Having children, especially small children, can often mean missing out on things – all those birthdays, hen parties, weddings, functions and events – even a blog awards ceremony – that have the audacity to occur when you’re caught up in life with a baby. This has happened me, these last few years, more times that I can count. You name it, I’ve probably missed it but that’s just a part of motherhood – especially with little ones who have an affinity for boob-on-draught and limited childcare options. It was just an aspect of motherhood that I had to adjust to and in that adjustment I have developed a number of coping mechanisms to help me deal with the inevitable cases of FOMO – Fear Of Missing Out.
Any one of the following methods can help ease the sting of missing out:
1. Ignorance is Bliss: simply pretend it’s not happening. Ignore your friends and family, ignore all social media posts about said event. Do not discuss it with anyone. As far as you’re concerned there is nothing on that day and no one else will be doing anything more exciting than staying at home – just like you.
2. Pretend you can go: don’t pretend to other people – that would just be weird – but it’s quite OK to pretend to yourself. Ponder every possible scenario that might make it possible; maybe you could book a hotel nearby to run back and forth for feeds, bring your baby – it’ll probably be loud and no one will notice. Convince yourself there is a possibility, it’ll make the run up to the event much easier.
3. Go to the event – from your couch: immerse yourself in the event in every way possible. Utilise social media, use every appropriate hashtag, follow everyone you know who’s at the event, see and know so much about the event from the screen of your phone/laptop/tablet that it’s as if you are there – nothing missed!
4. Acceptance: any of the previous techniques will work but I think it’s safe to say they may not be the healthiest of approaches to anything in life. Ultimately, the most appropriate, but possibly most difficult, coping mechanism is acceptance. Simply accept you can’t go and move on. Don’t avoid anything to do with the event but also don’t obsess and feel like you need to know absolutely everything that happened either. Carry on as normal.
The key point to remember with any of these methods is that time is constantly moving and life is constantly changing. There will come a time when an event, like an awards ceremony, will come up (I hope!) and I’ll simply go. I look forward to that time but I’m also acutely aware that it will probably be upon me faster than I ever thought possible so, for right now, I’m happy to watch from the side-lines cuddling my little ones. In fact I can already see myself at an event, some time in the future, wishing I was at home, snuggled up, with my girls.