There are some days where we just have to stay in. Yep, on some days the house does need a good clean, on some days I have a delivery coming or some/most days the weather is yet again trying to flood us all so there just seems no point in attempting to leave the house with a wriggly toddler who is now almost as fast as Usain Bolt!
These days are rarely fun. Why can kids not just be at home and play with their millions of toys, entertain themselves, watch Ben and Holly on repeat and just be happy?! If I go to somebody else’s home he is fine, he happily plays and investigates each room. In our house, he behaves as though I have locked him up for the last 2 years and he’s never been able to escape!
Things around the house suddenly start to become a target for destruction. The other day he was nice and quiet… stupid Mummy, thinking he was happily playing… he was using his fishing net to ‘fish’ (dig up and ruin) his strawberry plants that we have been growing from seeds. Not entirely sure why I bother sometimes.
Then comes the times when all he wants to do is ‘help’ Mummy. I try and get him to dust but as soon as my back is turned he’s picking up the polish and trying to spray it on everything. He want’s to help bath the dog but really he wants to soak us all with the shower head. He tries to help with the hoovering but is only doing one spot on the floor over and over again and when I try and intervene I get screamed at and an almighty strop erupts!! He is eager to help change the bed covers, but really he just wants to jump on the bed, throw the pillows on the floor and tell me no each time I try and get the new covers on. Making all the chores take twice as long and explains exactly why they now last days instead of one afternoon.
I put a film on, I let him pick and usually, it’s the balloons (Up). He’s happy as long as I am sat with him getting a running commentary during every scene. If I try and walk away, even sneak off, I get told to come back. If I do escape unnoticed it doesn’t take long for him to find me and try ‘helping out’ again.
At lunch, I put something on TV for me, just for this once, just so I feel like I am actually in the real world for maybe half an hour and not stuck in a parallel universe where only cartoon characters exist. He cries like a newborn baby. I really thought he had hurt himself somewhere… nope, it’s because he doesn’t like ‘people’ (on the telly) he likes Ben and Holly… God someone give me strength. Ben and Holly goes back on so I get on the laptop. I get told off for being on the ‘tap-tap’ and then he wants to look at photos of himself instead.
Oh, and is it just mine or do all children behave like they are starving when they are stuck at home? When we are out he never tells me he is hungry, yet when we are home he becomes a bottomless pit asking repeatedly to go to the kitchen because he’s ‘bit hungry’ as he likes to put it. I swear the security guard in Sainsbury’s spots me and thinks oh it’s her again!!
Honestly Jake is not an overly stroppy child but one morning of staying in and I counted 6 meltdowns!!! 6 times of noooooo, throwing himself on the floor, fake tears and all over the teeniest things. I mean they don’t last long because, let’s face it, he’s a boy and his attention span is about the same as a goldfish, but how come he doesn’t throw himself down in public? He just saves it all up for Mummy to be the only one in the audience… lucky Mummy eh!
You may read this and think awww that’s sweet he just wants to be with his Mum and yes there are times when it is nice, but the times when you just need a bit of quiet, you need to get those few jobs done without turning around to find a bomb has gone off in the living room, adding to those jobs, it can all become very intense. It is the only word I can find to use and I think it sums up not only how I feel, but how he is feeling and then in turn how the house then feels. It’s like the house turns into a pressure cooker and as the pressure increases – via the lil man – it’s only a certain amount of time until Mummy will blow!!! On days like these, it feels like every wall is slowly creeping in on me and I cannot escape. I am pretty sure you all feel this at some point and it is the main reason I like to get out most days and burn off that extra energy my son seems to have. Please tell me I’m not the only one?!!
My top tips?
- Drink your tea whilst it’s hot, even if this means you have to hide in the kitchen pretending you are washing up – he’s not interested in helping with washing up, funny that.
- Breath slowly through the stressful times, sometimes into a pillow and let out a scream with it.
- Make an activity station and just hope and pray it keeps them occupied long enough just to get a couple of jobs done.
- If it’s nice just give them water. My son is obsessed! Watering cans, a washing up bowl, plastic tea cups and a teapot… just watch when they bring it in saying they have made you a ‘tea’!
- Hand them over to a family member and be clever and pick a good day like I do on a Friday.
Good luck parents, we are all in this together and always remember that.