Monday, October 26, 2009

He Crawls!

Yes he does, he does! But in a very random way, not at all like his big sister. When D set about crawling, it was later in age, and very, very specific. As soon as she could that was it, but until she could, she wouldn't. M is much more of the try, try and try again school. Today it almost seems that although he can crawl, he doesn't realise yet that he can so he is still frustrated about getting places. Almost at the same time as he is getting there.

Michael is 9 months in 2 days time. In 2 days time he will have been living outside longer than living inside of me. Remember this from last time, that truely momentous sense of the baby really becoming part of the world as a separating (from me) entity.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Dentists appt

Deborah had her first dentist appt today. She was great! Despite being clearly nervous, clutching onto her big plastic spider, she sat in the wooshy chair and had a ride. She let the dentist examine her teeth with his mirror which were pronounced all fine. The dentist was brilliant with her, and took it at Deborah pace. We watched daddy have his dental examination first, which was fascinating, with a special light, wooshy chair, the works.

Ian has a job, and starts in a weeks time. I am trying not to crap myself at the thought of being single mummy during the day. It's not being alone with my children that's the problem, it's them being alone with my temper that is.... A friend has helpfully said "We are never asked for more than we can give" or some such but well, we'll see. I just HAVE to be ok which may help. On the other hand, although Ian is earning less, with our new improved shopping habit's (ie cheap all the way) we should cover the drop in income. Plus it's terribly impressive he found a new job so quickly - technically he is still employed by his previous company and is working out his notice period.

Deborah was fabulous at football this afternoon, she is really starting to concentrate and understand what to do. She loved it and was quite worn out afterwards. We are moving to Saturday as I wouldn't be able to be as hands on as she needs as obviously I need to sit with Michael. He had a great time today too, shooting speedily backwards over the polished floor. So close to crawling now. One of his favourite games is kneeling by the side of the bath and bobbing hsi head up and down to say boo. I must try and photograph it sometime the pure undiluted love in his eyes and the joy is amazing. Despite me, my babies love me!

Saturday, October 17, 2009

The Voice

More of that in a bit, but first, aren't my kids great? Yesterday Deborah was wandering around Tiny Talk giving toys to other children, running up to babies who couldn't get their own and providing them with balls (she is obsessed with them - footballs, not babies). The Most Impressive Thing was seeing on seeing that a friend of hers was upset because her mum was asking for please and thank yous and the friend was not in the mood for such things, Deborah picked up the crisp said friend wanted and (drum roll) Gave It To Her. Of course we still have hitting, headbanging, howling, squeaking, and kicking to name but a few, but hey my little girl has a big heart and is not afraid to show it . I think D just does have BIG emotions, like us all. As we are not in the habit of making her to Pink to Think, then well she does and out it all comes! Michael is huge and cute and happy and sleeping better since we all sleep in the same bed. I have been trying to co-sleep with him in a separate room to Ian, so that Ian can sleep, but it seems that man snores act as a great lullaby. Of course I've jinxed it :)

Me, well it seems ok. I'm tuning to something I am calling "The Voice" and for this, one should imagine an enormous yet terribly small repellant , grimy yellow creature with lots of snot. It exhausts me and causes stress and is generally foul. My mum often speaks in "The Voice", but although I have definitely inherited it from her, I can claim complete ownership to have kept it going on my own. Basically it undermines every single thing I do, is neurotic an over complicated and believes in shouting and worse at my beautiful children. So it's there in my head and that's ok, many people have and maintain this kind of heritage. It's going to be a trick of letting be and letting go and keeping feet firmly on the floor and bum firmly on the cushion. Just going on, on beyond the shore (or whatever it says at the end of the Prjnaparamia - but really just keeping going is the point here.) Gee, who knew there so many Buddhist buzz words? This blog has been enormously helpful in this tuning process, whereas it's tortuous and achingly dull to read, it seems to help. Maybe in writing there is more of an element of listening than I am aware of. Anyway, whatever it is, thank you and Gassho.

Lots of people have this voice, think Ian has one too atm . We are arguing a little more and it seems to be coming from a place of drift. Not necessarily from each other, I sincerely hope not, just that with redundancy, toddler moods and baby induced sleep deprivation there is a lot of drift. Useful practice though, I am too concerned with correction here and need more letting be, go etc (repeat as above). This stuff is corrosive to all concerned.

