I sometimes take a step back during conversations with my other half and have an “oh my god, I’m a parent” moment. The things we discuss now are worlds apart from our main topics of conversation before.
It’s not that we don’t still speak to each other about stuff other than the children, but rather we find ourselves frequently having the same chats over and over again about totally mundane child-related stuff. A fly on the wall would go belly up and die of boredom listening to us.
These things also drive home how much has changed in our lives. We used to discuss what restaurant and pub we were going to. Now we discuss whether we can fit in any TV and still get to bed early in preparation for the night time escapades our children will unleash on us.
Here are the things we talk about way too much since becoming parents:
What was the poo like? What colour was it? Was it firm? How much was there?
Nothing is as weird as the obsession I’ve developed over our children’s bowel movements. You use them as a barometer to let you know all is well. Because it’s a round-the-clock event the topic comes up A LOT. It’s particularly odd when you find yourself saying “that’s really good” with actual enthusiasm when your other half describes the perfect s**t your baby just had.
When did she sleep? How long for?
Even if you’re not in a strict routine with your kids sleep is a hot topic because it has a knock on effect to everything else like their mood and how much they eat. I like to know when their last nap was, how long they slept for and when they woke up in the morning.
What temperature is the nursery?
This one can erupt into a real tennis match of a debate. It’s 23.5 degrees in there. What should she be wearing? Would she be too hot in a sleeping bag? She’ll just kick blankets off? Surely just a vest is too cold if the temperature drops in the night. I have two Gro Eggs which on the one hand I think are amazing but on the other I wish I had never bought.
Shall we go to the park or soft play today?
The morning discussion about what we’re going to do that day is based around what the children would enjoy. I love a good walk and end up strolling for miles at the weekends with the buggy so I’m quite happy to gear things up around them. However it’s when you start debating the finer details of which soft play has the best slide, or remarking how “that playground has a much better sandpit” that I shake my head in disbelief.
What time did you get up? Not until 3am so it was a really good night.
Every morning there’s a debrief on the night before. We compare notes on sleep. How many times did the baby get up and how long was she up for? Did we both wake up when our toddler cried out? Was the baby really hungry when she woke up for the third time or was she just seeking comfort? It’s shocking to me now, given how I used to close my eyes and sleep for seven hours straight, that I consider any disturbance after 3am to be a good night.
Where’s Twinkly Bear?
All parents know you should never let the favourite toy out of your sight and if you do you must always be aware of where it was left. Someone should invent a GPS tracker for favourite toys because losing them just doesn’t bear thinking about. So when my husband asks where the bear that my daughter must have to go to sleep, believe me, I know instantly where it is.
How much did she eat today?
Similar to the sleep and poo situation, how much your child ate to the spoonful is a particularly big interest of mine now we’re weaning our youngest. I want to know what she ate, because if it was lots of meat, potatoes and yoghurt then I feel a thrill of hope that she might sleep through the night at last.
Look at this new random baby gadget/book/toy. Isn’t it brilliant?
We used to enjoy picking out cool things to decorate our house. Now we remark on how this new book Spinderella is really good because it’s got a lot of counting in it.
Shall we catch up on Masterchef? It’s only 7.30pm so you can still be in bed by 8.30.
Since Bubba Two arrived with her unpredictable night feeds I’ve been going to bed at about 9pm. This means we have a small window to watch something together on TV. If I didn’t get much shuteye the night before it needs to be something really easy to follow. House of Cards is saved for evenings when I don’t feel like a total zombie.
Look she just gurgled/rolled over/smiled/laughed/said this/crawled/counted to 10/clapped.
No day goes by without us discussing some kind of mundane achievement by our children. Obviously it’s not mundane to us, I love observing everything they do and am thrilled when they pick up new things. My toddler makes me laugh so much, she is hilarious and comes out with new gems every day. The trouble is when you start saying these things to other people. Your single mate Sarah doesn’t care that your six-month-old babbles mama and dada and looks set to crawl any day now. She wants you to leave the parent stuff at home and talk about grown-up stuff, like Love Island.
Do you find yourself saying weird stuff now you’re a parent? I would love to hear your stories.