All the things there’s never enough of
It seems like there’s never enough of anything at the moment. Does anyone (everyone?) with small children feel like this? Ever? All the time? Even…sometimes?
Things there never seem to be enough of:
- Hours in the day
- Days in the week
- Time to do anything
- Food, milk, bread, fruit, nappies and wine in the house
- Space for anything in the house (we’re desperately redistributing two year’s worth of random loft stuff into other rooms, it’s an interesting challenge)
- My patience, right before bedtime
- Sleep at night
- Space in my head for remembering important and useful things (like conversations I’ve just had. Or things we urgently need from the shop – see above)
And even four years on, there’s never enough time to get ready – we’re still always late to leave the house.
When I think back to my life pre-children, I really wonder, what did we do? Every evening and whole weekends, often with nothing planned but going out for dinner then having a long lie in. And all that gloriously empty time spent commuting that seems, well, luxurious now. ‘Enjoy the free time before the baby arrives’ everyone said, and of course all I wanted was for it all to get started.
I wrote this post about how you never get anything done with a newborn, and although you do get more time – and hands – back when they get older, life with a toddler means you’re constantly ‘on’ – checking they’re not running off / retrieving them from halfway up the stairs / monitoring everywhere for the deliciously unsuitable things they can’t wait to gleefully get their hands on.
Some days we do nothing much, yet not much gets done.
A lot of time life with two feels like there’s never enough of me, and I’m pulled in all directions (literally, at times, often in a comedy fashion). And in the bleakest of tired moments, there’s always that thought, am I even enough?
But, all that aside, I do feel I’m much more prolific with much less time as a mum, more creative, more focused and manage to cram everything into the tiny amounts of time there is (when thinking back, so much of the working week was based around long lunches and chats in the kitchen).
And when you spend a lot – or even any – of your time looking after small children it’s easy to not value what you do enough. Or acknowledge that you’re doing a better job than you think. Or that some days, even if the only thing you achieve is getting everyone fed and to the end of it, that’s enough. And even on those days you do a million more things than that, and it’s all these things, the emotional, nurturing and often unspoken important things, that can’t be measured or checked off a to do list.
So my children are happy and well, that’s enough. And at night when I wake with their tiny hands in mine and both of them sleeping around me, or whenever they laugh, or say a new word, or do something amazingly familiar, then that’s way, way more than enough.