“Worn to a ravelling”

The moment you have a child your future possibilities for sleep are completely in the lap of the Gods. Every parent knows this, but you don’t really know it until it is actually too late.

I crawled through the first years of motherhood on my hands and knees in utter exhaustion and I can’t say it hasn’t improved because it has. The eldest is a paragon of virtue remaining neatly arranged in her own bed all night, every night. She even has the decency to lie-in a bit. The youngest however is a different matter. Since a babe in arms she signed some kind of secret hideous lifetime timeshare to occupy the parental bed and although she starts every night in her own pit she invariably makes her way into mine 75% of the time.

At 6 she is too big. She is too elbowy and sharp-kneeed, she is too leg-drapey and hair-tickly and she keeps me awake. She ignores requests to vacate and just burrows further into the mattress like a mite. Worst of all she clutches items of desire in her sleep and brings them with her. It turns out last night I was not sleeping with luminous green slime called Halloween Goo. I am stubborn though. As much as she disturbs my sleep, I refuse to play musical beds. If I go down that road I end up in a narrow single with a dog, and a cat and then she often follows me back and gets in there too. It is a nightmare.

So this is how I was listening to Radio 4 this morning before Farming Today was even on. There was some programme that went like this.

This woman with a rather saccharine lilt was saying how it was miracle that she was no longer crippled by her back. She had been on Incapacity Benefit for 12 years. That’s not working for 12 years you know, because your back hurts. Then she had had this miracle. Someone had suggested she remove her piercing. They surely said whereabouts on her body this piercing was located, but because I was trying to sleep I must have missed it. A piercing that crippples you for 12 years? Where the hell was it? I’m thinking a bolt in her neck. Anyway, let that be a lesson to you all. Metal junk in your body is unnecessary and evil.

Then thank goodness that was over and I had Clare Balding and her Ramblings round Glasgow’s Necropolis with a load of women history detectives. Rather unkindly I admit, it has crossed my mind that the wee small hours are the time programme schedulers let women on the radio because no-one is bloody listening. The theory is flawed because Ramblings is on during the day and rightly so because Clare is still excellent, even when I would rather be in the Land of Nod than wandering around a cemetery in Glasgow. Then I had to suffer the actual Farming Today, but I hung on long enough for the Today without the farming, wherein the great John Humphrys was caught out reading a piece on “peasants and phartridges” which turned out to be a typo from Simon Barnes’ article in today’s Times. Tut, tut.

By the time we got to torture in Iraq and Rooney as the greediest man alive (you’d never guess it to look at his face would you?) I was comatose. So no song lyrics in my head this morning, just a bit of a headache, a stiff back (no piercings, STUPID woman) and a distinct affinity with the Tailor of Gloucester.

Simpkin, alack I am undone. No more twist.

Pity our cat can't make tea

*These are the ramblings of a sleep-starved person so if they make no sense (nonsense) what else did you expect. I might be pulling myself together to predict the loser of the Pacing Rost Trophy at Donny later…

Posted on October 23, 2010, in Cats, Children, Radio and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

  1. Brilliant! Although I’m not a mother (I don’t think, although I have maternal tendencies 😉 ) you describe the perfect ‘Mum’. You missed out the ‘I am worn to a ravelling’ bit, which is what busy mums are.

    It’s a long time since I had my kids in the bed, but I do recall that they’re always red hot, can’t keep still, take up an inordinate amount of room for their small size, and, invariably, they get you up earlier than you wanted to be simply because they’re bloody uncomfortable little b’stards! I always preferred the dog keeping my feet warm, but when I had three at one time growling for the best spot, they were as bad as the kids.


  2. The dog’s crippling my feet for me OS, don’t worry about that!

  3. You’ve got to become the elbower not the elbowee. I’m too young to have children (hence,the junior) but the cat knows its place. Aim for the fatty bits. Titus mills is my faint hope for the RP trophy (Kieren’s choice).

  4. Hey Jamie, I make you right on all counts.

    Titus is going to kick some butt on Town Moor cos he’s gonna improve over the extra distance 😉

  5. I heard those programmes too..best of the day. World Service has become a very gloomy listen, lots on famine and torture. I can cope with that during daylight hours and am even able to be responsible for making an appropriate moral response. But in the small hours I need Clare Balding and similar.

    On the bed issue, have you tried moving into Cassia’s bed when she takes up residence in yours?

  6. Fri 9pm G finally sleeps
    2am M wakes and gets in the bed
    6am G wakes and gets in the bed
    Limp through Saturday day
    Sat 10pm G finally sleeps (not in her bed)
    6am M wakes
    This has been this weekend’s pattern, I look forward to see what happens in the week to come…

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