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My Look? Dragged through a hedge backwards!

on Fri Jul 05 2019

‘What is that?’

‘When did I have something green?’

‘God I hope that brown stain is coffee and not remnants of a bumsplosion?’

I have said all of the above sentences and my daughter is two. I often catch a look at myself in the mirror and wonder where the old Sarah has gone, the one who ensured she was always neat with clean hair, make up and tidy nails. She seems to have been replaced with a woman who has been dragged through a muddy field by her hair – a mum bun hides all sins. On a quiet day I can keep Lady S distracted long enough to make myself presentable, maybe put some make up on and put my hair in one of those donut things that make my bun look neat and tidy all day. Most days though, I have a twenty minute ‘slot’ in which to pull some clothes on, sort her changing bag and head out the door.

When Lady S was first born I was meticulous when it came to how she looked. The smallest mark on her clothes warranted a complete outfit change.  If – god forbid – the mark turned into a stain then the babygrow was thrown away. I must have spent around an hour a day wiping her face with a baby wipe. As for me, I was always neat, although not at the same level as I kept Lady S. My clothes were clean and my hair was normally pulled back into a ponytail. The bags around my eyes are like suitcases now and my eyes have the reddish hue of the walking dead – people genuinely look at me with the pity look as they try and work out if I am sick or not.

As for my clothes, I don’t think I have had clean clothes on for a full day since she was born. It’s amazing how quickly you adjust to having clothes stained with milk, vomit, juice or other bodily fluids on. Sometimes I don’t even notice until someone mentions it and even then, there is no embarrassment, it just is what it is. I’ve become adept at making milk stained tops work for me – I just don’t have the time, energy or inclination to change my top or trousers every time I get something on it. Yesterday, I had a meeting and had managed to get myself dolled up, only to have her rub her toothbrush on my leg when heading out the door. A quick baby wipe and I had to leave.

Two years on and things have changed, only in the sense that the mess has now gained the ability to move through the house. I thought the newborn stage was difficult and – don’t get me wrong, it’s hard – but the toddler stage is a whole new level. From the moment Lady S is up we are on the go. I keep her in her pyjamas until after breakfast because she likes to share her food with her clothes…and the floor…and her teddies (obviously the ones that are not wipeable because why would she want to make my life easier.) She can normally keep clean until we are out the door but when we are at the baby groups, at the park or simply walking to the shops, she finds a way of making herself dirty. Sometimes I sit and try to think back to a place where she could have possibly made that mess but it’s one of life’s great mysteries.

It isn’t all doom and gloom though. Occasionally I get a toddler free night and time to get ready (it is a rarity but it does happen) and the reaction of people that have seen me day to day is priceless. I can get the same reaction as a celebrity simply by washing my hair!