Mental Wellbeing, Parenting

The Stength of a Mother 

I haven’t been able to blog in what seems like ages! It hasn’t been that long… I think my last post was about a month ago. Finding the time to blog the past few weeks has been tricky. When I don’t get the chance to blog I start to feel a bit down in the dumps because it’s my hobby, that little something I have for myself, an opportunity to have a break from being in Mummy mode and more importantly I can write down all my thoughts and feelings instead of keeping them locked in my head, it’s great therapy. Anyway I’m rambling on. I have started writing this blog post to reflect on the past week, boy it’s been a tough one! Parenting really does throw curve balls and challenges constantly, this past week has been the ultimate test of survival for us all in the Hendry household! It started a week ago little Finley started feeling unwell, he was vomiting and so poorly. Hugo is teething and had an unsettled week and Adam, well he needed to get to school and help with the mountain of homework he has now that has in P5.

This is the first time having two kids under two that I have experienced one child being ill. I am not going to sugar coat it, it was a struggle. Trying to split myself between the two was an impossible task. I felt so guilty that Finley couldn’t cuddle on my knee all day wrapped in a blanket having all my attention. Instead numerous times, I had to lie him on the sofa on his own as he cried, while I had to lift a screaming Hugo who needed my attention too. They both needed me and Adam needed me too, to sit with him and listen to his reading,  go over homework and to ask how he’s been. Due to the younger boys being out of sorts they weren’t napping or sleeping at night. Both younger boys pretty much cried all day the past week, and if one stopped crying then the other one started crying. I was pretty much listening to constant crying for days on end. I tried everything to restore calm, routine and some sort of control over what was happening, but when a little one is sick routine just goes out the window. As hard as it is not having a routine (it completely throws me) I just had to try and cope with all the chaos around me. I felt overwhelmed, stressed and helpless. It felt as though I was being pulled in all different directions like a ragdoll being flung about by a hyper toddler. I felt guilty that I couldn’t give all my attention to all my children equally and meet their individual needs, especially Finley the one who was sick and needed me most.

The week went on and Finley wasn’t getting better, in fact getting worse not eating, drinking very little, refusing to move and lying on the sofa. I was very worried so I rang the GP and when we chatted on the phone he said it would be best to get him checked up at hospital, so off we went. Loaded with the changing bag on my back, Hugo in the carrier, Finley in the buggy off we went to the hospital. I will admit I had a little cry to myself because of a few things. (1) Worrying about Finley, not knowing what was wrong with him and hoping that he will start to feel better  (2) The thought of heading up to the hospital on my own with the younger boys knowing there will be a waiting time, Hugo needing a bottle and wondering how the hell I’m going to manage the whole situation. Luckily I have the most fantastic friends who helped me out with getting Adam collected from school, so I didn’t have to worry about not making it on time to collect him.

There was a moment when I was standing in the hospital waiting room. Rocking side to side, covered in Hugo’s puke, pushing Finley in the buggy trying to keep him settled. I felt lonely, the loneliness that rears its head from time to time when you are a stay at home Mum. I felt lonely because my kids are my responsibility and when your child is sick and unwell that feeling of responsibility is overwhelming. You just want to help them and you want to know how to help them. I didn’t know how to, I just needed reassurance to know I was doing my best and everything would be fine. Thankfully the boys were settled the entire time, and Finley was seen really quickly. It turns out he has an ear infection, tonsillitis and with being so poorly, he’s slightly dehydrated. We got some medicine to put in his drinks to keep him hydrated, and the doctor advised us to just keep giving calpol and nurofen for the swelling and the temperature. Nearly a week on he is slowly feeling better, he is eating again, playing, singing and wanting to wrestle Adam. It’s so great to see the hyper playful Finley making a comeback. We missed his fun-loving personality so much! Hugo’s gums seemed to have settled too, and he seems much happier. I might jinx things by saying this but I think normality is starting to resume again.

One thing I have realised this past week is that Mothers have an incredible strength. A strength I think that is instilled in us from the minute we are pregnant. A strength that we don’t even realise we have or give ourselves enough credit for. A strength that powers you through the tough days and nights. You may not think are doing a great job and you may feel helpless and exhausted, but do you know what? Even if you have had 2 hours sleep you still get up and care for your baby, keeping them alive that in itself is amazing. I repeat you are keeping another human alive!! Never mind the 1001 other things we cram into our days. If you are reading this and you’ve had a tough day, week, month in the world of parenthood just remember “Tough times don’t last, tough people do” and us Mum’s are made of tough stuff.