6 Things I Don't Have Time For Now I'm A Parent
1. People - now perhaps that sounds harsh. I don't mean all people, I just mean most people. You know there are those people in your life that you accumulate as you go along that don't really add anything to it, they're just there. I don't have time for those people. And I don't have time for the people that just randomly want to chat about shit when you're stood in a queue at the Drs or while you're trying to pay for petrol. I don't have time for those nobhead mums who think it's appropriate to constantly compare and evaluate every aspect of their child and yours. And most of all, I don't have time for non-parents who want to talk about how great it is not having children and the fact that you now look so tired all of the time. The people I do have time for are very small in number: my partner, my kids, some of my family and a very select group of friends that I can stand being around after having only three hours sleep in two days. This might sound like the ramblings of a very grumpy, over tired mum, and it is, that doesn't mean it's not true. Having kids has made me realise - most people are twats. And I don't have time for twats. I'm so grateful to my kids for meaning I only have amazing lovely people left in my life.
2. Shaving - this one goes without saying. I just physically don't have time in my day to run a razor up and down my legs, in fact you're lucky if I've had time to shower, so shaving is a definite luxury which I can't afford at this point. I'm not one of those gross hippy mums though, I do have the good grace to cover up my forest covered legs with stain covered jeans or leggings.
3. Sleep - my kids are now old enough that they are sleeping through the night, that doesn't mean that I do. Working out the following day's plan is like organising a military operation and takes a lot of time; time I don't have when actually immersed in the day before so the only time slot I have is night time. This is also the time in which I can do other things that generally need a kid free environment: ironing, cleaning, drinking etc and all of those things take precedent over sleep. So the fact that I look like a zombie isn't really because I have kids, its because I'm a fucking amazing multitasking queen of the world who makes sure that everything runs like clockwork and everyone is happy (including myself, see previous comment about drinking- it's what bed time is for).
4. Shopping - I used to love shopping, spending hours walking up and down looking for that perfect pair of jeans to invest in or that super cute top that was going to wow everyone I saw when wearing it. Now I, A. don't have the time to shop, B. couldn't give a shit what I look like - hence, I don't shop. When my wardrobe is looking desperately sad I put it all into bin liners and take it to the charity shop. I then go online and buy the first ten-twenty things I vaguely think looks ok in my size. I then return everything apart from two items and this is what I live in until the next wardrobe cull and online binge.
5. Being Selfish - I was never a really selfish person pre-kids, but I definitely enjoyed having time to myself, having a bit of a pamper, treating myself to something I didn't really need. Not any more. I do sometimes miss this 'selfishness' because actually, really, it's just 'looking after yourself' stuff. But don't fear, I've replaced it with drinking and living in the knowledge that in six-twelve years my kids will be self sufficient and I can once again have a lie in, watch crap on tv whilst painting my nails, totally undisturbed. (P.s. I do actually quite like my mornings being goofy in bed with the kids, much more fun than painting my nails).
6. Sweating The Small Stuff - worry is something that goes hand in hand with being a parent. It's almost like you have to sit a course to learn how to worry about every aspect of your child's life, their environment, your ability to be a parent, world peace and so on. But, I realised very quickly, after a six month bout of post natal depression, that none of that matters. A very wise midwife said to me 'As long as your children are loved, then you're doing a good job'. Yes it is cheesy but actually, she is right. If your kid isn't top of their class or always has crap on their clothes, if they aren't reciting War and Peace by the age of two or doing brain surgery by the age of fifteen it really isn't that big of a deal. Just as long as they're happy and you're happy, then the rest is irrelevant.
So my one piece of advice is this, yes you may have hairy legs, look like a blind charity shop worker dressed you and like your face may be something zombies would be jealous of but, if you're still smiling and your kids are smiling then pour yourself a glass of something and give yourself a big pat on the back - you're doing a fucking amazing job!