I have been swimming a lot with the kids over the Easter holidays. Some days are easier than others. Last Wednesday was interesting.
It is 9am and my husband is working from home. It feels like the kids have been up for hours. He tells me that I must leave the house immediately. Our wee people are already climbing the walls and he can get absolutely nothing done. He is so busy, we simply have to go. Can I not attempt a coffee first and reply to a few WhatsApp messages? I also REALLY need to book the car in for a MOT. Fine. I throw our swimming clothes in a bag, towels, nappies, wipes, snacks (have you heard the term ‘shivery bite’ in reference to a post swim snack? my Mum used it with my brothers and I and it’s a total keeper). My husband is literally DESPERATE for us to leave. He has projects on. Do I not understand? I feel a little jealous of his projects as he sits down to a warm cup of tea at his desk. Packing up and leaving the house with two kids is stressful.
We get to the gym. It is packed. I take the kids to softplay first – maybe I can have that coffee after all as I watch them have fun. No time to go and order the coffee. There is a wee guy who has taken a liking to our little Cheeky Charlie. Bonnie is kicking off as she is jealous that her 1 year old brother is stealing the limelight. I better stick around in case she turns into a diva and punches someone. I had packed a book with me that I am dying to finish but now realise it’s really not cool to let a 1 year old and a 3 year old loose together in the ‘big kids’ zone.
After about 30 minutes Bonnie has had enough of watching everyone fuss over ‘how cute her wee brother is’ and is ready to hit the pool. Charlie has other ideas and does a Usain Bolt in the opposite direction. We finally make it along to the family changing rooms. As I help Bonnie get dressed, Cheeky continues to run for the nappy bin – he is desperate to get his hands dirty. The boy is always attracted to danger or sheer mankiness. After a lot of wriggling I get him dressed. Happy days and relax: the Kids are ready to rock. Floats, arm bands, towels at the ready. Oh crap where is my costume? I had two in my hands when I was throwing stuff in the bag – a red one and a black one. Where are they? The hubs was banging on and on at me to hurry. Could I have put them down somewhere? Bonnie is now desperate to hit the pool ‘hurry Mummy please’. Charlie has had enough and wants out of the enclosed cubicle. The boy is ready to leave his cheeky mark and cause havoc.
I need to think quickly. I open the door and see a cleaner. Great. I ask her if they sell swimming costumes to which she replies no. I am not sure if she speaks English. She seems confused. Smart. I am sure I saw some at the entrance but that is quite far away. That wee voice again ‘hurry Mummy please, please’. Sod it. I will wrap myself in a towel and we will just go in the wee baby pool. I have no shame.
The baby pool is packed. I explain to all the parents that I forgot my consume. They are all very understanding. I feel like a bit of a clown as I chase wee Charlie about the pool with a soaking wet towel wrapped around me. I am a desperate Mum and hey I will take feeling like a clown over having to get two very dissapointed little faces dressed again. Taking kids swimming is lovely but the changing room part is a bit of a faff. I am not ready to face it again.
Great – we survived 30 minutes in the kids pool. The drying and changing process is even more of a faff on this occasion with 2 small kids towels to share between the 3 of us. Keep calm and carry on. At least I didn’t forget the shivery bite which is allowing me the luxury to get dressed with both hands.
I then have the fun task of getting the kids past soft play and the cafe without any tantrums. I just want to get home. I am a little traumatised from the towel incident. I am walking along the corridor carrying a large bag, Charlie and Bonnie (she fell and hurt her knee so refused to walk). I get a laugh from one of the personal trainers who comments he ‘loves my look’. I then realise I still have Bonnie’s little pink towel wrapped around my head. As I say – when I have the kids I am despreate and I have no shame.
The following day my legend in Laws arrive for the morning. The kids are delighted to see them. After a wee chat I set off for the gym – kiddie free. Wow what a treat. I am booked in for yoga. I am 15 minutes early and I have my book. Coffee time in the quiet, chilled adult zone.
I am so relaxed by the time I get into yoga that I almost fall asleep when we are doing our warm up breathing in lotus position. The hour flies by. I head down to the hot tub. I then enjoy some peaceful swimming in the lovely outdoor pool. The sun is beating down on my face. I close my eyes and pretend I am in Spain. The two hours go by in the blink of an eye and it is time to get back to my Mummy duties. I feel rejuvenated and ready to take on the world.
As I drive home I contemplate how things have changed. Getting my kit off at the swimming pool these days is a completely different story. I laugh to myself about how easy this kiddie free trip was compared to the previous day. Would I change it? Nah no way but grandparents are wonderful people x