If it were common – would it hurt less?

*** Trigger warning: This post discusses child loss, grief and miscarriage ***

Grief. Loss. Pain. Sadness. These are universal emotions. If all the feelings of the world were placed on a scale, I daresay the darker side would draw lower. Yet, that’s not what we see. Not what we are taught. Happiness is to be prized and paraded. Sadness is to be swallowed and hidden away.

I’ve thought a lot about this since Xavier’s death. The reactions to child loss, and to loss in a broader sense. What is acceptable in grief and what is not. You are told there is no guide book. But believe me, there are a host of unwritten rules. Read more

Yearning for Rest

Yearning for Rest

My youngest was nearly one. The mythical “sleeping-through” remained mythical. And from the accounts of my new mum girlfriends, we had all been fed the same fantasy. None of us were getting a full eight hours. My very bones were weary with tiredness. It was impossible to fathom how we could continue and yet we all did. I yearned, yearned for rest.

I remember talking to mum about it. How weary I was. My dear mother has a way of seeing herself in every story. So she told me about how tired she was. As an aside, if you’d like to frustrate a person to tears, be a person without a baby telling a person with a baby how tired you are. Of course, new parents don’t have the monopoly on exhaustion, but for the love of all that’s holy – just give it to them. They are honestly only just hanging on.

And while my mothers “empathy” rankled she then said something that gave me pause “sometimes I wish for just a short stay in hospital, nothing serious of course, just a little rest.” Read more

How not to worry about the little stuff

We all feel it. Those times when we are unsettled. Perhaps a few things haven’t gone our way. Little things hold fast and refuse to let go. An equilibrium is unsettled and unwelcome thoughts keep rising despite being pushed down. It’s when we know we shouldn’t sweat the small stuff and yet the small stuff is dripping out of our pores. The word discombobulated comes to mind. That itchy, unpleasant discomfort. I’m not talking about the big issues here. I’m not talking about grief or loss. This isn’t a post about what to do when something shakes your life. This is about how to wrest control back from the pesky little thoughts that have no business taking up so much mind space. Read more

Holding onto Holiday Feels

I drafted this post relaxing in a camp chair, listening to the ocean and watching the sand and waves. By the time it’s published, I’ll be in thick of back to school preparation and the working year.

The calm will be a distant memory. It’s funny how that happens. We take holidays to relax and recharge and the recharge fades as soon as routine sets in.

I wish I could take the rested me into the stress of normal life. I wonder if I can.  Read more

When the silence is actually drowning

when the silence is drowning post natal depression

It’s been a couple of months since you saw each other. She had her third baby a few weeks ago and you have been meaning to visit. You sent a card and some flowers and received a thankful text message with a series of gorgeous photos. You wonder if she’s doing okay and make a mental note to phone.

Then your toddler throws cereal on the floor, your phone buzzes with a message from work and your seven year old reminds you of a project that has to be completed that day. All of your busy crowds out thoughts of your friend and her three tiny children.

A few days later you see a Facebook status update and she looks all happy and glowy with her new baby and you exhale. It’s okay. She’s okay. She doesn’t need you. Read more