Thursday 31 December 2015

My New Years letter to you......Yes you sat reading this

To my lovely friends and family,

So here we are folks. The last day of 2015. It's a time when we are meant to reflect on the last 12 months of our lives and look forward to whatever the future has in store for us.

I have to say that I am honestly pretty relieved to see the back of this last year. There have been many moments of absolute despair and I have  felt so alone and confused at times. But on the flip side to this I then I found you lovely lot out there in the world of social media.

I had plucked up the courage to share my story and I realised I wasn’t alone. I wasn’t alone in feeling overwhelmed and isolated. I discovered that up and down the country there were so many mums just like me who muddled through each day, and collapsed into bed relieved to have simply got through the day in one piece.

And for that reason alone I can't tell you how happy I am that I started writing. I have made some wonderful new friends and I have been truly humbled each time one of you lets me into your lives and shares your own story with me.

So 2015 has been a year of ups and downs alright- I had a depressive episode and shared it warts and all with you! My little man started his new school and I shared our first day anxiety with you all, and you were there with us every step of the way. Then there was our crazy family holiday in which I lost the plot and had my own mummy meltdown, but again you were there for me to keep me going.

There have been many highlights this last year too- being published in magazines and newspapers, Yahoo picking up my work and then my blog going viral. And starting to write a book to name but a few. But over and above all of that- what’s been the highlight for me is when someone who reads my stuff takes the time to contact me to say what I have written has helped them, or made them cry. Or my words have them realise why they have felt so out of sync with the world their whole life... well that just floors me. 
I can't get my head around that and it honestly makes everything I do, all the hours I spend, 100% worthwhile.

Your support and friendship means more to me than you will ever know. And that is why I will continue to share our story in 2016.

I have discovered these last few months what a politically hot world the Autism community is. And I have found myself staying away from the politics of it all as my feeling is that it reflects our attention away from what’s really important- us,our kids, our families and a need for true openness and acceptance. I can’t be afraid of what I write because people can see straight through the bull. And it's just not my style. 
So if you want politics I’m just not the writer for you.

I will continue to write about my love for my son, our journey with Autism and how I get through the day. Sometimes its pretty and sometimes it's not. I can't and won't shy away from that as I need to be honest. Life is tough sometimes and mums should never feel ashamed for saying that. It doesn’t mean we love our kids any less or want to change them.

Parenthood is one of the hardest things we ever face, period. 

Its not wrong to say we need help on occasions.It's not wrong to share our joy, our ups and downs and our moments of despair because we are human.

I have always written straight from my heart and always with my sons privacy at the forefront of my mind. I try not to offend anyone and so far I seem to have avoided any controversy. But if I worried too much about what I write I honestly think it it would change the way I share my story, and I don’t want that, as I have finally found my voice.

And I hope that by sharing my own story it helps people see the world from a different perspective. And helps other families like mine muddle through the system knowing that they are not alone in what can be a very hostile and confusing world for both us and our kids.

So really I just wanted to take this opportunity to thank each and everyone of you.

Thank you for being there, and reading my ramblings. Thank you reaching out to me and for sharing your stories. Thank you for following my page and sharing my stuff. I wish I could thank you all personally but this will have to do for now.

You will never know how grateful I am to you all my lovely friends and family.

So here’s to a happy healthy and slightly bonkers 2016 as I continue to share my story warts and all and I hope you will continue to stick around for the ride....

Mrs M xx

Monday 21 December 2015

4 days to go ....

      Adult time....
  • It's near enough impossible to get adult company at the best of times when you have kids, and at this time of year the pressure is really on us to be sociable. But often we’re just too shattered to join in.
  • So don’t feel guilty about this, you have a hectic demanding home life, and even more so at this time of year keeping your child calm and happy.
  • So if you can get a sitter and you want to go out.. then great, but if you just can't face it don’t be pressured by anyone. You and your family are the most important thing.
  • If you wanna stay tucked up indoors in your PJ'S watching TV then remember that’s fine-there's some fab Christmas movies on this year anyway.
  • People can always come to you, and this can make life easier sometimes, but again if you're too exhausted don’t worry people who know you and love you will understand you situation.
  • And don’t stress about how clean your house is, that not your priority…people who enter your home need to accept that it's a loving home, and cleaning isn't top priority -the cleaning can wait until the kids are back at school!

 support networks...

Samaritans at Christmas

  • Do what works for your family, no one else's.
  • Take it at your child's pace and dont feel pressure from others.
  • Spread opening up the presents throughout the day if that helps.
  • Let your kids watch what they want on the TV, that’s what pause and record was invented for husband ;-)
  • Cheat and take shortcuts, I certainly will be where needed (there's nothing wrong with that.)
  • Have realistic expectations of the day and dont beat yourself up if things go a little off plan.
  • Be prepared in advance as far as possible, but remember even best laid plans can go pear shaped sometimes.
  • Meltdowns aren’t always avoidable despite all the preparation in the world (that goes for us too ha ha- I have been known to have the occasional 'mummy meltdown.' )
  • When all is done and the kids are asleep, pour yourself a nice glass of your favourite tipple, collapse on the sofa
  •   You did it ....Well done x 

Watch another FAMILY'S
 story here...

Autism and keeping Christmas fun- (Part 1)

                                           Christmas- school presents and shopping -(Part 2)

                                                 Friends , family, and growing up -( Part 3)
                                                        The National Autistic Society