So I suffer with anxiety disorder and it really affects me and sometimes my children, although I try not to let it affect my children. It’s impossible or seemingly to hide it from them. On Saturday I woke up already in a foul mood from tiredness and the thought of going to rugby again with the kids. I wanted to do something different and get them out to enjoy themselves.
I was asking in admin chat (I admin for the McParents Page go check it out it’s amazing) what I could do with the kids. All the girls were like come see me joking, or so they thought haha. Well kasi only lives an hour and a half drive from me so I was seriously contemplating getting the train up to her for the day. Until I realised my anxiety around trains and that huge, god damn, mother fucking gap, with five kids one of which in a buggy. I mean what if the buggy fell down it? What If one of the girls fell down it? What order was a supposed to get five kids off and lift them over it without one being snatched from the platform or running on the track? What if the doors shut before I could get all five off? What if the kids got restless on the train and we get kicked off? How was I supposed to take one to the toilet and watch the other four at the same time? The thought of it was stressing me out hugely so I gave up on the idea. I was talking to Chris late about it who then offered to drop me off, but said he couldn’t get us until Sunday as he had rugby and a night out with the lads planned after. I asked kas if there was a B and B nearby and by that point I was adamant I was going and the kids would have a lovely time as well as I would so this is how our weekend started. I invited myself to kasi’s, bearing in mind me and kasi have been Facebook friends for about a year and both admin for McParents so talk daily but have never actually met in person.
So yeah we had decided I was going with all five kids. I felt I needed to check a million and twelve times that she was sure about me and my small army if disobedient terrors could invade her house, she insisted. Next thing I know , before I’ve been stepped foot out of bed chris is rounding the kids up and getting them dressed and they’re sleep over stuff ready. He had to be at rugby at 1pm so the three hour round trip had to be soon. By 9.15 just 45 minutes after these plans had been made we are piling the kids into the car. I’d like to say getting them ready was a simple task, but no the poor sods didn’t even have time to think about what we were doing because they were just getting request after request. “We are going on an adventure can you get dressed” “quick brush your hair” “who can get their toothbrush the quickest” we were met with the usual G couldn’t possibly leave anything behind so we ended up having a stand off trying to get her in the car. Which ended with me telling her I would buy her a treat if she just got in the car (while screaming in my head why the fuck won’t she do as she is asked and then telling myself off for being manipulated by a five year old) .
So we are in the car on the way, we rushed out so quickly Me and chris have not eaten (the kids have) and I’m doing my make up in the car…. every women in the world has done this at some point don’t try to say you haven’t! B is dressed in the best accessories and actually looks amazing although miserable and completely non excited for our adventure.
On our way my anxiety starts to creep in slightly. I’ve never met this person or her children, I’ve never been to this area, she is effectively a stranger to myself and my children. Chris re assures me he is with me and we will be fine I’ve spoken to this lady almost every day for as long as I can remember he ends it with plus you’ve got to get along as if you don’t like each other in person I’m not driving all the way back to get you (in a jokey way obviously) and it lightens the mood. We play old music all the way and are reminded by A that “I’ve not heard these songs you must be really old” … cheers kid , I’ve raised , fed, clothed you and you come out with shit like that! Lol. The car journey was pretty straight forward we were looking for motorbikes, sheep, cows and horses to keep the kids occupied until the smaller three fell asleep.
So we arrive in westbury. Have you ever been to westbury? It’s like the middle of nowhere. It’s almost like we have traveled through miles and miles of countryside and someone has decided to plonk a town in the middle of it. I guess that’s what people think about where I live though to be fair. I have absolutely no idea where I am, but I’m here now it’s tough, no going back now.
