Posted in mommyhood

Can you feel my love?

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“mommy can I sleep next to you tonight?”  Of course you can I said as I looked into those beautiful blue eyes of hers. Part of me wanted to hold you and never let go, part of me wanted to cry and part of me wanted to yell and scream.

Today had been a particularly stressful day as 7yo had her routine physical. She did really well until it was time to look in her throat. Suddenly without warning my happy little girl began to cry uncontrollably. “I remember what I wanted to talk to you about!” I said to the physician’s assistant as she tried to examine my daughter’s throat.

7yo is incredibly sensitive and will cry over sometimes what seems like nothing to us but is quite obviously something to her. I have mentioned before that I was cautiously watching her behavior as there have been times I have caught her with tears down her eyes and no explanation as to why. appearing to come out of nowhere, I have just seen my daughter cry.

As I explained to the practitioner what her behavior is or can at times be and how often it occurs we discuss the need for an evaluation from a counselor. She explains that 7yo most likely is having anxiety and she can help provide her with techniques to cope. The whole time I am holding back tears of my own thinking what if it is something more.

What if my fun, sweet, smart little girl has something more going on in her head. What if counseling is not enough. I know I shouldn’t go to worse case scenario but I am a nurse. This is what we do! prepare for the worst and hope for the best! Except the worse scares the living shit out of me! Can my child at 7yo be depressed? can it be even worse than that?

There are times that I just look at think Can she feel my love? She doesn’t say I love you to me and my husband and I don’t think she ever has. She can be cuddly but it is the very rare occasion. Her nails are short and I rarely have to cut them because she picks at them, which is undoubtedly a nervous habit.

Does she know how truly amazing she is? She is so smart and beautiful. She reads at a fifth grade level and is quite the artist! I love displaying her art on any surface I can find. Can she feel how proud I am of her and the little person she is becoming?

Does she know that I would do anything to keep her safe? Does she feel safe? She can talk for hours about her pokemon characters or tell me about what she did that day, but when I ask her about her feelings she can’t or will not explain them. She will not tell me what makes her sad.

As I lay in bed with her sweet little head next to mine, I study her. Her long, curly blond hair that is turning just a shade darker than it used to be. Her long, thick eyelashes that catches everyone’s attention. Those cheeks that remind me of the day she was born. They are the same cheeks of that precious baby that I held over 7 years ago for the first time.

I looked at that baby with such pride in my heart. I knew right away that this girl would be beautiful, stubborn, independent, brave and a force all her own. I can say with the utmost of certainty that I was right. She is beautiful, stubborn, indepenedent and a force to be reckoned with. As I take my hand and rub her back with her eyes succumbing to the gentle touch I wonder to myself. Can she feel that? Can she feel my love?

I ask for your prayers as we go through her first counseling evaluation. I ask for your stories if you have gone through something similar. I know it could be worse and I am thankful that we are in a position to make sure that if something is going on, then we can take the time and energy to help her. My heart wants to believe that I am being paranoid and this is normal child behavior, but my gut says something differently. I just pray that the answers come soon and that we can provide her with tools to help her in situations where she feels scared or unsafe.

Most importantly I just hope that she feels my love…..

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Author:

I am a wife of ten years, mom of three, Nurse and student! My household is quite chaotic and busy. With a six year old going on sixteen. we shall call her "Sassy", a four year old, who is stubborn as a mule, she shall be called " mini me", and a one year old, we will call "Buddy". Our girls do Ballet, and our son, well he is all boy! Very curious and always getting in to something. When we found out we were having a boy i laughed and said " god must have known we needed a little less diva in our life," Ha, little boys are quite the handful! I love my kids with all of my heart, and i love my job too! As a nurse leader i get to see many sides to healthcare and help encourage and guide new nurses. I love taking care of patients and being able to have grown up talk and then come home to my babies. The house is usually chaotic with lots of tantrums, and messes, but i wouldn't change it for a bit. On the rare occasion that i am able to have some spare time to myself, i like to read, bake and decorate cakes, and take pictures of my kiddos. Time to myself is rare so i decided to start this blog to have a creative outlet and connect with other working moms, who might be going through the same situations as myself. I hope you enjoy my thoughts and stories as a mom, student, wife and Nurse! These stories will range from Diapers and tutus to meetings and boardrooms! and everything that falls in between. Enjoy and thanks for visiting my site.

35 thoughts on “Can you feel my love?

