If there’s one thing that I’ve learned more about over the past year it’s resilience.
I’ve always considered myself to be a pretty strong person, but what the last year has taught me is that when life throws you some serious curve balls, you are actually way tougher than you ever imagined.
I guess that it’s not until we are put under immense pressure that our level of resilience becomes tested. Cruising through life with a busy job, paying the mortgage and having an active social life isn’t exactly the most testing of circumstances in the grand scheme of things.
The toughest events by far that I’ve ever dealt with are losing family members, my dad, nan and grandpa – they were all extremely difficult times, naturally.
Yet going through a high-risk pregnancy and having a chronically sick baby is on a completely different level!
A baby is reliant upon it’s mother to survive, chronically sick or not, and any mother will agree that motherhood is a tough enough job in itself. Now that Finn has chronic kidney failure he needs round the clock care, this makes me his official carer. Nope, I did not see that one coming!!
Being a carer for your own baby sounds weird, I know. Essentially it means all the usual baby stuff, plus the various drugs, feeding tubes, miraculous vomit catching, machine operating, and constant hospital visits on top of that – which can often get quite overwhelming.
So how does one deal with this? I hear you thinking, and people say to me all the time “I honestly couldn’t cope! I don’t know how you manage it?”
Which often makes me stop and think… gosh, yeah it’s all pretty full on, how do I manage it???
And the answer I’ve come to is resilience.
Resilience is the ability to “bounce back” from stressful or challenging experiences. It involves being able to adapt to changes and approach negative events, sources of stress and traumatic events as constructively as possible.
Simply when your child needs you, you step up and do what needs to be done. Whatever it is. No questions asked. No challenge is too hard. You accept the challenges and find a way. And the more setbacks there are it becomes a bit easier each time. Because resilience makes you a tougher cookie today than you were the day before!
And it seems the apple didn’t fall too far from the tree with our Finn, he came out fighting and he’s a tough little bean too!!