The Story of This Year

November 2, 2012 § 2 Comments

The reason for this blog arises from the story of this year.

In March we welcomed little Robin into our family. When he was six weeks old he contracted whooping cough, and spent a month in hospital followed by another ten days a few weeks after that.

He was extremely ill for quite a long time, and I give thanks every day that he is expected to make a full recovery. The time of his illness was shocking and very distressing.  In the corner of our hospital room there was a window, through which I could see a tree. I remember watching as the leaves on the tree slowly went orange, then began to disappear as they fell to the ground out of sight. The tree came to represent all of life and the world that kept on being, and evolving, while I sat in a hospital room holding my ill baby, counting time by the number of minutes or hours between coughing episodes that almost stopped his little heart.

When we finally came home to convalesce, everything had changed. The way Robin needed to be mothered was different to all four children before him. He could never be left alone, not even for a quick trip to the loo.

I had changed, deeply. Initially I felt invincible, more assertive and less scared of other people. But as Robin began to get stronger, I began to feel as though I was falling apart. My body began to come down from the stress of multiple adrenaline rushes per day, per hour. I don’t know how I had found the resources within me to be strong for Robin, for the other four kids that I saw for two hours every second day, and for myself. But like a balloon that is blown up, and up to its limit, I suddenly popped and deflated.

I tried to resume my ‘normal life’. I went back to work, took the other children back to their usual activities.  But Robin’s coughs would return. That ‘normal life was like a bus as it took off from the kerb, gathering speed and accelerating off without me. I knew I would never catch it.

I released all commitiments for the rest of this year – an easy decision in the end. The children are back at school for their final term, and all I have to do now is look after myself and Robin, and be ‘Mum’ to my five children. The only time pressure I face is the 3pm school pick up.

Sewing and creating has always been healing for me. So too with writing. So in the spirit of healing this blog serves as a vessel for my memories of this difficult year. A little box where I can acknowledge my experiences, then close the lid and   walk away to live the rest of the day, feeling free.


§ 2 Responses to The Story of This Year

  • Di Rochford says:

    You are truely an amazing woman Kirrilee, thank you for sharing your story! Di x

  • Alit says:

    This is such a poignant reminder that when our little ones suffer, it impacts the whole family. That we, as mothers, have to be so strong in times of trial, and can only allow ourselves the luxury of falling apart once the worst threat is over. So it falls on us to keep our families as safe as we can, and deal with headache as best we can. Whooping cough scares the living cap out of me, which is why I drove our Well Baby Clinic Nurse up the wall making sure our close, and extended family is up to date on their Pertussis immunizations. One tend to think a child gets ill, and gets better, but Pertussis takes such a heavy toll on their little bodies! Best wishes to you, and your little one on the long road to recovery.

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