6 mad skillz you develop as a parent

6 mad skillz you develop as a parent

superheromugYears ago, when I lived in London, I prided myself on my ability to zip through the thousands of Saturday shoppers clogging up Oxford Street. I could negotiate moving crowds like nobody’s business – because challenging environments force you to adapt and evolve. Take parenthood: you’ll never evolve quite so fast as you will after having a kid. These days I am quite the parenting superhero. Behold, my superpowers…

1. Texting under a pillow. No idea how I manage to do this without more typos, but it’s a skill borne out of survival and a desperate need to connect with the outside world. (Essential after your third day without leaving the house because it’s raining and you can’t get My Pet And Me’s theme tune out of your head.) I don’t dare to text in full view of Charlie, because that’s the end of mummy being allowed to use her own phone until he a) loses interest or b) falls asleep. For the record, a) never happens. I suspect my child may be a genius because at 10 months he’s in there teaching himself shit. Last time he had my phone, he taught himself how to delete apps and I came back to find he had binned Instagram, LinkedIn and Twitter. He’s not very discerning.

2. One-handed cooking. After ten months of being a mama, I can cook a roast chicken with a kid on my hip. Or anything you want to throw at me. And once you’ve mastered cooking, retrieving things from a hot oven one-handed and opening the dishwasher and its sliding trays with your foot, you’ll find yourself being able to do everything one-handed with a baby on your hip, like putting multiple loads of washing on, mopping the floor, retrieving a dummy from under the fridge, washing it and stuffing it back in the baby’s mouth. You think I’m joking. I’m at the osteopath every second week, people.

3. Making a ‘meal’ out of anything. Granted, it’s not a meal you might sit down to eat yourself, but edamame beans, some scrambled egg and a piece of toast with hummus looks like it kinda ticks all the nutritional boxes. Of course, your baby will eat none of it, but at least you can put him or her to bed knowing you tried.

Modern Dad Pages4. Working most productively at 11pm. I don’t know when my work day started at 11pm. Oh yeah, when I went back as a new mother. Which brings me to…

5. The ability to cram a lot into no time at all. Like a whole day’s work into 2-3 hours (amazing what you can do when you work non-stop without Twitter breaks). Or using a mere ten minutes while the baby’s catnapping to throw dinner together, put a load of washing on and blitz the house so it looks vaguely presentable.

Friday Frolics6. Avoiding bubba-related injuries. Bubbas may be cute 95 percent of the time, but the other 5 percent they can inflict real pain if you’re in the wrong place at the wrong time. Like if they’re exploring your face with their fingers and stick a sharp fingernail in your eye. Or give you an accidental head butt to the mouth which leaves you seeing stars and nursing a bleeding lip. And don’t get me started on using your hair like a vine a monkey would swing on in the jungle. Charlie’s also going through a stage of slapping things at moments of hilarity or excitement, which could be the table, a book, an unsuspecting soft toy or my head. I can now deflect slaps like Neo in the Matrix, and I’m also super speedy in moving the discarded books, blocks and screechy battery-operated kids’ toys with my feet while beating back a path to the fridge. (We’re working on the head butting and hair pulling thing.)

What’s your parenting super power?

Journalist. New mama. Mr Chick's missus. Blogger at The Mama Files, Reality Chick, Letter To My Ex and Rachel's List. Author of sex advice book, Get Lucky. Writer for Good Health, CLEO, Woman's Day, Inside Out, NineMSN and many more. Current fantasy: adding a rooftop hot-tub to the house.

31 Comments

  1. Louise Rodgers 2 years ago

    Haaaaaaaa! Yes some serious skills there!! I hear you completely!! #wineandboobs

    • Author
      Rachel 2 years ago

      Thanks Louise, glad it hit the spot with you. I’m only new at this caper though, I am amassing new superhero skills all the TIME! 🙂

  2. Talya 2 years ago

    It’s amazing the skills and super powers we develop as parents. Mine has to be super human reflexes. I can not tell you how many times I have caught by 2 year old before she almost smashed her head open on something. The mind boggles eh? Thanks for linking up to #wineandboobs

    • Author
      Rachel 2 years ago

      Yes, the reflexes! You end up having eyes in the back of your head when your once placid, sit anywhere bubba is suddenly on the move. No more just reading your book, huh?
      Thanks for co-hosting, always fun linking up with you guys 🙂

  3. Between the bites, pinches, scratches, hairpulls and being treated like a climbing frame I am black and blue. Don’t remember reading about that it ‘What to Expect’.

    #wine and boobs

    • Author
      Rachel 2 years ago

      I think we should email them demanding they add a new chapter 🙂

  4. Kelly 2 years ago

    Do you know what?? Even when the leave the baby stage, you still have to do all these superpowers. I still do anyway. Love the texting under a pillow! I text, eat and read under mine too. It’s my best friend, because it hides the sacred stuff from my kid 🙂 #wineandboobs

    • Author
      Rachel 2 years ago

      You eat under your pillow? Respect, woman. That deserves a category all of its own 😀

      I have a friend who calls her toddler the ‘seagull’ because she can never eat anything without her little girl sidling up and snatching half of it… I’m wondering if Reese is like that too! xo

  5. Kelly 2 years ago

    Yes, I eat under my pillow. It usually is chocolate or a biscuit. I sneakily have one eye on Reeve, whilst taking a sneaky bite and have the pillow hiding my mouth and food. I also stop chewing when he looks at me. Are you getting a mental image? Definitely would agree with your friend and the word ‘Seagull’. My kid would put a real seagull to shame. xo

    • Author
      Rachel 2 years ago

      Haha you are a classic.

