Not quite myself

Imagine that feeling you have forgotten something really important or have lost something really important, or have a test or an interview or an exam iminently, imagine having that feeling constantly for hours on end and days on end, imagine every time you try to fall asleep you feel like you wont ever wake up again so much so that you stop yourself from falling asleep and find it impossible to relax and feel like you are going to have heart failure or stop breathing, feeling that your chest will cave in and your head will explode, going to the doctors or a and e departments convinced you are having a heart attack and then knowing after being checked that there isnt anything majorly or physically wrong with you and yet you feel so poorly, so weak, so ill, so sick unable to enjoy normal tasks or function, having to go to bed all pale and wan and victorianesque feeling “strange”, “funny” and just “not yourself” as though you are on the outside looking in on the world, and so many headaches and blocked ears and indigestion and sickness and feeling hot and tingly. I would not wish these feelings on anybody. 

When I am feeling good I feel great I give my all I give my heart and all my energy yet when suffering these “anxiety” attacks I can’t give anything much at all, I can’t make simple decisions, I can’t function I can’t live my life normally and I hate it , I hate how my family have to put up with it, that they have to see me this way. Mental illness isn’t just those that feel depressed or bipola or want to give up life there are so many different types anxiety and stress and worry and panic attacks are real and common and for me it is that I want to live more than anything, Im scared to die and I want to be as happy as can be and live a long life so much that I want everything to be perfect all of the time, that I’m constantly reaching out for storybook happiness and the strive for happiness and perfection takes over to the point where I can’t even enjoy the little moments and happy days sometimes, because I am frustrated and never satisfied, people say I am too open in my blogs but for me I feel it important to tell people so that they know they are not alone, and so that people can understand and that I don’t want or mean to be this way, and when I have three gorgeous children and a kind husband I can’t just hide under a duvet and sleep off these episodes I still have to be a mummy and function and face the world but if I dont speak so much or smile so much or don’t seem my usual self please forgive me and know that I will soon be Milly again.

Who am I?

Who am I? am I who I have become? Am I just a Mum ?am I a version of myself or of the Milly yet to come? did I get lost in wonderland? or did I bury my head in the sand? did I do the things I thought I would? or did I settle with the things I thought I should, am I still finding  it all out? can they hear me even if I shout? Is that me Im looking at? or could I try and wear a different hat, adjust my lipstick thicken my brow,sing a song then take a bow, am I just rolling through a door or do I need to land on a different floor? am I leading down the path or just following the rabbit? is this becoming quite a habit?never satisfied or pleased  is this the ending that you teased? Or a road we were meant to cruise with ease ? 

Christmas 

We all get stressed at christmas trying to make it “pictureperfect” running around like headless turkeys buying presents and food, this year we wanted to simplify our christmas as a family with a tight income and three children to buy for, each year we have been a parent( our eldest now 10)we have learnt and realised that the pointless things, the unwanted unnecessary gifts are just a waste of  money, we try to homemake many of our gifts for other people, we dont buy for many of the adults in the family or outside the family and only give a small gift of chocolate or a homemade gift to children in the family other than our own, each year we have spent less on our children and the presents under the tree have lessened rather than multiplyed, each child getting a small number of presents from us, and as the children have grown the need for numerous toys and plastic and novelty items has reduced, their understanding behind the real meaning and celebration of christmas and giving thoughtful gifts has increased and we have become stronger about what we want as a family at christmas time. We dont have a big excessive christmas dinner either and we dont spend lots of money on luxury food or alcohol, it is just one day that comes around each year,why put yourself through hardship, and strain for one day, just enjoy being with those that you love enjoy the twinkling lights on your tree, the carols, the family time, the great tv, and the time off work and school.Merry Christmas everyone.

35 years of me

Well today I turned 35 and I feel good and grateful and thankful for the years that I have been on the planet creating the story that is my life thus far,the 5 ft 1 and a bit of me that may be small but fierce, and  I enjoy growing older as with every new line on my face and crinkle and crepe and grey hair, I feel stronger more confident more liberated and more me as I am evolving and growing to become the person I really want to be, the happiest version of myself, creating the story, writing the chapters, capturing the moments and memories and laughter lines of life and within that I see the women that have influenced me, that are inside me, that are part of me and I a part of them as I look at my hands I see my Mother as I look at my eyes I see my Grandmother, when I hear my voice I hear my Nan, and I feel blessed, and I look at my daughters and children and see those women and me in them also and I smile for the life I have had and the life yet to come, for me and for them…

The lead up to christmas (a break from social media) 

I used to love the lead up to christmas, the shops filled with festive promise, the colder weather, The adverts, the boots gift catalogue, excitement, the lead up, the magic but as I have said in other blogposts, since having children  I also find it a time of great financial stress and strain and overwhelment, it is a time where I feel the need to take a break from social media, feel overflowing with things to remember, things I need to get, lists, cards, gifts events snd occasions, my legs feel like they are carrying heavy weights on them and tasks seem harder than usual. It is a time where I need to sit back reflect and relax and prioritise what christmas really means and not be taken over by expectation, to me christmas is a time to relax and to enjoy the company of my family to appreciate them and enjoy the days spent together, it is a celebration of jesus birth and the importance of church, the singing of carols, the sharing in nice food. Togetherness, love and thanks, homemade gifts and twinkly lights and trees and making happy memories. It should not be a time of worry stress and distress, and hardship. 

