Yesterday we went for a walk in the woods. Just Pudding and me.
Ten minutes after we arrived we were still by the gates with me holding them shut to keep him safe. He was waving at cars going past, climbing on the bars and trying to pick nettles. I could feel that familiar impatience, the can-we-just-get-going-now-please-I’ve-got-other-things-to-do part of me that takes over far too often. And then, something happened.
I remembered the reason I was there. In the house, Pudding had said ‘di’ (meaning outside) and then ‘car’, pointing to where we keep the keys. He then got his boots and made a really good effort at putting them on, so I had agreed.
We weren’t at the woods because I thought it was something we should be doing. It was because he’d asked to go somewhere (not quite sure where – his language skills aren’t that good yet!). At that moment I realised, with guilt, that too often I want him to fit into my world: I get frustrated by his constant demands for food or tv; I get bored with the mundane tasks; and overwhelmed by the many appointments and arrangements that need to be coordinated. Sometimes I need to let that go, and embrace Pudding pace.
So, we said hello to other walkers. We picked up sticks and hit trees with them. We threw leaves in the pond. We did silly walks and ran into imaginary walls. We laughed. We walked a really short distance.
We still got to the inevitable point where he fell over and wanted to be carried for a bit. But the moments that we had already shared made it easier to stop Impatient Mummy taking over.
Pudding pace will be deployed more often. Just remind me of that every so often please. I’m far from perfect and will forget otherwise….