Days out are fucking hard. There, I said it.
You could take one look at my blog and assume we are some sort of super parents when it comes to days out. I’ve had the messages: “how do you do it?”… “I don’t know how you manage them all”, “and you don’t drive, wow!”, “I can’t even get out of the house most days let alone have days out almost every day”, “you do so much in a week, I just can’t believe it!” Why Family Days Out Suck
Well, let me tell you something: we are far from perfect. And family days out suck. I’m being honest… they do. The are filled with tantrums, tears, over tired and over stimulated toddlers, they’re tiring and hard. I’ve been finding it really difficult to take mylp toddler on a day out lately. And yet I’ve been feeling like… “but I have this blog about days out, so if I’m in the house and miserable, I’m being a little bit of a hypocrite, no?!
Yet… that attitude is exactly might be why I’ve been feeling over whelmed, stressed and anxious recently. Am I at a point where I realised I was just expecting too much of myself and things have changed? Eric isn’t a baby anymore, he’s a toddler, and with that everything is different, not just him but our lives. it is not as easy as just getting up in the morning and out of the house. It’s not easy at all to juggle a toddler, bags and public transport. It’s not easy to deal with toddler struggles and tantrums in public, let alone at a busy family attraction with a hundred other parents judging you. It’s almost impossible to be on time and reliable with anything. Family days out suck!
Yesterday, I took Eric out to play. We just went to a local park and farm (Sheffield manor lodge) for some outdoor play, what he loves the most. I started to take some video footage because I had expectations that I -might- vlog the day out, even if I didn’t I was hoping to share some videos of it just on my Facebook page to share what had done. I expected this: a day full of laughs, giggles, bonding, jumping in puddles, having fun on the play areas, smiles down at the farm enjoying meeting the animals, playing, a lovely picnic together, alone time just me and him.
In reality? A morning of screaming (at each other), tempers lost, tears, guilt, stress, anxiety and the fear that I couldn’t parent anymore. I genuinely, at one point, told myself that was it: “no more days out on my own because I can’t cope; he’s just never happy!”. It might sound dramatic… but it’s true. Please, tell me, you’ve been in the same situation?!
At the bottom of my heart I know that it isn’t his fault. He is overwhelmed, emotional, he’s learning, he’s growing, god damnit he’s a toddler and this is perfectly normal. And I love him with all my heart. We do have some amazing days out, some lovely times, but honestly, more than often, it’s just stressful.
So… when we were out yesterday, (after the morning from hell at the park where we almost left), things got better once we had both calmed down (and both of us cried) and I had a thought. I just need to stop expecting so much of us. Toddlers are hard. Days out are hard. That’s life. I think the reason why it’s been so hard lately is not just Eric growing etc and having needs that change every 5 minutes, but maybe because I put too much pressure on myself. So I turned on the camera and I talked; which I’ve never done before. All my vlogs so far I don’t show myself or speak on them, I’m far too shy for that, but I really needed to talk to someone at that time and I was alone only with a toddler for company.
Do you agree? Am I just alone in this?!
To make some light of the situation, I asked some experienced parents what they thought. And I had to laugh!
What do you struggle with the most?
Thank you for watching/reading – this is a little bit different than usual; a little more personal, so thanks for listening. 🙂