Finally the great school debate - or What the Bl***y H*** do we do? A new report out says that structured learning before 6 is counter productive, this links in with what we personally already thought. Any Answers today focussed on that one question for half an hour and there was only one dissenting voice. Who would have thought it? Mums spending time with their children in a relaxed manner, allowing the children to leave at their own pace is a good and desirable thing... I am not confident in my ability to home educate, plus I think that atm, both children would benefit from being in a supportive, sympathetic environment removed from us but when they are old enough. My own fears about my lack of social ability are here, I would struggle to keep in contact with "enough people" - maybe I need to examine this one a little more? How much is enough, with The Voice, even a million would be consumed by the pessimism *laughs* How much to provide for D and M too? I am off to a LLL meeting on Tues where some other mums are planning on home educating so I will quiz them, plus their children are roughly the same age as mine which could also be useful.

Sunday, October 04, 2009

A good day

Last night I lay down for a wee while after the children were asleep and kind of didn't wake up again properly. So no post yesterday. Today we all went to see Ian's parents and his brother and sister-in-law (parents staying with brother). Slight car unhappiness for D, but placated by the application of many crunchy corn snacks.

D and M basked in grand parental adoration, and I enjoyed being able to share the babies, having someone else cook the lunch and not looking around thinking "I need to tidy that". Only drawback was that I had to try and think of non-child based conversation. Ian's brother and sister-in-law run an incredibly successful business, have an incredibly swanky house and are very lovely people. I do feel a little over-awed, but I really should value my role as a mother more. I never entertained the thought of actually making money apart from enough to live on as being anything I wanted to do, so it's needless to feel over-awed by those who quite clearly do like making money and enjoy money, and their jobs very, very much. The grand parents are brilliant conversationlists though and kept us all going. Turns out bro and SIL are doing some sort of contract for a famous sportsman's brother so nana was able to keep the convo going on that whilst I gobbled roast potatoes.

Blah, blah very vague. it's hard to remember that one is unraveling one's own little corner of the universe in one's own way sometimes and that that is all anyone can do. By unraveling I'm talking about letting go. I'm reading Bill Brysons "History of Everything" atm and it's literally blowing my mind a little bit. So much of it seems to link in with Dharma, even the whole energy is matter thing. Tonight, Bill was talking about how atoms last for 10 x teeny 35 (can't do mathmatical notation) ie an incredibly long time and how all of us will contain a billion atoms from historical persons like Shakespeare or indeed anyone/thing from the past. Amazing - even more evidence (if any were needed) of interdependence.

Friday, October 02, 2009


Not, "1,2,3,5,8,9,10" like D, but using thi blog to record how often I shout. I'm amazed at the impact of writing down "I shouted at my puking baby" - it's hit home. So although this is giving in to my perfectionist tendencies, I am finding recording this stuff useful. Need to find a way for 2 tired parents to communicate without snapping now...

Think D is getting bored with tiny talk so considering changing our standard Friday am fare. There is a local group which might be good. Ian is reading the Science of Parenting which notes that children that attend pre school before the age of 5 are better developed cognitively but less well developed emotionally. As he points out, they can catch up on the cognitive stuff. D's speech is def less well developed than other children her age, as is her ability to sit and listen but she also shows compassion. Hmmm, think we may become even more freaky, deaky lentil knitting parents.

Thursday, October 01, 2009


We *drum roll* Had A Good Day. ok so even if Momo is up every 30 mins tonight or whatever, the day was good and must be recorded. Especially as I have been such a droopy draws drama queen of late. Anyway, no shouting, 2 tantrums from D which were reasonably quickly resolved, masses of feeding from M but only to be expected what with tummy bug, working on toof number 5 and wanting to crawl so badly it hurts! D played beautifully with her blocks today with Momo and me handing out, sharing, chatting about shapes/colours and so on. Ian had a meeting in Maidenhead so we had mummy and babies time this morning and it was just lovely. Reading with D, D being able to share her bf's with Michael so much more which is hugely, hugely HUGELY impressive, just a lovely time. Lunch and then pj shopping for D - 2 pink pairs and 2 football pairs for our budding *insert name of leading womens football player because I can't which is a damn shame*. Then hot chili chocolate in a Deborah friendly cafe. Bliss.

