Top 3 signs you’re in the trenches of parenting!

If you’ve had to wipe a bum other than your own today then you’re still in the trenches of parenting.

Similarly, you’re still knee-high in mud if you still have plastic things in your power points so one of your kids doesn’t shove a fork in there.

I have to say that there are moments in my life when I feel that I’m through the worst of it.

I no longer have a child hanging off my boob or spewing milk over me after a feed. I don’t have to worry about leaky bosoms, babies throwing themselves over their cot or making sloppy food for teething babies that can only communicate with crying.

But the giddy high doesn’t last for long – about six minutes to be exact, just long enough for my 2.5-year-old to try to texta himself into a smurf.

photo - use featured

Here’s 3 other signs that you are entitled to pull up a chair and join me in the trenches of parenting:

1. You’ve had to stop mid-plank during PT at the park because your 4.5yo and 2.5yo are pulling out half-eaten chewing gum from the bushes and re-eating it.

Oh how I wish this was a made-up scenario but yes this has actually happened to me. I was beyond furious when I realised what they were doing and was THAT mum that completely lost her crackers at her kids in public!

2. Play dough is banned from your house because your kids eat it, stuff it down their undies, feed the fish with it and stuff it up their nose. Again not made up events and sadly I have photographic evidence to prove it.

play dough up nose

3. You are considering bagging up all the hideous sand that you find in your child’s shoes, socks and pockets from school/kindy/daycare, and selling it so you can afford a nanny so you never have to send your child to a place where they roll around in sand all day!

And don’t even get me started on the sand that falls out of their shoes the next morning when you are putting them back on so they can head back to school/kindy/daycare and fill them up with cat-wee soaked sand again!

I HATE SAND! Give me splinters from bark chips any day.

For those with older children, when was it exactly that you felt you were out of the trenches of parenting?

Or is it just myth? Perhaps once you finally clamber out of the toddler trenches you head into the spooky woods otherwise known as the schooling years.

Enlighten me, scare me or for goodness sake make me feel better about my boys eating some gum that feral people who litter chucked in the bush. Tell me your child has done worse? PLEASE!

Are you joining me in the trenches of parenting?

Or are you cheering/laughing from the sideline because you’ve been there and done that?


Flogging with Grace @ With Some Grace




  1. Well & truly in the trenches with you Em! This week has seen me covered in spaghetti spew, sharing a single bed with a sleeping 4 year old & being slapped, kicked & rolled on for hours, going to work with snot (not mine) in my hair & play dough stuck to the seat of my pants. No cheering, only sympathetic nodding here!

    Oh & I hate sand too!! xx

  2. I’m in the trenches with you – by 6.30am this morning I’d already changed two nappies!
    Nodding along in agreement with you, especially re: the sand issue. As well as bringing home half the sand from kindy this week, my boys also decided they’d bring home as much sand from Main Beach as they could BOTH TIMES we were there this week πŸ™
    I’d also like to add you know you are in the trenches if your handbag is the size of a saddle bag filled with nappies (two sizes of course), wipes, half eaten banana (eww), and an entire matchbox car set. On the plus side is there anything cuter than a baby and a toddler in matching onesies?!?! That’s my latest fad to help get through!

  3. merilyn says:

    I’m laughing and thinking mmmmm!
    your son is ambidextrous too … he just wants tats! lots of role models out there!
    OMG second hand chewies gross … once my daughter had chewy in her very thick hair had to cut it out
    hysterical child and mother! enjoying motherhood hun? lol m:)X

  4. Stop it! You’re scaring me! The chewing gum. Oh my Lord.
    I get the sand thing. It’s tumbles out right after I’ve vacuumed every time. I could bet big bucks on it.

    I don’t have too many stories yet, I’m still on the boob hanging side mostly so just know that whilst you go through I’m right behind you in the trenches x

  5. My girls are 7 and 4.5 and the very worst of it is behind me. But just when I think I’ve gotten over the edge of the trenches the younger will do something like come into our bed 5 nights in a row and I’ll feel like I’ve slipped back down into the ditch again. And I still occasionally have to wipe bottoms. I am soooooooooooooo over that shit (literally).

  6. The trenches never end, they just become filled with the opposite sex, “nobody likes me”, one direction (and Justin Beiber was in there for a while), and high school.

  7. Well she is now 22 and house sitting for a friend of mine – NOW I feel like I’m out of the trenches of parenting (having said that I still worry about her when she is sick and I can’t keep an eye on her and when she has to go home late and there is nobody at the house when she gets there !!! ) LOL
    Have the best day !
    Me xox

  8. Oh dear its like looking into a crystal ball and seeing my future!….I am still in the milk spews, mushy baby food stage. Horrific!!

    The bottom wiping just seems to be getting progressively worse!

