Respect to Single Parents

Relentless is the word I heard most in describing parenting. It feels the most accurate, along with Groundhog Day. Today Runner Bean wouldn’t settle for more than 10 mins before needing a cuddle / feed / nappy change. I couldn’t do anything non RB survival related as almost as if he sensed my attention going elsewhere he’d cry and reel me back in.

My dedication was sometimes rewarded with a glorious baby ‘a-weeee’ squeak as he discovers his voice, or a curious ‘read’ of a poster on the wall. But mostly, I didn’t feel rewarded, I felt physically and emotionally tired.

By midday I longed for daddy’s return home for lunch (a benefit of living in the regions) even though he spent half the time on a work call. It meant one less nappy change and feed for me and a real adult’s presence.

Now I sit writing this as I pump. I’m doing both boobs at the same time, at a higher – more painful – setting than usual, because I’d just like to achieve something (other than Nutella on toast and Cream Egg speed bingeing at lunch) and FFS I can at least express an acceptable amount of milk.

I only have one baby and I need the permanent help of another. Seriously single parents, I salut you. 

How the fuck do you do it?

I’ve just stopped expressing. I managed 150ml in 16 mins – big teeth grin smiley – but my nipples are the size of genetically modified grapes – sobbing smiley. A friend said my nipples will decrease in size again eventually and I pray to my agnostic god for that to be true. Though I can’t forget the train conversation I ‘overheard’ (totally listened in on) of friends describing mangled post breastfeeding nipples as if they’d been describing a high speed car crash victim. I may need to start saving now for a post baby boob job. I don’t plan on accepting the pendulums, ‘like the swinging piano timer’, I was told to prepare for.

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