Suspect period is coming hence huge amount of food consumed. Either that or the simply enormous amount of BF I am doing atm. D is getting very good at sharing, but part of that is sometimes feeding as often which as M often feeds every hour or 30 mins during the day means a lot of milk production. Ah well, keeps my svelte figure in trim (hollow laughter).

Good and bad are rubbish words to be using, way too primary school but currently stuck for equivalents. Then again, may be more over thinking. Hmm.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Limpet Baby

Yup the puking Momo (a traditional Tibetan dumpling and perfect nickname for M who is rather circular) needed his mummy today, and his mummy was happy to oblige. A little shouty when I was feeling overwhelmed by sheer quantity of liquid expelled plus his evident distress, but I managed to calm myself and soothe him by being there as I undressed him. Poor little guy, his t-shirt was see-through it was so wet. Moments of bliss today - Ian took Deborah to her football session (despite feeling grim himself) which left me holed up with the Momo. He fell asleep on my, so I simply edged myself back and also slept for 3/4's of an hour. Bliss! Deborah had such a great time at football though, she is the only girl there and doesn't follow instructions. It's an interesting one as I primed her by advising her to do what the teacher says but oooooo you know it's a tricky one that. Should she be primed to follow the instructions of strange men really? Too tired now, and probably over thinking.

Oh yes, the thing about the women yesterday - if only they had come up and said hello and distracted Deborah and been pleasant instead of just being someone else staring at our screaming child. Shame, missed opportunity there.


Dri9fting off to sleep last night I was thinking about what actions of mine D actively copies. Endless repetitions of "No hittin, MusnIT", endless Michael cuddles, kisses and giggles and demands for mummy cuddles, cooking, yesterday a demand I breast feed her baby doll, and spider drawings. Maybe I'm not such a terrible mother after all.... Temper still needs working on though but useful stuff to realise.

Michael and Ian ill today with upset tunmies, D has already had it and I'm hoping I have too but very mildly. Realised that my sinuses are totally blocked hence recent feelings of doom. Always gets me. So useful to blog more, although a boring read, does help me see whats going on.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Restraining Toddlers

Just how much should you restrain them when you are in a public place, and they are so out of control that they will hurt themselves, and you? Ian carried D mid tantrum today, this ended up meaning she was looped over one arm, as in all other positions she finds ways to head butt and hurt both of them. Didn't stop the gawkers though. Now, if they had been really concerned for D's welfare I would have expected them to actually come up and check us out but to keep on walking whilst turning periodically to turn and stare seemed odd. Especially as it was quite obvious that D was calming down and that, we her parents were already calm, and I don't think that most child abuse happens when one is calm and in a very public place. Although, of course, I could ALWAYS be proven wrong. Actually it has made me much more pro holding and walking not less as it gives us all quiet space for emotional dissipation and less chance for D to cause pain, which is always good.

Deliberately wrote this mornings post when I was feeling pretty grim after waking. There are some recurrent themes for me atm that I would like to do more with, and they come up biggest and most scary when I am feeling vulnerable. Later on I try and hide it, and I need to not do this. So no resolution here, just identification and awareness.

Useful stuff from the LLL this am, including me pretty candid and being assured this was all normal. At the time this didn't seem like much, but now it does. Also, stuff about making lists of triggers and making up solutions when calm, treating energy as anger and walking or reconnecting with nature (second time this has come recently) when it arises, and allowing the children to own their own feelings so that all I have to do is own my response to them. A nice thing on the sleeplessness too - I am making the choice to be there for my children (M needs me at night, D needs me 1st thing in the am, so lie-in's are rare), so don't need to resent the tiredness as it's the result of my own decisions, not something imposed upon me. To be completely honest, this doesn't quite hit the spot, as I know and honour that decision already anyway, but its good to be able to discuss in such a supportive setting.

So lots to work on. Oh yes, more too for myself about my perfectionist nature. If I wasn't so determined for my children to Have The Best Childhood I Can Possibly Give Them it may be easier... Plus, I would be less stressed, so would they and you what? Everyone might jut be that little bit happier :) Who would have thunk it?

