Monday, 27 February 2012
Don't cry over spilled milk...or raisins... or biscuits - eat them off the floor!
I was thinking about how the second child always gets the short end of the stick somehow (in my case, it is technically the third child that gets the leftovers of emotional hype that the first two have not already taken). I can remember how, as new parents, the Sweetpea and I would literally photograph every instant of our boys lives. First bath? Take a photo! Second bath? Take a photo! First time child holds onto stuffed animal? Take a photo! First time child drops a stuffed animal? Take a photo! This also explains how we used up an entire hard-drive of a computer (and no, not a Commodore 64, a real one) just on the photos we took of the first three months of the boy's time on earth. An unsurprising number of those photos are of the twins either sleeping or eating, however.
Little Miss Snoopy, however, gets in the shot when a number of other prerequisites are fulfilled first. Like, did we remember to bring the camera? And if we did bring it, is there any space on the card? And if there is space on the card, do we have the energy to make the required faces to get her to smile? As a result, we probably have about half of the photos of her in her whole lifetime thus far, as we took in the first three months of the boys'. Enough to bring on a scenic guilt trip right then and there.
Likewise, feeding was different. My life in the days and months after the twins birth seemed to consist of nothing else but feeding them (obviously), and sterilising everything else that wasn't a boob. Bottles, teats, things that fell on the floor, things that hadn't fallen on the floor, but looked as though they could have, hands, floors, you name it. It went into the steriliser (actually, we didn't own a steriliser. A friend of ours' sent along a meal after the twins were born, and it came with a handy little gadget that we thought was a steriliser. It was only after an uncomfortable four months, when they asked for their rice cooker back, that we realised what it was. But before then, we used it every day to sterilise everything). If food fell on the floor while they were learning to eat solids, out it went into the rubbish (again, seemingly obviously). There was no one-second rule in our house. It was either clean, or it was garbage.
But second time around, with Little Miss Snoopy, I was unprepared for the fact that two-year-old toddlers, by their natures, leave things lying around, and you have no control over it. It was not uncommon for me to find things lying on the carpet (well-sucked by then) which I knew that I hadn't given to the boys for at least a week previously. Like toast. Or biscuits. Or even old popcorn or sticky, well-chewed raisins (on one dreadful occasion). And I have a really clean house (normally)! The one-second rule transmuted to the five minute rule, and then to the rule "if it bears a resemblance to food and doesn't actually bite back when you bite it", it's food.
And yet, for all of that, Little Miss Snoopy is one of the healthiest children I know. She never picks up the usual illnesses, has no allergies or asthma's or cradle-caps or anything else that would suggest she has basically picked up other's left-overs and put them in her mouth. Likewise the boys are just as healthy. Hmm, now what? We are left with no rules! Oh well, I am sure there must be someone out there who has some good advice in this instance?