{The Ordinary Moments 14} #18 ‘The Other Side Of Parenting.’

realparenting

realparenting

Being a parent is by far the best thing I have ever done.  It is incredible, amazing, utterly life changing and my girls make me smile and laugh every single day.  But whilst being a mother brings such joy and makes the simple and ordinary things in life even better, it also is exceptionally challenging.

There are amazing days, there are good days and there are downright crappy days.  Days where you question yourself and your abilities as a parent.  Days where you feel like you are failing and where you breathe a sigh of relief when they go to sleep in the evening.

But there are also just ordinary days.  And those are the days that they don’t tell you about when you are pregnant.  You get told about the life changing moments or the moments where you want to hide under the covers and have a good cry.  But no one mentions the ordinary days.  The days where nothing remarkable happens, but where you have two small human beings to think about from the second you wake up until the second you go to sleep.  There is no where I would rather be but while it is incredible, it is exhausting.

Being a parent is about learning to be selfless.  About putting your children’s needs before your own. About letting go of the life you had before.  And often you don’t realise just how much you have changed until you are faced with a faint glimmer of the old times.

This weekend I was a bridesmaid at one of my best friend’s weddings.  Our stay ‘up North’ involved three different hotels in three different nights.  Three check in’s, lugging suitcases, buggies, two small children and other paraphernalia up the stairs.  Three check out’s carrying the same things down again just twelve hours later.  Three nights of sleeping on top of each other in cramped hotel rooms, dealing with disrupted routines, no naps and late bedtimes.

At the wedding there was not much time to sit and socialise, not much time to sip champagne and reminisce about the old times.  There were our girls to feed, to watch, to play with.  Girls who have a bedtime of 7pm and who by 9pm were tired and wanted to go to sleep.  Mr E went back to the room with them while I carried on having a few drinks and a dance with my friends.  But as I danced with my childless couple friends and a couple of my single friends too, it was a real reminder of just how different life is now.

If you had told me three and a half years ago that I would be sat on the toilet of a Premier Inn bathroom at 9pm, eating McDonalds chicken nuggets whispering to Mr E so as not to wake up our little ladies sleeping behind the closed door, I would never have been able to imagine it. (Classy!)

But these are our ordinary moments now we are parents.  This is real life parenting at it’s very best.  It’s not always plain sailing, it’s not always easy and it certainly isn’t always picture perfect memories of happy smiling families grinning cheesily at the camera.

It’s about learning as you go along and about relishing and laughing about those funny little moments that make you contemplate just how different your life has become.

And that make you realise that even though things aren’t always easy there is absolutely no where else you would rather be.


55 Comments

  • I love this photo, and I have spent countless nights playing cards by phone light under a duvet in a hotel room

  • Jenny says:

    Katie I love this. That photo makes me laugh so hard because I find myself doing this travelling ALL THE TIME. I never can afford or dont want to waste the money for an interconnecting room so I am always putting the kids in cots in the room and eating or on my laptop in the bathroom so I don’t wake them. Nice that you got to have your hubby in there too. I am usually solo as he never travels with us but separately. What a great ordinary moment indeed. They really don’t tell you about them do they. Sometime I think I don’t even give these ordinary moments credit where credit is do. I am so glad I came upon your link to do just that. See you are making me a better more grateful person so I thank you for hosting. (p.s. amazing to finally meet you today, was the highlight to my day without sounding creepy!).

  • Mummy Says says:

    Fantastic post Katie, I’ve been nodding my head to every word. They change everything don’t they, and yes, of course, for the best. I don’t think I’ve eaten chicken nuggets in the bathroom for mine yet, but anything is possible one day! Superb photo, made me smile x

  • Michelle says:

    This photo is brilliant and it’s nice to know we’re not the only ones who do this, lol! Every word is true in the post and we can relate to it. Hope you had a nice weekend xxx

  • Lauren says:

    This photo did make me giggle. You certainly are a rock n roll pair.
    When we went to a wedding 2 years ago and I did the same as Mr E, and took the boys to bed whilst my husband stayed up with his friends. It certainly was a wake up call as to what life is like a parent now :-) xx

  • I really do love this photo! Reminds me of the times I sneak away to the kitchen to snaffle down a chocolate bar. But that’s more to do with not wanting to share than the fear of waking anyone up…

    Great post though. I can 100% relate to the ordinary days. xo

  • Leilani says:

