I’m Not OK

I need a f***ing break.

I am writing this knowing that Mr C is taking both kids to GG’s (Great Grandma in case you were wondering!) tomorrow for the day. I love going there, GG and Auntie Claire are fantastic and I always really enjoy our visits (especially dinner!) but when I was unwell during the week Mr C suggested that I might want to stay home. As much as I am gutted to be missing a visit and I am actually feeling tons better, I just know that I need the day to myself.


When I was in my teens and very early twenties, although I wanted children I didn’t really think I was cut out for parenthood. Not that I thought I wouldn’t cope, just I didn’t think I had the temperament for it. Of course, most of us are more hot-headed and rash in our youths, something which seems to mellow with age, but I have just never really been great with empathy or patience, and have always found clingy, needy people disgustingly annoying. I sound like an awful person!! And I suppose there are parts of me that really are awful, but I have also learned from being a parent that for every part of me that is awful, there is greatness to balance it out. I am driven and determined, I am selfless beyond measure when it comes to the people I love (sometimes to my own detriment), and I make a mean cup of microwaved coffee!

Before Mr C and the kids, I had lived on my own completely for 8 years. As someone who has always loved their own company, I sometimes find it difficult these days not to miss the solitude of that. There are evenings that just the thought of having a conversation with anyone feels so mentally draining and I kind of dread it. I feel like it takes a lot out of me mentally sometimes to simply engage in basic human interaction, and silence and my own thoughts are a far preferable option.

I am lucky enough to know that Mr C knows me exceptionally well and won’t take any offence (I hope!) from this. It’s not the thought of interacting with anyone in particular which is the problem, it’s human interaction in general.

I know that I need a break when these feelings start creeping into the daytimes too. Somehow interaction with children comes so much easier to me (maybe I’m just really simple!), so when I start to feel even that becoming difficult I know, for the sake of my children and parenting I need to give myself a break.

I'm Not Ok

As Amelia hands me the fourth apple pip she has deliberately fished out of her apple declaring “I don’t want this one either” my brain begins to feel that familiar itchy feeling and I hear the words “Just put it in the bin, I’m not your slave” spew from my mouth. Not ok. I call her name and she shouts “What?” from the other room for the fiftieth time of the time despite me reminding her every time to say pardon, I hear myself

“What is wrong with you that this is not sinking in?”

Not ok. She’s not even three yet (end of March), and I know from experience that she will get it eventually; one day something will just click and we will never look back.

As I hand Amelia the Kindle and tell her sweetly that she can sit beside me in the bed and watch her programme (while Wills is napping) and I feel myself drifting off, snapped awake by the sound of my son laughing as he wakes up. What is wrong with me? It’s 4pm, I’ve slept in the middle of the day while my kid watches crap TV, and I’m not even sick. This shit is only acceptable when there’s a valid reason; child-induced sleep deprivation, being ill, etc.

I know that I need a break when I feel myself just going through the motions of every day, not even really registering what is going on around me. I feel my routines slip, I stumble through the days blindly finding no motivation or pleasure, and completing at best only the very basic of parenting tasks. I know that I need a break when I am displaying none of the qualities desirable in a half-decent parent.

In short, I become that shit 20-year-old who cannot register even the slightest feeling of empathy for others, finds malaise at every turn, is impeccably in tune with her personal angst, and spends most of her life hiding behind a book (phone these days because, back then they were nowhere near as entertaining), rolling her eyes and mumbling “whatever”.

Not ok.

I'm Not Ok

Tomorrow I will have my day (still totally gutted to be missing dinner) and I know that a day alone, no TV, no kids, no-one will allow me to recharge the brain cells, reflect a little,sort out the itchy feeling going on up there, tidy up my thoughts, and hell maybe I’ll even get some sleep! The day will do its thing and return me to the nearly-thirty-mum-of-two that I know I am, can, and should be. And in fact, just writing this down has already proven more than mildly cathartic.



  • The Mum Project

    Taking days off like this can be so therapeutic. I definitely need these days and had one a few weeks ago where I didn’t have the kids, didn’t have work, and could just do what I wanted to do. It was the nicest day of my life! Haha I’m exaggerating a bit but really I think we need to take these days seriously and make sure they’re booked in with the fam! Thanks for sharing with #stayclassymama!

    • Aleena Brown

      I totally agree! I don’t think I’d had a day since Wills was born, and I’m the first to tell people that I’m a better Mum when I get a break! I don’t know if it’s an introvert thing, or just a Mum thing, but a day of solitude just seems to clear out the cobwebs, and I always seem to be on fire for a good week or two afterwards!
      No joke – I bet it was the nicest day of your life! Screw all those other perfect days haha, that one wins haha!!xx

  • talkingmums1

    It can be so hard at times. I have many days like this and share many of your thoughts too. A bit of space will do you good, enjoy it, do whatever you feel you need to do. Be it sit on the couch watching tv, going for a walk, cooking…whatever makes you feel good x

  • Janine

    You’re totally not alone. I need a break too. This afternoon my three year old was sat on my lap and just kept touching me. My hair, my face and I started to get irrationally annoyed. I afterboonnnouedsked her to stop afterboonnnouedsked she just wouldn’t. Ok she was urposefully trying to wind me up but I still shouldn’t have told her to get off of me and leave me alone. The only break I ever get it when the kids are in bed afterboonnnouedsked nnoyed one times its gone 9 before they’re both asleep. This parenting thing is hard.


