#40: Bad Day at the Office, Dear?

#40: Bad Day at the Office, Dear?
5 minutes to read

We’re not having a good day, us three females. I don’t know what it is, but we’re all crotchety and on a bit of a short fuse. We’re too bloody similar, that’s half the problem – even at a few months old I can tell that Moo is cut from the same cloth as me and Mouse, rather than having the wholly sweet-natured and gentle disposition of her dad.

On these days, the sheer drudgery and monotony of life with small people kind of feels like quick sand, coupled with a nagging sense of excruciating guilt because I’m not enjoying being a mum. Being a mum is a gift and an honour and it feels like a real weakness in character to admit that no, actually, today I just miss my old life.

I look at my phone and see a message from my husband. “How’s your day? How are the girls? Xx”

I thrash out my reply at lightning speed. “My day is fucking shit, I’m so sick of this. It’s exhausting me, I hate breastfeeding and I don’t want them touching me, all the time.” No kisses, for dramatic effect. No warmth from this quarter.

Then I hastily delete the words I’ve typed because I realise that if we have another broken limb incident (er, see this one for that tomfoolery) and Social Services / the Boys in Blue confiscate my phone and read my angry messages, they might bang me up.

“Yeah my day is ok. Just off to the park. Moo has done two big poos. How are you? Shall we get some wine for tomorrow night? Xx”

That’s better. That makes me sound normal, just erring on the right side of tired and downtrodden. I won’t put three kisses because then he’ll expect sexual activities.

5pm limps around like a retiring carthorse. My husband gets in at 5.23pm most days (I’ve calculated the average, I’m not even kidding) and if we get to 5.28pm I start to think he’s either dead, or he’s left me. His silhouette appears at the door and I’m on the starting blocks, ready to bestow upon him the fruits of his loins. “Here. Hold this one, and get that one out of my sight. She (I jab a finger in Mouse’s direction)…SHE is driving me mad.”

“Oh….” My husband flails around with a baby in the crook of one sweaty arm, trying to shrug off his backpack and unclip his helmet with his free hand. He’s got his cycle shoes on, he can’t even move up the hallway into the house proper. I have tricked him, dear reader, I have made him believe he was coming back to a Happy Home. “I didn’t realise it was that bad today? You didn’t say anything in your text about them playing up?”

“Yeah, well they sodding well have played up. I wish I was at work. I’d give anything to be at work.” Ooooh, my big balls statement which I reserve for one outing a week, tops, because I need it to be the c-word equivalent of threats and suitably loaded with malice.

I tell him I’m going for a pre-dinner shower and I’m not to be disturbed under any circumstances. I’m even going to put the lock on. “Would it help if I do up a bit of salad to go with…” he sneaks a glance at the oven to check that it’s on. “Er, with what you’re making us?” Alright, Flash Harry. You try it. Go on, you slice some tomatoes with a writhing infant pinned to one hip and a paring knife in your hand. “Yes. Yes it would help. Use up the radishes, they’re going woody. I’ll be half an hour, I’ve got to do my legs.” The Forestry Commission would be impressed by the rate of fauna growth on my pins, I think on occasion I’ve seen a pair of tawny owls playing peekaboo around the back of my knees (not a euphemism).

Inevitably Mouse bangs on the door claiming to need a wee, before I’ve even de-fuzzed one ankle. “Potty! Go in your potty. Where’s daddy? Daddy – find her potty!” Silence from the good ship daddy, I expect that salad is proving difficult. The door handle starts rattling. “Mummy I think it’s really coming out!”

I concede defeat, I’m not wiping up piss from the floor as well. In she comes. “Can I do your beauties mummy?” Beauties being the ritual of taking the detritus off my face with nice Micellar water. She likes to join in and point out all of my spots, and she tells me when I need to wax my moustache (“There’s fluff on your mouth!”). Not great for the ego, but she keeps me in check. “I thought your wee was coming out?” I ask. She twirls about on tiptoes. “No, I think it’s just really gone now. I don’t need a wee.” She fiddles with the hot tap in the basin and the water pressure in the shower judders.

