I cried in a pie shop

Today was not a good day.

The day started at 2.30am. It’s never a good idea to start your day at 2.30am.

The littliest one screamed in my ear. I was in a deep sleep. I was dreaming about Idris Elba. I did not want the things that were happening in that dream to end.

I put the baby on my boob and succumbed to the pain. It’s always painful on that side. Sometimes I think my right breast is possessed. That’s probably a sign that I’m not getting enough sleep.

Mercifully it is a quick feed. I can’t be bothered putting the baby back in his cot. He somehow wasn’t even in his cot anyway so I figure it’s ok for him to keep snuggling into me. I haven’t seen my husband in many, many years. I assume he is in the spare room bed with our toddler.

I groggily stumble into the toilet and see a snake. It is huge. I lunge for the towel rail because I need to stop myself falling backward. I break the towel rail.

The snake is a towel. We do not have snakes in New Zealand.

The baby wakes up.

I resettle the baby. My heart is racing. I’ll check Facebook to calm myself. The first photo in my feed is a fucking snake eating a fucking croc.

My breast hurts so much I can’t sleep anyway. So I just lay there imagining snakes. I try to turn them into fun snakes wearing top hats and getting upset because they don’t have arms and their top hats keep falling down. It doesn’t work.

Panadol doesn’t take my boob pain away.

It’s now 5am. I write a blog post about how much I hate breast feeding.

The baby wakes up. I feed the baby. It’s now 6am. I close my eyes.

At 7am my oldest comes in crying. He won’t tell me what’s wrong. My husband is looking for his work pants. He turns the shower on. I turn on Playschool. The baby cries again. It must be a growth spurt.

We are all late. Husband says he has to go. He’s sorry but he needs to get to this job. He cannot take our first born to crèche because our first born isn’t dressed because he’s watching Playschool. I force myself into the shower. The oldest jabs my stomach. “BABY INERE MAMA BABY INERE PUKU”. I scowl at him. He laughs. “Whasdat mama?” he says pointing to my stretch marks. The baby begins to cry.

I put on a bra and immediately leak through it. I get another bra. I hear the bus. I am not on the bus. I am looking for underwear.

The oldest boy has smeared my moisturiser all over the mirror in his room. I ignore it. I make a coffee and hear the bus. I am not on it.

My oldest son begins his crèche half day at 8.30am. It’s 9.30am. I cannot find the baby carrier.

I cannot find my oldest son. I look out the window and see our gate is closed so I just sit down and feed the baby. I read the blog post I wrote about breast feeding. It’s shit. I look for my oldest. He is filling a bucket with dirt and he has a hose in the bucket. He is filthy. I change him. The baby cries. I change my wet bra. We finally leave.

It’s 10.30am. I walk out just in time to see the bus leave without me on it. I begin to walk to crèche. It is so windy that I can barely hear my oldest screaming at me to STOP THE WIND MAMA. It’s quite pleasant.

The baby cries. Could it be teeth?

I see another bus. I tear across the road waving one hand while trying to steer the buggy with the other. The baby is laughing as he is bounced around in the carrier. My oldest yells “FASTER MAMA! FASTER!” from the buggy. The bus driver smiles at me and gets out of the bus to help me. “Lovely kids you’ve got there,” he says. Eddie says “HI I’M EDDIE!”

I struggle to get the buggy breaks on. A young girl offers me her seat. I wave her away. She coos at my baby. “What a cutie you are!” she says to him. He beams. Eddie says “HI I’M EDDIE!”

The bus driver gets up to help me off the bus. Before he can an elderly woman leaps up and helps me with the nappy bag which has fallen out of the buggy and spilled shit everywhere.

The bus driver, the nanna, and the young girl wave and smile at me from the window as the bus leaves.

Baby actually spills shit all over me. I walk into the crèche and Eddie leaps out of the buggy. “HI! I’M EDDIE” he yells. His kaiako cheerily greet me. They help me with my bags. They pull up a chair for my boy. They pass me a glass of water. They pull out his lunchbox. I realise it’s almost lunchtime. I say I need to go and they say “no worries! It’s all good.” I rush out to the sounds of my son crying. I bite back tears as my other son begins to cry. I watch the bus go past without me on it.

His kaiako rings me on my cell phone “I just thought you should know he stopped crying straight away. He’s playing in the sandpit. Everything is OK”.

I walk home. It takes an hour and 15 minutes. I am sweaty and covered in baby poo. I get home and put the baby in the sink. I put the carrier in the washing machine. After feeding the baby I realise I need to leave again to pick up the toddler. My husband comes home. He says he needed to get one of his tools. He drives me to crèche.

