Ah Mumlife. It’s a rollercoaster isn’t it; highs and lows, ups and downs, accomplishments and meltdowns!
And with two in tow, it’s even more of a head spin.
Some days I feel like I am going at a million miles an hour yet I’m getting nothing done. Since Holly was born I’ve been a firm fan of the “winging it” club. Rather ashamedly I have to admit I don’t have much of a day time routine with her; she doesn’t have set nap times, it’s simply a case of when she’s tired she goes to sleep, be it in the car, in the pram in the garden or if we’re having a really winning day, upstairs in her cot.
With Josh I was quite regimented but it was easier; it was just him and I. And the kid loved his sleep (still does)! I knew I had two hours each morning and two hours each afternoon when he’d sleep. With Holly, I know she’ll power nap around 8.30am which is a joy because it gives me half hour to get Josh and I ready for the day, and she quite often snoozes for half hour whilst Josh has his tea and I prepare bath time. But I’ve felt quite guilty that I just let her sleep anywhere and everywhere, whenever the mood suits her the rest of the time.
And there we have it…. the guilt. Everything seems to be laden in guilt. At least it has for me recently. I feel like I am constantly worrying “am I doing this right, should I do that, what would such and such do”, it’s like I am doubting myself.
Hollys sleep is just one of approximately 3675926 things I have whizzing round in my head. Other things; moving her into her own room, trying to energise myself so I can stay up beyond 9pm of an evening and actually do some writing, looking for a new house, Josh…. so much Josh. Can I find a class or a group to take him to, will I end up declining another offer of a playdate this week because I am so terrified he’ll meltdown when I’m out alone with him and Holly, will he be having a good day or a bad day, will I ever hear him say “Mummy”. Josh takes up such a vast amount of my mind and time it’s no wonder Hols just has to slot in, and thank goodness she is a relaxed baby for this very reason.
Relaxed. Now that is what I need to be. Ironically back in March I bought Fearne Cottons book, “Calm”. However I’ve not had a chance to even remotely sit and look at it and read it because I feel like I don’t have much time to just sit and read. There is no calm. But that’s just motherhood right…….
I think that amongst all the chaos, the difficulties, the challenges, we do need to make time for ourselves. And we need to cut ourselves a bit of slack for this, and for much more. So often we don’t recognise just how much we achieve in a day, we don’t give ourselves credit. I have an awful habit of saying I’m “just a stay at home Mum”. Indeed, I am a stay at home Mum but Fi, you gotta stop with the “just”. Because it is no easy job; it’s constant juggling. You’re trying to entertain a toddler and amuse a baby. You’re doing this whilst getting the washing done and mentally preparing the dinner you’ll be attempting to make later whilst bribing the toddler with cookies so you have the 20 minutes to cook. The main qualification you need for this stay at home Mum malarkey is that you must possess the patience of a saint. In your mind it will sound very simple and easy to keep a house hold running, get to the shops, cook some nice meals and soothe and entertain your demanding children. But then one child will shit themselves whilst going full throttle in the jumperoo whilst you’ll find the other contentedly amusing themselves by removing DVD’s from the cases and building them into towers! The phone will ring the second you start to do a feed, swiftly followed by the doorbell, at which point you’ll remember you need to take dinner out of the over before it is cremated. You never get to complete a task without an interruption, one that usually involves shit, wee or vomit. Your day will revolve around bodily fluids and the epic nap-time battles.
It takes a lot sometimes to step back and think about what you’ve actually achieved. If I can get through a day with Josh at home and keep him happy and he has no meltdowns I am seriously high fiving myself come tea time. I don’t tell myself enough but I am doing a good job as a Mum.
But I’m not doing a good job at slowing down. I am craving some focus, some routine and that’s something I have to take into my own hands and make happen. Life is a whirlwind so much of the time, but as someone who has always found comfort in a bit of routine and some list making, I can see that since becoming a Mummy of two I’ve succumbed to the chaos rather than finding a way to slow things down, have some balance and prevent that anxious knot I so often feel in my stomach when I feel like I’ve not got enough done.
So phase one of my plan, this week is this – I have no plans. None. Zero. I don’t know whether to feel dread or joy about this. We tend to go out every day, even with my fear of taking Josh out, I’ll still arrange to see friends we know well or we go back to the family farm where Josh can tear around for hours. But this week, nada. I need a few days at home, to do all the little things building up in my head like getting Holly settled in her own room, weaning her, doing sensory with Josh and setting up a PECs board for him, and I need that time at home for me. To drink tea that doesn’t go stone cold, to write when the kids are napping, to remind myself of my passion of writing because I think I need to get the juices flowing again.
I wouldn’t say I’ve lost myself since becoming a Mum of two, but I have lost focus, I’ve lost routine and I am now desperately craving both. Because as much as I am Mummy Fi (and utterly grateful for this) I am also Blogger Fi and that is something I am proud to be. People tell me motherhood is all about balance (usually when I’m bribing Josh with pom bears then feeling guilty for doing so!), I think life is also all about balance. And right now I need to level those scales and go from 100mph to a contended stroll.
I’m aware this blog post is rambly, it has no particular flow and I am very much writing as I think but that is one thing I love about blogging; some of my posts are like diary entries and it’s theraputic to get it all out. I guess ultimately I am telling myself to slow down, take stock and remind myself I am surviving motherhood with a challenging toddler who is having a lot of things investigated and a 5 month old who I am quite certain is allergic to sleep. And I’m doing a bloody good job at it. So maybe I’ll keep up these ranty diary type posts along with my usual blogging and perhaps they’ll do me some good.
Thanks for taking the time to read. Much love! Must go and watch Love Island…… what have I become!