If you have young kids then your life probably revolves around them. This is not always something you choose to do, it just happens. The promise from other parents that "it only lasts a few years so make the most of it" only serves to trap you further into this lifestyle of offspring servitude. They have made you think it will be over soon, but, there are times when "soon" is too far and you really need a break NOW.
Here are 10 signs that you have fallen into this trap and need to arrange childcare for a WHOLE day to spend it on yourself:
1. All you do is talk about your kids. When you are with them, when you are without them. I'm sure everyone you come into contact with, from the postman to the call centre guy trying to help you with a PPI claim you never had, wants to hear every little detail about them. After all, what could be more interesting than a toddler's eating habits or pooing trouble? But maybe, just maybe, for an apocalyptic change you could try talking about something else.
2. You never get time to look in the mirror. You are so rushed off your feet, so busy with the kids that you don't even remember what you look like. In your mind you still look like your 25 year old self, which, lets face it, was slimmer and more attractive, or Megan Fox. Now there's nothing wrong with thinking you look great, unless of course, it means you're on your fourth cookie of the hour and your most vigorous form of exercise is carrying the baby car seat.
3. When you do look in the mirror, you realise you've turned into a man. The upper lip is sprouting a moustache, which you never get to wax and your eyebrows have definitely got a Stephen Frost look. And even though a pregnancy is supposed to be the most womanly of all stages in life, it has left you with some seriously messed up hormones resulting in little hairs growing under your chin.
4. You aimlessly wander around the house in the middle of the night. If you are woken at 3am by the kids - who are we kidding? WHEN you are woken at 3am by the kids, after you finally succeed in putting them back to sleep, you struggle to sleep yourself. Instead, you get out of the bedroom, away from your sleeping partner (strongly fighting the urge to pinch his soundly sleeping self) and you just sit in the hallway or another room doing nothing...thinking, wondering. Even though you are tired beyond belief. You actually begin to cherish those few minutes of alone time...until you realise you have to be up in a few hours, oh crap! Now the pressure of trying to get some sleep is on. Once back in bed, your sleep has suddenly departed, that's just great, so you're left to make plans as to what to do with the kids tomorrow, while accidentally (ahem) elbowing your partner a few times. Either that, or you are so sleep deprived, you hallucinated the whole thing.
5. You can make yourself double pee. Bathroom time is the only "me" time (most of the time) so when there is someone else with the children, like your partner or a friend, you spend a long time peeing. Not only that, just so that you can have a guilt-free stay in the bathroom, you end up making yourself do a second pee after the first has stopped. Sometimes, if you are reading a particularly interesting article on your Facebook newsfeed, you can stretch it to three pees. If there was an award for the longest pee or pees, you would win it hands down.
6. When someone asks you what your hobbies are, you look at them like they've suddenly turned into an ape doing the gangnam style (a look of bewilderment and disbelief, turning into a laugh). Hobbies? What the hell are hobbies? I have two kids under the age of four. That is my life!
7. You consider breastfeeding as break/gym time. This is the only time you can sit on your butt (other than when on the loo) without feeling guilty. You can use your phone, check emails and browse the net and provided you don't drop the phone on your baby (yes, we have all done it!) it kinda feels like a break. Not to forget that you can burn up to 500 calories a day, that's the most intensive exercise you have done for years!
8. You struggle to walk without a buggy. You are so used to pushing that buggy wherever you go, that you don't think you can walk without one. When you try, you are all over the place, knocking into strangers, bumping into lamp posts. And all you can think is where the hell are you supposed to put your shopping.
9. You start imagining Peppa Pig's life growing up. What will her high school and university life be like? Who will she marry and how many kids will she have? After all, if it was up to your kids those episodes will eventually air.
10. Your favourite songs are nursery rhymes. You sing them ALL the time, in the shower or long after the kids have gone to bed. You have even made your own dance moves to them. You have got so good, you rock those nursery rhymes! Now you just have to fight the urge to sing them in public.
If you are guilty of any of the above, then take time out for yourself. And if you know someone who reminds you of any of these, whether it be your partner or a friend, help them to some time out. You will be doing everyone a favour!