What to Expect…

… when you’re on a playdate.

When I feel like I’m getting a bit out of my depth in the land of toddlerhood I usually turn to a book or vaguely scholarly article. Because I don’t trust the mass hysteria of a forum. It often makes me want to cry/guilt me into changing my mothering style.

Today I turned to the What to Expect book with myself in mind. The last few days off I’ve been spending time in new locations: Horniman Museum on Friday and Bethlem Museum of the Mind today. I’ve invited some mum friends to join me and the toddlers have loved the exhibits (Louis Wain’s cats were especially thrilling today).

The What to Expect book tells me that my toddler is ‘supposed’ to be playing mostly independently with occasional interaction between peers. It sounds too familiar; I feel like I’ve regressed to having the social skills of a toddler.

Managing snippets of conversations before having to head in the opposite direction from one another as we follow the mini ones in all sorts of directions… it’s quite the challenge.

Nonetheless, It’s comforting to be in the same place as another human who’s not your child. It’s comforting to know there’s an adult close by with whom you could have a conversation with, if only your child would stand/sit still for long enough.

The Book told me to: ‘experiment with different groups, settings, times of day and activities.’ Which is what I’ll do. For both my sanity and the toddler’s. Maybe I’ll find the perfect location where I can sip coffee and have a full on adult conversation. Though I have a feeling it might be when her dad is around to look after her instead!

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