Some "No-Kids" People Just Don't Understand

Some days, things just get to me. Some weeks, things get even more difficult. Some months, I want to run away. Lately, I've been so frustrated with how difficult being a parent can be. And you know what, that feeling almost never goes away. Don't get me wrong, I wouldn't change it for the world, but it's exhausting and most of the time I feel like I'm doing it all alone.

One thing that is frustrating to me about being a parent of two young kids while the majority of my friends don’t have any at all, is that “no-kid friends” just don’t understand. Simply stated. Friends who don’t have kids, don’t understand what life is really like with them. Some of them try to understand, or they might have an idea from a sibling having kids, but the majority just write it off as me just wanting to be a Mom and nothing else (totally not true), or maybe me not wanting to accommodate anyone else other than my family (also not true). Maybe I’m just not good at juggling what life throws at me, or maybe I move slower than other people, but regardless of why, it’s hard sometimes having two kids and friends at the same time. Let me break it down…


I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had to remind people that I need advance notice for things. That doesn’t mean an hour, or even three hours most of the time; it means I need AT LEAST a day’s notice to get things in order. Why do I need so much notice? Well, what if it’s bath night (we do baths ever-other night because of eczema)? My husband almost refuses to give the girls their baths. Or what if I have special plans for a play date for Emma? I can’t just drop that… she needs time to play hard with her friends. So many things factor in – nap time, meal times, the time it takes to get Emma up and dressed, the time it takes to get Alice changed with matching socks, I have to check the diaper bag thoroughly if I’m taking Alice anywhere, and likewise Emma needs toys to play with in the car.


I will likely never be on time. I have a good chance of being someplace on time if I’m just leaving the house while the hubs is staying home with the kiddos, but if I have to take them anywhere (even if I’m just dropping them off), don’t expect me to be prompt. Even before I had kids it was a 50/50 chance if I’d be on time to my destination, but now with kids you can pretty much expect me to be at least 15 minutes late. Don’t get so upset about it, it’s just how it is. I can even start preparing an hour earlier than usual, and something will still happen to make me late (inevitably that something will be massive amounts of spit-up). So, if you need me to be somewhere at a specific time, be prepared for my tardiness.


A big one for me lately, is that people don’t seem to understand that my life pretty much revolves around my kids. I hate to admit it sometimes, but it really does. They are my whole world, and they need me too. What that means, is that no, I probably won’t care that someone’s birthday party is happening Friday night. I mean, I do care because I might really like that person, but I don’t have a sitter on weeknights, and I don’t trust the hubs to get everything done up to par. On a weeknight (including Fridays), we have to do dinner, sometimes baths, sometimes bottles can’t wait to be washed, Emma’s medications have to be given, Alice needs lotion on her face numerous times, bedtime starts around 8:30pm, Alice needs her bottle by 9:15pm, Emma needs a snack and to be on the couch by 9:30pm, and then you have to pick up (or at least move) the toys on the living room floor so we don’t trip through the night, Emma will need to be taken from the couch to her bed, sometimes laundry needs washed to have clothes for the next day, and then some nights there’s much more to do. For one person to do all of that on their own, it’s rough on them. The hubs is the type of person to just do only what is absolutely necessary, so I’m leery to leave him to fend for himself with the girls through the week (who am I kidding, at any time, haha).


Another one that is a sore subject a lot of times, is work. Before I had kids, I was all gung-ho about learning and knowing everything, moving up the corporate ladder, expanding my range of responsibilities, working additional hours as needed, etc. Then, once I had Emma, it turned into just treading water; make as much money as possible without having to forfeit my time at home with her. And then, along came Alice, and now it’s like “okay, I want more responsibilities now because I need to be an adult again, but not any more hours.” Yeah, if someone knows how to make that happen, let me know. Haha. Instead, I’m defending myself for not remembering each and every thing I’m supposed to do (um, hello, I forgot a bra one day so how am I supposed to remember every tiny thing), or for not putting in as many hours as other people do, or for having to leave early to go to kids’ appointments or pick up Emma because the hubs can’t leave work on time. It’s so frustrating getting to see people be managers and leaders and kind of suck at it, and yet I don’t even get a shot because I’m not going to spend all of my time working (which means I’m not taken seriously). It’s a rough world out there for working Moms… well, for the ones that WANT to see their kids.


