I wanted to respond to each and every private message and FB thread reply after the amazing outpouring of kindness, understanding and empathy following my emotionally charged #TTWDee post.
I know amazing people and awe-inspiring parents. Some of you have dealt with situations I am not sure I would make it through without being forever changed or fading away from a broken heart. But you carry on. You fight through unimaginable pain and struggles, and you, and your children (and in some cases the memories of your children) change everyone who you meet or who you share your story with.
Despite feeling alone and beating ourselves up for our parenting choices and our children’s struggles, we are not alone in losing our cool from time to time. Some people yell more than others, some are a bit sweary (I am very sweary indeed!), but you know what, I believe that we’re all doing our best. And one of the strongest things any of us can do is admitting moments of weakness and asking for help or support when we feel like we are drowning.
I won’t go into where we are at right now. It’s not great, but we are working on it and going to make some serious changes and provide more routine among the chaos that is Hobbit life.
Feel like I should share the fact that it has been a month of learning and epiphanies. Spending a week with my kids and mother and mother in law in Hawaii opened my eyes to how different and wonderful the people in my family are. And also, how completely infuriating and impossible I find them all sometimes.
Shepherding 7 Hobbits around 6 ports, 4 islands, 4 rental cars in 7 days was a dream realized for most of us. But it highlighted what a diverse and complicated group of individuals we are.
Adam loses his temper when things change too quickly for him to process, or nobody takes the time to explain what is happening, or if there is far too much stimulation. For the first time in his young life I fully comprehended this. He is not a monster, he is not a bad kid, he is struggling and I have let him down by not paying enough attention to his individual needs. He craves more structure, and that is something we will have to learn to provide.
After arriving home, being the last out of the airport after five full flights arrived and I tried to rush through, yet still attempted to be polite and accommodating to other passengers pushed me over the edge. Watching people push in, change lines, and do nothing but stare disapprovingly at us as Adam had a meltdown and the baby cried because he had a full nappy and we were ALL quite clearly exhausted.
A comedy of errors after already feeling like a spoiled, loud and sweary laughing stock meant I broke down. Again.
I cried. I do that a lot lately. Too often.
So yes. I bawled for the second time in as many weeks.
I am not ashamed of a single tear.
Not a single tear will be wasted.
I’m smart enough and strong enough to know when I am being ridiculous, and I am also smart enough and strong enough to stand up and keep trying to be a better parent and person every day I am alive.
And the biggest part of that right now is learning to take a deep breath and try and listen and make good decisions, just like I am trying to teach Adam to do.
Hope something in this meandering blog is helpful to someone, and I wish you all the strength and courage you need to keep pushing through the triumphs and challenges you are set today and every day.
Thanks for reading.