Get to Know Kylie Farley,
Written By: Kylie Farley
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WHAT THEY DON’T TELL YOU BEFORE YOU BECOME A PARENT
When you fall pregnant it seems that everyone you meet feels the need to discuss
with you the ins and outs of becoming a parent. What to expect, what to do, what
not to do. How much you are going to love it and how amazing it is!
I’ve even had a door-to- door salesman give me his two cents worth on my son’s
runny nose and his eczema (true story)
They run pre natal classes to teach you all about birth, how to swaddle your
baby, how to look after your baby, how to change a nappy, how to settle your
baby. You can even attend breast-feeding classes to teach you how to feed your
baby. This is all great in hindsight
But what no one tells you is you are about to embark on an emotional roller
coaster that you can quiet simply never get off. Parenthood is what I imagine to
be like having a spilt personality. In a matter of minutes I can flip from being the
proudest parent in the world of perfect angels to secretly plotting how I can sell
them on the black market.
The most important thing that gets left out is that bottom line motherhood is a
damn tough gig, at times very relentless and you will feel like you are living in
Groundhog Day. There is not many that will admit this but I will proudly put my
hand up and say “ yep its tough”
Would I change it for the world? No.
Would I do it again in a heartbeat? Yep
Does my heart ache every day for families that cant conceive children? Yep
But that doesn’t change the fact that it is difficult and at times you find yourself
googling for a one way ticket to the Maldives. Who am I kidding? A one way
ticket to anywhere as long as you are alone will be fine!
I am the proud mother to (as every mother says) the two most beautiful children
in the world Rubi 2.5 and Parker 8 months old. I also have a rock of a husband
whom without I cannot say where I would be, he has rescued me from more
tsunami sized meltdowns over the years than I care to admit. I really do have the
perfect little family and no that is not a social media fantasy like so many pretend
to be living, I really do have it but I still struggle every single day and at times
question what am I even doing.
When we fell pregnant the first time we were totally naive about how we were
going to put this newborn on a schedule and it was going to just slot right into
our lives everybody laughed at us and told us how deluded we were.
We welcomed our daughter into the world four weeks early after an easy labor
and she was just the cruisest calmest kid you will ever come across, we did get
her into a routine very early and she just went with the flow, don’t get me wrong
I had plenty of days with her that I would of happily given her to anyone who
would take her but for the most part she was quite simply a dream baby.
I absolutely breezed through this motherhood thing, everyone commented oh
she is a reflection of you; you’re calm so she is calm.
It was no surprise that when Rubi was 14 months old we were expecting our
We were so excited although I did get racked with that terrible mum guilt, what
have I done to Rubi? She no longer will have my undivided attention, this and
pregnancy hormones used to make me cry a lot. Hubby always reasoned with me
that we are giving her the best gift we could ever give her and reminded me that
she is not the first child to be an older sibling.
Then of course you question how could you possibly love another child as much
as your first born?? Well all that worry was for nothing my heart just instantly
divided and exploded just as much when we welcomed our son Parker into the
world. He was the most perfect little boy I’ve ever laid my eyes on. In hospital he
was so calm and cruisy, feeding every four hours sleeping like a dream. I actually
said out loud, I think he could be even cruiser than Rubi! A statement I will live to
eat my words
Another thing that no one tells you when you are pregnant is how polar opposite
your children can be. Parker turned out to be a next level baby and he quite
simply knocked the wind out of me. Let me touch back on the comment I
received when Rubi was a baby “she’s so calm because you are and your such a
good mum” so what was I this time? A psycho mum?
So here I am 8 months on and am starting to see the light. I spent a good part of
the first few months of his life drowning and unable to see the bigger picture. I
have lost both my parents, my mum passed away when I was 13, she was only 36
and I lost my dad when I was 23. Both of them played such a pivotal role in
making me the person I am today but never in the 22 years without mum have I
missed her more than I have in the last year. I have spent many of nights crying
just thinking how different things could be if they were just here to help me.
Nothing compares to the cuddle from your mum when things are tough,
Parker had reflux which saw him never wanting to be put down obviously this
was because he was in pain when he wasn’t being held upright, he was on
medication which didn’t really help a great deal. I spent all day holding him
otherwise he would be screaming, poor Rubi needed my attention too but luckily
for me she took it all in her stride its like she just understood her brother needed
He was always relaxed of course when around others to the point where no one
believed how hard a time he was giving me; I even got accused to lying (all in jest
of course) but still a comment that cuts deep.
Friends and family started to label him as demanding, clingy I even heard that he
was a piece of work!!! He was always being compared to his big sister and their
different personality’s this as parents was a tough pill to swallow. We can say
those things about our son but for anyone else to hit a real nerve with us, at the
end of the day he was just a poor little boy with something bothering him that he
just could not communicate.
