The past few weeks have been pretty mental around here. Needless to say, I think everyone’s households have probably been the same given it is Christmas. Alee was working insane hours, I am talking 12-14 hour days, leaving home by 7am, getting home after 10pm and then drawing her designs before and after work. She got no time with Oakland, no time to help organise Christmas, no time with me. It was a huge sacrifice but she pulls these kind of hours to accommodate her clients. Everyone was wanting tattoos for Christmas, or while they were on holidays. Actually, it is still the same now and will be for the next couple of weeks until everyone returns to work. I’ve been managing her bookings from home and it is just crazy trying to fit everyone in for their holidays, but Alee is very giving in that way.
All that aside, Oakland is being an absolute terror! Not sure if any of you use The Wonder Weeks (TWW) app or not, but it is amazing. It is like an app to live by if you are a parent! Oakland is FINALLY in the throes of his last leap and I could not be happier to see the ass end of this shit. I was already losing my mind at the fact I have had Oakland 24/7 by myself since forever, and that was just my usual, everyday perfect Oakland. He has now been replaced by this foot stomping, face slamming, food averting, screaming horror child. I figured he was coming close to leaping then checked my app and sure enough he was days off starting and that was bad enough. Then literally the day the leap began he was just the biggest asshole. That morning Alee smiled at me as she shut the front door, looked me straight in the eye and said “you are going to have the shittest day”. Fuck you Alee. In that moment I think she realised that sometimes working a paid job is actually so much easier than parenting. I mean come on, how hard is it to sit in a chair and draw her little doodles on people? Being a artist isn’t exactly a skill, it is a natural talent. She was artistic in the womb I am sure.
Well she was right. He was fucking horrendous all day. He would cling to my leg screaming whilst simultaneously pushing me away from him. He was starving for dinner because dinner is at 5pm and it was 5:15pm, and somehow he just knows. How the fuck do children do that? So I made dinner (with a clinging child on my shin) then tried to sit him in his chair. He bent his legs and kicked and bucked so I couldn’t get him in. I gave up and sat him on my knee, so he decided all he wanted was boob. FML. Gave him boob then he was like ok, cool, now I will sit in my chair. So what does he do? Threw everything on the floor and literally only ate kernels of CORN!!!! Fucking hell! I could have saved myself so much time, money and dishes if I knew all I had to do was cook a lump of corn. Watching a toddler dissect a home cooked dinner for an hour is like watching special forces disarm a WMD. The skill involved is next to none. The whole damn day was pretty much the same. He is only not screaming if he is attached to my boob. He is so strong now too, he does this thing where if I try to put him down he wraps his leg around me like we are fighting it out in the octagon. What the hell am I meant to do here? Why the hell is my child screaming incessantly? TWW app gives tips to help him through the leap but where are the tips to help me through this? I don’t drink alcohol and there is only so much peppermint tea I can consume so I am out of options. I’ve heard from friends that have dared to go before me that this is a particularly nasty leap, so pray for us. Oak and I will get there!
I think one thing that is making this tolerable is the fact that I am returning to work in a couple of weeks. The idea terrifies and excites me all at the same time. At this stage Alee and I aren’t comfy sending him to day care. One, how the hell do you trust a complete stranger with the care of your child, and two, I really don’t feel like working to pay for day care. I’d rather be the in the same or similar financial position and actually watch my child grow. It’s so hard to come to terms with the idea of missing out on him since I’ve been with him his entire life but having some kind of adult interaction for more than 20 minutes in the morning and an hour or so at night will surely be great? It will be nice to give Oakland the opportunity to develop some more independence too. Hopefully between Mum and Alee we can have him at home. Oakie’s little bestie goes to day care and his mum works part time and I can see how happy she is to have that little bit of ‘me time’ and she says he really enjoys it too. I don’t think I know of any mum who has gone back to work and absolutely hates it, so hopefully once we get over the first little bump we will both love it. Every mum I have spoken to have all said the same thing, getting home to him will be the best part of my day. I am hoping it will also mean I make the most of our time together and we have the energy to go on more adventures as some days it is so easy to feel lazy and exhausted when you are around little ones 24/7 without a break.
I guess my biggest dilemma is breastfeeding. I don’t plan to pump as I don’t feel like I will need to. I can go 8 hours overnight without getting sore boobs and still maintain some kind of supply. But Oakland refuses to drink anything other than green smoothies, breast milk and water. He has boob to go down for his daily nap…help???? Any suggestions are welcome here. Mum and I plan to have a few trial runs over the next couple of weeks and I will leave the house while she tries to get him down minus boob. We are hoping he will take toddler milk or cow’s milk if I am not around. Maybe this will mean he eventually weans completely, I am not sure but I think I now feel ready for whatever may happen with our breastfeeding journey. The last thing I want to do before it ends though is have some breast milk jewellery made. I’ve seen beautiful designs by Baby Bee Hummingbirds and I think I am going to get one, they do Zip Pay now! I’d love to hear from any mummas who continued to breastfeed while still working. I will only do 2-3 days per week at this stage. The extra money is going to be awesome though, Alee has booked us a cruise to Vanuatu and Noumea in August next year for Oakland’s second birthday! We’ve got the majority of our family coming along too which is so exciting!