    The ordinary moments are the best ones! Life is so different as parents but I find that if I do have the occasional afternoon or evening away from my kiddos I’m always anxious to get back to them. As much as they drive me crazy, life is perfect with them in tow :)

  • So good to see that ‘the ordinary moments’ are not always the glossy images of perfection. Kudos to you for keeping it real! Lovely, honest moment. X

  • Haha love the photo, the things we parents have to do! X

  • Katrina says:

    Oh Katie, i loved reading this: & it’s very poignant to me this year. I was the first one out of all my friends to marry & have a child & sadly they don’t understand how much life changes once you’re a family unit. I adore my friends, but without my family i just feel lost-they complete me. Everything you’ve said here really rings true. xx

    • Mummy Daddy Me says:

      It is hard, and I was the same as you. It does feel strange to suddenly feel so different to your friends. x

  • Everything changes and sometimes there so much stuff to learn. I am learning. Your post is so heartwarming on a cold night.

  • Ritz says:

    I love every word of this post ! And that photo sums up the parenting :) I agree no one tells you the ordinary moments which makes who different and complete at the same time. xx

  • This is so true, it’s rarely glamorous or easy but it’s all worth it! Love this pic, really made me smile xxx

  • Emily says:

    I love this pic, it really makes me giggle! Ah, the things we do.

  • Carie says:

    Oh that made me laugh – we’ve definitely done similar things – usually a crafty bite of chocolate behind the kitchen cupboards when it’s just too near to bedtime to indulge the littlest ones and we need a smidge more energy to get through the rest of the day!

  • Anna-Marie says:

    I LOVE this! and so very true!

  • Couldn’t have put it better myself. This morning I foregoing my own health to cuddle my poorly daughter as she coughs relentlessly in my face.

  • James gibson says:

    I think every ordinary moment spent when you have children is like one big amazing one ! First time linking up !!

  • Karen says:

    This made me giggle when I saw it on Instagram. Although I can’t say I’ve ever eaten in a toilet, husband and I have had a few giggles trying to be quiet & not disturb the girls in a hotel room. It’s amazing how diff it is to be quiet & how everything is suddenly funny when your trying not to make a sound x

  • I LOVE this photo!! I totally agree with everything you’ve said too. Sometimes I love the moments where we are driving along with both the kids screaming and moaning, it makes me laugh in a ‘how different is our life now’ kind of way, not that we would ever change it of course! It can be bloody hard work though!! xx

    • Mummy Daddy Me says:

      Thanks Jess, it is incredibly hard work but like you said, we wouldn’t change it for anything. x

  • katie says:

    I shouldnt really say this is one of my favourite photos of you ever soon as you post so many gorgeous shots but it is – so so funny as we have done this many times :)
    Glad to hear you have had a lovely weekend if not incredibly tiring. We were away at a christening and it was also very hard work chasing the boys around all weekend in the absence of any garden gates, stair gates and lots of steep steps! x

  • Lisa H says:

    I absolutely love this pic, it sums up parenting so perfectly! Life can be hard with children and so much has changed, but none of us would change our little ones for anything xxx

  • Chloe says:

    I definitely know what you mean about the glimmers of your old life making you realise how much has changed. My friends are just starting to get engaged/married/etc, and we have a wedding coming up – mutual uni friends of Sam
    and I – but as usual, we are the only ones with children. It’s evenings like those that really highlight how different our lives are to all of our friends!!

    • Mummy Daddy Me says:

      It’s a really funny one, because sometimes I just feel like we have slotted into this world where we are completely different people to who we were before. And then it’s times like this that really make me realise just how much we have changed. I wouldn’t change them for anything in the world but sometimes you just want to have a dance and be Katie and Mr E rather than Mummy and Daddy! x

  • Kimberly says:

    I love your thoughts on parenting and I completely agree. Even when it is hard there is nothing I would rather be doing.

  • Ha! I hear you. I have done exactly that in the past, and whilst it wasn’t the best fun at the time, it is all just part of the story of our family now. Lovely to see you on Sunday, albeit too briefly :)

    • Mummy Daddy Me says:

      Definitely, it is part of what makes our little young family! Lovely to see you briefly too Helen. x

  • Fabulous post. We haven’t stayed in a hotel yet with Baby, but we were talking about it the other day. I can imagine us doing this. My life has changed so much in the last couple of years, but like you there is nowhere else I would rather be xx

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