Friday, 26 December 2008
To be honest it's quite nice. Everyone seemed happy with their lot, dinner turned out well, even the rotting bird carcass that is intergral to the celebrations apparently. The joys of having adult kids, they know what they want to eat. Usually we get along fine eating my vegan choices but at this time of year i relent and prepare them the meat, it's their holiday too after all. My darling daughter K was thinking on her feet when she did my shopping, she got me a bone free piece of meat that just needed wrapped and slowly cremated so that i didn't have to stick my hand up its bum or anything - now that WOULD be above and beyond the call of duty! - which made the whole process relatively painfree - for me at least, dunno about the poor bird mind, i don't even want to start thinking about that side of things. The plates were piled high with all manner of good things and we all sat together and it was a lovely part of the day - the bonus being that i didn't have to wash up as i'd cooked! Yipee! Did i mention my allergy to domestic duties? No? Well, i did now! Lol!
So, it's the night after xmas, i'm alone and remarkably at peace. The year has had highs and lows, as always but i feel that this year more so than the previous 4 or 5 there have been more highs than lows. Our situation is improving all the time, i'm learning to accept the changes as they happen and am finally allowing myself to realise that the world isn't going to end just because i can't be the bohemian wild child that i used to be anymore (surely i mean woman here? You get my drift tho') and have learned to accept my limitations instead of fighting them. It's a battle i can't win if i look at it in those terms, instead i've started to listen to my body a bit more and look at what i CAN do instead. Whatever the case, all i can do is try my best and see how it goes.
I wasn't planning to get all deep and meaningful tonight, i've got a rare chance to sleep alone (barring the dogs) in my bed and i'm going to take FULL advantage of the duvet hogging opportunities that the current situation allows. I'll get all spiritual and soul searching on you another night instead! Brightest Blessings to you all, and with that i'm off to bed!..........................
Wednesday, 24 December 2008
As i drove down the road i saw something that made me realise just how stupid my self pity actually was. Flashing blue lights, police cars, ambulances and two cars, one half the length it should be whilst the other was upside down on the wrong side of the road, personal effects scattered across the road. I don't know who these people are, i know nothing about them. All i can think about is how do you tell someone something like that? They could've been out doing their last gift delivery, almost home for the holidays? Collecting their little ones - or dropping them off - planning a bubbly bath and snuggle before tucking them up excited in bed.
I can't inagine the sadness that these families face, the pain when joy was what was expected. It made me realise how stupid and petty my 'problems' are. So my youngest kids aren't sleeping here tonight, they're safe, well and with people who love them. Instead of going to bed feeling sorry for myself i'm going to have my bath, light a candle and give thanks for the many blessings that i do have. It's just sad that it took someone elses tragedy to make me open up my eyes and give thanks for all the blessings in my life.
Brightest Blessings to you all, wishing you peace, love, health and happiness both now and throughout the whole year too....................
Tuesday, 23 December 2008
I'm finally feeling better today, it's the first day when i haven't had to go back to bed. It's taken me all day to just clean the sitting room, i ask you! It's soo infuriating, i feel as week as a kitten. Hopefully now everything is done - well, if it isn't done now it's just tough! I've got 5 of my 6 kids here now, K n C went down to my mams and did the gift giving and card exchanging for me. J and N were at their dads and L had been down there for a couple of weeks so yet again my beautiful daughter saved the day as she brought them back up here for me.
Does anyone else feel only half alive without their children around? Maybe i'm being a little dramatic but i do actually feel like i'm missing something, a part of me, when they're not here. Even though i've been fit for nothing these last couple of weeks and they needed to visit their family before xmas i feel sad when they're not around. Tonight i'll go to bed with most of my kids under my roof or a heartbeat away, apart from sweet B, he's in spain with his daddy. Lovely for him, terrible for me. they fly back on the 28th (i think, or late on the 27th). It wont be soon enough for me, although he was so excited, bless him, such an adventure.
I know this isn't up to my usual epic proportions, i'm tired still. i'd just like to thank the gentle Ariad for worrying about me, bless you and thank everyone else for their kind words.
As you all know, i'm no techno buff so i don't know how to create links, i would however like to point you towards Cage Free families blog and watch the video and read the post that accompanies it. You might be able to find your way there through my sidebar, i hope so anyway. She says a lot that NEEDS to be said about this crazy world we live in.
that's me done for now, Brightest Blessings to you all, health, peace and happiness to everyone you hold dear .....
Saturday, 6 December 2008
Ifeel that the weekend actually went better because i'd made the rules clear. It's my home and my rules, it's very rare i take a stand on anything so i think the fact that i did told them that i was deadly serious. all of you kind people who took the time to share their thought, thankyou so much, i really appreciated it...
Thursday, 4 December 2008
Smalls have been mithering the life out of me for days now to put the decorations up, i suppose i'd better put up my hands now and admit straight out, I HATE XMAS!!! Always have and likely always will. Even as a kid i can remember getting a knot in my stomach whenever i thought about it. From a young age i can remember my mam stressing about xmas. We were a big family on one not big wage and i knew from being little that it was a hard time. For one reason or another we didn't have any contact with our extended family, it was us kids, mam and dad. My dad was first a miner -until they closed the pits down that was. He then worked for british steel - until the bottom fell out of the steel industry too, Margaret Thatcher was not a popular politician in our household. One year when my dad was out of work i can remember lying awake listening to mam and dad talking about ways to stretch the little money around the lots of us. we didn't ask for big presents, we knew how things were and were glad for what we got.
I don't remember it being as bad then as it is today, am i the only one who thinks that it's getting worse each year? The prices are just ridiculous. £100 per child goes nowhere - Ha! - like i have that to spend, everything is just so expensive, i don't know where to start. I hate, hate, hate it. I really do feel sorry for the kids, if they don't get the super brain musher 3,000 other kids make fun, the one they got 6 months ago for their birthday is out of date. even the dolls are like £40 a go. It's just absolutely appalling. The adverts on the tv are just brilliant, they make me want to have some of the toys! Butterscotch the pony or something like that is something like £250! For a toy! What?!!! I would've died to get my hands on that when i was a kid, i loved all things horsey and would've traded my soul for a horse of my own. No wonder more people crack up at this time of year than any other. It's enough to make anyone depressed.
The amount of money wasted on material things at this time of the year is disgusting isn't it? We throw money away without a second thought, all the uneccesary extras, crackers, tinsel, flashy things, baubles, a new tree every couple of years whilst the other 27 that we've got bored of lie in landfill for the next million years or so. why do we feel the need to spend all this money? Why do we have to have more lights, a bigger turkey, more food and the most expensive wine? Then spend the next year working all the hours under the sun to pay it off, ignoring our kids and becoming a stranger to everyone we know? Just to start again next year? It's the biggest con ever. Meanwhile, whilst half the 'civilised' world is gorging itself into a heart attack the other half is slowly starving to death. This is one of the things that i find the most disturbing. Whilst our country grinds to a halt and nearly everyone goes on a two day gorge fest there are mams holding their dying kids for the lack of basic rights, water and food. How do so many people ignore these things and act likt they don't know or care? I know one person can't fix the world but if every one person did just one thing to help then perhaps this world would be a better place to live in.
i know there are lots of other mams - and dads too - who are realising that things are going to have to change but if we all wait until everyone else decides to do something about it then it's sadly going to be too late. Our kids need to be aware of the plight of families far away, living through warfare and famine. No matter how poor we in this western society are reckoned to be, living on state benefits, driving 2nd (or 7th) hand cars, living in rented accomodation we are not poor. we have a home, food, electric or some other form of energy and we are rich. Rich in that our families are healthy and well, our kids are free to be whatever they aspire to be, they are allowed to be young and free. For many families this is not an option. All they can hope for is food tomorrow andto live another day. Is that really living though? Or just existing?
