As an antenatal educator, I am often advised of the many ways in which I failed to prepare people for what it's really like to have a baby, and find yourself relentlessly on call to a tyrannical but adored bundle of cute, who speaks no language that you know, and for whose health and well-being you are entirely responsible.
The boys are now nine and seven years old and I continue to store up our more amusing conversations. My kids don't read my blog (yet). When they do, I hope they will thank me for recording the innocence of their childhood, rather than resenting all this exposure. I love you boys, more than you can imagine.
I read a post this morning from a friend who was feeling guilty because she lost patience with her toddler and wondering how to manage her frustrations. Following this I have just returned from what can only be described as the shopping trip from hell with three children who managed to fight and complain their way around the entire store. Loudly.
This is my third round of toddlerhood and yet I'm still learning. Or perhaps my memory has been kind and just wiped out the horror of the past two times. Anyway. Here's my quick guide to the seven stages of a tantruming toddler. You've been warned. Reminded. Or are sitting there nodding your head because it's happening right now.
Dealing with any depression or mental health issue during a time of general good cheer and celebration can be markedly more challenging than at other times. The Christmas period, although wonderful, can sometimes be stressful and overwhelming too. Here are my top five tips for reducing symptoms and improving mood.
I know the days spent entertaining the baby and toddler at home by myself are likely to increase now that winter is on it's way... As I can't be arsed to find the rain-cover and spend several hours working out how to re-attach the foot-muff to the buggy. So. Here's my guide to making the most of the rainy days stuck in the house with small people...
I don't see my son's autism as bad thing, nor do I see it as a superpower. My innate operating system is Windows 8. He runs on OS X. I basically understand OS X, it just takes me a while to sometimes 'get' it. He thinks Windows 8 is fucking idiotic and makes no sense whatsoever. Perhaps he has a point.
Like most of my friends, I waited till my mid thirties to procreate. My body was more than ready, but mentally I was just about there. Whatever medicine, or medics tell us, no woman can put down roots until she is ready. And at 35, I was only just about there, but I also knew the risks that being 'older' would bring with it.