From the purple Phil Mitchell potato baby that was handed to me four years ago as I embarked on this crazy motherhood adventure, through to years one, two and three – this one has been our most challenging yet as Arlo crash landed and we all adjusted to being a family of four.
So what have I learnt this year?
× They still love dressing up. They do protest more now but sweets are always a good bargaining tool.
× Bribery Reasoning comes into force more and more, it reduces your bank account and goes against your ‘don’t give the kids e-numbers’ rule, but it saves your sanity.
× You stop shoe shopping at Clark’s. And don’t even feel guilty about it.
× They never stop talking…..
….or making constant demands
….or asking questions; few of my favourites this year have been – ‘how did my brother get here?’, ‘will I go to jail?’ or ‘mummy, why haven’t you got a willy like daddy?‘
× They can’t keep a secret and will happily grass you up to daddy
× You can love more than one child; and contrary to what my mum used to tell me, you can have a (temporary) favourite. [Usually the one that’s not being a complete twat at the time]
× They don’t forget anything, especially if it involves sweets or toys
× Your first born baby no matter how old will always be your baby (cue Mariah Carey)
× You have the confidence to laugh in the face of people trying to tell you how to manage your children
× You can leave them downstairs while you shower, and they can generally entertain themselves for a while
× You start to realise how quick the years go and start imagining them in grown up scenarios. You think of their future and where their personality will take them (Sofia’s – prison)
× You start preparing them for school (whilst preparing yourself, your mindset, after school clubs, logistics and your working hours)
× They start to work out when weekends are and ask for ‘late nights’
× They need another carseat, and you question why you didn’t go into car seat manufacturing as a job
× The parent and child parking fury rages on…the less said about that the better
× The sickness fear spreads…as we come out the other side of it joining our house this week.
× You do put make up on now, but so do they
× They apparently start gathering boyfriends at this age…
× The tantrums become more hideous
× They learn how to work controllers and demand ‘Netflix’
× They start using words like ‘diapers‘ and ‘kindy‘ and you know it’s time to extract the iPad and YouTube from them
× They spend hours watching American kids; pretend to drive cars, walk around shopping malls pushing prams, open birthday presents, shriek at the mashems/LOL eggs. See above point.
× With two of the buggers now at nursery our house is one long constantly cough and cold cycle – [tip: buy shares in Calpol, we’re keeping them in business]
In summary: LagerDad is well and truly booked in for the snip. I still cry at everything, I comfort eat my way through the tantrum days, my potty mouth sometimes belongs on the Chatsworth Estate and I pray to the sleep gods more than ever before.
But d’you know what? I wouldn’t change a thing.