Regular readers of this blog will know that I’ve recently completed an extensive course of CBT for PTSD and anxiety. Those who know me have expressed their gladness that I finally felt able to access help and support after the traumatic birth of my son almost eight years ago; strangely though, it was something much more mundane that led me to take that first step towards recovery. I knew- of course I did- that I needed help, but it wasn’t until an everyday activity became more and more difficult for me that I was forced to accept it and take the plunge. It’s funny how our fears and anxieties manifest themselves. For me, it was driving. All of a sudden, being behind the wheel terrified me. I experienced my first ever panic attack last year, prompted by having to drive an unfamiliar car. Yikes. So being asked to test drive the new Vauxhall Crossland X for a week should have been serious meltdown material for me.
CBT has truly turned things around for me, and instead of taking my fears and anxieties and running away, I agreed to do it. I signed the documents, took delivery and drove through some barriers.
I don’t expect everyone to understand, but when you have a fear of driving, just being behind an unfamiliar wheel can be terrifying. The difference between now and last year is over 9 months of therapy, and a renewed passion to fight this for all it’s worth. Here are my thoughts on raising a family and driving through some barriers with the Vauxhall Crossland X.
Ok, so the first thing that I look for in a car, after I’ve assessed how scary it might be to drive it, is how it looks. Knowing very little about engines and specifics, this is a good place to start! Immediately we LOVED the vibrant orange! More than that though, the Crossland X is a really nice car to look at. It’s nicely rounded and not too big, nor too squat.
The first time I sat down to write a blog post I never once imagined it was anything more than a diary entry. For me. Not for you, or for your sister or your friend or anyone else. I didn’t even publish the first few posts because it was the act of writing them that mattered more than anything else. But like every other writer, I needed an audience and I soon discovered I needed a purpose too. Writing for a cause just kind of happened.
I started by writing about my son. My beautiful boy, who was ripped from my body in a blur of panic and white hot fear. Born into silence. Born into chaos. Born alone, while I slept. I needed to write. I needed to spew forth all the emotions and the confusion that was rattling around inside me and I needed to try and make sense of it somehow. Writing has always been my release, ever since I was a child, and it’s only natural for me to need the prop during times of crisis. (more…)
Yesterday was National Sisters Day so the girls and I have been celebrating! Being one of five girls, I always knew I wanted a big family, and it hasn’t really been a surprise that three of my four are girls too. Girls are the theme of the family in general and sometimes I feel a little sorry for Luka being the only boy- but he loves it really. The lovely people at Zapf Creations asked if they could send us a BABY born interactive sister doll to mark the occasion, so of course we said yes! I was also challenged to ask the girls to think about what being a sister means to them, what they love about it and what they maybe would change if they could…! So here it is. Our thoughts on the BABY born interactive sister doll, and the girls’ thoughts on ‘why I love my sister.’… celebrating #NationalSisterDay in style!
The girls were so excited when the doll arrived! Bella is a huge fan of dollies and at the moment she absolutely loves styling hair so she was over the moon! I carefully explained that this one was to share with her sister, and so far it’s worked out ok. They do tend to share well in general, and I think they like the idea of the doll being another sister to play with. They’ve named her Anna. (more…)
My second baby was born amidst beeps and wires. A stranger’s hands plucked him from my body and thrust him into the world. A stranger’s hands held him close, and willed him to take a breath. A stranger’s hands were his first experience of human contact, in a cold and sterile operating theatre. His little blue body was taken away to have tubes inserted and his chest massaged. And he did it. He breathed. He turned pink. He screamed!
And all the while, I slept.
And when I awoke, there was this baby. He was wrapped in a blue blanket and though I knew that I was supposed to have a baby, I couldn’t help but wonder who he was. Why were they placing this baby on my chest and telling me to feed him? Why did my arms feel like lead? And why, oh why, did I want to run away and scream into the sky? (more…)