When you have more than one child it’s hard to find the time to dedicate to just one of them – and even harder I suppose when you’re a single parent like I guess I am now. My daughter, Florence, is two and as I work part-time I’m lucky enough to have two days in the week where her brother is at school and it’s just the two of us.
Sam, on the other hand, rarely has time when he has my full attention. Apart from when we snuggle up to read at bedtime, his time with me is nearly always spent when I’m trying to multi-task – and I’m usually listening to my toddler at the same time as him, which often goes something like this.
Sam: ‘Mum, do you think Mars is hot or cold?’
Flo: ‘Mummy I love you mummy. Please can I have some chocolate mummy? Please can I?’
Me: ‘Er, hot? No, not now love, maybe later… after breakfast…’
Flo: ‘I want a drink mummy. Please can I have my Frozen cup? Please can I?’
Sam: ‘But no it’s freezing mum’
Me: ‘Oh ok.. right, what’s freezing? Come on, lets just get to school!’
I often get short-tempered with him because really, I’m just trying to spin too many plates at the same time. He’s not a quiet child, he’s outgoing, imaginative and talkative, and deserves a bit more of my attention.
The chance for my son and I to get a whole day together is rare, but I think now more than ever it’s much-needed. It’s easy to forget sometimes that Sam is dealing with a lot right now too. I’m not the only one grieving for Roger, nor am I the only one missing him dearly. On the outside, it often seems that the kids are accepting of what’s happened and don’t have those big waves of sadness like I do. But it goes without saying that they’re feeling his loss in their own way.
I know that they both miss him so much and who knows what they’re really thinking on the inside. When they’re tired and upset, they’re both more likely to cry ‘I want daddy‘ or ‘I miss my daddy’, something I’ve come to expect but it doesn’t make it any easier.
I think for Sam, it’s important that he knows I’m always there for him and even though at times he drives me up the wall he’s still my first born, my little boy and he deserves a bit of mum time just as much as his little sis.
He was off school on Friday for the start of half term so I decided it was time we spent the day just the two of us, just hanging out together and having some fun. We had a day like this early on in the summer, where I took him into Liverpool and we had a posh burger lunch (his choice, Byrons) and a trip to the toy shop.
This time we headed into town again to get some lunch, see a film and do a bit of shopping. The thing about the four-year age gap between my kids is that just as one became old enough to enjoy the cinema, his little sister came along and made it tricky for us to go together. It was great to be able to enjoy a film together and share something like that just the two of us. For the record, we watched Hotel Transylvania 2 and loved it!
As for the shopping, Sam is a pretty good shopper and even let me have a look round Zara as a pay-off for spending so long in the Lego shop and Disney store. A lovely way to kick-off half term and a reminder that even on my saddest days, I’ve got a little mate right here and a little piece of Rog forever.