🎲 BABY DICE 🎲

I have a theory that when you have a baby in attendance, you can put in as much effort as you like into making an event lovely and enjoyable and fun, and then… you roll the Baby Dice.

  • Roll a 1, and whatever preparation you made was utterly in vain because the baby? Has gone feral! Angry beetroot mode: bright red, inconsolable, embarrassingly loud. There is no continuing with the plan: Priority One is diffuse the baby, and nothing else matters til that’s done. Expensive food? Delicate negotiation? Audience with the Queen? Doesn’t matter! You have to break off and get out of there, or else.
  • Roll a 2, and you have an angry crying baby on your hands who will only be settled with constant, devoted parental attention and who will dissolve back into crying the moment that attention lapses onto something else, eg any hint of a conversation. If this baby deigns to breastfeed, it will do so with maximum back arching, whining and writhing so as to expose as much boob to passersby as humanly possible. And then it will vomit.
  • Roll a 3, and you have a grumpy baby. Liable to kick off but easily mollified with lots of smiling and shushing and rocking; comparatively a breeze!
  • Roll a 4, and you have a lovely sociable baby with big smiles and minimal grouchiness. She may cry in your friend’s arms but will instantly settle with you. She is basically cute AF. People will smile indulgently in your general direction. However, she may also re-roll into a 3 or below with precious little warning, so relax and stop paying attention at your peril.
  • Roll a 5, and your baby is asleep. So damn beautiful. So quiet. “Is she always like this?” people ask in hushed wonderment, and you will laugh wryly and demure that no, no, often she’s quite a handful (or other adorable euphemism). She will not wake up and demonstrate how non-cute the reality can be.
  • Roll a 6, and your baby is awesome. Awake! Smiley! Chatty, even! Charming strangers and turning your own heart to putty. She will prefer to babble and coo, and show no interest in crying or shrieking. She will pull adorable instagrammable faces, or play entertainingly intensely with her toys. If this baby feeds, she will do so with efficient gusto and then fall soundly asleep wearing a beatific smile.

Of course, when you have twins, at every occasion you roll two dice. Good luck! 🤞

Chilled and content… for now!

Anyway, today during a random afternoon in Stoke Newington we rolled two 6s and it was great. We went for a walk in Clissold Park, pottered along Church Street, then got hungry and debated for a while: curbside eating? Picnic in the park? Risk taking our whole ensemble of cockerpoo and bulky double buggy somewhere indoors?!

We bit the bullet and stopped in the Red Lion. It smelled really good (fresh hot pizza!) and was fairly empty, but to begin with I was laughably tense. Even though the babies were asleep, it felt like a lot could go wrong. And then… the babies kept sleeping! I relaxed a bit. The soothing combo of fairy lights and decent music worked its magic. We had a pizza and a tasting flight of ales, each. Then the babies woke up – and were really rather lovely! They sat quietly, fed peacefully, squeaked and burbled in ways that I found endlessly entertaining, and beamed at all and sundry.

This could go very wrong… 😬
All smiles!

Eventually, instead of a sudden meltdown, they gave us loads of warning that the grace period was nearing its end. We made a brisk but not too awkward exit, and escaped into the evening with almost zero hostile stares. Win!

I did not come away from this thinking we can go to the pub like we used to. I felt like we got bloody lucky. But I did come away feeling like it’s not impossible either, and that’s just what I needed this week.

Do you have any experiences of rolling the baby dice? I’m convinced it’s not just me who feels the success or total failure of an occasion is essentially left to chance these days! 😂

When Lightning Strikes Twice…

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Hey, we thought. Let’s have a baby! 

or rather, we thought: Let’s stop trying not to have a baby, whilst very aware that when a woman’s in her early thirties (me) the chance of getting pregnant straight away is pretty small (just under 1 in 7, or about 15%), and fully content with the idea that it could take months or even years to actually conceive said baby.

Oh really? Said fate, or Sod’s law, or whatever you want to call the power that makes unlikely things IMMEDIATELY happen at maximum intensity.  Feeling pretty relaxed about all this, are you? We’ll see about that! 

Lightning struck twice that first weekend; exactly 8 months later, our tiny twin girls were born, and it’s fair to say that nothing since has been the same…

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We’re now 4 months in and I have come to realise that I need a place for the whirligig of rants, ruminations and eureka moments that form the mosaic of early parenthood in the internet age. It’s remotely possible these bits and pieces might be interesting or helpful to other people, but if – as is way more likely – they are not, then this will still be a tidy little time capsule for me, which my future self might return to, to re-live these strange early days with the wry fondness of hindsight, that would otherwise have been lost in the mists of sleep-deprivation…

AKA if I don’t write it down it’ll be gone forever as I currently have the memory of a cartoon fish. 🐠