Friday, 23 August 2013

Don't walk

The Boy isn't walking yet.

My Mum has now started to remark on it, every time she sees him. "Oh, dear, you're so lazy! You don't walk!"

One of the very nice ladies at work has pointed out that we all learn things in our own time and that he is busy learning other things (he is obsessed with sorting and stacking at the moment) when he is not learning to walk, and that there's no point in trying to persuade him otherwise.

Despite mocking a woman we saw on holiday who spent the entire week bent over double trying to "walk" her baby around the campsite, my husband is now starting to do the same to him.

The Boy is fine. He responds to us, he makes eye contact, he chases the cat, he babbles wordlessly to us about his best toys, he is energetic. He hits all his developmental milestones apart from the walking; he can climb alarmingly quickly, and is beginning to be able to work my laptop, which is kind of weird when you only got introduced to touchpads in your mid 20s and your 16 month old has it sussed already.

Yeah, it is a bit disheartening for me when a kid half his age toddles past him. But, he doesn't care. We don't all do things at the same speeds. Maybe, given his familiarity with my laptop and working at home, he already knows he doesn't need to leave the house to survive; evolution in action.

And you can bet your bottom dollar that the people doing the "Oh! My baby walked at 9 months!" are exactly the sort of people as the person who say things like "Gosh! You need to get a move on with having kids".

Next time, it might get a "Nah, not walking, but he spent 18 months in the freezer so he's just chilled!"

Thursday, 8 August 2013


Some of our stuff goes into storage tomorrow, so we can do up our flat. Realistically, we're not going to be able to sell quickly, so it's more of a long goodbye for six months than a long weekend away.

I think I'm fairly ruthless and pragmatic about these things; I've only kept what I think I'll need. Books, cookery books and kitchen gadgets, clothes and the wee man's baby gear has been packed away or stored fairly efficiently. 

Even so, there have been a few things that I couldn't help but look over, or read, before they went away. Novels, mainly. Not impressive ones, but historic chick lit and pulp sci fi that had survived previous purges and I had to remind myself why. But after, well, possibly too many minutes with each, I reminded myself of my Kindle and that it wasn't goodby forever, and put them in the box.

I can't bear to put away some things, though, even impractical ones. There aren't many. So far, they are:

My 2001 travel guide to the whole of Eastern Europe. It is massively out of date, even to the point that some countries it features have since split up. But then, it has maps, and city descriptions, and ever since I've bought it (which was for the most tame holiday I've had in my life; a package trip to Bulgaria), I've used it as an initial guide to plan some fantastic trips I will long remember. Within the last few weeks, I've flicked through it again, trying to figure out a child-friendly route around Poland...

My spice grinder. I've had it for about ten years too now. It came as a present, a food processor with a juicer attachment. I never used the juicer much and the blender jug was broken ages ago. I actually packed it and then pulled it out, because I need it to grind spices for everything from Indian curries to Hungarian sausages, and it would feel a bit miserable to do without them until whenever we move.

A selection of cookery books: A couple of Hairy Bikers, the canon Nigella Lawson, the Wahaca book - I went for recipes that had a wide range of different cuisines. I must not start collecting receipe books again before we move.

 My blue coat: I got it before the whole IVF thing kicked off. It's deeply unfashionable now. It was in the charity shop pile, but I pulled it out. Because I quite like it, if for nothing else.

What couldn't you live without?

Monday, 5 August 2013

Picking at an old scab

Mostly, I am fine about being infertile, now. I no longer have that endless well of rage and frustration inside me.

I rolled my eyes and tutted about all the fuss about the royal baby not because any mention of him was like daggers through my heart, but because I was genuinely bored of it dominating the news headlines (I think if I was still going through IVF the palaver would have sent me over the edge).

I managed to lend maternity clothes to a friend without crying over them. I smile at other kids in the park. I am far more normal than I used to be.

Some things still hurt a little though:

Friends' second pregnancies, particularly the ones that arrive right on time. I'm more happy for them than I was when they were pregnant the first time - frankly, the first time I was a seething mass of resentment and pain. But I still feel a little stab that their life will pan out in an easier and more predictable manner than ours ever will.

  • My period. It's not a hurt, exactly. More that it just feels weird that it turns up every month, but my natural cycle is physically divorced from conception efforts. I mean, I'm kind of glad it is there as it gives us more options, but it just seems a bit... inefficient.

  •  Thinking about the babies that didn't make it and the sheer awfulness of some of the stuff that happened when I was doing treatment. I tend not to dwell on this as I am very lucky, but sometimes the memories pop into my head unbidden.

  • My parents' occasional weird comments about kids really enjoying being around other kids and only children being lonely. I don't know why they do this, given that they're completely opposed to me doing more IVF. 

  • Scan photos - Possibly the most common thing that takes me back to IF is when someone posts a scan photo on Facebook; perhaps that's because I've had innumerably more unpleasant, stressful scans than ones that were fine. They still have the power to make me wince, although mercifully, no-one has shown me on in person; although I did see a film with a short bit of in utero footage and found that really, really uncomfortable.

So, time has healed things a lot, as has the Boy. The scars have faded in the sun and are almost invisible to the casual observer. But they're still there, although I think I'm very fortunate that things have turned out the way they are.

What things make you think about IF?

Friday, 2 August 2013

Bad blogging

I haven't updated in ages - life has rather got in the way.

The Boy is doing really well. He is almost, almost walking - he can stand for a few seconds unsupported until he realises what he's doing and grabs onto a table or chair.

He can manage odd words at surprising times. We were in the park and he picked a daisy. I picked one too and said "Look, David - a daisy!". To my immense delight, he gurgled "'Aisy!" back at me.

We've finally, finally made some progress with the house move. Our stuff goes into storage next week. I feel immensely happier knowing that it's been booked and yes, we are getting out of here.

Job-wise, things are about to get busier with the woodlice. But I've decided that, when we move at the end of the year, I'm going to quit. It'll be tough financially for a while, but manageable.

My husband has suddenly announced that he is going to start looking for different work too, as there's no progression where he is at the moment. He also agreed that we'd probably want to go for #2, although that will have to wait until after the move and all the job stuff is settled.

It feels much better having made all these decisions - I've sometimes felt quite angry with him over the summer as he just seemed so reluctant to make progress.