Mental Wellbeing, Parenting

All the Emotions- Part 2


Hope you are all doing good my word January is sooo cold!! Bring on Spring!
Anyway here it is as promised, see blog post- All the emotions part 1. My ramblings on when parenthood was a little tough going for me. I’ll tell you something it’s a constant learning curve this parenting thing, So here it goes….

People say all sorts of things to you when you have a baby don’t they?

“You’re baby will sleep 7-7 when they start solids”- no he didn’t his sleep got worse!!

” Have a pitch black room and DON’T lift him, let him cry”- no terrible crying it out he turns into the exorcist and we all get stressed.

“Get a nightlight”

“Play music”

“Get a diffuser”
Believe me I have read everything, tried everything, Gina Ford’s book was getting flung out the window at one point. If someone said “wear a grass skirt and do the conga 10 times” if it made Finley sleep I would do it.

What is going on? We had a routine!
Finley has had a bedtime routine since he was 6 weeks old bath, bottle, bed.
After the dark first 12 weeks of silent reflux (where I was actually considering signing myself in to the local mental hospital as a retreat ) he slept amazing most nights 7pm-6am, we thought we had this baby thing sussed.

It seemed to start around the 6 month mark when he started developing more skills such as sitting up, babbling and weaning.
Before that his life was pretty much milk and sleep.

So fast forward to now and we are still very much in a strange sleep world. Its the going to sleep part that he struggles with and its frustrating especially when he has been up from 5.30, its now 7.30 and he still refusing- my energy and patience is low, I know he knows I’m weak!!
Finley cannot deal with wakening up during sleep, if he coughs, rolls over,  flip sake even his own fart disturbs him he just can’t get back to sleep again and so it starts, he cry’s sorry screams to be lifted and brought into our bed – yep our fault another thing I read I shouldn’t do but at 3am I need sleep so I bring him in. 

I should know by now..
Finley is my second baby, I have been through this, I should know what to do- again mum guilt and putting myself under pressure, why do us mum’s do this?
I never needed to bring Adam into my bed, Adam slept 7-7, I would never of dreamt of lying on a hard bedroom floor, so he could see me from his cot. Here I am doing it with Finley.
I have realised that’s my first mistake I HAVE to stop comparing them. That alone is causing me to stress out. They are totally different- I have to accept that.

But now there’s an issue, it’s not just 3am anymore, it’s 11pm or 10.30pm or complete refusal to go into the cot totally. Every night is different no night is the same but since it’s started happening earlier and earlier it’s taking its toll on me. 

I want my evenings for myself

It’s exhausting and frustrating. The evening is my time, well at least I want it to be. Especially on days when I’ve been up from 5am and I’ve spent every minute with Finley singing songs, changing nappies, collected Adam from school, made the dinner, all the housework, I could go on but you get the gist.
By the time evening rolls round I just want to sit down and eat chocolate and have some space is it too much to ask?
I give my all to him and more and I’m exhausted, I give my all to the whole family.

Oh the stress!!
I get stressed and stress breeds stress, Finley and everyone  can sense it from me I know he can.
My stiff shoulders, tone in my voice, my huffing and puffing, my demanding “go to bloody sleep”.  Everyone feels it and I don’t like the fact that the whole thing turns me into a grumpy bitch from hell. Of course when I’m like that Finley cries more, and refuses even more to go to sleep and the other evening we both came to blows. He screamed for hours, he would not go to sleep in his cot, he did not want held, he was just screaming it was after 8pm which is early for some I know but I had tried for over an hour and a half on a day which he had been up from 5.30 with a 1 hour nap – we were all beyond exhausted.
I tried all the techniques I have read that will “work” which to be honest just made me feel worse- what the hell am I doing wrong ?

Breaking Point
Completely worn out I turned into a demon possessed yelling at Daniel. Telling him how miserable I am- which is totally not true but at that moment right there I was miserable.
 I lifted Finley out of his cot and lay him beside me in our bed after all that’s what this whole meltdown he was having was about, so I gave in, his screaming turned to sniffles he was out of breath from crying.
I FELT AWFUL a wave of guilt engulfed me, all he wanted was to lie beside me, he didn’t even want held just to lie beside so he wasn’t alone. Within a few minutes after the hours he had spent crying he calmly fell asleep,when he was totally over I lay him in his cot.
Of course once he was sound asleep I broke down upset and frustrated that I had put us both through unnecessary stress. I cried hard, but I needed that cry to let it all out sometimes there is only so long you can hold it together and you break, well I broke alright I was in a total state. I  looked  and felt like a woman possessed.

