On the one hand, parks are great. It always feels good to get outside and explore. Visiting new-to-us parks helps me feel more invested in + connected to the city where we live. The kids love playing on different equipment and comparing their favorites.
Honestly, going to the park is one of the easiest ways I know to break up a monotonous day. And I love that our city (and those nearby) puts a lot of effort into maintaining beautiful + fun parks for the community to enjoy.
But on the other hand…taking kids to the park is kind of the worst. Everyone wants a snack or a drink or is too hot or too cold or doesn’t like this park or wants to go home or isn’t ready to go home yet. It’s always something.
When the park is crowded, I slip into lifeguard mode, counting heads over + over to make sure nobody gets lost or kidnapped. I get really anxious while we’re there and am exhausted + cranky when we get home.
When we’re the only ones at the park, there’s usually a reason. Like it’s 100° out, or the park isn’t that fun to begin with. And then the kids are exhausted + cranky when we get home.
Generally I wind up screaming (usually just in my head but sometimes…not) THIS IS WHY WE DON’T DO FUN THINGS!!!
Maybe it’s just the introvert in me. I’d rather stay home and read a book while my kids play in the backyard than go socialize with other parents while our kids run wild.
Or maybe it’s the time of year. It’s easy to want to be outside when the weather is cool + breezy. When the temperatures start creeping up in March, I want to bunker in with my AC on full blast and never look at a sun-baked swing again.
Maybe it’s the urban sprawl of where we live. There are two small parks within walking distance of our house, but we have to drive for 10 minutes or more to get to the good parks. The prospect of loading + unloading kids is enough to make me want to stay home.
I try to be a fun mom, but it just doesn’t come naturally to me. If I can get myself in just the right mood, plan ahead, and set my expectations low, a trip to the park can be awesome. Those spontaneous, “Mom! Can we go to the park?” moments, though? No thanks.
There’s a reason the kids like David more than me. It’s fine.
(360 + 262 + 129 weeks)
Where do you fall on the spectrum of love/hate for parks? Please tell me I’m not the only one who love them in theory but really struggles in practice!