My usual response in stressful situations is to crack a joke and have a laugh, but I found myself embarrassed and on the defence. Just like STDs in your twenties, it turns out nits aren't such a natural source of humour when they happen to you...
Up all night, covered in filth, ears constantly ringing... When you think about it, a weekend at Glastonbury is pretty damn close to life at home with toddlers.
Has your home become toddler-occupied territory? Do you live within no-go zones changeable on a daily basis? Are orders frequently barked at you? "Don't sing!" "Stop talking!" No laughing!" Well, you are not alone - and in the spirit of misery loving some company, here are six signs you are living under a toddler tyranny...
When I had my first baby I was one of THOSE purists. My child was never going to watch TV, he would never eat anything that wasn't home made or organic, and he certainly would never ever grace the doors of McDonalds despite his mothers love of all things Big Mac shaped. Then I had my second child.
Of course I understand that we have many identities as women as well, and plenty of responsibilities, differences and other roles that help define us as people. But when it comes to describing our parental role I think we should have confidence in doing so, and even celebrate it openly.
Here's the thing Perfect Mum, you can't take us down. The truth is out there now. So either pull up a sticky chair and join us for a glass of wine - or leave us the hell alone.
With hindsight I should have insisted on a purse-sized mutt; a spaniel or a Chihuahua, because Sandy, the hyperactive border-collie that came to live with us turned out to be mad. It's as simple as that. He was a stark-raving-insane-out of control-lunatic. I have a hyperactive thyroid, but this dog made me feel like a sloth on Valium.
On good days being a mother it's full of smiles and laughter and cuddles, on bad days it's full of tears and tantrums from both the small people and me. On normal days it's busy, loud and always unpredictable.
We learnt that our lives had changed. We learnt that we had to assess our every move when he was with us. We found out about places that he couldn't tolerate. We learnt that the lights buzzed to loud in one restaurant, that the tables were too close together in another.
When your child starts school and they decide to tell their class mate they have a tummy mummy, how well educated on adoption will those class mates be? Or the other parents If we can't talk about adoption?
Step parents bring added joy into your life in the form of additional families. Obviously in some cases this can go awry and people don't always get on, but I've been lucky in the fact that I can count my step-parent's families as my own. They're all wonderful.
I decided that I should just put on my big girl pants and crack on with the mammoth task of de-cluttering our home, in order to accommodate the two adults that appear to reside here too. As I started to attack the problem, I noticed a pattern emerging which reminded me of a chapter in Gretchen Rubin's The Happiness Project.
It's funny really, because we all like to think spending time with our friends and family is the most precious thing in the world. It's what we all strive for. It's what matters. Yet finding time to do so almost feels impossible. Of course, we try.
I have decided to make a list of the parenting laws of sod. If I was very clever I would do it to the tune of Ironic. But I am now in my third week of chicken pox. So? I will just tiredly list them, moaning to myself as I go...
No-one ever reads the terms and conditions of anything anymore... And we have no idea what we're signing up to... Being a dad is no different!!! It's just like reading all those other Terms and Conditions, you have no idea what you're signing up to but you still just click "I Agree" ... or as I like to put it, you just click "Aaahh, I wish I'd never..."
We want our foster children to grow up to become doctors or teachers, engineers or scientists, to have the same opportunities and aspirations as our own daughters, and how wonderful that would be.