We arrive at kasi’s, wake the kids up and I go to investigate before we get them out of the car, just incase she’s secretly a dirty old man that’s been grooming me for the last fuck knows how long and only wants to see me so she can kidnap me (I wouldn’t blame her I am pretty fucking awesome) . I’m met with a hug and a massive smile (and she’s definitely not a dirty old man) I automatically relax a little.. phewwwww . Obviously that’s not to say she won’t kidnap us at some point in the next 24 hours but to be fair she’d give my kids back to chris within a couple of hours and is welcome to keep me until I’m rescued so I could have a nice break from the terrors and maybe a decent night sleep. We head back to the car and she says hi to chris and all the kids one by one, trying to figure out which ones which as they’re all tiny and very similar looking (bar the boy child obviously). R is so cute she puts out her hand and says I’m Rj pleased to meet you and shakes hands with kasi. We head into the house, four of the kids very quiet and then we have R who runs straight into the house to investigate , she is running around like we’ve fed her five bags of skittles, up and down the stairs , past kasi’s kids not even paying attention to them but taking in everything and figuring out her way around ( I genuinely worry about this child and her lack of care about strange places and people). The others cling to me while chris says goodbye, I have the boy child in my arms , B clinging to one leg, G clinging to the other and A refusing to stand more than half a foot away from me. I’m trapped in a child net And being suffocated from lack of space and my own air. I say hello to kasi’s four children and her partner while trying to escape the children who have completely forgotten everything they know about personal space. After about half hour B spots the pool and runs off to investigate, then A figures out that F (kasi’s oldest) has a laptop and G stays close but lets go of my leg (good job I’m sure it was close to falling off). Realisation hits we have forgotten A’s glasses and so she can’t see properly (whoops) and Snuck hers in the car door (double whoops). Ah well they’re only glasses and who needs to be able to see properly anyway, not like we can pop home and get them haha. An hour or so passes and the kids are now all outside. Moaning because the pool isn’t completely full yet and children have no idea on waiting at all. So now me, kas and poor wayne (who was basically told a few hours ago we were coming) have 9 kids between us. Me and kas get on amazingly (bloody good job really because if we didn’t it could of been an awkward night and couple of days) and the kids are now playing. G as usual is doing her own thing, while B and D (kasi’s Youngest), A and F , and R and Ru (one of kasi’s boys) all group off and play. C (kasi’s other boy is doing his boy thing and not wanting to associate with the girls haha. Although all of them are in the garden playing in their groups keeping on still about the pool.
Wayne heads to the shop and when he gets back he lets the kid access the pool, given the amount they’ve kept on you’d think they’d jump staright in… wrong they all push footed around it because it was cold and R even went as far as asking them to put some hot in haha. When they eventually get changed and start to get in A, F and C all getnin and play, RU and R start to get in and then change their minds , B says she wants to get in so I put her in , the scream she let off when she got in instantly informed us she didn’t mean it and now wants to be out . D is playing on the ladder and G is showing no signs of getting in at all and the boy child is still clinging to me. Me and kasi are amused at the fact they’ve kept on so badly and now are chickening out. The day goes on and D and B start argueing over who gets to stand on the ladder. We probably shouldn’t of it we look on wondering who’s going to win. Turns out they’re both strong willed buggers and end up both playing on it haha.
Then I get parent of the fucking year award , I forgot the boy holds anti histamines and he is swelling from who knows what. I’m a twat I truly am. Luckily for me kasi has anti histamines so we give him some and eventually swelling starts coming down. Good job as we were seriously contemplating calling out of hours of it carried on. (This my friends is life with an allergy child) poor Ru also has allergies bless him hence why kasi has the meds we needed.
Dinner time was interesting, we have a BBQ I have safe stuff for me and The boy child. The kids love it all outside with their food until the boy child goes out and kasi finds herself sweeping the concrete because of the cheese everywhere. In the end we find it safer to take the boy inside he is not amused by this but hey we had to keep him safe. As you can imagine by this time with nine kids running around we are mentally exhausted and so we crack open the prossecco (yes while the kids are up, judge away we needed that shit). We had a glass while the kids are playing and then get a text. “Knock knock” it’s Vicki and her other half with baby M . Vicki is another admin on mcparents again we’ve not met. So we are having like a giant stranger meeting. They stay for a bit and chat and we moan at her for not stopping to collect us wine. I think it’s the first time we’ve felt like adults yet been surrounded by kids in a long time. Vickis partner is throwing M in the air playing with him he’s giggling away (you know as dads do with their kids). Oh there’s my anxiety again my heart is in my throat even though it’s not that high and M is perfectly safe. Chris does this all the time and every time I want to kick him in the bollocks as hard as I can because it scares the shit out of me. Now obviously that’s completely unacceptable to do to someone I’ve just met especially given the fact he’s not doing anything wrong, it’s not dangerous and I’m massively over reacting. So instead I divert my attention to Vicki kasi and the prossecco I’m nursing like a newborn baby. So yeah we are chatting and having a laugh the kids all playing and it’s amazing. These people that I’ve been speaking to for as long as I can remember and only met in the last few hours are awesome and it’s like we’ve always been good friends. Then Vicki, Guy and M have to go. We say goodbye and We tell the kids that they can watch a film before bed this is the quietest they’ve been all day.
