I don’t know how I filled all the hours in the day pre-children. Obviously there were less hours in the day back then. Weekends only had one 7 o’clock for example. But I must have sat around a lot. Fluffing through the hours of the day. Pottering leisurely around the shops, reading books with more than 8 pages and no pictures, popping to the supermarket for a dinner I felt like cooking on a whim (now unless it can be bought at Tesco Express down the road it isn’t being eaten ’till the kind Ocado man brings it next week).
These days if I get to sit down 3 times a day to eat meals I’m winning. And sitting down eating without a child on my lap, I’m acing parenting. When I do find myself, on rare occasions, with all children occupied and happy, the to-do-list kicks in and it’s magic super powers keep my bottom firmly off that sofa and make my feet move at warp speed.
Last weekend, Mr G took the kids to the park. By himself. All 3. I was at home. Alone. With only the quiet for company. I raced around the house scraping dried on ricecake off the high chair and neatly piling the weeks paperwork on the worktop (piling is filing right?) before using every ounce of my strength to break the to-do-list ties and I SAT DOWN. On the sofa. During the day. With my new ‘pom-pom maker’ (who knew cardboard circles to wrap wool around could now be engineered so much to make this task so much easier. That piece of plastic will probably save me about, um…….3 hours a year. Result.) David Attenborough and the Great Barrier Reef on the TV. A whole hour of calm.
And when I found out that the big kids had fallen spectacularly into the mud at the park, I was even more thankful for that hour. Thanks for taking one for the team Mr G x