Its 4am, your second child has woken for the 3rd time that night because he is teething, annoyingly this is 20 minutes after you have just got your oldest child back to sleep as they woke from a nightmare. Tomorrow you have to take one child to nursery the other has their first day at infant school, then there is swimming club at 5:00 followed by tea, bath, bed and hopefully a better night’s sleep.
The last thing on your mind is ‘I wonder what to do with all my spare time!!’
Well 15 years later that is the question that my wife and I are rather surreally now asking ourselves. Yes we have had the, ‘I can’t believe how quickly time flies’, ‘have we really got a son old enough to drive’, ‘I don’t feel old enough’ conversations. And no, we have not come to the point where we have truly accepted that our children need us less and less on a day to day basis.
There is one upside though, we find ourselves with free time which can be filled spontaneously, on a whim, as the fancy takes us. Unbelievable.
So how are we using it?
Our first instinct is to use it to help fulfil our children’s lives (code for keeping them close by) but the reality is their definition of fulfilment is a taxi service and a wallet they like to empty.
So we have taken a new approach and started to embrace our new found freedom filling it with a new dog who is full of positive life, a camper van that can take us wherever, whenever, the gym, concerts, festivals, city breaks and spontaneous nights out with friends.
And do you know what, I think I am going to sit back and enjoy watching my kids become independent adults, whilst loving the next phase of my own life.