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Homepage Slider Parenting — 16 April 2013

I’ve spent a lot more time on my own with the kids recently and because of that I’ve noticed more and more how our energy levels are completely mismatched. I’m now beginning to wonder if they ever ‘match up’…

Woman sleeping by Timothy Krause @Flickr.com

Woman sleeping by Timothy Krause @Flickr.com

My Uncle came to visit us last week and I remembered how as kids we used to eat our lunch and then immediately jump up and down on his knee demanding he play with us. He was always very good at getting down on his knees and getting stuck in but just after he’d had his lunch he always said: ‘Give me 5 minutes to let it go down… let me have a cup of tea first.’

That was well over 30 years ago now but I can still remember how I used to think it was odd. Why on earth would you want to just sit down when you could be up and about doing something? The food I’d just eaten had recharged my batteries yet it seemed to completely ‘zap’ an adults.

Fast-forward to last week and I found myself empathizing. Worn out after eating lunch and feeling the carb-fog settle in I could have happily curled up on the sofa like a hedgehog and had forty-winks. Instead, the kids were pulling on their shoes and demanding a game of football (if you can call it that) on the lawn.

However, just as I was beginning to write myself off as another ‘old fart’ I started to notice times when my energy came into its own and left the kids’ lagging behind. Like when we walked home from the park (I had taken an active part in playing) but they had to be dragged back for the entire ten minutes walk and then flopped down on the sofa like a cushions without any stuffing.

Then, this morning, I was up and showered and ready to start our home-schooling. At first we were all pretty well-matched energy wise but come forty-five mins in and I could already see the eyes glazing over and heads starting to need hands to keep upright. No wonder they have so many breaks at school. After a snack and a drink we started again but could only manage 30 minutes before they look so shattered I decided school was out. I’m now the only one left in the room – they’ve toddled off to their rooms to play quietly!

As we’re starting home-schooling and travelling together these energy dips and peaks will become a lot more noticeable. I’m sure a lot of it for them will be the mental challenges of taking on new experiences and learning which kind of makes me a little envious and somewhat inspired. Wouldn’t you rather be knackered because you’ve had to use the grey matter and not just because you’ve cooked a Sunday roast and vacuumed?

What about you? How do you pair up your energy levels? Have you done something super-scientific or just know from experience what works best? Is there ever a time when our energy levels are on par? I’d love to know when they are.

As always, if you have any great ideas, comments or advice please do share!

Michelle xx

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(4) Readers Comments

  1. Hi Michelle, One thing I know for sure that would help tally them up is if we went to bed at more similar times. We got to bed too late in this country, but where you\’re going, there\’s a great deal to be said for the siesta. xx

    • Hi Anya. Yes, we’ll be adjusting our sleeping times to factor in the sunlight hours anyway. Boating peeps go to bed early and get up early. The thought makes me shudder. I can’t siesta as I go ‘weird’ if I sleep in the daytime. I feel like a zombie and get quite jumpy! Thanks for commenting. I’m hopefully back in the swing of blogging again so I’ll be popping over to see what you’ve been up to. xxx

  2. Forcing yourself to do a little exercise should help with the \’carb fog\’ – even if you just play a short game with the kids you\’ll find yourself bursting through it – seems to work for me (but then I\’m an insomniac!) x

    • Hello Gemma. Thanks for your comment. Yes, you’re right to say that I should get up and get moving to get through the slumps. I will try harder from now on – I don’t like ‘feeling old’ ! Michelle

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