings. Something felt stuck there - you know, like a tampax applicator that your forgot to remove after 15 vodkatinis. Not as small though - thus not the 'lime' feeling. Bigger, but not as spherical as an apple. The mighty lemon.
Afraid that this was something grossly abnormal I made an appointment with the GP. I explained my symptoms helpfully and then patiently and nervously waited for her reply. She laughed and then blinked at me. I didn't get the joke. She assured me that the lemon is normal. Apparently most folk have it. Common as a cold. Just being up the duff. At first I thought she might be lying - trying to appease me while she ran 'tests.' But no, she was serious. In fact she looked at me like I was mad as a bag of snakes for not knowing about the lemon. Relieved, embarrassed and in a hurry to get far away from the unsympathetic Dr, I raced from the medical centre, silently cursing my female friends. They had told me of the nipples darkening, the heartburn to be expected, constipation - inevitable. But no fecker has ever mentioned the goddamn LEMON!

The Journey home...

You’ll never forget the journey home from hospital: the tender steps to the lift, (fearing that you won’t actually make it to the ground floor and beyond. And what lurks there? After 3 days inside you have forgotten that there is life outside your paisley patterned curtain). The Sister bearing down on you to check that you have the correct car seat or else your little bundle aint going nowhere. The fear that engulfs you as you realise there won’t be midwives there to answer your every question. What will you do now when bubs hollers? Beneath it all lies an overwhelming sense of relief that you will be back to your own nice clean bathroom, a well stocked fridge with edible food and your own TV to plonk yourself in front of. Most of all – there is your bed. Your bed. Comfy, inviting and calling you to a deep dark sleep – the likes of which you have failed to even imagine, stuck in ward 3B with other peoples’ children screeching all round you.
As you drive home you notice everything. The sun beats down through the windows, burning through your irises making everything feel raw and new. As you glance at the snuffling bundle next to you, strapped into something ten times bigger than him, you realise that you are newborn yourself. Oh not in that new age hippy dippy bolllocks way. No, for you my friend, nothing will ever be the same again. Having been inside the hospital chained to your bairn and bed for the past three days, everything feels new. Look – People! Cars! Sunshine! Shops! Worst of all – if your sprog drops in summer – people in beer gardens! Tip – don’t look. They are happy, carefree, with no responsibilities apart from remembering to keep taxi money in their back pocket to get home at 4am . You don’t belong in their world anymore.

The happiest day of your life???

