The only thing worse than having fibromylagia is having fibromyalgia and toddlers. I am a mother of two young children, Levi 3 and Ruby 1. They are really good kids, but they are toddlers and like every toddler, they are very busy kids. They run, climb, jump, fight, hate each other one minute, and love each other the other minute. I love my kids and would never give them up, but sometimes, I feel like I can’t do it for one more minute literally.
When I have a normal day, I wake up extremely stiff….and very sore. It can take me anywhere from 1 hour to 3 hours to feel like I can move around with minimal pain…but because I have two very little children, they rely on me to take care of them, get their breakfast, get the dressed, and get them ready for the day. I have taught my daughter to climb into her highchair, so I don’t have to lift her, just be there to make sure she doesn’t slip and get hurt. My son wakes me up when they wake up. I have them in the same room even though they are boy and girl because Levi is fantastic at being mommy’s helper. It really is amazing how much young children know. Levi has decided that he likes to have a nice clean area to play with his trains, cars, riding toys, etc. so I have taught him to clean up our living room when his toys take over our living room. He likes to “help” vaccuum and shampoo carpets, clean the living room and whatnot. He puts his toys in our toyroom/guestroom/my flare room. He is very helpful. I know that some people think that isn’t fair to make a child clean and be responsible but because of what he has learned, he gets allowance and once a month I let him go to the store and buy what he wants, and the rest of it goes into savings…so all in one I teach him to work for his money, the value of his money, and how to save money. Ruby is following suit by helping to pick up toys…and throw her diapers in the garbage for me.
Anyways…I try very hard to keep my kids on a schedule so that I know what to expect every day and if I have to have someone watch my children for me they know what to expect and can pretty much just follow schedule.
This is an example of a normal day for me.
7:00—(or earlier)the kids wake up…and Ruby heads for the high chair. I help her climb in, strap her down and get her ready. I either give her cereal or a poptart during the week because that is easiest. Levi heads to his “eating spot” and I give him his bowl of cereal. I take my morning meds which is usually my thyroid med, a pain pill, a muscle relaxer, and an ibuprofen, while the kids eat I sit down and open up the laptop to relax and let my medicine kick in so that I can get mobile.
8:00— Kids are usually done eating by now and I get them dressed and fix their hair and we brush our teeth.
8:15— Kids get to watch some cartoons while I try to get some house work done….this can take anywhere from 1 hour to 3 hours.
9:00— Snack time for the kids…something healthy…an apple, and cheese. or crackers and cheese, toast and peanut butter…simple fast and healthy.
9:30— Free play….kids run and have fun while I finish cleaning…or relaxing…I usually have to sit down every half an hour or so because if I don’t then when I am done cleaning I am too stiff to do anything.
11:00— Lunch Time….fast and easy is the key. I used to feel bad about banquet meals and whatnot…but I have gotten over that because sometimes I just have to do that if we don’t have leftovers in the fridge. The kids eat their lunch and then take a nap
12:00— Nap time—-Levi does not have to nap but he does have to rest…they go to their bedroom and take a nap
anwhere from 2:00-3:00—Kids wake up and we do a snack. again something healthy.
3:00—Mommy time, we usually read or color or draw at this time together. They love it. and it’s easy on me.
4:00—Free play or movie time.
4:30—Daddy gets home from work and he helps me make supper, while the kids play.
6:00—cuddle time with mommy and daddy or free play or their choice…read a book, color,
7:00—bath every other night.
7:30—brush teeth and get in pajama’s, then cuddle time with mommy and daddy before bed
8:00—bed time(earlier if they are being naughty or fighting too much)
Now keep in mind this was a NORMAL day…I, like any other person with fibromyalgia have really bad days, but having my kids used to a schedule keeps things a little less difficult because they don’t fight nap and they know that around this time of day they do this or that. On really bad days I ask for help. You should never feel bad if you have to have help. I either have a friend, or my mom or my inlaws come and sit with me during the early part of the day before nap time…or if need be I ask my neighbor to babysit them for a few hours so I can atleast get a little rest. I also put in to play Movie Day where we cuddle up in daddy’s big recliner and watch movies all morning, that way I don’t have to be up and down all day long, and when I am having a bad day, I do let me house go. I cannot always be cleaning because I am not physically able to clean all the time…but because my kids like to have a clean place to play they are pretty good about picking up their own toys…even though some days just get away from us and by the end of the day it’s just a mess. On really bad days, my husband has to step up and clean and make supper while I lay in my recliner or on the couch. I also allow the kids to watch a little more tv than normal. One thing I want you to remember, never feel bad if you can’t be the mom you think your kids need. YOU are MOM, no one can hug them, or love them like you can and no one can replace you. Your kids love you and nobody can replace you!