There are many moments as a parent where you just need to take big breaths in and out and count to ten. Kids having tantrums, kids squabbling over toys, kids refusing to put their clothes on, kids refusing to take their clothes off, kids refusing to walk any further, kids refusing to drink from any cup that is not pink, kids emptying the contents of their bowl over the table, the floor & themselves, kids vomiting from the top bunk at midnight all over the floor and over their sleeping brother on the bottom bunk just a few hours before their father heads off to Sydney for the weekend and leaving you at home with the (now potentially infected with gastro) kids. Kids who wet the bed an hour after their elder sibling has vomited numerous times on the closed toilet lid, waking up (did I actually sleep?) to a rainy day (no chance of washing those sheets and towels) and to liquid all over the kitchen floor coming out from under the kitchen sink just weeks after we had the leaking dishwasher repaired. Yes, that did all happen last weekend and more!

Yet, I am grateful. I have to be grateful. I have to find the things that I am grateful for (or maybe I’d sink – it’s a coping mechanism). I much prefer to live life with a glass half full/Pollyanna kind of outlook.

I am grateful that whatever caused the vomiting did not spread to the rest of the household. I am grateful that the liquid coming from under the sink, was not in fact a leaking pipe, but a newish bottle of windex with a loose lid that had tipped over. I am grateful that I am an ‘old hat’ at looking after the kids for the weekend sans husband. I am grateful that this weekend, even though Mr FGB is working, it is a sunny day and I can catch up on that washing and we are off to a birthday party in the park.

I have many moments as a parent that I just need to take a big breath and push through the exhaustion and frustration and find that inner strength that I didn’t know that I possessed before I had children, but am grateful that this year these moments don’t feel like they are back to back with no reprieve, like they felt last year. This year, there are many more moments where I can breathe easily, get back on track and see the bigger picture, instead of feeling overwhelmed by the small minute by minute.

I’m OK this year, but I went through a long time last year when I wasn’t OK. It all got too much and I was able to talk about it with those who cared and get some more support and although I still have my ups and downs – I’m doing more than OK. Incidentally, I was very impressed this week to hear about “RUOK?” day. You can read more about it here and here. The idea is to make sure that you ask the question and make sure your friends are actually doing OK. A lot of us are pretty good at hiding it.

You can also read about what others are grateful for with the lovely Mira Narnie (we love you Brenda!), who is hosting this week while the gorgeous Maxabella has a little blog hiatus (we miss you Bron!)

P.S. I’m also grateful for this cute wooden game of croquet that we found on someone’s nature strip while on a walk one afternoon – love those kind of finds!
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