I stand at the door at crèche watching my son who hasn’t seen me yet. He is pretending to be a shark. He is screaming with laughter with the other children and their kaiako. He is covered in sand. He tells me he had SO MUCH FUN. I begin packing up his gear. The other mums smile kindly at me. “Full on day aye?”

I grimace awkwardly at them.

The baby cries. I have squeezed him into a sling and he hates it. My sister rings and I accidentally hang up on her. My oldest screams at me to stop the wind. I miss the bus. My sister calls again. I complain at her. I don’t even ask how she is. She asks for the boys sizes so she can buy some clothes for them.

I remember I have a guest coming at 4pm. It’s 3pm. The next bus is in half an hour. I go to the pie shop. I order a coffee. The lady offers to toast me a sandwich and gives me a warm smile. “It’s OK,” she says.

I think I didn’t thank my sister on the phone. Did I thank the bus driver? That girl? The nana? My husband? The kaiako? The other mums? Every person who spoke to me today has treated me kindly.

My baby snores softly on my chest.  My toddler sleeps in his buggy – exhausted from his exciting day. My husband calls.

“See you soon hon. What a shitter of a day aye?”

I nod. Hang up. And start to cry

I cried in a pie shop. Because I’m thankful to everyone who is nice to mums who always miss buses.



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30 Comments on “I cried in a pie shop

  1. This is amazing, and no one cares if you didn’t thank them. You’re an amazing mother. x

  2. I’m so sorry to laugh at your terrible day! In fact I went one step further and read it out to my husband! I’m 19 weeks pregnant with our first child and I’m trying to prepare him for what the reality of our life will be (forewarned is forearmed etc!) but I still don’t think he believes me so only time will teach him!

    • Congrats! Nothing will ever prepare you – it’s the best and sometimes the worst 😉

    • Unfortunately we all think we know it all before the little ones show up. We find out pretty quickly that we had no idea… sigh

  3. It will get better! And there will come a time when you can laugh at the crying times. 39 years ago I sat crying in the changing room of a posh lingerie shop while the lovely ladies found me a bra and boob shields while I fed a screaming new born whose butt had exploded all over the pram and bedding. When I left wearing the new clean bra, a new clean blouse and the pram cleaned and a borrowed knee rug while everything was bundled into a brand named bag so it looked as if I had bough a heap of gorgeousness instead of carrying a bag of shitty and milky gear the owner of the shop said…just drop in next time and pay something off the clothes, they will be on sale next week so no hurry… IMAGINE that happening today! But now it is more amusing than sad and kindness is universal… I’m so glad you had kind people in your crappy day.

    • That’s a lovely story. I don’t think people realise how much they give when they’re kind.

  4. It’s definitely rough being at the coal face of parenting when the kids are tiny and chronic sleep-deprivation magnifies all the thoughts and feelings and experiences. I cried many tears in the shower. And sometimes I cried in the shower while expressing a substance akin to cottage cheese out of my breast because I had a blocked milk duct which makes me wonder if that is why you are finding breastfeeding on one side painful.

  5. From a total stranger… Big hugs and arohanui. You sound like you’re being an amazing mum, and an amazing wife, and a fantastic person in general. Things will keep changing. This time of these problems will soon pass. Be as kind to yourself as you can be. 🙂

  6. Ah, you poor thing! Every mum has those days (though knowing that doesn’t seem to help at all, does it?). You are a great mum. You obviously put your kiddies first, but don’t forget to put yourself first sometimes too xx

  7. I’m crying at my computer screen because you missed the bus and because I don’t have a pie. My son has an ear infection and I have the flu, today has been a shitter for me too but this has made me feel better, except the not having a pie bit. No matter how pooty things are there’s usually someone who makes it better, even if just a little. Reading this has done that for me tonight. Thank-you 🙂

  8. I cried today because my grumpy teething 15 month old has quit day naps for the last fortnight.
    Naps aren’t for her they are for her Mummy. I want a hot coffee or pee alone without someone yelling Mummy Mummy Mummy POO so loud that our neighbours can hear her.

  9. Completely understanding your pain. Similar stuff going on here, awake at 3am and never really went back to sleep. If it wasn’t the baby it was the toddler. Get up and realise our boiler has broken again so spent the day rushing to preschool to get back to wait for the plumber who still hasn’t appeared and I’m wondering if I can do the preschool pick up or if I’ll have to ask a grandparent, again. They must be fed up of me. I just keep holding on to the fact that it eventually got easier with the toddler. It’s got to get easier with the second one, hasn’t it?

