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When the protective Lioness roars

As mothers, we have built in “feeling sensor” it’s when we get a feeling something just isn’t quite right with our little ones.

Even if they aren’t in the same room, building, town or even the same country, no matter how old we get or how old they get, it never goes away, when there’s something amiss we just know!

I have to say, sometimes it can be a bit off, I’ll have the strongest feeling something is going to happen or something is wrong, but in reality it’s fine, but I’d say I have a 70% accuracy for knowing when my little ones need me.

So today in a play area we go to quite a lot, I got the feeling.

Jack ran off on his own, as he does and I was sat in a place I could see all parts of the play area, so I could see him at all times.

I didn’t even hear him scream, I just suddenly got this feeling he needed me.

I stood up, to look at him…Jack was walking away from this other kid who was following him and hitting him, Jack fell to the floor and this kid started kicking him!

This all happened within a few seconds, I was there by his side within this time, but it felt like a slow motion lifetime.

I felt this rage in my belly, I can’t explain, but it was as if my inner lioness was roaring, like I needed to rescue my baby cub…

OK OK, I know it wasn’t that bad, we aren’t at war and my son’s life wasn’t at risk, but he was scared and being hurt by another person, all-be-it this kid was no older than 3, definitely around Jack’s age, but still when someone is causing your child to be upset, the feeling you get as a mother is indescribable.

If it had just been a “toddler smack” I’d of probably waited to see if Jack either “toddler smacked” them back or told them off (the more likely option from Jack), but I saw the fear in my baby’s eyes and this boy wasn’t hitting like a toddler, he was using his fists to punch, this little boy was obviously used to playing rough.

So before I had a chance to compose myself, or even think about it, I found myself hunched over in the soft play area telling a strangers kid he was naughty and he shouldn’t hurt other kids.

Was it wrong of me to call another person’s child naughty? Probably…

Do I regret it? Probably not…

Should I have just pulled my child away, comforted him and left the parents to deal with whether their child should be punished? I don’t know…but I know it was my instinct to protect my child and to show him that if someone hurts you it is NOT ok.

I know if my child was that intentionally cruel and hurtful to another child, their “play time” would be over and they’d either be sitting out until their siblings finished playing or we’d be going home.

Usually, I’d wonder if I’d overreacted, to how bad a situation was. But me and every other mum in that place were sat gawking at the destructive rampage this kid was on, even after I told him he was naughty and he continued to hit and kick other children.

I have to say hats off to the mum, she brought him over, there was a bit of resistance, but she relented and got her kid to apologise.

It is embarrassing, really we’re all in the same boat, with these tiny dictators trying to show us up at every opportunity, it’s always a worry if you’re going to have to face the “judgemental, snooty mum”, well that definitely isn’t me, I have three very normal, very cute but at times extremely irritating children, I’m in no position to judge…

I mean at the end of the day, they are kids!

They push the boundaries, that could have easily been Jack making another kid cry, sometimes he shocks me with how brutal he can be to his own brother, so I’m not one to judge. All kids want to see what they can get away with and I don’t think anyone is exempt from their kid misbehaving, it’s how we deal with it that counts.

So maybe I should have waited for the mum to come over, before telling her son off, but I know if that were Jack he’d be less likely to do it ever again if a stranger were to tell him

 off, it would terrify him, so I don’t think I’d thank someone for telling my kid off, but I think having the fear that someone, especially a stranger might tell them off, would prevent future naughty moment (we can hope).

But to be honest kids are pretty unpredictable, so they’ll probably just do what the hell they like whilst making us look like terrible parents at the same time.

I’ve diverged a bit in this post, I’ve been thinking about it all day, knowing I’d write it. To be honest I was pretty upset when it happened and I was angry that my son told me “Mummy I’m too scared to go back in” but throughout writing this piece, it’s put it into perspective, that we’re all mums just trying to raise our kids into semi-descent human beings, so instead of judging the mum and her son, I need to look at the bigger picture and not let my inner mama-bear take over before thinking.

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The problem with Depression when you have kids…

According to Mind (2015) Charity, 1 in 4 people will experience some kind of mental health problem in the course of a year.

Having watched close family members suffer with Depression, I always felt lucky I didn’t and I thought I knew what it was, how it felt…I didn’t.

I imagined being in the corner of a dark room, huddled up and crying, not that those characteristics can’t be Depression, but for me it really felt like I was questioning whether I had it.

There are five big problems with Depression and having kids that I have found…

1. People Don’t Understand.

I have two beautiful kids, a loving fiancé and a roof over our heads….what have I got to be depressed about, right? If I’m honest, I’m not quite sure, it’s more the things that have happened previously that have left the damage to my mental state. Even if no-one said it, I would still question whether I was a faker, because to the outside world I should be stood on top of it, when really, behind closed doors, Depression drags me back down and whispers quietly enough for no-one else to hear.

2. You can have happy times, which are filled with guilt.

On the cover Depression means you should be in tears 24/7 and never experience any joy. But I do have joy, I am watching two little people that I created grow! It’s hard because I have my moments where I am purely happy and then I’m left wondering if I really have Depression, then something minor will happen that throws a spanner into the works of my day and I will go spiralling into a low mood again.

3. Guilt

Having Depression is hard enough, we’re encouraged to be open and talk about it, but let’s be honest, if we had the choice we’d rather not have it! I constantly feel guilty, thinking maybe I’m not being the best I can be for my boys, worrying that I’ve wasted a few hours of my life each time I freak out and get mad about something, when really I can’t help it.

4. Depression ain’t pretty

I haven’t got the quiet withdrawn “typical” type of Depression you see on the soaps, if I’m honest I can hold a conversation with most people, I can be quite sociable. But the problem is, after talking to someone I’ll be analysing what they think of me, I’ll obsess over it. Certain situations will get me extremely stressed, something as simple as not being able to get a toy to work for the boys, it’s like I can literally feel my blood boiling. I get angry, I cry, I sulk, I obsess, I laugh, I smile…I do have all these different emotions but I’ve still got Depression.

5. It’s always there

I’m not saying you can’t ever be Depression free, but I feel for me personally, it will always be in the back of my mind. I know my triggers, I feel it happening, I can’t stop it! Maybe one day I will have trained my brain to cope with certain situations, I’d love it if I could! I used to be so strong minded and confident, now I feel as if I’m someone I don’t even recognise, I feel I will always pick fault with my performance as a mother, my appearance, my capability as a housewife and my success in any career route I may take. I’m sure one day I will be able to make my self better, I’m trying now for my children.

The problem with having Depression when you have kids is you really don’t have the time to help yourself, it sort of becomes second nature to put your kids first, but really once you have them, what would life be without them…nothing!

(Unfortunately Depression isn’t very thoughtful when it comes to these situations)