So,what i'm trying to say here, in my usual rambling fashion, is the next time we worry that we haven't got x, y or z, STOP! THINK! Not just at xmas but all year round. when we worry 'cos we can't buy exactly what we want, when we're on stew again for tea 'cos money's tight, when we flick over the channels on tv 'cos there's nothing on, when we log on to our computers to chat with friends half way around the world, REMEMBER, there are people dying of hunger whilst we moan 'cos fuel has gone up by 3p or whatever. I know most of the people on here do have a social conscience, most of us do try and do something , however small, to make our world a better place to live in. I'm as guilty as the rest, i hate xmas 'cos i'm afraid the kids won't get enough, i worry when they want something that i struggle to give. I feel guilty if my kid can't have a new pair of trainers when his old ones still fit. My kids're blessed! We have the riches of kings! A warm home, food, clothes and the love both of each other and those around us. Who cares if Sonys profits falls by £3 million? Not me. Who cares if we can't get an x box? not me. I wouldn't want to swap what we have got and can afford for all the world. I and my family are blessed, you and yours are too. We should continue to lead by example and show people that there is another way. Who knows maybe some people might pay attention and listen. They might even be inspired to do something about it. Wouldn't that be the greatest xmas gift of all?.....
Friday, 28 November 2008
Just because i'm a liberal parent and allow my kids to express themselves how they see fit the vast majority of the time does it mean i should allow this to happen in my home? I don't feel that it's their right to sleep together in my home, she is legally under age and, i don't feel, mature enough to make responsible decisions. I feel it's my responsibility to , i don't know, protect them? Warden them? Be a kill joy? Fuddy duddy? I'm struggling here people. Am i over reacting? Should i be telling them what they can and cannot do? Should i be dictating to someone elses child what they can and can't do? Even if her mam allows other behaviour in her house? I really feel quite strongly that they shouldn't sleep together in my house, i have 3 younger children than J who i do not want to think it's ok to bring a girl/boy friend over to sleep when they're 15/16 either. I have no problem with her coming and staying the weekend, that's fine, but anything else is a no no in my book.
So help me out here ladies, what do you think? Would you feel the same way that i do? I'm going round in circles here so much that i don't know if i'm coming or going. I really appreciate any opinions you have. I used to be 16 - i know how grown up i thought i was then, even though my kids'll probably think it was millenia ago and before the ark and all that, but this is something more important than me being a party pooper. I look forward to any light you could shine on this subject, my torch appears to have run out of batteries...........
Friday, 21 November 2008
This time of year always makes me feel down anyway, before John died even, i've had s.a.d.s for years but as these two dates creep round i can feel myself hiding away. It's almost like a retreat, i start to go down in the weeks leading up to his birthday and don't start up until we pass feb 21st, when he died. For many years i didn't think about this being linked to John dying until somene else pointed it out to me, just shows how easily you can be involved in a behaviour without realising why a lot of it happens. Sometimes it really does take someone a bit detached from the situation to see the way through the trees 'cos you've stumbled around in the dark for so long you've lost the path!
I don't really like to talk to people about it too much, it's my burden to carry - not that he was ever a burden to me - i put people in a sad mood if i talk about it. I don't know if i'd like someone to be telling me about their son who died years before. When my mam talked about my twin dying when i was younger i didn't like it 'cos it made her sad and was sooo long ago - to my then 6 year old way of thinking. Please forgive me if this post puts you on a downer, i hope it doesn't spoil anyones day. Thankyou for listening and letting me vent...
Sunday, 16 November 2008
We went to bed early, full of good intentions (on my part anyway), R was flat out on the chair so L said he'd carry her up for me, off to bed we went. Ahh, lovely and tucked up, some film on - that fab i can't even remember what it was -when up came L with the girl. He crawled over the bed to put her next to me, laid her down, B put his arm over her at which point she punched him in the eye. Whoops! That wasn't going to help my early night plans one little bit. As you can imagine the B siren went off, followed by R's 'cos he pushed her. She didn't want him to touch her, he wanted to cuddle up and so on and so on....
Twenty minutes later my eardrums were bleeding and my spine felt like it was fractured in 3 different places. I'd finally calmed everyone down (only mild threats of physical violence and groundings till past puberty required) when the lovely Jean phoned. I LOVE Jean, she's one of the most wonderful people i've ever met but i knew that i was going to be on the phone for quite some time. We can talk for europe, sadly i didn't have enough energy to talk to the bathroom and back even! That's not strictly true, but had it been anyone else i'd've asked them to call back tomorrow. For the most part the kids watched the film and i chatted to Jean.
Half an hour later i recieved a surprise visit from K. This in itself is unusual in the evening but by now it's after 10.30pm, it soon became apparent why, she'd had a drinky poo and wanted to discuss the N problem. Unfortunately she came armed with a huge tube of blue smarties! Then produced a chocolate gateau! So by 11.30 we were all sat on my bed eating gateau while using my bed as a tramopline- whee! Great fun!!! That was until they flopped down and R started pushing B with her feet. They were both laughing around and giggling when R must've had a burst of superhuman strength (she's considerably smaller than him) and pushed him off the end of the bed! Only playing it had to be said, BUT he managed to fall awkwardly and bashed his head onto a video box right on his temple. NOT good. It didn't actually bleed but it turned blue immediately and looked like it should bleed. the poor lad. R was beside herself, she hadn't meant to hurt him, it was in fun and she felt terrible that he was hurt but that didn't really help him much at this point. there wasn't a lot i could do other than hold him and comfort him, i was nearly in tears myself. We'd been having so much fun with the gateau and smarties and bouncing and then sadness.
I didn't let him go to sleep for quite some time (hence the mam and boy lie in) so it was after 2am before we went to sleep. Next week i'm not planning to go to bed before midnight, early nights seem to have a way of turning round and biting me on the bum!....
Saturday, 15 November 2008
Our quandry with regards to the whole h.s. thing is no closer to resolution. R has taken it upon herself to keep asking me which day is she going back to school? How many days now? I AM still going aren't i? Go ahead, just kick a mam while she's down why don't you?!! B has been surprisingly quiet on the subject too, he hasn'tsaid he wants to stay home either, he's actually looking forward to seeing his friend E on monday. All that stress and worry for naught! I very much doubt that i've heard the last of it but for now i'm ging to sit back and see what happens.
J n N have gone down to our hometown to see their dad this weekend. They have a half sister, Sarah, who has a little boy who's probably close to one now so they're looking forward to playing grown up Aunty N and Uncle J. Sarah has had a falling out do with her partner so has moved back to her dads so that'll be cosy then.
N is going through a difficult time, on tuesday she lost her temper and stood up to me screaming into my face that i had no right to order her around! This achieved by asking her to come and sit with the dogs whilst i went to J's presentation evening to pick up his certificates for his exams that he did really well in. I'd asked her earlier in the week AND farmed out smalls so that she didn't need to have them for an hour, what a display! She was so aggressive! I've never seen that side of her before, others have said to me that N has a wicked temper and quite often a bad attitude but if i'm honest i have to say that i thought they were exaggerating but no, they weren't. I've tried to speak to her since then, i've told her that i love her umpteen times but until she's ready to talk there's not much i can do. To push her before she's ready would only make it worse, she'll speak when she wants to and not before. i have told her though that her attitude is unacceptable and she's not to behave like that towards me or anyone else, no matter how justified in saying it. Two wrongs don't make a right and i've asked her to come to me if someone/thing is winding her up.
I've been into a couple of forums this week and chatted to some lovely ladies, i think they had a good laugh at my lack of technical prowess. I'd need a manual that explained 'computers for dummies' for those even dumber than dummies!Poor me! Another thing i want to learn how to do is link my flickr page to my blog, i'll dig out the spellbook later and see what magic i can find to achieve it. It really is sad isn't it **blush** . I thought the witchcraft that i used to link my blog to my profile on the forum was amazing indeed! Weeell, if you're laughing at me then some other poor bugger is being left alone! Lol!!
