Belling The Cat

A baby adds to your life by leaps and bounds. Objects you have never seen before, activities you never thought you would do without an “Ew” and emotions you thought only Karan Johar capable of. As the baby grows up, more gets added to the potpourri of nouns, verbs and other kinds I speak of.

Belling The Cat - Parents Bedroom Privacy - Intimacy After Having A Baby

But something gets subtracted too as soon as a baby takes his rightful place to sleep between you and your beau. I think you know what I mean. And yes, I am entering your bed room right this minute, as I tell you about mine.

Roll all extra carpets and put them away. Forget how comfortable and bouncy the couch in the living room was to accommodate two together.  And if once you took Nike’s ‘Just Do It’ to heart and got it tattooed somewhere on your being it’s time to rub it off – especially the nonchalant ‘Just’. Let the ‘Do it’ remain as a reminder, an alarm clock of sorts which will ring with glee-n-hurry the moment it sees a moment away from the baby’s eyes, or a child’s curiosity.

Belling The Cat

Stage 1 – Gaga-googoo, no do-do

When babies come to occupy pride of place there is just no time, place, space, energy to “be a couple together” (I’ll keep it clean). The intention of doing it will never cease to exist, but all else will conspire to keep you feeling like a priest, or a nun. And no, that cannot be satisfying to the well-being, especially when means of recreation have anyway been reduced to seeing the rattle go rattle-rattle or the bouncy ball make squeaky sounds (I’m trying, I’m trying to keep it clean!).

Of course, the joy of a successful burp or poop, or the last spoonful of baby mush being eaten is a satisfaction in itself. But then, man is an animal with his own set of, more often than not, very demanding instincts. Hence, the ‘Do it’ when you can. Morning, noon, afternoon, evening and/or post-midnight – dance on chance, for there’s no time like any free time available. And hurry, they might be ready for the next feed sooner than you realise. You do not want to confuse squeals with screams and vice versa, even if both are the hungry kinds.

Stage 2 – The What-Why-How-Huh child

As they become young children, the birds and bees do not suffice to ebb that fountain of curiosity and are shooed off unceremoniously by their growing hands and minds.  Add to that feet which can carry them to your room, at any divine albeit ungodly hour, and enough reasons exist for you to turn red, or very red, depending on the degree of undress (I give up on keeping it clean!).  I am yet to reach that stage when midnight nightmares will find my boy scampering into my quilt, or Sunday afternoons will be spent with 3 cooks playing carrom, rather than one cook in a deep nap and 2 others, well, cooking a feast.

But I can imagine, already. Oh! Do not wait for the midnight hour to strike. If you haven’t belled the cat sleeping in the other room, there’s always a chance of an encounter of the embarrassing kind, like I just said. Also, if you thought HBO will air something inspiring to open your groggy eyes and whet that emotion once the 9-year-old has retired for the day, think again. The last I checked, Harry Potter was doing something with a broom at 11:30 in the night, and Jackie Chan was kicking ass in those clean and green movies we call Chinese. No, no inspiration there to open your sleepy eyes, et cetera in bed.

Stage 3 – I-know-what-you-did-last-night smarty pants

I do not know about you, but I totally chew all my nails off just thinking of having a teenager in the house. Just how are we going to do it? Alright. The idea of space will be better defined and the modern concept of privacy better understood. (To think that private chambers in palaces had sheer curtains, only!) But what about telling signs of things that conspired between his parents’ pair of romantic socks the previous night?

A blush here a nudge there a wink that was for me, but all three seen by my 15-year-old too, over breakfast the morning after. Hai Ram! To top it all (no pun), today’s national daily thought it wise enough to print a large (you dirty mind!) advert on its front page which reads – ‘Love stays longer than the love bites.’ I say, love bites too can stay long enough for your teenager’s prying eyes. And no, I doubt if you can pass them off as pimples by the time he has some of his own. Perhaps a drop of calamine might help to conceal matters a little, till the next one rears its head (absolute pervert you are!)

And as I gradually find myself lapsing into words that might bring the censor board knocking on my door, I shall close the bedroom’s door till another time. But like they say, there is always a moral to the story. While I’m still on Stage 1, I have had my eureka moment, already. I have finally understood why husbands and wives start resembling each other by the time they are 60. Cannot expect genes to take their course if the issues become such an issue that a couple has to stay like a brother sister duo.

Oh well! Rakshabandhan is around the corner. Maybe I can earn some money out of him. And no fear of my 2-year-old watching over this exchange, at least!

Sakshi Nanda went from studying Literature to serving the print media and finally settling with two publishing houses who called her editor for a couple of hard-bounds, no more! She writes as a work-from-home mother to realize herself as well as to be read, both – with her 2-year-old boy and her sarkari babu beau as the greatest source of ideas and inspiration. She believes eating baby food is therapeutic and that the pen is man’s best invention, after diapers that is! Meet her at: sakshinanda.blogspot.in

  • Very funny, you imagine too much too ahead of time….

    • It’s called bad imagination and good planning, Prasad! 😀

  • Now that’s what I call creative imagination. My God, the kid is just over two and you’ve already imagined life in the next 2 decades. Naked Truth revealed humorously. 🙂

    • Haha. Naked Truth revealed, indeed! Parenting and writing about it often gets really heavy duty. Just thought I’ll spread some smiles about an issue which I am sure many will relate to. Thanks for stopping by, Rekha! 🙂

  • Absolutely love how you have handled this topic without using any ‘children unfriendly’ words at all 🙂

    Quite interesting how you managed to keep it so clean and yet so humorous. You have a gift.