    • Aleena Brown

      This is so true, and even with supportive partners my kids will call me to do something for them when their dad is sat RIGHT NEXT TO THEM!!! And oh my goodness, I have been known to do that too! Amelia will sometimes just randomly cling to my face or neck, for example when I’m eating and it’s so hard not to snap “get off me” thanks for stopping by xx

  • cupcakemumma

    I totally get this feeling and I wish I had a day too they’re rare aren’t they?! I’m short tempered and quick to bite I prefer to go slow and just sink into my pit which isn’t possible with kids (or right) I try to be less snappy on low days and just take things slow, hope there’s no fighting etc! I hope your day to yourself helped and thanks for sharing #tuesdaytreasures

  • pinkpearbear

    I know exactly what you mean! I often reach burn out where I really can’t take anymore and I know that I need some time to myself. And that’s with having one in school and one in preschool a few mornings a week! Give yourself the day off and enjoy the peace. Thanks for being such an important part of the #bigpinklink

  • mummuddlingthrough

    It’s funny because I’m probably the polar opposite to you I thrive in company, but even I struggle sometimes to just ‘be still’ and zone out. We all need a break from time to time – enjoy yours and come back recharged xx
    Thanks for sharing with #coolmumclub

  • alifeinpracticeblog.com

    Oh my god, you are describing me! I have just had the worst day, my 4 yr old has been on a mission to back-talk, argue and disrespect everything I say! I really have felt so drained this evening I have been dreading tomorrow, but I’m so glad I’m not alone. I’m possibly going to get some alone time on Saturday so hopefully can recharge then! xx #stayclassymama

    • Aleena Brown

      I feel your pain!! Make the most of your time on Saturday, I hope you get to really enjoy ding whatever you choose, especially if what you choose to do is a big fat nothing haha!! xx

  • alisonlonghurst

    What a fabulously honest post! These can be hard to come by, as people are afraid of being judged and who can blame them, as there are so many judgers out there! I completely get what you are saying. I love a day to myself and when it comes to actually preferring to miss out on something you would normally enjoy, you know that it’s absolutely the right decision, or you will end up having a total meltdown and be no use to anyone. So, good for you. Do it more often! (When you can). Alison x #StayClassyMama

    • Aleena Brown

      Thank you so much for your lovely comment! It was hard to write, and to be honest with you there was probably more I could have said! But I think it’s o important for us to all to know that we all have both good and bad times, and that’s ok! Thanks for stopping by x

  • Lydia C. Lee

    Introverts recharge by being alone – it’s the company of others that drains you. It doesn’t mean you don’t love being around others, it just means you’re better and ready to do it again after a little solitude. Work it into your system…#Stayclassymama

  • angiemwebster77

    I could have written this ! I’m exactly the same, I had quite a big age gap (12 years) between having my kids and I really felt the loss of time to myself. It’s bloody hard being a mummy and a love the honest way you have written about it. Thanks for linking up with #TuesdayTreasures

  • savings4savvymums

    I can really relate to this. Me and the kids our by ourselves a lot, and i find it really hard to parent by myself at times. It is okay NOT to be okay. Honestly.

    • Aleena Brown

      Thank you so much for your comment, It’s good to know that we are not alone! I’m the same, on my own with the kids for most of the day 5-6 days a week, and it can get really draining. I feel so strongly after chatting to a few mums recently that we can all help to support each other, even it’s just saying “me too!” Thanks for stopping by xx

  • madmotherintheattic

    I can certainly relate to this post! I often trudge around looking at my feet and let my children watch Paw Patrol for half the afternoon, then give them reheated pasta for tea and collapse on the sofa when they go to bed, no energy for anything. My nearly three year old picks his nose and hands it to me, saying ‘that’s a sticky one’. This happens about four times a day. My baby throws Weetabix in my eyes and my 4 year old daughter told me yesterday, ‘Mummy, you make everyone sad.’ Awesome! So, it’s not just you – thanks for sharing x

  • The Greenwich Mummy

    This is something I could’ve written myself and exactly how I’d been feeling this week. I was going to post about it but felt too much like an awful person so I’m very glad that I now know I’m not the only mum out there that doesn’t feel okay 100% of the time. PS that meme pretty much sums me up for the last few months.. a whole day to recharge sounds amazing! 🙂 Manny xx

    • Aleena Brown

      It was quite nerve-wracking post to publish actually, because I worried about the same things as you, so I’m really glad also to know I’m not the only one! It ended up only being half of the day as I just couldn’t miss out on dinner haha! But having a good few hours to just be me this morning has really really helped. I’m glad you could relate. I’ve been saying to friends we should set up a mums club where we take it turns to have all the kids for a day each a month!xx

      • The Greenwich Mummy

        Aww I can imagine it must’ve been difficult! You’ve got pure courage and it’s really inspiring! I might have to publish mine (will definitely link your post in there!) 🙂

        Dinner with the whole family is lovely (my fave time of the day!) and the mums club idea sounds like heaven! Most of my friends are childless so not sure if they’d be up for it lol

        • Aleena Brown

          Aw thank you..! You definitely should, maybe if more of start talking, more mums will know they’re not alone…

          I have a similar problem, maybe we should set something up ourselves, reach out to local mums!x

          • The Greenwich Mummy

            That was my exact thought too! We definitely need to normalise it – I think as mums we get too good at covering our more vulnerable sides especially if it comes to our emotions and ability to cope with the stresses of parenting. 🙂

            Good idea! Maybe set up a group on meetothermums or similar sites? Just a thought 🙂 xx

          • Aleena Brown

            So true, we become amazing at ‘keeping up appearances’ don’t we?!

            Yes! I’m going to have a look into this in the morning after the nursery run!! I’ll keep you updated!!xx

  • Mindfump

    I wish more of us would open about not being ok. Really nice to see people being so honest and open. Really enjoyed this read… even though it chronicles a particularly glum period. I wish you best! Great post.

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