Hot bath and bed calls, night night.
Just so tired. Not yet 9 and I'm ready for bed. Hate it, it's so insidious. Having a quieter week so feel lonely but hate that feeling and am rubbish at dealing with it. Already been too shouty and foul with the wee one this am, bleurgh.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Turning and Facing

Sooooo we had mum to visit yesterday and for the first time in ages I was so calm. Then I realised, I was finally turning and facing all my stuff rather than running terrified and lashing out, feeling overwhelmed. Need to carry on with this approach if I can work out how to do it. Suspect letting go may play a part in it somewhere.

Also, D is much calmer herself. We took her to get her shoes measured, and her feet have gone up 2 sizes in the past month. She has been on a massive growth spurt! Part of it has been mental too, hence her need to climb and run and kick balls and all sorts of other stuff. Am hoping her newly developed habit of screaming for entire car journeys is related to this need and will go when it has been expressed. Well, you win some, you lose some.

M is huge and getting huger. Teeth popping out all over the place - ok all in the mouth, and he only has 4, but it seems like a lot more. Today we finished his room (laughs - D's was finished months before she was born, how different it all is with 2 :) and he is in it as I write. Not sure hwo long he will stay in it tonight though. So much nicer to sleep cuddling my baby, and better quality sleep for both of us two.

Am reading the "Fussy Baby" book by the venerable Sears' atm., They advise burnt out mums to keep a daily journal so watch out for more of my drivel. Reading it makes my feel much less burnt out and much more grateful for my two who are both a little high need atm. But that's all good and it is an honour to have those needs to meet. Stroking Deborah tonight as she lay in bed waiting for sleep I remembered the profound sense of awe I felt when she was born, welcoming this incredibly old yet completely new being into my life and it crept over me again.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

No shouting

As it says on the box - we realised how shouty we were getting with D, mainly due to how aggressive she was getting. So we stopped, and surprise, surprise so's she. Hmmm might there be a Dharma teaching yelling out to be heard in there? Ahhh compassion and karma, once more unto the breach etc, etc. Basically it's so lovely for me too, I didn't realise just how much I was scaring me when I shout. Sometimes it's inevitable, as when D ran into the road today, but most of the time, a calm quiet voice, face to face contact at toddler level and respectful speech is much better. I was so busy triggering my own inner child's wailings I was rendering myself completely incapable of dealing with the real wailing child in front of me. Poor kid.

Another lesson coming up is how differently people see D to me and Ian. We see her as confident, loud, outgoing, happy with huge lashings of toddler, fierce intelligence and concentration. Talking to lots of other people (some of whom whose judgement I trust ;), they see her as quiet, stroppy, introverted, intense, self-content, needing space and zoning out when it's all too much, bright and with an immense concentration. Suspect the truth is somewhere in between. Must free her from my projections.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

We do have a nice life!

It's perfectly wonderful and I love it deeply. Needed to say that because I do whinge so much!

Running in ever decreasing circles of self hatred and fear recently - how to be a better, less shouty, more compassionate mum? Grasping at half thought-out ideals - I should remember deep compassion, I should remember how I felt as a child, how I feel after I have shouted, how much I love Deborah and Michael, their almost impossible preciousness to me, I should remember about innocence and dependency as a child, vulnerability and heart ache, low self esteem from conflicted parenting, I should take more responsibility - you can probably guess where this is going, needless to say the list goes on...

Today I tried to simply relax into a really good moment, just to be. The be-ing is sustaining and just is, and you never know, it may help with the grotty bits. I love my kids!

In the meantime, it's really difficult to do anything reasonable like string two words together, remember words, names, faces blah di blah on the sef pitying trip when I'm getting so little sleep. If I didn't try so hard, it would be a lot easier.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009


Ian's been redundant. More accurately he is on gardening leave, and if no more work can be found, he will receive notice of redunancy in a months time, after which he will be made redundant in 10 weeks time. He will get paid for all of that time, plus receive a lump sum so we will be ok for a while.

Now the mummy tiger in me has stopped screaming "but we have a 6 month baby, nd a toddler how could they DO this to us?" I'm feeling slightly more rational. Of course they can do it to us, and its actually been done in a very humane and generous way for which I am incredibly grateful. I have decided not to tell my mum for the simple reason she will fret and I will react, probably very negatively. Its kinder to all to simply leave it. I will mention it at some point, just when I feel strong enough not be nasty.

