I am doing my best and it is enough

So this time last week I was really looking forward to the summer holidays and spending some quality time with my girls. We had planned some days out and joint adventures with friends and their little ones. I would be relaxed as we wouldn’t be rushing around trying to get to school on time. All would be calm and everyone would be happy....... 

I completely forgot to take into consideration my feelings and emotions over the 2nd anniversary of Ben’s death on the 3rd August. Obviously I am fully aware of the date, it is firmly imprinted in my mind as the day everything including my forever, my hopes and dreams, my future changed. The day my best friend and soul mate fulfilled his love of me forever.

I should have realised that as I got closer to the day I would become anxious, emotional and slightly irrational. This coupled with a 3 and a 6 year old on school holidays and work, really what was I thinking. The lack of routine, although a temporary relief for me is not what my girls need and appears to make them wake up even earlier and as a result are quite moody. This then shows itself in their behaviour towards each other and me....they scream at each other and I haven’t worked out how you win but it is loud and aggressive, they occasionally hit, pull hair and slap each other too. I have tried letting them resolve it amongst themselves but it just gets louder and more aggressive so now I step in and use my authority to calm the situation. Currently my authority is being ignored so I end up shouting at them, shouting loudly also helps when one of your children is deaf from spending too much time under water in the paddling pool, even if my shouting is heard it is often ignored and the bickering continues. This yesterday resulted in me sitting down next to my screaming children and sobbing. It works much better than anything else I’ve tired, within minutes both of them were sat next to me with their arms around me saying sorry and asking if I was okay. I’m going to save this for emergencies! 

When they do get on they are often doing something they shouldn’t be doing. The patio looks like a paint explosion happened, the rather large paint bottles leaked everywhere while the girls were holding them, of course not shaking them everywhere to see what patterns they made. The paint also covered them, their clothes, hair, four fence panels and one side of the house. It was a very large paint explosion. Of course the washable paint is not washable and outside is still covered in paint. Luckily it came off the girls with some scrubbing. While the girls were trashing the outside I was doing an online food shop so we could eat and obviously I bought the wrong things! The paint episode did end up with me shouting and ranting at them about respect and how their behaviour wasn’t acceptable all the while wondering and asking myself would they be doing things like this if Ben was still alive.

The answer is obviously yes, maybe not as frequently as it seems to be but of course it feels so very frequent because I am the only one dealing with the bickering, the arguments, the disagreements, the carnage and the mess, no one else is there to help me out. I hate the responsibility of parenting my girls on my own and I question how my actions affect and influence the character of them. I find this responsibility especially difficult when I am emotional myself and my mindset is not where I would like it to be. But I have also come to realise this afternoon that I need to give myself a break especially with Ben’s anniversary looming. The girls are having an amazing summer so far, they are happy and even have food to eat even if its not the right food. My mantra for the rest of the holidays and forever is going to be I am doing my best and it is enough. 

karen whybrow