There are some weeks when being a parent can be frustrating.
Really fucking frustrating.
You love your children, that’s a given, so let’s just bank that one and know that it’s not up for debate.
But sometimes, and I’m not sure if it’s OK to say this out loud but I’m going to anyway.
Sometimes, just sometimes, I dream of not having any children.
Of lying in at the weekend.
Properly lying in, not 8am.
Seriously, when did pretending to be asleep until 8am become a luxury?
Lying there trying to drown out the warrior cries of ‘MUMMMMMMMIIIIIEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!’ from the other room as they are shushed and assured that mummy will be up very soon, she’s just ‘having a rest.’
A rest? A REST?? How can that EVER be restful?
Restful is being in a sound-proof room with black-out blinds. Restful is relaxing on a sun lounger with a massive glass on gin and tonic. Restful is sleeping more than six consecutive hours over the last 5 years.
I dream of no-pressure going out.
Of just nipping out for a drink after work. Of sitting in a pub beer garden in the early evening May sun just because I can.
Instead of organising a babysitter months in advance, putting so much pressure on an evening to be good that it’s almost guaranteed to either be total shit or end in an argument.
The alternative is relying on incredible friends to bail you out and look after your kids and, although you’re delighted to be out, there is the little voice in the back of your mind that keeps whispering, ‘I bet they’re still up. I bet they’re kicking off. I bet your friend will never offer to babysit ever ever again after tonight.’
I dream of having more disposable income in a month than the cost of a mediocre bottle of wine from Lidl.
I guess that is the pay off for moving so far away from family that we virtually live in the English Channel, but once you’ve paid out for childcare, you might as well right-off ever buying anything that isn’t from E-bay or Peacocks.
I sometimes look at myself in my ‘smart’ clothes. The items I’ve had since pre-children that I pour myself into and slip a disc trying to do up, the reverse body dysmorphia telling me that, of course you can still fit into them, you look fabulous. You’re definitely back to your fighting weight. It’s just the scales that need the battery replaced.
Or the late-night E-bay purchase that is going to solve a multitude of wardrobe malfunctions, but instead is nothing like the description, stinks of fags and I don’t have the time or inclination to wash then resell.
Wowzers . This isn’t exactly a Sunday night jolliathon.
So, lets get a bit of perspective here.
Some weeks are cracking, they fill you up with love and you laugh more than you weep into your large vin rouge.
Some weeks are exhausting.
And the latter makes everything else slightly harder work.
But maybe if parents could work towards being a little less tireder, a little less skint, and have the occasional absolutely extraordinary no-pressure, no-hang-over night out, we’d all be laughing.