  9. I just lifted the drop sheet from under my boy’s high chair and shook the cornflakes into the bin. I can also smell something lovely in his nappy that we’re about to go and change. Still well and truly in the trenches with you, Em! x

  10. I think I would scream my head off if I saw Lil Pumpkin eat someone else’s gum.. Oh GROSSSSS! I guess we felt out of the trenches when Lil Pumpkin slept through the night better. She used to wake up every 2 hrs or so which drove us nuts since we’re both working. Hang in there, the schooling woods since better with sunshine! (for us anyway :P)

    Ai @ Sakura Haruka

  11. I recently calculated that by the time Benedict is out of nappies I would’ve spent 7 consecutive years changing nappies! It’s a good thing this parenting lark doesn’t come with a predisclosed work contract.

    • 8 years of wiping shit off other peoples arses! (Including the post final happy wearing toilet training time) I’m actually mildly horrified!

  12. I’m no longer deep in trenches but I do retain a bit of Trench Foot and frostbite! (teen years are mortal combat but less gross) Think I’ve managed to block the really early years where they were ‘evacuating’ constantly from both ends πŸ˜‰
    My naughty son revealed lately that he threw his ‘healthy’ sandwiches into the bin every day all through Primary, sharing his bestie’s jam sandwiches, cake and biscuits. I was oblivious! πŸ™‚

  13. I am DEEP in those trenches – and my kids have eaten chewy off the bottom of seats in an airport lounge – ha!

  14. I’m still mos definitely in the trenches. I’ve wiped a bum, made slopping food and a bottle this morning. I dont see it changing anytime soon because shes still only got 2 bloody teeth (at 11 months!).

  15. Well and truly stuck with you in the trenches, the very first thing I did this morning was try to contain the most enormous sloppy poo from 3 yr old. Before breakfast. The house still stinks. I fear I will never get out I’m knee deep in poo.

  16. Having spent half the morning arguing with a cocky 4 year old, I think it’s just one phase to the next!!

  17. My trench is covered in glitter and loom bands.

  18. My kids are 4 and nearly 2 and I have sore cheek muscles from laughing at your post!! OMG THE SAND. A friend of mine actually ripped her sandpit out because she got so sick of sand in the house!

  19. LOL! Pulling out used chewing gum and eating it…so gross but so funny! Sorry.
    I am so heavily deep in the trenches of parenting. So much so, I had to go to bed at 6pm the other night. As soon as Mr Surfer came home, he took over (he had no choice). I don’t even bother thinking about it being temporary or “this too shall pass”, I just save that energy to get through it. Survive it. Know what I mean?

  20. I haven’t slept for a week, I wipe someone else’s bum and nose multiple times a day and my little one is teething. I thought this was the worst of it. Eating chewing gum out of bushes, OMG! It’s all ahead of me still. From your friend in the trenches xox

  21. Em it gets physically less exhausting, but emotionally more exhausting. All the talking through everything occasionally makes me wish for babies again.
    Not usually for long though. πŸ™‚

  22. I’ve said it before, it doesn’t get easier, it just gets different! The things that were hard before get easier, but then other stuff gets hard. It’s all relative really. But knowing this also doesn’t make it easier and I say this as I hide in my bedroom, counting down the hours till both bubs are in their beds and I can pour a glass and eat the Magnum Ego I have hidden away in the freezer (and am seriously contemplating eating as my actual dinner! Lol!)

  23. Ugh. Wait til you get homework to do. And I mean you. You’re going to feel like you are willing every pencil movement across the page with some sort of telekinesis. Some days I totally get the parents who just cave and actually DO the homework FOR their child. (But don’t do that, ok?!)

  24. Michelle H says:

    Trenches. Tantrums at 10 paces from Mr 2 and serious arse-wiping with sort-of-toilet-trained Mr 3.5. Oh actually plenty of arse-wiping with Mr 2 as well – he is still in nappies. I forgot for a minute because I have the six-thousandth (is that a word) cold they brought home from daycare and I can’t think straight. They also bring home sand – it is truly the ‘gift’ that keeps on giving. I have considered completely undressing them outside but, you know, Winter.

    I cannot eat a meal without listening to the sound of squealing (how they manage to do this while eating I don’t know), cannot do a crap in peace or have a shower without someone yelling ‘Mummy, Muuuummmmmyyyy!’ while bashing the door down. All I can think is ‘Why are you not stopping this? Where are you??!?’ of my Husband, who was left to supervise while I had said shower/toilet visit.

    They are cute though.

  25. Hahahaah! You are not alone Em! My 3 yo stuffed her nose AND ears with play-doh too! And poked the electric fan with her fingers and stepped on a dog’s tail on purpose and was almost bitten gawd, I could go on and on and on….
    Hang in there!

  26. The best opening line I’ve ever read!!! xx

  27. Oh god, I am still in the trenches! Hope to see you soon.

  28. I’m past all the sand in their clothes stage but am heading into the teen years this week when Mr 12 turns 13. Not sure whether to be relieved or terrified. I’ll let you know how it goes…

  29. I can SELL all that sand? Good grief, and here I am like a chump working for a living when I could be offloading all that precious, gritty gold onto the international sand market.

  30. One word: trenches.


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