I have never been as aware of time as I am since having children.
If you’ve ever followed Gina Ford, you’ll know what I mean. Suddenly you know EXACTLY what time it is at any given point in the day. Crikey, eating toast at 7.02 am is grounds for failure. Is she watching, will she know?
I shouldn’t mock. Gina’s done a lot for us. So much in fact, that we almost considered naming Godivy, Gina. You know, as a tribute.
But even if you’ve never been in the Gina camp, all children demand some sort of routine. Three meals a day. Snacks. Naps. Bedtime. Which means one thing. You are permanently looking at the clock.
Before children (BC), time was a luxury. I had plenty of it and when sometimes I wasted it I didn’t care too much. I could make up for it tomorrow. And I often lost track of time. Ah, remember those days, when you lost something other than your keys or your sanity?
There were bad points to this of course. Once we were so late for a wedding we passed the bride as we ran up the aisle, I lost my shoe on the way and with all the pews full we had to sit in the choir. ‘Best seats in the house,’ said Daddy Pig nudging me and winking at his friend, the groom, who we were so close to, we could have performed the ceremony.
Now, I am more likely to be early than late because I have to allow such a ridiculous amount of time to get the simplest things done. ‘You make getting out of the house look very easy,’ said my very lovely childless friend the other day when she came to visit. A-ha, she hadn’t witnessed the 45 minutes of ‘behind-the-scenes’ work prior, in order to make that happen.
Suddenly time is so precious I’ve become a little obsessed with it. I know this because only a few weeks ago, I was blogging about living in the moment. There just isn’t a drop to waste and so I squeeze every last bit out of each and every second. Which means that most of the time I am doing too much. And yet, it’s still not enough. Oh the irony.
The exception to this is when I have Beaver and Godivy in tow. Then it can be hard to squeeze things out of an hour, let alone a second. So on that score, I’ve relented. The washing will wait. The weetabix can lay encrusted on the floor a little bit longer. Hopefully the cat will eat those stray peas? My time might be precious. But Beaver and Godivy’s childhood? Well, that’s going to be gone in a flash.
So yes, ‘time and tide wait for no man.’ But sometimes it has to wait for a toddler.