I'm sooo tired, coughing germy wriggling bodies in my bed are not helping me get a good nights sleep, i can tell you that for nothing! I'm heading up to bed, maybe if i go up earlier it'll mean i get more sleep in the longrun? **raises eyes and pleads to the lady**. With that, i'm away.......
Wednesday, 12 November 2008
When i'd come round and could speak coherently again (2 strong sweet cups of tea and the smelling salts helped tremendously!) we chatted for a little while briefly going over what our priorities would be with regards to her education, which methods we would use and how long we'd give it to make sure that it really was the best way forward for our daughter. Although myself and R's dad haven't lived together since she was a year old i feel that it was only fair to keep him up to speed with the choices i'm making for our daughter and invite his opinion on the important stuff. Whatever has gone on before between her father and me we are both her parents and her wellfare should be the priority, even if it means practically chewing off my tongue on occasion when he talks to me like i'm three.
So, duly armed with all this positivity i called R over to tell her what me and her dad had discussed, expecting a display of pleasure usually reserved only for something new and sparkly, when what i got was .....tears! What??!!! I wasn't expecting that. She wants to stay at school 'cos she'll miss her friends and won't be able to do p.e. and wants to do the nativity at xmas. What to do now then? B wants to be homeschooled, i've mentioned in an earlier post how much B has changed this year since he's changed classrooms and his best friend has gone on to high school. Part of me feels that she'll not want to go to school very shortly after B leaves, the other thinks that if i pull her out of school now she's always going to feel that i didn't fully take her needs and/or wants into as much consideration as Bs BUT where does that leave me? Has anyone else had this? One kid wanting out of school and the other wanting to stay in? It's completely thrown me off kilter, i feel as though i'm back to square one again, stuck somewhere between the devil and the deep blue sea or a rock and a hard place.
The one thing that i'm not really looking forward to at all is having this conversation with Bs dad. He lives a fair distance away and only sees B in the school holidays. i know that if i H.s. B then he'll want to have him even more than he already does. I know he's his dad but i already struggle with the amount of time that B spends away from me. His dad has him every school holiday, including the summer where i don't see him for 7 weeks, plus all half term and full term breaks , each one lasting one or two weeks. I even allow him to take turns at xmas, one year he's with his dad the next with me. How can i stop him from trying to take even more time away from me? He hasn't gained all this access through the courts, i have care, control and residency, it's me who's allowed him so much time with the boy, purely so that they could have a regular, meaningful relationship. Now is not the time to go into it, i'll save that one for another post until i have more time maybe. I will say that it hasn't always been easy but for the sake of our childrens happiness sometimes we mams have to hold our tongues and smile sweetly! He left when B was 4 months old and i was being treated for cervical cancer so, suffice to say i did take it pretty hard. It took some time and a lot of hard work on both our parts to get to the point we're at now whereby i've had him and his mam to come and stay over so that they could be there for his birthday mornings in term time, also sometimes letting B go down to his dads earlier than the school actually does end for the holidays so that he can do lots of the interesting boy, and only child, stuff that they do together. I love to see his face when daddy comes, it's so beautiful and they are so alike, peas in a pod. I feel so glad that B has a daddy who loves him so much in his life, some poor souls don't see their daddies from one year to the next, i KNOW he's loved and cared for. If any one tried to hurt my boy i know his dad would give anything to protect him, as would i. Bs dad hasn't worked for a couple of years since he fell there, after that he began to stay indoors alot more, to the point where his mam and i said that the only time he was really alive was when he had little B with him. They are so good for each other, despite a bit of a poor start i could never have wished for a better daddy for my boy. Even though i know all this however i feel that for B to spend even more time would cut through me like a sword. What to do about this quandry is pecking my head, more guilt i can do without thanks! Yet again "life is what happens to you when you're busy making other plans", my signature line that quote, (John Lennon, Beautuful boy)it just about sums up my life.................
Monday, 10 November 2008
To upload a pic of 5 of my kids, Lee, Jay, Nell, Brandon and Rowanne. Anyone who knows me irl would tell you what an amazing achievement this is! For too long i've avoided the whole computer thing like the plague, but no more! Hee Hee!
The whole learning thing seems much more do-able now we've got the computer to help. I'm performing a bit of an experiment this week, R has a cough and B is quite congested, they're not desperatly ill but i though that this would give me the opportunity to see if we could actually manage home ed? I'm not sure how it'll go, part of me thinks that at 9 and 7 they might be too old to change to a completely different learning technique but my biggest fear is that i wont be able to teach them all they'll need to know in order for them to get decent jobs and lifestyle when they're older. How will i feel if i let them down? How will THEY feel if i let them down? This is such a major decision, i'm not sure if a week is long enough to see if it can work out. How did all you do it? Is it easier if they've been HE from day one? Has anyone taken their kids out of school later on? I'm feeling a bit overwhelmed to be honest, i'm worried that to take the out of school would hinder them in their later lives? As you can probably see i keep going round and round in circles, tying myself up in knots and not getting any closer to a definate decision. How do you know if the kids will be better off? They may well be happier at home but will the education that i can give them set them up for life in the real world when they are out there alone competing for work in what could still be a severe economic climate? I know i know, they've a long way to go yet before it comes to that yet, but still, what to do.
I don't think that i'm as worried about my kids ability to adapt to a change of direction, more my ability to help them reach their full potential. I'm not even thinking about what their fathers will have to say about it, i'll cross that bridge when i come to it, the kids welfare comes before their somewhat uninformed opinions. They don't see them coming out of school looking sad sometimes or not wanting to go to school, Bs dad is NOT a morning person, neither is B, but while he stays in bed until lunchtime he expects B to be up with the lark. Even before he was born B was a nightowl, round about the time that i'd be thinking about bed was the time that my little toe wriggler would start to play drums with my ribcage! It didn't matter what time i took B up to bed, from being a baby he'd get most active in the evening. He would happily go up to bed as a toddler but he'd lie awake singing to himself for such a long time, telling his ted stories or making them up for himself. He's just a kid who doesn't drop off to sleep quickly, and most certainly doesn't get up easily, whether he's had 12 hours sleep or just 2. Judging by his apparent lack of morning loving hormones, exactly like his daddy, i'd say being a nightowl is sometimes genetic! When a man only goes for jobs that start in the evening or afternoon then you know that mornings are a real problem!
Now R is the other way around, she often falls asleep on me or L, in front of the fire or in fact wherever she is she'll just drop off as long as someone is holding her or she's close to us, but if she goes up to bed she'll fuss for hours, she just doesn't like to sleep alone, she's a good little sleeper and is quite an early bird. Often the day starts off badly with a grumpy tired B and a bouncy R, her giddiness winds up B and he gets tetchy which then of course sets her off declaring that she's done nothing wrong and it's all his fault. I think that maybe easing into the day slower would help them to be a bit more even tempered as there wouldn't be the need to hurry him up so much and she could faff to her hearts content with her hair with no worries of lateness because of it.
These seem like good reasons to implement change but I would never forgive myself if i made the wrong choices now that will hinder them in years to come. If they don't seem to be progressing what to do then? Has anyone ever taken their kids out of school only to put them back in at a later date? Have anyones kids wanted to go back to school of their own accord, or maybe not wanted to leave? I feel like i'm going round in circles, which of course i am. I was wondering how you mams out there who've been where i'm stood now managed to reach a decision? Was it the right one? Should i keep my options open for a while yet? I would really appreciate any advice you could give to me here? I'm off to prepare dinner and beat myself up a bit more, sigh.......
