Sending My Baby to Kindergarten and Finding Myself a New Normal

Here it is again, the start to a new school year.  But this year is different….very different.  This year my baby starts kindergarten.

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As I looked around, this summer, it was obvious that I am no longer a stroller mom.  You know the stroller moms. The ones who:

  • Takes 10 minutes to unstrap the kids and get out of the car
  • Has her hair unbrushed and spit up on her clothes
  • Tired (I mean, really tired)
  • Most days doesn’t leave the house due to nap schedules and too much trouble to leave
  • Carrying 100 things at a time

I could go on….

Although I’m still many of those things, I’m no longer in baby phase.  I still deal with tantrums with a louder much bigger child.  I still wear yoga pants when I’m not going to yoga.  I’m still tired and flustered but the differences are huge.

When I was a stroller mom, I remember someone telling me baby phase was ok because “Big kid, big problems.”  I remember looking at her and nodding while thinking, “Talk to me when I’ve slept more than 4 hours straight.”

And it’s true.  Baby moms can’t fully see the beauty in these chubby tiny babies because they suck the life out of you.  Their problems are eat, sleep, play, poop, repeat.  My baby now faces bullies, learning at a pace that is pushed towards testing, increased independence, relationships that I don’t control and situations I can not protect him from.
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As my son takes steps towards his kindergarten doors I regain some of myself.  I regain time in my day, energy that has been taken and quiet I have not had in 8 years.  All of these things I wished for as a stay at home mom desperate in the winter months feeling trapped and lonely are now coming to me.   And now I want my babies back.

For years, all I wanted to do was go to the store alone.  I was once tapped on the shoulder by a nice old woman who calmly said, “Miss, your daughter is standing in the cart.”  As I turned my head back from the cereal aisle she took a leap from her seat and I caught her.  I wanted the calm and now the calm just feels boring.  I talk to myself and look crazy (They were never really listened but at least I had someone with me.)  I need my shopping buddies!

I’m now the mom smiling at babies and telling stories about mine while the stroller mom is thinking, “Talk to me when I’m sleeping more.”

When your baby goes to kindergarten it’s an end of an era.  It’s an era that some may happily leave behind with the diapers and child care tuition.   But with new eras come new problems, big kid problems.

It will change us both.  As a stay at home mom, I gave up my life.  I gave up my job, my only friends were moms at the library and I sacrificed a lot while my husband traveled, I nursed and battled chronic migraine without medication.  I look back at those years as really hard.  Like, tears rolling down my face as I’m writing this HARD.  Those were the days I didn’t recognize myself because I wasn’t just myself, I was them.  Every second of my day revolved around these tiny humans that I had pushed out of my body and continued to give.  Gone are the days of playing and reading to them all day while no longer scraping play doh out of their mouths and  running around wild.

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The possibilities of this year are new to my kindergartener, new to me and similar in nature.

I hope he is safe.  We all need safety.

I hope he makes many strong friendships.  I hope to see more of mine.

I hope he is healthy with the new cesspool of germs that will live in his classroom.  I hope with the added time to myself that I can focus more on my health and advocating to improve the lives of many migraine and chronic illness fighters.

As my baby finds his way to the kindergarten doors, it’s hard not to think that I won’t be needed as much.  The reality is, after my oldest went, she needed me more in a big kid, big problem kind of way.  I may not need to teach him to speak, but I need to teach him to communicate.  I may not need to put him down for a nap but I need to help him understand how to relax and decompress after a long day.  I’m no longer his only friend and I need to help him navigate the ways of friendship, building lasting ones and avoiding toxic people.  Now is the time that my baby bird is leaving the nest and I know he will soar above the clouds as I count the seconds until he’s securely tucked back in.

Whether you were a stay at home mom or a full time working parent who has had their child in day care since they were a few months old, you still face the fear of “big kid, big problems.”  You may be looking forward to no more child care payments. You may be relieved to have some added time.  But we all face change in schedule and dynamics in the home.  Everyone’s lives change.

