Today’s guest post comes from Laura Adams. Not only is Laura a first time mum, this is also her first ever blog post, so I’m very happy to be hosting it.
So there I am sitting on a train, sipping a glorious morning latte and actually feeling all right about commuting to the office when – without warning – a flicker of guilt crosses my mind.
Wait, this isn’t like me. I’m one of the most selfish people I know, how can this be happening? Then it dawns on me. Oh god, I think, I’m a BAD WIFE.
My mind metaphorically curls into a ball as I recall the events of the previous night: baby wakes up, I wake, husband wakes and sweetly enquires whether there is anything he can do. I shout at him and blame HIM for EVERYTHING including waking the baby in the first place (this may, or may not, be accurate). Baby becomes more agitated, I am more agitated, husband looks wounded; no-one gets much sleep.
The next morning, I feel groggy but ok, get up and leave the house with a luxurious baby-free day in the office ahead of me.
But what’s this? I suddenly feel absolutely, penetratingly, wretchedly, terrible.
And before you say, ‘but you’ve just had a baby! This is not Victorian England – who gives a toss about HIM!’ I must admit to being blessed with a husband who is, ahem, pretty perfect.
The sci-fi fanaticism aside, he is the soulmate I secretly pined for, with a soothing, kindly temperament that makes me feel like the most adored and cared-for woman in the world. I don’t mind gushing that his influence makes me a far more easygoing, trusting, and relaxed person.
When the blue line appeared on the pregnancy test little over 14 months ago, the prospect of new life and love danced gently in his eyes… while I slumped on the sofa, stricken at the prospect of giving up wine for eight months.
And when our beautiful baby girl was born in May, I struggled through the first few weeks in a state of shock and confusion punctuated by violent mood swings. Hubby, meanwhile, tended to our every need with good humour and spirit.
It is a team effort. While I lie in bed reading a book and breastfeeding; he cleans the house from top to bottom. While the baby and I compensate for the 15 minutes we were awake during the night with a lie-in until 10am, hubby leaves the house at 6am to earn our living. When he wafts through the door at 6pm, I pass the baby to him and run myself a nice, warm, soapy bath. Thus far, it has worked out.
And yes there have been a few altercations – but hey, that’s baby blues right? A bit of harmless shouting is reasonable, right?
Perhaps not, because here I am with a sense of dread taking hold of me. At work, I am practically revered for my diplomacy skills and man management. At home, I realise, I am a MONSTER.
My mood darkens and I find myself digging out the iPhone to craft a contrite message of apology.
He accepts with the good nature and loveliness to which I am accustomed, gives me a big bear hug when I arrive home, and ushers me on to the sofa with a large glass of red and a magazine.
There is no baby to see to because he has bathed her and put her to sleep long before I arrive home.
This is my first ever blog entry and I racked my brains about what to write about. Of course there is my baby, there is ME, but it can be all too easy to forget that there is also my husband. So at a time when I spend much of my time wrapped up in ME and motherhood, I’d like to dedicate this to him. And that this monster says through sharp, gritted teeth – thank you.