The Birth

“Let us know if you feel the incision,” joked a gowned Spanish consultant who was busy thrusting her arms into wild contorted positions. Well, if there was ever a time for humour this was indeed it – lying prone, unable to see past my mahoosive breasts (never mind bump) with half shaven nether regions smiling up at the assembled throng of doctors and anaesthetists like a gleeful garden gnome who’d forgotten his hat. All I could see were blinding lights above me, a paddling pool style material that separated me from the horror film behind and my husband, resplendent in his ER scrubs and flattering blue shower cap. Earlier he’d commented dryly how he looked idiotic in it - like he even existed in the baby birthing experience! It was all I could do not to sock him one. If I’d been able to get up off the bed by myself I just might have. And there was me thinking I looked my best: pale, hair stuck to my sweaty head, hollow eyed, with two sacks of spuds hanging on either side of me (where my long lamented pert breasts had once pointed north) nipples as big and as hairy as peaches and zebra striped legs (on account of me only being able to shave certain bits). This was no Hello scene of serenity with diptique candles, warm water pools and The White Company cashmere rugs swaddling Mother and child. This was elephant woman on a slab, drugged to the eyeballs, looking out for a hot looking intern to flirt with.
I’d made friends with the anaesthetist already when she’d come to weigh me. When she asked if I would be part of a test they were running all to do with epidurals and blood pressure I had readily agreed – keep in the with those that control the drugs was my motto. She was my pusher and I, her keen disciple, was happy to do whatever she wanted me to – if she’d asked me to mop up the surgery floor when they were done, I’d have given it a shot. In theatre, before any of the fun and games had started, they had placed high tech looking instruments on my collarbone to measure my heart rate or something. To be honest, I wasn’t really listening. I was thinking about all the pink and glittery dainty wee girl’s outfits I’d be buying as soon as I could get into baby Gap. Isn’t that the real reason to have children? So we can fashion them into mini-mes and boast about them at parties when we’ve run out of stuff to talk about? Anyway, the epidural was in, it was stations a go-go and the damn pushers kept telling me to stay still. As if I had any say on the matter. They’re the ones that had drugged me up higher than a supermodel at a rock gig - they should know what dose to give me. There were concerned looks all round as my body began its own private dance. From tits down I was stone still but from the neck up I was a jerking freezing mess, grinding my jaws into a soft pulp with my free arm flailing like an unleashed hippy. Through chattering teeth I told husband “I feel like I’ve popped ten Es in the height of the summer of love.”
“Will you keep your voice down, you’re about to a Mother,” was his even frostier response.
It was all right for him. He knew what we were having. Week 21, scan number two, had revealed the big secret that he had been desperate to find out and I had been desperate not to know. I had left the room already in tune with my body and baby I didn’t need the nice scanner lady with frosted tips and squeaky shoes to confirm that the jumping bean was a girl. I never for one moment thought that it would be anything other than female. It would be a gorgeous beautiful baby girl and that’s all there was to it. It’s nothing against boys of course, I just don’t understand them – never have, never will. Their ability to only have one thought at a time, to retain trivial information on sport, to think with their penises or stomachs (depending on time of day and units of alcohol consumed) and their strange toilet habits. Aliens, the lot of them. Girls – now, I get girls: highly strung, seduced by sparkly things, obsessed with the ultimate handbag, pacified by cake, the eternal jugglers of life – having a baby girl would be a walk in the park. Just to be sure that my intuition wouldn’t let me down, I’d visited a fortune teller and got a police officer mate to grill husband politely at a mate’s BBQ. Both had come back positive that my little bundle would indeed be a pink one. During my prison sentence of a pregnancy, whenever someone had kindly declared they just knew I was having a boy, I would force a smile, nod indulgently and silently wish them a horrible death. I was smug and sure. My first born was to be a cherubic little girl.
“It’s a Lugerghh” I heard someone say as the Doctors root around my internal handbag had reached epic proportions and suddenly a huge weight lifted from me. I felt instantly thinner. I held my breath. I was about to meet her. I tried to lift my head and hear the sex. The fifteen strong team were too busy confabbing about something and my midwife had disappeared so I barked at the husband to let me in on the secret. “What is it?” I demanded, every muscle clenched (well the ones left that I had any control over – so maybe a bit of a frown).
“A boy!” Husband was triumphant.
I wanted to murder him. His eyes were all a-glow and he smiled that wonky smile that suggests there are tears to follow. I could hardly bear to look at him. At first I could see husband thought this was due to the enormity of this precious moment but as he began to register my beyond thunderous look, fear crossed his face and he realised my silence was simply containing an overwhelming rage.
“You made me think it was a girl.” I spat, gulping in case I cried.
“No… a boy,” he said somewhat unsteadily. He knew my tone all too well. It was the calm before the almighty storm.
All around me there was relief as said boy let out a huge roar. As the little mite announced his place in the world I was thinking I have just gone through 9 months of something akin to hell and all for a boy.
“Congratulations!” The Spanish consultant was delighted behind her mask. “I knew it was a boy!”
I seethed. All I could see were pink spotted tights, fairy costumes and deep crimson ribbons dancing away over the horizon. In their place muddy rugby shirts, bad smells and big spiky trucks were lumbering over the hill. Something was seriously wrong with this picture. This was not part of my plan. In fact this was as far from my plan as you could get. Husband had gone over to collect his spawn. As the blotchy bloodied bundle was wrapped in a yellow blanket husband had watched its eyes become accustomed to the light and asked the midwife in a shaky voice if his newborn was blind. Clearly he hadn’t bothered to read any birthing books whatsoever – mind you as I had refused ever to do birth, I couldn’t blame him.
He brought the grizzly bunny towards me and introduced the little fella to his Mother. A tear fell off the end of husband’s nose. Many tears fell off the inside of me as I stared at this strange mutant who had arrived to turn my world upside down. Was there instant bonding? In a word, no. Husband went to dress the baby and I lay there cursing his ability to double bluff me so well. Several times he had slipped up with the odd ‘she’ littered in his conversations – each one music to my ears and yet more confirmation that my longed for daughter was but weeks away. The room seemed to empty as a much smaller team worked their stitching magic, busier than Santa’s helpers on Xmas eve. I was still doing the shaky dance and waiting for the famous Motherhood hormones to kick in. I was a Mother. Nothing ever would define me so instantly again – not marriage, a degree, being blonde or the ability to win every game of 6 degrees of Kevin Bacon – I was a Mum and that was my new pigeon hole. Was I supposed to cry, feel a sudden understanding of why we are all on this tiny planet and instantly know every nursery rhyme backwards? Well I had skipped that gene for sure. Being wheeled to recovery all I could think - was how long would it be until my breasts would feel like mine again and could I drink lychee martinis if breast feeding? The bundle was finally placed in my arms and a busy looking midwife suggested that I might like to breast feed him now. ‘Like to’? I like to read magazines. I like thick clotted cream with anything. I like pedicures. Breast feeding was something I had to do, not because I ‘liked to.’
I flopped a breast out from under my dreary hospital gown. What a sad specimen it was. My son was meant to be enticed by that? I lifted his tiny head and pushed it in the general direction and low and behold he latched on and began to suck for all he was worth. I recoiled. His wee gums clamped down and rubbed my tender flesh in a motion that I’m sure 18th century torturers would have loved to have known. He smacked his lips and shut his eyes. “I think he's got some there!” the midwife encouraged and I felt like I had won an Olympic gold. I was an earth Mother after all...