Little E is coming up to twenty-one months old and in that time I have not been able to leave the house with both of my children on my own. Something so simple, and something that people manage to do everyday but it’s something that I feel can’t be done. It’s not just me, Darren feels the same, as last week whilst I was ill be was taking the children out in turns as that is the easiest way.
I have battled with my feelings over this for many months as I have felt like such a failure. This is such a simple task but our circumstances are very different from the ‘norm’.
At the moment our family unit feels like we have two toddlers. Both children are likely to want to run away from us, not hold our hands and not listen to any instructions we give them. This could result in a very dangerous scenarios, my biggest fear being that both children run in different directions and I have to choose between the two. Something I hope I will never have to do.
On Monday life events meant I had to attempt to leave the house with both children on my own. Darren had to go to work, Ethan had a respite day and I had an appointment at Little E’s nursery. We didn’t want to turn down Ethan’s respite day and I had to make the nursery appointment. They weren’t appointments I could rearrange so I had to get out to the house with both children ON MY OWN!
Darren left me the car so I knew it was just a case of getting in the car, to a car park to get Ethan to his respite. Then it would just be me and Little E which was fine.
Getting ready in the morning was a challenge in itself. I get Ethan ready for school in the morning but then I normally get Little E ready after he has left. We all had to get ready at the same time. This is where I made my first mistake, I should have started getting ready at 8am and not have that second cup of tea! We still had an hour to get ready and leave the house but Ethan gets so distracted getting dressed it can be a nightmare. Added to that is that Ethan is having major sensory issues with his clothes at the moment, getting ready can turn into a battle.
I made a second mistake with getting him dressed. I wanted to put him in a long sleeve top and picked out an Elmo t-shirt and a jumper. Ethan loved the Elmo top so much and his jumper was a new one it wasn’t going anywhere near him. This meant I had to dig around for his zip up top and the jumper was disregarded.
With everyone dressed I had ten minutes to make sure I had the bags ready, I should have really done this the night before, put shoes on and get us all in the car.
I decided to put Little E in the car first as Ethan was still putting up a bit of a fight with me. This is where I learnt a very important life lesson. Putting a toddler in the car and locking it will result in the car alarm going off and therefore result in a very upset and scared little girl!
With us all finally in the car and calm we were off. A lovely moment occurred here as I said ‘Let’s go’ which resulted in both of the children saying ‘Let’s go’ all the way to respite.
We made it to respite, we made it to the nursery appointment and we made it home just in-time for lunch and a nice big cup of tea. If I was a drinker this might have been a stronger drink!
I’m not intending for me to take out both of the children on my own again anytime soon but I have proved to myself that I can do it, even if it is a bit stressful.