Huge big shock, so many friends are living under the threat of it, and yet it's actually happened to us. Oh well, has to happen to someone.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Continued from yesterday

Well I went to bed and I thought, you know I haven't written down half of what I need to remember - so here goes.

The tantrums have been a huge journey. The first step towards this phase happened a couple of days or so before Deborah's MMR. At the time I remember being so thankful as I knew that if that step had co-incided or come after the jab I would never have been able to be sure just what caused it. This is from someone that views vaccines as a social and moral duty too.

Anyway, we all carried on mainly just holding or using distraction when D had a tantrum. It was a difficult time as a lot of it was at the same time as I had hyperemisis with Michael, so spirals where we fed each other's behaviour were more common than I liked. The hyperemsis was so awful - poor D to have such a grotty mummy, 5 months is a long time when you are less than 2.

When I was in labour, I heard awful, awful stories from Ian about how difficult D was finding it without me, she wouldn't eat, was howling all morning and was told by his parents who very kindly came to look after her that " they would be there when she had finished". Needless to say this did not work, but fair enough they are of the generation that views that sort of behaviour as dangerously manipulative, and leaves babies in prams outside for hours until their next feed etc, etc. It was a difficult time for all of us and at least D was with people she loved even if none of them were getting on particularly well at that point.

When I came out of hospital D naturally was hugely jealous of M, hitting him a lot and finding me feeding him just dreadful. It was horrendous for all of us and is probably the reason why Ian now spends so much time at home - D's spark points used to be when I fed Michael and I needed extra hands to cope. Its safe to say we were not terribly consistent in how we dealt with D, I wanted her hugged but was/am shouty, Ian's tolerance was longer than mine so he would leave D for longer than I could, and that also led to tensions. Oh boy all that plus a very hungry new baby in the mix - it was a difficult time.

Although leaving D to work it out didn't work, the one benefit for me was that it gave me clues on how to find space within the high drama. It reminded me to breathe and be calm. So although it was temporarily worse for Deborah, it somehow released enough space in me to be able to cope better in the long term. Another big stepping stone was talking to a friend at a BfN support meeting about the tantrums. I finally admitted that my real sticking point was my complete and total fear that this seemingly bi-polar behaviour was just that - bi-polar in my beautiful daughter and she was going to end up committed in an asylum by her mid-twenties (why so specific? I suspect more than a hint of transference) and there was NOTHING I could do about it. Several swallows later and staring out the window (I really didn't want to start howling myself, the friend was doing far more than duty calls for already) the enormity of my fears hit me and I listened to them. At the same group, another mum shouted at me as Deborah hit her much smaller, younger daughter. It clicked then, that D is my one and only priority and she is just, just, "just" a child, behaving as children (and me on occasions) do. I am responsible to her and no one else in that situation. Naturally I apologised to the mum and removed D but it was a useful, if painful moment.

Somehow we muddled on and luckily just started to hold Deborah when she was howling. The space she needed was not physical space on the floor, but loving space in our arms whilst she sobbed and screamed and raged. Then I read the book I mentioned in the previous post and suddenly, thankfully it all made sense. Now I can see which bits of me are reacting also, as my own childhood has left me damage and really wanting to lash out so much. More importantly I hope that the loving space in our arms is helping D's brain to grow loving neurons so she can become more resilient. There's something to be said for supporting someone in pain that surely means long term mental illness is less, not more likely. And that's why I think our society is so sad. So pre-disposed to ignoring our own emotions having been taught they are wrong we continue to suppress our own and those of our children and so it continues. Heartbreaking.

This is not to suggest any of this is fait accomplis by any measure. Still a work in progress, but hopefully one we are creating together and not at odds over. Time will tell.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Our tantrum journey

Reading this post really made me think about what we've been up too. For various reasons (inexperience and a culture geared towards disbelieving and belittling children's emotions helped) we were rubbish at dealing with Deborah's tantrums. More specifically, we were taking it personally, and felt put upon almost and that she should meet our expectations and DO something, DEAL WITH IT and other obnoxious-itites. We went though the whole gamut of holding her, taking to her, time out, saying "we will be here when you've finished, you can have a cuddle then" and you know what, surprise, surprise nothing "worked".

