Monday, April 19, 2010

rest required

I can't blog. My son is doing nothing particularly amusing and I am knackered and stressed and tired of trying to be funny. I'd throw in the towel but every time I try I find myself a few weeks later back at the coal face squeezing out another post about trains or shoes or the cat's breath because I can't help myself. That and my Mum would worry.

There is, in short, no content on this blog. Not that that makes much of a difference to previous weeks, I suppose; I guess I'm just being slightly more honest. Our days pretty much steam into one another at the moment.

I'm finding the night time routine particularly wearing. From the moment I turn off my computer at around 5:30 and go and pick him up from nursery, the pattern of the day is pretty much set until 9 when the frog and I collapse with our dinner. Three and a half immovable, immutable hours are gone out of every waking day. It's like Groundhog Day in miniature; the alarm pops up on my desktop and off we go... I throw in variation because if I didn't it would be so easy for us to have 365 identical evenings.

I may have said this before, but a couple of summers ago I was standing in the park while Charlie amused himself crawling around and I heard a bunch of Mums talking; one of them confessed to the others that she started obsessing over dinner from the moment she woke up every day. At the time I didn't understand but I think I do now to some extent.

It gets relentless, this feeding and cleaning and playing trains and putting to bed business and it's worse because kids resist; they don't want to get on the bedtime travellator, they want to play. Take a kid away from his game and he might cry but within 5 minutes he'll have found something else to play with. Put a kid into an empty room and he will find a way to play. It's wonderful and fabulous and amazing and blah blah blah - and it's exhausting. Sometimes it's just so much easier to say 'fuck dinner and work this evening, let's just play' and on those days the frog comes home around 8 and Charlie and I are lounging around playing mario kart or hide and seek or we're in the garden with the hose. Some days, even, we'll play and play and play and then I'll run a huge bath and we'll both get in and then get into our jammies. Once in a blue moon we'll even get into the big bed with some books and fall asleep. It's kind of a primal thing, this play/sleep business and we are so far removed from it as adults that we pfaff around writing blogs when we should be sleeping and muck about working when we should be spending time playing and then moan inwardly about how exhausted and overworked we are.

Maybe this is what midlife crisis feels like; this urge to get back to play. Maybe that's what's going on. Maybe it's nothing to do with the blog.

Pants.

OK. Sign me up for a red sports car. And a parking spot at the train museum.

27 comments:

Lisa @ Boondock Ramblings said...

This all sounds quite familiar. Last week I had no free time. My kid would not sleep...he didn't want to do anything I wanted to do...like go to bed. RIght now he is watching cartoons on one half of the screen and I am blogging -- just to have some freaking free time to myself "free time" with a toddler next to me saying, "Not that Batman! The new one!" Then, not that Batman! The other one!" YouTube is a wonderful thing, until you choose the wrong dang Batman!

MichellSommerville0202 said...

It's great!!.............................................

Potty Mummy said...

I think - and I know it won't help, because if you're anything like me you probably won't have much of a local support structure - that you need some time off. As in, time not doing any of those things - even if it's just an evening at the cinema.

Variety is the spice of life, after all.

Or, you could just try drinking white instead of red, for a change, or milk chocolate instead dark - at least neither of things require a babysitter...

Sphinx said...

I know the feeling so well - AND I obsess over dinner from the time I wake up! At the moment I can't even cajole my grandson into eating (he's cutting his molars) and not eating takes twice as long as eating. And he is totally obsessed with cars - we have to go and look at mine at least three times a day, and preferably sit in it and push all the buttons, and turn the radio up really loud.
And, as you say, it's fabulous and wonderful and the expression on his little face as he learns and plays and laughs is breathtaking and wonderous.
But life IS tiring and mundane and repetitive. And tomorrow looks like being the same.

Sphinx said...

... and for someone who 'can't blog', you did a pretty good job on this one!

That's Not My Age said...

I think you should keep on blurting - it's good to get the notes inside your head out there - just don't start wearing leather trousers!

PS didn't know about the Transport Museum membership, so thanks. We're due a visit, haven't been for years.

Sparx said...

Lisa - I've not tried the split-screen idea... might have to so he can play 'Chuggington' or watch the tram film while I go bug-eyed and brain twisted trying to do it all at once...

Potty - time off... not possible at the moment sadly but very much required...

Michelle - Thanks!!................................. wha?

Sphinx - you've made me feel a bit better in a sort of a 'it's not just me' way... thanks for that... I sympathise about the car, we've been there too...

TNMA - no no no, the leather trousers went out years ago and aren't coming back...

Heather said...

oh god, I get this. I feel this way so often. like life is just one long monotonous recycle of the same day over and over.

