A hiccup

Hello,

Again, been a while. Always the way, and there was me thinking that life would become less busy once Jake started school.

I’d always planned to ensure that once Jake started school in September, I would really push my business and start getting more work. I thought this would take a little while, and Mike and I agreed that if it wasn’t going well, I would put it to one side and get a proper part-time job. Fast forward to the end of September and I have work coming out of my ears, which is great! This isn’t the hiccup, the hiccup is Jake.

I have to admit, that I was almost sickeningly smug of the fact that Jake had started Primary school and didn’t show any signs that he didn’t want to go in, wasn’t having nightmares or crying at the gates. There was me thinking ‘He’s been going to nursery and school since he was eight months old, he’ll be fine.’ Of course I didn’t act smug in front of others, but mentally I was thinking thank goodness I don’t have to worry.

So of course karma caught up. Forget total breakdowns at the gates, waking up having nightmares, or demanding to stay at home rather than go to school. Instead he decided that what he ought to do is punch someone in the face and throw a water bottle across the playground, smashing it to bits. Thus total panic ensued. You know Jake, wouldn’t hurt a fly and knows what it’s like to be picked on. He was also known for doing the right thing, so if he was hurt, he would go to the teacher rather than take matters into his own hands. I was horrified and so upset. Mike on the other hand, whilst he was concerned, also felt that ‘boys will be boys’ and ‘he’s not going out of his way to attack people’. But of course, you are going to worry. On top of this, I am my mother’s daughter, which means I have inherited the ‘Hayward Guilt’ gene, so essentially I am always guilty. I started thinking, okay, what are we doing wrong that he suddenly feels like he has to hit out? Do we need to stop reading Horrid Henry books, do we need to change what he is being allowed to watch on TV, has it come from him seeing us argue, is it because he’s an only child, etc. Think of a reason and I will have covered it by blaming myself. It’s actually frightening. This idea that something is happening to our son that isn’t in our control, something is affecting him so much that he feels he needs to lash out. How can you help? On top of that, he is only four, so his understanding of what he is doing and what you are telling him are quite limited. Of course he isn’t going round randomly attacking other children, there appears to be a group of boys all just being slightly boisterous with each other. But it is slightly disconcerting. What’s more, if I can barely cope with this, what am I going to do when he becomes a teenager?!

Anyway, there you are, that’s the current hiccup.

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Life planning

Hello,

I was having a thought the other day; people have a slight obsession with making plans for their lives based on a specific age.

For example; I have recently heard the words ‘having a baby/getting married should be done at the age of 27’ Why 27? A lot has to happen at 27. People seem to think that by this age, not only do they need to have a family or be married, but that their careers should be perfect too? I mean don’t get me wrong, fantastic if you are 27 and have hit these massive events. But why do certain life experiences have to happen at a certain time?

You know me, if I could, I’d have had another baby or two right after Jake. Not because I’m desperate to have a million of them, but because I love the idea of a big family and for Jake not to be an only child. But it does make sense to have a job, a home and a stable relationship. I started mentioning the idea of adding to our family and was met with the following ‘just because you decided to have Jake really young doesn’t mean I should have to as well.’ This tends to annoy me for three reasons 1. Because I do not think that I was that young to have had Jake 2. I chose to have him because the alternative for me was personally unthinkable, and 3. At what age is the ‘right’ time to have children? I didn’t realise there was one.

I do believe that things happen for a reason. I use Jake as my example because it proves my point. Had I not had him, I do not think for one second I would be where I am today. And also, these events that happen don’t have to be massive to have some kind of an impact on you right? What ever they are, you will know that they have changed your life in some way.

And a final point… And not to be morbid but what if you don’t make it to 27? Or whom ever you have made plans with doesn’t? Throws a slight spanner in the works. So makes more sense to just enjoy everything and if things happen… well you’ll just have to adapt won’t you?

Anyway, enjoy the rest of your day.

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It’s over, for good.

