For some reason there is this part of me that wants to appear totally in control around health visitors, like they are judging every aspect of my parenting in that two-minute appointment and so everything needs to go smoothly! Well, not on this occasion! Jonas was about six months old and I had taken him to get weighed. I had accidentally ordered pull up nappies on the online shop and this was his first time wearing them. I took Jonas into the room, putting him on the changing mat and he emptied his bowels so much that it looked like three weeks worth had come out in one go! Well this new mummy did the only thing she could think of with nappies without the sticky bits, pull them down! Well, as I pulled them down the entire contents (I won’t go into too much detail for all those squeamish ladies) went everywhere! I’m talking on his hands, legs, feet, my hands and all over the changing mat kind of everywhere! I then started the difficult task of cleaning up this explosion, feeling incredibly flustered whilst the health visitor and her assistant watched me, standing silently. She then gave me one piece of wisdom which stands me in good stead to this day “you can tear the pull up nappies on the side so they come off easily.” I felt so embarrassed and so not looking like the in control, got it all covered, nothing phases me kinda mummy I wanted to look like!
Have you ever felt overwhelmed as a parent? I know I have! There have been many times that I have desperately needed a situation resolved, like the time when he was still waking five times a night at eight months. Or the times that until he was about five months he didn’t consistently sleep in the day. Or there’s been times I’ve felt overwhelmed by different advice on feeding techniques, or discipline. People offer advice but they don’t know our children like we do, they don’t know what is specifically the best thing for them. There have been times I have listened to advice and tried all the methods advised and yet still seen no change. I’ve needed an answer!
A very wise mother of three once said “we are not going to have the terrible two’s in our house!” We had just been discussing how there can be a lot of negativity around parents. Many parents seem to want to warn you of the hardships to come. It’s almost as if when people have had a hard experience in a certain area of parenting, they like to tell you that you will have the same.
There’s a lot of negative warnings that if we are not careful we can almost come to accept without giving it a second thought! One of these is the so called “terrible two’s”. Now this wise lady, whom is someone I have a lot of respect for, refused to have these in her house. She refused to look at the challenges of toddlers through a negative light. Now I understand the sentiment behind this “terrible two’s” statement. I appreciate there are certain things that toddlers do around the age of two which can be particularly challenging, and perhaps this is the first age where we really start to see our children willingly testing us. But the point is this, I think when we start to agree with negative statements like this we can almost find ourselves in the position of finding things hard before we even start!
I decided to call my blog ‘Making Space’. Why, because in my opinion since becoming a mummy I find every day’s challenge is about making space! Making space to do all those necessary baby chores: washing bottles, changing nappies, making meals, feeding meals, cleaning copious amounts of food thrown on the floor after said meals, all those things that have to happen each day. Then there’s making space for the household essentials, clearing up after breakfast, lunch, dinner, washing, hanging washing, putting away the washing, cleaning… you all know the ones! Then there’s making space for the essentials with my boy: playtime, cuddle time, story time, time to teach him, sing to him, take him out. Time to be loud, to be quiet, to laugh, time to have fun, time to discipline. Before you even realise it the day can be full of things, and you haven’t even had time for you. Now some mums may say “what’s that?” but in my opinion this is essential. I spend my day giving my all to my son, rushing around to try and squeeze in all those necessary things, none of which can budge, and I need time out too.