Saturday, 20 July 2013

Meltdown

Just had my first emotional meltdown in quite a while - crying while doing the washing up!  It all started over chicken muck - which is all over our grass in the garden at the moment because we have truly free range chickens.  This wouldn't be so bad, but it means the children are running around getting it on their feet, because they're not wearing shoes in this weather, and then treading it into the house.  Add to that the stress of two-year old initiated potty training and a series of minor infections and injuries for the children and I start calling myself a bad mother and wondering how I will cope over the summer holidays without our normal routines.
Immediately darling husband starts to suggest solutions - spend loads of money penning the chickens into the lower garden, moving to a less country style house, getting rid of the chickens....  But it's not about the chickens, or even the mess, it's about me worrying about the health of the children and wondering if my laid back attitude to dirt is actually harmful, worrying about their emotional health and if they have enough real experience of my love.  My solutions are therefore more manic - insist the children wash hands every five minutes, check them over for dirt, infection and worries, regimentally plan every moment in our lives so that I feel in control.
But I know that's neither going to happen nor work if it did.  What I need is to feel strong again, to know that I can be a good mother - that I am a good mother.  That despite the frequent whining, the children are happy, despite the odd minor injury they are healthy, and despite the chaos all around some days, everything comes together somehow by the Grace of God!  Of course there's also learning to laugh at the crisis - for example my two year appearing from the garden a moment ago covered in her own poo...  How she managed it I don't know - why the other four with her didn't notice I can imagine.  Still, crisis over and we live to fight and laugh another day.

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