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Keeping Everyone Happy

by Jessica Amey

We have been a family of four for nearly a month now.

The period of adjustment has come to an end and life is starting to feel normal again.

As the mother in the family I feel like it is my role to make sure everyone is happy, something which I probably stopped doing around the time I feel pregnant and morning sickness kicked in.

I really struggled with this pregnancy and didn’t feel like myself at all, even following Tiger’s birth I wasn’t at my best. I felt dizzy, weak and had terrible sciatica which meant I was hobbling around for a few weeks. I find it hard to think about much else when I feel crap and it makes me pretty selfish so we haven’t been having as much fun together as a family for a little while now but I am pleased to say that for the first time in nearly a year I feel like my old self and am ready to get life back on track.

Mr C and I rarely argue but the last couple of weeks have seen us having more than one ‘disagreement’. Babies can have a real effect on your relationship but in those first few weeks, they take up a lot of your mind space and it can be hard to think about anything other than how to get some sleep. Or rather that’s what my mind space is filled with because I am breastfeeding so Tiger is mainly my responsibility while Mr C deals mainly with Cherry. So while I am thinking about why Tiger woke every hour to feed, he is thinking about how he has done loads of around the house and should therefore be able to go down to his workshop and work on cars all evening – CUE ME GOING MAD!

I can remember us having pointless arguments when Cherry was a baby, only they were mainly based around socks and whose job it was to wash them! Luckily this time having Cherry means that we have to find solutions to the problems a lot quicker as it’s not very nice for her otherwise.

This weekend saw us sorting out some house rules with the main aim being to stop thinking about ourselves and to enjoy our time as a family by making sure we have lots of fun together.

This is going to be done by restricting telly (for Cherry), iPhone (for me) and laptop (for Mr C) usage. Computers are banned until Cherry is in bed, I work from home so there will be times when I need to use mine in the day but it will only be for a short amount of time.

Rationing out ‘free time’. I think having a rota is good for everyone and Mr C now knows that he can go swimming two evenings a week, meet up with friends on either a Fri / Sat and have one Saturday a month to do a track day in his car. There are four Saturdays in a month so once the kids are a bit older they will be able to have one each and decide what we do, as will I. Then on Sundays we can do things as a family.

Mr C and I are going to make sure that at least one evening a week we don’t use our computers and watch a film together instead.

Life is too short to be unhappy and kids grow up so quickly, I would hate to look back in ten years time wishing that we’d had more fun together. So far everyone seems happy with the new arrangement and on Saturday we went to Great Wood in the Quantocks to enjoy our first proper day out as a family of four.

We are still all laughing about how Cherry picked up a piece of something and asked what it was only for Mr C and I to yell out ‘ARGHHH IT’S HORSE POO, PUT IT DOWN!’

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