    1. Thanks Deborah! It’s so hard when you can’t figure out what they are thinking. She is so smart an kind! I just hope that she sees those things in herself and that we can find a way to help her. thanks for your kind words they mean a lot 🙂

  1. April, I can empathize. I know how stressful it can be as a parent to have a child that struggles. We started our daughter in counseling around age 8. Looking back, I don’t know if that was the right thing to do, or if it just slapped a label on her and it became a self fulfilling prophecy. It is so hard, I will be sending good vibes!

    1. Thanks! I have the same fear, which is shy I think it took me a second to decide on the counceling. I don’t want to immediately jump to medication or slapping labels on her unless we are 100% sure that she has whateverit is they try to label her. We shall see. more to come once we get her initial evaluation done.

  2. Uffff. It is heartbreaking to think of a little one going through something without being able to express it. I’m certain that she feels your love and feels safe and protected by you otherwise she wouldn’t crawl into bed with you. My 11 year old niece is about to start seeing a psychologist because she gets hysterical when her parents go out. I tell her that her fear and feelings are valid, but the way she is expressing it is inappropriate. We’re all looking forward to having a professional opinion.

    1. Thank you for your kind words. It is definitely scary when you do not know what is going on inside your child’s head but a relief to feel as though help is coming. Hopefully it’s just anxiety issues like the doc thinks it is, time will tell.

  3. Thinking of you…I am pretty sure she knows just how loved she is. I think all children, whether they express a lot of emotion or not, can feel a mother’s love. Good luck with the evaluation xxx

  4. Thank you for sharing your situation, which is in some ways familiar. I grew up not feeling loved by my mother, even though she bent over backwards for me and clearly loves me. She is less affectionate and an introvert, where I’m quite the extrovert. She doesn’t really like hugs much at all and certainly doesn’t like it when people pass the peace at Church and get carried away. My daughter is a bit like my Mum and my son echoes me. He feels unloved and struggles to find his thing. I live with a severe chronic illness, which puts a lot of pressure and uncertainty on the kids and I’ve arranged for some sessions to deal with their concerns, which have helped.
    One recommendation I have is finding out what her love language is and what your own is and they might be quite different and she might need you to show your love in a different way.
    I very clearly remember when I yelled: “You don’t love me” to my mother as a teenager and she replied: “But I stand in the supermarket queue for you”. This clearly meant something to her and believe me, I know get it but at the time, it was like she’d replied to me in a foreign language. What I needed was a hug. That said, as a teen, we’re not always the most hugable!
    Most of us need someone to listen. Notice we more than exist and spend time with us. Not necessarily loads of time but enough.

      1. You’re welcome, April. That advice was given to me and indeed, I need to revisit it myself. I don’t know whether I make things more complicated than they are but I certainly find parenting a lot more complicated than expected and I really appreciate snippets from others to help keep the cogs turning xx Rowena

      1. You’re welcome. To me perhaps the greatest tragedy is loving your child and them not feeling or knowing your love and yet it’s not that uncommon.

  5. Ooooooh! Such a tough spot for a mom. There is not one tiny doubt in my mind that she knows you love her!!! Hugs and prayers for her upcoming evaluation. TRUST your mommy instinct. And if this evaluation doesn’t resolve your gut concerns, keep going! Always follow your instincts with your children. Nobody knows them better than you do! If you haven’t already, you might want to check this out to see if any of it rings true. http://sengifted.org/archives/articles/overexcitability-and-the-gifted

  6. I’m pretty sure she feels your love. Can I ask you (not sure if I missed it while reading): the reason they send you to a councelor is that she cries for something that seems to be nothing for us? I’m a bit surprised as at this age they go through hormone waves and we all know how that affects us. Of course it’s important to keep an eye on it but I wouldn’t worry really at this stage. Sometimes there is a combination of being exhausted (maybe a late night, a bit much at school…) and some hormones kicking in. Sometimes the things that seem nothing to us mean more to them that we might think.
    How is she otherwise? Happy? Laughing? Playing?

    1. They think that she is having anxiety. She picks at her nails constantly and I never have t cut them.. the trouble she has describing her emotions.. I think they are thinking she can get some coping techniques from a councelor.

  7. I’m sure she does, mommy. I’m sure she does!!It’s probably a phase as she tries to figure things out and an astute child is trying to come to terms with it. Trusting your gut is one of the most powerful tool you could ever have and it’s great you are doing counseling evaluation to help her (and you along). Sending you all the positive dusts that all will be fine and that it’s just a phase. My soon to be 5 yo is a piece of work – highly sensitive. Not a big fan of cuddles, bites her fingers and nails and I’ve had some tough times with her. Long story that. We worked through that and we realised that she processes things differently so little things upset her easily.

    It could be something insightful or just nothing. But I’m sure she feels every single jolt if your love. X. 🙂

  8. Oh bless you both, it sounds like you’re going through a rough time. I hope things are sorted for you soon and that you can get some help and support, or whatever you need. Thanks for linking up with the weekend blog hop.

