I like to think I’m a fairly determined mum. When I promise something to my children I will do everything in my power to make it happen. I promise a Fireman Sam truck and I will deliver, by the skin of my teeth. I promise a trip to the farm or that we’ll go for a walk in the woods, we will do it. Toddlers never forget and I never want them to feel they have to remind me of anything. They will remind me anyway, because they’re young, but you see what I mean.
Today I’d promised we’d go to the beach. I gave them the option of which beach and what time we’d go there. They where confused when I was naming the beaches, he gave me a puzzled expression and said “just beach, my wants to go beach”.
On the drive down there, my sweet little boy kept yelling about the beach with my sweet girl squealing beside him. When you’re about to please your children and have an outing which has a high chance of not turning to rubbish, you feel a little smug inside, and your heart is happy. We sang and bopped with huge smiles on our faces as we drove up the the tiny carpark on the beach.
There were dozens of parasailers out at sea. It was like looking at a length of colourful flowers above the ocean. In my head I was high-fiving myself thinking “yes, what’s better than a trip to the beach? A trip to the beach to watch people parasailing”. My kids are into things like that, aren’t yours?
We rolled up slowly to the carpark and it looked a little more full than usual. It didn’t just look full, it was full. All these people who were parasailing out at sea needed somewhere to park, duh.
I hated them all instantly.
I hope they only catch a boring breeze and not the ideal gust of wind.
There’s another beach a little further up. I know that sounds strange. Because obviously the beach stretches the entire coastline, but I needed somewhere convenient to ditch the car. Which was a little further up.
Yet again there was nowhere to park. But I was determined. I looked at their faces in the rear-view mirror and said “we’ll come back tomorrow”. My boy especially, looked deflated. I was getting a little desperate. We wouldn’t come back tomorrow, we will plant our toes firmly on those painful pebbles, no matter what.
So I abandoned the car. I just stopped the car and got out, not in a parking space, nowhere convenient, but I didn’t care. Ruthless.
I pulled the baby beasts out of the car and set them on the ground, they ran like dogs let off their lead. While I was juggling car keys, bags, hats and other parenting paraphernalia, they were half-way down the beach. It would have been all well and good me strolling behind them if I didn’t have to stop every second to shake pebbles out of my shoes. I looked at my trainers before we left and I thought “no, far too casual”, but they weren’t to casual when my dolly shoes were sucking in half the beach and my toes were cosying up to tiny rocks.
We hobbled down to the beach and inside I was so glad I didn’t fob them off with an excuse to go home. Their happiness means everything to me and being outside is good for your soul. Don’t you feel incredibly relaxed sat on the beach, listening to the waves, with only your children giggling beside you?
Don’t get me wrong, the kids laughed proudly at their farts and threw pebbles at eachother, fun turned into strops and the boy laid in protest because we had to leave, but the determination paid off.
“My not going home”
He stayed there all night
On the way home I did have to shake the boys leg and randomly shriek his name to stop him from falling asleep. A few hours at the beach wears you out, unfortunately I was also determined not to let him sleep. There’ll be no bedtime battles in our house tonight.
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