Then, thankfully I read this book and realised that actually it is my little girl crying, in pain, anger hurt, frustration whatever. It doesn't matter, she is just crying (and headbanging, hitting, shoving whatever) and our job as parents is just to love her and hold her in that space so she can deal with it. Same job as always, nothing else required. And now we do hold her, and yes she still tantrums but it's a lot less, shorter when it happens and we're all a lot less grumpy.

Why are we (and by this I mean as a society) so geared towards punishment for distress? So sad! As the play on radio 4 said today (about a french woman falling in love with a nazi soldier and being persecuted by her village) "Hate is easy, but love is so much harder".

Monday, July 06, 2009

Our holiday was fabulous!

A week in a folding camper with two smallies and two biggies may not sound much but it was heaven. More of that later (prob not tonight).

Can't stop thinking about death right now. Having children really puts one right into the whole stream of it all - being childless meant although I was terrified of death I was somehow more apart from it, but now I AM part of the whole maiden mother crone trilogy. Their youth marks my becoming older. Really dont know what to do with this one, having the screaming heebie jeebies is my common reaction but not useful. Walking to the toilet block with Deborah holding my hand, seeing all the caravans coming and going, I couldn't stop just feeling the impermanence of it all. One time I left her behind as I was going for a shower and as she watched me go I was so so aware that soon it will be me watching and waiting. Michael has teeth and stands and rolls and eats (so far only sand but you get the picture) and it's all so darn quick! And I love them so so so much and know I will not always be there for them. They will also face the speed of time, and I can't protect them from that or their own mortality and stupidly I feel guilty.

So melodramatic I apologise. Buddhists are supposed to be able to deal with this stuff, at the very least it's the heart of our practice. I must contct the Lama somehow. Probably not a visit as even though the fact of my own physical impernance and insignificance in the face of the universe terrifies me, sadly not more than navigating a trip to the big smoke with two small children.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Be the change you want to see in the world

or in this case, our children. Thinking today, it's been about falling in love all over again. Those precious first few moments seeing that sweet face you've felt for nine months, the first feed, the coming home, the becoming a sibling, mum of two, all of that stuff. In all the midst of that, as well cleaning, cooking, eating, an amazing love affair is going on with mum and new baby and old baby is pushed out. Now we are learning to love as a four not as a three, the love affair is spreading. Our parenting is now coming from that love and I realised that that was what Gandhi meant.

Realising just why obediance parenting just doesn't quite do it for me. My spiritual practice is so limited, but it is all pervasive and every all at once. So I simply have to try to do it this way.

Also, I am a good enough mum but not a perfect one. This is a good thing!

Almost unbearably precious

Folding clothes for our holiday (specifically the childrens clothes) and reading on the internet about another wee one murdered by those caring for her. Each scrap of material, each scribbled spider, each random bread stick, each abandoned bib is so precious to me because it means that we have children. The loss of any of it is unbearable to think about.

Thursday, June 04, 2009


One day without a major tantrum.  Possibly due to having had a good lunch, woken later, had lots of snacks in the morning, no sleep after lunch, cooler weather, more hands on intervention possible as Ian around and Michael asleep or happy at salient points, and more hugs.  Only one other child walloped so today feels like a good day.  Not quite so ready to ask permission to be a mum today :)

All points to how tantrums are a culmination of lots of other stuff and how little a toddler brain can really cope with.  I think I expect far too much, simply because she walks, whereas really she is a baby on wheels who can talk.  I'm rubbish in the heat too...

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Independence and dependency

Most accurately summed up by D today.  Requesting to sit on my lap and sing "All the little ducks".  We usually do the movements for her, but no, today she did them all herself, carefully removing my "helping" hands so she could.  Such a thing, wanting mummy's lap for the springboard, mummy to sing for the communal effort but needing the space to do her own thing too.  Pure toddler, distilled to a t.  Good on her!  Something for me to remember next tantrum time too (not necessarily just D's tantrums...). 

A week is a long time for little ones.

In the last week, D has started to use words like "and" "another" be more physically demonstrative, demand kisses, have the most enormous strops after waking up in the afternoon, show increased awareness of where things live in the house and replace without being asked, help clean Michael's bum, ask for nappy change when she needs one, continue to increase her straight backed gait up and down stairs, play computer games with her daddy.

In the last week Michae has sprouted1 (but quite possibly 2) 2nd incisor tooth (bottom left and maybe top right), turned on his side from his back, sat up longer and longer with an increasingly straight back, gone to sleep on his own, become more and more dextrous, passed an object from one hand to another.

