What does a condemned woman do in her last hours of freedom?
Condemned in so much as in two days she will be the mother of not only a toddler… but also a new born baby; a mother of two boys, and therefore, probably not be able to leave the house until 2017.
Yesterday, two days before our lives are to change forever… again, I found myself in an odd state of freedom. My partner needed to go into work to finish off as much as he could before his Paternity leave starts and good old grandma had the toddler.
I was alone.
That was odd enough.
I also had nothing to do. This was momentous.
I had spent three entire days transforming our house into a show home complete with toddler sanctuary and an A-Z of baby paraphernalia. I was all caught up on Love Island. It was mind boggling.
I couldn’t remember the last time this had happened; The last time the house was silent, I didn’t have a long list of anxiety producing “to do’s”, I wasn’t expected to go somewhere and no one wanted me to piss in a tube.
Activities in my last hours of freedom
1/ Spend some time on myself: I spent half an hour straightening my hair and looking at how hairy my face has become in the mirror. I rarely get to look decent anymore so this was quite a novelty. I felt a bit selfish. Surely there was a dishwasher somewhere that needed emptying? Must buy tweezers. And wrinkle cream. And Gin.
2/ Leave the house, alone (dom, dom, dommm!) No buggy to push up our steep hill. No toddler to wrestle into the straps. No bus to catch. No deadline. No emergency nappies to buy. I waddled past the park. A short waddle of freedom.
3/ Visit tiny shops. I decided to go into all the shops near me that I have never been able to go into as they are 1/ too small for a buggy and 2/ full of ornaments and breakables.
First stop the very posh looking cheese shop that caught my eye when we moved here – and if I am honest, is the reason we moved here. I have never been in as you can barely get your foot in the door – let alone a buggy. I walk in. Immediately the owner leaps up from behind the counter to stare at me. He stares at me as I stare at his cheese, so to speak. Silence. Just the stench of cheese. It’s about 200 degrees. I think this would be a good occasion to whistle. I pretend to read the cheese labels and carefully back out. Turns out, I wasn’t missing much. I shall get my baby bells from the co-op thank you Sir.
Then I go into a gorgeous gift shop and spend about an hour just looking at all the delights – here I try the forth activity:
4/ Buy something just for me. At least I try and buy something for myself just for fun and find it impossible. I used to love buying things for myself; jewellery, accessories, silly little spoils. Now I find it near impossible. Everything looks frivolous, expensive, not needed. All I look for are things for the toddler. And £12.50 for a selfie stick? That’s just crazy. I end up in the toy shop looking for things for my son – even though we will have to move again soon just to fit all the toys he already owns into the house.
5/ Feel lonely. As an only child I haven’t really ever suffered from feelings of loneliness – you are used to being alone and entertaining yourself. Now I find it quite unsettling being alone – you constantly feel like you’ve forgotten something, and you realise how often you use your toddler as a legitimate prop for when you walk around chatting to yourself. So I call my partner and as he has finished work I ask to meet him for a cup of tea. I presume he will turn me down as he’s knackered (standard) but to my delight he says yes! It’s a date.
6/ Spend some quality time with the other half and realise we are only capable of talking about the toddler and child to come. I am stared at by the coffee shop customers like I am the main attraction – a blimp. I should have got ‘Cafe Nero’ tattooed on my stomach and earned some money as a giant promotional aid.
We both feel a little strange. Go to co-op and buy toddler a Cars DVD. Get some less pretentious cheese. Go to the toy shop and get a few more things for the toddler.
7/ Waddle home and realise freedom ain’t all it’s cracked up to be – anymore.
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