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25 September 2018Last updated
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Parenting

20 ways life has changed since having babies

Dubai-based Kirsty Radley gives a warts and all account of how her one-year-old twins have transformed her life

By Kirsty Radley
28 Jun 2015 | 03:50 pm
  • Life after having a baby.

    Source:Getty Images Image 1 of 2
  • Kirsty Radley with her twins.

    Source:Supplied Image 2 of 2

1 Having twins has made life so much simpler. Oh yes – no longer do I have to worry about coordinating my dress with my handbag – my changing bag goes with everything! It’s not neat and it’s not pretty, but it’s full of nappies (sometimes even dirty ones!), snacks and baby toys. See? Simple…

2 I used to love posh lip gloss, but now instead of Mac’s latest pout perfecter, I’m all about the versatility of nipple cream (it’s brilliant for chapped lips don’t you know?).

3 Baby brain means that instead of a book to read in my (now non-existent) dead time, I always cart around a notebook full of to-do lists. None of which I ever complete.

4 Luckily for me, Cara Delevingne and the Duchess of Cambridge have made having big eyebrows trendy – mine used to be like a manicured lawn in an English summer garden, but now they’re more like a jungle in darkest Peru.

5 I’ve always loved jeans – they’re trendy and comfortable – and, post-babies, I still love them, but now it’s because wearing them means I don’t have to moisturise or shave my legs…

6 My email inbox used to be full of last-minute holiday deals. Now it’s full of emails from baby websites explaining my children’s progress and what they should be achieving this month.

7 I used to love a movie night and always made sure I caught the latest Oscar-nominated films. These have now been replaced by CBeebies and the Disney channel. Popcorn and Teletubbies, anyone?

8 Ahh, mall sales… I used to love those. And I still do – except now the cute little dresses I buy are for my baby girl rather than me.

9 Friday brunches are great. Or at least they used to be. Nowadays, instead of getting messy at brunch, the weekends are an equally messy blur of soft play, spilt drinks and temper tantrums (so not that different really).

10 My fancy dry-clean-only clothes? Ha, they’re collecting dust as we speak. Now I’ll wear anything as long as I don’t have to iron it.

11 A cup of tea at my house is still fun, if you like full-fat milk and a selection of organic baby biscuits – why not have two, there’s no added sugar.

12 Flying before babies meant hot food, a book and a movie marathon. Now it’s a marathon of a different sort, involving walking miles up and down the plane, covered in fruit purée, singing twinkle twinkle little star while being (not always sympathetically) stared at.

13 My car, once my pride and joy, is now an extension of the twins’ play area and my kitchen, covered in toys, squashed raisins and a faint smell of sick. Road trip anyone?

14 For sale: hair straighteners, not been used for months, payment in dry shampoo, please.

15 Celebrity chef recipe books have been replaced by ones using words such as finger food, blend, mash, and suitable for batch cooking. Think I’ll give applying for MasterChef a miss this year…

16 Unplanned and last-minute are so last year. Now trips to playgroups, the park and supermarkets revolve around nappy changes, meals, and nap times. All carefully highlighted on the timetable on the fridge.

17 A massage was my favourite way to start the weekend, when I was working. Now, instead of stretching out and relaxing, on the rare occasion I do have a massage I lie down feeling guilty about everything I’ve got to do, while the therapist tells me that carrying the babies is causing knots.

18 My vocabulary has definitely expanded; I now have conversations using all manner of new words and phrases, from ‘latching on’, ‘dream feeding’ and ‘weaning’ to various ways to describe the contents of a nappy (kind of like the way Eskimos are supposed to have many different words for ‘snow’ – only much grosser).

19 Coffee shops were once chosen based on their large selection of cakes. Now where I go is determined by the availability of high chairs, baby changing facilities and easy-to-open doors (oh how we love an automatic door).

20 My new life as a mother is almost unrecognisable from the carefree one I lived before. It’s much more challenging – and yet so much more rewarding. I guess this is me for the next 18 years. And I couldn’t be happier.

By Kirsty Radley

By Kirsty Radley