The past few days have been difficult and tiring.
Honestly, I am surprised that nobody with a new Baby has ever noticed this before. Truly, I am a master of acute and original observation.
“You look shattered,” I tell the LTLP. “Why don’t I take the Baby out for a bit?”
It is true. The LTLP’s head is lolling about with tiredness; her shoulders slump with the weight of constant responsibility and physical effort. Even though I am not feeling great myself, the least that I can do is to ease her burdon for a short while.
“While I’m gone, you can wash up the bottles and make more milks and sort out the stuff that he has been sick on and wash down the changing mat and do a bit of general tidying up, if you like,” I add. “In the meantime, I will take on the job of looking after the Baby.”
I go to the Village Pub.
The Baby has not been to the Village Pub before. It is difficult to tell what he thinks, as his face (when awake) carries a permanent expression of startled alarm and dismay. It is an expression that you only ever see on babies. We walk through the door into the bar.
The Village Pub is very busy. I am in luck. As new babies are basically exactly like those ultraviolet lamp-trap things that they hang in the corner of bakeries to lure in flies and insects, but for middle-aged women, I am soon divested of my load. I am able to sit at the bar and quietly drink cider whilst the Baby is passed around for inspection.
“Here is your bar bill. I’m afraid we are closing your account,” says the Well-Spoken Barman.
My face adopts an expression of startled alarm and dismay. But it transpires that this is only because they are moving to a new till system. I will get a new bar tab afterwards, although there is some worrying talk of itemisation.
The Baby is returned to me an hour or so later. I finish my pint and wish everybody well, as he is now screaming his head off.
Returning home, I find the milks made up and the kitchen tidied. Parenting is about teamwork; we have this sorted between us.