Tuesday, May 10, 2016

teething pains

Forgive me for I was wrong...teething really is serious business.

I've said it once and I'll say it again, mothering the third time 'round continues to surprise me. You see, teething was never much of a drama for Che and Poet. Sure there was a bit of whinging, some finger gnawing and a low-grade temperature or two but it was nowhere near the experience we've had over the past week. Percy is currently cutting four teeth; his gums are red and swollen and if he's not on my hip he's pulling at my skirt and throwing his head back in pain, simultaneously whimpering and howling. It's loud and persistent and unsettling. Of course, it's just a matter of biding time, administering panadol and using this, this and this to ease the agony. But you know what helped the most? A facewasher, dipped in chamomile tea and placed in the freezer for an hour or so. A friend suggested it a while back and it was one of those remedies that came to me during witching hour when my skirt was being tugged and my patience had expired.

Recalling this advice, at such a dire moment, got me thinking about socialising in motherhood - how important it is, how rare it is. For the first time in my almost nine years of motherhood, I catch up with a gaggle of mums each week for coffee. We all have kids at Montessori but coincidentally, I met each and every one of them at pre-natal yoga. We often arrive at the cafe slightly bedraggled and in need of caffeine but within the confines of our group we find a sense of camaraderie and understanding that is completely free of judgement. We are all in the throes of motherhood with babies on our hips, preschoolers testing boundaries and kids navigating the schoolyard. We spend a lot of time in the car, a lot of time stepping over toys and far too little time sleeping. We're in it together and it feels good - to the core - to chat, moan, laugh and, sometimes, cry.

Lately I've needed that weekly catch-up more than ever. Moving house really took its toll; the exhaustion crept up on me last week and here I sit, with boxes still awaiting my attention and a ridiculously large washing pile looming from the laundry. Just this morning Poet thought she'd get her craft on and promptly made a paper trail that runs from the bedroom to the kitchen and out to the front balcony.

It's messy, this stage of motherhood. And I feel, more than ever, that I'm chasing my tail. But over the past few weeks I've also come to realise the importance of acknowledging the small achievements. Dinner on the table by five? Done! Kitchen cleaned? Great! Children asleep by 7:30? That was a good day!

There's a lot to be said for setting your goals at a realistic level. 


  1. I have a 6 yr old, 5 yr old, and 2 yr old. One has mild Cerebral Palsy. We have just opened a bakery. I also work part time. Between the school/day care runs, Doctor and therapy appointments, sickness, bakery hours, running a business, and having to actually look presentable for work I'm completely floundering. Luckily I'm from a large family and have my Aunts checking in on me: "Are they clean? Are they fed? Are they rested? Have they been read too and cuddled lots? Then you're winning. Plait your hair, wash your face and go have a cuppa in the sun. The house can wait." The washing will be waiting a while I fear! ;)

  2. Sounds so familiar, my eldest (3yrs) old breezed through teething, she would wake up and have a new tooth and I'd be like when did that arrive, such a strong determined one with pain tolerance outta this world, where my littlest is a sensitive soul and teething for her wakes her in agony, so I will give the tea on the washer a go-thank you!
    Our mothers grouped formed from pre natal yoga too, since then I think everyone is onto their 2nd and 3rd babies. Motherhood alone is tough but when you throw a group of mothers together, judgement is left at the door and support is found knowing that the washing hasn't been touched for a bit and well the iron hasn't made it out in a few years but hey ironing is over rated! It's good to know we all aren't alone. X

  3. I carried River for 4 days in a hug a bub when he was cutting his 2 year old molars. Fortunately I was able to just surrender to cuddling him through it, everything else can wait but if the washing is really getting to you I suggest going to the laundry mat and using the big washer and the big dryer and getting it all done in one go! That is a treat I give myself sometimes. A treat! lol xo

  4. When my boy went through a bit of a rough time with teething (though we mostly got lucky with him I'll admit) a friend told me to run to our local awesomely-kinda-hippie-grocery-store to get "Kids Gum-Omile oil" ... it has clove in it which dentists sometimes use as an analgesic. I have to say that it worked wonder!! I've just sent a friend who called for advices with her teething baby to get it. I even used it a few month later when it was my turn to struggle with a bad tooth pain, I used a lot more on my gum since the one I had was for kids but I was amazed at the relieve! I ended up having to let go of my tooth, the pain was real! I so hope your move will go smoothly and you'll soon get to rest, a little. xx Benedicte www.happy-bandits.com

  5. This little poem has been hanging in my aunts house for as long as I can remember and I've always loved it:

    Cleaning and scrubbing can wait 'til tomorrow,
    For babies grow up we've learned to our sorrow.
    So quiet down cobwebs, dust go to sleep;
    I'm rocking my baby and babies wont keep.

  6. I loved reading this I have a 14 month old son I'll definitely be trying the wash washer and camomile tea method as teething is making me crazy mixed with the house work and building a new house I think I'm going a little crazy but thank god for my mummy friends for keeping me on check with everything, aren't they a god send...

  7. Percy is all the sudden looking so much more grown up. He is definitely leaving the baby stage in the dust.


© 2014 Jodi Wilson. You may not take images or content from this site without written permission.