“Right. Stop that NOW before I really lose my sh…rag.”

At 9.50pm, precisely 10 minutes before we usually decamp to bed, we manage to get Moo into her Moses basket upstairs. I stretch my legs out over my husband’s knees and we sit in a companionable silence, reading the whole Internet on our phones. What a lovely evening we’re having, all ten minutes of it. I feel like I’m making really good inroads with figuring out why Alicia Keys is quite so heartbroken, having followed one of those ridiculous Facebook links where you get a poorly written story in five word bursts diluted by adverts for eliminating belly fat. All that can be heard is Moo snuffling and farting over the baby monitor.

“I took a really sweet photo of Mouse blowing raspberries on Moo’s tummy earlier, look…” I scroll through my camera roll.

“Oh yeah, I need to send you the video of Moo squeaking at her reflection in the mirror.”

“Did you get the collage photo I did of them at the park yesterday?”

“Yeah, I’ve set it as my desktop wallpaper, I meant to tell you!”

“I don’t really hate them, you know that don’t you?”

“Yeah. I know.”

-SJW September 2016

Mouse Moo Me Too

50 Comments

  1. September 13, 2016 / 7:19 am

    I so relate to that. There are times when they drive you made but deep down, you love them, that’s it! And I also say ‘I wish I was at work!’. Right…And when I am back for good, I will say that I want to be home again lol. Women are never happy with what they have, or at least I am! #Chucklemums

  2. September 13, 2016 / 8:13 am

    Oh lovely, this is a wonderful post and I’m with you all the way. Sometimes it’s just a shit day and Emma’s whinging all day long & only when she’s in bed do I think “ahh isn’t she a lovely girl”. It’s the relentlessness of it and never having a single moment’s peace xxx

    • September 13, 2016 / 8:39 pm

      I think you need the benefit of that 10 minutes….and that glass of wine…so reset the balance a bit and remember they’re basically ok 😉 xxx

  3. September 13, 2016 / 8:48 am

    I really enjoyed this. I love that Mouse helps “do your beauties.” I told a friend who doesn’t have children at the weekend that being a mother can be really lonely and she looked really surprised and asked our other friend who does have children if it was true. It makes it so much easier on all of us when we admit it. #chucklemums

    • September 13, 2016 / 8:41 pm

      Yes, loneliness is a very real and actual thing isn’t it – babies and toddlers do not always great company make! Thank you for your comment lovely xx

  4. September 13, 2016 / 9:01 am

    Oh, this sounds so familiar. I can remember the days when I was on mat leave and I would had the Popple over to my husband the second he walked in the door so I could start cooking – because chopping up veg was like a vacation compared to managing a baby. I used to bust out the ‘I wish I was at work’ line all the time too, because working seemed so much easier than staying at home. I think the Popple is the best, but man, she does’t let you rest for a second. #chucklemums

    • September 13, 2016 / 8:42 pm

      Yes, you know it’s bad when you’re fighting over who gets to chop the veg! I know when I’m back at work I’ll view all this through rose tinted glasses and wish I was back at home…ho hum. Thanks for commenting lovely xx

  5. September 13, 2016 / 10:04 am

    It’s so hard when they’re there all the time! And then your other half swans in from work and it feels really hard to justify why you’ve had a bit of a rubbish day. I feel you #chucklemums

    • September 13, 2016 / 8:51 pm

      Thank you, yep – it all suddenly sounds a bit petty when your OH has been to important meetings and made proper decisions and walked around not covered in sick! Thanks for commenting xx

  6. September 13, 2016 / 10:06 am

    haha I hear ya, this is me. Although I don’t think I would have been strong willed enough to delete the first shouty text – I would have probably sent it in my rage and then regretted it when I’d calmed down…eventually. Its hard, no two ways about being mum is my toughest job – I know its a blessing and to be cherished blah blah blah but sometimes, it is just too bloody much and the office seems like a better shout in that moment… #chucklemums

    • September 13, 2016 / 8:52 pm

      On previous occasions I have set the first text and then backtracked like mad because I don’t want him pissed off at me as well as the children, ha. You’re exactly right, sometimes he has an awful day and I feel lucky that I was “just at home”, not that’s not the norm!

