No, I'm not talking about killing off the Mother-in-law here (that's a joke by the way, any Mother-in-laws reading), I am talking about when we finally dump the Changing Bag, finish our long-term relationship with it, and how we feel about 'Bag Bereavement.'
People talk about 'one last time' with our children, and I have seen poems that talk about the last bedtime story they want you to read, the last time they want to hold your hand. I think you always remember the last breastfeed, and the next 'last' breastfeed and the next 'last' breastfeed (you know the one, where you're not quite ready to give up!) A few people have said to me "You won't know what to do with all your stuff when you get rid of the Pushchair." I have thought this before. I do pack everything but the kitchen sink onto the Pushchair, and I know that my Pushchair days will be over soon *sob*. I know some people are quick to get rid of the Stairgates and get rid of toys to try and regain some sort of normality in their house (if 'normality' is even possible when you have children).
The thing about the 'Changing Bag' is that it's a very poignant part of your baby days. Whilst pregnant, you choose your bag to suit your tastes, as you would any other bag. You pack that bag before you even meet baby. You buy your 'first' clothes, wash them in 'Fairy Non-Bio', smell them and fold them away all neatly and try and imagine your little baby fitting in those tiny clothes. It is a little methodical process, and you really have no idea what you are about to embark on. Not an inkling of the new woman you will become, stepping out of that hospital as a mummy, with your baby and your changing bag. I still remember each of the 3 times leaving hospital. The first time with my daughter...a cold November evening, wow, the pain on my nipples in the cold air as I walked out. You don't forget the initial 'latching-on' pain do you? With my first son, I remember just not being able to leave...he wouldn't stop feeding. By the time I had finally got everything together, he was ready to feed again, then he needed a nappy change and then feed again. You know the score! Then my second son, it was a lovely bright February afternoon, and everything seemed like second nature.
The Changing Bag is an imperative part of your everyday life. You are delving inside that blooming thing all the time for wipes and nappies and muslins. It becomes your best friend, and companion. God forbid, if you should ever forget it, and leave it at home! But after 6 years of constantly living with your Changing Bag, you are almost 'wanting away with it'. If you have children close together like we did, you literally don't have a break from it. So as my youngest was potty training I upgraded to a much more glamorous bag, to try and make me feel a bit more stylish (like I used to be, sorry, like I tried to be), as I wanted to be less about the nappies now. Nova Harley make very fashionable bags that don't look like Changing Bags and make you feel glamorous, even when you have your little one's dinner smudged down your top, but you have to rush for midday pick-up. The Brisbane Bag is shown above in the Feature image in Canary yellow.
We are very fortunate that we have a miniature railway at a park nearby, and the kids love it. I have always just taken a large changing bag to the park with us, purely out of habit, but then I realised I just needed something small now. I remembered the little money pouches my friend and I had for travelling, and we called them 'Fanny Packs' not a very glam thing to call them I know (especially for two Grammar School girls). Whilst I was writing my Topshop Blog post, I discovered this super cool Bum bag (if you can use those words in the same sentence). As I don't like to conform and haven't seen anybody with a Bum bag in years, I had to buy it. I do wear it mostly over my shoulder though (I have to say this, so not to embarrass the husband). I love it, the print is gorgeous and it is tiny. I feel like I am rebelling, because I can. It can fit my phone, purse and tissues in and I have rolled up a tiny pair of shorts and pants for the toddler too. I feel like we have reached a new milestone as a family now, saying goodbye to our old Changing Bag and I only have slight 'Bag Bereavement'. It has been a special part of our lives, but down-sizing means we are onto the next bit of our children's adventures now. The easy bit, *smirk*.
What do you pack in your Changing Bag?
Pop over to mammarazzi blog to read more