Thursday, August 18, 2011

Other things as they occur to me

Whether it's interesting or not, these are my coping mechanisms and cheat sheet for life with a newborn, a toddler and you know all that LIFE STUFF. DrMr and I don't have family in Melbourne that we can rely on, so we kind of have to make do on our own and improvise.

1. I think find the small things that make you feel in control, for me it's doing the dishes and making the beds. It makes me feel like I have my shit together, when in reality I DO NOT. I certainly don't want to imply that I do.

2. Steal all the ideas that your friends use to cope with their life and kids. I have a lovely new friend with THREE very small children, and I feel like I grill and barrage her with questions and then steal all those ideas and recipes and mske them my own.

3. Be kind to yourself as things will settle down. Yesterday was a particularly hideous day home alone with the two and I let Rubes watch ABC2 from when she got up till about 11:30 or so (her nap time, which lasted for three hours). I have a terribly overdeveloped guilt complex about everything, so I try and let that go.

4. When I say I am cooking 4 dinners this week, please understand that they are the quickest and easiest things I can find. I have planned for this week - lamb cutlets, pre-marinated honey and soy chicken sticks, pre-marinated salmon and sausages. These will be served with salad (and I have bought the pre-packaged one), mashed potato (one of the few vegies Rubes will eat, but once you add butter and milk, is it still a healthy vegetable? Rhetorical question that one), broccoli, beans, frozen corn and peas. Anything that can be chucked in with the potatoes I am boiling ready to mash. I am HOPING to roast some sweet potato this week as it's my favourite, but I am not tied to it. I consider all of this cooking. I DO also consider making toasted sandwiches cooking and will not hear otherwise. Don't get me wrong, I DO own a ridiculous amount of cookbooks that I like to browse and fantasise that I would be motivated to cook them one day, or more likely that Maggie Beer is my mama and Nigella my best friend and both adore cooking for me ALL THE TIME.

5. I make sure without fail that I have one-on-one Mama and Ruby time every day, even if it's just for half an hour of undivided and Lola-free attention, when I am not thinking about how revolting that dog smell is and how the start of mould growing in the laundry from additional dryer use is freaking me out. Yesterday we made little people out of toilet rolls and this morning we had a picnic on the kitchen with popcorn and water and played games. There are now pom poms and googly eyes all over the house, but it kind of matches with the ground up bits of popcorn and cornflakes in the carpet. i was looking at the carpet before and thinking I would photograph it to show you but shame got the better of me.

6. I get groceries delivered online. It's $9 in delivery fees but priceless in the lack of pain and trauma in taking the family to the shops. It also gives me the chance to meal plan. I tried a toddler meal delivery place which is not too expensive, but Rubes is so fussy she didn't eat any of the meals.

7. I have been to the shops with just the newborn in a pram or sling, but when I said I have been shopping for new things for me, it's all online. Mostly because it's significantly cheaper, but also because I do hate shopping. The internet is your friend in this regard, I have bought all sorts of things recently, while in bed and a baby on my breast. Often via eBay on my mobile phone at 3am.

Things that are not in control - the house REEKS of dog as I can't remember the last time he had a bath and he is old and stinky. I am still obsessed with the Eucalyptus Oil spray to cover it up. I do need to vacuum every few days with dog hair and toddler crumbs, but I only go as far as I can without removing the cord, which fortunately is the lounge, kitchen, hallway and entrance to bedrooms. I respond very late to any emails. Breastfeeding is kicking my arse at the moment as I have a too rapid letdown, which makes Lola come on and off all throughout a feed and has led to blood and milk blisters on my nipples, blocked ducts and just PAIN. Nothing I can do (apart from change positions, feed from one side at a time etc) until Lola gets a bit older to be able to keep up and appreciate her mama as the milk making goddess she is. All the coming on and off is giving her terrible wind though. And have you seen those chubby cheeks and thighs? Baby likes to feed. Having trouble getting the kids in bed and properly asleep before 9 and I collapse into bed soon after. I wish I was getting more exercise, make that any exercise. DrMr told me he has to teach tomorrow, Wednesday night and next Saturday which brought tears to my eyes as I value our weekends together and countdown to the days when there is an extra pair of hands in the house. After a long night feeding last night, I got to sleep in until 10 as well as given toast and tea in bed. I love that man.


Amy said...

Hello mama.

You are doing one hell of a very important job, and doing well too, I might say..

One thing on the feeding - have you tried feeding her lying down? If it's still too fast on your side - lay on your back. I know it sounds wierd and strange - but it might help the flow chill out a bit. Ended up about the only way that I fed my 3rd until we got our feet about ourselves!

Tea and toast in bed sounds divine.

Erin said...

sweet cake,

i hope you're off enjoying your weekend with fam...and that resting is involved. try to remember everything needs to go second to taking care of your babies, and you, and the doctor, and george. it's ok if the house stinks right now. it's ok if things are out of control. it won't be forever. i love you and you're doing an excellent job!! xoxo

Freckled Sparrow said...

I totally hear you lady! Dishes and the bed are things I like to try and do too. If I can squeeze a shower in as well it makes me feel ace. One thing that really helps my 5 week old now is a swing and white noise. She loves it and it helps me get some lunch :) I agree with Erin too. We gotta look after ourselves and our little families first. I've had some nasty drama with my mother and have realised time with my little lady is too precious to waste on trivial stuff. Sounds like you are doing a fab job! Keep up the good work :) xxxx
PS. My word verification is Dingled. Bit like my brain right now!