If a weekly photo challenge helps me to have some quiet time with Ella, then I'm in.
It's amazing how one event can affect everything else. The second we decided to go overseas, my husband and I switched into preparation mode, which has required tending to numerous details outside of our usual work routines and Ella's weekly cycle of playgroup, trips to the park and swimming lessons.
First there are the actual details of going away that need to be planned: arranging leave, booking flights and organising our finances. Then there are the projects we need to complete before we go. We've had breakfast for dinner on a few evenings recently as time has gotten the better of me.
However, last week when Ella had a sinus infection and I was packing for a weekend away to visit friends, what I really wanted to do was sit with Ella and have a picnic tea party (something I've been wanting to do since we bought her a tea set a few weeks ago). I wanted the opportunity to be able to play the sole role of Ella's mother, rather than wearing multiple hats, even if it was just for a short while.
Among the mix of mums with whom I communicate, whether in person or via social media, are those who often post photos on Instagram, which show them spending time with their children. Some of them participate in a weekly photo challenge, where they take the time to capture one beautiful image of each of their children (however many they have).
Last week the photos were pouring in because of school holidays. There were pictures of mothers and their children rollerblading, feeding ducks or just enjoying morning tea in the sunshine in the backyard, and they were a constant reminder that every time I had tried to participate in the weekly photo challenge, I had been diverted by something else.
Why is it easier for some people to pause and reflect while others, like me, struggle to slip in and out of different roles? I think it's because for some mothers having a weekly challenge gives them more incentive to create the 'Kodak moments' that lead to the photos being taken.
If participating in a weekly photo challenge can do the same for me, such as carving out time to have a just-because mummy-and-daughter tea party, even during a busy week, then I'm in! There'll be no giving up after two weeks this time.
Does anyone want to play along with me?