Follow me if you will as I try to navigate through the ups and downs of my world.
I'm writing this blog to help me make sense of all that has happened - from my diagnosis with non-Hodgkins lymphoma while pregnant with my third child in May 2008, through to my reflections on chaotic family life as I try to pick up the pieces of my life again.
The kids are so small, and I'm working hard to keep us all safe and to stay in remission.
Stay with me - it won't be all doom and gloom I promise!
I have to confess to feeling a bit worried about it beforehand, especially about the photograph! But it's not too bad, and generally I'm pleased with the piece. It is just possible that I was one of the first customers to visit our local newsagent this morning!
Thanks so much to everyone for your lovely, supportive comments.
Sometimes my children make me feel so angry. I'm not alone.... am I?
I won't describe the particular incident which triggered my meltdown (not too strong a term for it, I assure you!)last night, apart from mentioning the constant struggle involved in getting a certain son to do as he's told. Not all the time - that would just be unreasonable - but just some of the time. Just some of the time, after a long day at work, I would appreciate a bit of consideration and a bit of peace and quiet. The problem is that when I'm tired, Ed has more energy and determination to resist me than I have energy and determination to deal with him like a perfect parent.
Sometimes our whole household seems full of strife and noise - despite us all loving each other and despite my resolutions to deal with the kids with more calm, more patience and more consistency.
Maybe I'm just too old to be a parent. I wish I'd had them in my twenties. Would that have made a difference?
Happy New Year to you all. As usual things have conspired to keep me away from the old blog - so I'm making new resolutions to remedy that. The problem is that after I've worked all day and marked and prepared lessons for the next; in between sorting the kids out, making packed lunches, going to swimming lessons (kids, not me), writing and reading and shopping, cooking and cleaning (phew!) there's not time for much else.
I don't mean to relegate my beloved blog and any readers who may still be out there, to the bottom of the very big teetering pile but the problem is that you're all so quiet compared to the clamour which echoes through the rest of my life.
So.... a catch-up. Christmas came and went in a blur. The kids were hyper - Ed at the age of 8 still waking up at the crack of dawn whenever there's a sniff of excitement and Martha and Hattie swirling through the days filled with everything Christmassy. For me, I guess it was the first Christmas since my cancer diagnosis (3 years ago I was going through radiotherapy)that I didn't wonder with quite such a heavy feeling inside whether that Christmas wouldn't be my last. I suppose I'm beginning to have just a little faith that I may stay alive for a few more years yet. I have an oncolgy appointment on Wednesday - just a check-up, but just walking through the doors of the hospital can make me feel shaky and less than sure about anything.
I read bit over Christmas - Look at Me, by Jennifer Egan which I thought was really interesting and dark, and I've just started Saint Maybe by Anne Tyler to cheer me up about returning to work. I love Anne Tyler for her easy readability and explorations of family relationships. I've read most of her books but gloriously I've missed this one. The problem is that I'm so tired when I get into bed that I fall asleep almost instantly. A least it spins out the pleasure for longer!
I'm also in the middle of applying for child psychotherapy clinical training for next year. Yup - finally I've decided on a career change. The course is scary in it's demands: I have to start regular analysis before I start. That is scary - I'm a little wary of meeting whatever might be lurking in my subconscious. And it's a doctorate which is another scary thing - if I ever had any brain power I think it's disintegrating fast. But it's worth a try. I completed the pre-clinical training while I was pregnant with Ed, and had intended to continue straight on to the clinical training however life (in the shape of two more kids, and cancer) kind of temporarily got in the way. Hattie starts school next year - and now is as good a time as ever to start the training seeing as I have to earn for a long time to come -I'm still hoping to become a full-time person of leisure, but it's not really looking likely any time soon!
Excitingly (although I'm shrinking with horrified anticipation at the same time) I have an article coming out in the Family Guardian this coming Saturday - yes, the 14th January. Read it if you haven't anything more interesting to do which I'm sure that you have. But I did write it which is pleasing. Bit worried (understatement of the decade) about the photo. Hope the beautiful kids eclipse the frazzled and 'seen better days' mother.
I'm a mother with three kids under eight whose demands, squabbles and general existence take up unimaginable swathes of time. I've also secretly always fancied myself as a bit of a writer - though not with much evidence to show for it - so maybe writing this will prod me in the right direction. We'll see.