I am working on the practice of their cries being my meditation bells.  This is because I have been so involved in it all, I've been crowding them out of their own stuff which is not helpful to anyone.  It's hard, the anxiety is now more acute, but does pass.  It's also weird as what actually happens is that I feel I am being very spacious when D is having a tantrum, but looking back what I have actually been doing is just focussing on staying calm, but with huge levels of underlying panic.  So I don't really know what's going on and in all honesty I'm kind of trying to not try to hard to find out!

I'm also going to bed earlier, so night night! 

Sunday, May 31, 2009

And then...

.... she puked all weekend!  Poor sausage!  So there was jolly good reason to be behaving so dreadfully.  Oh well.  All that, pus an intellectual growth spurt meaning many more sentences, able to go up and down stairs straight backed with no support and climbing in and out the camper on our inaugral trip last weekend.  He on the other hand has sprouted the corner of an incisor.  At 4 months!  I blame the father (Ian "grew" his at 3 months).  Today feeling awed and grateful for them.  Children are constant miracles.  

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Please, please, please let this be a phase.

So much screaming today.... At least less headbanging but soooooo much screaming.  D is going through a real mummy mummy MUMMY phase, and now has the cold I just did. As well as getting over the one she just had. Soooooooo in about a month, goodness how many colds and schniffles between us, me with mastits, M with a growth spurt, and D just screeeeeaaaaaaming.  I managed to only shout once today, which for me was a huge achievement.  Not at all hard to see where she gets it from.  I so neeeeeed to model better behaviour. 

Sunday, May 17, 2009

You know...

it wasn't just me who lost it, D wasn't so good either.  But after a while I felt kind of refreshed - I think I'd let go of my part in it, and seeing that all I could do at that time was feed Michael, well thats all I did.  Horrible for D, and tricky to be learning about sharing when you are in such a necessary egocentric phase, but well, that's just the way it was.  Somewhere along the line I learnt something useful about my stuff being my stuff, and D's being her's. Of course I am her mother, but sometimes I just can't make the good stuff happen.  Then it's important for me to learn new skills in supporting and deaing with stress.  Not justifying, just learning, travelling along with my beautifu little girl.

Felt for her this week though, the head banging came back, but then she has just had a bug so possible sinus infection, and had a poorly mummy who was glued to the sofa whincing with a big fat baby permanently attached. Going to get her checked  out at the gp to double make sure all is well, following an at home day today, with lots of mummy time she seems calmer.

As an aside, we al went to the Annual Nestle Demo on Saturday.  Mike Brady had to shout very loudly at one point over the loud cries of "wwwwwhhhhheeeeeeeeeeeeee".  D was very happy to find someone to run round with, it was a little bizarre when the child with her picked up the small cardboard coffin and ran round with it as a hat, and of course D joined them underneath it. Thankfully the small black baby doll that D had managed to remove a leg from meaning it lost its pants had been reinstated by this point....

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Later on

it turned into an exciting game involving guinea pig bedding and the rest of her tea set, which then involved mummy, hoover and washed tea set and replacement of bedding with dried beans to satisfy that pouring need.  Just as I was doing well at pretending to be a good parent, Michael really got into his stride with his growth spurt, Deborah started to feel really tired, left out and jealous, and I, dear reader, lost it.  Thankully Ian was here to become the calm parent and he held Deborah until she fell asleep.  I spent the rest of the day feeding Michael.  Wanted to bog to remind myself how it can all turn and turn back again on the eye of a needle.  There's something in there for me to remember...


(reposted from FB because it deserves to be, you'll see)

"D has a habit of crumbling biscuits on the floor, she seems to really enjoy the sensation. Needless to say we don't enjoy the after effects... Had just done some vague hoovering in the living room as a friend is coming round, and D crumbled her oatcake. As I was rushing to the loo I asked if she could put the crumbs on her plate. I came downstairs to find an extremely industrious daughter picking the crumbs up, putting them in a plastic casserole dish, running into the kitchen, lifting the lid of the bin up and throwing the crumbs inside. Fine she was doing one crumb at a time, but it's blown me away!"

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Mastitis (again)

aren't anti biotics wonderful?

