With Mr. DB and Porridge off on holiday this week we’ve had a great family week this week. (How many times can I say “week” in a sentence?)
One thing we own as a family is Lego. A considerable amount of fire rescue related sets actually, a few police sets and some other random ones (Big Bang Theory for example). Unfortunately most of it has lived broken up in a box for the last 2 years. So on Monday we started work. We sorted all the pieces by colour and then armed ourselves with instruction booklets and started building. And building. And building. We took most of the last 2 days off to go out together, mainly to test how far my husband’s anxiety would let him travel but also to see trains and do a bit of Christmas shopping (more Lego). Last night we started sorting the kids board games instead which is almost done (I can hear arguments over jigsaw pieces as I type) once that’s cleared we have a playdate then we’ll get back to Lego. It’s going to be tight to see if we can get everything built before bedtime on Sunday but we’ll do our best.
Is it school holidays were you are? What have you been up to this week?
P.S I’m hoping to post more regularly again but going to only aim for once a week to start with.
You’ve probably noticed a substantial gap between the last post and this. The reason is very simple. Post natal depression sucks.
After Porridge started school I thought (mostly because I was told it would happen) things would get easier. After all looking after 2 is easier than 3, right? Wrong! Turns out Porridge was being a little superhero when he was at home and doing loads more than I thought. Without him there is no one to stop Shreddies waking up Biscuit when she’s napping. And there’s no one to occupy Biscuit while I deal with Shreddies.
Essentially life now is harder because I’m doing more (yay for school runs and packed lunches and homework) with less help.
And the result of this is an inability to get even simple household tasks done. Doing dishes? Not unless you want to get 2 or 3 done at a time over 4 hours. Fold laundry? Only if you want it messed up as your doing it. Put breakfast dishes beside the sink? Not always do-able until someone else is home. So I feel like a failure ALL THE TIME.
Add in the fact Shreddies is a typical wild 2 year old who often runs away and, well. Is it any wonder I spent many evening in tears calling myself a bad parent?
HOWEVER. Things are slowly improving. We’re starting to get a rhythm to our days and especially our evenings. I’ve taken up running so I can get away from the kids for a bit and get some exercise. I’ve also dropped a lot of commitments (like this blog) that were adding to my stress. Now, that being said, I’m not going away forever it’s just that I may not be as regular as I had hoped.
The struggle is real but so is the fact things get better.
Take care my lovelies.
Life with my 3 kids has been hard lately. Porridge is getting violent when he angry and Shreddies refuses to share and is so clingy it’s hard to deal with. And I’m feeling like a failure as a mum.
I recently started driving lessons and rather than feeling proud or triumphant or anything I feel… Inadequate. Like I’ve been a rubbish mum to my kids, especially Porridge. I feel like I’ve let him down most of all.
Looking back I’ve spent day after day basically staring at my phone and interacting with my kids as little as possible. Without meaning to I’ve treated them like burdens and hindrances rather than the most important things in my world.
Porridge used to go to a nursery that was a 30 minute walk from our house and half way home is a park. Almost every day he would ask, often beg, to go. Almost every day I would say “No.” For weeks, months I denied him 10 minutes in the park because I couldn’t be bothered to sit on a bench. Read that back and tell me I was making the best choice for him.
Sometimes I think I say “No.” To benefit myself when a “Yes” would benefit my kids so much more.
I hate that I have become a parent who struggle to put their phone down and be with their kids. I hate that meal time conversation is so stilted that no one wants to sit a second after their plate is clear. I hate that Porridge starts school in 3 days and I feel like I’ve cheated him out of a childhood (he’s 5) because I’ve been too focused on me.
I want to change, I want to be a better mum. I just wish I knew how to make it all better and make up for all my failings so far.
Mr DB took last week off from work and for some reason whenever he is off we always get less done of our usual stuff than normal. Things like housework, exercising and blogging fall by the wayside as we do things as a family instead.
It was nice though, and productive. We painting the kitchen and hallway, did some gardening, visited relatives and bought the last of the things Porridge needs to start school (!).
Alas Mr. DB has returned to work and my life has returned to its normality of screaming children and trying to squeeze housework into nap time. Normal blog service will hopefully resume this week.
For years I have wanted to grow my own fruits and vegetables but it never seemed the right time. I did try on a few occasions to grow things in pots but it never really worked out.
When we bought our current house with it’s private back garden that gets loads of sunlight I started looking into what we could grow and where in the garden to put it. Somewhere along this journey I came across Rocket Gardens. They’re a company that provide seedlings curated into little pre-planned gardens. I loved the idea but was still torn on what to get and where to put it. I’ll admit, part of this was the thought of digging over part of the garden or building a raised bed, neither of which I felt I had the energy to do.
Then, I think it was just after Christmas, their catalogue arrived in the post and suddenly it contained something that solved not only the problem of what to get but also where to put it. They were bringing out little all-in-one children’s garden planters (unfortunately theses are currently absent from their website). So we used some of the boy’s Christmas money and ordered one.
The boy’s have loved it so far. Everything came inside the planter so we just had to set it up. It included the coir block (just add water to make the soil), plant food and all the seedlings needed. So now we have gem lettuce, spinach, rocket, beetroot, tomatoes, strawberries and green beans all growing happily.
Or, they were, we’ve eaten most of the lettuce, spinach and rocket and the birds have been enjoying our strawberries which we’ve replanted in a separate area and covered with a net. There was also an incident where Shreddies thought he would harvest the, still green, tomatoes for us so we’re waiting on them growing back.
There is nothing quite like garden fresh produce and the kids love looking after their little plot themselves (and I quite like the smug feeling of telling people about it all). Next year we’re planning to grow a little more, probably more salad leaves, tomatoes, strawberries and maybe try a few autumnal crops as well.
Do you grow anything?
I look to you and your tear filled eyes,
And struggle not to let mine copy,
I bend, I kneel,
My arms open, your arms open,
Your arms close, my arms close,
A precious moment, a loving embrace,
A mother’s hug.
I look to you and your shut tight eyes,
And let mine do the same,
I breath, I wait,
My heart opens, your heart opens,
Your hurt heals, my hurt heals,
A precious moment,
A loving embrace,
A mother’s hug.
And, in fact, it usually does.
Since Porridge finished nursery for the summer Shreddies has missed his usual Mummy Time during Biscuit’s morning nap. As a result he’s become extremely clingy. Biscuit in turn is going through that 6 month separation anxiety thing where even crossing the room without her elicits screams.
Add in Porridge being a typical high spirited, somewhat self-centred 5 year old and by last Friday I had had enough of this little army I had created myself. In fact I was probably done by Thursday but pushed through anyway because that’s what mum’s do.
So on Saturday morning, completely spent and struggling to cope with any human interaction let alone tiny hands touching me, you would think I’d just send Mr. DB out with the kids and get down me time.
Nooo, stupid brain decided that doing so would mark me as a terrible parent. That my failure to cope was a mark of how bad a mother I am. Essentially my Post Natal Depression (PND) kicked in and made me feel terrible. And there is nothing like really needing a break from a situation and also feeling guilty about needing the break.
PND sucks on so many levels and in so many ways but the worst is when it hits you at your lowest making you believe that you are only that low because you’re a bad parent. Like there aren’t any other factors. Even if you are rocking motherhood in every other way it can make one slip-up feel like it’s time to pack your kids off because anyone would be better at looking after them than you. And that is not true. Not ever. Sometimes, I wish I remembered that.