  7. September 13, 2016 / 10:20 am

    If walls could talk! Our poor kids get called all sorts and you know you have a good friend when you can refer to your own kids as dickheads and they just laugh and agree instead of phoning the NSPCC! #dreamteam

    • September 13, 2016 / 8:53 pm

      I’m bloody pleased that they can’t talk! I’m sure my neighbours have heard me getting “a little cross” but they’ve moved out now so it’s all good. Kinda.

  8. September 13, 2016 / 10:29 am

    I love the not three kisses or he thinks he’ll get some action. I think the same way! I think I actually only like my children when they are asleep.

    #chucklemums

    • September 13, 2016 / 8:54 pm

      They’re so gorgeous when they’re snuggled up in dreamland aren’t they?! The rest of the time is a pretty dicey gamble…

  9. September 13, 2016 / 11:06 am

    You write so, so well Sam. You totally engage the reader and this post took me straight back to when my girls were tiny. You describe the scene brilliantly and I really felt your and your husband’s emotions. Your texts – your scrubbing out of the text, your husband coming in the door, you knowing the exact time…your detail is immaculate. Alison x #chucklemums

    • September 13, 2016 / 9:08 pm

      Oh Alison that’s such a lovely lovely comment, thank you so much. I do try me ‘ardest for the dear ol’ reader 🙂 Smiling from ear to ear now xxx

  10. September 13, 2016 / 1:07 pm

    I love this post. This used to be me. Every day. Instead of quite a few days a week! It was so tough when they were little. Personal space isn’t a thing is it?! Mouse sounds a lot like my girl, the phantom wee excuse to get in is a popular one! #chucklemums

    • September 13, 2016 / 9:07 pm

      Phantom wee seems to have morphed into phantom poo which is even worse! Thank you for commenting xx

  11. September 13, 2016 / 1:44 pm

    Why do kids always have to be so close to you. Some days when the Child is in bed and the cat tries to sit on my lap it’s like ‘f**k off’. It was worse when I was breastfeeding so I feel your pain. Some days all you can do is survive, which we always manage to do. Some how.

    PS. exactly why is Alicia Keys so heartbroken?

    • September 13, 2016 / 7:49 pm

      Yes, I can’t stand bloody being touched or pawed at all the time. Seems to be getting worse now we’re onto food, as Moo is so grabby and usually covered in sludge. Yum.

      • September 13, 2016 / 9:24 pm

        I dread it when the Child asks for a cuddle when she’s covered in gunk. I hate to refuse cuddles but at the same time ewww. #chucklemums

    • September 13, 2016 / 7:49 pm

      Oh and I don’t know! I never did get to the bottom of it. I think she just finds life a bit tough sometimes, bless her. She’s only hooman.

  12. September 13, 2016 / 5:47 pm

    I am right there with you – loving and hating the stay at home with little life all at once. I have four girls 9 , 6, 2 and 2. They are the best and worst all within a minute.

    #chucklemums

    • September 13, 2016 / 7:47 pm

      Wow, goodness me – that’s a lot of girl in your house! I know exactly what you mean, zero to hero and back again, very quickly. X

  13. September 13, 2016 / 6:34 pm

    There are times aren’t there when they squeeze every single parental drop out of us. It’s like waking up as a fresh(ish) coconut and then being a pile off desiccated coconutty grains by the evening. Still lovely though aren’t they! I feel your pain and wish I could report that tweenagers don’t ‘help’ so much with ablutions but invariably I get ’20’ questions while trying to have a bath! #chucklemums

    • September 13, 2016 / 7:47 pm

      LOVE the coconut analogy – and – always better when vodka and lime are added. When I’m grown up I want my own personal bathroom, Panic Room style, where no one can get in except for me and Tom Hardy.