Sunday, 9 November 2008
I'm a single parent and have been disabled for the last 4 years, also i live quite a distance from my family. This means that i don't get out as much as i used too, sometimes having periods when i can't even get out of bed. Prior to my disability we were hardly ever at home, we live in the countryside in a tiny little village and to make it even better we're only a couple of miles from the coast. We used to have great fun, the world was our oyster. After i became ill all of this stopped, it's only this year that i've had the courage to try things again, i think i was ashamed of the way i look now and didn't want people to see me being unable to take care of everything by myself when i'd always been fiercely independant. I thought that my kids were my responsibility alone, if we didn't rely on anyone else then no one could let us down. I'd dealt with unreliable dads(some worse than others) who'd upset them by letting them down with arrangements and promises. So it was that we went from that to a situation where i had to rely totally on other people for almost all aspects of care, for both the kids and myself. I've had carers coming in twice a day for four years now, it's taken me quite a long time to deal with my new situation but i really do feel that i'm getting there.
One of the things that has really helped me, that wouldn't have entered my mind in a hundred years, is the internet. Whilst i still spend a lot of my time alone i no longer feel isolated and apart from everyone else, at the flick of a button i can see and enjoy the different lives of so many other mams from all over the world. I found flickr by way of Lucy at 'by other means' one click and i was away, so many inspiring women all so very different yet so alike. My kids are totally amazed by how much i enjoy the internet without going on the sites that they love so much. It's made a real difference to my life, finding people who think, have similar interests and aspirations as me. As you might imagine living in a small rural community that is quite close knit i do differ quite a lot from most of the other people who live here. For the most part people were ok, i think that i was a bit of an oddity, tribe of kids, purple haired, hippy with no man in the house and the real cruncher, someone wasn't born there, a stranger to their community who had some very different attitudes towards life and childrearing than was the custom here. As i'd moved to such a small community i soon found that they were more conservative in their veiws, the pace of life somewhat slower than had been the case in towns that we'd lived in before, despite all this the kids made friends pretty quickly and most of them wanted to spend time in my house where it was often tea for ten or whatever. 'Open house' wasn't common here before i came along but to be fair a few other mams now have much more relaxed attitudes with regards to child play.I have made a couple of really good friends here who were -and still are- just so incredible and supportive when my problems started, i can honestly say that if it wasn't for them then my kids would've most likely ended up in foster care during the time i was hospitalised and after the surgeries. True friends are worth their weight in gold and are few and far between, i love them dearly and could never repay the debt of gratitude that i owe them, not that they would ever expect me too.
The winter is all but upon us which means even more time indoors, get those curtains drawn and the fire stoked up! Loads of time in the evening for crafty things to do, hopefully some good books to read and time cuddled up in mammys bed watching videos whilest it's freezing outside. To be honest i enjoy the computer so much that i often take it upstairs to bed and surf while the kids watch a film, shocking i know! I look forward to logging on just to see if i've had a comment, how sad is that? In a bizzare way i feel that by seeing what lots of other mams are doing i can kind of enjoy things by proxy. Majikfaerie has had soo many adventures, Cage free family are inspiring in so many ways and the lovely Ariad at Rainbow farm is such a gentle soul. Karisma has the same sense of humour as me, Lucy at 'by other means' started me off and my name twin Sarah P at knitting the wind enthralls me too, in fact everyone seems to be so warm and welcoming. I know i haven't been around long but really what it boils down to is that despite what i said to my kids the internet it really is a wonderful thing and also THANKYOU to everyone for sharing their lives with me and who takes the time to read the things that i have to say, even if it's someties waffling drivel! Thankyou so much, i look forward to sharing many more of your lives adventures with you....
Wednesday, 5 November 2008
Back to my original subject, my hoarding tendancies (stay with me here people, i'm on a roll!) i think that this too stems from childhood. I was -and still am! - the oldest of 6 kids and money was tight. We never went without and certainly never felt deprived of anything. My mam used to go to jumble sales (before charity shops or car boot sales, a very english tradition methinks) and get clothes from there, we didn't have three closets full of clothes and we looked after what we had so it could be passed on to the next kid. There wasn't all the toys and games that we have today, we looked after those to and played for years - rainy day snakes and ladders anyone?- and we managed to grow up to be pretty well functioning adults. I hate to throw anything away just in case it comes in handy at a later date. I'm sounding so much like my mam here i'm nearly screaming! I think what i'm basically trying to say in my usual around the houses 15 times way is that although many of todays kids have much more 'stuff' than we did i still feel that we still got the better end of the deal. All the posessions in the world can never replace a cuddle from mum or a day out at the beach eating sand butties. In 20 years do we want to hear our kids say "I had the Brainbuster 40,000 and the 27 before that" or "we went to the beach, got sand in our sandwiches, had a great time and when we got home mam tucked us up in bed", i think i know which one i'd like to hear the most. Here we are, ordinary mams, not politicians or world leaders but WE know what our society needs to do to heal itself of this terrible malady that threatens to engulf it. We know what our kids REALLY need and i'm pretty sure that Sony aren't going to develop it any time soon nor will all the N.A.S.A. technology ever created be able to give our kids the most important things that they will ever need. It costs nothing and knows no limits, our love is all kids need to truly grow, love, time, understanding and giving them the chance to take part in this adventure called life, no computer game on earth could ever compare to that.
Monday, 3 November 2008
Yet again i digress, Nell looked beautiful and so grown up, it gave me a funny feeling in my chest. Not bad exactly, just a kind of pang that reminded me that although it sometimes feels like life is slow and passing me by, in reality it's flying by and my babies are growing so fast! My little girl has turned into a young lady in the blink of an eye. The next thing i know R will be using straighteners and eyeliner and developing her 'posh pout' for pictures. How can this be happening so soon? it only seems a short while ago that my eldest kids were starting school but now 3 of the six have finished school! I remember taking them to halloween parties and laughing as we all did apple bobbing and ghost stories, now it's major organised parties, hired halls and costumes that cost the earth! I have loved samhain for a long time but i do think that it's far too commercial now. I didn't mean to get all deep and stuff but it's kind of turning out that way!
I took lots of pics at the party but was kicking myselk 'cos as the party started to wind down both my girls fell asleep on the couch and my batteries has died in my camera. I usually carry spares but i'd taken the wrong handbag and had no spares with me - Bah! Originally iy had been planned that i'd drive t the party and then leave my car there and collect it the next morning but it was only 2degrees outside and my car insisted in reminding me that there was a big chance of ice on the roads. I took the adult decision and didn't drink so that i could drive the kids home. My lovely Jean was as drunk as a lord (well, lady anyhoo!) and insisted on walking (it was a very small distance from the party to Jeans house, less than a five minute walk) home, calling in at her startled parents to tell them that she loved them. Meanwhile i'd got the kids sorted and in bed, had changed my own clothes and made a cup of tea! I'd just started to fret when Jean arrived home -phew! I was in the process of looking for the phone to check that she'd actually left the party and was about to ask Paul to walk down and see that she hadn't fallen down or something. We both laughed as i looked at my watch as she came in and said "What time do you call this to be getting home madam?". Ofcourse as i was sober n Jean was squiffy i knew she'd feel bad the next day so i made her drink some water and numerous cups of tea to stop her from dehydrating too much! We stayed up until after 3am putting the world to rights. She drinks so rarely that it doesn't take a lot to make her blottoed, only a couple of glasses of wine to make her head spin, even when absolutely sloshed she still worries about everyone else before herself. We finally staggered up to bed at about 3am, hoping to grab at least a few hours good sleep befre our little angels woke up as they'd been up till midnight. I didn't need much rocking i can tell you......
