The Truth About Babies

07 December 2011
The opportunity to raise and nurture a child, to be alongside them and gently guide them as they introduce themselves to the world, develop, and grow, is a magical and sacred experience that reminds us all what life is really about.

I'm still bored off my tits being home every day with Baby G, though.
It's the truth that dare not speak its name: that a desperately wanted and so dearly loved child can be quite, quite dull.

I love Baby G so much that sometimes I can cry just looking at him. It doesn't mean I don't get pretty fed up by about the third hour of making Mr Bun dance to "Take A Chance On Me" for Baby G's amusement while he whinges (BabyG whinges, not Mr Bun, although I'm sure if Mr Bun could talk he'd express reservations as well).

Very poor conversationalist

In the past few years I have done so much. I've tried my hand at roller derby and qualified as a youth worker and worked at more and less pleasant jobs and volunteered on election campaigns and attended policy and agency meetings and travelled and gotten married. But now life has shrunk, without a car and post c-section, to within the four walls of the flat most of the time. There's really very little you can do with them - I've spent more time at Westfield since BabyG was born than I had in all my previous life, because they are climate controlled and flat and have parents' rooms. A woman from my Facebook friends list, whose daughter was born the day after BabyG, remarked when the babies were two weeks old that she was bored, and someone whom I'm guessing hasn't spent much time around newborns replied "but you have a baby to play with!". How I laughed.

I knew this going into it, of course. I knew having a baby wasn't always going to be a barrel of laughs. And I yearned to be a mother nonetheless. But no amount of longing for a child can ease the frustration of having spend two hours rocking and patting and humming to sleep that child then having them, three minutes later, fart themselves awake.

I'm sure there are parents who revel in every minute of this, who adore babyhood, right down to the cactus hours that are a feature of life with a newborn (six hours of nonstop crying!), just as there are those who would give just about anything for the chance to be bored by a baby at all. But can we be honest enough to admit there are those of us who are bored silly by our kids, even as we love them, and that sometimes it can be a minor victory not to swig the cooking wine at 8am?


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