And We All Moved Up the Family Tree


I got my Nanny status on Saturday morning. I am indeed a Nanny, it would appear. Just going by my name felt wrong – it lacked my new status. So I grabbed hold and pulled myself up onto the next branch of the family tree. Husband is still debating his own new title, declaring that as he never knew his grandfathers he doesn’t have a name to turn to. This is a cop-out. He’s never been keen on the idea of growing up and being responsible for other people. Let alone seeming old and responsible for even more. He’s definitely resistant to joining me on the grandparent branch.

But actually, the view from up here is quite lovely. I got to be at a birth for one thing without actually having to be the one doing all the work. It was a privilege to experience it from the other end, so to speak. Eve was amazing (22.5 hours takes some doing and she did it all by herself, although I think would have swapped places with anyone if she’d had the chance). She coped with it all with such calmness, even when it wasn’t going 100% to plan. She didn’t tell us where to go when we were at her side like some out-of-practice cheer leading team. She let us eat in the room even when she couldn’t. She grew-up over night.

I learnt some things too. I learnt that I can cope seeing one of my children in pain, that a baby’s head comes out looking the other way up to what I expected (you’d think having had four children of my own that wouldn’t have come as a surprise but I guess I’ve only experienced birth from the other end before) and that I could never be a midwife. Midwives are some of the most amazing people on the planet and my respect for them goes unbounded.

I also learnt that all things are relative. Noodles seemed so much bigger on Saturday than he did when I tucked him into bed on Friday night. Boo seems so much more mature, so excited and ready to embrace her auntie status, already besotted by her nephew.

And I was reminded that love is amazing. How can I have the capacity to love yet another small person with all my heart when I already do just that for each of my children?

I just wish there was the same endless capacity to hours in a day. Or maybe not. 38 hours with only 20 minutes sleep seemed like a very long time indeed. Waiting for visiting hours on Saturday felt like an eternity.

But welcome to our Gluestick family, little one. You’ve pushed us up the family tree and made us all older than our years, but right now I wouldn’t have it any other way.


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