art journaling – disappointment

Well it’s Tuesday today. The day I get to take a couple of hours off parenting the sproggets and go along to the art journaling course.

Except that’s not what happened.

I went to art journaling. I even splashed some paint around on a page.

To the soundtrack of Moe screaming.

He was in the creche. He was pleased when we went in there. He sat at a little table and picked up a tea pot and said “tea” when I told him I was going to go to the room next door and asked him for a goodbye cuddle. Sprout waved enthusiastically, stoked to know she’d be spending a couple of hours in a room full of new toys and “nice blue women” (creche carers who wear blue uniforms).

When I heard him screaming I went back to the creche to check on him. One of the carers was cuddling him. He was being cared for. He was being comforted. Why was he screaming? Because it wasn’t me. He wanted me. Only I would do.

I settled him, he was happy. I went back. He played for a few minutes before the screaming started again.

It killed the joy for me. Knowing he was so distressed by my absence. Knowing he wanted to play at the creche and wanted me in the same room. Next door wasn’t good enough. Next door meant I wasn’t paying attention to him.

I put him on my back in the carrier. I tried to get into it. It just wasn’t that enjoyable with a grizzling baby on my back.

I really needed the art journaling class this week. I really, really needed a break. It’s been a tough 6 months, and I need a break from parenting the sproggets on my own. More than that though, this week has been really hard. Moe’s been breastfeeding very, very often. He’s cutting his i-teeth. He’s constantly grizzly and pointing to his mouth saying “houch”. I’m worn down. I was so looking forward to my couple of hours.

Instead I felt stressed. Other Mum’s felt stressed by his screaming. The poor creche staff persevered with him, cuddled him, comforted him.

I left early, dragging poor Sprout away from the creche before she was ready. I drove home with big, silent tears falling down my cheeks.

Later, when Bean was home, I sobbed. I raged. I sulked.

I am so, so disappointed.

posted by wildecrafted in journal and have Comments (8)

art journaling – inspiration

I have a new Tuesday afternoon pastime…

The Rainbow Coast Neighbourhood Centre runs a FREE art journaling course for mothers with post natal depression and/or anxiety. Some women have been diagnosed with PND and some, like me, have self referred because we’re feeling isolated, lonely, or a bit down. Not only is the course free, but the creche in the room right next door is free too.

Yesterday was the first class of the term, some other new women joined and some women were returning. The theme for yesterday was “inspiration”. The group leader gave us a quote, about 3 sentences long, that basically said inspiration rarely creates action but action always generates inspiration. Basically, don’t wait for the ideas to come, just start doing and the ideas will follow. It was a concept that spoke to me…

A mish mash of objects was placed on the table in front of us and we were given large markers to draw what we saw.

We were told to make it abstract, not realistic. To make it about shapes, not detail. We would be adding to it later on, making it more abstract.

I chose to draw the vase, rather than focus on the flowers in the vase, because the vase had flowers that looked like vulvas painted on it. I loved that! Someone else may not have seen vulvas, but I did. Beautiful, flowery vulvas. They were marvelous!

Once we’d drawn some shapes we got stuck in to adding colour with water colours, oil pastels and the huge selection of papers that we could glue on.

I used some corrugated cardboard, an old sewing pattern, some wrapping paper, a gold paper doily, a paisley napkin, some tissue paper and some maps. It really transformed the way it looked.

I had a fabulous time being able to speak to other adults without worrying about my children’s immediate needs. Adults who know the isolation I’m feeling as a mother, especially as a mother in a new town. The sprogs enjoyed themselves too. Sprout had more fun than Moe, because Moe was a little tired and because it was the first time I’ve ever left Moe with anyone he’s only just met. I felt guilty about leaving him, but he was having a fabulous time when I left, and they never left him to feel sad on his own. I walked in and he was having a cuddle with one of the women who had been looking after him. He was glad to see me, and I was feeling refreshed enough to be glad to see him too. Next week I’ll see if I can put him to bed for a sleep before we go, that will probably help, and he’ll get more comfortable with the space as time goes on. This outlet for me is important enough to move through the Mama guilt and know I’m able to do better by my children if I have this meaningful couple of hours time out from them each week.

I think I’ll really enjoy my Tuesday afternoons for the next little while…

posted by wildecrafted in journal and have Comments (8)