Today my son is six months old. This milestone means many things; that he’s grown from a teeny little 6lb 11oz bundle of floppiness and bewilderment to a god-knows-how-many-lbs bundle of chubbiness and slobber and giggles. That I’ve learnt more nursery rhymes than I ever thought possible. That the total number of hours spent doing baby signing must exceed 100, with no indication that the total number of signs my son produces in return will ever exceed zero.
But it also means that I’ve survived six months of night feeds. Six months of zombie shopping, and 3am WhatsApp-ing, and trying to resist the urge to wake my husband because I’m so very resentful of him for daring to be asleep. But most of all, it means six months of entirely ridiculous plans, thought up sometime between 2 and 5am, each of which I’m still a little bit committed to as a potential actually good idea.
It’s important that after you read this you tell me how ridiculous these plans really are.
1. Form a motherhood-themed girlband.
The female Flight of the Conchords, if you will, just singing songs about motherhood, instead of Hurt Feelings. Although, come to think of it, there probably is a decent amount of crossover between motherhood and hurt feelings. Still, what’s the point of having two guitars in that upstairs room that you haven’t even been into for months if you’re not going to form a band? Someone else in the NCT group must play something. Who cares if the Scummy Mummies have a bit got the singing about motherhood thing nailed? We can be the East 17 to their Take That. The All Saints to their Spice Girls. The NSync to their Backstreet Boys.
Should probably get some more recent references if we’re going to crack the pop market, though.
2. Go back to university
University was great, wasn’t it? Back then you were up at 3am because you wanted to be, not because you had a tiny human yelling at you for food. In fact, you were probably yelling at some poor takeaway driver for food. And you got to learn things all day long. Things that weren’t about latch, or about nappy rash, or about baby led weaning. You could learn whatever you wanted to learn. God, it was great. And what was the point of moving to a university town if you’re not going to do all that again.
Problem is, there’s just so bloody much to learn. How to pick a subject? Does an MA in Creative Writing make sense? Maybe a PhD in eighteenth century literature? Some kind of history degree? So many options, so little time. So very, very little time. Still, studying with a baby can’t be that hard, can it? Pop him in the bouncy chair and you’re away.
3. Redecorate the house
Those curtains are a bit crap, aren’t they? Just hanging there, being faded and a bit ugly. This whole room’s a bit faded and ugly, come to think of it, even in the rubbish light of the night light. It looks a bit like the “after” in Changing Rooms, which as anyone who watched tv around the millennium knows, is really not a good thing. We should definitely repaint. Tomorrow. You could put the baby in the sling and just get on with it. Sure, he’d probably get a bit of paint on his head but by this point the amount of food he’s had on his head probably adds up to a full three course meal, so a bit of paint won’t hurt him. Probably.
4. Learn another language and raise the baby bilingual
What was it the baby sensory woman said today? The first six months are the most crucial for language acquisition? Seems a bit ridiculous given all he can do is make a succession of vowel sounds at seemingly random volume but sure, let’s go along with that. Must talk to him more. Very important.
But if his brain’s a tiny little linguistic sponge at the moment, shouldn’t you be aiming higher? Why just English? Why not try and use this time to make him some kind of bilingual baby genius? Sure, there’s the slight hindrance of not actually knowing another language, but you do have those language GCSEs so you can’t be entirely useless. Yeah, they’re basically in using a dictionary, but so what? There’s potential there. You could absolutely learn a language and teach it to the baby at the same time. You just need to pick a language. Best Google “easiest language to learn” when the phone charges back up.
5. Open a baby boutique
Oh man, baby clothes are so bloody cute. Imagine spending your life surrounded by dinky little baby clothes all the time and getting paid for it. That’d be the greatest job ever, especially because all the dinky little babies would come into the shop as well, and nobody would expect you to change their nappies or get up for them in the night or do any of the unpleasant baby stuff. It’s just a shame there isn’t a baby clothes shop around here.
Hang on, though. What was that headline you saw earlier when you flicked through Twitter in the two minutes this afternoon where the baby would actually let you put him down? Something about how you can use maternity leave to bag your dream job and change your life? That clearly means that you should open that baby shop yourself. Just imagine it; you, and baby clothes, together at last without anyone being able to tell you off for buying too many. Because youd just be making sure you’ve got enough stock in! This is the greatest plan yet!
A Kickstarter will sort the initial financing, surely? There must be enough other sleep deprived parents around here for some of them to part with their money in the name of bringing Frugi to the neighbourhood. You’ll have to set that up in the morning.
If the baby lets you put him down.