oh no! it’s winter. it may as well be summer.
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oh no! it’s winter. it may as well be summer.

Night sky
Waking up in the early morning is cruel

a day on repeat

My day began this morning in the usual way – stumbling with my eyes closed, hands outreached in front of me like a zombie, clutching my phone and walking what felt like a mile to my son’s room, which is just across the hall. It was just after midnight – 12.03am to be precise. I had been asleep for just over two hours.

My son was crying and calling out for me. He’s been sick so there’s snot and body fluids being coughed and sneezed out all over the place. The light in the bathroom was on, as it always is, providing a you’re-being-interrogated-by-the-gestapo-spotlight-like-glare to guide the way past the toys and clothes that lay strewn across the hallway. Housekeeping is not really my thing.

Before I get to his room, I detour to the toilet. I can’t walk past one without using it. And having children has meant that I no longer have to worry about not being able to pee. I can pee anytime, even when I don’t want to! I sit down on the toilet in the dark. Not even at 12.03am can I pee in peace. The calling out “mummy” from his bedroom gets louder and louder. He knows that I’m awake and, like anyone born after 1990, wants immediate attention. I whisper-shout that I “can’t make it come any faster” and quickly finish up. I wash my hands and open his door, saying “shhhh, we’ve talked about making so much noise”. What I really want to shout is “SHHHH, YOU’RE MAKING MUMMY WANT ALCOHOL”.

Then I lift my leg over the sides of the bed and collapse next to him and the snot. He reaches for my arm and said “Mummy can you please cuddle me”. At that moment, despite the early hour and the rude awakening, I felt loved. Even though I was covered in snot and sleeping in a bed with a four year old child. A child that has only slept through the night a handful of times. A child that needs me to lie in his bed every night patting his leg until he falls asleep.

the smug parents

I hate those conversations in the kitchenette at work with new fathers.

“Oh how’s everything going with baby”, I say.

“It’s so wonderful”, he says. “Little baby Joseph is already sleeping through the night”.

“Oh, that’s wonderful, how’s Megan going with it all. It was such a big change for me”, I say.

“She’s just so amazing. Joseph is already in a routine and blah blah we’re amazing!.”, he gushes.

The new-smug parent. We all go through it. The bravado before having children and the endless judgement of those parents whose children won’t eat vegetables and don’t sleep through the night. “Our children will never do that” or “I can’t believe she is feeding her baby non-hipspter food”. Cue the outrage. The swagger usually continues for a good few months after birth. Sometimes it never stops.

Sometime is it very overt “Oh Samantha is such a great swimmer, dancer, runner, and gymnast. She’s in the top 3 in her class.”

Sometimes, it is the humble brag “Look at Samantha, all gangly, tall and thin. She’s like a giant, a skinny giant”.

I could moan for forever about this and how inadequate it makes me feel. All I have to say is have empathy people. Don’t be so smug.

winter in Brisbane

But that’s not how this story ends. For the next five hours, my darling son, made relaxing sleep impossible. Coughing and sneezing, propelling snot across the bed. Then kicking blankets off, and waking me to tell me he is cold.

It’s “winter” here in Brisbane. If you are from around here you would chuckle at that. Winter in south-east Queensland is warmer than summer in England. I always laugh when I’m walking to work and it is, maybe 8-10 degrees, and there are people dressed in long coats, scarves and gloves. Clutching their coffee like it is their life blood. Okay, I’ll give them that. Coffee is life.

My husband hates the cold. The kids have warm winter flannelette pjs and two doonas on their beds. We also sleep with two doonas on our bed as well. Plus my husband wears tracksuit pants and a jersey to bed in winter. And we sleep with the heater on – ducted heating –around 20/21 degrees. During my nightly trek to my son’s room, I usually turn it off or at least drop the temperature to 18 degrees. But it always seems to be back on and pumping out warm air and money whenever I wake up in the morning.

Winter at our house

That’s why I need to lose weight. You’re probably thinking it’s because I’m so fat that I feel really hot all of the time. Well, of course that it is true. But the real reason is not what you think.

A few years ago we desperately needed a new bed and thought that it would be a good idea to buy a latex bed. “So comfortable” said the salesman. “Will last for 10 plus years”, he said.

If you take away nothing else from this blog post, than this, I will have saved you needless and endless suffering – never ever, in all of your life buy a latex bed. Don’t do it. You will be sleeping on molten lava every night for at least 10 years. That’s 3650 days of literal hell. The heat that this bed generates would power a small town! Learn from our mistake, our very costly mistake. This bed set us back $3000 and, because of that, we have to keep it until it disintegrates or we move into an old age home, whichever comes first.

To recap after the latex-bed-dilemma-detour, back to why I need to lose weight. It’s not because I feel hot all of the time. It’s so that I can wear a tshirt and knickers to bed in winter. The combination of the sweltering heat of the bed, the blankets and the ducted heating means that I have to dress like it’s summer.

But I can’t. It’s too embarrassing when I think of the possible horror where I go to bed before my husband, dressed in a tshirt and knickers and in the sweltering oasis of our bedroom, I unconsciously, in my sleep, kick off the covers to cool myself on the lava bed. Then, when my husband comes to bed, he sees me lying there. With my tshirt now probably crooked and pulled tight up because it can’t maintain a hold around my stomach forever and my bum on full display.

And because I’m asleep (probably having a nightmare about this very situation), I’m not doing anything to correct the situation – like holding in my stomach (it really makes a small difference, I tell myself), or screaming for the lights to be turned off.

Instead, I’ve got to sleep in the bed made of molten rock in long pyjama pants and a singlet top. Right now my summer pyjamas aren’t even an option because they don’t fit me. Yes, I could go and buy another pair of pyjamas. But I’m not ready to face the reality of that size bracket.

So that’s why I have to lose weight. So that I can survive winter in our household.

Surely I’m not the only person in this predicament.  Right? Why do you have to / want to lose weight? Do you have any horror stories of your own?

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