I’m no longer the stroller mom.  I’m the car pool mom, the sports mom, the where ever life takes them mom, the still tired mom.  Regardless of the title, I’m just so proud to be mom.

To a happy, healthy, safe and fun school year!

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Having Small Children and Migraine

Today is my baby’s 5th birthday!  He tells me, “It’s easy Mom, a whole hand!” and throws his little fingers out.  This Superman is my heart.

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Now that my baby is a whole hand and thinking about Kindergarten, how can I not reflect on how far we’ve come?  I have a lot of people ask me questions about being a mom of young ones, pregnancy, being a stay at home mom, and how I have managed all of those things while battling migraines, and all the craziness that comes with it.  I’ve had people tell me they have considered not having children because of it.  These events are hard enough but adding health issues into them makes these life events a whole lot more twisted.

It brings up so many emotions on how hard it was being pregnant, having a baby, and living a migraine life.  As with everything, both pregnancies were different, both births and babies were different and migraine life was extremely different.

I can say I never considered not being a mom.  I was meant to be a mom.  In my mind, body and soul, I was meant to be someone’s mom (cue the tears).  My heart beats for my children.  Being a mom is the best thing that has ever happened to me and the best thing that ever will.  I feel these seconds, days, months fly by.  At the same time each second seems hard, crazy, and isn’t it nap time yet?  I look back at how wonderful it was and then really think back at how hard it was.  Like, REALLY hard, in SO many ways.  Yet so very magical, precious and fleeting.

People told me that having little one’s was the hardest time with Migraine.  Isn’t having little one’s the hardest part of most people’s lives?  At the same time, there’s no way of knowing, but I have a feeling that when I look back on my life, I will see these as the days of my life.  (If you are a Days of Our Lives watcher read the last line in the dramatic voice.)  Like sand through the hourglass……

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HAPPY BIRTHDAY to my birthday boy.  To know him is to love him.  Truly!  His smile is contagious, his stories make me laugh, he tells me “I love you” all day long and gives the best hugs.

A whole hand now!  How does time go so fast?

Is Having Children a Benefit or Drawback to Teaching?

 

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Both being a mom and being a teacher I’m changing lives.  I may not make a lot of money but I make a difference!

 

After many years of staying home with my children, I just started my second year  back to teaching.  While returning to teaching, the question, “Is having children a benefit or drawback to teaching?” has crossed my mind.   As always, everyone is different along with life style, priorities and circumstances which dictate this answer.

I spent many years in college receiving a formal education on best practices to teach both early childhood and special needs.  Then, I had several years of teaching before I had my own children.  I remember at a conference, a parent jokingly said, “You will understand when you have kids.”  I remember being slightly offended by this.  I spent 6-7 hours a day with their child and that’s more than most parents can say they see their children each day.  I also spent all my free time, planning, preparing and researching for their child.  My priority was my class.

Last year, my daughter had a kindergarten teacher who does not have children.  I immediately thought of that parent and was impressed by her teacher in many ways.  She was kind, patient and calm.  None of these things you need to have children to be.  In fact, none of those things you need an education for either.  Her personality and dedication impressed me the most.  My daughter thrived educationally and socially.  We both loved having her. She doesn’t have children but I knew she was going the extra mile in her free time and I appreciated her because of that.

This year she has a teacher with 5 children. My first thoughts were, “She obviously loves children but who gets the short end of the stick?  My child or her children?”  It has to happen at some point, right? We now love her for the teacher she is and all that she does.  It doesn’t matter to me if her teacher has 0 or 50 kids at home.  I’m concerned about what she is doing with my 1 child while she is teaching her those 6 hours each day.  God bless her patience to teach all day and go home to many more children.  On the other hand, she gets lots of joy at work and lots of joy at home so she’s a lucky woman.  Children are such a blessing and the more the merrier!

As for me…….

