I MUST tell you about the one night that I had to myself! I don’t know if it will happen again any time soon so I’m just going to keep reminiscing.
Since I had my son just over 5 months ago I really hadn’t had any time to myself. I’d been lugging a 2-year-old mini diva and a very clingy mummy’s boy around with me pretty much everywhere!
I’m quite vocal about my needs and thought I had made it very clear to my family how difficult it was to never have a second to just relax, go for a poo in peace, or just wake up of my own accord ONE TIME.
It was like I was delusional to suggest that I might need 1 night of sleep out of the 161 nights that I had spent being woken up at least 4 times by baby J, followed by “I WANT CEREAL” being yelled at me through the bedroom wall.
The usual responses to my pleads were:
“Other women have two children and they just get on with it!”
“Well I had 3 children and I got up at 4am every morning to hand wash their clothes.”
These responses made me feel like the biggest failure IN LIFE. But it didn’t change the fact that I was exhausted, irritable and starting to hate everyone (except my kids) and everything (except biscuits and wine). A couple of weeks ago my mum actually offered to take the kids overnight so that I could get a good nights sleep. But guess what?
I’m used to my toddler staying over at Nanny’s, but I have this overbearing bond and attachment to my baby boy and I blame it on breastfeeding. Even though I thought I was at my wit’s end – I just couldn’t let him go. The thought of him not being there caused major separation anxiety. So I suffered a couple more weeks of being forcibly woken and sitting, breastfeeding in the middle of the night with my back bent almost completely in half because my head was so heavy.
By then, I was going crazy. I cried a lot just because I needed to SLEEP… just once.
So I called mum and told her to take them.
I think the kids sensed that I was getting rid of them because they both cried for about an hour before they went to my mum’s. The were doing my absolute nut in! I had gone passed the point of trying to comfort them, I just felt numb to it all and was counting down the seconds to freedom. To be honest, their behaviour just made it easier for me to leave them and not look back – so thank you kids, you did me a favour without realising.
That night was SO BEAUTIFUL!!!
I booted the toys into the corner, sat on my sofa (without being climbed on), had a dominos pizza all to myself – while it was hot! – and watched my TV.
That was just the warm up…
I thought I’d just want to get into bed after that but then AL came in from work and was like “shall we go for a drink?”
It only takes me one drink to get p*ssed these days so I knew that even if we went out, there would still be plenty of time for sleep. We didn’t get very far. We literally transported from our sofa to the sofa in the bar downstairs from our flat. But it was still nice to get out – because we could!
When he went to order the drinks, there was a little part of me that thought “sh*t! we haven’t been alone together in a while… what are we going to talk about? It’s lame to talk about baby J’s vomit when he’s not even here!
But, before I’d even sipped the wine – conversation started flowing and before I knew it I was laughing A LOT.
I’d forgotten how funny he is. And I realised how much our relationship had taken a back seat since having our children. The thought made a little bit sad but I was more so happy that we were still able to chill together and have a laugh – just like before.
We were slowly becoming more and more horizontal on that sofa so we decided to call it a night and head back up to the flat. I slid into bed, it seemed warmer and softer than usual (probably due to the wine), then AL came into the bedroom with music blasting out of his phone and I almost hissed “shut the f*ck up!” but then realised that there was no baby in the room, no baby in the flat. So… we could make as much noise as we wanted *wink-wink* and we did. More than once.
Sleeping for 8 hours was flaming incredible, I felt limber and blissful! And SNUGGLE TIME!! We haven’t done that in years! Being able to cuddle in bed in the morning for as long as you want (or until you get stuck to each other with sweat). We went out for breakfast, I came home and had a mother ducking NAP! I actually laughed hysterically to myself because I could actually do whatever I wanted (such a sad-o).
But… all good things must come to an end.
When I got to mum’s – you should have seen it! She had one shoe on. There was spaghetti down the bed, clothes flung all over the kitchen. My daughter had the waste paper bin on her head. Mum actually said to me “I feel sorry for you! AND my back hurts!”
It’s bad of me, but seeing my mum struggling a bit with the kids made me feel smug because I actually manage to wash and make it out of the house with them most days. I feel that now she truly understands my situation, and will hopefully have a little more empathy towards me in future if I’m growling down the phone or if I take 6 hours to text back. I know now that I’m not lazy or a failure, that looking after a toddler and a baby really is difficult and that mums should NOT feel guilty about leaving the kids and being free for one night.
We bloody deserve it!
This post first appeared on www.meetothermums.com