Now that the little one is three years and a few months old, I am back to full-time working. But on Monday mornings, when I drop her to playschool and head to my office in sharp work attire, I can't help but feel nostalgic about my life as a stay-at-home mom. Here is a brief account of my days when my daughter was about nine months old.
Wake up startled to loud cries of "Mumma! Mummaaaaa!" Drag yourself to the crib and try to pat baby back to sleep. She cries louder: "Mummmmmaaaaaaa?" Pick her up, come back to bed. Feed her, praying sleepily that she falls asleep.
Sit cross-legged on bed, with baby on lap, still trying to get her back to sleep. Husband covers his ears with a pillow because of the now-howling infant. Breastfeed. Doze off while breastfeeding, almost fall off the edge of the bed, baby in lap.
Give up hopes of sleeping. Still pat the baby.
Baby sleeps. Husband wakes up. Lie down next to baby for some sleep; get up the next minute to pee. Come back to find Baby sitting and playing with your phone, fully awake.
"Pick up boiled vegetables from the floor. Cry a little. Baby claps."
Carry baby to the bathroom and try to get her to pee. Baby laughs. Try again, loudly reciting "Pee! Pee!" She giggles some more and splashes herself with water from the bucket.
Change baby's wet clothes. Come to the living room. Step on a Lego. Curse loudly and then cover your mouth, eyeing the baby. Baby wriggles out of your arms, wants to walk towards her toy basket.
Baby pulls her toy basket, toy basket falls, and there are toys everywhere. Pick up all the toys, loudly reciting "No throwing! No throwing!" Baby throws Angry Bird toy at your head. Husband laughs. Baby claps. Loudly recite, "Clapping! Clapping!" while rubbing your head.
Drink water, pick up baby and give toilet training another shot. Give up. Return to the living room. Baby pees on you. Change into another pair of sweatpants or husband's boxer shorts.
Husband leaves for work. Baby plays with toys. Show her porridge and bread; she points to porridge. Cook porridge for her, burn a toast for yourself and slather it with jam. Feed her one spoon of porridge. She spits it back on you and grabs a toy. Change into husband's other boxer shorts. Baby refuses to eat porridge.
Baby has eaten one spoonful of porridge; the rest is lying on the floor or sticking to your hair.
Take Baby for a bath. She refuses to get in the tub.
Quickly brush teeth while Baby is splish-splashing in her tub. She looks adorable!
Baby refuses to get out of the tub.
Baby is still in the tub, happily making her bath toys swim. Doorbell rings. Thrice. Baby refuses to step out of the tub. Doorbell rings again. Grab baby and run towards the door. Baby howls and pulls your hair.
How is it only 10? Baby is playing hide-and-seek with the house help, still in her pink bath robe. Eat two spoonfuls of porridge -- breakfast done!
Kind house help is finally working. Baby is busy with her toy piano, playing loud songs and tunes. Try to ignore your headache. Baby giggles at the dog sound that the toy makes. You smile and clap with her, loudly reciting "Dog! Dog!" feeling incredibly proud of the baby. Grab the phone and click around 30 pictures of the baby.
Go in the balcony, show stray dogs to baby. She claps and says "Dow! Dow!" So bright! Wipe tears of pride from eyes.
Still in the balcony, trying to spot a stray dog to show baby, who is shouting angrily, demanding more dogs.
No dogs. Come inside. Give baby a stuffed dog. She cheers happily, grabs him, pats him to sleep. Yawn widely.
Run around baby, trying to get her to eat vegetables and butter.
Try to wash the butter out of your T-shirt. Pick up boiled vegetables from the floor. Cry a little. Baby claps.
Explain to Baby why Mumma is crying and how Mumma is exhausted and hoping she sleeps longer and better from now on. She nods, gurgles and smiles widely. Then she poops.
Baby eats one carrot stick, two spoons of porridge, half a slice of apple and 240ml of water. Sigh loudly. Pick up the rock-hard toast with jam, throw it in the bin. Click 22 pictures of the baby doing random things.
Baby sleeps in her crib after you singing 27 songs. Quickly take a bath. Forget to wash your hair. Cook dal and rice for Baby. Eat the hot dal, burn your mouth.
Husband comes home for lunch. Sit with him and take a bite. Baby wakes up.
Husband is sleeping. Baby is dragging her pull-along duck and laughing happily. You slump on the couch.
Baby throws her duck on the floor loudly. Wake up startled. Baby hugs you and pats you. Smile and hug her tightly. Try to get her to eat an apple. Fail.
"A mom from the park says hi. You tell her there's dried Farex on her eyebrows. Feel good."
Husband goes back to work. Take baby to the park. A mom from the park says hi. You tell her there's dried Farex on her eyebrows. Feel good. Baby runs after a huge Lab. Run behind her, laughing.
Baby scares the dog owner, who takes the Lab away from the park. Baby cries. Look for stray dogs. Find none. Typical! Come back home, telling baby a made-up story about a dog.
Forcefully feed Baby dal rice. Husband comes home. Baby wiggles out of your hold and runs to him like a tortured prisoner. Husband feels good. You feel good that she's eaten.
Eat dinner with husband while he holds baby and she picks salad from his plate and eats. Admire the peaceful scene and feel good. Baby throws salad leaves on you and giggles. You giggle and eat the leaves. Yum, food is good, who knew?
Husband plays with baby while you check your e-mails. Delete all. Buy diapers online. Get distracted by new range of stilettos. Remind yourself you can't wear heels since you've gained weight. Cry a little. Place an online order for a tummy tucker.
Cancel the tummy tucker order.
Drink coffee with husband. Tell him you will go for a walk after baby sleeps. He laughs heartily and massages your shoulders. Yawn. Sleepily order tummy tucker over the phone.
Take the sleepy yet protesting baby to bed and sing lullabies that she loves. Eighteen songs later, baby finally sleeps. Put her gently in her crib. Exhale. Click a quick picture of the sweetly sleeping beauty, and tiptoe outside the room.
Reflect on the day and decide to manage time better tomorrow. "Walk?" Husband asks sheepishly. Glare at him and put on your walking shoes... ha ha, just kidding. Roll eyes, give husband a look, blackmail him into making you a large mug of hot chocolate. Drink hot chocolate. Go to bed.
A version of this article first appeared on Parentous.
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