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I am now a preschool teacher with a preschooler.  I teach part time and get a chance to be a full-time mom still.  My preschooler is not in my class but our classes run at the same time so I only work while my children are in school.  I can honestly say, everyone gets the best of me.  Here’s why:

I loved and taught preschool before I had children and some of the things I worried about as a teacher I don’t worry about as a mom.  I now alter my plans with that balance in mind.

I was a stay at home mom during the hardest years a mom faces.  There is no better training of children than having two small ones, a husband that travels and chronic migraine.  To say I know how to balance, delegate, plan ahead, and multitask is an understatement.  I’ve learned how to entertain my babies while being in excruciating pain.  I’ve sacrificed my body, mind and gave up my occupation that I love all for my babies and family.  I put myself on the backburner and was happy to do it, but it was really, really hard.  I turned into a super hero and did a job that not every mom can or wants to do.  Work/life balance did not exist.  My work was my life and there was no day off.  They were long days and fast years that I feel beyond grateful for.

Now that I’m back to teaching, my students and families are getting the best and healthiest version of me.  I feel like I can give 100% to my children, students and my health.  Working part time really motivates me.  I LOVE my job and arrive each day happy to be there.  On my days off, I am often migraine sick but no one would know (see letdown migraine).  Part time allows me to be sick and take time for self-care.  For those of us who have chronic disease, scheduling in sick time is the norm and necessary

You-can-do-hard-thingsOverall, I understand teaching both with and without children.  I understand the fundamentals through education, the students point of view through not having children (and only seeing my students as students) and the behind the scenes (aka school) of what parents and children go through at home (nap schedule, eating issues, sleep issues, lack of structure, bathroom concerns and more!).

After all these years, I feel that I’m the best teacher and mom because of these experiences.  With these experiences, I know that not all teachers and moms are dealt the same hand.  There is no answer that fits all.  Not every mom, teacher, home or classroom are the same. 

Thank you to those teachers teaching my babies

Thank you to those parents allowing me to teach their babies

May we all grow and learn endless lessons both inside and out of the classroom this year!

 

Lessons your children learn or miss on vacation

img_9212I just came home from vacation with 4 children under 9.  When we left for vacation I was reminded that school districts look poorly on unexcused absences.  My answer was, “My children learn endless lessons on vacation and I’m not apologizing for showing them the world.”

While on the cruise I noticed lessons learned and missed everywhere.  Being a stay at home mom and teacher makes me see the world through different eyes.  I see my children and nieces as students in the real world.  I don’t have them in a classroom but I take opportunities to teach them as often as possible.

Waiting in Lines

Traveling requires a lot of waiting.  I’m writing this from the airport with a canceled flight and 8 hours of airport sitting.  When we travel, we wait in line for security, baggage, departure, arrival, check in, check out, and events that we attend.  Everyone waits in line but how they wait is crucial. 

As a teacher of three year olds, a line is a completely foreign concept.  We work on it all year long but it’s up to adults to show them how.  Are you waiting in line complaining that it’s not moving?  Are you pushing people?  Are you cutting and stepping in and out of line?  Patience my dear…..patience.

Eating

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On a cruise, food is endless.  With this, are endless options.  We don’t encourage our children to order mac n cheese every night (although my son would love it and cause me less issues).  I will fully admit my son is an insanely tough eater.  He cries through most meals and only eats about three things by choice.  I have a picky eater who ruins most meals for me.  This does not mean he gets what he wants.  On vacation we aren’t shoving veggies down our kid’s throats and we eat lots of desserts. 

We mainly focus on trying new foods.  What better time to try new things than an all-inclusive meal package?  They tried escargot (gross!), lobster, crab legs, fruit soups and more.  If they don’t like it, ok.  If they do, it gets added it to their vast pallet.  We take “No thank you bites” which mean they try it and say no thank if they don’t want more.  Try new foods.

