Being a mum changes you.
Before I had kids, I was not the type of person who would discuss bodily functions and toilet habits in public. I would never publish stories about my kids poo, my night time ablutions, much less my husband's toileting habits.
But I have kids now, so I am very happy to discuss poo with you. I am also happy to yell out private things in public. And lucky me, it won me a prize!
Let's take a step back for a minute...
A few nights ago I attended the book launch of friend and fellow blogger, Glennys from The Ponder Room. Unlike me, Glennys is a real writer and she has written a number of books, the latest of which Me Time*, provides a number of strategies to gain that elusive bastion of the busy mother - time alone.
So while I was sucking down my complimentary champagne and orange juice and enjoying being out of the house with only one of my three offspring [about as 'me' as I'm going to get at the moment] she asked the gathered crowd the following question.
'What is the number one strategy people use to get some me time?'
There were a number of reasonable and G-rated responses. It must have been the champagne because I then blurt out at the top of my lungs:
'I hide in the toilet to get away from my kids.'
I was absolutely right, and it won me a prize.
Two out of every three mums hide in the loo to get some time alone. That is deeply disturbing.
Now I don't know about you, but my bathroom isn't very big or very attractive. There are potty seats and empty cardboard rolls on the floor, dust bunnies the size of a small cat, sodden face washers, dirty underpants, and for some unfathomable reason about seven toothbrushes strewn about even though there are only five of us and one doesn't even have teeth yet.
Things must be pretty desperate if this is the destination we choose for some privacy.
Did I say privacy? Don't make me laugh.
As well as talking about things that really should stay private, I have also changed post-children in another way. I now have books piled up next to the loo.
Before kids, I thought this was something only old men did. But now I am using the toilet as a retreat I have a stack of reading material for my stolen moments. When I was pregnant with Baldy Baby, it was a baby name book and a well thumbed version of 'Up The Duff'. Now I have a copy of 'ProBlogger' and 'Why First Borns Rule the World and Last Borns Want to Change It'.
And so to the asterisk which you may have noticed lurking above. I am going to run my first ever competition.
Glennys has provided me with a copy of Me Time which I will be sending to one lucky reader. I realise that if you have enough time to read this blog and enter a competition, you might not need any help. You may already have your strategies in place, and are sitting in the loo right now with your phone or iPad on your lap, flicking through your favourite blogs.
But you might know someone who would benefit from this book. So send me a comment about your time-poor friend and why they need some help getting time to themself. The best response will earn a totally cool book. And if you are a totally cool friend you can offer to babysit their kids while they sit down and read it.
Rules of the competition. Umm let's see...
1. Open to Australian residents only and you must have a letter box, PO Box or friendly neighbour where the book can be sent.
2. Competition starts today, 4th May 2012 and will close 25th May 2012.
3. The winner will be chosen based on their answer - probably someone who either makes me laugh or makes me cry. If you can do both, kudos to you.
4. Remember, you are talking about your friend, so don't divulge any information they wouldn't want made public, or if you do, at least make them anonymous.
5. The winner will have to provide a postal address (either theirs, or their friend) so I can post the book. I promise I won't use that information for any other purpose, like stalking you, or give it to anyone else who might stalk you.