It's easy to think that as a parent coach we have it all sorted and our families and children are problem free and easy! However, we still struggle with the challenges that every parent does - This weeks blog is from the heart of one of my coaches - I hope you enjoy her honesty and openness.............
I loved the newborn stage - both mine loved routine and food and thankfully sleep! I'm not being smug when I say this but give me a newborn any day of the week! It was almost robotic, they were just so content and predictable and I was completely at my leisure to enjoy every single moment with them. But they are not newborn anymore and they are growing up. FAST! Suddenly they feel very three dimensional to me, lots of different emerging traits and characteristics and things are becoming more complex.
Since the Easter holidays I have charted unfamiliar parenting territory with my eldest who is five. For the first time I think I have felt properly out of control and......useless.
We flew back into the Spring term. We'd had an action packed break, and there were after school parties to look forward to and lighter evenings but just days in, something happened.
My Little Man has started having nocturnal 'episodes'. I'm not exaggerating, they are irrational, noisy, distressing and completely exhausting and that's just from my point of view ....imagine how he must feel! It's late, we are both frightened and we are both losing valuable sleep.
I want to help, rescue, fix, soothe, reassure, and point blank make them stop - but when one starts, I feel completely at a loss as to how to handle it.
He doesn't want physical touch, he doesn't really know what is wrong, he is all long limbs and flailing arms, he is 'mummy resistant' and I feel like I am failing him. I have read everything you can think of about night terrors, nightmares, sleep walking...but I find that right now, I can't categorise it. It doesn't fit a mould - and neither does he! My little man is changing and growing and I have to admit, I feel like I have lost a little of my swagger - I find myself wondering "can I still cut this whole mummy thing"??????
He deals with an awful lot for a 5 year old:
Not to mention we are a blended family and he has step parents and two homes to his name at a very tender age. He makes me feel immeasurably proud and humble as he is the happiest, most endearing soul but I feel worried that he might be worried....and I feel a mixture of intense responsibility and guilt about it too! When does it all become too much at that age?! Is this some kind of mental and emotional release? Is it normal?!
Trying to put it into perspective over a morning cuppa (this is a bit of a reoccurring blog theme I think!) I tell myself that it will only last for a short amount of time - and it isn't all night, every night. We are dealing with it as best we can - we talk openly about it together, soon as he can let me, I cuddle him lots, we have audio stories and meditation cds for a bit of relaxation and thank goodness for Twinings English Breakfast blend! I don't always deal with it perfectly but I am trying and learning.
But he is my baby...and even my job can't entirely save me now! I am just like everybody else - I am human and its emotional. We are all products of our past and dealing with our present and none of us can see into the future. Little people are no different are they? Just mini versions with fewer words and means of expressing themselves. I have an almost new found respect for them, because I feel like I am only just realising how very human they are.
Nothing is forever, we are going through something new for us, but like I keep telling him, after night time comes the morning and calm (of sorts! After all, we still have to face the school run!) But when calm has been restored - things feel brighter...the kettle goes on ;)
A new day begins.