Again, as with most things I write about, I don’t really know! What to do with the little time I have when my child naps for what could be five minutes or could be an hour and a half (and there is no way of knowing in advance how long he will sleep for!) is a conundrum that plagues me daily. Everyone says “just sleep when they sleep,” which is sound advice but difficult for several reasons:
Housework – everyone also says “oh just leave the house work and sleep,” but if I did that every time he naps then my house would very quickly become a biohazard zone.
Timing – but how long will my child sleep? NO ONE KNOWS. What if I’ve just drifted off and he wakes up? That would be so much worse than if I was loading the dishwasher when he starts to scream, that way I’m just leaving dirty dishes to go and desperately persuade him that 15 minutes is nowhere near a long enough nap instead of the gentle embrace of my soft bed.
Alone time – if I sleep when he sleeps WHEN OH WHEN will I just be able to sit and be? When will I be able to watch Naked Attraction and knit? WHEN!?
So, here’s what I suggest you do at nap time, preferably on some kind of random rotation:
Cry. Get it all out. You’ll feel so much better afterwards. Put on the last 15 minutes of The Notebook and have yourself a little weep party for one, while you stuff your face with cake or crisps because you’ve haven’t been able to eat yet today. Which leads me on to…
Eat something! Do you remember when you thought maternity leave would be a time when you’d be able to prepare fresh and healthy meals daily and get your pre-baby body back in no time? LOLS. No. It’s 12:30pm and whilst you’ve had avocado lovingly rubbed into you hair, you haven’t actually had time to put anything (healthy or otherwise) in your own mouth. Sometimes you look in your fridge and the only edible thing in there is mayonnaise and who knew mayonnaise on a cracker could taste so good? Someone who hasn’t eaten for over 12 hours but has spent those 12 hours constantly feeding someone else, THAT’S WHO. My caring husband recommended that I make myself a “warm oats breakfast smoothie” to keep my energy up. I tried not to laugh too loudly and then today I actually used a nap time to make the suggested smoothie, I followed the recipe he sent me and everything. I spent the whole time worried the juicer would wake Douglas up and then when I tried said smoothie it was genuinely hideous. I wrote it off as a mini fail and sat down with a cup of tea – at which time Douglas woke up. EPIC FAIL. Moral of the tale: eat whatever you find and eat it quickly.
Sit down. Just sit. Take a minute to sit down and stay seated. So often I sit down by accident, I didn’t mean to but my body just decided it was time. And it feels amazing, but I know I have to get back up in a matter of seconds to attend to the next (and probably moist) thing. So just have a little luxury sit.
Do a thing. A thing you used to do before you had a baby. I knit. And write blogs. Sometimes I only get to knit two rows or write two sentences but at least I did the thing. I had a tiny taste of pre-baby life and it was bloody delicious.
Meditate. Let me just say that I NEVER do this, but wouldn’t it be just great if I did? Wouldn’t I be the most relaxed and fulfilled mum ever? But sitting down and eating something/anything while crying at the TV and look at my knitting wistfully always wins.
If there is one thing you don’t have time for, it’s guilt. So whatever you choose to do with the time you have, enjoy it (as much as you can enjoy things like cleaning!) with unadulterated pleasure. You’ve earned it!
So there are my suggestions for nap time! Dear reader, please take them or leave that at your own incredibly limited leisure.
Eight months ago I gave birth to a human child and it was the hardest, most effervescent experience of my life. Recently there has been a lot in the news about the rising number of caesareans in the UK and the reasons behind this. I practised Hypnobirthing which has a bad rep but is really just the most practical, level-headed way to approach childbirth. I learned that childbirth in all of its forms is a wonderful thing, epidural, c-section, home-birth, whatever, as long as its on YOUR terms. This is the most natural thing in the world but unfortunately because we live in a patriarchal society, women have been convinced through an historical rhetoric that we’re not strong enough to take on the challenge that our bodies were actually designed for. Which makes NO SENSE! More and more I realise how strong and capable woman are. Our resources are deeper, our resolve is stronger, our capacity for love is wider. WE ARE SO CAPABLE.
I’m not going to try and tell you that my experiences of childbirth are completely beautiful and amazing and painless because that would be a lie but in talking to other mother’s I’ve realised that my natural, calm birth isn’t the norm. So I wanted to put together a blog on why that is, because I am no stronger or weaker than any other mother out there. So here are my tips for childbirth… Continue reading “How To…”→
Sometimes life just feels like its on a constant mission to make you crazy and I think things are particularly mental just after you’ve had a child, whether it’s your first, second, third, fourth…(if it is your fourth then you’re actually legitimately insane and you either don’t really, or really do, need to read this article) the adjustment is always huge and things can take a long time to settle.
I have a couple of things I need to do to stay sane, but mostly I’m not that great at doing them, so I thought I’d write it all down… Continue reading “How To…”→
The hashtag #toohottosleep has been trending for a good couple of days now and I am not immune to this. A solid night of sleep has evaded me for almost a week now. So, I’ve come up with a couple of tips on how to try and sleep during this pesky heatwave.
Well not me, thats for sure. In the lead up to my wedding I was a mess, the three days before – a wreck. I was snotty and ill and crying and dreading the ‘big day’ (it makes it worse when people call it that). However, something amazing happened – when I woke up on ‘the morning of’ I was calm, happy, relaxed, still a bit poorly but nothing a lemsip and glass of fizz couldn’t fix. I loved getting ready and then when the actual event got started I actually had the best day of my entire life. It was the opposite of what I expected, but actually exactly what everyone said it would be. I can’t wait to see the wedding video because at the moment it all feels as though it was a really wonderful dream! Yesterday I received these beautiful pictures and they’re really helping it all seem like reality.
Now that I’m freelance I find myself spending a lot of time in my little home office, resisting the temptations of YouTube, day-time telly, a spot of cleaning or just going out and about round the local charity shops!
So incase any of you dear readers are suffering from the same cheeky temptations I have put together a list of tips to help keep you on track (I’m hoping this will benefit me in a follow your own advice way).
How To Work From Home:
BAN YOUTUBE (she says, whilst playing a Eurovision Song Contest Concert on said media channel – it’s got all the hits! And Graham Norton!).
Set yourself specific times, I charge an hourly rate anyway so it really helps me to turn every distraction off, put an hour timer on my phone and then when that goes off I can pause and have a little break (a Euro Break).
Get up and at ’em! Even though you don’t have a boss tapping their watch when you walk into the office anymore, you should probably get up at a reasonable time. If you end up waking up at 10am it’ll just make you feel bad and that’s not a good way to start the working day!
Get up and get out! No I’m not talking about your one night stand – I get up when Chris gets up (sometimes before – he’s a last minute man) and walk with him to work. Then I either jog or walk back home, which gives me really good time to think about the day ahead and the exercise puts me in a really good mood. I would thoroughly recommend a walking start to your day!
Get dressed! This might seem like an obvious one but back in January I spent a lot of time working at my desk in my jammies but now I’ve come to the conclusion that it’s a bad idea – it never puts me in the right headspace to work. I’m not saying put your suit on or anything, right now I’m not wearing what I would wear to a meeting but I am wearing clothes (and even a bra!) which makes me feel a lot more ready to work than my dressing gown does.
There are my five tips from working home – and I’d have written this blog a lot quicker if I didn’t have a cat on my computer the whole time…
I have mentioned before that this year I have decided to buy no new clothes, for the entirety of its course, but someone recently enquired how on earth I refrain from purchasing said items, so I’ve put together the traditional five bullet point list on How Not To Buy Clothes: