Sunday, 8 September 2013

The 5 stages of...

Yet another week has passed and the dawning that life will never be the same resonates deep within YM and I.

To be fare Saturday Night fajita night may not, in the great scheme of things, be a great loss. In the same vein, sleeping until 8 am on the weekend, being able to allow more than one person to consume coffee in the presence of LP for fear that one, or both cups, will scald her and Sunday afternoon…. Um…. snuggles, may seem no great loss in place of the pleasure of the company of our little bundle of joy. Loss, none the less, requires some adjustment and the process of grief has to be undertaken somewhat akin to the ‘journey’ all X Factor contestants undertake. The Kubler-Ross Model indicates 5 stages….


“It’ll be no problem keeping fit and we will both be able to attend Bootcamp and Kettlebells” said Wendy as LP was delivered by the Stork. Several weeks later and we have both found that eating regular meals and ironing clothes has gone south as has maintaining personal hygiene, housework and topiary. There is no time for Bootcamp. The closest we will ever get is removing footwear from LP mouth as she now attempts to use any object lying about as a teething ring. Kettlebells only serve to mock by reminding me of every lukewarm cup of coffee that I have gulped down in the past few months for fear that a marauding LP will snatch it from me and become even more active than she already is.

Anger: Gentle reader, I understand that you may find it difficult to believe that YM and I would ever utter a cross word towards each other. Clearly we are both well balanced individuals. If you don’t believe me, we have the assessment reports to prove it. So there!! However, from time to time we have been known to have an occasional disagreement which is usually resolved easily and with little acrimony by YM telling me to go away, or words to that effect and/or linking pinkies. The latter being my preferred method. Add our LP into the mix and what was the occasional letting off of steam takes on a whole new meaning.

Me: “I left some poppers open as it was warm and I didn’t want LP to overheat.

YM: Shite! You still can’t do them all up can you?


Me: Did you put some chopped fresh Strawberries in that Petits Filous?

YM: I’ll chop you, ya fud!

The good thing about the undercurrent of anger is it does allow for the kissing and making up process which is, or at least was, always fun. Alas Sunday afternoons are not taken up snuggling or treating Bee stings… which is another story for another time. Sunday afternoons are taken up by playing catch up on basic household chores or visiting elderly relatives and keeping LP’s hands away from cat litter, neither of which are as much fun as a triple x throw down.

Bargaining : “Can you just give LP her breakfast whilst I pop to the loo”, said YM today as she headed upstairs with a pristine copy of Take a Break, whilst thrusting a bowl of fruit porridge into my unsuspecting hands. Bargaining, like negotiation has never been one of YM’s strong points really. I suspect YM takes the opportunity to carry out her ablutions whilst considering her plans for herself and LP. What clubs to attend, where to do lunch, what country to invade, that sort of thing. Although it may be more realistic that YM simply wishes to maximize her bathroom time realising that this opportunity will be lost for the next 8 hours until I, once again, return home and assist as best I can with caring for LP.

Depression: The reaction to any given stressful situation may cause one's mood to dip. Add to this the major stresses of having an LP, moving house and feeling obliged to catch code brown’s in one’s hand rather than let them fall onto the carpet which you have just cleaned after the last sans nappy code brown incident. As YM stated “how can something so beautiful produce something so unholy?” Add to this and the lack of exercise, sleep and snuggles within the household and we are potentially sitting astride a powder keg of doom and despondency. All this would clearly overwhelm most people and it may well have taken its toll on YM and I save for two protective factors.

1.       Chocolate.

2.       LP smiles.

Both of which increases the uptake of serotonin and cause waves of joy and laughter. It is indeed the little things in life that make all the difference.

Acceptance: The final stage. The stage of understanding, realisation and perhaps, even the stage of total and utter capitulation.
Some years ago I saw a slogan on the back of a Punks leather jacket. “So many people can control the way you die but only you can control the way you live”. This, and a few other mottos have stood me in good stead for some time. Having an LP in our lives completely takes over what little control I had, or thought I had, in my life. This is no bad thing really. The realisation that nothing will ever be the same was daunting but now it seems quite fantastic. I do occasionally like to feel that I retain some control. This usually takes the form of ‘scoring’ one  of LP’s Petits Filous . YM and I waited for LP to come along for a long time. The daydreams and fantasy of what parenthood might hold have proven to be just that. The reality is even more amazing. It’s about seeing the little things, the funny things, the almost words, the almost steps, the smiles. Yes, the smiles.


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