Monday, 20 May 2013
New Mum Week 11 - Baby's First Break
Well - my little man is 11 weeks old - and last week he experienced his first holiday. My parents kindly offered to take us to Whitby and last Saturday we trundled down the motorway in a car bursting with luggage - 98% of which was baby based. My partner could only stay for one night and as he had to work, so I was left to enjoy the seaside on my own with our little boy and his grandparents for an entire week.
It is amazing how much 'stuff' you need to travel with a baby. We couldn't take the pram - it just wouldn't fit in the car! It was either the pram or my mother - and although I tried to argue, we went with 'Mother' in the end. He needed his moses basket, his chair, his sterilising equipment, about 25 outfits, his toys, his play gym, his bottles, his formula, his nappies, his wipes, his changing bag, his blankets and his car seat. This meant the three adults in the party got to take one outfit each as well as what we were already wearing. My Father lived in a yellow jumper all week and I spent most of the time in charity shops trying to find things to plump up my wardrobe.
The last time I had been to Whitby, I was newly pregnant - which meant I could not enjoy two of my favourite things - Shellfish and alcohol. I intended on making up for this this time around.
The sea air obviously suited my little boy - as on the first night he slept ALL night, which is so out of the ordinary that I didn't sleep a wink - so worried was I that there must be something wrong. I think this is called Irony.
We spent our days waking at 6am, going downstairs and playing until around 8.30 when he would pass out on his play mat. I would then take the opportunity to shower and get ready. He would wake at 9.30 for a feed and then he would be changed (not for another baby), shuffled into a warm one-piece, slotted in to his sling and we were ready to go!
The two of us would venture around the shops, into cafes, along the sea front - and even down to the beach. The weather was far too windy to stay on the beach for long, but he did see the sea and the sand, when he wasn't in a mini coma from the gentle rocking motion of the sling and the effect of the sea air.
Whitby was delightful as everyone there wanted to stop and ask me about my tiny passenger. I was asked numerous times what his name was and how old he was. Two little old ladies in the local supermarket asked me if he was a boy or a girl - twice - like they didn't believe my first answer. I decided not to be insulted - even though he was wearing a blue hat. They also asked me if I was breastfeeding. A tad personal I felt! I quelled the impulse to ask them if they were menstruating. But joking aside - it was lovely to have so many interested people in my little guy. Almost made him feel like new again - like I had 'just' come home from the hospital.
A lady in one restaurant - who had been eyeing him for a while with her husband - even asked if she could hold him. I hesitated for a second, weighed up the risks in my mind and decided she probably wasn't a threat, and if she moved towards the door I could definitely rugby tackle her to the floor - and so I let her hold him. She was thrilled. And he was in his element - all of these lovely new smiling faces peering at him all week, when at home he really only gets to see my ugly mug 80% of the time.
My parents were also overjoyed to get a whole week with their grandson and a few times I left him with them for a couple of hours and was allowed to go out on my own.
Pre-baby my absolute favourite past-time was eating in a restaurant on my own. I absolutely loved the feeling of picking a restaurant, ordering a delicious dish and a copious amount of wine and just sitting with my own thoughts watching other diners and the world going by. I was ecstatic to get to do this again.
I ordered Moules Mariniere everywhere I went - or any dish that contained a plethora of Shellfish. I also ordered my favourite cocktail a couple of times - a Margarita. The things I used to treasure...
Turns out, Margaritas give me a headache. Muscles can get boring. My own company is not that interesting nowadays. These once coveted little treasures... turns out I don't really treasure them any more. And then I found myself jigging my leg up and down to keep the baby calm.. before realising he wasn't there...
I will, of course, miss the invaluable back seat mothering I got all week.
Darling, I think he is too cold. He might be too hot. I am worried he's too 'just right'.
Darling, I think he is hungry. He might be too full. I am worried he's overfed, underfed, starving...(delete applicable).
Darling, I think he is tired. He might be overly tired. I am worried he's too awake. Is he sleeping? Well, you should wake him up!
One week on and we both feel refreshed. I got a hair cut! I got lots of fish! We got lots of sea air and some great sleep. He got loads of attention and busy days. We even got a couple of days of sunshine and I feel much more confident in thinking about our next holiday... this time with Daddy... and abroad!
Although I'm not sure how I am going to get all his shit on a plane!