It’s easy to look at other parents’ posts on social media and feel bad.
We’ve all done it.
Someone you follow posts photos every day of them and their perfectly dressed baby or children, on days out or at home. Smiling, happy, getting on and loving life. Killing it. Whilst you’re still in your pyjamas at lunchtime, having just about managed to get up out of bed and feed the kids, who are now screaming for no apparent reason, or trying to murder each other just for breathing the wrong way.
You look longingly at those social media posts, and wonder how these other parents have their shit together when for you, having time to shower is considered a win.
So, in the interests of solidarity, I wanted to share with you the reality of a family day out with four children, one of whom has additional needs (my teenage son was recently diagnosed with adhd after a ten year fight. But that’s a whole other post!).
These two photos were taken seconds apart. I was trying to get a nice photo of them all. Teen Panda flat out refused to get involved. Big Panda Girl and Small Panda Girl we’re fighting over who got to sit in the chair, whilst Littlest Panda was dancing about in front of them, pulling faces.
Yep, this is our reality. But you wouldn’t normally see it. I’d post the top photo on my social media, try and scrub out the memory of the second one.
But real life isn’t perfect. It’s boring, mundane, frustrating and sometimes drives you to the brink of insanity.
But in between all that are the little moments that are perfect. Those moments where the baby smiles at you for the first time, or says “Mama”. Where the children play nicely together, or help each other without acting like they’re having their eyes poked out with a hot stick. And they’re what makes it all worth it. Sometimes it feels like it’s been far too long since the last one. But they will come.
And until then, we can just fake it on Instagram right?!
P.s I did eventually get a nice photo of them all, even Teen Panda. All it took was them having to climb up a huge, dead tree.
I mean the dog looks like she wants to kill me. And Littlest Panda had a tantrum straight after because he thought he hadn’t been looking and wanted everyone to climb back up and do it again. But I’ll take it as a win haha.