Rollercoaster

I don’t want this blog to become a place for me to mope and be sad with everything that is happening; because who wants to read that but also Robin wouldn’t want that for me. It won’t change what’s happened and it also will benefit no one. Inevitably there will be moments where I am honest with how we are doing because there’s no point writing a blog about family life if I’m not being real about our experiences. I’m sorry if people find it hard to read but it’s definitely a lot harder to live it. We don’t want sympathy just love, support and your amazingly kind words. Luckily we have Beatrice who brings moments of sunshine to our lives at the minute and is one of the things that is keeping us going.

The amazing support from friends, family and even people we’ve don’t know has been amazing. Shared stories of their own losses, a listening ear, food, tears alongside ours and so many little gifts to get us through. Thank you so much to everyone who has supported us. We love you all.

It has been a rollercoaster this last week. I have days of complete numbness when I have nothing left and then I feel guilty for not crying. I have other days of being an emotional wreck and some days I can seem normal but something will just trigger a waterfall. These are all normal parts of grief but that makes it no less difficult.

Beatrice has been a joy to have with us. We hug her that little bit tighter (which only makes her shout at us) and maybe spoil her just a little bit at the moment. She brings sunshine to our lives, she truly is what her name means, ‘bringer of joy’. But my ability to deal with her bad moments has diminished. She loves to just shout at the minute and scream and not only is it headache inducing but I find myself begging her to stop without fully engaging with her. She’s probably playing off our emotions but when you know she can say please and show you what she wants it is difficult to manage. I feel bad but I know it’s a phase and she’ll have us back fully engaged as we work through this difficult time.

She brought much laughter yesterday when Ian decided to use the count to 3 parenting method. It had no effect on her speed of descending the stairs whatsoever (she was too busy chatting, yes she’s like me) but it did result in her counting to 3 with Ian. Which I’m sure would infuriate an angry parent but was the cutest thing I’ve heard. You can’t help but have that melt your heart. It definitely makes up for the tantrums. I look forward to many more moments like that.

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What is going on?!

It’s easy to feel overwhelmed at the minute with the news. I dread turning it on each day. So much death and destruction. Manchester and London attacks. Bombings in Tehran and yet more civilian deaths in Syrian fighting. Then add to that the awful fire in the flats in London. The pain I feel for the things these people are going through is nowhere near the pain they are experiencing. I can’t imagine what they are going through. 

It scares me to think that this is the world my child will live in and there is nothing I can do. I turn to God and ask why. I pray that things will get better. One positive is seeing how communities pull together at times like this. It really does bring out the best in people. But one thing gets to me. Where are the social media cries for solidarity with those in the middle east suffering war and persecution?  Where are there crowdfunding campaigns and hashtags? Where is the news updates about that? 

At times like this I hold on to my little girl just that bit tighter.  I try to busy myself so I can’t hear the constant thoughts of what these people must be feeling and their pain. I try to enjoy the small things be it my daughters laugh, smile, hugs, even her tantrums and teaching her that soil isn’t for eating.  

What no one tells you about being a parent

Before having Beatrice I thought I had a pretty good idea what being a parent would be like.  I’m a neonatal nurse (look after premature babies) and I have friends with children. Now cue the knowing look from parents that as a childless person I found patronising. But truly I had no clue. 

Now I could sprout off a whole list of things like: lack of sleep (I know everyone says it), no time to myself, always having a mini me attached, not being able to eat hot food or have a drink, but the biggest thing for me has been the amount of love I have for my baby and the pain and fear that comes with it.

I feel like the hulk at times being a mum. The feeling that I would do anything to keep my baby safe really surprised me with it’s strength. I feel like I could do anything. Being away from her causes me physical pain and even though I’m desperate for time to myself the minute I’ve left her I’m desperate to be back with her. And when she’s upset or in pain I can’t be bear it. And as a trained children’s nurse the sight of my daughter projectile vomiting broke me completely. Suddenly all my training had amounted to nothing as every little thing in my mind is the end of the world. It takes my wonderful husbands patience and kindness to try to get me thinking rationally. His most common question is “if this were your patient’s parent what would you tell them?” He is truly amazing.

And those charity adverts that show poorly or malnourished children who are living in poverty. Oh my goodness!  My heart aches for their parents and them.  For their parents because I can only imagine the distress at seeing your child like that. Which is probably why I’m now a sucker for those adverts. Sorry Ian (the husband). 

Luckily knowing that Beatrice is happy in childcare and doesn’t scream when I leave her has helped and by gradually increasing the amount I’m away from her has helped. And after being back at work on Monday I can say the distraction of my job allowed me to ignore the missing her part of me. Now I just need to work on my sadness for the day that she won’t want breastfeeding anymore or when she goes to school,  but I’ll leave them for now and focus on the moments I have with her now. Every single one is precious.