One of the best pieces of advice that I was given in Faith’s early days when requesting words of wisdom from those who’d had more experience of coping with three young children was to “keep it simple”.
The mum’s words seemed entirely sensible, aspirational and even potentially achievable.
In that moment though, I seemed to forget that this is one of the things we seem to find impossible to do.
Some of the things our days fill up with are often unavoidable – medical appointments for example. And September has brought the start of school and, with it, thanks to the lack of spaces in any school within vague walking distance of us, the school run involving an hour’s round trip twice a day.
But we’re also a family that like to get out and about and experience life outside our front door – leaving the chaotic mess and things in need of repair behind us for at least a few hours even if just to be even more annoyed by them on return.
And I appear to be a girl who just can’t say no. We are blessed to have many family and friends from across our different walks of life and, between all our works, children’s appointments and other commitments, it can be hard to come up with times we can actually see each other which means we usually try and accept any opportunity going, filling up our days attempting to defeat the forces of traffic, recalcitrant mini ones and time itself to fit as much as possible in one day.
If my son seems to want “to do everything now, all at the same time” then perhaps we only have our own example setting to blame.
Which led to today’s attempt to not only take some photos for a future blog post with the help of some friends and to visit some relatives but also to attend not one, not two but three parties.
Ambitious, brave or (most probably) just plain stupid, you may have guessed that we didn’t quite make it.
Despite rain causing problems at photo time, the (somewhat late) realisation of how far away the first party was (despite the lovely host having warned us) causing a truncated early visit to family that resulted in returning later in the day, an incidence of baby sick, the fact I seemed to think teleportation is factual rather than fictional leading to missing one party altogether adding a good dollop of guilt to my stress levels, the frustrations of rural roads and the ups and downs of over-tired and over-excited sugar-fuelled mini ones, we actually had a really enjoyable day – but perhaps it’s definitely time to learn to slow down a little bit.
As the (equally lovely) third party host said about their own logistical concerns – “you can’t time travel”.
And, if we bemoan the speed of time we witness in our children growing up too fast, perhaps we shouldn’t help it by keeping our foot on the accelerator too.
But have I really learnt my lesson? Given that this is my first post in the blogging challenge #Blogtober17 (run by www.hexmumblog.com) which aims to follow prompts to post once a day throughout October, probably not. But, even if I don’t quite make it, hopefully I’ll have some fun along the way.
So now you know (if you didn’t before) that one of the things I find difficult in life is to “keep it simple” as much as I would like to. That’s not exactly “all about me”, today’s #Blogtober17 post prompt, but it probably does inform a lot of other aspects of my life.
If you do have any tips on how to keep it simple, please leave them in the comments below!