Then the most important part of the day…. bedtime. It’s got to be worked like a military operation. We decide that F and A should top and tail on the top bunk in the girls room, that B and G should top and tail on the bottom of the boys bunk bed , C and Ru should top and tail on the top bunk of the boys room, R and D should top and tail on the bottom bunk in the girls room and the boy child in the travel cot in the lounge with me . Seems like a good idea right ? Pahahahahah if anyone believes that shot worked they’re stupid .. just as me and kasi were when we thought it would be a good idea.
It was not a good idea and we eventually stick the TVs on in both rooms. Where R, D, F and A all get on the top bunk and B and G the bottom and the boys in their room. The boys are quiet and settled the girls not so much. After an hour and a half of alternating going up and down to try settle them each time coming down and muttering “fucking kids your turn” to each other we decide to move B into the boysbottom bunk where she goes straight to sleep, and have R and G on the bottom in the girls room. D goes to bed with Wayne so she settles then is moved to the bed with B. So the boys fall asleep and two girls are settled. We put the boy child into bed and head to the garden for a much needed fresh glass of wine and a fag. When we get in he’s asleep so we have a little victory party because we’ve got five out of nine asleep and in our eyes that’s a win :). However we still have four very tired but very awake girls and now limited patience. So we go up turn the telly off and give them a lecture on sleep and how much they need it, did they listen? Hell no! They’re all too excited we give up and leave them to it. Knowing we are going to have some very tired small people the next day but we’ve run out of energy and don’t have enough wine to warrant all the calories we will burn running up and down the stairs. We head back to the garden we are chatting and learning a lot about each other and it’s lovely, the wine is also lovely , and the haribo. 11pm and finally its quiet everyone’s asleep and we’ve only actually had two glasses of wine each so that’s pretty good going. We have another glass or two and enjoy each others company under the stars . It’s like a blind date mum style . I can’t help but laugh watching kasi tirelessly blowing up an air bed like it’s a balloon , it takes her ages and is hilarious I would of offered to help but I was finding watching far more amusing. 1am we get to bed because.. well frankly once I start talking about stuff and I’ve had a few glasses of wine I generally don’t shut up until I pass out.
4am …. yes four fucking am! We’ve had about three hours sleep and the boy child wakes demanding the milk makers so I put him on the air bed with me and feed him, the. I hear a cry from upstairs but can’t figure out what child it is it’s either B or D , Part of me wants to go help, the other , realistic part thinks it’s impossible if I leave the boy child he will scream, if I take him he will wake everyone … I’m stuck. It goes quiet. I think thank fuck for that they’ve settled themselves back off. I was wrong ahah although they’d settled the morning came and kasi informed me both B and D woke and neither of us know which child woke the other. I felt terrible (for a couple seconds at least). The kids are hyper like they’ve had a really good nights sleep and we are exhausted walking mombies. The kids having breakfast is carnage, they’re all eating while the boy child is making his usual cereal carpet and I’m following him around trying to pick everything up until after about half hour I give up and decide I’ll do it when they’re done. They’re all running around and so so loud and me and kasi are playing along with them all smiles and giggles while wondering why the fuck we thought it’d be a good idea to have 9 kids in one house over night and Wayne is hiding upstairs Ive a feeling we’ve sent him over the edge. So we start a challenge “if you can all get dressed super fast we can go to the park” . Chris calls he’s on his way to get us so he’s now coming to the park with us. I get a few of mine dressed while A and R sort themselves out and kasi is chasing D around trying to get her sorted. B then arrives naked in the lounge like she’s lived here forever haha. I get her dressed me and kasi actually seriously contemplate a delivered full English, but we decide instead we will try tame this zoo of children and then I’ll go shop. A lot of muttered swear words, threats of no park and nakedness later. I head to the shop. Get bacon , eggs, haribo, and chocolates for kasi. I’ve made myself at home so I come back stick the oven on and start making breakfast the kids are all playing outside (thank fuck because they’re so fucking loud) and we eat and clean up. Chris arrives and I’m relieved the Velcro child wants him so my arms get a rest, until he wants boob again. So I feed him and he decides he wants to still feed but get off my lap. Kasi finds it highly amusing that he’s crawled off my lap nipple still in mouth and I’m bent on a c shape , with him attatched to my boob , stood up, trying to make sure he doesn’t rip my poor nipple off! I am not amused I don’t bend this way for a start haha. I would pop a picture here but kasi wasn’t quick enough haha. Chris loads the car at this time cause it’s easier although I’m sure he’s thinking of a quick escape with the boy child.
