Children, Friends & Family, Life, Parenting
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5 things I thought I’d always remember… but don’t

My nephews came to us for a sleepover recently and for one whole night, I had an additional 5-year old and a 2-year old to look after. It was brilliant fun and they were no trouble at all, however I did get an insight into what it might be like to have 3 children and have a brand new respect for those who do.

I was not too worried about the 5-year old, because I also have one of those and believe most problems can be easily resolved with food, a quick run around the garden, or Star Wars.  The 2-year old on the other hand came with a nappy changing bag, bottles, formula, dummies and instructions on how to prevent him rolling out of bed.

I looked at the bottle and to the little container of formula. Then back to the bottle again.

“Just one before bed” his dad told me.

I lost count of how many bottles of milk I made up for my own son when he was a baby. Sometimes 5 or 6 a day, I think.  I could prepare them in my sleep and quite often did. But when I looked at the little kit in front of me, my mind was completely blank and I had absolutely no idea what I was supposed to do. NONE.

How can something that for a couple of years was such an important routine in our lives be completely erased from memory.

There are other things that I thought I would never forget too, but how quickly we do…

Childbirth

I was in labour for 36-hours and although I do remember that it really hurt, I can’t actually imagine what that kind of pain feels like anymore.  Admittedly, I was on some very strong painkillers, which can make up for some of the lost time, but mostly I just remember feeling very tired. And, we all know that is just nature’s way of ensuring we all go on to have more children!

How to look after a young baby

I’m sure if I was ever to be in charge of one again I’d work it all out, but if someone handed me a newborn right now, I’d hold him in my arms as tentatively as an older sibling giving her new baby brother his first cuddle.

I would need reminding about sleep schedules, nappy changes and the right angle to position a bottle.  I look back now and think he just slept all day, right? But at the time, it felt like there was so much more to it than that.

Working full-time

I worked full-time for over 20-years.  I got up at 7am every morning, got dressed ‘up’ and made my way into an office in central London.  I crammed onto busy tubes, stood in line at bus stops and walked uncomfortably in shoes that were probably better designed for stepping in and out of cars. I sat at a desk, chatted to colleagues and went out for lunch. I organised things for other people all day long and I loved it. This was my life for many years and one which I happily went back to following the birth of my son. But, I was exhausted and I missed my boy. I wanted to be home more and so I swapped my commute for a 5-min school run, ditched the heels and bought some flats.  For almost 2-years now, I’ve been in my school mum bubble and can’t remember the stress or the guilt that weighed so heavily on me during that time.  When I look back, I do so fondly, but it’s almost like it happened to someone else.

My 18th Birthday

I cannot remember how I celebrated my 18th birthday.  I can vividly remember what I did on other big milestones – the fancy dress party I threw on my 21st, the group dinner for my 30th, and the joint party I had with my 4-year old for my 40th. But my 18th is a mystery to me.

Being a vegetarian

Apparently, I was one for a couple of years in my early 20s! Someone recently reminded me of this and I was shocked I could forget something that mattered such a great deal to me at the time. Me a vegetarian! Who would have thought it – don’t tell Yiayia!

I am sure there are many more things that I don’t even remember not remembering.

What’s the biggest thing you have ever forgotten?

*****

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