How is it that suddenly my baby has a busier social calendar than I do?
While I'm the type of person who would quite happily never leave the house again, I realise that this may be damaging to baby Diana, who will be ill-equipped to deal with the world at large if she's never exposed to it (although I suspect she will be an expert at interrogating high-level terrorists considering how many seasons of 24 she's already seen). So Project Baby Tourism has begun. And Diana's diary is already jam-packed.
After being ejected from the pub, I've become sensible and am taking Diana to baby-friendly locales: NCT group meet-ups, the doctor's surgery, the kids floor at John Lewis (there is one rocking chair that is ideal for nursing and has become my home away from home every time I'm in central London), Italian restaurants (apparently loading up on carbs is good for your breast milk, so I'm forced to eat a vat of pasta/a whole pizza at least once a week) and friends' and relatives' homes. I've also recently discovered baby classes and activities (aka another excuse to throw cash at unnecessary things for my child).
It turns out that babies can occupy their days doing what adults love to do: swimming, singing, practising yoga, going to the cinema and getting massages. And since my life currently revolves around nappies and breast milk rather than trips to the Mandarin Oriental spa, I'm clearly already living vicariously through my daughter.
First I took Diana to Baby Massage at the local children's centre. I am a fan of any excuse to run my hands over my baby's emerging rolls of chubbiness, but apparently this class serves a purpose as well - you learn techniques to help with wind and constipation. While the other babies stared up at their mothers, Diana gazed intently at the teacher for 15 minutes until she decided she was done and demanded to be fed for the remaining 45. So it looks like I may have a teacher's pet with a rebellious streak (and a hearty appetite) on my hands.
We also attended Mummy and Baby Yoga, which I have to admit was kind of amazing. A room full of babies is like a dream come true these days - not only are we certain to be welcomed but it's also wonderful to see what Diana will be doing in several months' time (like the nine-month-old who spent the whole class crawling around the room with his mum chasing after him, while drinking juice, eating rice cakes and even managing to stuff my ticket for the class into his mouth. How many months until my kid gets to be so disruptive? I can't wait!).
Since Diana can still barely lift her head up she was hardly doing much of anything, yogic or otherwise, but she did seem to enjoy looking around at everyone and bouncing along with me to songs at the end of class. While enjoyable, I can't exactly call the experience relaxing considering I kept staring at Diana like a ticking time bomb, wondering when she would cry and need changing. And whether her poo still resembled Slimer of Ghostbusters fame (sadly, it did).
I also took Diana to the cinema this week for the "Big Scream," a morning film screening for babies up to a year old, with a few other mums from my NCT class. And while a room full of shrieking and crying infants may sound like hell on earth to some, we had a great time even though the film, Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps, was pretty mediocre.
I watched the movie while Diana, perhaps wishing to object to the title, slept through the whole thing.