As a mother of adorable boy/girl twins with chronic health conditions, I take my job seriously. In fact, you could call me a serious mumma. The thing I am most serious about is creating an environment for my children to thrive, allowing them to be the best version of themselves.
As I see it, our job as a parent is to love and nurture our children, and provide opportunities and guidance for their growth. So, I make it my business to create these opportunities in a loving, nurturing environment, filled with fun and play. Sometimes it can be a tough call to balance this and still fit in the minimum 2+ doctors and therapy appointments per week, so I try to maximise the impact of activities, and ensure they cover off multiple developmental areas.
As part of my parenting journey, and through seeing countless specialists and therapists, there is a lot I’ve learnt along the way. I would like to share my experiences in the hope of helping other families to create environments for their children to thrive; by better understanding their developing child, navigating early intervention and connecting with their children to help them flourish.
So, read along and join me in what I see as Serious Mumma Business…
My Paradigm Shift
With the twins entering preschool, a developmental regression, multiple hospital visits and various weekly therapies everything started to become really overwhelming. How was I supposed to fit in weekly therapy appointments, all the at home exercises that make therapy so valuable, 3 days a week of preschool, and still manage to create an environment for my children to thrive?
And just to add to the stress, my daughter’s anxiety and poor self-regulation was having an impact on her participation in preschool and our family life.
These days there is such an emphasis on having the appropriate academic skills before your children even attend school. And, while I can see the importance of this and want my children to start on an even playing field, I came to realise that a piece of the puzzle was missing and there had to be a better way of approaching the situation we were facing.
Even if my daughter had all of the skills required, she would not succeed in school, or life for that matter, without age-appropriate socio-emotional skills. Besides, how could she even begin to process any learning when her little body was so often in fight/flight mode.
So, rather than overwhelming her with 3 days of preschool, weekly physio and OT, structured and free play, my mind made a BIG SHIFT. I cut back physio to every 2 weeks. Rather than weekly OT, we would now incorporate this, where possible into her time at preschool. And I would implement programs at home to help with her self-regulation, social skills and her sense of security and attachment.
And, while we still have fairly regular meltdowns, I can see some improvements. Most of all though, it has changed my stress levels and allowed me to be the parent I want to be.
Join in the Fun!