Parenting Blog Carnival

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I’ve been wanting to do this blog carnival for ages. I made the badge about six months ago. Then I got side tracked and never got round to it. Yet the idea has nagged away at me. The thing I love about reading other people’s blogs is that you get a little snapshot of their lives, what’s really behind those closed doors. It is like you are reading their diary and finding out their private thoughts. Does this make me voyaristic? Probably.

It’s that amazing realisation that other people are just the same – struggle with the same things, worry about the same things, care about the same things. The blogs I love don’t put up a facade, they show what it’s really like, at least in some aspects of their lives.

So many times I read about a person, who has got an awful lot to deal with and I wonder how do they cope. Then I wonder how would I cope. I wanted to share some of these stories and get a glimpse at what it’s really like, both the positive and negative. The thing is parenting is hard, damn hard. That’s when you have one child with no additional needs, surrounded by help.

I’m not going to lie: these posts are so truthful they will touch your heart – and a couple might just break it. But that’s what makes them important and necessary.

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So come and walk a mile in these shoes.

Rachel from Midlife Singlemum writes about the positives of being a single parent miles away from any family who could support her. I love her philosophy, that if we all put our problems and difficulties into the middle at the end of the day we would take our own. I think it’s a good point. Sometimes we feel so stuck in our situation we don’t look for the positives even when they are right in front of it. Rachel’s blog is a really brilliant resource for if you’re considering IVF, particularly if you are deciding to do it on your own. I love her post about the advice she received when talking to a doctor about having a child on her own.

Netanya from Dummies For Parenting has written an amazingly heart-wrenching post about coping with losing four pregnancies. Posts like this are so brave and really important as it is still such a taboo subject. So many people just carry on with their lives and never discuss it. It can only be a good thing to talk to others. The thing I find shocking is the insensitive comments, I know people are just trying to be helpful but sometimes it really is better to say nothing. I really hope that other people in the same or similar situation can read this, I know it’s not going to change anything, but if it makes you feel just a little better then it’s a good thing.

Anya at Older Single Mum has written a really positive post about being a single parent. It is one of the things I wonder about quite often. There are times when I have a few days when I’m on my own with the girls and for a second I think this is what it’s like being a single parent. But of course it isn’t, it’s just a small taste of it and it gives me a great deal of respect for anyone who cares for children on their own. Anya’s story has a lovely happy ending too, it is a truly modern love story and you really must have a read.

Danielle from Twopointfourchildren writes about what is really unimaginable: coping with infant loss. I’m not surprised she is asked how she copes, she writes about miscarriage and ectopic pregnancy. Baby R was born at  26 weeks and was with them for just nine weeks. This post is so searingly honest and heartbreaking, you will need tissues. However  it’s the final words and picture which  I’m left with. It’s a message for anyone coping with a difficult situation.

Tania at Larger Family Life writes about her life with 11 children – and counting. It’s not the amount of children that would get me asking the question how do you cope – but the fact she gets up at five every day – FIVE! I know! There’s no way I could cope with that. People seem to think that because you have a lot of children you must be supermum to cope. Tania’s post is so honest and I’m sure everyone can identify with it.

Candi at Looking for Blue Sky has blogged about coping with being a lone parent to three children one of whom has asperger’s and one cerebal palsy. Her post is so positive, as is her blog, even when faced with external challenges from a blinkered government who seem determined to take any financial support away from the most vulnerable members of our society. With her I hope for more awareness and compassion for those with additional needs.

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So how do I feel after reading all these posts? Well it has been a mix of emotions. It has confirmed my own answer to the question how I cope – for having twins is nothing really – especially now they are two and no longer babies. But of course for everyone, whatever your circumstances, some days are hard and feel like a real struggle.

While I’ve been writing this post My soundtrack has been rather fitting as I started off playing Ed Sheeran Small Bump and as I read Candi’s post  Florence and the Machine Shake it Out came on and it’s these words which I’m left with:

I like to keep my issues strong,
It’s always darkest before the dawn.

How To Take Part

It’s not too late if you still want to join in – I’ve actually posted this a bit earlier than I had planned. A few people said they wanted to write a post but didn’t get chance and there are few people I’m going to nag about joining in.  So I will hold this again in a month’s time.

Here are a few questions which might help, you can use them as a question and answer style post if you want.

1. What is it about your life which has made someone ask how do you cope?

2. What is the best thing about the situation?

3. What is the hardest thing?

4. What gets you through the day?

5. What would you change if you could?

6. What piece of advice would you give to someone finding themselves in your situation?

All you have to do is publish your post in the usual way on your own blog in the next couple of weeks. Send me the link, my email is rebecca dot english@hotmail dot com I will put the all together and publish it on the 6th of August. If you don’t have a blog then email me and I can publish it on my blog as a guest post (you can be anonymous if you want).

Remember to grab the badge or to link back to this post so that other people can find it too if they want to.

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