    And yes, I am looking forward to a follow up post 10 yrs from now as well 😀

    • Yes, I have a gift of wrapping ‘children unfriendly’ stuff in children friendly wrapping paper. 😀 Just another thing you learn when their eyes and ears start noticing things you never thought they would. Happy I could make you :D. If things continue the way they are, 10 years from now I will have a whole epic written on this topic. 😛 THANKS, Jairam. You made my day! 😀

  • ha ha….hubby and I were discussing this a few days back when I casually mentioned that the baby will be right here in the middle….spacing us apart! 😛 He , of course, didn’t take too kindly to it!
    Has planned in his mind to get a crib right away, though I am not too convinced about it! 😉

    • I have to tell you you are doing good to plan in advance. 😉 About the crib, I introduced N to one in his 7th-8th month. Kept it right next to my bed – for ease of feeding, changing diapers and of course, so that he could see us around even when he woke up in the middle of the night. It is not a bad idea, for reasons other than ones I speak about in the post. He loves his cot and still sleeps in it. Also, everyone sleeps comfortably if everyone has space enough to kick in mid-sleep 😛 (TIP – buy ones with railings on the side, instead of solid wood boards. They can hold your hand through it too. 🙂 Thanks for reading, Ghata! 🙂

      • Thanks for the TIP 😀 and trust me…the pleasure was all mine (no pun intended!! ) 😛

  • :-))) Good one, Sakshi.

    Psst …. you do realize that it’s not just the prying eyes ….. you’ve got to talk to them about all the itty bitty stuff as well, as they grow :-)).

    @Ghata : starting with the crib / cot as early as possible is a good idea. We did not do that with our firstborn and it was quite something to get her to sleep in a room of her own. With the younger one, it was the baby cot from the time he was a newborn. Like Sakshi said, just put the cot next to your bed cos that makes the midnight feeds and diaper changes easier than having to trudge sleepily into baby’s room and stub your toes in the process :-).

    • Thanks, Gauri. I like that big 😀 you got there! 😉 Yes, I am aware about the itty-bitty stuff talk. Perhaps, a post will come up once I reach that stage. And most probably, it’ll be a more comic one than this. Kids really have ways of catching you unawares, and how! 😛
      Happy you agree on the crib thingy. 🙂

    • Advice sincerely taken Gauri 🙂

  • Now that was hilarity with a point, Sakshi 🙂 Just loved reading this post.

    • This coming from the King of Humour makes me very very happy. Thanks, Suresh. 😀

  • Fun post, Sakshi :).

  • Sakshi! You have nailed the nail at its head on this one! 😀 I have been planning to write the same post for a while now, but I don’t think I would have written half as good as you have. 😀

    A & I have known each other for more than 20 years. We’ve been a couple for 12 years now. Dated, lived together and then married after 7 years of courtship…and it’s been barely 2 years since the little man crept between us on the bed, and occupied the space. We bought him a cot when he turned 1. And though he loves to play and sleep in it during the day, he doesn’t want to sleep in it during the night. Let me not go into what happens or rather doesn’t happen because of this…

    So we don’t need to wait till 60…we are already siblings. I look forward to Rakshabandhan too in that case. 🙂

    • Hehe. Then please pass on some tips my way, Ritu. Even if it’s a cloak of invisibility me and A can wear for a little while. 🙂 Thanks for liking the piece. I’m sure you would have written it much better!

  • Imagine being caught in the ‘act’ repeatedly, because of several kids of several parents troubling them. I set a kind of record in dressing up in 1 minute flat and appear ‘decent’ enough to handle another emergency.
    Finally, had to shift residence to move away from practice area! Could handle my own; handling an army 🙁
    Sakshi, Clean enough?

    • Haha! Yes, absolutely clear Dr. Asrani. I’m sure the new place did as well as your clinic at home – for medical practice i.e. 😀 Thank you for reading! 🙂

  • thats a timely post Sakshi…though m not as much experienced as u..m expecting…n only 2 months….
    since from the day its confirmed…m bugging him almost every night that i will be in the middle even after the kid comes…but he s not that much concerned abt what i have been telling him…..
    but m serious abt tht and i cant leave my place;-) even its my kid…x-( 😉

    • Well, congratulations for being a to-be mother. I think your husband will realise what you are talking about soon as the little one arrives. 😛 Worry not, after a few months, introduce a cot to your baby and see how pleased your husband will be with the idea, after having experience 3 cooks on the bed for a few months. 😛 Thanks for reading, @d538997bda3baf2527918d0911abd9ea:disqus

  • No. Clinic remained where it was. Moved home & you won’t believe, new area Mr C H Asrani

  • Haha..Good planning but be warned, no planning is enough babe. We are doomed 🙂

    • Haha … I rest warned, and doomed, both! Thanks Sfurti. 😀

  • chitra nair

    with a 9 month old in tow…I know exactly what you are talking about! lovely read…and oh so true….keep it coming! 🙂

  • I’m all guilty now, having given you “more reasons to dread the future”. But you know, what’s in the post is just pure guess-work of the owrst-case-scenario. My son is just 2.5, and I am hoping that for my sake and for yours, I’m proven very very wrong in this hypothesis. 😛 Thanks for laughing! 😀