So there are a lot of things about parenting that I love. Most obviously, well, my kids. Duh. But I also love watching them overcome new challenges, like when the toddler learns a new word, or feeling proud at the confident way in which my 4 year old has settled into School. There are also a fair few things about parenting that I’m not so keen on. Nappies. Sleepless nights. Whingey kids. You know, the usual.
However in addition to these things, things that I had sort of prepared myself for when I headed into the parenting game… there are a number of things about parenting that I didn’t expect.
Unexpected annoying things about parenting
1. The fact that you only get to have half conversations
Your best friend is having major martial problems with her hubby. You’re trying your very best to give her a supportive ear and decent advice but yet your conversation is interupted every 2 minutes by the whinging sound of ‘mummy, mummy, MUMMY!!!’ (obviously increasing in volume each time). No matter HOW many times you try and shhhh the wailing child, or make hand signals to wait a minute, chances are, your conversation will get abruptly halted whilst you answer a child who is no doubt desperate to tell you they have found a stone on the floor which you must admire IMMEDIATELY.
2. That kids are unable to hold anything. At all. Ever.
You could be carrying 6 shopping bags whilst blanancing a baby on your hip and have 3 coats under your arm, but yet they will still hand you their empty crisp packet once they are finished with it. Seriously, can’t you just hold it for a FEW MINUTES?! Turns out they can’t. And forcing them to do so will create the mother of all meltdowns.
3. That you can no longer walk at a normal person pace
I actually didn’t realise the extent of this until I went back to work after maternity leave and I realised that I didn’t no what speed I should be walking sans children. What speed does a normal person walk whilst basking in the luxury of having no little people hanging off them, stopping every second to inspect leaves and generally whinging about walking in general? Who knows. But what I do know is that a journey on foot with a child under the age of 5 takes AT LEAST 25 times longer than the same journey riding solo.
Unexpected great things about parenting
1. Being able to buy clothes that always look good
You know that thing when you are clothes shopping for yourself… you see an outfit hanging on the hanger and it is the depiction of beautiful. Into the changing room you glide with your chosen outfit, already thinking about how amazingly perfect it will be for your dinner date / evening out / special occasion. You slip into the beautiful number only to find that you look HIDEOUS.
However when it comes to dressing children, everything changes. Whilst I appreciate that this is not always the case, my kids seem to just fit into their intended clothes size. My eldest is 6 so I buy her age 6 clothes. And they fit. If they look good on the hanger then they look good on her, its that easy. Baby clothes especially always look cute and given the cooler whether I’m especially loving chunky cardigans at the moment too, I just wish they fitted me as nicely!
2. Always having an area of common ground when meeting new people (well assuming they are parents obvs)
Remember the days where you used to desperately scrape the conversation barrel of ‘where are you going on holiday this year?’ or ‘where do you go out?’ (yeah that one’s definitely dead and buried now) when you met new people? Well, the kid thing gives you no end of conversation topics with basically any other parent. Whether its moaning about being sleep deprived or discussing the amount of homework kids get these days (I swear I didn’t even get homework until I was 11 – I now feel like the homework dread has started all over again) there is always some common ground to discuss.
3. Having an excuse to be disorganised
I like to pretend that the reason that I am late everywhere is down to my kids. To be fair, a lot of the time it probably does have a lot to do with the fact that 2 minutes before I am supposed to be somewhere, I am running around the house trying to put clothes on the toddler and arguing with the 4 year old about going to the toilet. However, I will admit, that I wasn’t too hot on time keeping before the munchkins arrived.
Sometimes (a lot) I am late just because. Just because I’m late and I can’t get my act together in the morning and instead of getting the school bags prepared I sat blankly watching Mr Tumble whilst scrolling through social media and looking at wedding pictures of my next door neighbour’s friend’s cousin. If pulled up on my lateness though, there is no doubt that I will huff and puff and pretend that I couldn’t get the kids out on time.
Parenting is bloody hard – I deserve a few Get Out Of Jail Free cards, right?
This post was written in collaboration with Lacoqueta kids.