Life of a Mum

Bad days…..

Where to begin…… and that’s the thing I think; it’s so very hard to explain to someone that hasn’t experienced it.

Constant uncontrollable worry, mind working overdrive, daydreaming, overthinking, panic, doubt, anger, annoyance………. just wanting to hide away.

Sometimes there’s a clear reason why it happens; an argument, a bad day at work, a particular stroppy toddler, or just me judging or critiquing myself too harshly.

My anxiety feels as if everyone in the world is waiting for me to trip up, so that they can laugh at me; it makes me second guess my every move or decision. I therefore overthink everything; I critique myself so heavily- and also I take others comments to heart, a simple statement from them I manage to turn into a criticism.


You are walking down the stairs carrying a pile of washing, your foot slips- the feeling of being about to fall! That’s the feeling……. the breath grabbing, heart pounding, ‘oh shit’ feeling…..the feeling over and over, and over. For no real reason; I can be having a good day and then it comes.

Throat tightening….

Heart pounding…..

Hot and sweaty…..

Can’t breathe……

It’s bloody awful.

And then there’s the fears and horrid thoughts….

This began when Dorothea was tiny; I used to worry that something horrible would happen in the night. Often I woke- convinced she was tangled in the bedcovers, or that she’d fallen off the bed, I’d rolled on her etc. Etc.

So many nights I‘d wake hot and panicked; stretch out to told her and be convinced; even if just for a moment, that she was cold- the poor child would generally grumble under Mummies prods- but I would sign relief and try and settle to sleep once again.

This has been happening more and more recently……

That same feeling of dread; suddenly waking and thinking something horrid has happened to her. Or other feelings of dread; being woken to a message or call of bad news, having irrational fear of weird things (cranes, driving under train bridges, overtaking lorries…)

And I’m so flipping tired!!!!

No not tired; it’s fatigue- it’s a tiredness that sleep won’t resolve. Not that I can sleep- although I’d love to (I’d take a week straight)- when I do sleep I have the funkiest dreams ever! And when I don’t sleep I visit the kitchen and eat custard and drink lemonade.

I feel exhausted; tired of thinking, tired of feeling nervous, tired or being ‘on alert’ and tired of that feeling of impending doom. Being able to rest would be a real treat.

All this seems to be driven by my thoughts, anxieties and self critique; but then there’s the very real physical symptoms!

– regular headaches; always behind one eye, they make me take myself off to bed.

– racing heart/palpitations/chest tightness

– throat tightness and difficulty breathing or talking

– flushing/overheating/sweating

– hormonal imbalance; disappearing and then heavy periods, mood swings, loss of libido

– bladder issues; peeing more with increased urgency

( I’m a nurse so I get that although these are actually very real physical symptoms- they are very stronger linked to my mental health).

I feel lost; unappreciated, silly, foolish- I take comments and criticism too harshly. Somedays I feel I’m useless at everything; others I can see my talents and strengths and have confidence.

But it’s how to take control?????

– I know I’m not everything I sometimes judge myself to be

– I know I have skills, knowledge, gifts and areas of expertise

– I know I’m appreciated, loved, cared for, trusted and wanted

– I know I’m kind, honest, genuine, social and loving

But how can I be all that…….. how can I be everything I know I can be, at my best…… when right now I feel at my worst?

For now I need time…..

time to rest

– time to be selfish and prioritise me

– time to think AND time not to think

– time for family and friends

– time to make decisions

– time for fresh air and exercise

– time for talking, for listening, and for being quiet

– time to make the right decisions for me

Life of a Mum, Other fabulous ladies

Sex after babies…. (guest blog)

There. I said it. It’s a tricky thing, so why does nobody talk about it? And, most importantly, what can we do to make it better?

Most of us struggle in one way or another with sex after we have kids, so why is it seemingly taboo to talk about?

So. Here you are. You’ve had a baby or two. You love your partner, and you’ve made a great life together. In the throes of parenthood, you’re tired, you’re busy, you’re caring for littles, and the last thing on your mind is sex. It’s easy to get lost in the day to day of life.

A relationship changes after a baby. All of a sudden we are all consumed with someone else’s needs. They do come first, we bathe them, feed them, dress them, cuddle them, wipe them…..after a day like that, we are literally all touched out.

Throw hormones into the mix, and a lot of women simply don’t mind if they have sex or not. Some feel they could go forever without it again. I felt this way too. After I stopped breastfeeding my second little, my hormones crashed, and i could never see myself being intimate again. It wasn’t “normal” but maybe it is?

In order to build a healthy relationship, physical intimacy has to be part of it. It is most important to keep the connection with your other half. It gives you your identity back, and not that of a mom.

Yes, you are a mom, but you are also You!

So what can we do?

How can we be intimate in this period of babies and childhood, in this season of life?

Here’s some ideas to help.

1. Schedule Sex– I know I know, this is soooo unromantic right? A couple of years ago I created the term “sexy Saturday” I didn’t tell my husband at first, as I didn’t want him thinking that I had to schedule it. But I did. I had to psyche myself up for it. That’s ok! 90% of sex for women is psychological. I soon told him what I was doing, and he laughed, but he is fully supportive (obviously!) Scheduling sex is better than no sex at all. (I’m talking to you, who hasn’t had sex in months)

2. Believe in yourself- wait what? So you have a few extra pounds since having kids, or maybe you have a c-section scar, perhaps you hate the way you look. I will say, your partner is not looking at the bad bits. I don’t know of any man who would turn down sex. Period. You project your problems with your body on him, but that’s just it, they’re your problems. You have history together, you’ve created life together, and he loves you. Turn the lights off if you have to, but don’t not do it because of the way you feel.

3. Set the mood for Sexy Saturday. There are a lot of essential oils that can help with everything from making you excited, to helping him last longer, to helping you achieve your goals (wink wink) Why not put some in your diffuser as a hint to him that you’re willing and ready.

Here’s just a few:

Sensation massage oil- which contains Ylang ylang, a

known aphrodisiac, was made specifically for intimacy. Why not use it for a massage to set the mood.

Cypress oil – This woodsy oil is for blood circulation. You can use it to spice up your evening!

Ylang Ylang – Increases libido in women, and men tend to respond to the sent on their women.

Sclaressence – A hormone supporting oil for women- healthy oestrogen levels can help with getting you in the mood.

Valor – This oil blend helps with confidence and courage! Who doesn’t need a little extra help in that department?

So, get your courage and your sex life back, if you need help with the oils, I’m your lady! Happy Valentines Day!

Valerie Fowler is a wife, a mom of two boys, and Young Living Essential Oils distributor. She helps people detox their homes, and create a better life using essential oils. For more info, or to buy oils:

FB: essentialoilsladyuk