The Moody Mum With a Pushchair

The Moody Mum With a Pushchair

Hello! It’s me! The Moody Mum With a Pushchair! I know. I come across as really miserable and so bloody entitled as I plough down the pavement with my stern face on. But I’m nice, honestly. I’ve just got other things on my mind…

In the early days I was just so busy watching my baby, making sure he was breathing, not about to puke up, or start screaming and do you know what? I wasn’t even pushing the pushchair to go somewhere, it was the only way he would sleep. So I was a bit too frazzled and fed up and preoccupied to nod politely to strangers on the pavement. Or to move out of the way for them.

Then I got to the grindingly tired stage, where after about six months of broken nights you are so tired you can’t really see . So I wasn’t being rude when I bumped the back of your shoe with the pushchair – I just didn’t notice you in my swirling, light-headed daze.

After that came the angry about dog shit stage. This usually kicks in around Autumn, when the pram-pushers’ nemesis – AKA careless dog owners – start letting their dogs curl one out on the path in amongst the leaves and just leave it there. So I’m afraid all of my attention was firmly on the concrete slabs making sure I didn’t cover the wheels in poo. Because frankly, there’s nothing worse than cleaning dog shit off your pushchair wheels while your baby screams for a feed and you can’t touch them because dog poo is probably the last thing on earth that should be on your baby’s head.

So yes, as I’ve mentioned, I’m that Moody Mum With a Pushchair. But I’m not really moody, just…preoccupied.

Anyway, after the angry about dog shit stage came the “Oh God I’m pregnant again and I’ve got a toddler and I’m dying from exhaustion stage”.  So that was fun. But once again, I’m afraid I may not have moved out of the way, or chirped ‘good morning’ – in fact I probably didn’t notice you at all. I was just really, really tired.

Then we were into the pushing a newborn and trying to keep a feral toddler from hurling himself into the road stage. That really did make me look moody. Have I mentioned that I’m nice really? But Jesus, that stage lasted a LONG time.

So it’s taken a little while – five and a half years, to be precise – but I think I’m about ready to let my true personality shine through as I push my stroller down the street. The eldest trots delightfully by my side, the youngest (currently at the feral stage) is restrained (the joy!). I’m even getting a little sleep these days, which is quite the treat after half a decade of delirium! I notice and acknowledge strangers, I may even move out of the way – although that is quite a feat when you’re pushing a three year old in a pushchair with one hand. There’s more good news – if you see me marching down the pavement towards you, I am 80% less likely to chip your ankle bone than I was five years ago.

I also make an extra special effort to give a knowing look and a wry smile to other grim-faced mums, slumped over the pushchair handles as their newborn wails and they career down the pavement leaving confused pedestrians and small dogs in their wake. I’m not sure they even notice me, I probably just look like some loon, leering at them in their peripheral vision, taunting them with my cheeriness and springy stride.

But do you know what, New Moody Mum With a Pushchair? Soon my pushing days will be done and then life could get really tough, as I graduate to being the Harrassed Mum With Two Kids on Scooters.

Wish me luck…

Alison McGarragh-Murphy

Alison McGarragh-Murphy writes and edits stuff for The Motherload, and is also a radio producer and broadcast journalist, a mum of two and a wife of one. Since becoming a mother she has (mostly) gladly swapped a busy social life of gigs, pubs, art galleries and museums for dancing in the kitchen, drinking on the sofa, finger painting and hanging out at the park. She talks incessantly about not having slept for five years. Follow Alison on Twitter @BertaFanta and on Facebook @ammblogs

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