    • And of course I was feeding when the plumber finally arrived at 4pm. Nothing beats having to complain about his previous ‘repair’ when you’ve got a child attached to your boob!

  10. I love your blogs. They make me smile and nod and bring fresh horror at the reality of us doing this all again in 9 weeks time! Having a demanding, high-maintenance daughter already is hard enough, how the hell am I going to manage when our son arrives? I have the fear, big time.
    Today has been a whiny day. Lots of “I want”, “I don’t want” and “no”. It’s wearing me down. I’ve given in to McDonald’s and cookies to resort to bribery for good behaviour- there goes my Mother of the Year award….
    I’m tired from being up late changing a wet bed and being up early as 5:30 is the new 6:30 it seems. The soon-to-be-arriving baby is trying to push through the top of my belly like a scene out of Alien and I am finding it almost impossible to walk/stand/sit/lie comfortably.

    I have dragged my first born round the shops today in a vain attempt to buy a new tshirt to fit my ever-expanding figure, only to be told maternity stuff is only sold online now. Great. Rushed to gym tots to find it’s closed for the Easter holidays. Why didn’t I check the calendar? Cue mltdown (her, not me) then trip to the park. Extracting a 3yr old from a park is almost impossible. Cue another meltdown.

    Back home now to nurse maid my sick husband, cook dinner and tidy the inexplicable mess that’s been created in the mere 15 mins we’ve been back.

    Roll on bedtime.

  11. Keep going mama! You are doing an amazing job. You’re a really good writer and I teach writing so I should know! All love to you and yours from London. Keep keeping on. xx

  12. I cried in the chemist aftrr repeated sleepless nights with a teething 3 1/2 month old. The ladies at Mahora chemist in Hastings were so kind and helpful it gave me faith that my little man is healthy and I am stumbling through this motherhood gig okay.
    I love reading your blog, it reminds me that all mothers go through this And it will pass before I know it. Hugs from this mama to you 🙂

  13. Totally feel your pain. Getting buses sucks!! I once burst into tears at the bus stop because I couldn’t collapse my buggy and the bus drove off without me and my baby. A lady came up (another mum!) and was so nice to me it made me cry even more. Some days are so so hard.

    Please keep on writing your blogs. I love to read them because they are so honest and totally relatable.

    Hope your day is easier tomorrow. X

  14. Awww! I love how you turn things into humorous stories, but I know at the time they must be incredibly frustrating and trying. I’m due to have two just 14 months apart, so I’m SURE I will have days where I just want to sit down and cry (actually, I do that now lol, what am I talking about?). Sometimes someone just being nice to you is enough to make you cry. Honestly, if someone is having a bad day (especially with babies) and they forget to thank me or ask how my own day was, I don’t give a shit that they don’t … I know they have enough going on and they are doing an incredibly selfless job … the people who are nice to you didn’t do it to get thanks, I’m sure they know thanks is implied 😉

  15. I have a 3.5 year old and a 12 week old and I don’t drive, and my god, I could have written this post. When I’m in the middle of the struggle of leaving the house and chasing down the bus to playcentre I often feel like I’m totally alone in this struggle. Thank you for showing me that I’m not. Hugs from one bus missing mum to another 🙂

  16. There is nothing easy about kids. They’re just damned hard work and they make the simplest tasks so complicated. Thanks goodness for a few kind people to bring a little light to a dark day.

  17. You’ve got me in tears smiling as I can so relate. It’s so awesome when kind people help us mums out. You’ll do the same for another mum do doubt. And you’ll laugh when your kids have kids and tell of similar tales too xx

  18. Oh I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry…bit of both? Keep going, you are doing an amazing job x

  19. Oh god I feel you. I have tears in my eyes myself from reading this and knowing what those days feel like. I wrote one of them down once like this too… because honestly sometimes even straight away after they happen it’s hard to remember how the F that got/was so hard. But it is and it was. Mine are 2 and (almost 4) now and today I had this total epiphany… it was a light into the window of the time period/kid years to come. It was the first time I ever saw it. It was filled with fun play dates and sleepovers, and you know tents in the yard– fun summer stuff like that– and it was such a revelation– just the notion that my kids won’t be toddlers anymore one day. The list of things I’ll be happy to have gone tantrums/butt wiping/blah blah blah is long right now. Someday I probably won’t even remember what was on it. May it be so. Amen.

  20. Hi Emily, just wanted to say your post “I cried in a pie shop” made me cry because someone understands. Thank you, and I hope the next day was a little better. xox

  21. This could be my day any day this week. The feelings rather than the actual exactness. The days are filled with bits of joy and are also so long. And so hard.