Friday, 19 June 2015

Parenting--Embrace the inconvenience!

It's 5 o'clock. Your 3 kids (specifically 2 and a baby) are shuffling about at the door getting ready to go outside. You are in the kitchen over a chopping board with bloodied pork fingers knowing, the way a mom does, that it's T minus 2 minutes to meltdown. Kid 1 and Kid 2 are getting their shoes and jackets on and have asked to go out front to ride bikes. Kid 3 (baby) is rearranging shoes and repeating “O'side. O'side!” waiting for the moment where one of the big kids opens the door so she can make a break for it. You hear the door open and inwardly cringe hoping against hope that Kid 1 and Kid 2 will manage to get out without Kid 3 and without Kid 3 getting her fingers pinched in the door. Mercifully, this transpires, but, as predicted Kid 3 responds with her best blood-curdling-how-dare-they screaming protest. You abandon the pork, wash your hands, scoop up Kid 3 who swats at you and paws to get “O'side!!! O'SIDE!!” You give her a poorly received cuddle and spend some time getting her settled into a stacking toy activity, and resume pork-chopping. But. WAIT!! You hear the door open...Kid 2 has forgotten her helmet which she quickly grabs before running back out, slamming the door behind her, this time narrowly missing those pursuing little fingers by a hair, and...
The Process starts all over again...WAAAA! O'SIDE!! abandon chopping, wash hands, scoop up baby, and on and on and on...

Sometime later my husband returns home from work to a less-than-contented baby, a couple scraped knees, a frazzled me, and a still-not-cooking supper, and, as happen all too often lately, I launch into a speech about how 'frustrated' I am, how I 'just can't get anything done', and 'how would he like it if he was trying to do X and was interrupted 7000 times to stop a fight, answer a question, change a diaper, repeat an instruction, tend to a crier, repeat an instruction, get a drink, perform reconstructive surgery on today's crafted minion, get a drink, reach this, repeat instruction yet again, and rescue Child 3 from dangerous climbing destination AGAIN', and on and on and on... It's enough to do your head in sometimes, well, most of the time.

And then my mind goes down the road where I think if I could just chop the f&#king pork in one session, without having to stop to wash my hands three times, I would have more time to do all the other things and more time to read and cuddle Kid 3, and a little more patience when tending to homework with Kid 1 and Kid 2, and more time to collect my thoughts before the next on and on and on...
And then my husband says “Well, actually, do you know how many times my phone rang while I was trying to do X today? To which I respond...”Well, THAT is your job, or a least part of it, and it is not my fault if you can't multi-task, and do you know what would happen to this house if I couldn't do my job WHILE talking on the phone...” And on and on and on...

but, seriously, STOP!!! STOP this crazy cycle. You know what? Somewhere in this domestic play-by-play is the answer.

THAT is my job!!! All that inconvenience? Well it's not inconvenience at all. It's not an interruption to the job, it IS the job. And, until I accept that, I will continue right on feeling this frustration. My solution??? EMBRACE THE INCONVENIENCE!

Because, let's face it, without all of those 'inconveniences', I wouldn't have this job at all. I'm pretty certain that I wouldn't have chosen staffing a tranquil house, making oatmeal cookies, chopping pork, and making dinosaur dioramas as my career path if it weren't for the 3 delightful inconveniencers that I have accrued over the last 6 six years. Besides, where is the challenge in, say, making a pizza for supper? I could probably have done that when I was 12. But, making a pizza with a screaming baby, a toddler on the table with a bucket of flour and a measuring cup, wielding a knife with 30 unpredictable fingers, while talking on the phone...??? Now THAT'S a challenge!! And you know what? I love my job! I love that no two days are the same, I love the people I work with, I am my own boss (I think?), the rewards are second-to-none, and on and on and on...


Now I am going to put this pen down one final time (I'll venture a guess that it was abandoned no less that 30 times during the writing of this article), but when I do, and life (31) resumes its pattern of task, interruption, interruption (32), task, inconvenience, inconvenience, task, I vow to proceed with that equation turned on its head...Isn't it inconvenient that I have to make supper AGAIN instead of playing peekaboo with Kid 3? Or, Damn this sweeping thing, cutting into my minion repair surgery! (33), “Pile of laundry over there? You will just have to stop your whining and WAIT until Kid 1 has his scrape tended to.” And maybe, with a little luck, it will be a slightly cheerier me carrying on and on and on.