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Small steps (and taking my own advice)

Well, I have no idea where this month has gone. Clearly there's the small matter of 24-hour parenting through the Half Term holiday, and the all-important quicker-than-a-normal-month-ness of February, but I feel like it was Christmas, then I blinked and noticed March had got in on the act. It's just as well nobody uses cheques these days, as I would definitely still have the wrong year. My heart says it's about 2010, and my head has not the faintest idea.

Life has been feeling good, but there's a measure of overwhelm creeping in, and that disconcerting feeling that the year is flying by without me really having a handle on things. In my 90daysdry blog I wrote about that sense of being overwhelmed, of expecting too much of ourselves and needing to step back and look at any small achievement in order to regain a bit of perspective. But I can feel myself reaching a point where I'm not actually sure what I've achieved or what I'm supposed to be achieving. A sta…
Recent posts

Seeing 'Alone'

So, this may post be a bit 'out there', but I've had a reflective kind of weekend.

On Saturday, we had a major victory when The Cat (my 8-yr-old with autism) actually agreed to go to a birthday party. He doesn't get invited to many, and when I saw this was a swimming party I was pretty sure he'd refuse to go. Not because he doesn't swim - he has his own unique but surprisingly effective style of 'catty paddle' - but because he'd never been to a swimming party or even to the pool where this party was being hosted, and, as with most autistic kids, going somewhere he can't imagine brings on huge anxiety. Frankly he'd rather be in bed. In his pants (if we're lucky), with the (actual feline) cat. Probably re-reading his favourite passage in his current favourite book for the 977th time.

Anyway, after google searches to show the pool and chats with others about what happens at a swimming party, he went. I was required to stay poolside at all t…

A Mum-Care Basic

I've had a couple of really interesting conversations about 'care' with friends recently, and exactly what self-care or Mum-care might look like.

My take on this is that it will be different for everyone, depending on what they need on a particular day, or at a particular time in their lives. Just as we look at our kids and figure that sometimes they need a duvet day but sometimes we can push them out of their comfort zone in order to try something new, or some days they'll only eat their favourite food but other days you can slip in some broccoli, we need to judge how far we can push ourselves. As a parent of three SEN kids, I'm tuned in to their anxiety and 'triggers' to a degree that some have jokingly called supernatural and others have dismissed as coincidence, but it's real and it's all through fear of What Might Happen if I miss the signs of need. So why on earth are we Mums so utterly hopeless at applying this sort of awareness to ourselves?…

The Mum-Person

Once upon a time there was a Person. She had a load of hang-ups and was a bit complicated, like most People, but she also had dreams and when she got an idea into her head, she would pursue it. Then the Person got married. She was still the Person, but kind of a Person with Benefits, and, well, A Mortgage. She was pretty happy and has the photo albums to prove it, although, as with all young married People, she probably didn't fully appreciate how free she was at that time. There were some sadnesses that haunted her, but also made her grasp life to the fullest, which is how she had come to marry someone in the UK rather than worrying about the details of having her roots - her family, her history, her culture and, even more seriously, her favourite foods - in New Zealand. (Pineapple Lumps and Bluebird Chips are easy to post, after all, and then a Kiwi food shop opened up just 5 minutes from her front door in Shepherd's Bush. All was well.) Then she became a Mum, which was the …