It has been another lovely weekend, our weekends are usually taken up with spending time with the children, pottering around at home, eating yummy food, and having a few treats too.
This weekend seemed to have gone by in a blur, especially because I am working tomorrow. I am sitting here trying to remember it all. In fact Friday night was not great because poor little Sophia had a cough and a temperature so I spent most of the evening looking after her as she was so hot. But it seemed it was just a 24 hr temperature because although she still has the cough she seems okay. I will see how she is tomorrow.
This post was supposed to be all about how lovely our weekend was, and it was. But tonight Sophia was crying and telling me about a few things at school that are not making her happy: “We don’t play enough” “she doesn’t let me sit next to her” she told me. I am a little worried about her, she seems so sad, she cries a fair bit and she feels quite low since starting school. I think she feels all over the place, it is difficult to adjust to change and to something that is so new and different to what may have been normal before. I love her school there are many passionate teachers who care a lot about their students, and a really lovely community of parents and children. But my Sophia, she is finding it hard.
And so am I. I don’t like to see her hurt or crying, sad and down. It is possibly the worst thing in the world to see your little one in tears about a situation they feel they cannot change. I am all about positive thinking, and I encourage her and tell her what an amazing little girl she is, how she is hard working, kind, caring, and loving. I try to encourage her to look at all the good traits she has. She is overly sensitive and the smallest thing can hurt her feelings so I understand that is part of her upset too.
I have been playing close attention to her and I try to understand where she is coming from. And I do. Big school is daunting, it’s everyday, you don’t get a day off unless you are sick. It is a lot to ask of a 5 year old and she is doing fantastically.
But sometimes, like now, it all gets too much for her and she gets ill.
She is such a fragile little lady and I love that about her so much, she desperately wants to belong and fit in but yet she is still my Sophia. I see it in her everyday in the smallest ways, how particular she is about her uniform, she likes to wear it a certain way. She knows what she likes to wear to school and what she is most comfortable in. I had initially brought her dresses, but she is not keen on them she prefers skirts and shirts, and black tights, not the grey fleece ones, never the grey fleece ones.
I love her so much I hope she settles down soon, I am looking so forward to half term so she can really slow down a bit. For us, for both Sophia and I especially, adjusting to school has been an experience. She does enjoy it, I helped out at their cinema night the other day and she has some lovely friends, she is happy there.
she is also still so little and trying desperately to figure out this ‘life’ thing. Its difficult, I have done it. School is exciting at first, and then its not as exciting as you thought it was because you have to make friends and sometimes girls are really really mean and you have to work hard, all day and you don’t play much, you get an hour for lunch and a break or two. And teachers can be mean and condescending too, they have a lot of stress, keeping up with the curriculum and keeping to tight deadlines. Its all a bit chaotic and very different to how we live at home.
I know that everything will work out and with lots of love and care from myself and my husband she will be okay. I make sure I talk to her a lot about school, how she feels, and I listen as much as I can to what she says. I know sometimes she may twist what really happens but all I want for her is to be happy.
Parenting these little ones has it’s challenges. It is a joy most of the time and we love being in each others company whether awake or asleep, there being something so peaceful and comforting about falling asleep last, my husband snoring, my son breathing deeply next to me and my daughter sound asleep in her bed, all safe, all well, and all loved. There is noting that could make me more happy. My husband and I in the midst of it all, we manage to juggle ‘life’ at its best and most challenging.
When the children are upset, and worried, scared or sad, we are able to comfort them as well as facing and dealing with our own ‘adult’ challenges. And it is all this amazing juggling act that we manage to succeed at, somehow.
Archie is just two , and he is at such a fantastic age, he is no trouble, he has a thirst for life, for the outdoors and the excitement of a new day, nothing phases him, he is calm and collected. He wears the most eye catching smile and sports the cutest dimples. He is not one to whine about anything unless I tell him: “no I don’t really want you to have another sweet!”
He doesn’t want for much.
He needs me, he needs a lot of love and affection. All things that I love about him, but in the beauty of all this, my two year old and I, I am also needed a lot by another very special human and that is my daughter. I need to make sure I have time for Sophia within this as well, especially because she is at school all day.
Sometimes Archie wont let me go in the afternoon, sometimes he doesn’t want Sophia to have a cuddle and that is hard as there is only one of me.
I am a place where I feel I have so much time with Archie and not half enough with Sophia. One way we have worked around this is by putting Archie to sleep first around 6.30 and Sophia later around 7.30-8 so that we can read her school books she brings home and I can help her practice her words, as she has made me so proud how eager she has been to read and can read so well. I am so proud of her and watching her sound out her words and read her books to me has been very special to witness. Of course some nights we don’t read in fact most nights its snacks and cuddles on the sofa. But when she reads her books to me and I see the concentration on her face, I see it makes her happy to show me what she can do, it brings me such happy tears.
But lately Archie has been napping in the day and then not going to sleep in the evening till quite late which means Sophia goes to bed before him and we don’t get that one on one time she and I desperately need.
Its funny how only a couple of nights of a different routine can throw you out completely. But that is something for me that is ever changing with our children. Some months they sleep so well through the night and are no trouble at all and other months like right now in January they wake in the late evening or early morning and get into our bed. They cough at night and wake themselves up, they are ill, or they don’t want to go to sleep.
Sleep with children is ever changing. Not so much as they get older, but while they are young.
I think the best way to deal with it is to go with the flow of things, if they are not sleeping well, you just have to embrace it or it becomes a constant battle and that is not my thing. Archie is currently sat next to me watching the iPad, it is 9pm, because he only woke up at 4pm today after falling asleep in the car when we went to Sainsbury’s to pick up a late lunch around 2.30 today. But like I said you just have to go with the flow as a parent sometimes, because the stress of keeping them in a constant routine is not worth it.
Although I agree children need consistency and routine, I also strongly feel that one day here and there throughout a month of failing to keep to a routine because your child has different ideas… is okay in my books.
I have to reiterate that I am looking so forward to half term in a couple weeks, to have Sophia home with me and to keep her nice and close for lots of cuddles, to forget about the school routine of early nights and early mornings.
We are going to Wales to celebrate her granny’s 50th. Which we are all very excited about. I know this will be so lovely for Sophia as she is a very family orientated little girl and loves nothing more than spending time with her loved ones, both children are looking so forward to seeing their cousin.
Did you experience or are you experiencing anything similar when your little one first started school? And are you strict with bedtimes or a little relaxed? And most importantly are you looking forward to half term!?