Thursday, 30 October 2008
I digress, Nell n Rowanne have a complicated relationship. They're sisters, they love each other but the age gap is a bit of a problem at the moment. Nell is 14, thankfully for me she's quite a young 14, well actually no, she's a normal 14 which means that she's not trying to be 21 and wishing her life away. I'm so grateful for that fact, i see too many girls acting like they're so grown up when they're neither physically or mentally ready for adulthood. Nell is my very own dolly dimple, we used to joke that she should've been blonde! She does in fact do a good impression of a ditzy blonde even though she is so far removed from it in reality. Sometimes she has lots of patience with R, doing lovely things for her without any prompting or suggestion, others they can't be in the same room without fur flying. Today R had a dilema 'cos her giant sized teddy had a hole and the stuffing was falling out (well, those awful little polystyrene balls that fill beanbags) so she went and got my sewing tin and stitched ted up for her, no problem. Conversely R will ask her to do a simple thing, a drink of juice or help with something on the computer and if N had her way hell would freeze over first. Complicated or what? In fairness to Nell, R doesn't think that she's any younger than N, she thinks that if N can do something then it's her right to do it as well. Right now they're playing together, it's hilarious. Nell has told R that giant ted is her boyfriend, of course Rowanne has declared that he can't possibly be her fella 'cos he's clearly HER boyfriend. R has jumped onto the couch pulling ted on top of her so Nell has jumped on top of ted, pretending that she can't hear R's cries for help. It's lovely to see them playing together but it'll end in tears. And, as if by magic, it has!
(later) So Rowanne turned the tables on Nell who was by then lay under ted with R jumping on top, however, she misjudged the jump and landed on Nells head. Not good. Nearly a disaster of titanic proportions. Fortunately i was able to persuade her that R had just been giddy and had not hurt her intentionally. Thankfully, she listened. I think the fact that the others agreed that it'd been an accident helped. As well as my kids there are 3 of Jays friends in the kitchen being all male teenager-ish, Of course they had to preen their peacock feathers around Nell and Hannah. So predictable. They were huddled in the kitchen 'cos R's having a sleepover tonight, she has Molly n Sophie here. It'll character building i reckon. Her room is quite small and three girls, plus the mountains of 'stuff' that they need, will probably mean a massive camp out in mams bedroom. Ho hum, looking forward to that then!
Tomorrow is Samhain (All Hallows Eve or Pagan New Year) as well as haalloween so R has blagged her brother Lee to take her out trick or treating then we'll be off over to Jeans house as we've all been invited to a party at another of our friends house, Mel. She has two little lads aged 3 and 6, i'm glad that everyone will have a good time but i will miss Brandon so much. I miss not having him here for family celebrations. His dad has the same beliefs as me so it's not that he wont get to celebrate. Everyone does halloween anyway. I'm jst wishing that i could have him here with me. Even with a house full of kids it doesn't make the place seem any less like there's something missing. A mothers bond to her kids never fades, it just learns to stretch further as they get older and go out into the big wide world. Kayleigh is 22 and married, living only 5 doors away, that doesn't change my concern for her, they're just different. Lee lived so far away from me for 5yrs but that didn't mean that missing him lessened in any way. Our kids're joined to us with an unbreakable bond, always and forever in our hearts.
I wasn't intending to get all deep and meaningful today, it just turned out that way. Nell is now organising a 'rave' in my kitchen for the younger kids 'cos Jay n his mates have gone out. I'm thinking earplugs might be a good choice at this point! They'll have a good time so i'll worry about my hearing tomorrow!Hope everyone has fun tomorrow evening, whereever and whatever they do.....
Monday, 27 October 2008
A couple of hours later the main event started. R is 7 years old, i remind you of this 'cos i think sometimes she forgets and therefore expects everyone else too. She has never been allowed to walk to the village postoffice alone, nor will she be allowed to for quite some time yet. She wanted some sweets from the shop and wanted to go and get them for herself, which i obviously refused, i explained (for the umpteenth time) that the road wasn't safe and that no matter how sensible she is she can't make bad drivers driving improve just so she could go for sweets. The siren went off at this point, BIG time. It really was a spectacular display, the full screaming, kicking, i hate you(ing), you're the worst mam ever , you hate me, i'm sick of being treated like a baby i want to do it mineself (she used to say this as a baby all the time, it still slips out sometimes when she's angry). Her face actually went purple almost. At this point, of course, there's no point in even trying to speak to her as she's far beyond rational thinking. A few years ago this would have descended into a general demolition of anything in her path, she used to pull drawers out and fling toys across the room, throw herself onto the floor and much more besides. I used to be terrified that she'd hurt herself in her rage but i learned to let her get on with it. Once she'd reached that point the best thing to do was to walk away from her and let the hysterics run their course, if i tried to intervene before then it would just fan the flames causing them to burn for longer. It was really difficult to do this, all my instincts were screaming at me to go back and hold her -or yell right back!! - but i've had to learn that it wasn't the best course of action. If i leave her to get on with it the it burns down far quicker than if i'd intervened. It usually ends with her having stomped up to her bedroom until the shockwaves have passed and then she comes downstairs absolutely shattered and emotionally drained and all she wants is a cuddle. I really do worry about her, none of my other kids have had a temper like this, she has told me that she gets a feeling in her tummy, it gets sort of hot and bubbly and then she knows what's going to happen. It's so difficult, over the years shs has actually lashed out at me a number of times, at her siblings too. It had got to the point that when she lashed out at Brandon a couple of times he did actually hit her back. When i told him not too his answer was that it's not fair that she keeps on hitting him and nothing ever dets done about it. I explained that i did tell her off about it and it's not the right thing to do. His theory? He doesn't mind if i speak to him for hitting R, it doesn't hurt him like R hitting him does, i always talk to R about it but she carries on doing it so why shouldn't he? What do i say? He's right. All the talking to her in the world hadn't stopped her from hitting him and it is grossly unfair that she hits him when she doesn't get her own way. I must confess that i really struggled - and still do to a degree - with this one. My mums answer is give her a good hiding, that'll sort her out. I don't want to give my daughter a good hiding, I've had enough of those over the years to know that it wont solve the problem and those memories would blight our relationship for many years to come. So, what do i do? Both R and i know that her hitting out and eruptions of temper are not acceptable behaviours, talking doesn't /hasn't helped, i'm not open to giving out 'good hidings' and i don't know what else to try.
Next on the agenda is removing of priviledges but what is a priviledge? Do i let the others do something that she wont be allowed to do? Do i stop her from having friends over? How do i do this in a way that she'll understand? She already knows that she's not supposed to hit people, she understands what is and is not acceptable behaviour and most of the time she can stay within these guidelines but sometimes she just can't do it. Any suggestions?....
Sunday, 26 October 2008
It's really odd here tonight, there's only me and the two dogs in the house. As you can imagine this doesn't happen very often at all and to be honest it feels very strange. Maybe you'd think that i'd jump at the chance of some 'me' time, do fifteen rounds of the Halellujah Chorus and head for the bathroom armed with enough lotions, potions, bath goodies and smelly candles to give Cleopatra a run for her money? Nope. I'm sat here at 1.36am on a saturday night/sunday morning writing on blogger 'cos i can't sleep as the house is too empty!! How sad is that?? Actually i'm not sure which part is the saddest, the fact that i'm childfree on a saturday and am not out partying with friends or the fact that i can't go to bed cos the house is too empty. Truth is, i really don't think that i'd like to be out on a saturday night, the thought of running the cattlemarket course without some muppet thinking he could rock my world really isn't pleasant, *shudder*. Now if it was a night in with a friend, bottle of mead(nectar of the goddess,Mmm) some tasty nibbles or hell even a takeaway then that WOULD be a fab way to spend a saturday night. Not enough notice though i'm afraid. Ah, well.
How many of us feel a bit like our lives are a bit like groundhog day? Me too. I love my kids more than life itself but sometimes i fear that i don't like them - no, that's not quite right - i don't like the fact that they continue to do/not do the things i ask them to not do/do. Why is that? When they ask us to do something they automatically expect it to have been done yesterday, if not sooner! Of course the things that we ask them to do are wicked and cruel barbaric tasks. Sometimes i wonder if i do in actual fact speak the same language as my offspring? Maybe whilst i think that i'm asking a simple request like 'take your plate away please' or 'pick up your belongings BEFORE someone stands on them'. what they actually hear is 'put your hand into the fire' or 'throw yourself under a bus'? At least that's what you'd think i'd said judging by their reactions - and that's just the big'uns!Lol! Another one, 'it's time for bed' . Aaagh! The brutality! I've reached a point where i think that this is a more certain proof of age and maturity that most other tests i could think of. When we are young we spend so much time plotting schemes to help us avoid going to bed early yet from our late twenties onwards we spend the rest of our lives trying to find ways to spend just a little more time in bed. Ironic eh?
