Sunday 23 May 1999
It would be fair to say that neither of us are quite prepared for this child. This is our third go, and I for one am reluctant to put any emotional investment into someone who isn't here yet. We haven't even bought much stuff, as there is a general feeling that we already have everything we need, although we don't remember where we put it. Last week my wife did come back from Ikea with a sort of cage. She has some idea that we're going to keep this one penned up in the kitchen. This seems mad to me, but I've learned not to question her actions at this late stage.
It will be nice to have my wife's brain back in gear, because her absent- mindedness has a certain aggressive quality, which often seems to be directed at me. She loses my cashcard instead of hers. She throws away my post. The other day she ripped a plant I bought out of the ground. She said she mistook it for a weed, but I saw the hole she dug. Yesterday she screamed at me for neglecting to change three lightbulbs in the hall. I said I didn't know they had gone, and she screamed that that was typical of me. I dragged out the step ladder and found all three bulbs to be in perfect working order. Normally I would be angry about this sort of trick, but this time it just gave me the creeps.
Perhaps worst of all, her absent-mindedness is the single aspect of her pregnancy that I have chosen to imitate. Some men get fat out of sympathy. I have become enveloped in fog. I find myself standing with a hammer in one hand and an onion in the other, wondering who I am and how I came to be here. I have got used to making a second daily trip to Sainsbury to pick up everything my wife forgot to get in the morning, but now I too fail to remember the milk, the bread or the nappies. "Well what DID you get?" yells my wife. "Cassette tapes," I say. "Cassette tapes and yeast." You know those annoying people who stand in the middle of the dairy aisle staring into space, with the trolley side-on so no one can get by? That's me. Some days I'm there all afternoon.
In response to the coming baby and his parents' new habit of wandering around wearing one shoe apiece, our eldest son whatsisname has gone weird. I think he feels neglected. I want to tell him that everything will be all right, but I've forgotten which room is his. Meanwhile, there is nothing for me to do but pull myself together and get on with my work.
Life & Style blogs
The mother who never gave up on her child abused by the Oxford child sex ring
Britain scrapes into top 25 countries in the world to be a mother in Save the Children report
What do the emoji on Snapchat mean?
The 12 most sexually satisfied countries in the world revealed
Uploading pictures to find out how old you are gives Microsoft the right to post them wherever they want
In defence of liberal democracy
Over 50,000 families shipped out of London boroughs in the past three years due to welfare cuts and soaring rents
EU asylum policy is 'a direct threat to our civilisation', says Nigel Farage
The Rothschild Libel: Why has it taken 200 years for an anti-Semitic slur that emerged from the Battle of Waterloo to be dismissed?
General Election 2015: UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power, Labour warns
General election live: SNP suspends two members for disrupting Labour rally
- 2 Italian police 'reveal' what Jesus looked like as a young boy
- 3 General Election 2015: 14-year-old boy asks Nick Clegg – 'can you kill Katie Hopkins?'
- 4 University student in court for allegedly covering housemates' food in window cleaner and spit
- 5 Ryan Gosling posts tribute to 'Ryan Gosling Won't Eat His Cereal' creator Ryan McHenry
£13676.46 - £16411.61 per annum + OTE: SThree: SThree Trainee Recruitment Cons...
£18000 - £22000 per annum + training: Ashdown Group: Business and Marketing Gr...
£20000 - £25000 per annum + Commission: SThree: Are you great at building rela...
£20000 - £22000 per annum + excellent benefits: Ashdown Group: Application Sup...