Along with this comes table manners.  Even my three year old orders for himself and has for years.  Look at the waitress, order politely and wait patiently.  We look at how a table is set, why there are so many forks and put napkins in our laps.  At home my children set the table and having a beautifully set table is something they recognize.

Different cultures, languages and social studies

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Our children have classmates who are bi lingual but only hear them speak English in school.  When we travel, we see adults and children speak in their first languages and it’s a great learning experience.

 My son played with a little girl in the pool and neither one of them knew they were speaking different languages.  I sat and laughed watching them play in the water while joy and giggles spoke for them.

We saw different bathing suits, hair coverings, dress styles, jewelry choices and more.  Talking about differences in cultures is different than seeing it.  Both on the boat and on the islands we saw every color of skin, eye and hair color. 

They saw homes that look a lot different than ours.  Telling a child to appreciate their home and showing them a shack where children their age live is a lesson that lasts.  More is not always more and location dictates dwellings.  We don’t have brightly colored houses like the Bahamas and they don’t have snow barriers like Cleveland.  Location, location, location.

It was diversity at it’s best.  We rode in elevators with a swirl of languages around us.  We tried to identify where they may have been from and where in the world it was.  It was fun to problem solve and see social studies come to life.

Maps.  Maps can help teach scale (additional math lessons below).  It can teach location, direction, elevation, landmarks and more.  Wherever we travel we get a map.

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Math surrounds us everywhere.  Money is always an easy lesson.  Change, dollars, prices etc. are all opportunities for lessons.

We found lessons in walking the stairs when the elevators were too crowded.  How many floors till we get to where we need to go?  Addition, subtraction, counting stairs and more.  Active math can be better than paper pencil math.

At dinner we had my niece making patterns with the utensils.  Fork, spoon, fork, spoon, fork…  Now try spoon, spoon, fork, spoon, spoon, fork, spoon….

We had a ton of events to go to.  What time is it?  What numbers are on the clock?  How much more time till we need to go?  What time do we need to get up and what numbers will be on the clock?

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Technology

HERE COMES THE JUDGEMENT…..

Get the ipad out of your kids hands!!!!!  I was sickened by how much other children were missing life lessons.  If the schools are referring to those kids and missing school, I agree.  How you vacation with your children should dictate if you can miss school or not.  If your child is handed an ipad for a week, keep them in school!!!!!!  You aren’t doing them any favors by “showing them the world” when they are missing the world around them.

I sat at dinner for an entire week next to a family who gave their son an ipad at dinner and I did not see them speak to him ONCE!  It actually distracted me from my own family by staring at this poor child holding a screen 1 foot from his face for an hour straight each night.  Literally……NOT ONE WORD WAS SPOKEN TO HIM!  A generation without being spoken to or speaking was screaming in my face.

Do people say to themselves, “Let’s have a baby and not talk to him.”  I know this is super judgey but it’s the truth.  It’s easier to give technology than to speak to your babies, I get it (but I don’t do it).   We talk to our children and they speak to us.  Language development is hugely lacking due to technology.  Children should not have difficulty in conversation, in fact, they should be difficult to stop from their inquisitive natures.

We ask open ended questions that provoke thought…What was your favorite part of the day?  What was your least favorite part and how did it make you feel?  Who made you laugh today?  How did you feel when (a situation) happened?

Our children colored, did actual homework, read menus, played with characters and were aware of their surroundings.  Are my children perfect?  No child is.  Most nights we had multiple trips to the bathroom and walks around the halls while waiting for food. 

Like I said, my son is a picky eater and my husband and I battled him every night to cut his attitude and sit with us whether he was eating or not.  We left most dinners exhausted and frustrated but we didn’t take the easy way out.  He’ll thank us some day and onlookers thanked us as they left for the polite lovely children that we are raising.  I’m not kidding, we get complimented most places we go for their manners.

Technology is easy being a parent HARD.  If you got into being a parent thinking it would be easy, check the definition again….it’s HARD and requires real work.  Technology is not work.