Eeh, i'm feeling philosophical tonight.I really don't like being here alone, it's really strange, it's almost as if the house can tell that there are no kids here? I love my home, it's the first house that i've lived in since i left my parents house 23 years ago that has felt like home. I've never wanted to stay in one place for very long before, heck i've had boxes that weren't unpacked for 3 moves 'cos i knew that we weren't going to stay! I usually like somewhere for a few months and then my feet start to itch, we did live in a caravan for quite a long time which was just perfect. It was an old tourer, we just parked near a beach for the summer and the kids loved it, i really enjoyed our time there, walking down to the farm for veggies and to the tiny village shop where we bought cards to send telling everyone that we were ok and having fun, fond memoriws of happy days.
I'm feeling rather tired, At Last!, and it's 2.40am so it's well past pumpkin o'clock for me! Till next time....
Sunday, 19 October 2008
We finally got to Jeans, piled in abandoning hats coats and shoes in the process. (It's so cold wet and windy here right now that i was toying with the idea of socks for everyone, including me!) The kids quickly settled into doing some crafts that they'd requested for this visit, at least R and Heather (Jeans lass) did. B has been very unsettled recently which is so sad to see. His best friend through school and at home has been Iain ever since we moved here, Iain's two years older than B so after the summer hols he went up to high school which has left B behind.. At first they seemed to cope well but of course Iain has made new friends, which is totally natural, thus causing B to feel a little left out. Also i think that now B doesn't have Iain to support him he is having a hard time at school too. B has always been such a happy pleasant boy with his head in the clouds and a smile on his face , sadly that's no longer the case, he's becoming quite volatile, emotional and even on occasion aggresive which is completely out of character for him. He growls almost if you ask him to do something and he doesn't want to, gets so angry and red in the face even when no one has said anything to him. Yesterday i said "Brandon could i have a word /are you feeling ok?", nothing aggresive there but he immediately growled, burst into tears and yelled "Right, if you feel like that i'll go to bed then!!???" and off he stamped. What??? I tried to speak to him when he'd calmed down but he refused to discuss the matter and i felt that if i'd pushed it he'd've just got more and more upset. I'm at a loss. Of all my kids this is sooo out of character for him, he was by far the most placid of them all.
Sooo, back on track. Whilst H and R were busy doing some girly craft thing that invlved lots of glitter, stamps and anything sparkly he had picked up an old harmonica that had belonged to Jeans dad and just started to play it! I was actually in the other room when it started and i thought either Jean or H were playing it as he's never played one one in his life, i asked Jean when she'd learned to play? She came in chuckling to herself as she said that it was B who was playing it, apparently my face was a picture! That was a lovely thing and guess what he's going to be getting for his next present? It was lovely to see his smile and sense of achievement, it breaks my heart to see him unhappy. It's amazing how a change of scenery and self confidence can change someones whole demeanor in such a short time. Usually if we go to Jeans for a sleepover it's during the holidays so we don't have to be up and ready the next day, this means that B has missed out on a number of visits, although he's never said that he wanted to do it, he's usually said that he wasn't bthered 'cos he was with his daddy instead. However he has requested the last two overnight visits that he's had there. Again, Jean is such a gentle soul and does take time to speak to him instead of focusing all her attention on the girlies. All in all it was a very lovely visit.
We had to leave earlier today as R had a party invite that we needed to get ready for. She completely blew me away with what she chose to wear, a skirt and blouse and strappy(ish) sandals. The mode du jour recently has been skinny jeans and dark tops- in order to look as 'goth' possible. So imagine my shock when she picked a creme blouse and light coloured skirt, it was freezing and blowing a gale! However, i was not going to argue with her, i'd told her about the weather etc and let her go with her own choices even if i don't agree, it's not the end f the world is it.
Off we popped, dropped her @ the party where she confidently skipped in even though she didn't know most of the kids and hasn't really seen Esme for over a year, how they grow so quickly, last year she wouldn't've let go of my skirt much less allowed me to go home and collect her at the end. I have to admit that i was partly glad BUT a little hurt too that she didn't need me there, it's that growing up thing thats starting to kick in!!!Eeek!!
While R was at the party i phoned J only to discover that he hadn't taken his charger so his phone was flat- marvellous!- the knock on effect of that being that we couldn't contact him to find out if he was ok, had made his connection or whatever. I was having a gentle breakdown to say the least. Kayleigh and Rob went to pick him up from the station at 8.15pm but of course there was no way to contact him as time ticked slowly on and there was no sign of him. We'd done the usual, rang Amy's mam to check that he'd caught the train, checked that the 2nd train was running late -which it was - but we had no way of actually speaking to him to reassure ourselves that he was ok. An hour later - by which time i'd aged 15yrs - he sheepishly walked out of the station. My emotions varied between wanting to hug him for being safe and wanting to murder him for scaring me so much! I really don't know how we coped before mobile phones were invented, did our parents just feel generally safer about our welfare or did the worry of us prematurely age them? AND (this was my argument) What's the use of me giving in and getting him a flipping phone if he promptly leaves his charger behind and his phone goes flat??? It's not that i want to stop him having fun, up to a sensible limit, and i'm not trying to control his life, if that were the case then they'd all be wrapped in cotton wool and safely with me!Lol, but i do feel that it's not too much to ask to be kept informed of his well being etc. I know we have to let them make their own choices and mistakes as they go along but is it unfair to ask them to show some common courtesy and let us know that they're ok? Anyone have any opinions on this subject?
I'm off to the chemist shop now to buy a hairdye to cover all the extra greys that developed over the weekend! Aaagh!...........
Saturday, 18 October 2008
So, up we got this morning, B and i (R and N were at sleepovers) not in a rush to be anywhere. Lee was up before 10am and we were just lazing around for an hour or so. L's boss arrived with his wages, thankfully!, in which he found a lovely surprise. This led to a hasty get ready and a car trip into the nearest town. Lee (who's 21!) NEEDED to buy himself an x-box 360 which i am assured is REALLY cheap and essential to the continuation of both mankind and peace and harmony in our household?!! My main thought was "Over £130 pounds?!! Does it make tea and solve world hunger?" to which i recieved a number of snorts and general rolling of eyes. Guess what we're doing now? Yep, sitting with the thing plugged into the t.v. and general male oohs and ahhs echoing around the room.
Whilst L and B managed to make a fair amount of noise and sound effects it was less theatrical than usual as J isn't here. He has gone away for the weekend to visit his new girlfriend and stop at their house which is a good 3 hour train journey away. I know that i'm his mam and perhaps a little overprotective but i've really struggled with this. I don't know her family, he met her at the festival we went to in august and what started out as friendship has now become something more. When we were at Solfest he was actually with his previos girlfriend, Gill, and they both befriended her. Gill ended their relationship about a month ago, she's had a very hard time recently as she was diagnosed severely diabetic and is now insulin dependant which has caused a knock on effect of many other things, which threw J completely and so he's turned to Amy for comfort. As an adult i can see that this is a rubberband relationship but he can only learn by his own experiences and has to work through this himself. He'd never been 'dumped' (his words) before and i think his ego was a little bruised so Amy was a good way to build it up again as it was clear that she fancied him from the beginning. I don't want to see her hurt but am powerless to do anything about it. I'm afraid that they wont be properly supervised, Amy's mum was constantly drunk whilst we were away and allowed her to sleep elsewhere without actually coming to see if there were any adults present at all. I've spoken to J on many occasions about suitable behaviour but he is a 16yr old male. Whilst i wouldn't allow my 15yr old daughter to have her boyfriend share her bedroom not all people are the same. All i can do is hope that he's listened to the things i've told him over time and trust him to make a responsible judgement about the situation.
