Toddler Freshers


It's official. I'm an adult.

To be honest I thought I became an adult when I turned 18..or when I gave birth to another human being, but admittedly I was wrong.

When you are sitting in the middle of your living room floor, crying real tears, because your hoover just blew up and you'll never get the hang of this housewife thing and you don't know how you'll afford a replacement hoover on top of the replacement TV, microwave, and 3 cups that you broke...THAT is the definition of adulthood.

So yeah, my Fresher's week has been a LITTLE stressful. But it's also been a LOTTLE fun. If you think your Freshers week was crazy - try moving a toddler to a new city, a new house, a new bedroom, a new creche...and then tell me if you still want kids when you're older. Years ago, when I used to imagine myself at University, I didn't think my housemate would be a one year old. I thought I would spend every night of Freshers making questionable decisions in questionable clubs - instead I spent my evenings perfecting my questionable bedtime routine and cleaning questionable substances off my carpet. But here we are, and I wouldn't change a thing. Here's a few things I've learned this week.

- Spaghetti hoops taste good with everything.
I can't cook. It's a well known fact. When you're pregnant you should be sent to cookery classes instead of stupid ante-natal classes, where you learn how to give birth and then forget every single thing when you're actually in labour. (I don't know about the rest of y'all but when it came down to it, I just wanted the drugs). Anyway, I used to pinch bits and pieces from mum and dads dinner for Reuben. I would have something already made up..usually from JC Stewarts - those salads are on point! But now I'm trying to cook and I've been quite successful, if I do say so myself. I even made salmon!! But every single day I've had to replace something burnt/undercooked/resembling a foot.. for some spaghetti hoops. And you know what - they are delicious.

- I love being a student.
Confession time - I wasn't sure if I would feel comfortable with other students, especially those coming straight from school. But I LOVE it. And I LOVE everyone I have met. Both staff and students at Queens are incredibly supportive and I am so grateful to be there. You see, I'm actually not sure what my maturity levels are anymore. Sometimes I feel like a 40 year old woman, worrying about providing for my family and getting the latest offers in Asda. Sometimes I feel like a toddler with a crazy exuberance and energy for life. So it's been good for me to be a 20 year old. A normal 20 year old. Who doesn't always have toddler snotters on her dress.

- I hate the smell of vinegar.
On one of my many drives to Belfast (I'm going to write a full blog on how much I hate that drive) to move my colossal amount of belongings, a bottle of balsamic vinegar smashed in my car. And it dripped all over my food, my house, my pavement, and my girl Kayla. As a friend I definitely come with a lot of catches.

-Post isn't exciting anymore
It's either a useless advertisement leaflet or a useless bill. So disappointing. I used to run for the post. Now I very slowly walk and very slowly kick it into the corner until it isn't visible anymore.

- Reuben and I are not the strong independent people that I thought we were.
He has had trouble settling into his new creche and every morning he screams his head off and digs his nails into me. Now he's absolutely fine after 10 minutes and I'm pretty sure he secretly loves it. But the first week was traumatic. And that is no exaggeration. Each morning I went to my car and sobbed my heart out. I thought it was extremely unfair of me to uproot him from everything and everyone that he knows. The one thing that he did know was me. And I was abandoning him to go to uni!! It was so unlike us. I cannot stress this enough. Reuben and I both like our own space, We were pretty independent. I know that sounds ridiculous but we've never had any trouble being apart. I've never been that mum who cries when she leaves her baby at creche for the first time. And Reuben was never that baby who cried when other people baby sat him. But this week we've been an incredibly clingy, needy, and always cuddling duo. We are so dependent on each other and we're 100% in this together. Spaghetti hoops and all.

- My mum has washed a lot of dishes.
Seriously guys, there is always something to wash. It never stops. Never. Just when you think it has stopped, you crave a cup of tea..and then there's another darn cup to clean. It's a vicious circle of laziness and tea cravings.
There's 2 of us. It's been 1 week. And I don't want to see another dirty plate in my life. My mum had a family of 5 and has been married for 25 years. I keep imagining all of the dishes she has washed in her lifetime and I want to hug her. This honestly has hit me hard this week.

- Sometimes I parent well
A week ago my son shared a bedroom and a single bed with me. He woke up every hour and had milk on tap.
Now he sleeps in his own bed, in his own room, and he leads the way at bed time. I don't hear or see him until approx. 10-12 hours later when he shouts MUMMY from his room with a massive good morning smile.
That is a dream. That is a victory. And I am so thankful for it.
Don't get me wrong, it was hard work and Sunday night was the worst night I have ever experienced with Reuben. (newborn sleepless nights aside) I know a lot of parents won't agree with this at all, but I let him cry it out. Please don't torch me. I did it with love. I went into him every few minutes and gave him his dummy and told him I loved him and left again. And he kept crying. I had unintentionally spoiled him and now was my chance to start a new routine. This went on for a few hours and I crouched behind my own bedroom door crying and praying and wondering if I was doing the right thing. The second night he only cried a little, the third night he only cried when I said it was bed time, and on the fourth night he walked to bed himself and let me tuck him in. It might not work for everybody, but it worked for Reuben. And I am ecstatic. I also have a double bed and that creek in my neck is finally gone.

-Just because you get clean yourself in the shower doesn't mean your shower is clean.

- TV is really not necessary
I haven't missed it as much as I missed the hoover.
Reuben and I read The Ugly Duckling approx. 678245 times and it's actually an inspiring story. More inspiring than the Early Church History article that I haven't started writing about yet. Do you think I could submit this blog post as my assignment? I haven't missed the TV one bit and Reuben has actually started paying attention when I read to him. I'm also obliged to spend every afternoon at the park so he's too tired to trash the house while I make dinner.

- I want to hang out with my parents.
My friends have been so amazing and supportive as usual. That's their thing. Just being amazing. But I missed my family. (Not the dogs though. I'll never miss the dogs)And I have LOVED having the house for just myself and Reuben. I feel like we are our own little family unit. But I was genuinely so excited to see my mama this morning when she came to visit us and I was devastated at how fast the day went. This week my parents even bought Reuben a new big single bed for our room in Castledawson. Now we both have single beds in the room - it feels like we're bother and sister. (a frequent mistake made by lots of students this week)

Who needs a schoolbag when you've got a kid
Tired of the conversation at halls

I hate football but there's always some other student who doesn't

No parents = stay in the bath as long as we like

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