As we waited in those lesson teaching lines, I mentioned above, I saw dozens of children with ipads again.  These aren’t educational games that my kids play at home on rainy days, they are manic, ADD producing, mind frying, delusion creating games (cue the negative feedback).  There is a time and a place for shows, movies and games and it is NOT ALL THE TIME!

Like I said, this is  judgey and I’m not perfect.  I typically try to be politically correct in my posts because I tend to lean towards: Everyone is different.  But in this case, if you want to battle me in saying that ipads are good to be in children’s hands at all moments I’ll take that challenge.

A generation that can’t self-entertain, don’t speak and are missing life lessons around them is frightening.   Children playing games sitting in diapers instead of playing in the pool is wrong!  Not talking to your son at dinner is not OK.  Waiting in a line and frantically searching through a purse to quickly soothe a toddler who needs to be swiping his finger while rewiring his small brain and is losing potential with each passing minute is tragic.  Kids who are only comfortable “talking” through their fingers saying things that they wouldn’t have the nerve to say out loud is their “reality”.

I can go on and on and on and on about this.  As a teacher, as a mother, as a human being watching my babies surrounded by robots is nothing short of terrifying!

 Conclusion

Circling back to the comment of schools not liking personal vacations, I ask you this…..Are your children learning and living lessons or missing them as a world passes them by?  Enjoy life and be present.  Being a parent is hard and a lot of my vacation consisted of cranky kids and not being easy.  We read books at bedtime, we talked, we grew together and we all had moments of tears and difficulty.

Life is hard and vacation should not consist of ipads and missing life.  Life is real, it’s fun, it’s different, it’s people, it’s tantrums, it’s conversations, it’s exhausting, it’s living school.  They can look and speak to adults, entertain themselves, use their imaginations and be kids the ways kids should be (the old fashioned way).

I’m not perfect, my kids aren’t perfect and I know no one is.  But together we enjoyed vacation and learned lessons that school or an ipad could not teach us………LIFE.

RANT and JUDGEMENT OVER…..

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The motherless mothers, mothered mothers and Mother’s Day

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As I prepared to write a Mother’s Day post about how much I love my mom and how much I love to be a mom, I read a very interesting article.  The article was about being a “motherless mother.”  I have never heard that phrase and it really got me thinking.  The phrase “motherless mother” can be a variety of moms.  It can be mothers who lost a mother, had an absent mother, a mentally ill mother, a narcissistic mother and more.  The baggage that a daughter has from being a motherless mother and becoming a mother must be huge.  How do you be the best you can be when you’ve had a bad example or not one at all?  The fears, the doubts and the lack of support must mold a mother into something new.

Although I know many motherless mothers, I can say that all of them have become wonderful mothers in their own right.  I know that many continue the cycle and that the cycle is circular for a reason.  But in my case, I have seen the motherless mothers in my life thrive.  I don’t see what happens behind closed doors, I don’t see how they feel inside and I don’t see all those moments that their mothers aren’t there.  What I do see is a mom that loves her son or daughter despite her past.  A mother that tries, sometimes fails and tries again.  Being a mom has no answers and not having someone to call for advice has got to be hard!  I have seen my motherless mother friends surround themselves with a different type of family.  Grandmas, sisters, friends, aunts, mother in laws, and neighbors all stand in for the motherly role.  Their children are surrounded with love and strong women despite and created by the absence.

On the flip side of this, I have been blessed with the most amazing, selfless, wonderful mother in the world! (Cue her tears as she reads this and mine while I write.)  I have had migraines since I was 5 and been sick basically forever.  My mom has never stopped helping me.  She has been to countless appointments, paid countless bills, read and searched out hundreds of possible treatments and above all sat with me while I suffered.  Now, as a mother, thinking of how it must have been to see me in the hospital, hysterical, sad, helpless, and in pain when she couldn’t take it away must have been torture.  I always felt guilty for how much I needed her but have learned that she really needed me just as much.  I now realize her sacrifice is even more than I ever imagined.  She has never judged me for my decisions and has guided me to make the best choices I can.  She has eased the pain of growing up and growing old.  Having the comfort that my mom is on my side has allowed me to go through life with confidence I would not have had otherwise. 