The truth of the matter is that he's my boy and i don't like not having him close to me where i know he's safe. J has suffered with epilepsy since he was a child but has thankfully been fit free for over a year now, even so i still worry about him. His opinion is that he's not had a fit for a year so it's over and done with but it's not always as easy as that. He's a long way from home with people that i don't know, he's travelled by train alone across the country and i am helpless if he needs me. I know, it's a mum thing, you'd think it'd get easier as they got older but no, it's just a different -if not bigger- set of worries that we have to deal with. We can hope that we've prepared our kids well for their survival in the big wide world but we can't prepare them for the way other people behave.
R has come back from her sleepover at Sophies so we're going to repack her bag for our sleepover at Jeans tonight. I love spending the night with her, we always sit up far too late and put the world to rights, sometimes we might have a glass of wine (or Baileys irish cream- yum) but more often than not we just drink a gallon of tea and talk till our jaw hurts! Isn't it wonderful to find someone that you can chat with forever, whether it was the last week/month/year that you saw them, or, conversely you can sit in peaceable silence and it not turn into an awkward one? We only get a small number of those in our lives and they usually arrive when you need them most, almost like a kindred spirit or soulmate. I don't believe that our soulmate has to be our sexual partner, or even a life one, it could be that we meet a number of soulmates at different times in our live when we need each others help and only when we have achieved or learned what was needed will we be free to mve on. I don't know how other people feel about this topic but i find that it seems to have been that way for me.
I'm going to sign off and get dinner ready so we can try (but usually fail!) to be organised for 6.30pm so wish me luck!............
Thursday, 16 October 2008
T be fair whilest i'm selfishly doing a jig in celebration of his return it was in fact a very hard time for him. He had split up with his girlfriend and had no where to live so he came home to his Mam, it was sad 'cos he'd had to give up his job which he loved and had been in for 5 years and enjoyed. The job situation being what it is he struggled to get another but has finally found something that he seems to enjoy. I f course wish that he hadn't had to go through the heartache at the time but would be a liar if i didn't admit to being over the moon that he's back with me.
It hasn't been the easiest of times, he's not lived in the madhouse for 5 years and has had to get used to the general uproar that is us, he has needed some quiet time alone to think which isn't the easiest of things to manage but we're doing ok. I feel that he struggles with the Smalls sometimes as he'd forgotten how hectic it can be, he's used to coming in and relaxing in peace - not that he gets that opportunity here!- and the fact that he can't have total control of the t.v. either. I don't like it on much to be honest but i did make a concession and alow him to have the sports channels on as he's an avid football fan; personally i'd rather watch paint dry but each to their own eh? If it helps him settle then it's worth it.
It amazes me when people say "i bet you can't wait for them all to grow up and leave..." WHY would i want that? They're my children and of course i want them to grow and be happy, see the world, have fun, learn , love and laugh but why would that make me want to chase them out of the door as soon as they're old enough for me to legally do so? They're MY children, i love them and am responsible for them until the day i die. That doesn't mean thet i need to rule their lives or keep them on a short leash, far from it, but if they ever need me then i'll always try to help and support them to the best of my ability. For your child to want to go and explore the big wild world says to me that you've done your job well. They're secure in the knowledge that they CAN take care of themselves and also that if needs be there will always be a place here for them should they need it. What do you think? Is this the case?
I know that when i left home at 18 i was told i was on my own and had to stand on my own two feet and that did hurt - a lot - for a very long time; especially when other siblings left home only to return when things got difficult. I felt a little bitter to be honest that i'd never been given that help, even when i lost my first home and was homeless with two babies ages 2 and1 at the ripe old age of 21. I had to go and stay in a temporary hostel for a while until i found somewhere else to live. This is ne reason why i could never close the door on any of my children, i know how it feels to have that done to you. Again, although a hard lesson to learn and very painful one at the times, it helped me to be the person i am today who hopefully is more aware of the consequences of such actions. All we can do is our best in the end. I have a little motto that i use to try and describe my approach to parenting;
" I love being a Mam, BUT i hate it when i have to be a parent".
I don't want my kids to grow up resenting me for constantly getting at them for their choices; if they're going to put their hand in the fire then i'm clearly going to take immediate(loud?) action to stop them but should i treat their opinions and/or choices as invalid if they don't match mine? I think not. Sometimes i can hear myself sounding like my mum and then i usually know that it's time to back off. My mum was parenting in a different era where the old 'children should be seen and not heard' ethics were still around. i'm sure that she did her best but i know that i don't want my kids to feel about me the same way that i felt about my mum for a long number of years. The ask/tell once then lash out at them scool of thought isn't one i've ever wanted to use in my own home. Do any other mums have the same experiences? I'd love to Know. Also, another thought. Is it possible to take a kid out of school and homeschool them while letting them to work towards qualifications of their own choice? Do you need any kind of experience or qualifications yourself in order to homeschool you kids? Anybody out there got any suggestions? They'd be greatly appreciated! Until next time...........................
Wednesday, 15 October 2008
We haven't lived together since before her 2nd birthday so it's not like she misses that, however earlier this year he made murmerings about moving here with us. I must admit that my first thoughts were what was he after and why now. I know that him living with us would be an incredibly difficult thing for us to adapt to but i did give it a little thought;i think the concept of two parents together appealed to me until i did a reality check and remembered how bad it was before he left that is. It turned out that he's been gradually getting himself deeper and deeper into debt and wanted to move here to escape the consequences. I pointed out to him that if he couldn't support himself and his dog (he isn't on a bad wage, he's just not good with finances) how the heck could he support all of us? I think that he wanted to move in here but for me to continue claiming benefits so he could keep his money for himself -NOT! When i said no he told Rowanne that he didn't know if he'd be able to see her at christmas 'cos he might not have anywhere to live as Mama wouldn't let him move in with her. She didn't tell me this for a little while but i had noticed a change in her behavior, she'd wet her pants and even the bed - mine!- a couple of times. I kept gently asking her what the problem was but it all finally came out in the car as we were driving home late one evening. She sobbed for the best part of an hour, i have to admit that my blood was boiling with him but me then badmouthing daddy wouldn't have helped one bit. I told her that it was unlikely to happen and that it didn't matter if daddy lived far away as i would ensure that she saw him as much as possible. She knew that i was telling the truth as Brandon has regular contact with his paternal family. This seemed to ease her poor little heart and she settled off much quicker that night. I did have to have a strong chat with daddy over the phone, his response? "I'll have to be a bit more careful what i tell her really, i forget how little she is". SEVEN!!! I wanted to yell at him. The subject was more or less forgotten until last week when daddy called to collect her, we were a few minutes behind so while i was putting her shoes on she said "could you two get back together please?". Dad said "absolutely not!" at which her face started to crumble until i quickly said "Mama and daddy can't live together but we will stay friends, we both love you lots and it means that you can have 2 bedrooms, one at my house and one at daddys". She smiled happily, said "cool!!" and skipped off to get her toys for at daddys house. If only we'd had this conversation in the begining before he said anything thoughtless to her. she absolutely idolises her daddy, i wish he'd just think before he speaks occasionally!
So, off she's gone to daddys for a mid-week sleepover, she's so excited. It only takes little things to keep them happy most of the time if people think before they speak. Brandon has gone to Iains for a go on his computer games. The nights are drawing in so quickly now and i'm feeling that hibernating thing starting to kick in. I want the curtains drawn and the fire stoked up earlier and earlier. I feel as though i want the kids in earlier so we can huddle inside. I know that not everyone feels this way, i suffer from s.a.d.s and it does make it difficult sometimes, i really struggle to find motivation for anything, i'm just sooo sleepy and fuzzy headed all the time. The doctor wants me to take prozac to see if it helps but i'm wondering if St Johns Wort might be a better option? I used that for a few years but since i've been on all my other medications i haven't thought about adding anything else to it but i'm wondering if the fact that i'm even considering something to deal with it is a positive sign 'cos for the past few years i've not really bothered about anything. I'm feeling a bit like i'm caught between hell and a hard place, i'm not sure what to do for the best. I still have a couple of weeks to work it out before it gets too bad so hopefully i'll get it right by then.