  14. September 13, 2016 / 8:56 pm

    I’m afraid I didn’t ever really tone the texts down until NC reached the age of 1 (last week). And now I don’t look after them all day and things are immeasurably better. I can totally, TOTALLY relate to this post though… it actually took me back to early this year. Hell. Why do they have to touch you all the time? And NW would walk in in his cycle helmet and backpack and I’d just walk through the same door sometimes with little more than a ‘have them’ and go for a 20 minute walk to calm down. It’s really tough… but writing helps 😉 #chucklemums

    • September 13, 2016 / 9:10 pm

      Erm, can I tell you a little secret? On a Friday, my “treat” is to fuck off out the house the second my husband walks in. I only to go the Co-Op or something but it’s 20 minutes just to recover my senses and not embark on the weekend in an utterly shit mood. Glad it’s not just me!

  15. September 13, 2016 / 9:07 pm

    Hahaha brilliant. Reward chart for the child? Hell no. Alcoholic based reward chart for mummy? Hell to the YEEEEEEEEES!

  16. September 13, 2016 / 10:09 pm

    I love this! Brilliantly written and v funny. I can totally relate to all of it. My kids rarely let me have a shower/shit or shave without interruption! #chucklemums

  17. September 14, 2016 / 2:34 pm

    I can relate to this post. Some days the sheer boredom makes me want to scratch my eyes out. But I love them and they make me laugh most days too! Love how three xxx means sexy time in your house!

    • September 14, 2016 / 2:36 pm

      Ha, I aspire to be you – mine certainly don’t make me laugh every day! Unless it’s a “laugh or I’ll cry” thing. In which case, hourly. Thank you for reading, super blogger xxx

  18. September 14, 2016 / 7:33 pm

    Ah yes. I never love my children more than when they’re fast asleep and I’m looking at angelic photos of them on my phone…
    #chucklemums

  19. September 16, 2016 / 7:33 am

    I have a relatively unusual set up compared to most parent bloggers so this post doesn’t reflect my experience at all, but I could really relate to you while I was reading it, and it got me wondering if I would feel the same if I was at home with a husband at work. I’m always moaning about never seeing Piglet so the grass is always greener! #chucklemums

    • September 16, 2016 / 7:52 am

      Ah no it’s always interesting to hear your perspective – we’re both mummies after all and every mummy wants to lose their shit at times! X

  20. September 17, 2016 / 5:55 pm

    Oh Moose I thought I’d already commented on this but it appears not! I am so with you, I will be pulling my hair out (actually he tries to pull it out for me, little shit) and then he tries to walk and claps himself and I just melt. But yes when B is at home I pretty much refuse to do anything other than feed TM ????

    • September 17, 2016 / 6:45 pm

      It’s the mummy right I think – we grew and birthed them ergo when daddy’s home they need to up their game ???? love you xxx

  21. September 21, 2016 / 8:16 pm

    Forestry Commission… tawny owls! ???????? With two babies born within a year my lower limbs are heading towards national park status, particularly as there was a yeti sighting reported around my left ankle. Christ motherhood is glam! Xx

    • September 21, 2016 / 9:21 pm

      When people start calling the local news stations with reports of seeing a black panther, that’s when we start to worry ???? xx

  22. September 30, 2016 / 8:25 pm

    Oh my goodness my husband and i wet ourselves reading this. This is our evening. When i am in thr shower my toddler likes to take out all the sanitary tabs, rips off the sticky bits and then wallpapers he bathroom with them.

    • September 30, 2016 / 8:32 pm

      Aah I’m pleased you liked it! Haha your toddler sounds like a catch – rendering an entire pack of towels unsticky and useless ???? Thank you for reading xx

  23. November 5, 2016 / 8:51 pm

    You gorgeous girl. I didn’t want to read this when pregnant as needed to be all ultra positive in the final few weeks but coming to it now and I love this post. I pretty much sent to my husband tonight the message you didn’t send to yours. Oops. And those post bedtime conversations…day from hell but look at this lovely photo,aren’t they wonderful…so true! It’s all so complicated!

    • November 5, 2016 / 9:36 pm

      Oh blimey, I doubt you’ve read half of my blogs then as many of them are offputting ???? It’s a very complicated business, this parenting lark, but I’m absolutely loving reading about your experiences of the newborn days second time around. Soak up every single snuggle xxx

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