2017 can go away now. It hasn’t been the best year, it hasn’t been the worst year either.. but it hasn’t been brilliant.
We seem to have stumbled from one incident to the next, resulting in a child who cries her eyes out some mornings because she’s so tired, too much going through her head and her being unable to sleep like she used to.
This isn’t like H at all. But then we’ve had a lot to deal with, which she’s had to deal with to some extent too because we can’t just leave her somewhere or with someone and not tell her anything.
Shaun’s nanna died and we flew to Australia to attend the funeral.
My godfather died and Shaun and I attended the funeral in Swansea while H had a playdate. We made it back in time, thank goodness. Thank goodness for friends too.
A blogging friend died which makes me sad to think she’s gone, though we couldn’t get to the funeral. But I think about her and wish I had made more of an effort to chat to her – I wish I could make more of an effort to chat to everyone. There aren’t enough hours.
What really should have happened next was us taking a holiday which involved lounging around a pool relaxing. We didn’t, we went to Cornwall which was great but I never did relax or wind down like I should have.
Then all of a sudden it was October and we were back up north, having a few days in a cabin in Northumberland with a limited phone signal and lots of cosiness. It felt like I was starting to relax, even if I did still wake up at 7.30 every morning.
We got home, and then the following day it happened. Back at work, school, life. I got the call – my mum had slipped over and had almost certainly broken her hip. That was later confirmed when I spoke to the hospital. I got bits of messages and was in bits with worry. I was the parent in tears to H’s class teacher, not knowing if she’d be taken out of school there and then to visit, or whether we should wait a few days and repeat to the headmaster, explaining why H might not be at school tomorrow but I knew nothing. As it was we waited until the Thursday and made it back to York in time for the last hour of visiting. She was in hospital for two weeks and is doing really well at home.
We stayed with my cousin which was excellent. H got on well with her kids and they are all SOOOO OLD now which still takes time to get used to. We were able to leave H there and visit the hospital, picking up things for mum. My cousin and her husband were amazing, they really were. But then one of the kids was sick, and H felt sick. Then the kid was sick again and we knew we couldn’t go back to the hospital, we had to get H home.
Which we did. She was sobbing hysterically most of the way home. That seems to be default mode at the moment, but amazingly she wasn’t sick. I put it down to tiredness and a lack of routine with everything else going crazy around us. Things were fine and she went back to school, Shaun dropping her off at the childminder.
Thank goodness he was working from home that day as the hysterical crying started again. It was all hitting her, the raw emotions of having someone you love in pain and being unable to do anything. Visiting them in hospital just the once and then having any other visits taken away from you because you can’t risk spreading any illness there – and it meant we were also at risk of spreading it too. That her nanna wasn’t the same person because she’d had a big operation.
School were amazing. We got the right people there as support, but H had already got there herself – her and her best friend decided to make my mum a card and get everyone to sign it in her class (and the headmaster…). So she dealt with her emotions by turning it into a positive thing and I was proud (and a bit embarrassed) that she had.
Because actually, 8 year olds are at that funny crossroads where things can get to you really quickly and easily but you can also deal with them quickly and easily too. Like when a boy at school tells her he doesn’t like her hair, and she wails and cries about it at home because he said that. Or when one of her friends is mean to her and makes her cry once she gets home. But she forgets all the good things her friends do. But then that doesn’t change when you’re an adult so there’s no point me lying to her.
And how I have to tell her that yes, it’s all rubbish but it’s all part of life. That bad things have to happen to help shape the person you are, and help you learn how to deal with it. And that actually, it’s all going to be okay (I hope).
But you still see the chaos that’s going on, you just protect her from that. But you wish it would stop. Just for a bit. A teeny bit. Just to sleep properly, to think straight and for it all to go away. To press a restart on this year. Because it’s all draining.
Three weeks on Friday I finish work for the year. I’m going to hibernate. I’d love to hibernate with Shaun and H too, just snuggle under a duvet and relax until we have to move from there. It’s not too unreasonable to ask is it?