My house was always the place to go.  My mom was not only a mom to my sister and me, she was a mom to our friends and whoever we brought home.  They freely opened our refrigerator and helped themselves to the always stocked food.  They brought home homemade candy at Christmas and sat and talked with my mom in the kitchen laughing and getting advice for themselves.  She was at every game (and I played a lot of sports), she woke me up every morning (and I am not a morning person) and she volunteered for every event at school.  Her love stopped me from doing a lot of what my peers experimented with.  She was strict, knew where I was at all times and knew all my friends and their parents.  It would have been possible for me to rebel, like so many do, but with the way she showed me love, I never wanted to.  I have gone through life never wanting to disappoint my mom.  If I am a fraction of the mom that my mom is, I can die knowing they got the best.

Although I already have the best, I added another mother to my life.  Somehow I hit the lottery with moms in my life and marrying my husband meant getting another fabulous mom.  My mother in law is the mother to my husband that my mom is to me.  I give her credit for molding the man of my dreams.  He respects women, is affectionate and works hard all because of her example.  She now mothers us both.  Over the years she has seen and learned how much I deal with.  I am not an easy person to understand because of my illness and she has been willing to learn, help and rearrange her life to be our mother.  I am so lucky to have the best mom and add another that goes above and beyond for her children.  My children have grandmothers that spoil them and women that teach them lessons that I could not do alone.

And now for the reason I breathe the air I breathe………my babies.  All I ever wanted to be was a mom.  With a role model like mine, how could I not want to spread that love?  My husband and I decided even before we were married that I would stay home with them if it was possible.  I am educated and experienced in both early childhood education as well as special education.  If anyone was raising our babies, we wanted it to be me.  With that said, it is still so so so hard.  I dropped everything in my life to raise my babies and although it was difficult to find balance, it is a choice that none of us will regret.  I will never look back on my life and think “I wish I hadn’t spent so much time with them, I should have been somewhere else.”  I am exactly where I should be, with them.  I am hugely underpaid, underappreciated, overworked, and over triggered.  They literally make me sick from their meltdowns, lack of sleep, crazy diet, and abundance of energy (Where does it come from?  I’m so tired!)   

No matter how many migraines I have, the motivation from my two human beings is endless.  I look at their faces that came from my body and I fight harder.  The tiny chub hand of my son in mine is my payment.  The huge snuggles that my daughter only gives me is my medicine.  The belly laughs of them enjoying an event I have taken them to is my salary.  They wear me down while building me up to heights I didn’t know I could soar to.  I’m so proud over the littlest things and my heart pounds for their future endeavors.  Being a mom is the greatest responsibility I will ever have and I take it very seriously.  My kids don’t need to get me anything for Mother’s Day because I was given the biggest gift the day they were born. (But let’s be honest, I deserve LOTS of presents!!!!)

I may suffer daily but one thing I know is that I’m a good mom.  I have given my kids 110% since the day I found out I was pregnant.  I now see what being a mother is and it’s HARD!  I give and give and they take and take and I give some more.  I have doubt in myself, even with having the best role model.  I have days I fail, I have days I lay in bed with a migraine and feel helpless, I have days that I don’t feel like a good mom, and I have days where I raise my voice.  The guilt I feel for having chronic migraines is a heavy burden.  I am slowly seeing that even that will somehow benefit my kids.  I don’t speak a lot about what I deal with but when my children see me sick, they have compassion and the love I show them is reciprocated.  They will learn to be independent, care takers and value their health because of me.   They will see that their mom is in pain yet is such a fighter!  I hope that they will be proud of me.  When I’m down I remind myself that it’s a marathon.  My kids will never stop needing me and tomorrow is another day.  I need my mom as much today as I did growing up and I will do the same for my kids.

