A Mothers Reflection

28 Aug


This is me, ‘Claire Louise’ daughter, sister, friend, blogger, mother of three… A Human Being!

Yes, this isn’t my most flattering picture, in fact I look a mess, but that’s not the point I’m trying to make here!

A year back I wouldn’t have dared post this image of me looking so worse for wear. But this weekend all that changed!

Little man had a meltdown, his first in a good few weeks.This meant it was a big one… Though huge is a better word to describes it! What with the looming return to school, little sleep and a whole host of other issues, he exploded and did so in a deadly fashion.

It was little sister who was his target and he hit the balls eye with her every time. I by this point had become a woman close to breakdown and as I saw him mid air, ready to inflict a karate style fly kick aimed at his unsuspecting sister, I finally lost it.

Flying of the opposite sofa I wrapped my arms around his waist and as I pulled him back we fell to the ground. He flipped, went ballistic, angry doesn’t seem a strong enough word. Little man does this certain facial expression which consists of him sticking the tip of his tongue out as he bites down on it. When I see this I know his now capable of going to far! His totally unpredictable and this scares me.

I was right… He went mental, trashing and hitting out at all in his way! Alice-Sara and the littlest tot had by now escaped into the garden and as I watched the mother of all melt downs unfold, it was now my turn to lose my cool! By this point I was screaming, swearing and bombarding him with orders mainly consisting of “Get out of here right now!” He throw some pretty nasty insults my way too and I’d just about heard “I don’t want you as a mum” one to many times!

“I hate you #%*+##” he screamed while throwing himself at me.

“Well I don’t much like you, maybe you should go find some place else to live” I roared!

As soon as the words had left my mouth I wanted to take them all back. I’d lost control and responded through anger, something I know doesn’t work with little man. Well, at least the shock had stopped him in his tracks but only because he had turned and gone running up the stairs. As his door slammed shut with an almighty thud, I felt my legs buckle from beneath me and I dropped to the ground in a messy, unhinged fashion.

Yes, I cried… I cried for reasons of anger, tiredness, frustration, hurt and regret! My words had now left me feeling like the worse parent in the world! Although yes, this was a bad meltdown, I have actually dealt with a thousand others worse! Ones that literally had me pulling chunks of hair from my head in pure frustration…. Why had I lost my cool now, today… This time?

The little man was now deadly silent, I could hear his siblings giggling as they jumped up and down on the trampoline. I knew little man did wrong and regardless of his Aspergers he needed to learn how to regulate his emotions and therefore control his temper. But I still needed to apologise for what I had said simply because this would be the only thing now on his mind, he would be questioning my reaction without having any consideration to what caused it! His part in it all will mean little because despite the fact my words had hurt him emotionally, he would still never relate the two, and it was my job to remind him of this!

I left him for a while… There would be no point me speaking to him when his in any type of highly emotional, angry state, nothing registers. I sat back on the sofa, picked up my iPhone and sent a tweet announcing my failed moment in parenting. I wasn’t looking for sympathy, I just wanted to tell people what I’d done. I guess I wanted some one to tell me to pull my parenting socks up, but they didn’t…

I got lots of tweets everyone reminding me that despite being a mum to a boy with Aspergers, I was also a human-being with feelings too. Yes, yes… I did know this, yet when your in that situation I’m in, you forget to remind yourself of such a thing! You’re to busy punishing yourself.

I thought about this for awhile before going upstairs to speak to the little man in-order to apologise for my hurtful words while somehow highlighting to him that what he did was wrong too! I also wanted to give him an important reminder on “how his words hurt me in a similar way to how mine hurt him”.

I knocked on the door, he didn’t answer but I could hear him sobbing so with that I open the door and sit on the bed beside him. I told him I’m sorry and explain in the best way I can that my words were those said through anger. I then tried my best to get him to see how his actions leave me and other family members feeling hurt too. I gave him a hug and come back downstairs.

After that I found him a sleep on the bedroom floor… The meltdown did have some benefits, it drains all the excess energy he has. We both hadn’t slept for a few nights and I can only wish that joining him was an option. However with two more little monsters in the garden, it wasn’t!

A few hours had passed, I had made dinner and was now escaping in a bid for this beautifully inviting bubble bath that was all ready and waiting for me. Only it was once I was in the bathroom that I suddenly caught sight of my own reflection. And it was the image above that I saw staring back at me. Yes, it was now clear that I’d walked about the house for the past few hours sporting a style that pretty much resembled that of Kung foo panda!!!

I then did something strange… I got my iPhone and captured that messy reflection of mine before finally sharing it with the world.


Because although I knew this was one of those days… The type you wish hadn’t come about, I also knew tomorrow would be better!

But there was something else I knew too…

I knew there would be someone else, another child like Little man on the autism spectrum, experiencing a meltdown to one of a similar degree. Another normally “together” mother, who like me suddenly loses it and then kicks her own backside for hours on end all because of such blunder. I knew that somewhere, someplace a mother like me would be stood looking in a mirror with a reflection that tells that of the same story.

It was for these reasons I posted my unhinged mental looking picture. In the hope that one day you would find it, relate to it and smile at it!

Tomorrow is another day, a better brighter day. That much I can promise you.

