Zaki. Does. Not. Sleep. Honestly, he hardly ever sleeps. I’ve never heard of a baby like it. This photo was taken at 10pm and he was showing no signs of going off to the land of nod anytime soon. I finally got him to sleep at 11.30pm but he was awake again at 2am for 2 hours.
In the daytime he barely naps, in fact he naps less than his 2 year old brother! I’ve tried to make him nap more because I’ve heard that ‘the more they sleep, the more they sleep’, but it didn’t work. I’ve tried to make him last the day with no sleep at all and that didn’t work either.
He’s never grumpy from being over-tired, never cries because he wants to go to sleep. If I didn’t rock him for an hour and force him to drift off I don’t think he’d ever actually sleep!
Has anyone else had a baby like this? Was there any reason behind it? I just don’t understand it. Sleep is the best, sleep is my favourite, why won’t he sleep?!
I blame Instagram for this whole sorry ordeal. I see amazing photos on there every day of families having lovely times in various lovely places with their lovely children. All so happy. All so calm. Ha ha ha, how they all laugh and frolick! Such fun!
Cut to me bundling the kids into the car, wellies packed, picnic sorted, we’re going to the beach, we’re going to have a nice time. Such fun!
Although it was January, the weather was very mild and the tide was out. Perfect. Omar could burn off some energy running on the sand, eat his picnic and then get home exhausted enough to want an early night.
I managed to get him and the pram onto the sand then let go of his hand and let him run. Here’s what went down.
Basically, he gravitated towards a huge pool of water under the pier and more or less had a swim whilst simultaneously whinging because it was freezing and manky. I then had to wade in and drag him out because despite the whinging he refused to get up.
Obviously feeling he wasn’t in quite enough of a mess he then rolled around in the sand to ensure his soaking clothes were also caked in the stuff. Again, he refused to get up so I had to wrestle him and the pram to the car.
We got home and I was the only exhausted one. Instagram lies.
Today I finally sorted out the box of things from when Zaki was in intensive care. They’ve been packed away ever since we got home and I know it sounds silly but I couldn’t bring myself to go through them, the thought of it made me feel hot and sick. I think I didn’t want to go back there emotionally and I was worried that seeing his clothes and all the other bits and bobs from that time would take me straight back.
It wasn’t as bad as I thought though and I’m glad I’ve finally done it.
I jazzed Zaki’s hospital cot up with that cloud garland and those mittens were a gift from a very good friend, who crocheted them herself. The soft toy was one of many I ordered from John Lewis while sat at his bedside because I was fretting his cot looked bare compared to the other babies. Seems ridiculous now.
So that’s my photo for today. Think yourself lucky it’s not another sleeping kid shot!
Being a stay at home mum was never part of my plan. I spent a lot of time, energy and money becoming a qualified solicitor. I had grand plans. I’d be a city girl, a high flyer wearing designer threads as I slayed my opponents in court before marching out in my Jimmy Choos. (Look, I am a socialist but I like nice stuff too, ok?)
Anyway, the plan started to go a bit wrong when I moved from a city to my small home town and cut my legal teeth at a high street firm here. What followed was marriage and a baby. And then another.
And now I’m a stay at home mum. Not a Jimmy Choo in sight. (What’s the point? They’d only get covered in crayon and milk spit up.)
Going back to work (as in paid work – we all know raising kids is still actual work) is something I think about a lot. I suppose I’ve never really gotten comfortable with being defined as only a mother. Yes, that’s my most important job, raising humans is a big deal and a lot of responsibility. Not just to them but to the world (I don’t want to rear psychopaths then let them loose to wreak havoc on civilisation one day, obviously). But to let it be my only job doesn’t sit well with me. I suppose I feel the need to have something just for myself, if that makes any kind of sense.
Please don’t mistake this for me having no respect for stay at home mums (and dads for that matter) and their decision to stay at home out of choice. I get how important it is for some people and judge them in no way. Some stay at home mum’s thrive but I’m not one of them; I’m crap at baking and I don’t have a crafty bone in my body.
So I’ve explored going back to work. I’ve looked into the childcare options. I’ve worked out pick up and drop off times. And here’s the thing; no one would benefit from it except for me.
If I worked locally I would have to drop the kids off at childcare at 8am and collect them at 6pm (maybe 5.30pm at a push). So that’s ten hours a day they would be in someone else’s charge. That’s the vast majority of their waking hours. After childcare it would be home, dinner, bed, bath – I’d barely see them. And that’s if I actually finished work when I was supposed to. Most lawyers take work home with them to finish as well, it’s the nature of the job. Yes, I’d have weekends, but that’s about it.
The cost of 50 hours per week for childcare for two children would be around £460 per week. Despite popular opinion the average high street lawyer doesn’t make a huge amount of money, which means it would actually cost me financially to go back to work. If I worked part time, it would still cost me.
The other option is if I worked out of town. The nearest two cities are just over an hour’s commute away. Totally doable. My salary would be a fair bit higher but I’d spend even less time with the kids. I’d may as well get a live in nanny. Which just makes me think, why did I have them in the first place if I’m going to let other people raise them? And as well as the live in nanny I’d doubtless need a cleaner, otherwise I’d be spending those precious weekends cleaning and ironing and what not.
So to go back to work it seems I would have to either make my family generally poorer or outsource most other parts of my life (and possibly still make us poorer). And as the only person who would benefit from me working is me, I really can’t justify it. It would just be selfish.
I chose to have my children, a decision I’ve never for a second regretted, so if that means I’m a stay at home mum for a while then so be it. The Jimmy Choos will just have to wait.
Strange old day today consisting of a funeral and a kid’s party. Pain and sorrow from weary souls, followed by absolute delight and excitement from fresh, innocent tots.
Here’s a photo from the latter portion of the day:
It pains me to think that a day will come when he will know pain and sorrow. I mean he thinks he knows it now (for example when I confiscate his football because he’s launched it at his brother for the sixth time that morning) but I hope any real heartache is years and years and years away, if it ever has to come at all.