Changing Times

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The blog prompt over on BritMums this week asks what changes you have gone through this year and how they have made a difference in your life.


This prompt really got me thinking about the year our little family has been through and, whilst I know many people have been through a lot worse, it has been stressful. We've been saying virtually all year that we'd quite like 2011 to be over with now please!

Red Rose Daddy and I have been on something of a whirlwind since we met. It was just over three years ago and in that time I have moved back to my hometown to be near him, we got pregnant, bought a house and had Bud. As so many people have said, we haven't wasted any time! As Bud was born when we had only been together for 18 months, 2011 has been a year without anticipating one of those major life events. Things were supposed to settle down and we were looking forward to a much quieter year.

2011 opened with Red Rose Daddy taking voluntary redundancy. I was still on maternity leave so things were tight for a while. It was a while before he found work and he is still only on a temporary contract there.  It was lovely for him to have some time at home with Bud but it was an anxious and stressful time for us all.

In March Red Rose Daddy nipped to the supermarket for some milk and another car drove into the side of ours. The damage wasn't serious but the car was hit exactly where Bud would have been if he had been in the car and we were so relieved that he had gone to the supermarket on his own that night.

Within a couple of weeks of the New Year my Mum was hospitalised with a suspected heart attack. In the end it turned out to be an issue with her blood pressure but it was really terrifying to get that phone call telling me she had been rushed to hospital. She recovered quickly, thank goodness.

In February my lovely little nephew was born which was a high point. He is growing into a hilarious little boy with the most gorgeous blonde spiky mohican haircut. Unfortunately since then my Brother (his Daddy) and his girlfriend have been having all kinds of problems and their relationship has broken down. My nephews and their Dad are now living with my Mum and Dad and have had a year of upset and upheaval.

I was all set to return to work part-time in April. I was lucky because Red Rose Daddy's redundancy meant that we could afford for me to take the few extra months of unpaid maternity leave and I loved being able to stay with Bud until he was 13 months old but, 10 days before my return to work I was called into a meeting and found out that unless new contracts were awarded to us our project would close in July and we would be made redundant. We didn't get the contracts. We decided that I would go back full-time for the 4 months left and Bud was looked after by his Grandmother. I really would be hard pushed to think of another person I would rather leave him with so, again, I could see that I was lucky having childcare I could trust implicitly but I hated being away from Bud for so long. I was made redundant at the end of July and since then I have been a stay at home Mum. I have had a job, of some description or another, since I was 13 years old and have struggled to work out where I fit into the world now. I love being at home with my son and we have so much fun together but, financially, we have taken quite a hit so nice holidays and other luxuries are going to be put on the back burner for a little while. Starting this blog has been good therapy for me as it has given me an outlet to just be me, as I was at work.

The last few weeks have seen my 89 year old Grandmother have a serious fall and break her hip. She is still convalescing now. Obviously any accident at her age is really worrying, thankfully she is on the mend now and should be back in her own home soon.

So 2011 has not been a fun year for us all. We have had highlights - the aforementioned new nephew, a lovely holiday in Northumberland and, just last weekend, a terrific relaxing weekend in the Lake District to celebrate Bud's Aunt's birthday but we all feel a little downtrodden by this year and are hoping for better in 2012. New year, new start!

This post was written in response to the BritMums Blog Prompt.