Happy Halloween


Sometimes you read something that stops you in your tracks and makes you feel like you are wasting your life/not noticing the wood for the trees. I feel like this most of the time as on one level I know I should chill out more and just enjoy life and on another level I have literally no idea how to do this. The other day I read on Facebook a post that basically guilt-tripped the reader into feeling bad about not being happy in the present moment (because, you know, we always want something else to happen for us to be happy and then when that happens there is always something else, etc etc…. yes I know but…)

Today was Halloween (hence the title of this post). I suppose today is still technically Halloween. I bought a bucket of candy sweets but we have had no trick-or-treaters (not suprising really considering our location and the general hysteria of many British people towards the concept, but I have to admit I expected at least one group of half-heartedly costumed teenagers angling for a cheeky pound coin).

Having organised the obligatory Halloween party (which consisted of my stepdad and brothers watching the rugby World Cup in costume, my mum and I talking about houses me going on to my mum about a house we went and looked at this morning whilst maintaining a wide-berth from my youngest son whom I am attempting to wean off of the breastmilk, and my zombie-first-born eating more sweets than is good for him) and got the kids to bed, I sit down and read this article about how the “early years” are crap but the rest is even worse.

Yeah. Thanks. Seriously made me laugh though. Why can’t I appreciate what I have, which is a helluva lot?

I was going to be happy when we had new carpet and lino. That time has been and gone. Now I am obsessed about getting on the property ladder, having some storage/outside space, possibly going on holiday sometime, and being able to sleep through the night without being used as a human pacifier.

Every night I say “goodnight baby” to my eldest son and kiss him. I have been doing this since we moved to this house from America. That was three years ago. He is no longer strictly-speaking, a baby. He is a wiry bundle of attitude who alternately amazes me and tests my patience. He is 5 going on 15 and I know I will miss this. I say goodnight to him and I have already seen his face change from the chubby (sort of) toddler face to the leaner and more learned school-kid face he has now. I picture saying goonight to him when he is 15. I can almost see it. Me sneaking into his room like a crazy person, whispering goodnight to my “baby” who is anything but.

But for today, the “hell of the early years” is this:

  • hearing “but what is there to do?” “what can I do?” “so what are we going to do now?” ad nauseum whenever the TV/Wii is turned off.
  • Having a baby all but surgically attached to my nipple every night and waking up feeling like Dracula himself had been visiting me in my sleep (so hungry/thirsty/grumpy!)
  • My husband making me an omelette and sending M upstairs while L fussed in his play pen and I stood and cried by the kitchen sink because… Dracula baby.  So hungry/grumpy (thank goodness my husband knows how to deal with my hangry side).
  • Making a Halloween party and zombie costume for M and then hearing the following:

“I wanted the party to be at Grandma’s.”

“These pockets feel weird.” [Me: they’re just pockets. Either you wear the costume or you don’t. It is just a regular pair of trousers] “But they feel WEIRD. Can’t someone cut them out?” *daddy cuts the pockets out of the trousers* “These trousers are too loose!” *daddy tightens the waist elastic* “These trousers are too tight!” *Fights urge to band head against wall. Possibly threatens cancellation of party if whining about trousers does not cease immediately*

And obsessing about the house we saw this morning. How all our problems will be solved once we have storage/outside space/a foot on the property “ladder.”

But then we don’t have any problems. We have two beautiful, if demanding in the way that all children are, little boys and the rest is just so much stuff. But then it is hard to remember that when, as happened yesterday, you start the day with:

“Ah… something is wet, can you look ’cause I don’t have my glasses on… is it wee or poo?”

“It’s poo… all over!”

“Aaargh! You take him and put him in the bath and I’ll strip the bed. Oh no it’s all up by the pillows and all on my trousers *fumble for glasses, glance at alarm… 6am… wash sheets/bath baby before even a cup of tea let alone food*