  9. There’s nothing worse than seeing your child struggle. I’m sure she feels your love. Wishing you the best as you go down the path of getting her (and you) any support that she needs. Thank you for sharing at the Manic Mondays blog hop.

  10. My little one has anxiety, she sounds almost the same as your little one. She’s quiet, reserved, and sometimes out of nowhere cries uncontrollably. She’s been called “Drama queen” and so forth, but I knew it wasn’t that, because I know she’s not like that, she’s incredibly sweet and hates to make a fuss about stuff, instead holding it all in until she cannot take anymore and it explodes out of her.

    Let me tell you this without a shadow of a doubt, she can feel your love, you are making her feel safe and I can tell you this because she is letting you in, she is letting you see her true feelings. When I was a kid I had anxiety too, and I never ever showed it because I knew no one would really care, or they would shout at me for making a fuss, or accuse me of being weak. I hid my panic attacks, even though every time I have one, my first feeling is “I’m going to die”.

    Things that have helped with my little one?
    1. Finding out what her triggers are. My little one hates loud noises. We took her to a church party and they had those giant party speakers and my little one immediately had a bit of a meltdown. She was fine once she got used to the volume level but the initial sound made her feel nervous. She also can’t deal with a lot of stress, but her stress is different to what adult stress is. She struggles a lot at school if she doesn’t know the answer and stuff like that, she usually does know the answer but she’s stressed out so she can’t access it. She’s also really scared of being sick, and as soon as she gets anxiety butterflies, that itself can cause a panic attack because she is fearful of being sick.
    2. I find my little one is really intelligent, but her emotional intelligence isn’t on par. Therefore educating her in our emotions, how it’s normal to feel anxiety because we have a flight or fight response etc helps. Crazy that here, they don’t teach anything about feelings. I actually volunteer with mental health patients too, and the younger they are the more important it is to normalise it.
    3. Mindfulness! Mindfulness is AWESOME. Cannot recommend it enough, if no one does it in your area I suggest getting a book. There’s lots of activities you can do together. In fact, that’s what we’ve been doing this week, mindful baking, and mindful art. When you have a panic attack, you go somewhere else for a bit and it’s important to ground them. I get my little one to imagine she’s in her favourite game, and ask her what she can see, smell etc.
    4. No labels! It would be IMPOSSIBLE at this age to find out if it’s actually a symptom of something more, and this wont help you normalise it to your little one. My little one is still too young for therapy, the whole therapy thing stresses her out more because she’s just not old enough to verbalise her exact feelings yet.
    I have bipolar and i know it runs in my family, but it’s impossible to tell at this age. Children have off/on symptoms. The only time you can definitively tell if it’s something more is when they are teenagers, my parents just put it down to severe puberty but I was severely mentally ill when I was a teenager. Before that, no one could have predicted I had it.

    Anyway, these are just tips, use them, don’t use them I’m not going to be offended, but know that I know what it’s like to have a child with anxiety and I feel your pain. You want to have the anxiety for them but I just wanted you to know that we aren’t helpless, there’s stuff we can do!

    1. Wow, these are actually very helpful tips! Myhusbad and I meet with the counselor wednesday and then shewillmet with Brooklyn. I was so afrid that they wouldlabel her and all.. We have afrien th a daughter who has had severe anxiety and hr dad says that h counselor has really helped her! I think I will buy a book on mindfulness it sounds ineresting and I want all the tools that I can t help her. and what you said about your daughter’s emotional intelligence is spot on for my child. emotionally it is almot as if she I younger.. Thanks for your comment I think it just eased my mind a little 🙂

      1. Yes! It’s always been that way with her.
        I think that’s the problem though, being intelligent means you have the ability to think more complexly but without the emotional intelligence to deal with these things? Then it’s no wonder they get anxious.
        Mindfulness is great, I would use it with all your kids! Get them involved. I have been to mindfulness sessions myself, and one of the activities was to concentrate on keeping a balloon in the air, most fun I’ve ever had in therapy! Haha.
        It’s basically stuff I used to do in school when I was a kid, but we called it drama and movement. They really should bring more arts back to school. Too busy wanting to test our kids instead!

      2. omg I know what you mean!! We are lucky that our elementary school has an artist that offers lessons so this year we are signing Brooklyn up for once a week art lessons! She is an excellent drawer and I think it helps her, too bad it isn’t free 😉

      3. Wow, I can’t believe it isn’t free! I hope the lessons are amazing then if you have to pay for them! I would be wanting some famous artist if I had to pay!

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