I have not watched “Making a Murderer.” I don’t even have Netflix actually. We have Amazon Prime, but it’s used to watch cartoons while the kids are awake and ‘family friendly’ shows/movies for bedtime/winding down (we are currently on Season 4 of Andy Griffith). I don’t have time to really do anything at night through the week; sometimes we can squeeze in a trip to Target or some grocery shopping, but that’s about the extent of it. I start my blog posts over the weekend (most of the time on my tablet) and then I add to it here and there and post when I finish it, which is usually the next weekend (I actually have to schedule my posts because people don’t usually read blogs at 9pm on a Sunday night). My lack of non-parent-related activities really puts a damper on my conversation skills. But, that doesn’t mean that I don’t want to talk! Tell me what you’re up to, how’s work, how’s dating life, what’s the last movie you saw and was it any good? I’m all ears.


After the start of the new year, everyone is all talks about dieting and working out. Shoot, the girls I work close with are health nuts all year round. But, what people sometimes don’t realize, is that while I want to diet or eat healthier, I’m too busy making sure my kids get well-balanced meals and snacks to worry about what I’m eating. Take last night for instance – We had to eat quick because we had to go pick up Hubby’s car from the shop, so I had a bowl of cereal for dinner because I had to make sure Alice was getting her cut-up banana, some left-over carrots, a few cheerios and some water to keep her hydrated. No real nutrition for me, and who knows how many calories, but that’s okay because Alice had a balanced meal. And for lunch at work, I grab what I can which might be Pizza Rolls or sometimes I eat out (and yes, it’s McDonald’s a lot of times because $3 is a lot better than $10). I care, I really do – I mean, I don’t want heart disease – but at the same time, I care more about my kids. And let’s not even get started on the workout debate – I don’t have the time, and we can leave it at that.


That almost seemed like a rant, and I hope I didn't hit a bad note with anyone, but it’s just what I’ve been thinking about lately, spewed out into text. And then, I don’t know if any of this would even frustrate me, if it wasn’t for the fact that I’ve recently realized I don’t have a life of my own anymore (don’t go crazy here, I know I signed up for this, but sometimes it’s hard even still). Have you heard the saying “You have to take care of yourself, to take care of your family.” Well, whoever said that probably has a nanny. Hubs and I only have my parents for sitters, and they watch Alice through the week so I can’t ask them to watch the girls on the weekends. It’s not fair to leave my husband alone with the girls to do things like pamper myself or go shopping for new clothes when he doesn’t have alone time either (alone time is harder for him since he already sees the kids so little because of work).  My parents are nice enough to give us one date night a month where they will keep the kids all night and part of the next day, which is a welcoming relief, but what do we do? Do we go out and have fun? Or do we get all the things done that we can’t do with the kids (not to mention get some extra sleep). It’s not an easy decision.

I often talk to my Mom about giving up all of our extra money each month to put Alice in daycare so that Mom could go on days at work and watch the kids a couple hours on a weeknight and maybe every other weekend so that Gene and I could do more date nights and maybe even go out with friends without each other; more concerts, more home projects done, etc. But, that’s a lot of money to give up when I have a serious problem with buying too many clothes for the girls. Not to mention I want to enroll Emma in dance now that her age group is a later time slot. Plus, Emma had a lot of alone time with her Grandparents and I’d like for Alice to have the same opportunities. I keep telling myself, when Alice turns two, everything will change. Or, I’ll have to be one of those parents who takes their kids to bars. Hahahahaha. Just kidding. Kind of.

So, to all the people out there without kids: take it easy on us parents. I can tell you that before I had kids, I either ignored everything and everyone with kids, or I judged them for their craziness, or I thought that they just didn’t want to have fun anymore, and sometimes I even assumed that they didn’t know what they were doing or maybe that they didn’t care (this was mostly the shoppers whose crazy kids were screaming all through the store). I now know that it’s really hard no matter how many you have, and it may seem that the parents don’t care about their kids being crazy or loud, but chances are they are screaming for help inside or they are just trying to get through whatever they are doing to make it home and have a giant glass of wine before they reprimand their brats. Try not to exclude people who have kids, and maybe be a bit more accommodating for those parents with really young ones. We know that you’re living life care-free, but we are trying to raise little-ones up to be respectful and wonderful human-beings… just look at the world we live in and see that it’s not the easiest thing to do these days.

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