I am proud to introduce you to the newest member of our family.
Finn made his debut in the world on 5 January via my stomach, successfully evading a scalpel, suction hose and over-enthusiastic anesthesiologist.
Despite watching the ‘Mutant Babies’ DVD, I wasn’t prepared for the dubious first impression. Finn looked a bit like E.T. mated with a frog. In my defense, it didn’t help that he was blue and covered in goo. Judging by his outraged roars, Finn was equally unimpressed with us.
During the months he spent camped out in my uterus, I had formed an impression of what my child would be like. Finn was completely different; yet within 24 hours I couldn’t imagine any alternative to his reality.
I always thought Andrew’s genes would spank mine into submission and I was right. Finn has huge, dark blue eyes which I’m pretty sure will eventually be brown; fat little cheeks; and a wide mouth. I’m also grateful he inherited Andrew’s nose, rather than my prominent proboscis. However, since he wees and/or poops on me during every change, all indications suggest he has his mother’s sense of humour.
He also takes after his father in temperament. So far, Finn has been a total joy – placid and laid-back. Some people have been kind enough to suggest this is due to my parenting skills, but since said skills are largely limited to not getting his head stuck in drains, I’m pretty sure it’s mostly his personality.
He also smells delicious.
The last few weeks have been a blur, time blending into itself. I couldn’t tell you whether it’s morning or evening, and I have – at best – a one in seven chance of identifying what day of the week it is.
I’m not sure how someone who weighs less than 3kg and sleeps so much has had such a profound effect on our lives, yet everything has changed utterly. The other day I was straightening my hair and thought, “What is the point of this? I mean . . . just . . . WHAT is the POINT?” (The self-doubt may have been due to doing my hair while loading the washing machine between spoonfuls of muesli.)
Also, I can’t believe how much laundry Finn generates. I normally run a load during the red-eye feed at 03:00hrs.
But mainly, I love my son with a ferocity and compulsion to hold him safe, for which I was completely unprepared. I would totally kill for my child if serving double-life for manslaughter weren’t ultimately detrimental to his upbringing. My feelings are so intense I am often required to under-compensate with lame jokes like how I previously thought it impossible to love somebody with a hairline that started at his eyebrows.
I’m delighted motherhood has added new depths to my shallowness.
Although the first couple of weeks have been fairly brutal, I can honestly say I’ve cherished every moment.
Not so much the time, early in the morning, when Finn cried and in my sleep-deprived state I thought Andrew had picked him up and handed him to me but I couldn’t find him. Andrew woke me as I plucked desperately at the bedclothes, wailing “MY BABY! MY BABY! WHERE’S MY BAAABYYY?”
There are also plenty of occasions I’m in tears, usually after I’ve been mean to my mum (who’s doing a first-class job keeping house) or because I’m exhausted. But mainly when I look down at my son and cry because I am so incredibly, unbelievably fortunate and lucky enough to know it.