Monday 5 April 2021

Just Give Me Five Minutes

And no, this isn't a sales pitch. Although if you want to go buy one of my books, I'll be eternally grateful.  

It's what I say to my kids, every five minutes. Or at least that's how it feels. Juggling work and kids is always tricky and lately I feel like I'm dropping way too many plates.

I'm terrified of my kids only remembering that I never had any time for them. Or for them to stop asking me to come and play or do a puzzle or requesting playdoh or whatever their latest whim happens to be. 

I find myself getting to the end of the day and analysing over whether or not I spent enough time with them. And, more importantly, did I 'play'. Because playing is something that does not come very naturally to me. 

Take today for instance. We had snuggles in bed this morning, we read together, I helped to build a train track, we made fairy cakes and put Easter decorations on them and... that was it. The rest of the time they entertained themselves, alternatively screaming abuse at each other (they're 7 and 3) and coming in to ask me for stuff.

I know this is the daily guilt trip all working mothers have. I know that. But it doesn't stop me from worrying that I'm the boring mum who never has any time to be fun. 

How do I explain that I work so hard and spend so much time on my laptop writing because I am trying to build my author platform, sell more books and finally be able to buy a car. Or put the deposit down on a real house with a real garden and more space than we currently shoehorn ourselves into. 

Don't get me wrong, I'm not complaining. I have a part-time job as well as my writing career. My husband is in a steady, well-paid job. I've got two crazy little cabbages and a roof over my head not to mention heating, fresh water and food in the cupboard. There are an awful lot of families out there who are in desperate need of some or all of those things. 

But I want to give my kids a garden to play in with a shed for them to have a bike. I want them to have a little more space so they're not trying to live on top of each other all the time. I want to be able to bundle them in the car and take them on adventures. 

I keep telling myself I'll get there and I really hope that one day I do but in the meantime, I need to stop saying just give me five minutes and instead get down on the floor and start building some lego. 

Just give me five minutes. 

Claire Buss is a multi-genre author and poet, completely addicted to cake. Find out more about her books on her website Join the discussion in her Facebook group Buss's Book Stop.

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