What do people (women) do on maternity leave?
People - some people - have asked me this. Like one friend said to me, basically, what do you do all day?
First of all, I should say, that being at home is not quite the party I led you to believe last week. It's nice. It's lovely. It's easier than running a business, but there's a relentlessness to the responsibility that is quite overwhelming, sometimes. Like, some days, when D comes home, I just give him Zaphod and go and have a rest and beleive me I was never the kind of woman who needed a lie-down during the day. Conversely, I often used to operate in two competing time-zones simultaneously (Asia and the US) and could survive on little sleep for sure, but it was different.
Back to what Zaphod and I do.
We have spent a lot of quality time with the PVR. I am in Season Three of the West Wing, have The Wire waiting for me, and have watched all flavours of CSI and NCIS multiple times. I've also been catching up on girl-flicks: this week, A Boyfriend for Christmas, Mean Girls and Legally Blonde 2. Next week, geek-girl flicks, including The Net.
Aside: you know at the end of Mean Girls when Lindsay Lohan breaks up the plastic crown to share it because she's seen the light of goodness? Well, she throws out more crown than there actually is. The continuity people were not on top of this.
Also, I've got back to cooking. This is good because in the last three months of my pregancny I basically stopped functioning, apart from for work. I couldn't walk (annoying pregnancy complication called SPD (I dare you not to click that link if you're a woman - it's really better not to know. You'd still like to have kids, right? Don't ask people about their birth experiences, and don't ask about complications), and I was in a bad mood, and I couldn't go upstairs, even. People don't know, because for work I just had to carry on, but I was living on pain killers and the kindness of friends (Z and J) who filled our freezer with home cooked goodies as I couldn't even make a piece of toast. Now, I've made chilli and banana cake, the inaugural humous (due the talent of my in-house Natural Search Director, I'm now number two on the whole internet for humous, whodathunkit), and next week I might try and make curry.
When you have a baby everything takes longer. So we can't really do more than one "thing" a day - today we went to visit a sick friend.
Mostly what I do is: change nappies. Feed. Burp. Feed. Change Nappies. Play with Zahpod. Cuddles. Change nappies. Washing (there is a lot more washing than you can frankly ever imagine). If there's time, I play on the interweb, including doing our Tesco order. Half-read a paper/book/article.
Sunday morning: I wrote this on Friday, and it never got finished, which is the story of my life right now. One friend said to me "you'll never have more quarter-drunk cups of tea in your whole life".
Or half-written blog posts.