I really don’t know where to start when it comes to Reflecting On 2020. 2020 has been such a whirlwind of a year, a real rollercoaster. To be fair, I don’t think you could make some of the stuff up that happened in 2020!
2020 was certainly a year of uncertainty. Which for many caused anxiety levels to run high. Which I will admit, it unquestionably sent my anxiety levels through the roof.
Reflecting on 2020, I remember starting the year having to attend the Breast Cancer Clinic to have investigations done for a ‘mass’ found in my breasts. This came about after having a CT scan in December 2019 when querying lymphoma.
Thankfully, I was given the all clear and everything has been good since.
My son Mckenzie, who I’ve suspected has Autism became catatonic after his return to school after the Christmas break. He was unresponsive and unable to move or communicate. It was one of the scariest things I’ve ever witnessed. We now know it was an autistic burnout.
With Mckenzie’s permission, I will write about the whole scenario which lasted a whole year. (Keep an eye out for that)
Also, in January 2020, my second-born son Harvey received a diagnosis of ADHD after 10 years of ‘fighting’ to get this for him. Again, with Harvey’s permission, I will write about our experiences separately.
It’s common knowledge that 2020 was mostly dominated by Covid-19 with the majority of the year seeing the UK living under lockdown restrictions.
I know a lot of people struggled with the first UK lockdown. But, I’m going to be honest. I welcomed it and embraced it as much as I could. Using the power of positive thinking to get me through it.
I loved having all 5 of my boys home. Especially as Harvey, Mckenzie and Caelan had been struggling with school. I felt content having my boys home where I could control their environment and mental health to avoid meltdowns and shutdowns.
With having all my boys in education, I felt like I didn’t spend as much time with them as I’d like, but lockdown allowed us to reconnect as a family. Just being together and knowing we were all safe, gave me peace of mind.
As a family, we took advantage of the glorious weather by spending our days in the garden. Putting up the hot tub earlier than usual and enjoying the late spring and early summer weather.
I tried to use my time to be productive and learn. I’m always looking for ways to improve myself. I completed a Level 2 in Understanding Autism, a Level 2 in Understanding Mental Health In Children and I became a Relax Kids Coach.
The one downside of lockdown was having to close my childminding business due to lockdown restrictions which was awful. Giving how much I adore my job. I really missed the kiddies I care for. Plus the added stress of losing 5 months worth of income. Thankfully I save for ’emergencies’ like these.
The savings took a beating but, I know it can be made back again.
In September we lost one of our Chihuahua pups, Apollo. When it was too late, we found out that he had a congenital heart defect. There was nothing we could do but put him to sleep. His death broke us all. It wasn’t a life lesson I wanted to teach and have my boys experience.
In November my eldest son, Cameron turned 18. How is that even possible? The years have flown over.
In December, after 10 years of repeatedly raising my concerns that Mckenzie is autistic, we finally got a diagnosis. I can not tell you what a relief it was. To have my suspicions confirmed and to know that I never gave up advocating for both Harvey and Mckenzie to get them a diagnosis, which will hopefully benefit them for their futures.
Christmas 2020 was a little different. With Covid still doing the rounds there was no Christmas performances, no Christmas parties, no pantomimes. Which 100% benefitted my boys massively. Without all of the added sensory stimulus and changes to routine and expectations, our Christmas was one of our best ones yet. And not a single meltdown in sight.