Remember those days when you would pick up your bag, phone and keys – and walk straight out the front door?
Are those days really gone forever the second you have kids? We’ve all seen the Michael McIntyre sketch about how long it takes to get everyone ready, and it’s so true!
Having one kid means a big adjustment is needed in the art of house-leaving. Anymore than that and I literally don’t know how people do it.
And don’t even get me started on how people with babies manage to do the school run or get their offspring into childcare. Every single morning, when I’m still upstairs wrestling an infant into a vest at 9am, I think to myself that you’re all bloody wonder women (and vow I’ll get my act together in time for Toddler’s introduction into the education system).
When he was tiny I somehow got into a routine relatively quickly and I don’t remember ever being ALWAYS late for things (my friends may recall it differently I suppose). But f*ck me, this time round I CANNOT GET OUT OF THE HOUSE!
Toddler has always had a better social life than me, so we are out at different groups or playdates every morning. I didn’t want this to change when the Twins came along – and thought they would just have to be carted to and fro to everything Toddler did, which is how we tend to roll.
What I’d not quite envisaged was how bloody long it takes to get everyone ready in the morning. How do you Mums of four or five children do it? I take my hat off to you! I remember one morning it taking FOUR hours from me waking up to getting Toddler to his swimming lesson. FOUR HOURS, FFS? I’m going to need some serious advice from the school-run experts when my time comes or Toddler will be expelled for lateness!
Put simply, my biggest problem is the babies, and the fact there are bloody two of them. You don’t have to be Einstein to figure out everything takes twice as long. Apart from feeding them at the same time, I can’t do anything else simultaneously. Sometimes it feels like flipping Groundhog Day, burping, wiping, changing, dressing, changing again cos they’ve just shat in the clean nappy – all twice.
But the thing I didn’t seem to (and still don’t) allow for is the whole rigmarole of getting in and out of the car.
Shit. The. Bed.
I wonder whether it’s even bloody worth it most mornings – I work up a sweat practically body slamming Toddler into his seat, and then traipsing back into the house (TWICE obviously) to get a baby in a car seat. Thank God for isofix bases, that’s all I can say. Then back in again to get my ‘twin’ nappy bag, which can only be described as the size of a not-even-small suitcase, with all the crap I seem to take everywhere. More often than not, I’ve forgotten something desperately important like Toddler’s toy diplodocus or a corn on the cob from his plastic shopping basket he just HAS to hold on the car journey.
Every single day I think I can nail it in five minutes. Even getting everyone into coats/shoes/hats/blankets seems to take me longer than is humanly possible, FFS. And I’m not forgetting those (not infrequent) times when Twin One does a cheeky shit in the car seat and needs a full-on hose-down. Or Twin Two chucks up his entire bottle all over him, me and the carpet. It’s like they KNOW…
But what’s even more annoying than getting everyone in the car, is getting everyone OUT of the car the other end.
More often than not it’s taken me longer to set off than I actually spend driving. Then it starts. The ‘GET ME OUT!!” from Toddler, within seconds of me pulling into a parking space. He has to be the last to be ‘released’ from what he clearly sees as torture, or he’d run off and be knocked down instantly.
To be fair to him, the time it takes to put together a sodding double travel system complete with two babies, is even longer than five journeys in and out of the house. Don’t even get me started on f*cking carry cots. Has any baby in the history of the world EVER liked being in a carry cot?
None of mine, that’s for sure. But because we feel guilty about them being in a car seat for too long, we use them anyway.
Or at least I did, for about 6 days before I couldn’t bear the protests from Toddler anymore, and decided I needed to cut the whole car routine down from what felt like three hours to actually a nifty 17 minutes. Speedy, eh? Thank God he’s got that corn on the cob to keep him entertained.
I sometimes wonder if it’s even bloody worth it but then I think of the alternative – staying at home with three babies..
GET ME OUT!!
Tales From Mamaville