Someone even commented “oh well, Lucky he’s cute”! Please is that not the most
ridiculous thing you have ever heard?? Like it matters, he is my son and nothing
he could ever do would make me love him any less
There came a point when he was so miserable all day that I actually questioned if
he even liked me, as I said the words out loud I knew it was totally ridiculous but
at the same time in my sleep deprived haze it seemed totally rational.
At six months old and him still crying all day, naps were just a stressful battle
that would end with him in a vicious cycle of over tiredness, hence not sleeping
at night either. I could not remember the last time I had a good night sleep my
breaking point come when my daughter had a fall and broke her leg. She was in a
full leg cast, now let me tell you she is a mile a minute kid so to keep her still and
occupied was not easy, she’s the sort of kid that upends a room in 3 seconds flat
leaving you actually believing you have been ransacked.
She went form being a champion sleeper to waking multiple times a night either
in pain or just that her cast was heavy and uncomfortable, for the first four nights
she actually was awake form midnight till minimum 4 in the morning. So
between her and Parker I literally was getting no sleep, hence the phone call got
made to sleep school, I remained quite calm they said some one will call you back
for assessment in two weeks I got my date and time and pretty much counted
down the days for the next two weeks. By the time I got the call, I was frantic,
Parker was screaming I was crying, they obviously thought I was some kind of
psycho because I was booked in for a week long stay just five days later.
Hallelujah! Could this be one turning point?
Well of course my cheeky little monkey was the textbook baby in there, he
actually slept all night! Well he did wake but self settled so in my eyes that’s a
He went down perfectly during the day for all his naps except for one where he
finally showed the nurses his full potential. She battled him for 50 minutes and
said to me I’m going to get him up he wont sleep I said ok but he will laugh in
your face! Sure enough he did, her response Parker you little beast!
I racked my brain as to what was different at sleep school to at home; the only
thing I could come up with is that for five days he had my undivided attention. I
didn’t have to worry about anything else so he had 100% of my focus. This did
wonders for me with bonding with him but of course when we came home it was
not possible to keep that up I still have a house to run, a husband and of course
another child to look after.
We had a few semi good nights then by the time I had my follow up call a week
later I was a wreck again.
Any way long story short he still is not a good sleeper, on a good night I only get
up around 4 times. I’m still waiting for that magical I sleep through the night
milestone But I have had break through, a light switch just seemed to go off and
he sleeps perfectly during the day and when he is awake he is happy this in turn
has made things a million times easier to cope with. Dealing with a screaming
baby all day then not having him sleep at night is bound to bring down even the
toughest of people. I’m the sort of person who doesn’t cope well when things
don’t go to plan, I write lists about anything and everything and I plan
meticulously everything I do, this kind of personality and being a mum are an
evil combination. Number one rule of motherhood, expect the unexpected.
So how did I get through this?
I lowered my expectations, sometimes you just need to stop what you are doing
and be in the moment with your children, everything else can wait. Since I have
adopted this attitude I have been totally enjoying being a mother, a far cry from a
few months back when I felt I was simply going through the motions.
I finally feel like I’m back in control, when it comes to juggling the house and
getting food on the table every night sometimes you just have to let it go. My
argument with my hubby was always well if I don’t do it who will?
His response always the same, just let it go it will all be there in the morning. The
kids will never remember that you didn’t fold washing one night or you left
dishes in the sink. What they will remember is that they were loved. For
someone who is borderline OCD this is tough but by far the best piece of advice
I’ve been given.
So what do you do to survive the trails and tribulations of being a mum?
-You remember that you are not alone, all mums go through it some are just not
as open as I am being.
-Surround yourself with similar people; I am fortunate enough to have an
amazing mothers group who would drop everything to help you out.
-Have a support person, mine is my neighbor and friend who has children very
similar in age to my two and I quiet simply would not have survived without all
she has done to help me.
– Lower expectations of household chores, go for tidy over clean. No one seems
to notice that you haven’t mopped the floor if the place is tidy. (Not easy when
you are living with mini cyclones I know)
-Most importantly take some time out for yourself each week, do not loose your
self as a mum, even though it is the most important role of your life do not let it
define you. At the end of the day you are still you. Take a break; it is amazing
what even 20minutes without someone demanding your attention or climbing
all over you can do to for your sanity.
-Take the time to get out of the house every day; even if it’s just to sit outside,
fresh air changes everything
I am so fortunate to have my hubby who balances me out, our motto is we may
not have it all together but together we have it all.
When I get racked with mum guilt of am I enough for my children I just stop take
a breath and remember I am the mother they need me to be and that’s all that
Yes my kids are close in age, but if you think my hands are full you should see my
heart, it is bursting.
When you are sitting having a tea party with your 2.5 year old daughter and she
says “there is so much love in this house” all I can do is smile (whilst wiping
away the tears and know I must be doing something right.
Parent hood is tough there is no denying that but it is also the most rewarding
thing you will ever do, so when its tough remember it will get easier and that it
goes so fast so just stop everyday to take a moment and breathe every last detail
of them in for you will never get this day with them again.
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