Memorable moments

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The first moment to remember for me is a very happy one. The day we found out we were expecting our boy. It was early in the morning and I made my way through blurry eyes to the bathroom. I had the days counted out on the calendar and hoped and prayed that this would be our month. I took the test and with baited breath awaited those two lines. They showed up instantly. To me it felt like an eternity. I was so excited I left the test in the bathroom. I could not yet share the news with my husband because we had visitors. So I waited till they left and then told him. I will never forget his response. He was so excited, quickly followed by “wow my legs just went numb”. It was the best 6 year wedding anniversary present we could have ever gotten.

My second moment to remember would have to be the birth of our boy. It was a stormy night and at 11 pm as I was getting out of my chair my waters broke. The contractions soon followed one on top of another like a wave. We called our midwife who suggested we make our way to the hospital as soon as possible. This baby was coming tonight. We rushed out the door. My husband had a broken foot. All I remember of the entire 20 minute trip to the hospital was me begging my husband to drive faster in the pouring rain and through the thunder oh and I wanted all the drugs I could have. It all happened so fast I had neither drugs nor the water birth I had planned. Finally we got to the hospital and not a moment too soon. 20 minutes after arriving I cradled my newborn in my arms. 6 pounds of pure perfection. We were in love from that very first surreal moment of laying eyes on him.

My third moment to remember was our last holiday together as a childless couple. I had just finished studying and we were off on a 6 week holiday to America. Those 6 weeks will forever live in my memory as the we experienced a whole new level of being together and enjoying each others company. We visited new places had crazy, fun adventures and grew as individuals and as a couple. I learned that my husband always has my back and that I can in fact sleep in the bush with bears and other wild animals and survive. That and the stress from not wanting to meet any of those wild animals is the fastest way to loose some weight.

Getting my ZEN back

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Like all mums I had an idea about the kind of mum I wanted to be when I had kids, and I strive to be the best mum I can be for F every day. At the end of some days I feel like I am a good mum, but at the end of others I think I could have done a way better job.

I have never been a very relaxed, go with the flow kind of person. I am a stress bunny. I stress about everything.  I am also quite stubborn & once I get an idea in my head it can be hard for me to let it go.

Photo: Gets worse during parenthood. -LH.

The only time I was completely relaxed was when I was pregnant. 9 months of me being completely relaxed. A lot of our friends couldn’t believe the “change” in me. The cruisy, relaxed me lasted for a few months after F’s birth. Slowly but surely though I could feel this feeling of zen starting to slip away & I was becoming more stressed again.

I find myself getting stressed when I do not get through the list in my head. You know, the.never.ending.list.of.things.that.need.to.get done. I start a job then halfway through I find something else that needs to be done. For example I am doing the dishes and need to put something in the bin only to find the bin is full and needs emptying before I can put more stuff in so I go empty the bins. Then in the garage where the washing machine and big rubbish bin lives, the washing machine has finished. So I get the laundry out and take it into the house to hang up after I have finished the dishes. I just start on the dishes then litte man lets me know he needs a nappy change. So I do that, take the nappy to the garage, come back into the house wash my hands and go back to the dishes. The water is cold by this stage.

In between doing housework I need to make sure I actually spend time with W & F before I run out the door to work. I feel really bad when F comes to me and sweetly ask me to play with him and I tell him for the umpteenth time “mama is just in the middle of doing this I’ll play with you later” or when I give the same response to him wanting to go for a walk. He loves going for walks. This is when I start to get frustrated because I have things to get done but my boy and husband need me too.

I have a very understanding husband though. He sees when I struggle and steps in. Giving me a sleep in or telling me to get out of the house and to town to treat myself or even taking F out for a couple of hours so I can rest. There are other things that I can do too, to help me manage these stressful moments.

1) Make sure I get enough sleep. This can be tricky as F isn’t a very good sleeper. In saying that, I don’t help myself either. I stay up way too late being distracted with TV and Facebook.

2) Not making myself into a martyr. Which lets face it is very easy to do. I am only one person. The washing can wait for tomorrow. People and relationships are far more important and surprisingly enough (head slap moment) my family’s actually quite willing to help if I swallow my pride and ask for it.

3) Doing things for me that I enjoy- after F is in bed. Like painting my toe nails, doing Yoga or Pilates or any exercise. Having a long relaxing bubble bath, or writing this blog. Something to remind me of who I actually am (more exploration on this front is needed though)

4) Taking time to read a book. Any book but perhaps not a parenting book because I read a great many of those already along with articles I find online.

5) Spending time with, and reconnecting with my husband. This does not happen as often as it should but when we make time it makes a BIG difference to how things flow around the house. After F is in bed we usually do a scramble around the house to tidy or we go and do our own projects that we didn’t have time for during the day.

I know I will not just be able to snap my fingers to get my ZEN back, it will take some time. I do hope it will happen though.

What do you do to take care of yourself? I would love to hear your suggestions.

Mama where am I?

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Anyone who has spent any time with little kids know they are full of questions. I am just beginning to find that out.

Our boy F who is 2 is full of questions. Seemingly constantly. I love that he is so inquisitive and observant, he doesn’t miss a thing.    Because of this we have given him a nickname: Hawk eyes.

You simply can’t sneak anything past him. For example the other day my husband W & F were walking in the garden when F spotted a plane overhead. He turned to his dad, asking where the plane’s noise was? W then explained to him that the plane was simply too far away for them to still be able to hear it’s noise despite being able to see it.

I was taken by surprise a couple of weeks ago while F & I were walking past the bookshelf in our hallway.  F noticed a photo of my husband & I that was taken on our honeymoon at Dreamworld where you dress up in olden day clothes. F looked at the photo & asked “mama where am I?” I told him that it was taken long before he was  born. He was not satisfied with that answer & simply asked again. So again I told him that he wasn’t growing in my tummy yet. That seemed to satisfy him & we moved on.

Since then he has noticed other photo’s of my husband & I around the house that do not include him. While playing together in the lounge last night he spotted a photo that was taken on a camping trip some years ago, again inquiring why he wasn’t in this photo either.  I told him again that it was taken before he was growing in my belly but he was growing in my heart.  He was not happy with my answer & made up his own story of where he was. Stating that he saw daddy with the light on his head & went to visit him. (We were wearing  headlamps hence the light on daddy’s head). I was impressed with his creativity of making up where he was, & that he feels somehow excluded because it was taken before we fell pregnant with him. How do you explain to a 2 year old that for the first 6 years of our marriage he simply didn’t exist.

What do you tell your kids when these kinds of questions come up?

I just hope I will have more creative answers for him when the bigger questions like “Where do babies come from?” gets asked.

Wish me luck.