I started to write this post when I was at the park with my four beautiful children, Two days ago. Much excitement from them as the play equipment had been replaced and much relief from me as the park is just across the road. it should have gone wonderfully.
Except for one thing. It is the last week of the school holidays.
Instead of things going wonderfully there were fights about swings and who was pushing who. There were arguments about who could do things better. The pram got stuck in the extremely new extremely deep wood chips and it was like some sort of Spartan fitness routine to get from the swings to the slide to the bench so I could sit down. I started to write. Then a noise. I looked up from having breathlessly unbogged the pram wheels from the woodchips just in time to see Miss Boo run up the small slide in her thongs and stack it over the side. As I ran (lurched really, it had been a big day) the short distance over to her to check for damage and remove the huge amount of woodchips stuck to her clothes (really, these things are troublesome, they also stick like velcro!) I felt a flash of guilt from being a bad mother before the logic kicked in, I was not neglectful, I just happened to be looking at my pram at that second, I happen to have extremely high energy children. “The internet parents know what it is like.” I said to myself and I knew that all over Australia beyond-frazzled parents were wondering what household chores could be turned into a “fun school holiday activity”. Sorting through ideas to survive the last few days of Summer vacation with in increasingly limited budget, and children whose ability to be disagreeable is increasing exponentially with the decrease of energy and capacity of parents, a lot of whom are (trying to ) work from home. This comforted me. This idea of virtual solidarity. I mentally sent a Katniss salute and opened my notebook to start writing again only to have the two boys smash heads together on the new spring mounted motor bike toy. Finally Master Bean who is nine and Miss Boo who is three now started to have a screeching argument about whose turn it was to turn the mystery crank and, Gosh, Look at the time! It was home time suddenly!
Knowing that there are people out there having the same (sometimes ridiculous) struggles really helps me to staunch up, breath through things and not lose my shit entirely.
Because you guys, you Facebook friends and Tweeps and bloggers share your thoughts, your investigations and treatments for mental and physical health issues, the silly parenting stories, your drinking and swearing and frustration I know I am not alone. You share your stories and tips and things you like and I understand things better. I understand you and your struggles better and I am more forgiving of other people with the same struggles. I can see things from other people’s perspectives better.
Because you share I can now finally put a doona cover on the right way and have stylish shoes that I can walk distances in. Because you share I know that being fat and fit at the same time is totally a thing and that is good.
Because you share the frustrating and funny I don’t feel so perplexed with having a nine year old who scored amongst the highest in the country with his NAPLAN score (he’ll tell you all about it.. just ask.. or even if you don’t!) reads Agatha Christie books in less than a day (I bought him five op-shop books yesterday to try to keep him amused but he has already read them. hmmph) but FORGETS TO WEAR SHOES when we leave the house and struggles to comply with basic instructions.
I know that the extraordinary flouncing tantrums Miss Boo has are symptoms of having a “three-nager” in the house and this will pass (*phew* she’s not a sociopath!).
So, thank you. Thank you for making yourself vulnerable and keeping it real.
Thank you for sharing.