For no reason whatsoever, Mum’s bought a book on how to raise me. Since reading this, she seems to have lost her mind.
So this book literally has rules about everything. It seems to go into actual detail about when Mum should be emptying the dishwasher, what time all the ‘exciting’ games should happen and when I should be lying down with my nappy off. So Mum will be there, book in one hand, trying to sing and do the actions to ‘Wind Your Bobbin Up’, whilst also checking her watch to make sure the fun’s not going on too long.
Anyway this book’s absolutely killed bedtimes. I mean they were great for the first few months. Mum cuddled me and fed me until I fell asleep and then, if I woke up, she just cuddled and fed me some more.
No, apparently now patting and shushing is the thing. And so, Mum’ll sit there in this chair by my cot and start going,
‘Shh, shhh, shhhh, shhhhh,’ and I’ll just be staring up at her thinking
‘Why are you making that noise? I’m trying to sleep.’
Then, when we’ve been through about ten minutes of this, because I won’t have closed my eyes yet and Mum’ll be kind of running out of steam, she’ll just pick me and feed me again like the old days and I’ll think, ‘Phew! Thank goodness that’s all over.’
The other thing is poor Dad clearly hasn’t read this book, so now my parents end up having these huge barnies.
For example, I’ll wake up in the morning and just be, you know, stretching out and doing a bit of grunting. Then Dad will go to turn the lights on and Mum will whisper,
‘The book says it has to be dark till seven’ and Dad will be like
‘Don’t be ridiculous. It’s ten to seven.’
And Mum will say, ‘But the book says the day doesn’t start till seven’
And Dad will be like, ‘I reckon ten to seven is reasonable.’
Then Mum will get all serious and say,
‘Don’t you tell me what you reckon! You haven’t even read the book.’ And I’ll be lying there thinking,
‘Well I haven’t read the book either, but you can turn the light on if you like. I’m awake.’
But, because Mum has used the really scary voice, Dad will then attempt to change my nappy in the dark. And Dad can’t see well at the best of times, so he’ll be there taking out about fifty wipes and making the most ridiculous noises like,
‘Oh my! Oh my! I think I AM going to need the light on for this.’
And Mum will be hissing from the bed,
‘The book says you mustn’t talk. And stop looking at her – no eye-contact at night time.’