Saturday, 9 August 2008

Being a parent should be an olympic sport. Well at the very least we should get a medal.

It's raining. Again. Despite being August. Sigh. I've had a long week. It's involved trying to stay calm with my ever-increasingly hyper children. And now it's the weekend. All I want to do is snuggle on the sofa and watch the Olympics. It's the only time I watch sport, so I feel that vegging in front of a TV once every four years isn't too much to ask.

The last time the Olympics were on, my eldest son was only about 5 months old and beastie 2 definitely hadn't been thought about. Back then, I didn't work. All I had to do was figure out how to stop a small, puking baby from crying all day long. I didn't even have to leave the house or get out of my jammies. So I got to watch lots of the Games at my leisure. How things have changed...

After lunch today I put the tv on to watch the swimming. Immediately there were demands for 'our tv' i.e. Cbeebies. I said no and tried to explain the importance of the Olympic Games. I'm afraid it was pearls before swine. So I took it down several notches and pointed out how the swimmer's goggles and bathing caps were similar to theirs, which caused a flutter of interest. I then tried to explain the different strokes that were appearing in the 400 metre medley. I was told to be quiet by older son because 'I know what they're doing, stop telling me.' So I gave up trying to educate them and just attempted to watch in peace.

That failed too.

My children wanted to play tennis. Outside. Right now. In the rain. I said they were welcome to but that I wouldn't be joining them and that they needed to wear raincoats. They refused on the raincoat point, so I sent them out into the downpour and said to crack on. Approximately 30 seconds later they were back dripping water all over the house saying: 'We've finished playing tennis.' Promptly followed by: 'We're bored.' And, 'We're hungry.' And 'Can we have a biscuit?'

I gave up watching and said I'd look on my computer to see what we can do this afternoon (and actually all I'm doing is writing this.)

Right at this moment they are watching the boxing. Physical violence is something they heartily enjoy. They've chosen who's backing the guy in red and who's got the blue. There are lots of shouts of 'Knock him down. Knock him down.' I feel as a responsible adult I should step in and explain that this is actually a sport and not something we do on a rainy day because we're bored. But that would mean having to make up my mind about what we're going to do this afternoon.

We could go to a softplay place, but the mere thought of a gazillion children bored out of their tiny minds being unleashed into ball pools filled with wee is enough to make me want to play tennis outside in the rain.

Too late. They've found me. And are now showing me their newly discovered boxing skills. And someone's crying. I need to intervene. Must go.

But before I do, I just want to make the point that no matter how hard those olympic athletes train, nothing will ever prepare them for the challenges they'll face when they become parents. And they'll have to deal with the fact that they'll never get a medal for their pains either. Sigh.


Anonymous said...

very true. I just put my two girls to bed one blissful hour ago.

My husband is a firefighter, and works three fire departments. Therefore he is gone sometimes 3-4days at a time.

I am still trying to figure out how I can market the socially accepted "part-time mom" job. I am such a better mom when I have time AWAY from my strange, but true.

Lazy Housewife said...

I told my kids that Cbeebies isnt on whilst the olympics is on! As they accept everything I say, they just disappeared off to play "baby lions attack the trainset"