As I sit, drinking coffee (I’m in survival mode today after being up through the night with a hot and sticky child), I can’t help but think about the last year that has disappeared.
I suddenly remember a quote I saw whilst waiting for an appointment at CAMHS (Child and Mental Health Services), it was etched in a child’s handwriting:
“You can’t have a rainbow without a little rain.”
When I think about that metaphor, I can’t help but think about the fair share of rain I’ve had in one year.
In fact, life was so flooded with negativity that I started to lose hope I’d see sunshine again.
Now, the rays are just about peeping from behind the clouds and I have faith that the future could be a little brighter.
If we go back a year in time we were right there, in the epicentre, at the eye of the storm.
I had a five year old who had lost her way to a catastrophic level.
She was attacking everyone around her – she was posing a high risk to not only others but to herself included. She told me she wanted to die and it was my fault for making her like this, with a brain she hated.
When she acted upon the suicidal threats I had to call for help.
I made a phone call to someone I trusted and whose advice I had faith in.
This person advised me my daughter needed medical intervention and I broke down on the phone.
It was the only way to get some help and to keep everyone safe. I had no guarantee that she would remain in my care.
I was so, so frightened. I didn’t want anyone to take away my baby.
My daughter wasn’t the only one drowning at this point.
At about that time we all went into crisis, my husband included. He needed help but was not able to ask for it, he certainly couldn’t find it from me – I was too busy keeping us all afloat.
Maybe I had been his emotional rock before then, but when I was down I was no longer his buoy.
I needed his support too, I was too busy fighing this arduous battle alone. He just didn’t know how to help me either.
With so much going on we were not strong enough to support each other and began turning on one another.
With so much destruction, I had lost my best friend through the storm.
I never wanted to be a lone warrior.
Gossip started by professionals and they blamed her demise on our marriage breakdown. Anyone who had half a brain knew it had been the other way round.
Over the space of a year I have had to start again and it’s not been easy. It wasn’t a path I had chosen, but one that has re-directed me on a different journey.
As someone else has told me, life is not looking how I expected it to look – it just looks differently.
Each day I’m grateful for so many small things – the kind of things we all take for granted. Like when I get to take my children to school, in their uniforms, I feel so proud.
To just be a normal mum.
To watch my children run around and smile together, that gives me warmth – it is my sunshine.
If we didn’t have the rain then how could we have appreciated the rainbows that have appeared?
This experience has fuelled my passion to spread awareness and in doing so my life is now richer by the people I have met along the way.
Even starting a new support group for parents – I would never have foreseen myself to have the confidence or experience to lead others.
I was disempowered for so long.
Last month I screamed the house down when I found out I had made the finals for best Newcomer at the #BAPS2018 – an award ceremony whilch celebrate writers of Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND).
Actually, I squealed so loud that my PDA’er panicked and thought somebody had died.
She obviously doesn’t get to see mummy that happy and excited very often!
I had nominations in six of the seven categories but I really didn’t expect to be shortlisted as a finalist!
One of the things I’m most excited about is getting to meet the other bloggers – the ones I have been following and sharing their experiences too.
Their words move me as much as I hope mine do to others.
And to learn from them so that I can keep spreading awareness and make a bigger platform to share a collective voice.
It’s got me through what has been a tumultuous year, but this blog has created amazing opportunites as a result.
I can only write about the rainbows because I had so much rain to make them happen.
Here’s to the next year for PDA Parenting – I look forward to sharing more of the rainbows with you!
☀️ + 🌧 = 🌈
If you have enjoyed reading the blog and would be kind enough to support further, then please click here to cast your vote for PDA Parenting as Best Newcomer at the #BAPS2018.
Please do check out the other categories too as there are some interesting blogs to read through.
Voting closes 16th March – Wish us luck!