A few months back, when one of Baby Lighty’s Godparents asked her if she’d like to take part in a local endurance and obstacle race, there was only one resounding answer:
Nope, nope, no, no, no and more no.
There wasn’t even any pretence of “oh well, you know, someone has to look after Baby Lighty…”, my answer was always going to be a resounding no. There was absolutely no way that Mrs Lighty was ever going to be taking part in anything that involved exercise, obstacles and more mud than Glastonbury.
This didn’t deter Mr Lighty and co. from taking part in The Nuclear Races, however, nor did it deter The Nuclear Races from placing a little wager with Mrs Lighty on Twitter that once she’d spectated, she’d want to join in next year (FYI, I have won that bet, I absolutely, positively, DO NOT want to take part next year; The Nuclear Races, I’ll be along to collect that fiver shortly!! ;D).Anyway, I digress. So Mr Lighty and co. have this past weekend ran 6kms, swung from ropes, taken on the death slide, crawled through tunnels, scaled walls, and, as Mr Lighty put it “waded through quicksand”. But as I prepared to take Baby Lighty along to watch his Daddy cover himself in mud, a thought did flit through my mind: who needs an endurance race when you’ve got motherhood?! Just the logistics of spectating took some planning: should I take the sling or the buggy?! I need to pack a sun hat in case it’s sunny, a warmer hat in case it’s cold, bottles of milk, a cup for water, a packed lunch…the Bundlebean, a picnic blanket, toys…
Then when I got there, I had to take on my very own obstacle course: navigating the buggy across long grass (before Mr Lighty had even started the race he had to lift one end of the buggy across the grass with Mrs Lighty carrying the other end and Baby Lighty thinking it was all a great adventure), then jumping up and down to pick up toys being thrown out of the buggy, manoeuvring the buggy this way and that to keep it out of the sun and the wind (this is a British Summer, after all), making up a bottle one handedly whilst trying not to drop the teat on the muddy field floor…
Then there’s one of the main events: the “try to stop Baby Lighty from grumbling by transferring him from the buggy into the sling” event. This involves balancing your bag, coat and blankets on the buggy (a very challenging weight-distribution-to-buggy-tipping-over ratio involved) whilst putting the sling on, placing baby in it, then wearing the baby for the next hour.
And let’s not forget that us parents have our fair share of obstacles to overcome every day. Most days we’ll take part in events ranging from ‘sleep deprived working mother’ and ‘stop the toddler from climbing on the TV unit’ through to ‘the mummy Olympics competitive parenting’ and ‘catching food that has been thrown from the highchair’. Oh and we’re not covered in mud while we’re doing this, we’re often covered in
Yes Mr Lighty et al did fantastically well to finish the course, covered in mud and determination, having a great time to boot, but as Mrs Lighty walked back to the car supporting the head of a sleeping Baby Lighty in the sling with one hand, pushing the buggy that now contained just blankets, a lunchbox and the change bag across gravel and up a steep hill with the other hand, one of the race marshals commented: “Now THAT takes skill!!”
Who needs an endurance race when you’re a mum?!•••
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