Most expectant new mums would have been told by the “been theres” that there are days when you don’t find time to shower. This sounds crazy when you haven’t been there. You mean you couldn’t find two minutes in your day to shower? Doesn’t the baby sleep all the time? What was wrong with you?
New mums are always told to stop stressing about getting the basics done, sleep when the baby sleeps and just do whatever you need to do to get through the day. I mostly agree, except for when it comes to showering. Have a shower! I’m not a hygiene freak, it’s just that having a shower each morning makes you feel soooooo good, like a normal person (with clean pits!)
Even now, with my youngest at 16 months, I sometimes use my morning shower to give myself a much-needed pep talk. Into the shower goes a broken woman, bogged down by sleep deprivation and a long list of crap she needs to achieve that day. Out of the shower comes a whole new person, with enthusiasm, a clear head and clean pits!
I needed a pep talk on Saturday morning, following a hellish night. It started off good. My husband and I went to a fancy dress party, dolled up as contestants from Beauty and The Geek. We had oodles of fun and lots of laughs and arrived home happy and excited about the weekend ahead. Ten minutes later we were sucked into “sick baby” hell and the night dragged on endlessly as we tried to nurse Annie through hours of vomiting, diarrhoea, bed changes and misery.
In the dark depths of night I had what I call the “4am freak out” which is when I accept I’m getting no sleep that evening and start worrying about how I’m going to get through the next day. Our Saturday was packed, with a three-year-old’s birthday party, a cat to pick up following surgery and the General Election. Through a haze of broken sleep, piles of washing and the toddler waking up bright as a button at 6am, it all seemed impossible.
Into the shower for a pep talk. I could do this. I’d been running around like a Madhatter for three years now, regardless of how much sleep I’d gotten the previous night. Today was just like every other day. I would get Henry to that party while Tim looked after Annie. I would pick up the cat from the vet and we would both find time to vote.
You know how the contestants on Stars In Their Eyes used to be transformed into entirely new people right before your very eyes? That is how I feel when I emerge from the shower. I have left Negative Nancy and her can’t-do attitude in there and I am revved up and ready to go.
We got to the party and had a ball with my always-fun friends and their adorable offspring. Henry had one of the best mornings on record, getting his face painted like Batman and meeting a real life fairy. I picked up the cat, complete with a cone on his head, a shaved patch on his leg and a pissed off look on his face. And we both got to the polling booth to cast our votes.
That much-dreaded Saturday was a success, except for one small mistake where we took Annie to vote, thinking she was better because hours had passed without an “incident”. Surely we could nip down the road and quickly vote together. Big mistake. We ended up in the bushes outside the local primary school, with our daughter powerchucking in front of a crowd. We think the poor little lamb saw someone vote for Colin Craig…