I would offer some advice but right now I don't have any. Sorry, this isn't a very helpful comment.

Sparx said...

Heather - that's ok, it wasn't a helpful post. Thanks for the empathy though, every little helps...

DJ Kirkby said...

OMG. you are SUCH a good mother. Tonight I'm going to play with N3S. Thanks. xo

1 husband, 2 kids (and lots of books) said...

this is so true, sometimes I start working out how many more days of sameness are left before we can feasibly hope for change... but it's too depressing and I stop! You are so right about the play too, it's just the guilt about playing I need to sort out.

Sparx said...

DJ - no, just average I expect...

1 husband 2 kids (is that 3 kids?!) Don't have guilt about playing, play is required. I have guilt because secretly I don't really enjoy playing trains... just putting together the track...

cactus petunia said...

Wow. I'm with ya all the way, and I don't even have a three year old...the days just all stream together when you're working your tail off trying to keep the mortgage paid and the fridge stocked.

Hang in there, and keep on posting!

Sparx said...

Cactus - thanks hon. Life is hard sometimes, hey?

darth sardonic said...

i went through very similar sorts of things when i became a stay-home dad. my solution was to drink 12 dr peppers a day, sit in front of the tv with my kid for hours on end, and gain 50 pounds. none of which i would recommend to my worst enemy.

Q said...

Sparx, I love this post. I love your humour and observations re: spud too, but this is so honest and candid and I can feel it in my bones...despite the fact I'm not a mum. I feel this way too, working everyday, dragging my ass to the weekends, feeling somewhat guilty about "play", or that I need to "deserve it" first by doing something onerous. This is a good reminder that play IS necessary--even adult lions play, Lord knows my adult cats do. It isn't a "treat". And play IS child's work. It's what they do to learn about life. I'm not surprised you're feeling the way you do given you have the most important job on the planet. And it sounds like you are doing a spectacular job...

Sparx said...

Darth - my sin is diet coke... up until recently I thought I might be happy as a stay-at-home Mum but I realise now I would probably go mad.

Q - thank you so much for those kind words, and you're right, any sort of life can start feeling the same after a while... We all need to play.

邦雄 said...

I love readding, and thanks for your artical.........................................

Shopgirl said...

I don't think it's just parents who get into a Groundhog Day - esque routine! I feel it creeping up on me slowly until I barely realise it's happened. And that's when I know it's time for a change!

Hope you're well :) xx

Sparx said...

Shopgirl - exactly, time for a change! However, save keeping my boy up until all hours and ditching the bed-time routine I just see this going on for years and years and years...

Anna Colette said...

Poor you, sounds exhausting.

I agree that some evenings it's best to just play and stuff the bedtime routine. Especially on light, summer evenings.

I've tagged you over at mine: http://www.partmummypartme.blogspot.com/

Hope that inspires you, I really enjoyed writing my list! xx

More than Just a Mother said...

It's completely relentless, isn't it? You definitely need a break - do you fancy swapping children for a week? By the time you've finished with my pygmies you'll be so glad to get back to yours...

lady macleod said...

Go forth and play say I!

Sparx said...

Anna Collette thanks! I've not popped by in a while and will do.

More than - er... thanks, but that's ok, I'll stick with just the one. I can't imagine how it must be with 'more than' that!

Lady M - and so I will - you too!

Gringa-n-Mexico said...

LOL Sparx, it sounds a lot less like a midlife crisis than you just being a GREAT Mom! Silly lady you're giving Charlie extra love and attention and MEMORIES and beating yourself up about it. How about a damn pat on the back for yourself instead?

Aaaaaaaaaaand I would like to comiserate with the whole crazy schedule thing though. We've seemed to have found our own rut these days - but the damn baby book calls it a "routine" and says it's a GOOD thing. Screw the baby book I think. I DO obsess about cooking! And what she's going to wear and when - how is that important in any way??

PANTS is right YO!

Luschka (Diary of a First Child) said...

I guess we all go through these phases? Maybe we need it in order to push ourselves further. I guess I'll find out soon enough :)

Belgravia wife - sort of said...

Hi I think Groundhog Day is about right. We have just come back from a holiday and I confess I woke up most mornings thinking about what they were going to wear and eat - the weather s all over the place and I love cooking nice food for my three so have trouble letting them loose in rubbish restaurants !

I think it's a case of expectations - someone somewhere said it was easy, fun, stimulating, rewarding etc which of course it is. If we wake up expecting the day to be immeasurably dull and bland the Gods can only surprise us right ? Anyway that's my take on it but I am one of life's absurd optimists. Keep playing & sod the washing for a bit xx