STOP RIGHT THERE!
If you’ve not read what happened during my first day of looking after the little one, then read no further and click here. If, and only if, you have read the first blog post will I give you permission to continue reading. If you proceed without reading the first post, then I will know. I will find you. I will pursue you. I will hunt you down.
Reading the first blog post is for your benefit. You will find out what I got up to with Baby L during the first hours of being the sole parent and get up to speed with our (mis)adventures, which included the mother of all shitty nappies, football hooliganism, a one-eyed baby, a supermarket-sized haul of milk and an impromptu wet t-shirt competition.
Assuming you’ve read the first blog post, you may continue…
The last thing I told you was that Baby L had fallen asleep at 19.28 and woken at 00.13. This is where we continue the journey.
00.14 – 00.31: I heat 4.5 oz milk and quickly run upstairs to brush my teeth whilst the little one is in that groggy state between being sleep and awake. I manage to get myself ready, let the dog out and quickly tidy up the living room before Baby L’s eyes open. I change her, reswaddle her and feed the little one in bed. She guzzles down around 4 oz before deciding that she’s full. I briefly worry about wasting the additional 0.5 oz of boob juice before remembering that the fridge is still pretty stocked up – unless Baby L has a massive growth spurt tomorrow, there’ll be plenty of milk for her and for my cereal now that I’ve acquired the taste.
00:32 – 00:36: I put the little sprog into her moses basket and rest my head on my pillow. Just as I do, she makes a noise suggesting that her dummy has popped out, so I reluctantly get back up to pop it back in. This happens a couple of times until she gives in and goes to sleep.
00.37 – 04.17: My eyes close and I fall asleep instantly. I assume that the baby has done the same.
04:18 – 04:35(ish): I wake up to a few noises coming from the moses basket. I was a little bit concerned that I wouldn’t wake up as I don’t normally at night, so I was pretty relieved to stir prior to the little one screaming the house down in hunger. In a surprisingly awake state, I make my way downstairs to heat up a bottle. I can’t recall how much milk I did or how long it took her to feed, but it seemed pretty quick! I put her back into her moses basket and we both fall to sleep.
04.35(ish) – 06.28: I enjoy some zzzzzzzz’s.
06.29 – 06.43: My sleep is rudely interrupted by some more sounds in the moses basket next to me. I check the time and am a bit surprised to see it is only 6.30. The little one has been skipping this feed recently, so I hoped that it’d be around 8.00 when I next woke up. In an attempt to coax her back to sleep to save myself getting up, I move her into my bed to give her a cuddle and keep the dummy popping out of her mouth. It doesn’t work, so I mentally prepare myself to get up.
06.43 – 06.46: I continue to mentally prepare myself..
06.47 – 07.12: I give in to the fact that she’s hungry and realise there’s no point in spitting out my dummy out (ha, get it!). I warm her bottle, feed her and burp her. For ease, I keep her in my bed but she decides to freak out. With arms and legs kicking wildly and an inability to calm herself by sucking on the dummy, I hold her close and soothe her until she drifts back into the Land of Nod. I’m not far behind her.
07.13 – 08.33: Asleep.
08.34 – 08.42: Ok, I realise this next sentence sounds weird, but I will explain. I wake up as I hear the dog ring the door bell. I’ll just let that sink in. We have a bell which hangs from the back door which Dax nudges with his nose when he wants to go outside. Rather than not know when the dog wanted to go into the garden or get him into the habit of barking when he wanted to go out, we have trained him to ring a bell. He does this whenever he wants to go into the garden to do his business or if he just wants to have a wander around. Back to the story – I let him out and he has a piss. He then excitedly runs inside knowing he’s going to be fed. He wolfs it down whilst I prepare a 3 oz bottle, then he goes out for a crap. He then annoyingly trots back to his bed and gets cosy. I go back up to bed and take the warm bottle with me in case it is needed.
08.43 – 09:17: I find Baby L awake and looking around the room. She starts to whinge a bit so I decide to give her the bottle as it’s nearly been two hours since her last one. She takes 2 0z of it but isn’t interested in anymore. I decide I can give her the other 1 0z in an hour before we head out to the local weekend dads club. We chill in bed for a bit enjoying the daddy and daughter time. At least I did.
09:18 – 09:49: I give Baby L some tummy time whilst I get changed etc. I take some cute photos of her and just about snap a photo of her smiling, although it is a bit blurred which is a bit annoying as we’ve not yet caught her smiling on camera. I change her and get her dressed after she starts crying which usually signals the end of tummy time. I then give her the remaining 1 oz of milk and worry that she may have an adverse reaction to having the milk cold.
09.50 – 10.26: We go downstairs and I put Baby L into her highchair. I position her so she can look outside at the light whilst I get myself a bowl of cereal. When I pop my head through to check on her, she’s already back asleep. Nothing like a mid-morning snooze after just waking up, eh?! I check I’ve got everything in my bag, take her out of the highchair and pop her into the car seat.
10.27 – 12.19: I put the sprog into the car and drive the short distance to the local town hall where there is a weekly dad and kid meetup. This is the second time I’ve been and it’s nice to go along to something with a bunch of blokes rather than usually being the only penis in a room full of vagina. Obviously I love vagina, but it is nice to blend in for once and not feel like your extra member is being judged. The group is really chilled out with loads of toys for the kids to play with and some finger food. The dads even get a bacon or sausage sarnie! This week there was a bacon and black budding sandwich which was divine. Baby L slept through most of the session, either in the car seat or snuggled in my arms. I headed off when it finished and quickly rushed home expecting the little one to soon be crying for some milk.
12.20 – 12.34 : I’m met at the door by an excited Dax, just as the sprog beings to cry. I warm her bottle, change her, feed her and put on the West Ham v Man City match ready for kick-off. If I’m lucky, the little one will fall asleep and I’ll be able to concentrate on the footy for the next couple of hours.
12.35 – 15.07: I am lucky! The baby snoozes on me for a couple of hours whilst the dog does similar on the floor. The match is a good one, made better by the fact that there are no distractions apart from Michael Owen’s poor attempts at commentary. The missus is due to get into the train station at 15.45, so I start getting things ready so that I can walk down and meet her.
15.08 – 15.26: I warm a bottle and feed the little one. This is a pretty big milestone as it’s the last bottle she’ll have on my watch before reverting back to the nipple for her next feed. I pop her into our Stokke baby carrier and put the dog on the lead.
15.27 – 15.47: As soon as I leave the house there is a bit of drama. Baby L decides she’s not happy having her face pressed against my man boob, so has a little whinge. If that wasn’t bad enough, someone had dropped a bag of Wine Gums which Dax spotted and greedily scoffed into his mouth. With the body count still at zero and the 31 hour deadline approaching, the last thing I needed was a dead dog that had chocked on a random sweet! So I had to stick my fingers deep into his mouth and pull out the salivary, half chewed, gummy bastard, all whilst attempting not to drop the baby from the carrier. Luckily, I managed to succeed, and with a hand dripping with dog spit, continued down to the station where I met the missus.
So that’s my first 31 hours of sole parenting complete. There were a few difficulties, but the majority of the time everything was pretty plain sailing and the experience was enjoyable. I have a feeling that Baby L and Dax knew that I was on my own so were a little bit kinder on me than they are when the missus is also around. This theory seemed to be true as the little one started crying as soon as we got home and was handed to the missus!
What was it like when you had to look after the little one for the first time? Did you do anything that you probably shouldn’t have? What was your biggest fear and accomplishment?