My Bundle Of Joy: Part Sixteen

This is the sixteenth part of a fiction serial, in 770 words.

For most of the night, I had stayed awake. Every time I felt my eyes closing, I jumped, trying to wake myself up. The baby monitor was making no noise, and there had been no crying. Olly was dead to the world, but I didn’t need the vibrating pad under my pillow to wake me up.

I went into Leah’s room more times than I can remember now. If she was awake, I sat in the nursing chair and fed her. If she was asleep, I sat staring at her, wondering if she was alright.

When Olly got up to get ready for work, I had just gone to sleep. But I dragged myself up and went to check on Leah. Olly could have probably got away with taking the day off, but they had been very understanding, and he didn’t want to take advantage. He made me a coffee and brought it up to me, tactfully not asking me if I was going to be alright on my own that day.

Not that I had much chance to be alone. Mum and dad turned up just after nine, with my brother in tow. They had made him take the day off to see his niece, and he grinned as I opened the door. “Where is she then?” Mum was carrying two huge balloons, one with ‘Baby Leah’ printed on it, and the other in the shape of a pink unicorn. Dad handed me a bouquet of pink roses, and they both brushed past me in their eagerness to see their granddaughter.

My brother looked over their shoulders, and one glance was enough. He sat on the sofa and said “Tea and toast would be nice, sis”. I told him he knew where the kitchen was.

Mum was already fixating on the shape of Leah’s head, and she was multi-tasking as she told dad to find a vase for the flowers in the same breath. I kept my temper as I watched mum examining my baby as if she was a pedigree piglet she was thinking of buying.

“Green eyes. That must come from Olly’s family. Nobody on our side ever had green eyes.
Does that mean she will have ginger hair? I hope not.
Mind you, she hasn’t got much hair to speak of at the moment anyway.
Does she feed alright?
Did she keep you awake all night? You look terrible.
Why don’t you get some sleep while we are here? I will look after her.
How long before her head looks normal?”.

Her words were tumbling out like the sound of a machine gun, leaving no pause for me to answer. I just sat on the sofa and let her get on with it. Then the smoke alarm went off, because Ronnie had burned the toast. Dad put his arm around me as Ronnie flapped a tea-towel at the ceiling.

At least my dad understood.

It got to almost one in the afternoon, and they showed no sign of leaving. I decided to take executive action, and told them I was tired, so could they go and let me rest. Mum looked very miffed, and pushed her lips together in an expression I knew all too well. But Ronnie was pleased, and took my words to mean he could leave immediately. He was on his feet in seconds, reaching for the car keys.

They managed to drag out the departure for another twenty minutes, Ronnie standing by the front door jiggling the keys as mum made her last checks and asked her last questions. I took Leah up to her room and fed her, stretching out in the new nursing chair, cuddling her close. I hated appearing to be unkind to my family, but if I didn’t get some rest, I would be good for nothing.

I should have known I would go to sleep, and of course I did. It must have been some kind of instinct that stopped me dropping Leah, because when I heard Olly close the front door I was still holding her tight. He had got off early, but I had still been asleep for almost three hours. I thought I should feed Leah again, and Olly sat on the floor of the room watching me, listening to my story of the family visit. He asked if it was alright to call his sister now, and she would be busting to hear the news. I had forgotten about her, and felt guilty that it was all about me, and my family.

I could her her screams of pleasure as Olly told her the news.

29 thoughts on “My Bundle Of Joy: Part Sixteen

  1. Yup, you’re pretty accurate about the baby thing Pete. Just remember Mum feels sore for several days after a birth. Strange that you should name the baby Leah the herioine in my psycho series, and quite without thinking I’ve just named a character in the same series Ollie! Psycho??

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  2. I was blessed with great inlaws and my mother was a godsend she monitored my visitors for the first 2 weeks but boy was I grateful she timed everyone in and out..bless her…Another realistic episode, Pete…Well done ๐Ÿ™‚ x

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  3. (1) “Every time I felt my eyes closing, I jumped, trying to wake myself up.” May I suggest propping up the eyelids with toothpicks?
    (2) Since Olly’s manhood was now dead to the world, Angela perked herself up with the vibrator she kept under her pillow.
    (3) Mum and dad turned up just after nine, with Ronnie in tow. Angela figured her brother had been kicked out of bed. Not so much because he hadn’t eaten breakfast, but because he was still wearing his Ronald McDonald pajamas.
    (4a) Mum claimed Leah would one day be a dancer. That’s why she gave Angela a gift certificate for pink Leah-tards.
    (4b) Mum was already fixating on the shape of Leahโ€™s head. “Do you have any latex? I’d like to make a mask of Leah’s head to slip over my garden gnome.”
    (4c) After Mum had examined Leah, she said, “Oh, that reminds me! We’re having pork roast tonight!”
    (5) Green eyes are a genetic mutation. As it turns out, Leah’s conehead will actually grow taller in time so as to accommodate higher intellectual functions. She will eventually enroll in Xavier’s School for Gifted Youngsters, where she will call herself CryBaby because of her ability to make the minds of hardened criminals return to their infant state.
    (6) Leah started out as Baby Spice. After she grew red hair, she became Ginger Spice. Because of her conehead that continued to grow, the kids at school called her Scary Spice. As an adult, she became famous as a juggler of ringsโ€”she could use her conehead to catch them. She even performed at the Olympics opening ceremony by juggling its iconic five rings, which resulted in the media dubbing her Sporty Spice. Leah’s talent made her a wealthy woman, which earned her the title of Posh Spice.
    (7) Machine Gun Mum became a singer, rapper, songwriter, and actress. Upon winning the MTV Europe Music Award, she shouted, “Thank you, baby!” It was later disclosed that she was not referring to her husband.

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  4. Green eyes? Most newborns have navy blue eyes or slate grey, the real colour doesn’t appear for several months, changing many times. Other than that you are doing well writing this from a female perspective.

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    1. Yes, I included the green eyes for the reason that nobody in the family has them. I know it was a bit early, but I have to move things on a bit, or I would be at 100 episodes in every serial. ๐Ÿ™‚
      (Out of interest, my mum told me I was born with blue eyes, and that didn’t change.)
      Thanks, Jude.
      Best wishes, Pete. x


  5. I told all mine to stay away and I would call if I needed them. I was backed up by the visiting midwife who insisted I stay in bed until lunchtime and feed my son when he needed it, giving the other half instructions to bring me breakfast in bed until it was time for him to return to work lol My little lad took quite a toll on me and I was in hospital for 7 days and signed myself out, even though they wanted me to stay in another couple of nights. The woman beside me had twins and neither of us got any sleep, I know how I felt so Iโ€™m sure she felt 10 times worse.. I remember that tiredness well along with the worry of being a new mum and a baby that didnโ€™t really cry when we left hospital. Great writing Pete.

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