17 Responses to “A Mothers Reflection”

  1. Beth September 10, 2012 at 9:20 am #

    Claire thank you for this post. Thank you for reminding me that a) other people experience what I experience as it is a lonely world with my 2 aspie kids some days.b) That occasionally not being ‘super mum’ and handling the punches, offensive, hurtful comments, hits, bites , kicks, is actually a sign of being human and not of being a complete failure. This was me on Saturday, after being a punch bag for over a week daily. On a good day when logic is in place rather than exhaustion and pure raw emotion, I can help my children’s meltdowns with compassion and understanding…. but Saturday was a bad day and I was fed up of being hurt, of my son not being able to grasp hurting Mummy was wrong and I wanted to know what it was like, just for a brief minute, what it is like to have a child that shows affection to their mum- neither of mine do, not really. Then I felt guilty for being so self pitying when my son was clearly struggling and angry at myself for even having that thought and fed up of being tired and hurt and drained and 1001 other things and I ranted…. like a terrible ranting monster was unleashed on my son. He was fine and I apologised and it clearly hasn’t affected him…. i am finding it hard to forgive myself 2 days later:( Gavin Bollard, your reply made me cry , great plopping tears as it made me realise that if nothing else i hope both my children can look back and see that even if mum didn’t get it quite right 100% of the time, I hope they know that I tried and that I am always here for them no matter what and I hope the ‘love gets through.’ Take care, Beth x

  2. Jay September 7, 2012 at 9:35 am #

    Thank you

  3. rebeccabeesley September 6, 2012 at 8:40 pm #

    All I can say is THANK YOU! (and some days that is definitely me too). x

  4. Jennifer September 6, 2012 at 6:56 pm #

    that someone else was me last week! Thank you for sharing. We do our best and then that one time you shout back stays in your head for a long time afterwards.

  5. Benedicte September 6, 2012 at 6:50 pm #

    Been there, done that, cried too. It is GOOD to read that we are not alone. Yes, those awful words left your mouth (and mine). Of course, if your little man is anything like my Eldest, he said some pretty horrendous things too and neither you nor I are immune to hurt. But you (and I) apologised. Hopefully we showed them that although we too can lose our tempers, we can make things better, and so can they…

  6. Benedicte September 6, 2012 at 6:48 pm #

    Reblogged this on Simple Tangles and commented:
    This is Clare. But this is also Me. Although we feel desperately alone in these moments, she tells us we are not by speaking one of them…

  7. Shaunna September 6, 2012 at 6:46 pm #

    thank you…

  8. wenifred September 4, 2012 at 11:44 pm #

    I am grateful for this inspirational post, as it reminds me of the hope we can bring to others just by sharing our true, human selves. Thank you.

  9. http://netbuddytoptips.blogspot.co.uk/ August 30, 2012 at 9:55 am #

    wonderful post. Thanks for sharing

  10. Roxy Rolla August 29, 2012 at 9:32 pm #

    Well, you just made me feel a whole lot better because yes, two days ago I had just about the same breakdown with almost the same words exchanged. I appreciate how you tell your story so truthfully, because after going through a move to a new town a week and a half ago, I felt I had no one to call and nobody to relate to what I was dealing with. I sobbed as if my heart would break in two, and I haven’t done that in quite some time. Now, if only I had a picture so we could compare…

  11. lisalumleyh@hotmail.com August 29, 2012 at 8:06 pm #

    Just read this after dealing with 3rd major aspy meltdown of the day. Can’t say I dealt with the 3rd one all that well either – we’re only human. Thanks for reminding me of that – and I’m glad I don’t have any make up on!

  12. Katrina Roach August 29, 2012 at 9:22 am #

    It was her DVD player I was warning her about. It was 10pm on a school night.

  13. Katrina Roach August 29, 2012 at 9:19 am #

    I know how you feel. My 17yohad a meltdown two weeks ago when she thought i was taking it instead of hearing a 10 minute warning. I had a stratch on my wrist. She hurt herself when she held her DVD player into her body. Without me touching her head, she give herself 2 bruised her eyes, a bruised cheek and a stratched face from the struggle.

  14. Gavin Bollard August 29, 2012 at 1:56 am #


    That was an amazing post which speaks volumes about what our mothers (mine particularly) had to go through with us growing up. It’s incredible to hear it from the mother’s point of view because as a child, I was just like your little man and as an adult, I’m a dad – which means that I don’t have the same sort of heartbreaking challenges that a mother has.

    I know that it’s probably no consolation and that you probably won’t ever get a proper apology but maybe this will help. I often think of my mother and what I put her through. There are so many things that I wish I hadn’t done and so many ways in which I hurt her.

    I’m living with those memories for the rest of my life.

    There are so many things that I want to say sorry for but I’m terrified to bring them up in case they open old wounds. Those young adult and teenage years are so long ago and our relationship is so good now but I still can’t bring myself to say it.

    My mother was a hero for putting up with the things that she did and for standing by me when I needed her most – even when I couldn’t understand that I needed her.

    One day, I’m sure that your little man will find himself looking back with the same mix of admiration and guilt but in the meantime, I’m glad that you have been able to find some positives in this experience.

  15. Sandra Cowie August 28, 2012 at 9:25 pm #

    I work with children who have Aspergers and Autism. You have just given me a very powerful reminder of how incredibly important a child’s family are. I think this shows how strong you are as a mother. Sometimes I encounter parents who don’t care about their child and don’t want to participate in their SLT therapy. You show in this how much you do care. X

  16. sleeplessinnewcastle August 28, 2012 at 4:48 pm #

    Claire your strength and resolve must be tested on a daily basis which is something most parents will understand but not to a degree that ‘special families’ like ours are.
    You showed a single solitary moment of ‘weakness’ which is not weakness at all, it is just being human. Everybody will have days where they aren’t on the top of their game and a lot more people lose it for a lot less than what you will be dealing with as well. I commend you for taking the photograph because you will have a reminder the next time that you have one of these moments and realise that it is ok, life goes on and you will be stronger the next day and the day after.
    I love reading your blog and it is one of the places I go to when I feel the need to ‘connect’ to another ‘special’ parent.
    All the best and many positive thoughts are heading your way.

  17. romanianmuminlondon August 28, 2012 at 3:47 pm #

    Oh hon. All I can say is big hugs to you xxx

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