Simplify your life 

Something Im really passionate about and have written about before is the art of decluttering, of organising and simplifying your life as once you do it cuts down stress, it declutters your mind speeds up decision making and keeps your living space tidier, it is an ongoing job however if you have children or other people in your house that dont help you to keep the home organised and clutter free, but if you are passionate enough about it it can really make a difference I reccomend reading the Marie Kondo book, which goes through each room and suggests ways inwhich to tackle them it talks about precious things and how to let them go if they have no use to you, I found it so enlightening and helpful, I love it when I only have one handbag on the go that I really really love , one coat that I wear everyday, One scarf,enough clothes that I adore and wear all the time but not too much to choose from as I do not like being overwhelmed everyday like a kid in a sweet shop, I like capsule wardrobes that all mix and match.I only have shoes that I will wear, mugs that I use very few ornaments that I dont need to dust. This lifestyle isnt for everyone and some people may think me odd, for I have very little attachment to material things, unless I use it find it beautiful or significant. I do have little obsessions for a while I collected lots of Emma Bridgewater mugs until I realised I had far too many to use, then I had a fondness for cushions, then Cath kidston dresses then green things and now gold things but I do try to be rather ruthless and sensible with what I purchase. To know when ive gone too far had enough and no longer want nor need. I try to encourage my children to do the same and am a big donator and customer of my local charity shops when Im having a declutter. Im not done yet I still have that drawer full of randomn rubbish, and far too many knives and forks but Im getting there. 

Things can change in an instant

Its funny isnt in life how quickly things change people you were once close to become like strangers so suddenly, people you thought cared or that you thought you knew well you realise You didnt know really at all, and they didnt know you, and people who were there one day are gone the next.

 Things that once mattered SO much are no longer significant and things you thought you needed you never really needed that much at all, For one day you may wake up and no longer be able to do the things you once could, or make the decisions you once made, you may no longer get up and walk away or pick up the ornaments from the shelf to dust, you are still alive but a different version of yourself no longer independent, still and silent, just waiting, waiting to be moved ….. waiting from the sunrise to the sunset you are waiting, and the things that mattered are just things, collections, piles of accumulating stuff, drawers of random to do lists, spare keys youve forgotten what for, old batteries, elastic bands and till receipts records of the past of the life you once lived that you will never look at again, the book still turned at the corner of a page from a story long ago, the ticket stub from a journey you once took, the odd glove who never made its way back to its matching other half, all the time that you wasted, all the efforts you made with people who didnt care, you look down at your tired hands that once did so many things and you wonder what was it all about what was it all for, is this it????

All Hallows eve eve

It is the night before Halloween and all through the house the candles and pumpkins are dancing in the dark evening light, treats are awaiting in bowls by the door for children excited for sweets galore, the witches are waiting dressed up for a fright their broomsticks fired up for a moonlit flight, and chattering ghosts hide in the hall to scare passing visitors who dare to call….. ………

AUTUMN DAYS

Remember that song from school when we all used to sing hymns everyday in assembly? I loved the song “Autumn days” it summed up my favourite season and I still sing it to myself now, whilst walking through rustling red leaves, fallen conkers. Comfy jumper and cardigan days, where the colours all around  beautiful, reds and oranges and the summer has ended and the best time of year for me has begun, a sense of newness, new school terms, new shoes, new projects, homecomforts, hot chocolate or coffee, soup, pumpkins, harvests and thanksgivings,a sense of being grateful for what we have,an appreciation for the changes in nature, the smell of rain and bonfires and the twinkling of candles in windows, in Autumn I feel so comfortable in my home the dark nights pulling in, snuggling under blankets, being lost in books and period dramas, and I remember to be thankful xx

Why I do not mind whether my children get a 100% attendance certificate.

Even many moons ago when I was at school there was such a thing as a 100% Attendance certificate, at Senior School level….I never got one, nor did I expect to, I may have got English prizes and Art prizes and progress in swimming, and Tutor group prize and merit certificates and I was a Prefect. I behaved inpecably, completed homework on time, was never late and had a great attitude at School but I was a sickly child picking up every bug and germ going, suffered from weekly migraines, if something was going round I would get it, I have been known to throw up in class on many an occasion and once fainted on the Teacher. Needless to say my otherwise outstanding school report would always have a less than 90% attendance record. My parents never minded they knew me and they knew when I was ill,and ultimately it was their choice to keep me off school whenever necessary. They expected many a phone call from school to pick me up, but that was just me and my school just showed me and my family empathy and care and warmth and understanding.

Now as a grown up mother of three I also can judge my children I can see it in their eyes, I trust my instincts, I would not drag my children into school if they are poorly, or recovering from a sickness bug, and I would not take my children out of school for holidays either and that is my choice not my childrens, in a world where education is governed by facts and figures and percentages, schools are doing everything they can to improve sickness and absence levels, in order to achieve Outstanding Ofsted results but in primary school level where children  are growing and their immune systems are still developing, and it is up to the parent whether they keep a child off or not, not the child .Schools and Authorities are going about it the wrong way I believe , to me the most important thing is my child’s health, happiness and wellbeing a child should never be made to feel guilty for being ill nor should lucky healthier children be given prizes and certificates for being blessed with such good health singling them out over others.

Praise and reward for good work, good attitudes and kindness and effort and aptitude yes always but please do not make a parent feel like they are doing wrong for making that decision to care for a poorly child  often disrupting work and childcare in the process even causing financial difficulties, most parents would prefer their child to be at school than at home, and each child and family have different circumstances, some children have underlying health reasons as to why they are ill or emotional problems, things that make it more difficult to get to school than others  or they are just  unlucky getting the usual bugs at the start of the school year, these should all be treated as individual cases. Show warmth and kindness all  us parents want is happy  children in schools and authorities that care and that our children are excited and proud to be a part of, Schools and Teachers and authorities that care because they have missed your child not because the percentages of attendance will look bad on paper.

My children may not come home this term  with a 100% Attendance certificate to stick on the fridge but I know they have 100% Brilliant Attitudes 100% kindness 100% Individuality 100% Fantastic effortmaking and are 100 % Happy and that is good enough for me.