I'm thinking about linking my blog to my flickr page and putting pics on here but i think that i'm going to need a little time to get my head round that! I'm such a technophobe, it's tragic really! I'm enjoying reading Majikfaeries blog, she has a wonderful life, she's fitted so much into such a short time, amazing. I wish that i'd found so many like minded people when i was younger. I had to endure a lot of criticism when i had my older kids, when i had Kayleigh at 18 a nurse actually told me that i couldn't breast feed as i hadn't been taught how, i was too young to breastfeed and there must be something 'wrong' with me if i wanted too! If i'd had a birth attendant like her then i think they'dve been more careful what they said to me! As i got older i found my courage to speak up more, even when i was having my 7th child, Rowanne, they tried to tell me what to do! I wonder if part of it was because my 3rd child, John, died of S.i.d.s at 3 months. Somehow if you lose a child you feel that people judge you as not as capable as other parents cos you got it 'wrong'. It's all crap of course but it takes a long time for you to realise that, there's a lot of healing to do before you get to that point. It was the worst time in my life but even this had a positive outcome in some ways. If John had lived i probably wouldn't've had Jay so soon and later Chanelle. over time i've learned that some of the lessons we have to learn are sometimes hard but we aren't given challenges that we can't overcome. We might think we can't at the time though! Hopefully not many have to have that particular lesson to learn.
I'm being chased upstairs as the football is coming on and they hate it when i ask stupid questions at important times! Lol! So, upstairs with a book and a cuddle off my youngest boy. Lovely....................................
Monday, 13 October 2008
So , what do we do? Make them 'suffer' the trauma of being the odd one out or sell your soul to the catalogue companies for the next decade? What choice is that? One guarenteed to make us feel bad that's for certain! I don't want my kids to miss out, i want them to be happy, safe, loved, educated, compassionate and much much more BUT i'm afraid that sometimes their happiness will have to be achieved whilst learning to accept the word 'no'. in this real world i AM a single parent living on disability benefits. This wasn't a lifestyle choice, i was married but when i damaged my spine, my husband crumbled under the pressure of caring for me and the kids through a very difficult time. He isn't a bad man, although he is a weak one, he didn't intend to leave us but his journey clearly took a different pathway from ours at that point in our lives. Looking back i'm glad now that he went when he did, i don't want to be responsible for his sadness as he was diagnosed bi-polar around this time, at the time i was not overjoyed to say the least! This leaves me being the 'mean' mum more frequently than i'd like but that's life. I don't know that home ed would make this less or more of a problem but i can't help but think that less peer pressure would mean less materialistic? It's a tough situation that i'd love some enlightenment on.
There was a point to this, and it does actually connect to sleep too! i had a really hard time getting up today and after doing some housework and spending an hour with Gilbert, my friend who brings my eggs round every monday, chatting and drinking tea as soon as he left i promptly fell asleep for nearly 3 hours only waking when my eldest son rang me to find out why i wasn't at the train station to meet him. The thing i thought was this:- if i needed sleep that badly then how tired must the kids've been in school today? They didn't have the chance to sleep today then i get crabby when they're whiney and horrible, is that fair? I think not. So i'm having a dilema -again.
Now they're tired and want to go to bed, when they're tired they're clingy, when they're clingy they want me to go to bed with them so now i can't finish the things i wanted to do today as they need to go and can't without mam. Which brings me to this...........
I'm away to bed now with my cherubic babies who need their mama in bed 'cos they're shattered and didn't get a chance to sleep today like mammy which means i'll have to lie awake being eaten by my conscience for sleeping half the day away. With that, goodnight.......................
You may wonder why i wrote it like that? In fact 'bedroom' is quite a relative word in this house. 'Why?' you may wonder. Well, it's like this, when most people think of the word bedroom they imagine a room with a bed in it, maybe a wardrobe and/or a set of drawers. If it's a childs room then a few toys might be in order, stored nicely in containers etc. When i was still an optimist i had those kind of ideas too, it's an easy dream to have. However, in my house that isn't the case. We DO have toys,EVERYWHERE, clothes,anywhere BUT in the aforementioned receptacles and beds that are regularly so covered with stuff that no one can actually sleep in them! Now, i'm pretty cool about most things, i 'm not expecting operating theatre cleanliness, hell i've even allowed midnight snacks when i was still naive enough to think it wouldn't most likely turn into biological warfare! but having actually invested in beds for everyone i thought they might be used occasionally?? Ha! Not likely! My bed is clearly the best in the entire universe, despite the fact that it's only a standard double bed and i'm not exactly sylph like! My kids're not getting any smaller either. It used to be ok to have the two youngest in bed with me (depending on who the two youngest were at any given moment) but it's getting to the point where it's uncomfortable and exhausting. We did implement for a while a rota so that they took turns during the week but friday was film night and we'd all pile in my bed with drinks and some sort of snack and watch films together. That worked quite well for a while but then an attack of poorly tummys blew that one out of the water.
Again, besides the space factor there's the 'stuff' factor which goes along the lines of 'drop everything on mums floor cos ours are full'. Fab! Did i mention that i'm disabled and not exactly agile? If the co sleeping didn't play havoc with my spine the obstacle course finishes the job off. Now, i'm honest enough t admit that sometimes it's nice to have that close contact with a toasty warm little(ish) body, most of the time being single doesn't bother me BUT i do sometimes want t cuddle something that doesn't have four legs and dog breath. Did i forget to mention that the two dogs sleep on my bed too? They're not yorkshire terriers either! Honestly, it sometimes feels like i'm on some kind of endurance test- which i'm slowly losing!
Soooo, back on track - don't worry, you'll get used to me doing this! - lazy sunday.....
As a result of apple day being cancelled i thought we were at a loose end, but no. The lovely Jean booked us tickets for a puppet show at the local community theatre. I managed to forget this until midday today when it popped up in my head - eek! Mad panic and general rushing ensued and lots of stressing by me but we managed to get there by the skin of our teeth- phew! It was lovely too, i've never been there before, it's an old school converted into a community centre with the only down side as far as i was concerned was that the theatre was upstairs. I wish we'd been allowed to take pics, it was nothing like i'd expected. It was one man with a wooden sort of frame around him which he hung things on and used to represent everything - it was "Little Red" riding hood btw - the kids were spellbound. He only used a couple of wooden dolls and i know i'm not doing it justice here, all i can say is we took 5 kids aged between 3 and 9 and they all enjoyed it.
We bumped into some children who had been at our school last year so it was nice to catch up and arrange play dates then off to Jeans foe pasta and lovely chat. I can't help but smile when i spend time with her, she's balm for my soul, just beautiful inside and out. All too soon it was time to leave for home. Even that turned into a task as i planned to call and get our electricity topped up whilest i was out in the car but no, nothing's that simple. I emptied my purse looking for the card, couldn't find it, panicked, thought i'd left it at home. Arrived home, checked meter, no card, only 3p left in electric, started to meltdown then J pulled it out of the purse i'd taken apart 10 mins before! Aaaaggh! S, dashed out and got it with 2 mins to spare before the shop shut. By the time we got back the house was in darkness as the electricity had run out. All character building stuff.
It was a case of quick wash and bed for the smalls, try and find the sink under the pile of dishes, locate tomorrows clothes, sink into a chair with a brew and then help J with his homework. This leads nicely up to now where i'm typing this. I was sorely tempted to leave it till tomorrow - well later on today if i'm technical about it - but it's likely i'd forget something by then! I'll say goodnight and hopefully catch up soon.......