Hi! <Waves>

Funny and honest tales from a made-to-work Dad of three, wobbling, graying, and laughing his way through parenthood. Armed to the teeth with Nerf guns, full of pie, fighting a chocolate addiction, but genuinely honoured to be at least half of Team Parents (yay!).

21 May 2018

Out of Time...

I so want to be a good Dad.
<Crosses fingers>
And be there for all three of them. In their lives. Connected.
Some days I feel I do this.
And others... Well other days I fail and that sucks.

This week.
Team Parents (yay!) main focus has been on Boy10. As he is sitting his Key Stage 2 SATs tests (exams) whilst being whipped by the education flail of pigeonholing and self esteem destruction.
And I've upped my game and attention on him.
Before he left for school I picked him up, and balanced him on my shoulder.
Then spun him round and round really fast, pretending that his head was gonna smack on a wall (it wasn't). And for good measure I did a few huge little jumps with him over my shoulder.
Classic Dad stuff. That is like crack to Boy10. And relieves any tension in him through fun and laughter. My special powers skills.
Then when I got home from work on his first day of exams. I told to him grab a ball and we headed off to a field to practice catches for ten minutes.
Boy10 loved that.

(Michael: “I sat there looking ugly, looking ugly and mean
I knew what you were saying, You were saying to me…”
(treat your ears here: Me In Honey))

As for Miss6 and BabyBoy3 that day.
Well BabyBoy3, the utter little delight that he is, had me up at 5am. Joy.
And after an hour of returning him to bed, despite him being utterly, utterly awake, and finding the whole process hilarious.
I gave up and we went downstairs, as quiet as mice, to watch cartoons.
At least that was the plan...

I give up! Come on then... Let's go watch cartoons...
But we have to very very very VERY quiet. Boy10 needs his sleep...
BabyBoy3: 'OK DADDY!'
BabyBoy3: 'SHHHHHHH!'
BabyBoy3: <Covers little mouth with hand>
Better... Let's go...
Maybe you should just walk down the stairs...
BabyBoy3: 'OK DADDY!'
BabyBoy3: 'SHHHHHHH!'

And as for Miss6.
Well that morning of the week is ours. It’s the one day everyone else naffs off.
And we get a full thirty minutes in the house together.

What do you want to play?
Miss6: 'Game of Life?'
Boy10's 'Game of Life'?
Miss6: <Nods>
It's fine, just wanted to make sure you knew...
We've only thirty minutes, you gotta be utterly, UTTERLY, ready before we start?
Miss6: <Nods and runs off to get ready>
[Thirty minutes later]
Let’s go then… Hang on! <Notice’s Miss6 is in jammies for the first time>
[Lots of running about]
[Both are late]

So yesterday win!
Full sweep. Every child got some focused Dad attention. I even found time to sit and watch tele with Mrs. Amazing.
Whilst eating. Planning out our lives over the next few weeks.
A brief hour of time with all children in bed, when neither of us are too tired to talk, and are not actually sleeping.
Special moments.

But today.
Well I thought it was going well.
To add spice to Boy10's leaving for school rough play: I chased him full pelt through the house. Shoes on and all.
Ending up with me bundling on him on a bed. Boy10 giggling away.
Job well done I felt. Although there were was one scary moment when I rounded a corner at top speed and my not-quite-twenty <Coughs a lot> frame nearly didn't manage to turn in time. Before a wall. But I soon shrugged off that pain.
<Weeps and limps off>

(Boy10: 'Are you OK DAD?'
<Whimpering sounds>)

I spent some good time with Miss6.
As we, and BabyBoy3, scooted into school. It wasn't great time for BabyBoy3 as he was crying and wailing most of the way. Because he wasn't in the lead.
As Miss6 wasn’t letting him be in the lead. She kept scampering to the front. Much to BabyBoy3’s annoyance. And continual tears.
I'm afraid I wasn't very sympathetic as he was making us all late. Well except him, nursery don't care when he rocks up. We pay them a lot.
But my boss and Miss6’s school very much do care.

It wasn’t all bad for BabyBoy3 though.
As we arrived at nursery he smelt crumpets in the air. Which cheered him considerably. Second, and possibly third breakfast can have that effect.
I like hot crumpets too.