In conclusion…..Happy Mother’s Day!  To all you motherless mothers, mothered mothers, mothers being the best mothers they can be, mothers that suffer, mothers that are alone, mothers that have found motherly figures and more.  It’s not a pretty job, it’s not clean job, it’s not an easy job, it’s not a job everyone can stay home and do.  It’s hard for everyone!  But in the end…….it’s the best job!

Fear as a mother and migraine sufferer

As a migraine sufferer I have never been afraid of my disease.  I think if I got it later in life, I’d be terrified by the future with it.  But being that I don’t know life without it, I’m not scared of it itself.  I’ve been afraid while in the throes of an attack.  I’ve been afraid that the pain will never stop, that it could possibly get worse when I was already experiencing something I didn’t think I could handle and that I was experiencing brain damage that would be life altering.  I’ve even been afraid that I wouldn’t make it out alive…literally.  But as for daily living, I don’t live in fear.  I prepare myself with medication that I carry, avoid my triggers the best that I can, and pray.

All that changed when I had kids.  With my children came two different fears that I had never known before.  One being for myself and the most important being for them.

1. It’s not that I never valued myself before I had children but it just didn’t dawn on me my importance in the world.  When I was younger I felt invincible and thought that I would outgrow my migraines or a cure would be found.  As an adult I was only responsible for myself.  Once my babies came, my world got flipped upside down.  I was now responsible for these beautiful lives that I had created and no matter how sick I was, they would still need me.  All I want to be is Super Mom for my kids.  I don’t want them to see me bawled up on the couch screaming, or throwing up and crawling to my bed.  I don’t want them to see me cry, see me in pain or see me as anything but their protector.  As a stay at home mom it isn’t easy for me to have other people take care of my kids.  Giving over my role is difficult and something I don’t like to do.  I’m fortunate enough to know that they are always well taken care of and loved but as I lay in my room I am striving to get better for them.  They don’t deserve a sick mom and I don’t intend on being one.  I started taking care of myself and monitoring more closely once I had them.  Although they have many who love them, no one loves them like I do and they will never love anyone like they love me.  Everyone needs a mother and it’s my fear that I won’t be able to be there when they need me.

  1. My biggest fear in life is that I’ve given this monster to my angels.  With tears streaming down my face I can say that I lay in bed most nights fearing that it resides inside them waiting to attack.  Never leave me alone in a car because I will inevitably be bawling by the time I get to my destination.  While some women wonder what their sweet baby will look like while they are pregnant, I begged God not to give my babies migraines.  My grandmothers had them, my mother had them and I have been cursed with them.  I started getting them when I was 5 and my daughter turns 4 at the end of the month.  I’ve already talked to her pediatrician and my neurologist about my fears.  I have been doing research about anti inflammatory foods that help and major trigger foods to avoid other than my own.  I cook really clean and healthy for my entire family and read the labels on the foods that we buy carefully.  I am teaching them good habits and choices when it comes to health.   I am hoping that living defensively will help.  I can’t change the make-up of my children’s brains, but it is my hope to keep their brains from “firing” off these attacks the best that I can.  It’s a topic I plan on continuing the conversation about on this blog.  About what foods and drinks are best.  The physical activities that are helpful and everything that comes with overall well being.  I LOVE to eat and have never gone the “diet” route with my migraines.  I still eat junk food but it’s when the kids are in bed and my bad choices only effect me.  I’m not crazy about it, but I figure I make the majority of the meals for my family and do the grocery shopping so while they are with me, I’m giving them something to make their bodies feel good.  So I’m on a journey of healthful living to contain the beast the best I can for both my children and myself.  I’ve turned my fear into motivation…..but don’t get me wrong, I’m crying because I’m scared!

 

….to be continued and discussed later