So, a week on and the car is still not fixed … fingers crossed, the part we need replacing is due to be delivered today!!
Because Wilfred isn’t enrolled in a nursery, I’m very aware that I need to offer him a varied week full of new experiences, socialisation, learning and fun. Usually, I have him up and out of the house by 9:30am. But lots of the groups we attend and friends we visit are a bit of a jaunt by car, let alone on foot!! Being without the car, I was seriously panicking we’d both be going stir crazy with cabin fever.
However, I am pleased to report that we have had a lovely week together. I’m not sure I could do it all the time, but having a week out to simplify things and spend time together has been really nice. We have had friends over for coffee and play dates … but for the most part, its been just us and a less scheduled and quite laid back week. We’ve taken some walks in the local area, spent lots of time in the garden and played indoors. We’ve definitely (both) used our imagination more coming up with games.
Going forward (once I’m back on the road), I think I’ll try and schedule more down time in our week. Usually, if I’m at home, I’m cleaning, cooking, organising something … I’m rarely sat just ‘being’ with them and enjoying their company.
On Friday I’d spent a good hour getting myself and both kids ready, changing bags packed, snacks prepared and children bundled into car seats, when I discovered the car would start. Wilfred announced “mummy’s stalled the car!” (where does he pick these things up?) … I’m trying to get the car to turn over, have now started arguing with my two year old (“I did not stall the car. It’s just broken”. “Mummy broke the car!” Etc.), Rupert starts crying while Wilf’s still chanting “bro-ken bro-ken bro-ken!” and I realise I desperately need a wee.
Moments like this … when you have to decide what to tackle first, are probably the hardest part of ‘duel parenting’.
My advice is to take a deep breath and treat the situation like a plane crash. Sort yourself out first. You are no use to your children if you are flustered, distracted or, in my case, desperate for the loo!
… Next, decide (calmly) what is the most pressing matter and remind yourself that in 10 minutes’ time you’ll be sat inside with a cup of tea (waiting for the RAC).
Motherhood is essentially a course in management, I’ve found. And as with anything, the longer you stick at it, the better you get. Every day is easier than the last and 10 weeks in I think we’ve really found our feet. Which is just as well as I no longer have wheels!