So like most first time mums I did the whole NCT schizzle.
It was ok, you know once you got used to the awkwardness associated with being forced together with a group of strangers with a single patch of common ground.
Like most groups of mums we did the whole discussing and comparing our babies development – sleeping, eating, moving, yada yada yada. It became apparent that the bonding process consisted largely of stealth boasting on behalf of your baby.
Prizes were awarded to babies in the following categories:-
- Longest amount of uninterrupted sleep
- Best at self settling
- Length of time between feeds
- Strongest neck
- Quickest to roll
- Most placid
- Most consistent routine
Anyway I was down with this, I knew the score. I didn’t actually give a rats arse but as part of the camaraderie I joined In regardless. It was mostly a load of bullshit – everyone knew everyone else was bullshitting too, but that was part of the fun.
Anyway fast forward 2.5 years i was pregnant again and decided, for some ridiculous reason, to do a refresher NCT course. Most of my buddies had returned to work or completed their families and i was scared i wouldn’t know how to fill my time bar for the passive aggressive company of NCT course mates.
But things had changed, times had moved on. From our first meet up post baby it became clear it was no longer about having the most well behaved baby but about having the most difficult baby.
We started with the most highly regarded of categories – sleep. Someone began with ‘Rosie’s still waking up every couple of hours to feed’ followed by another lady interjecting ‘Oh that would be amazing, Ben is pretty much hourly’.
There were tales of being up all night and babies waking for the day at 4am. Previously taboo methods of getting babies to sleep such as rocking or feeding were now considered perfectly acceptable.
And so it went on….sleep fighting, constant feeding, colic and general irritability were all things to be proud of.
I was completely thrown. I hadn’t prepared for this. I desperately wracked my brain for shit things to say about baby S.
I looked over at him happily playing and smiling away at his toys – dammit why did he have to be so lovely?!
Just as i was about to totally write him off, with spot on timing, he vomited up an entire feed; everyone looked over…. ‘Reflux‘ i said to a room of sympathetic eyes.
In my head we did a virtual high five – nice one baby!