We round the kids up and by round them up I mean we shout right kids five minutes to get out the door or we aren’t going and head to the park. (I think we are all surprised they listen). I say goodbye and apologise to Wayne for the mayhem we’ve caused in his house this weekend, although I did offer to make him bacon and I’m sure he’s not human as he declined. Kasi said the park was just round the corner, kasi is a fucking liar! It seemed like forever walking with 9 feral kids, 7 running where they wanted , one in a wheelchair and one in the buggy. They were picking flowers , playing it, hiding behind trees, alternating stoping every three seconds . Finally we got to the park (I’m sure it’s like 2019 at this point). Then we realise we forgot the drinks Wayne made (wonderful parents aren’t we) so chris goes to the shop and the kids go play. This my friends is when I realised why the mums I hate, that use soft play as glorified baby sitters are actually really fucking clever. Me and kasi sit on a bench doing nothing .. that’s right nothing and the kids are all off playing , happy and getting along (proof right there miracles can happen) and it’s amazing, we can see them, they’re having fun, nobody is crying and we are relaxing. At this point I’ve completely forgotten I’ve got severe anxiety and am just happy, happy the kids are happy, happy I’m not shouting at them to be careful, happy I have let them have that little bit of independence and mostly happy I can relax while they play.
We stay at the park for a good few hours and the kids have a great time . Before we leave we think it’s a good idea to try get a picture of all nine of the kids. It turns out We are fucking masters of good ideas that are actually shit ideas. If anyone’s wondering what it’s like to get a photo of nine kids in a park this about sums it up.
That’s right it’s fucking impossible, we even bribed them with ice cream and still couldn’t get a decent picture of them all looking and smiling. So we give up and head for the (what seems like a million and twelve miles) walk back. B decides she needs a wee and can’t possibly wait (fucking wonderful timing) the toilets are shut so we do the ever lady like thing is peeing in a bush. Then Her and D think it’s highly amusing to run around outside the park making me and kasi chase them until we eventually catch them. We get to the shop on the way back and the terror on chris face when he realises we were gunna take them all in to get ice cream is hilarious…. yes even if we didn’t get a picture of them all smiling and looking we got a picture of their individuality and personalities and that’s much more amazing than any other photo so they’re still getting ice cream. So he tells us to walk on and goes it alone into the shop (bastard why didn’t I offer to do that) we tame the beasts , well sort of poor kasi has to carry D while pushing Ru in the wheelchair because D is devestated we aren’t all going in the shop (fair point we did say we would) until we get back. Poor Wayne , poor , poor Wayne , is met again with a tribe of children he thought were going home in his house where he is trying to lay skirting. We stay for a short while then take a good half hour to say out goodbyes and head home. It’s an hour and a half drive home and within half hour more miracles happen. All five of my kids fall asleep in the car. I try to sleep but am sad we are leaving despite it being complete and utter mayhem and feeling like me or kasi could be sectioned at any given point we have had an amazing time and will miss Kasi, Wayne and the kids. We have had an utterly amazing time and myself and the kids have made some amazing forger friends in complete strangers that live miles away. I had faced one of my biggest fears and come out the other side knowing I’m stronger than I think. Wether I could do it again with planning I’m not sure, but the fact I did it was a huge achievement and well worth it. The kids still five days later are asking when we can go back.
So all that is left is to say a huge thankyou from the bottom of my heart to Kasi, Wayne and the kids for opening up their home and lives to us and for showing me there is more to the world than my little safety conscious bubble that I surround myself and my children in. You are amazing truly amazing.
I hope you guys have enjoyed the read and if any of you suffer like I do I hope from this you get hope, you get strength and you realise even if it is spontaneous you can do anything if you want to enough.
Until next time .