Thursday, June 24, 2010
First Time Parents
Can you remember the days when you only had one child? Don't you agree, your style of parenting has almost completely changed once you have more than one child to look after. D'ur!!! Sometime I long for those days when it was just me and Will, and the buggy, and long days interjected with twice daily sleeps. No school pickups, no kindy dropoffs, no after school activities. It was a simple, relatively peace time. Problem was, it didn't really feel like it at the time. But when I think back now.
Sometimes when I see mums with one buggy, a coffee, and little containers of appropriate baby snacks, I feel a little envy. And I think it's the simpleness of it all, and that quality time you can dedicate to your one baby. Don't get me wrong, I know how unsimple it is, and I know that the challenges are there for sure. They're just different.
I was watching Smith at swimming today, and there was a stay-at-home dad (I'm guessing) getting his son out of the water. He had a baby in a buggy, and a little guy, about 3 who he was dressing. I watch this man each week, and it always looks hard. He's standing dripping while he puts what seems like many layers on his son, shoes and socks, snack, the whole palather, while sometimes (I'm guessing when he can be bothered) he gets in for a lesson with his baby. Hard, hard, hard.
But today, while his son and him were still dripping, he got out a bowl of cereal mush from a plastic bag. I think it had been cheerios and milk at breakfast 2 hours ago. And he starts to spoon this into the little boy. He had a ziplock bag of raisin bread ready for after. "Why are you bothering", I thought "get dressed first". I'm imagining that the little boy didn't have time to finish his breakfast so Dad brought it to swimming so he would finish it before he was allowed his bag of Rice Wheels. All seemed so hard. But dedicated.
I sat there in my state of happy calm, watching my little guy, remembering when I did it tough too. We all have right?
The (very scary) director of Smith's kindy, cornered me today and commented how well I was looking (really?, she obviously hasn't seen this,) She said "do you think it's having 3 days to yourself that's doing it?", and I think it is. Having a bit of space, a bit of peace and calm back, a bit of exercise (although I'm writing when I should be running!), and a bit of purpose, must all positively impact your world. Sadly my days with my kids at home are almost over, and it is sad, and I do miss it, and I do regret really not being in the moment more when I was living it. It was about survival rather than being. Gritting my teeth and getting by. patting myself on the back occassionally for being Blimmin-Incredible-Freakin-Super mum.
And I'd do it all again in a heart beat.
I just wouldn't grit my teeth next time.