We have a rule in our household – there are a couple of words (and any derivatives) that we are only allowed to say once each day. These are ‘hungry’ and ‘tired’. Meg is excused from this, however, I’m sure she is the best fed and slept out of the three of us.
It got to a stage where I think the only thing I was ever saying to Rob was how tired I am. The fact is, of course, that I do feel utterly exhausted. Juggling full time mum, part time work, and training/racing is a choice I’ve made though, and on the whole it’s been achievable.
However, it does all fall down when Meg gets a bit under-the-weather, and this is what happens when she’s teething. We’ve just seen the pattern for the sixth time now, and it basically involves Meg needing Mummy 100% of the day. It’s hard on me, and on Rob too as his giggling little companion doesn’t want to play. It’s lovely to know that just being held provides such comfort for her, but carrying around over 10kg all day is very wearing physically, and knowing she’s in pain is emotionally wearing too.
All-in-all a two week stint of teething for Meg means no training or racing for me, and a real struggle to meet work demands. It passes though, Meg starts giggling again and all resumes to the careful balance we’d originally equated: mum/work/bike.
I’m very fortunate. It’s not always easy to remember this when sat up in bed, neck crooked and desperately trying not to give in to my tired eyes because I’m holding our baby – it’s the only way she’ll fall and stay asleep when she’s feeling poorly. I’m fortunate because I have this amazing family where there is support and a shared vision for what we can achieve; I can be more than a mum, and Rob can be more than a provider. We both work part time, we both get to be a large part of Megan’s upbringing, and we are both getting out on our bikes for rides and events. It’s all done through taking in turns, but we also put a priority on ‘family time’ to enjoy this magical time as new parents. It’s no wonder we are exhausted, money is tight and the house could look better, but it’s right that moaning about being tired or being hungry shouldn’t be the topic of conversation… there is so much else that’s positive going on, and let’s face it, who ISN’T tired?