Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Rough Ride.

Tonight was one of those nights. It was a rough, rough night.

I love being a single mother, I don't usually find it 'hard' or 'testing'. Quite the opposite actually, I cherish the Mother-daughter moments we share. I wouldn't want it any other way.
But sometimes I wonder if dealing with rough nights would be a little more simple or less stressful if someone was there to help. Not necessary physically helping, but someone to lean on for support and to get reassurance that you are doing the right thing.  Someone to turn to and ask for an opinion.
'Do you think she has a stomach ache?', 'Do you think we should try giving her some panadol?'
I find that the most difficult thing about doing it on my own.

Stella was so unsettled tonight, she hasn't been like it for months. I couldn't for the life of me pick what was upsetting her so much. Which is horrible as a Mother; to not have an instinct as to what the problem might be or what I could do to help her. In the end I put it down to either teething or the hot, muggy weather.

She was terribly tired so we started the wind-down, bedtime routine at 7pm. Sleep still hadn't come by 8pm. Sleep still hadn't come by 9pm. Sleep still hadn't come by 10pm. All the while she was getting more tired, more restless and more irritated. I tried every settling technique in the book; Bottle, bath, book, cuddles, rocking. None worked. At around 10:30pm I found I was losing my patience. I was becoming tired and irritated too, So I put her down to play with her toys. I guess I thought she'd get more tired and that when we tried to settle again, it would be easier. Not so.

At 11pm I was holding onto my calm mamma demeanor by a thread. I changed her nappy, gave her a bottle, made sure she wasn't too hot or cold and then put her in the cot, safe but un-happy.
Rather than waiting where I could hear her grizzle, I had a very hot shower and tried to regain some calm.
After a shower and long, deep breaths, I was ready and rumbling to start the settling again and just keep trying until she went to sleep. However, I didn't need to. She had put herself to sleep out of pure exhaustion.

It's times like this that make me second guess how much I really enjoy parenting. Especially single parenting. But that thought is only brief, so incredibly brief. Because when I looked at the sweet, peaceful sleeping face of my baby I was washed over with love. Unconditional love. I know that tomorrow morning will be filled with smiles and snuggles yet again.

As I sit here; at near 1am. It becomes clear to me what really is important. Tiredness is nothing, mess is nothing, because when the sun comes up I am doing the most incredible thing I have ever done and will ever do. The most rewarding, enjoyable, touching experience. Being Stellas' Mum.


  1. Oh Nat... I'm so proud of you; you are beyond your years. I hope I have your strength and thinking when I am a mother! x

  2. Thank you for sharing! Being a mum is definately the hardest (and best) job in the world. I imagine doing it alone would be a huge challenge. Your daughter is lucky to have such a strong mamma! :)

  3. I love reading your blog. You write so beautifully. You write about things that sometimes I think, but am too scared to say out loud. The frustrations and hard times.
    You are such a good Mummy and Stella is so lucky to have you.
    Keep writing. I love it. I love seeing all the little products you find too. It's really helpful and gives me ideas too. xoxo

  4. You do such an amazing job! I struggle on some occasions and I am in a relationship. Big brownie points to you!
    I was a single mum with Imogen when she was 2 and those were the hardest 2 months of my mothering life. I agree that its not 'hard' as such, but sometimes having that moral support around can make a lot of difference to the way you deal with things.
    Lots of love xx