Sunday, February 14, 2010

Over scheduled kids or over scheduled mum?

Apologies to all my readers who are totally over my public processing of the start to a new school year!  Never fear - I will get back into the rhythm of life soon and will hopefully have other ideas in my head!

I realised today that I've become one of those mothers who carts children around to different activities all week.  I've become a soccer mum - without the soccer part.  I've always been wary of over scheduling my kids because I know they need time to hang out at home and just relax and play.

So I've been feeling bad about all that my kids are doing.  Until I suddenly thought about it and realised that individually they aren't doing heaps (enough, but not heaps).  However, when you start multiplying their activities by five children, it is me that has become over scheduled!  I am obsessed with how I'm going to fit it all into a day.  My brain can't seem to cope with thinking much past a day at a time.  Don't ask me about Thursday on Monday - I would not have a clue!  And certainly don't ask me on Sunday how my week was - that information has been long deleted to make room for the next lot of stuff.  Even on Monday morning, asking about my weekend can be a push!

Oh, and then I'm trying to study, be married, have some friends, go to church, do exercise, brush teeth, help at school and occasionally wash and sleep.  Is the answer to give up and just collapse at the feet of this schedule?  Give up on my personal hygiene?!  Just move into the Tarago?!

How did I get here?  And how big can my capacity get?  Only the next few years will tell ...

5 comments:

Peter Sholl said...

I feel the same way, and I've only got three. But I've realised (for good or for bad) that I'm content with having my sense of achievement closely (but not exclusively) wrapped up in my care of my kids. The weak part of my contentment is that getting them to events, putting the next meal on the table, taking them to the doctor and supporting their educational needs is not the sum total of what they need to be cared for well. I'm feeling like I'm too busy (with their activities) to do enough of the personal, relational nuturing that I think is necessary.

An ongoing struggle!

Sarah

Jenny said...

Thanks for your honesty Sarah. It's true about needing to have room in our lives to be emotionally available too. I've realised that even just 20 minutes after dinner to just sit and hang out with the kids in the lounge room before they go to bed can make a big difference. Often it is by then that bits of information about their days come out.

simone godde said...

I thank God for your refreshing honesty, my 4 kids have no extracirricular activities after dabbling last year & burning out.. I also can relate to focusing one day at a time & on brain dumping on previous days wow you make me feel so normal!!

Jenny said...

Hey Simone - great to have you on board! Glad my ramblings (which is what they feel like to me!) are refreshing for you.

Julie-anne said...

I haven't met you Jenny but love catching up with your husband at senior staff things. We have 4 kids but I quite like having lots of things on because each time I take 1 kid to something I get a 1 on 1 chance to catch up with them each day. They all have 5 activities each to get to each week. I also try and make it special as in each kid who has a sat 830 match we have McDonalds breakfast each time on the way (it means I get a coffee as well :)). I get there early for footy and we have a kick together (I'm getting pretty good now!!)