Hello,

I was walking home from work last night and I tweeted my friend Gigi because I was suddenly hit with an over whelming need to speak to her and let her know that I miss her an awfully huge amount. I then began to think about all the people I had been to uni with, what I might have been doing this week had I been with them, and it hurt. It was actually painful to think about how though the friendships will last for ever, the time has come to go out into the world and I will no longer come home to a house full of my friends eating yummy food, or planning to go out in funky outfits, walk up Bitch Hill to lectures, or attempt to swallow Mike’s Bites breakfast when dying of a hang over, or going shopping and looking at things we couldn’t afford but persuading each other to get them anyway (I believe the pressure was mainly coming from me and maybe Gigi :p) I miss them a lot. What struck me was that, after doing a post for Jake, I never did one for them, and they deserve one because without them, I wouldn’t have done it, and this way I can close the book on uni and start on to the future. It may also stop you being bored, who knows.

So, in no particular order…

Thank you to Gigi, Boz, Abbie, Cassie, Abbey, Holly, Jamie, Ginge Jay, Lewis, Paul, Napier, Daryl, Ned, Allan, and yes there are others who have been amazing, but these guys were there from the moment Jon walked away, they have been there when I have cried about the past, when I have been unable to let go and kept talking about Jon (I think I occasionally still do that after a gin or…. 50) they have been there for me during the pregnancy, right at the start and brought me amazing pickled gherkins from Marks and Spencer. They have sent me cards and gifts, remembered me when I wasn’t there for a year, and still kept me involved. They have taken me in and fed me and Jake, they have looked after him numerous of times without ever taking a penny from me. They have kept me sane when I have needed a break from the pressures of uni and parenting. They have made me laugh till my sides split, and I have had tears sliding down my face. Above all else, they have helped me raise a beautiful, happy, healthy child who remembers all of them, who laughs and asks to go home to those people, to the damp little house, filled with love, laughter and of course, the amazing and incredible food.

They have also laughed at my jokes, which means that they are indispensable, they are our family.

Thank you guys, there aren’t really enough words that I could write, but thank you so much for making my university experience the best experience of my life, thank you for always being there to help me through it, and above all else, thank you for helping me raise such an amazing child.

Goodbye Bangor, the past four years have been incredible, and if I could, I would do them all over again.

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An era

Hello,
Today I spent the day with people I went to Bangor with, as well as Mike and Jake. There aren’t many words that I can use to describe just how wonderful the time I spent in Bangor was. I know that earlier in the year I might have had a moan, but it was never about the people. I made a family in Bangor, not just a group of friends. I haven’t ever had friends like these, and I can guarantee you I was lucky, extremely lucky. So thank you Bangor for everything and everyone, I wouldn’t be the person I am now if it wasn’t for coming to this university.
Hope you’re having a good evening.
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To Jake

This is a post for Jake, one that he can come and find one day to let him know just how much today meant to me, and what it means for us.

Dear Jake,

Today mummy hired a gown along with a lot of other people. We all had to wear silly hats which made our hair look awful, and have long capes which made us all look like odd super heroes too.

Today, mummy collected her degree. This degree is important and symbolic for a number of reasons. It’s important because it means that mummy is able to work and get a job which brings home lots of money for us. It is important because it shows the world that mummy worked very hard to be able to give you all the things you receive. It’s symbolic because it proves that I have made the right decisions since you came along, and all for the better, and that a lot of other people were wrong.

Thank you Jake, for all the strength you gave me through the final two years of my degree. Thank you for being patient, for doing your best to understand what I needed, and for putting up with mummy when she was extremely over tired and bad-tempered. Thank you for all your cuddles and kisses, for making me laugh, for teaching me to be a little more relaxed, and for looking at everything in a different manner. Thank you Jake for being mine, for being my escape route when things got tough, and for reminding me that if things don’t go to plan it doesn’t mean it’s the end of the world.

Above all else, thank you for making it completely worth it. I know I may have complained or moaned, but believe me I never meant it. Without you it would have been futile and pointless, and I may never have gotten to the end. To have you in the crowd today as I walked the steps was incredible, I am so glad I was able to have you share it with me, and I hope I made you proud.

Thank you for being the best thing I ever made at university.

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P.S Congratulations to anyone that has graduated today from any kind of school/college/university, I hope you had someone with you to share it and make you proud.

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