Today we are mostly boobin’ and cuddling! 

How is everyone else coping today? I think we have a few back teeth coming through that are causing this little bundle to want boobies and up-cuddles all day. I need my hands to cook for Noah,  so thankfully we know how to rock a back carry! I also think the thing of stroking an animal makes you feel calm works with a little person. I always feel better when I have had an up-cuddle and I know I have helped Winnie to feel better.  Yay baby (toddler) wearing, we are not letting bad anxious moods rule today!!

What they don’t tell you

Being a mum is bloody tough, no one tells you that you give so much more of yourself than just your body and sleep. In the parenting books it tells you basically how to keep a small person alive and if you read more, then you can also teach them sign language and to build rocket ships and stuff. All super helpful and positive. What the books don’t tell you is that you will most likely completely forget who you are and how to look after yourself. These books and advice, you only look for when you have hit the need for them. How many mum’s google, ‘why am I so angry?’ or ‘is it ok to not like my kids today/this week/at all?’ it seems that there is quite a few of us that have anxiety or depression and no one in the big wild world knows because we are so good and putting on the happy mum face or putting the “I’m just tired” plaster on it. I know at the moment that I am not ok, I know that I feel physically beaten up when I argue with Noah or Winnie won’t stop screaming and wanting milk. My head hurts, my chest feels tight and I feel dizzy. Physical effects of a mental health condition that there is so little information on unless you know to search for it. I wouldn’t change my babies for the world but at the moment I am not dealing with this stage of Parenthood brilliantly. I don’t want to be angry, avoid playing with them or feel too tired to be the mum they deserve. I hope talking about this today gives me the moment of clarity that I need to make some time for myself. Do some Pilates and breath for a few minutes a day and find a bit of peace that I can go back to in moments where there isn’t any, do something creative and try to find the happy in the worst times. 

It doesn’t last forever. It doesn’t last forever! 

What a difference a day ( and some deep breaths) makes.

The last few days have been a bit of a struggle to keep our little ship afloat. Noah seems to be determined to get a reaction from me (by ANY means) and it has been pretty bloody exhausting to balance on the knife edge. If you have a very free spirited 3 year old, I’m sure you understand what I mean!

From spitting full on in his little sister’s face when I’m not looking, to kicking the dog and everything in-between. Honestly I haven’t been able to take my eyes off of him this week for fear of him hurting someone 😦

Yesterday I realised that maybe actually he does need me a little bit more than I thought. I spoke to a lovely helpful member of the children’s centre on Monday and she reminded me of all the things I already know, but I need to hear. 

Things like young children usually do 1 ‘good’ thing to 20 ‘naughty’ thing in a day. It’s a case of picking your battles with the 20 things, and praising the 1 thing until you are sick of your own voice. I know this, I also know that he isn’t ‘naughty’. I hate that word, I hate that it can taint a child’s view of themselves and they can end up feeling shame and turn in to a self-fulfilling prophecy. I do not want Noah to think, “they think I’m naughty and it gets me attention, it’s easier than being ‘good’.”

So I let myself stop worrying about the washing that doesn’t end and played on his trampoline with him and Oswin. He was so surprised and happy to have me there that he kept kissing me and saying I’m the best jumper ever. What more could you hope for? 

Today I woke up ready to be the positive and gentle parent I want to be. I don’t want to be the mum who says no just out of habit and to hurry him because I think he’s taking too long. Today I tried again and will no doubt loose my temper and have to try again another day. The thing is, today, I had an observer. I had my family friend’s daughter with me, she is 11 but wise beyond her years and a fantastic help with little ones. 

Today she said to me, after a whole day of seeing how I talk to my kids and how I deal with their demands and tantrums, “you are such a happy person, you’re like sunshine”. She said I don’t let noah get to me and I don’t get tough when they don’t listen to me and I’m not at all like her mum. 

To begin with I did the are you mad? Laugh. I had no idea why she thought I was so happy when I feel like I am in my own little anxiety filled storm cloud most days. But then I looked back through the many points in my day where I have had to battle with Noah, break up fights in soft play and deal with winnie constantly trying to undress me whist shouting “boobies, Yeh, boobies?” in public. I realised that actually I was pretty calm, we dealt with each issue without shouting or threats. We made races out of getting in the car or putting shoes on and had the ‘one more play’ before we left the playground. Noah didn’t fight me, I spoke to him like a very clever child, not a naughty toddler and he responded brilliantly.

 I’m not saying this always works but God it’s nice to be told I’m doing OK. Even if it is by an 11 year old! 
I’m goin to do my best to ignore the behaviour I know only appears when he is tired or wants my attention and flood him with praise and attention as much as I can from now on. It’s hard work but jesus, arguing with a 3 year old takes years off your life I’m sure! They do not back down. 

We have walked in the common, made a bed outside and have eaten quite a lot of popcorn. They were both asleep by 8 without a battle and I don’t feel like crying. Let’s see what we can get up to tomorrow! 

A picture is worth a thousand words

 To be honest it may be more than a thousand. This photo shows how cute my little creations are, that I adore them and that they are happy little soles.

