It’s a strange place to be and definitely one that has taken me a while to get used to.

 Life without little littles. 

It was a throwaway comment from my sister on Friday night that really started me thinking, I was parking up the car in a pretty tight spot and I asked the kids and hubby to get out so I could really tuck it in without having to worry about opening doors etc. As I was parking my sister said “you know what? You are  so lucky! You can just tell them to stand there and they do!” At 16months and 6 years, my nephews are still little and super busy and my sister is still deeply ensconced “in the trenches” . Sleepless nights, dirty nappies, endless days on the hamster wheel of life with littles.  And she’s right!!  I really am lucky and I guess I do take my easier life for granted a little, but it’s not like I skipped all of the (literal) poop to get here, I just survived it! 

After giving birth to my first child at the age of 17 and a half (we’ll put a pin in the half and some day I’ll tell you about my hubbys take on my need to always point out the half)  I have literally spent my entire adult life looking after little ones. Now my eldest is almost 18 and my youngest child is ten (and a half lol) and we are very much sliding into the golden years of raising our children. It’s something I have struggled with to be honest, I genuinely didn’t think I would ever be ready to give up on the baby years, the tiny hands to hold , the yummy chub and giggles associated with those teeny tinies. 

However, as I have come to learn, with everything in life there is always a pay off! 

I have traded gorgeous pastel (instagrammable) children’s bedrooms ,floral bedding with ballet pictures on the wall , beautiful white furniture and a gorgeous wooden kitchen, or boyish pirate themed bedrooms with treasure map walls and lego everywhere you look , for absolute health hazard pits of despair. I’ve gone from a daily quick , late afternoon tidy round whilst laying out tiny pyjamas for warm bodies straight out of the bath – to a weekly yelling match with threats of bin bags and throwing away anything lying on the floor!! Also teenagers either refuse to shower completely or decide to shower and use every single towel in the house!! There is no in between. Don’t say I didn’t warn you! These are definitely the things that bring out my worst motherly ugliness.

Breathless stories, lisps and mispronounced words will be on my forever miss list. The only trade off for these are (if you are really lucky) hearing their wishes and dreams, worries and needs. Really I’m just glad when they still want to actually speak to me. 

Recently our weekends have been shaping up pretty nicely, on one of the days we go for a nice long stroll and end up somewhere (usually a pub!) for a nice cool drink and some well deserved down time. I’m usually driving to get to wherever we are walking, so this isn’t even about alcohol! Lol. Just the enjoyment of sitting in a grown up atmosphere (not soft play!!) where our girly is happy to chat with us or sit quietly and happily amuse herself while we chat.  Of course we are also walking the tightrope of becoming used to being mostly a family of three for these trips, the eldest is usually working or sitting happily amusing himself in an adult atmosphere with his friends!!  

It may not be as easy to blog about your children as they become older, they really want their stories to remain their own and now they have a bigger online presence, I can’t get away with sharing quite as much! But the upside is that online presence makes their scrummy faces pop up in my instafeed , or cute wee comments pop up when I am least expecting them. Also once they can read and write, you get cute messages left around for you 🙂

One definite perk of having older children is sleep, oh my do I love my sleep!!! And although I treasured every single one of those snugly , milky, precious night feeds full of cuddles that I had with my babies, I feel very lucky to know that now, most nights when I go to bed I will get to stay there until morning!  I guess that will last until they both  start rolling in very late (or early) from their nights out….give and take.

So maybe I am still in the parenting trenches, maybe we never really escape! Lord knows I still call on my parents to help me often enough! Maybe we just move ever closer to the light at the end of the tunnel! ❤️