Monday 3 April 2023

Things that are easier now the children are older

I am really appreciating this time of life with my older children as I struggled a lot with the baby and toddler years. I didn't like the unpredictability and the hassle that came with even the simplest tasks. I found it difficult coping with the way that my life changed overnight, and although I was happy with my new role as primary caregiver it took me a while to adapt to it. 

The children still rely on me a lot of course - I wrote recently about the things that my older children still need me for - but generally what I'm needed for these days are things that I find easier and that I can have more control over. 

I've always found the school run quite stressful, but it's much easier now that they are both at senior school. At drop off I pull up outside the school and they jump out. For pick up my main worry has always been that I'll be late or can't find a parking space, but now they come out by themselves and have their phones I know that I can just give them a quick ring and they can either wait for me at school or walk to wherever I am.

It's really nice to be able to leave them at home for periods of time. When my husband is away I can go out for a run or pop to the shops by myself. My husband and I often go out for walks together, and we have even been out for an early dinner just the two of us!

When it comes to food I'm much less stressed now about what they eat, in particular my son who has always been a fussy eater. I cook him what he likes and he can cope by himself if he's in a situation like a school trip where he has to eat what he's given. He makes his own lunch and breakfast now and my daughter is perfectly capable too, although she's a bit more reluctant. I do still make their packed lunches though, it's just so much easier for me to just get on with it, production line style!

I really appreciate the fact that our house is no longer filled with a mess of colourful plastic. We recently had a big sort out of the Lego and Playmobil and although we have more toys than we need for their age at least it is all confined to their rooms now. At one point we had toys all over the place!

We recently organised opening bank accounts for them so they now have a proper debit card and regular pocket money. They have both been really pleased with this and it has given them more independence - on Mother's Day they took themselves down to the local shop to buy my boxes of Maltesers and they can buy themselves chips at lunch.

I enjoy having proper conversations with them. We talk in the car and over dinner about things that are in the news or what is going on with their lives. I spend quite a bit of time with them both at bedtime which is their opportunity to discuss things privately with me.

Older girl in sunflower field from behind
Photo credit Gilles Seguin via Unsplash

It's not always easy of course and they both need a lot of emotional support which I do find draining at times. But I am definitely preferring this stage of life!

1 comment:

  1. Things do get easier as our children get older. I found the biggest thing was being able to leave them home alone, it makes such a difference. I don't miss all of the toys all over the place and my youngest got her own bank account a little while ago and it makes life much easier, I just transfer her the money and she gets what she wants. x


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