What it doesn’t show is that this week already I have struggled to be a gentle mummy, it doesn’t show that winnie has thrush on her tongue which she has passed to me through feeding so my nipples are now so sore I have given up on a bra, but still need a bit of comfort so a sports bra it is. (I’ve used it maybe twice for actual exercise).  It doesn’t show that in desperation to get Noah to just be nice and stop acting like he’s taken speed, I got him an 8ft trampoline which cost more money than I have, but I figured was cheaper than counciling. It also doesn’t show that at 10am this morning I hadn’t even had a wee yet but my lovely little bundles were on their second breakfast… Minus the cornetos that I threw away because Noah wouldn’t stop screaming for them and had just punched me so I cut my losses and threw them away. Regretting it now, they were good. Also there’s no way it could show that I didn’t eat anything until about 10 tonight because I was too busy/stressed and then my attempt at ‘nutrition filled’ oven chips consisted of me pouring vinegar in to my hand because I’m too bloody tired and though it was the salt!

However this photo definitely does show my greasy unstyled hair and yesterdays eyeliner smudged under my eyes due to me having no time to give any shits how I look today.

The hardest thing about how happy this photo looks, even though I look on the verge of turning in to a zombie, it that my beautiful little people, as amazing and strong willed as they are, have exhausted me to the point where my nerves are frazzled and my hands don’t work.

I have a condition which affects my nerves and muscles and stress speeds the process up, usually just for a few days but recently I can’t get a break. My own kids are making me feel weak to the point of not being able to make a cup of tea without dropping pretty much everything I touch is bloody hard.

I’m hoping tomorrow brings a bit of light and Noah maybe finds his empathy that is hopefully around here somewhere, mummying is bloody hard people, stay strong 💪. If kids are fed, clothed and smell OK, your doing alright, if you have had a shower and can remember what day it is then you are winning!
Jess x

Anxiety sucks! 

They melt my heart ♥. 

On days like today when my anxiety is so high that it is just making me feel angry and the slightest thing is turning me in to a shouty mummy, I know I need to appreciate moments like this so much more. 

I have no car today, no plans and get to just enjoy these two by myself. For a few minutes I feel greatful for that but then the next I just want to run away. 

Why does anxiety like to make you just not appreciate anything you have or special moments? 

It doesn’t help that I really haven’t slept for a couple of nights but I think maybe I will try and persuade Noah to watch the new #iceage so I can close my eyes for a bit 😴. #siblings #capturethemoment #makingmemories #garden #naptime #brotherandsister #mummyblogger #mumblog #parentblogger #parenting  #pblog 

Good days are rare but they exist!

Yesterday I woke up and Noah was in a lovely (not argumentative) mood, his cup was full of love because I left his bedroom gate open so he could go and cuddle nanny when he woke up. This made a huge difference to his happiness, more so than I realised. He was cuddly and helpful and generally a breath of fresh air compared to his usual morning self.

It kicked the day off to a calm start, which is really very needed in our house. I did a quick shop in Aldi after taking him to nursery then came home and decided instead of putting pressure on myself to ‘get things done’ I was actually going to enjoy the sunshine and spend time with Winnie.

We opened the back door and welcomed in the sunshine and the warmth. Winnie’s face instantly told me this was exactly what she needed after a few days of me working and leaving her with daddy and nanny. I felt my heart lift and my brain just went quiet. It was peaceful and I found myself laughing with her and silly things and actually seeing her.

I think a bit part of this achievement was not having my phone, that makes me feel a bit shit. I haven’t got  my phone charger at the moment so I’m sharing one. This makes me more conscience of how much I’m using it and you know what…thank god. I didn’t realise it was stealing time, on days when I feel like I don’t have enough hours in the day or I haven’t had time to play with the little ones, I dread to think what my phone usage would tell me.

Why do we let something to small and man made take over from making precious memories and hearing our babies laugh? I use my phone for everything, endless notes, shopping lists, reading articles, music, the time…I could go on for days. As we speak I’m on my laptop to make a point to myself of how much nicer it is to type rather than use my phone. I am making a change this week, I’m wearing a watch so I don’t need to keep checking my phone, I’ve bought myself a little not pad to write lists and plans in, I have even got Matt to realise what distractions can do to our kids behaviour and how much they find comfort from us. He read an article that I sent him and came home from work last night, quickly got changed and came and played in the garden with us, paddling pool and all! I noticed when I walked in the house that he has put his phone above the tv, making sure he wouldn’t be distracted by notifications.

The rest of the evening I kept checking with myself in a ‘ are you sure nothing is worrying you or pissing you off? really? are you sure?’ but there wasn’t, and if there was, it was issues that I couldn’t change at this point in time or improve by myself and I managed to just let them stay at the back of my mind.

This normally isn’t possible for me to do, I have very bad anxiety and at times things like planning for a holiday over a month away causes me to not be able to think about the day ahead of me. I like to plan, I like to know what’s coming my way and feel helpless if I can’t control it in some way. Yesterday I just let go of things and it was like being on a spa day. I went to bed last night and I smiled at how light I felt.

Is this what normal people feel like every day? I am hoping this is a start of how things will be now, instead of a rare day of being able to breath.

My god the sun helped!