I swear I used to be a more efficient person. It never used to take me 45 minutes to actually get out the door to go anywhere. And I used to be somewhat punctual! My ability to DO anything with any kind of speed and efficiency seems to have decreased exponentially with each child. And this phenomenon became very apparent to me earlier this week.
I went swimming with the kids and my girlfriend and her three kids the other day. I was late (as usual). I did not have the kids in their swimsuits already because I had to quickly do a rinse/spin/dry before we left the house (which may explain why we were late and I really should have more than one bathing suit that fits me). We finally got in the pool and we all had a great time. When it was time to go, we headed back to the family change room. And I swear, I thought I was organized. We showered, all went pee and then got dressed. And yet still, my girlfriend and her three kids (6, 4 and 2) were all dressed and packed up and in coats and boots a good 15 minutes before us! How? I only have 2 kids! We all walked out to our cars together and I am not sure how, but she had her 3 kids in her car, in their car seats and boosters and was out of the parking lot before I was even in my seat! What the heck is wrong with me?? Again, I reiterate--I only have 2 kids!
Maybe I just take my time doing things. Maybe my kids are not as independent as others. I do know that I do not like to be rushed. When I am, I tend to lose my mommy cool and then no one is happy.
We are always the last to leave anywhere. At the little man's preschool, our car is the last to leave the parking lot almost every day. At swimming lessons, I don't like to try to fight the rush to the change room and we take our time there too.
Maybe the arthritis slows me down a bit. Maybe the extra time I take to get my toddler in the ring sling is time-consuming. Maybe because my kids are rear-facing in their car seats, it takes us a bit longer to get into the car. Maybe I just really don't care to do things FAST! Maybe I have other qualities that are more important to me.
I am always prepared. Some might say overly so. I always have a full back of snacks and various meal time paraphernalia on me at all times. I have a fully stocked first aid kit in my purse. My kids each have a full change of clothes stashed in the glove compartment of my car. And I always have a minimum of 2 baby carriers in the car (one for me and one for anyone else in case of emergency or need). I have baby wipes, kleenex, hand sanitizer, hand cream and tooth floss in my purse as well. And I tend to over pack for vacations-cause you just never know!
So, which is it then? What do I want to be? An efficient Mama or a prepared Mama?
I don't know? A bit of both would be nice.
But trust me, in a pinch, YOU would want me to be the prepared Mama. Because if I was the efficient one, I would already have my kids in the car and I would be out of that parking lot before you even had a chance to ask for a bandage/snack/clean pair of pants/carrier/baby wipe!!