Then I missed another chance to spend time with BabyBoy3 at lunch.
My parents were at my place looking after him and I only had an hour for lunch.
And it's such a treat to see both my parents, and to chat to them both.
And they won't be here forever...

<Checks watch> Another cuppa?
Parents: 'Isn't it a bit late for caffeine'
YES! FAR TOO LATE. Especially when you have young children. This time of night is basically the morning for ...
Parents: 'Go on then...'
<Mutters off to make cuppa>

So sadly once again BabyBoy3 was sidelined.
I hate having to make that kind of decision. But I only see my parents for an hour a week.
And to be fair BabyBoy3's around a lot more than that...
But then his need for my time is greater…. ARGHGHGHH!
Why is there no answer for this!!!
Anyway, moment with him not taken.

Then we were onto the evening.
Miss6 had already mentioned that she was looking forward to story time with me.
Which is nice. Although she only seems to say that on the one night a week I go out.
My night. My one evening a week to myself, that I prioritise above everything else. Ish.
Learning to be a ninja classes.
Being able to sing full volume in the car for the hour it takes me to drive. Is worth it alone.
Being able to punch and kick the crap out of a bag and sometimes people, whilst waving swords and sticks about, WHILST learning how to be ninja...
Frankly how could I not go.

(Scale 1:1)

Still it makes the evening tight (time wise).
Especially as Boy10 still needed to be taken out to play ball or something.
Boy10 gets his time with me outside. He is calmed.
Miss6 gets a whopping twenty minutes of my time before I leave. In which I make sure I am extra funny. Extra caring.
And I let her jump on my tummy and squish me an extra time.
Then I'm off to ninja training.

By the time I've got back.
Washed. Calmed down. Eaten something. It's generally close to midnight.
Which is so unbelievably late going to bed in our 5am starts lifestyle. It's a wonder I can still move.

As I crawl into bed.
Body half broken from class. Hella tired out. And tummy full of crisps pasta and salad.
I'm feeling pretty good about how I've spread my time with everyone today.
Been good son. CHECK.
Been good Dad. CHECK.
Went to work, didn't get fired. CHECK.
Made self healthier and learnt new killing methods. CHECK.
Phoned at least one brother. CHECK!
Yep, nailing it!

But then, just as sleep has nearly scooped me in her lovely arms and whispered naughty things my ear. Mrs. Amazing wonders to me if BabyBoy3 will be feeling better tomorrow...

... What?
Mrs. Amazing: 'He's been poorly all day, I wonder if he'll be OK tomorrow for nursery?'
I... I didn't know he was poorly... Crap...
<Is attacked and eaten by guilt monster>

I obviously don't sleep for a bit.
However an hour later. I've worked out a few things:
1. I should have noticed BabyBoy3 was poorly. Bugger.
2. Three kids is hard. Harder than it appeared when BabyBoy3 first turned up. Being outnumbered is exhausting.
3. The Cat is a git. Because he didn't really want to come in, but is now being a smegger downstairs and I'll have to go let him out.
4. I do not have enough time to give everyone the time and attention I want to. Or they need.

I can change 1) & 3) and make sure they don't happen again.
I can't change 2). I can just rest more. Somehow.
And 4) well...

That's the whole point of this tale.
I don't have enough time for them all. I don't. There's three of them.
Me and Mrs. Amazing barely scrape together a hour a day together.
And I certainly don't have enough time for all the things I want to do. Which always seem to be last in priority. But that's OK.
Really. It's OK...

Brainzilla: 'It's not OK you know?'
Shhhh it is...
Brainzilla: 'But our dreams? Our plans?'
Can wait. Or have changed...
Brainzilla: 'BOLL-'
Hey, hey, keep it clean please!
Brainzilla: 'OCKS!'

It is OK.
Because this mad, busy to the eyeballs, no sleep, life, will pass. It'll change. Stuff always does. At some point I'll / we'll have a chance to catch up. Hopefully.
And if not? Well at least I tried my best and had as much fun as possible along the way…

<Kids all assemble>
Nerf war? Water fight? Or just a bundle on the sofa here? <Points to sofa>
[Intense kids discussion]
<Is dragged onto sofa>
<Is shot at, soaked and jumped on>
<Is happy>

(OK let’s have a water pist….
<Mutters>… Mine’s tiny compared to that…)