Saturday, May 09, 2009

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Oh this is good

Using this blog I can see the last time I was really shouty, and it's 2 weeks ago!  Which is definitely an improvement.  Of course, now I've blogged it I will be shouty for evermore, but feel for D and M that they had a 2 week break.

Must remember today...

.... because it may never happen again!  I had the children from 8.30 am to 2.30 pm completely on my own and all was fine.  We all actually rather enjoyed it.  True we got to this morning's group an hour late, but that actually suited D better so was a good discovery.

On a perhaps more interesting note, speaking to a friend yesterday on the phone, she asked how the children were, and I replied, "Oh great, they're getting on, they LOVE each other" she laughed and said "Oh that's just a phase".  It made me realise how contrived I've been (understandably but even so its there), and how worried and how, well you get the picture by now... Another important reminder to LET GO!

Speaking of letting go, came into the room this am to find Michael gagging on the oatcake his sister had tenderly inserted into that tempting baby mouth of his.  Much removal of oatcakes and joint binning followed.  Then return to find M about to fed a rice cake, more removal etc.  Not so much baby led weaning as toddler led - D obviously doesn't realise that we dont wean till 6 months now dear and is old school in her approach.  Mind you, Prof Gideon Lack suggests we are more prone to food allergies because we are not exposed to minute scraps of potential allergens in just this way, hence the rise of peanut allergies etc.  Look him up, interesting stuff.

I need to move the snack cupboard I think...

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

She loves me

Yeah, yeah, yeah!

Yup, D is getting over her acutely heart broken stage at Michael's arrival, and if I am honest, so am I.  Never of case of loving one or the other, or doubting my capacity to love both, more about how to fit it all in.  Somehow we are fitting enough in, prob not as much as before (sneaky suspicion this may be better), but enough.  We are healing together which is as it should be.  Meanwhile Michael is doing just fine thank you very much - not knowing anything different and being a very small baby, copious amounts of boob, sleep, cuddles and interesting big sister to watch suit him well indeed.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

So far...

... missed the bus, put my undies on back to front and grumped at D.  The first 2 dont matter. 

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Broad St today

Suddenly hit by the certainty of everyone's Buddha nature.  No more than that, and I can only remember having the flash, not how it felt, did was or anything.  But wow! Kissing Michael's head, ruffling Deborah's hair, contact with my children transports me to bliss.

A beautiful day, thank you.

Three Little Words...

.. Feeding on demand.  Have worked out I am just going to be exhausted whatever I do, it's not D's added feeding needs that are exhausting me.  However, not responding to them leads to tantrums which do!  So more full-fat coffee and earlier nights for me, whilst the behemoth and his sister suckle to their hearts content.

Realised this am that D mainly used to regulate her temper through nursing, and because I have been twitchy about how much she is feeding atm, she has not only had to find another way - more tantrums- but has had an ambivalent mummy to cope with also.  No wonder she has been more frustrated, plus the whole being 2 and having a new brother thing....

The Behemoth (otherwise known as Michael) is doing an excellent job of a human nipple clamp, a skill which I wish he hadn't learnt for another 20 years and certainly not on his mother.  Not stopping him from expanding at an incredible rate (I swear if you watched him you could actually see it) and despite hitting 12 weeks today, his 3-6 month clothes are working hard to contain him.  Woohoo for ebay and clothes bundles! Sadly those for post-partum podgy mummies are not so exciting. 

Monday, April 20, 2009

Lovely Afternoon

Sat in the garden with lots of garden toys, 2 toddlers and 1 baby covered in sun cream, 1 other mummy and snacks.  The chocolate got everywhere, as did the sand and water and my goodness dont mention the sunblock, but we had fun.  Need more days like this!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Managing Anger

So far I am managing to....
1. reduce shouting
2. not belitte or call names
3. be very specific about what needs to happen
4. sit on my hands
5. speak quietly
6. walk away

I still need to 
1. be more consistent
2. offer more food (to myself, Deborah and Michael)
3. take more deep breaths for immediate distance

I need this blog

Looking back at some of the posts I realise I am not as bad as I often think.  This week's big revalation was that I don't always shout when I am angry.  Not doing so well this morning, feel literally drained as both children being milk monsters, but we are about to go out for curry.  This will continue to be a very dull and tedious blog, but I need someplace to find a mirror.