  6. Kirsten Toyne 2 years ago

    My super power as I have older kids is to sense mischief whilst it is happening. #wineandboobs

    • Author
      Rachel 2 years ago

      It’s when they go all quiet, isn’t it Kirsten? 🙂 Cheeky monkeys.

  7. Wow you have some major skills there lovely! 😉

    I think I’m amazing because I can keep her on my hip whilst I tackle the perfect prep machine, nevermind cooking and doing the housework! She will NOT keep still in my arms, she keeps diving forwards to reach for things all of the time so I daren’t stretch it too far!

    Hopefully I’ll keep on adapting and evolving and I’ll be able to give you a run for your money in a few months time eh? 🙂

    #wineandboobs

    XX

    • Author
      Rachel 2 years ago

      Haha, for sure!

      Charlie’s already reaching for things (and almost getting them) so not sure how much longer the cooking thing can continue, to be honest, but when I put him down he just attaches to my leg like a koala. I could drag him around the kitchen attached to my leg, but it’s not very efficient 😀

      XO

  8. Ruth Meaney 2 years ago

    Oh I hear you! I must say I am a two handed cook thanks to the super power that is baby wearing, seriously a life saver! Plus they tend to eat veggies while they’re on your back (but not in the high chair…amazing). My most productive time is 9pm-11;30pm. You’d think sleep would trump doing stuff. But I think trying to change a poo filled nappy on an over tired two year old has to be the skill I am most proud of. No poo on me, no poo on her. Winner.

    • Author
      Rachel 2 years ago

      Ha, love it Ruth! I’ve heard the nappy changing gets worse. Currently changing Charlie is like changing an octapus that has a lot of things to do. I’m not relishing it when he gets bigger and stronger. What does work is singing really fast. That keeps him there long enough for me to get the nappy on!

      I think I do baby weaning as well – I just put food on his tray and let him pick and choose! Love your blog by the way. I need some new ideas BADLY!! 🙂

  9. We’re currently going through a biting phase. Joy :/ Thanks for linking up to #FridayFrolics.

    • Author
      Rachel 2 years ago

      Oh no… I feel for you! Maybe you can write a post on solutions when you get to the other side!? I know I for one would be reading with great interest 🙂 xo

  10. This is a great blog post! 🙂 Not sure I’ve quite mastered all of those skills yet – I was actually kicked in the nose this morning. The nose!!! It hurt. I said bad words.
    My superpower is that I am a twin mum. Boom! Nuff said. #Fridayfrolics

    • Author
      Rachel 2 years ago

      Instant superhero status Lucinda. Seriously, respect. I struggle with one, you are doing brilliantly I’m sure!
      And the nose – OUCH. No one could blame you for the bad words… 🙂

  11. I’m beginning to get pretty good at mind reading and my ninja toy avoidance skills are pretty impressive now

    • Author
      Rachel 2 years ago

      I just clubbed my foot on a blue block that I missed during the night-time tidy up. My superhero powers aren’t faultless it seems 🙂

  12. Mama Zen 2 years ago

    This is great! My superhero power is definitely the ability to shout at both my children at the same time? Not exactly comic book worthy, or perhaps its eating entire chocolate bar whilst crouching behind my buggy that I am pushing (so that my children don’t see) Or (Getting a bit carried away now) managing to check twitter whilst stopping my two year old from jumping off the sofa and putting my my three year old on the naughty step at the same time !! This is ALL going on my CV.

    • Author
      Rachel 2 years ago

      Hahaha LOVE IT, yes, there should be a compulsory superhero power section on every CV. Would make for interesting reading 🙂
      I’m getting a mental image of you crouched behind the buggy stuffing chocolate in your mouth. The things we do so as not to share food with our children, eh? Wait, that sounded bad.

  13. Haha, love this! I’m still not quite there with the superhuman productivity. Procrastination is still my friend (read: enemy).

    #FridayFrolics x

    • Author
      Rachel 2 years ago

      I want to say that my procrastination issues completely ended once I had Charlie, but I AM sitting here answering comments and flicking back to Twitter when I should be working, so… maybe not 🙂

  14. Kate 2 years ago

    Fantastic – and all so true! I reckon I’ve pretty much nailed doing everything one-hanedly since my kids came along! Great post #fridayfrolics

    • Author
      Rachel 2 years ago

      Thanks Kate. I may have to do a follow-up – every day there are more one-handed skills to master when you’ve got a kid walking around causing mischief! 🙂

  15. I love this post!

    When I had one child, I might have been able to find some super powers…. but being tag teamed has left me completely without… I’m lucky to get through a day alive!

    Mister L has an uncanny ability to find a way to hurt me, no matter how hard I try (and I think he gets it from me, oops).

    Thanks for linking up with #wineandboobs
    @twentyfirstmama

    • Author

      Aww thanks Lora! Yeah, I reckon two kids would probably gang up on you and that would be that 🙂 Here’s hoping you have a quiet corner to escape to with a biscuit and a cuppa at least once a day! (Yup, I’m joking…)

  16. Kylie Travers 2 years ago

    Great skills to develop 😉 My mum was amazing at making not only means, but pretty much anything we needed out of nothing.

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