Changing it up

 I am no longer going to put myself or Finley under pressure with sleep. He is not a robot some nights in order to go over, or if he wakes up in the middle of night, he just needs to lie beside me no matter what the websites or the books say.
 It doesn’t matter if I didn’t do it with Adam, that’s what Finley needs what’s so wrong with that? He doesn’t have a dummy or a baby bottle he just needs comfort and reassurance that I am there, and why would I not give him that?

Going with the flow
I’m sure in time we will figure out a way that works. There will be a day when he is all grown up and no longer needs or wants to lie in my bed beside me and I will be missing these days and nights no matter how tough they can be.

After completely losing my mind over the whole sleep saga and wandering about the house sobbing, I ran a hot bath and turned my run down shack of a bathroom into a spa, with my lush bath bomb, and lit my favourite woodsage and seasalt Jo Malone candle. Which I know is like burning actual money but hey sometimes you need a bit of luxury, and I totally deserved it.

Just Breathe…
I just took the time to breathe in and out, smell my gorgeous candle and relax and tell myself it will all fall into place, that I’m doing a great job. It really helped, I felt so much better just those 20 minutes in my own headspace, in my make shift spa was all I needed.
I’ve made a promise to myself, to spend more time on ME, even if it is just 10 minutes a day,or lying on top of the bed instead of mopping the kitchen floor.
I need to recharge my batteries, as when Mummy loses her shit the whole house descends into chaos. Making time for me has become part of my daily routine for 20 minutes in the evening even if its just sitting on my bed painting my nails, I’m looking after ME- the washing can just wait a little longer.
So if you have been feeling like I did stressed to the absolute max ready to run through a field screaming (naked with police chasing you, just to add dramatics to the picture) – make time for YOU. Even if you can only squeeze in 10 minutes a day, make it a priority. Oh and treat yourself to a very expensive Jo Malone candle, it will make you feel better FACT!


2 thoughts on “All the Emotions- Part 2

  1. One day Kathryn when the kids are more manageable I can see you become a published writer. Ive always thought that when Ive read your thoughts. My first child Michael was the `perfect child`, the one the books write about. I thought because he was like this that it was because I was such a brilliant mother. All those difficult children, well it must be because their parents can't parent. I looked down on all these parents with superiority and smugness. Then eight
    years later along came my second child…….with a … lets see how good you are with this one. She was the complete opposite and I couldn't figure out were I was going wrong. I would go to bed with baby taming books etc and read to a new every word on every page but it was all in vain. I was given the ultimate challenge to tame this wild child. Did I achieve, who came out on top. Well it wasn't me. Her first sleep through night was when she was four. Up until she two she woke on average four times a night and every night she ended up in our bed so that finally we had peace. She finally left our bed when she was eight years old. Mind you after our first born was able to get out bed he slept in our bed until he was about seven. My second was stubburn, defiant, headstrong, you name it. I gave up selecting her clothes when she was three and had to go out with her looking like she lived on the streets. My friends would often comment especially when she would insist on her own makeup application (not a good look when you are going out to diner with family) but we survived. All what you say and feel I totally get and in the end I gave in and went with her flow and it made for an easier life. Now she is twenty and a fantastic, beautiful girl and I wonder sometimes how I got through. friend should often say omg what is she going to be like as a teenager. I would reply well one of us is going to be leaving home and I think it will be me. Apart from when she was 13/14 she has been brilliant. She is kind, caring, thoughtful, generous etc. Kathryn you are doing a fantastic job. Keep up the great work and when time permits keep up your creative writing. You have a gift and telling the truth helps other mums. wish I had of had someone like you when my daughter was a baby. Noeleen

  2. Hi Noeleen
    Thankyou so much for taking the time and writing such a beautiful comment.
    You have given me such comfort knowing that it is all just phases and each child approaches them differently no two are the same,and that it will be ok in the end.
    I will take your advice and go with the flow life is too short to worry about were they sleep or at what time as long as they are happy and healthy.
    For now I will enjoy the closeness that he needs it may not last forever before long he will be a big man lol.
    Take care and bug hugs

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