So I am currently feeling emotionally numb. And not sure which realm I belong to. Am I numb due to needing to power through on mummy strength, merely a mummy survival technique or am I just failing miserably
I take you back to almost 3 months ago where I found myself totally exhausted with a new baby (who did sleep), but a 2 year old who was up ALL night scratching! I felt extremely helpless yet had 3 children to look after, function for and entertain fully as it was the summer holidays. (And I forget to mention a house in disrepair as we thought an extension was a good idea!!?)
The Play Date-
A few minutes from arriving at a friends house my son’s face ballooned up. His hands welted up like he’d rolled in stinging nettles and he was screaming, scratching till he bled and begging me to help him. We dashed up to their bathroom with his soap and flannel (I always carry) in my hand to wash him down in warm water and rid him of whatever had started this reaction. M is a very sensitive child (a long story, I’ll fill you in in later blogs) and this wasn’t the first bad reaction I had witnessed so I knew what I had to do. Washing normally calms things but this time there was no avail. Back downstairs to administer BabyPiriton while I held a cold flannel to his burning welted skin. Then the 4 month old baby begins to cry. My friend a mummy of two herself attended to T; reassures her and my other daughter and her own children aswell. We all watched in complete panic at M’s face getting redder and redder and he literally fights me with all his strength to scratch his arms and neck to pieces! My darling friend starts to fight back the tears blaming herself, her home and her dog……but the truth was, it was no ones fault and I for one did not blame her or any other factor that was in her home at that very minute-all I could think about was getting him home and in the bath.
My friend offered to run him a bath at hers but my gut feeling was to just get out, get home where he was ‘safe’. Yep ridiculous….safe! He was safe at my friends- no one was going to harm him but something had triggered him to harm himself!
Then the practical reasoning behind going home kicked in- washing powders! If I bathed M there and then wrapped him in a towel not washed in non-bio (specific make) that could set him off again!!!
So with my eldest remaining to play with her friend and continuing to be reassured by my ‘calm’ voice (I was screaming inside) I grabbed T and M and ran to the car instantly strapped both in and sped home listening to the choir of cries!
Bath run and both still crying, I stripped M off, laid him straight in the bath, whipped out my boob and sat on the cold tiled floor to feed T. All the while singing nursery rhymes to keep what I thought was the children calm… but maybe it was me?
I think the moments that followed then were a mixture between what the hell am I doing, why is no one here to help me, then despair followed by anger! Why my boy, why this, why now…..why, why, why?
So it’s safe to say I felt like I was a total failure of a mother. I felt guilty for leaving K at her friends as I couldn’t possibly cope with another to drag home (but my reasoning was to not let her down by removing her from the play date originally planned!), guilty that poor M had reacted at what was meant to be a fun play date and guilty that T had to wait so long for her feed! Guilt, guilt, guilt!
So I figured the reaction was definitely my friends dog, yet M has been around other dogs and been fine. So the next mission will be to find out which dogs. Is it the fur type, oil type, salvia or has he built up an immunity to certain dogs? M had not touched her dog and only walked in and sat on the sofa! (My friends home is well kept and clean and there was no sign of dog).
I continue to guess to whether it was fur airborne or to whether M was low in his immunity that day and just couldn’t handle a normal sensitivity and so reacted so strongly!??
The next few weeks I kept M ‘safe’ in his home environment! I avoided many friends homes with indoor pets dogs and cats-and we had a few quiet weeks. I struggled as my home was not in a great state though liveable and probably not as bad as I felt it was- I was far too house proud to invite people to ours. So here is where my blogging begins- my lowest point as a mother- hoping for an emotional release I suppose!
People who know me know I am a very positive person and always make light of the darkest of situations but this had happened with limited sleep, a constant stream of being needed and quite honestly I was beyond exhausted and felt like everything was totally out of control!
So living with acute allergies is tough but being a mummy to a child with them is emotionally frustrating, heartbreaking and quite honestly exhausting! I think I am surviving not failing but it’s hard to distinguish the two most of the time!
I am in no means comparing eczema and allergies to other awful situations darling children go through nor do I want sympathy- this is merely my story; our allergy journey in hopes it will help others.