Tonight is the night. I am actually going out for the first time in nine months, two weeks and three days. By going out I mean:
- no Peanut
- no schlepping around a supply of nappies and a gigantic changing bag
- wearing very insensible shoes
- wearing an outfit without having to ask myself first: “How easy is it going to be to get my boob out and shove it into Peanut’s mouth?”
As I am standing at the door saying goodbyes BlueBeretDad is giving Peanut a bath. Actually, judging by the amount of foam and water over the Big Man it is the other way round.
“So, are you sure you are ok? Remember to put on the big nappy for the night. Big nappy. The other ones leak.”
“I know” says BlueBeretDad.
“And try to keep him awake for another 15 minutes or he will be up at five. Do you think you can manage?”
“Bye bye bye bye” Peanut does the two-handed version of the royal wave and I lock the door behind me.
As I walk towards the restaurant to meet my book club chums I wonder whether this time we are actually going to discuss the book. Hope not as I haven’t read mine – Peanut ate my book is my excuse tonight. A few visions of Peanut accidentally drowning in the bath and BlueBeretDad accidentally climbing into the toilet (or was it the other way round?) later I wave at my fellow book – clubbers. In my pocket the mobile starts vibrating to the familiar Psycho tune.
“Hi it’s me. Is the milk supposed to be 28 degrees?” my Other Half says.
“What? I don’t know.”
“What?” I say.
“The milk. Too hot. How do I know it is not too hot before he drinks it?”
“Two ways – one is to drink a bit of it. Or give it to Peanut and see what happens – don’t recommend it. “ I say.
“Whaaaaaahaaaaaaaaaaaawhawhahwahwah” Patrick expresses his view on the problem.
“Nevermind. Do you want me to come back?”
“No. Have fun. Bye”
The last one to arrive I sink my butt onto the comfy chair and let out a heavy sigh. But before I manage to say “I need a drink” the mobile starts jumping around the table “Yeah, I know, that psychotic Psycho ringtone. Now that I have a child I will change it.”
BlueBeretDad on the line:
“His sleeping bag is not in his cot.”
“Right. Did you check in our bed?”
“No” the floor creaks and I realise that I can tell exactly where he is.
“Found it. Ok. Have fun.”
“Bye” He is gone.
Five margaritas later I stumble back home. Had a great time with the girls and no, we never got round to discussing the book. As I slowly climb the stairs to our flat I start thinking about things that I used to do and never really appreciated until Peanut came along:
- Painting my nails – now it is a military operation planned six months in advance. Very risky no matter how well I map out the strategy. Have already ended up with Peanut’s fingerprints on my otherwise “immaculate” nail varnish a few times. Well, 16 years to go…
- General de-fuzzing – could previously take hours contemplating every millimetre of my calves and making sure every hair follicle was annihilated. Now it is a supersonic job – roughly five seconds per leg done while Peanut alternates between trying to force the shower door open while I keep on blocking it with my free elbow and /or knee and trying to stick his hand, head and the rest of his tiny body into the toilet bowl. More often than not my “used to be so smooth” legs are covered in fuzzy islands. I’m so glad I live in Scotland as chances of me getting out with bare legs in the next 10 years are 0.1%.
- Having a hot drink/soup/anything even close to lukewarm.
- Writing emails undisturbed by Peanut banging furiously on my keyboard and therewith activating stuff on my laptop I had no idea existed.
- Reading a book/newspaper without anyone trying to eat half of it.
- Having a shower on my own.
- Being in the toilet on my own without a mini human being finding whatever business is going on there so hilarious he has to take a closer look.
- Having an uninterrupted conversation with another adult.
- Sleep. Sleep. Sleep.
- Wearing black cloths without a risk of them being covered in snot, spit and stains (mainly food) within two seconds of me putting them on. I am the ultimate yummy mummy, ask the Edinburgh seagulls.
- Did I mention sleep? Sleep in any position possible. Anywhere. Just sleep.
Things on this list that I was extremely bothered about in my pre-Peanut life: all of the above.
Before I wobble, fall over and fall asleep on the floor in the hallway I hear BlueBeretDad’s big snore followed by a mini snore coming from the nursery.
Things on this list that I am extremely bothered about now that Peanut is here: none.