A child gives birth to a zombie

 Through the many challenges of being a new-mom, Harshikaa Udasi shows you ways to lighten up, and take the little one’s antics in your stride.

A boss of mine once described her five-month baby as a little lump with liquid and sound coming out of either end. Clearly it was not one of her most perky days when epithets like drooly-looly, choco-face, babush and other unfathomable ‘mom’isms would flow out, but that description left me aghast. The how-could-you look was written all over my face. I was 23 then. Single, fancy-free and kids were simply awww-worthy creatures.

My uni-dimensional idea stuck to me till my Braxton-Hicks, real labour and unreal pain got the better of me three years ago and out popped a baby. A boy. Just to digress a bit, prior to that day, did I have the same 24 hours or was it lesser? Or more?

Whatever that was, I certainly want a dollop of it back. (To the Lord: Make that a large one. Please.) Side note #2: Have you wondered how we sail through our pregnancies thanks to google, gynaecs and girlfriends, but how we are left to figure out the path after that? Side note #3: The bloke who said that ‘A child gives birth to a mother’ should rectify it and say ‘A child gives birth to a zombie who can nurse, change diapers, pick up rattles with the free hand, push the pram in position with her hips and give icy cold looks to anyone who may dare disturb her child.’ Didn’t I add simultaneously? Sorry. I am going into momzilla mode.

Once you are done with the feeding, oiling, bathing, swaddling, one would think the baby would pretty much take over things and be, well, independent. Mine did. NO being the first voice of independence. He broke my heart with “Enough. No song.” Been there, done that? Or take this: K (at two): "Give me scissors." Me: "No." K: "Please give me the knife also." What??!! Aargh!

At 3, we have started having more meaningful conversations. K with dad: “Will RTO uncle catch me if I drive your car?” Unsuspecting dad: “Yes, I suppose. You have to be…” K: “…18 for driving. So I have an idea. I will fly a plane instead.” Dad looks at me questioningly. Excuse me, you think I’d put these ideas into his head? K is responsible for the growing ‘love’ between the spouse and me. Recently fancying a horse for a pet, he enthusiastically told me we could keep it in the garage.
I told him we’d need dad’s permission. (It helps to rely on the man for the final decision, chuck feminist ideas.) His question to dad: “Mamma wants to know where we can keep our pet horse?” Dad: “In her cupboard would be a good idea.” Exchange dirty look.

In spite of all this, take heart dears! I am not always the helpless victim. After three years of war training, I have some aces up my sleeve, too.

The straight face

He says something outrageously funny, but terribly embarrassing. Straight face comes to the rescue.

He throws a tantrum in a room full of pampering aunts and grandparents. Straight face reporting, sir. He engages in loud singing just when spouse and you are discussing the grocery list. Straight face it is.

The big eyes

To be used in conjunction with flared nostrils. Don’t ever go overboard with this one else you’ll end up with wonderstruck saucer eyes, which only encourages. Always are met with the complaint to dad: “She’s showing me big eyes.” Or: “No big eyes. I want happy mamma.” Errr, please control the urge to do a tribal dance after this please.

The Zen look

Unwritten rule for moms – When you want your kid’s immediate attention, look happy and peaceful. Pick up a book to read, find a couch to laze on, if nothing else, simply stare out with a beatific smile. Get ready to bask in the attention of your kid. Works even when he is watching his favourite cartoon show.

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