I have amazing children who are now almost grown. I started this blog because I found that although I was working part time, I finally had time to do something else. My parenting days are far from over but my teenagers just don’t physically need me as much and it happened quite suddenly. It crept up on me when I found myself alone one Saturday afternoon enjoying a cup of tea and realised that I didn’t need to be anywhere! It got me thinking about all the things that used to drive me nuts that I was actually now missing. It’s as if my “parenting routines comfort blanket” has been removed and I am now thinking about how I should replace it.
- Being up early
Oh how I craved a lie-in when the children were tiny! My hubbie and I used to try to take turns having that extra hour in bed at the weekends but it often never worked out that way. The baby would need feeding or we would take the children swimming early to fit in with naps. Having any extra time to sleep became a bit of an obsession! But now we have teenagers who think sleeping is a national sport I just don’t seem to need to lie in! I wake up naturally at 7.30am on a Saturday and although it’s great to be able to take a cup of tea back to bed, the children are asleep for half the day! If we plan to do anything it has to be after lunch really. I miss the early morning snuggles reading that book over and over… There, I said it!
- Children’s TV
This is going to sound bonkers but I miss CBeebies with Tinky Winky, Iggle Piggle and Peppa Pig. I even miss the theme tunes! In my job as a teacher I was always knowledgable with what the children liked when I had small children at home. “Oh yes I did see that episode when Daddy Pig slept outside in the car!” Now, I don’t have a clue and think the fact kids watch some Japanese woman opening Lego on YouTube slightly disturbing! I certainly don’t miss iCarly or some of those tween programmes that my children used to watch but I do miss Good luck Charlie. Charlie was just too cute! It’s now Ex on the beach, Prison Break or Indian cricket (sorry, not for me).
- Buying Children’s clothes
It’s such a chore shopping with babies and young children isn’t it but at least they don’t have a say in what you buy. If you want them to wear that cute piglet suit then they will. If you want to dress them in an old-fashioned sailor suit then so be it! Tweens and teens have a very definite idea of what they like and dislike. I remember trying to persuade my son that shirts that he had been happily wearing for the past 3 years, were smart but no, he just wouldn’t wear one. My children have a monthly allowance for clothes now that we gave them when they turned 14. It saves the aggro to be honest and if they want that Supreme T-shirt that costs £60, then they have to save for it. But, I miss the cute children’s clothes you can buy and having a say on what they wear.
- Going anywhere!
I’m not sure if this is just my children but I miss going on day trips. If I ask my two what they would like to do during the holidays, the only thing we agree on is to go to the cinema or to London. Well, going to London for a day or longer is not really a day trip for us because we would have to find someone to check on the dog. It’s also an expensive day out as we would go on the train and they want to shop! Days out in the ‘Big Smoke’ are therefore, not going to happen often. They also don’t mind being driven to see friends of course but that doesn’t include me or Hubbie! It may also be because I have a girl and a boy so my son may want to go ice skating for example but my daughter would want to go out for a meal. But I miss farm parks and soft play (For little kids). I miss going to the beach (too much sand apparently) or walking in a nearby beauty spot (too cold/wet/boring). Often, we just don’t go anywhere or we eat out. They then complain that they are bored! Hohum.
- Having evenings “off”
I love having my teenagers watching TV with me (especially CSI or Americas Next Top Model) but sometimes I would like an evening “off”. I would like to watch what I want to watch and not have to fight to watch Broadchurch or Gardeners World! With small children they are, hopefully, asleep by 8pm so you can relax and spend some quality time with your hubbie. Well I miss that. Often, my teens are still up when we go to bed.
So there you have it. I love my teens but I miss my babies. Perhaps it’s nostalgia that protects us from the hard times we had with young children? There are many times that I remember feeling tired, overwhelmed and fed up but I still miss it. So, enjoy the times that make you feel tired, over whelmed or fed up because those times don’t last. In fact, they are over in a blink of an eye and then you’ll be looking at the next stage in your life whether you like it or not.
OH THE JOYS OF LIVING IN THE OLD HOUSE IN THE SHIRES.