I am new to Gransnet and find the level of support provided by contributors very uplifting. I agree with AuroraW that the posts are interesting and very helpful.
My DD2 lives some distance away and I recently spent a week at her house to help her with DGDs aged 3 and 1 while DSIL was away on business. DH joined me for the second week, but we stayed in a rented flat nearby. At the end of 2 weeks I was absolutely exhausted, despite the fact that DGD1 goes to nursery school Mon-Fri and DGD2 goes to the creche 3 days a week. DD2 works from home, so on days when the baby was at home, or at weekends, I was in charge of most of the childcare. We shared other duties such as shopping and cooking and school drop-offs & pick-ups. DD2 still has broken nights with one or other of the children waking, & suffers tension in her shoulders from carrying the baby and frequent migraines too. I ended up carrying DGD2 up and down stairs, in and out to the car and so on. I was surprised to find I was so tired, as I adore the GDC and we all get on well, so I guess it’s to do with my age (I’m 67). Could it be that it’s because I’m ‘on duty’ all the time I’m with them? ( I’m not really a worrier.) I remember being busy with my own children when they were small, but nothing like this level of tiredness (I was in my early thirties then!) DH is a good deal older than me, but is very good at playing with the children & making them laugh, although he doesn’t do the nappy-changing type tasks.
DD1 lives close to me, so we can visit each other during the day. We sometimes have DGS aged 2 to stay the night. This will no doubt become more frequent as she is expecting another baby in May.
I feel fortunate in that both my DDs & DSILs are very considerate about our well-being and give us plenty of notice if they need us to babysit. Reading other people’s posts makes me realise this is quite rare! However if anyone can answer my questions I’d be very grateful. Does childcare get less tiring physically as the children get older? Is it reasonable for me to say that I can only look after the DGC for a week at a time, even when the parents are present too?
Many thanks in advance for your advice!