Airs and Graces

Although I realised early on that things had changed irrevocably, it wasn’t until a few weeks ago that I finally had to admit to myself that I had completely let go of any previous airs and graces. The moment came as I was exiting a jumping castle head first, with my skirt above my neck, while clutching a screaming two-year-old’s right ankle, as I attempted to persuade her that it was indeed time to leave the party and go home.

I’ll admit that I’m a little bit A-type. But before I had kids I simply labelled this particular personality trait as doing things to a certain standard. My car was always pretty clean. I always left the house wearing clothes without food stains on them. And whenever appearing in public I tried not to make a complete fool of myself by a) screaming at the top of my voice or b) running wild-eyed through a shopping centre. Lately I’ve been doing a combination of a) and b) pretty often (who knew two-year-olds were so damn fast?!).

So yes, things have certainly changed. These days it’s a common occurrence for me to find leftover porridge bits in my hair, peanut butter smears on my jeans and crusty yoghurt hiding somewhere in the folds of my jersey. In fact I sometimes imagine that Rachel and I are playing some sort of bizarre game where she waits until I’m distracted and then surreptitiously smears whatever foodstuff she can find on my clothes (while my back is turned). She nearly always wins this game because I generally only discover her transgression at about 11am – while she’s safely ensconced at playschool and I’m about to attend an important work meeting.

And while we’re on the topic, let’s discuss the loss of decorum that comes with pregnancy too. As I’m now twelve weeks pregnant I’ve been observing these changes recently like some sort of mad, moody scientist – here are some:

  1. Skin like a foreign planet. Your skin might have been predictable before you got pregnant. Now it’s not. At times it might be as dry and gritty as the Sahara and then the next day you may find strange craters or bumps appearing out of nowhere.
  2. Clumsiness. Before pregnancy my husband used to say I was like a graceful ostrich (i.e not very graceful at all) but in the throes of pregnancy I am even worse. I drop plates, trip over chairs and generally do my best to hurt myself.
  3. Big Foot. Yesterday I was trying to do the healthy thing and exercise but do you know how long it took me to get my feet inside my shoes? A full 15 minutes. They were those kind of takkies that have very stiff laces and my feet had swelled to such alarming proportions that they just wouldn’t go in. I felt like an ogre trying to squeeze my foot into a glass slipper.

So yes, airs and graces have taken a back seat. In fact, they may even be locked up in the boot of the car that is my life – rolling around until I have time to dust them off and give them a try again. Still, this car is fun to drive. It may be filled with juice stains, biscuit packets, dirty tissues and abandoned toys but it is certainly a car filled with love – and that’s good enough for me.

Image taken from DesignLab.

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