We have always had the luxury of being a 2 car family. I know you don’t NEED a car to get around, but with Piglet in tow my life has always been made a lot easier by being able to just jump in the car and go. It is part of our routine, it’s what we’re used to.
Not long ago my car started to play up. It was a complex issue and it spent over 6 weeks going back and forth to various garages trying to get it repaired. JHogg needed his car to get to work so I had to cope without a car that whole time. Before we had children I don’t think it would have been a huge issue. I would have taken the bus to work or had a lift from Jhogg and that would be it. But with Piglet in tow and being at home I found it a huge adjustment.
Here are the things I found more difficult without a car:
I always thought our house was well connected, but it turns out our local bus only runs every 30 minutes from 6:30am to 7pm. This may sounds regular to you, but I was previously accustomed to one that ran every 15 minutes right up until midnight.
I also have the issue of getting the pram onto the bus. If there is no space I would have to wait for the next bus which suddenly makes 30 minutes sound an awful lot longer!
My family only live less than 10 minutes away by car. On the bus I was required to get one back to the centre of town, another one back out to their area and then a 10 – 15 minute walk up a steep hill. I rapidly concluded it wasn’t worth it and started phoning for a lift if they wanted us to come over!
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On top of needing to take 2 buses to the nearest supermarket, there was the fun and games of getting the groceries home. Toss in a grumpy Piglet wanting fed/changed/entertained/sleep and you have my worst nightmare.
I quickly resorted to doing the shopping with JHogg in tow. He enjoyed this about as much as I did. It meant we got back into the habit of menu planning though as neither of us fancied a mid week evening trip if we had forgotten something.
During the week I am used to be able to hop in the car and go out whenever we need a change of scene. My sisters are also stay at home mums and my mum doesn’t work either so I was regularly popping into one of their houses to say hello. Without a car I relied on my mum inviting me over and had her come and pick me up with a car seat for Piglet (if I was lucky I also scored a meal too!), and then wait around for someone to be free to take me home again.
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Part of the joy of being self employed is the ability to do what I want when I want. I’m not used to being restricted to plans and schedules, being told when I can or cannot do anything. If I wanted to go grocery shopping in the morning I can, but if I change my mind at the last minute and want to go later in the day then that’s fine – it’s my call. I can drop everything and take Piglet to the park. It’s up to me.
With no car I suddenly felt very restricted. I had to ask for help, wait for others to be able to pick us up. It was much more difficult without a car to do anything spontaneously.
Overall I felt my independence had been taken away. I needed my parents to drive me around again like I was a teenager. My mum took Piglet and I to the GP so he could get his vaccinations. My Dad drove me to and from my kettlebells class. If I wanted to do anything or go anywhere Monday – Friday during working hours I had to ask for help.
Do you have a car? How do you get around with your kids?
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