couples

Evil things I want to say to new mums

So here’s the thing. I may or may not have written a post  about how it’s really not very nice to judge other mums. “We’re all just trying our best”, I sweetly offered up.  It was supposed to be a cool salve to the burning cheeks of mortified mothers holding tantruming toddlers in grocery stores everywhere.  That article may or may not have prompted a few discussions about how we can all help each other out.  Give mums a break, and all.  Lovely people responded with lovely comments, and I was SO proud of all of us mums… lifting each other up, loving ourselves for our flaws…

I have a confession to make.

Sometimes I think REALLY TERRIBLE THINGS about other mums.  Mean, spiteful, hateful, “I hope your future baby has colic and you end up wearing schleppy mum clothes and driving carpool with cheerios stuck to the bottom of your slippers” type of thoughts. There. I said it.

I’m so sorry. I do feel strongly about not judging other mums. I do think that we should shower each other in flowery goodness.

Most of the time. Except for right this moment.

How ’bout I just go for it, and hope that you don’t hate me in the morning?

Today Max and I were squabbling enjoying lunch together at the local coffee shop.  A pregnant woman (who looked very cute in her trendy maternity clothes) was quietly sipping her decaf latte, enjoying her time by herself, when Max decided to climb on the back of the booth and reach over to the light switch.  And turn the lights off in the entire cafe.  Repeatedly.  Until I hissed “If you turn the lights off again we WILL LEAVE.  Do you understand?? I am NOT kidding.” And she glared at me.  And did one of those “quiet clucks” with her mouth.  Clearly her imaginary mothering was WAY better than mine.  Until I pathetically offered up my very best developmentally-appropriate Mummy response of ”Max honey, we need to leave the lights on so that our friends in the cafe can see.  They need to see to eat their lunch sweetie.”  And I packed up our food to go, and we walked ran out the door as she pretended not to watch us.  So here’s a few hints for you Peaceful Decaf Pregnant Lady:

1.  Enjoy that leisurely cup of coffee.  It may be the last one you ever have…I mean, the last one you’ll ever enjoy without having to stop your kid from dumping blueberries all over the floor of the restaurant, because he wants to watch them roooooolllll.  And then when you go to throw them all away in the bin across the room, he yells “But I waaaaant the bue-bewwies!” And then he crawls underneath the table and eats the lonely one that got away…..before you can stop him….while proudly exclaiming “Look mummy!  I a puppy!”  Savor that foamy cup of young 20-something identity, lady. In about a month, you won’t even remember this life.

2.  Oh and guess what?  Your precious new baby won’t sleep.  Your baby will probably NEVER sleep.  You will never have a leisurely Sunday morning AGAIN.  So stop spouting off your theories about The Happiest Baby on The Block and how you plan on sleep training/cry it out/gentle sleep learning.  It’s a book.  And we used it to prop up one end of Max’s crib.  And even that didn’t work.  None of it will work.  Babies, by nature, don’t always sleep.  Because they’re little.  And hungry.  And can’t talk.  You can’t train it out of ‘em.  And maybe, if you’re lucky, your baby won’t sleep until sometime during their first year of PRESCHOOL.  Why?  As Max would say “BECAUSE”.  (I love the mums on my favourite attachment parenting hippie crunchy mummy forum. They put up with my recent vent about how formula doesn’t always help babies sleep through the night. And then I offered up to them that I sometimes feel compelled to yell at brand new mums who are crying over their 6 week old non-sleeping babies “They’re not SUPPOSED to sleep at this age!  And they may NEVER sleep!  Hahahahahaha!  Welcome to parenthood bitches!!!” Which is really so attachment/loving/hippie crunchy of me, isn’t it?)

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….which brings me to my next evil point…..

2.  When you get pregnant, there’s a good chance you will be HUUUUGE.  The hilarious Carinn at  Welcome To The Motherhood  (which is a PERFECT name for a blog by the way, and I find myself stealing using her catchphrase often, while adding “bitches”) welcomed Jessica Simpson to the motherhood recently.   I felt compelled to share my congratulations snarky mama love with her, and broke my “be kind and lift y’all up” pledge by commenting that the pregnant Jessica Simpson was HUUUUGE.  There.  I said it.  And of course I mean it in the nicest way.  When you are baking a baby in your BODY, you are going to grow!  You’re supposed to get bigger!  It’s not fat, it’s baby-making weight!  You can not grow another human being by existing solely on a macrobiotic diet of all green food.  You can’t.  And shame on the celebrities who offer that up to the rest of us as normal.   When I was pregnant with Max I ate jalepeno poppers on a very regular basis. Filled with cream cheese and then deep fried.  And we ordered them with a side of pizza.  I was a little lot shocked when Max came screaming into this world at 2.8kg however.  Because where were the other 15kg that I had gained???????  Pregnant bodies are beautiful.  And Jessica Simpson may have eaten a few jalepeno poppers.  God bless her.

3.  When you have a child, your wardrobe changes. Drastically. You will learn quickly, after a major diaper explosion blow-out on your favorite sweater, that it makes much more sense to buy your clothes from Target. Dark clothes. And flat shoes. I learned this the hard way.  And right about the time that the liquid baby poop stops, the toddler fingerpaints/yogurt/muddy handprints/flourescent playdough starts.  You’re just a walking collage of your child’s day from now on. Supre is cheap.  Trendy enough that every once in a while you’ll get asked “Are you the mum, or the Nanny?”.  Buying a new white flowy bohemian blouse there insures you won’t feel guilty when you throw it in the trash instead of hand-washing the vomit out of it.  (Sidenote:  Sean just said “Babe, that’s not true.  You wear cute outfits still!  Like those new bright blue pants.”  I love him.  I love that he lets me walk around saying that I’m a MILF, even though he did tell Max to ask me where the battery pack for my pants was.  They were a little bright.  But that’s cool, right?  They were $69.  Please don’t tell him.)

4.  Whatever you name your kid, people will f#@k it up.  How complicated is “Max”?  It’s not.  Except we constantly get “Is it Maxwell?  Maximillion?” and Sean’s favorite “Oh, HI MAXIE!”  My husband will go all Jersey on you if you use a nickname for his son.  That’s why we called him something easy, like Max. Thank you very much Jessica Simpson for naming your new daughter Maxwell, to be called Maxi.  Because that makes sense?!  You’re [email protected]#king it up for the rest of us.  Oh, and congratulations. I’m so glad that you had a nearly 10lb baby, because you have a much better excuse than I did for gaining 20 40 pounds.

5.  Holding your very sweet, very red, very squishy, tiny little newborn in  your arms will change your life.  Your baby will rock your world, your wardrobe, your sex life, and your sleep cycle.  And if you’re lucky, when you have an (almost) three year old who spills water all over the floor of a cafe while reaching over to empty out the container that holds 37 packets of Splenda, there won’t be any snarky mums like me looking over your shoulder to say “I told you so”.

Because that wouldn’t be very helpful now, would it?

You can read more from Kim Simon at mamabythebay.com. She is currently a blogger for The Huffington Post. In addition to writing about family, Kim's background in Social Work (working with families who have experienced domestic violence, trauma, sexual assault, and adoption) remains a huge part of her identity.  Her writing often reflects social and political issues that she is passionate about, and she always welcome the opportunity to speak to new audiences.

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