When my son was born, I felt really alone and isolated from the world. I spent all my time with him and interacted very little with other adults. I didn’t mind so much, to be honest. But after a while it made the days drag on. One day when my son was about five months old, someone suggested I start a blog and I thought, “sure, why not?” I’ve always loved writing. So I started this blog. After a while I realized the blog wasn’t really enough. Someone suggested I start a playgroup. So again, I thought, “sure, why not?” And it was the best decision I ever made. I met amazing, incredible people from my playgroup. Some have become some of my closest friends.
On Parenting and The “Busy” Factor
One of the things I remember thinking while I was momming, blogging, and playgrouping, was why so many parents were always so busy. I just didn’t understand. How did they let their lives get so scheduled and jam-packed that they felt like they had no free time or sanity? It made no sense to me. I naively thought I was as busy as could be, and yet I never felt overwhelmed or unable to control my life.
Fast forward six years and here I am — so busy I can’t even think straight. It’s not necessarily a bad thing. I like being busy and I like doing activities. But now I get it. Before, my kids and I could come and go as we pleased. Even when my son was in preschool, we still were on a very loose schedule. If he was a few minutes late, it wasn’t the end of the world. If we were going on a family vacation and he missed three or four days of school, who cared.
Elementary School Woes
Elementary school is a different story. Kids need to be in school. (And I need him to be there, don’t get me wrong.) If they’re late, they get a slip. The bus comes at a certain time for pickup and it drops him off at the same time every day. While I enjoy almost eight hours of time while he’s off learning and playing with his friends, it makes the “extras” really difficult to fit in. After he gets home from school, he does homework. And after homework it’s dinner time. After dinner it’s time for bath and bed. And then it all resets and starts over the next morning.
Now we’re busy but we’re busy for very different reasons. Before when we were busy, it was just for fun. We kept ourselves busy for entertainment purposes. Now we’re busy for school, school work, preschool, and doctor appointments. Our weekends used to be low-key and if we felt like running errands or going out to eat, it’s because we wanted to. Now we run errands on the weekends because we have to.
I’m hoping I’m only feeling this way since I’m in training for a marathon and I’m unable to complete my errands during the day while my children are at school. What I fear is that this is just our new reality and that the next 15 years of our lives will continue on this track.
Instead of dwelling on all the “have to’s,” I’m going to make an extra effort to focus on the “want to’s.” I don’t want our lives to be dictated by being busy. I want it to be dictated by love, compassion, family time, and fun. Life is short. We gotta do it right.
TALK TO ME!
If you’re a parent, what’s one thing that you’ve learned that you thought differently about before you were a parent?
Linking up with Amanda for Thinking Out Loud.