Yep, that’s me this week. Especially the shouty. And not much of the Good. Urgh. I suppose I could blame it on the ‘threenager’ (yup, totally a word, and very accurate) but that would be completely unfair and not very adult of me. The shouty, I need to own it, and maybe that will help me breathe through it.
I’ve found myself incredibly short-tempered this week. My poor little Ms 3 is not getting very good parenting from me. I’ve been quick to yell, shouting out orders, and angry that she won’t listen. She is three. Mainly, I’ve been furious with myself. And falling into bad self talk. “I’m such a bad mum”. “My kids are going to be so damaged from me”. “How can I be like this.” Mmmmmmmmm. Breath out. Shut my eyes for a few moments. Check that spiraling, dark thought process and put it aside. Let’s face it, it’s not particularly helpful. Nor is the fact that I had forgotten to fill the antidepressant script, and therefore had not taken any for a week. Riiiiiight. It’s a pretty low dose, but clearly it’s still needed at this point. What do you know, my (excellent) GP was right.
There have been terrible events highlighted recently in the news. Terrible incidents and wars where children have been killed. Where parents have lost all of their children in one incident. I cannot even read the articles. My brain cannot comprehend the grief and trauma those parents must feel. I look at my children and am overwhelmed with emotions and fears and hopes. These terrible events remind me to breathe in, and step back. Who cares if we are late somewhere? Who cares if I have to change Mr 1.5 for the third time before we get out the door? It doesn’t matter. They are here, they are healthy, they are happy. I’m not ruining them, I just need to not shout so much. And I need to hug and kiss them multiple times a day. Every day.
It’s Friday, which for us means the end of the Mister’s working week, and two whole days with all of us home together. Swim classes, watching some footy, maybe even breaking out Star Wars for Ms 3 (for the first time ever!!) So I’m throwing the Bad and the Shouty off and heading into the weekend with just the Good.
How about you? Who has had a good, bad or shouty week? Let me know I’m not the only one yelling at her 3-year-old! Let it all out here, a virtual shaking off if you will!
We’ve started getting into Game of Thrones. Finally! It’s surprising really, for those who know me, that its taken so long! It’s full of warriors, smart women, politics, complicated relationships and intrigue. Oh and fighting and sex galore. Yes, there’s enough eye candy in GOT to suit those of both persuasions 🙂 I have always loved ‘fantasy’, books and movies, so GOT covers all the bases for me really. I think it has been a well timed intervention of sorts. I’ve found myself getting into How To Train Your Dragon and Frozen! Ahhh! Mind you, this has coincided with the kids getting into these movies, but really, it’s not good that I’m suggesting we watch them………
I was wondering how it had taken us so long and then realised, it was released around the time our first bub was born. And then we had our little boy. GOT is not easy to follow – well, not at first anyway. We’re into season two now and it’s still complicated. And by all accounts it stays that way. So just popping it on every now and then, when the kids ‘might’ sleep properly, really didn’t work initially for us. We tried. But now, most of the time, when the kids go to sleep usually get at least one, maybe two episodes in. And really, it’s not the type of show you want your three year old seeing accidentally!
So it got me to thinking. Game of Thrones is saving my brain. Yep, true story. It is a complicated, winding, intriguing and thoroughly adult story. Hallelujah! My brain sparks when I watch it and when I think about. I’m going to read the books. I’m going to read lots of books!
What else have I been ‘late to the party’ on, due to the fact that I’ve got two small children? And they all seem to be TV shows, but that’s fine. Vikings. Oh my god, that show is great, but we only just found it recently. True Detective – That has completely gone past me, but sounds like something I would get into. True Blood. I was behind the times anyway with that one, but did some major catching up. LOVE. IT.
What have you been ‘late to the party’ on? Could be anything – movies, music, news, a food fad. Hit me with them!
They melt my heart. We’ve had a bit of a rough fortnight here. Colds, conjunctivitis, teething, upset tummies and lots of little kids parties. It all amounts to tired toddlers and ratty parents. Perhaps even the other way around.
Blocked noses and bubba’s who suck their thumbs, do not equal good sleep. Mr 15 months had just worked out the sleeping through the night thing, when wham! Blocked nose, cold, conjunctivitis and a back tooth trying to come through all happened at once. Urgh. So one night, when I had settled him back to sleep for the fourth time, all before 3am, Ms 3 woke up and wanted me to come into her room. Usually she comes into our bed and goes to sleep. But the Mister was also sick, and this just wasn’t working.
So in I trudge, thinking I was never going to see sleep again. She lay there, looking up at me as I sat down, then she patted the pillow and said “you want to lie down with me?”. Heart melted. Thoughts of sleep no longer matter. God I love her. She is so adorable. Then she says “can you sing me a beautiful song to help me sleep?” Good lord. Cuteness overload. I don’t really sing, it’s not that soothing really, but she requested twinkle twinkle, so I sang that and she nearly fell asleep. Wow, this might be a winner I thought. Her eyes popped open and she smiled at me again. “Lie down a little bit mummy.” Ok. Why not. An hour later she finally fell asleep and I went back to my bed. Not caring one jot that it was only an hour and half before I was likely to be woken again.
It’s the little things sometimes, that make parenting so worth it.
As I’ve blogged earlier, I experienced PND with my first bubba, and it has also made itself known this time around. But I’m talking about something a little different. I’ve lost ME, for a little while. I think that it’s normal – after all there are massive changes after giving birth – physical and emotional. My focus has completely shifted. It is so easy to lose sight of yourself, as an individual, whilst mothering. Perhaps it’s easier when not in paid work as well? I’m at home, and not in the paid workforce at this time. So you know, spending days at a time talking to small people who don’t understand a) what you mean and b) logic, can be exhausting. Exhausting!
The relentless routine of feeding, cleaning, feeding, cleaning, and laundry. So much laundry. Every. Day. Perhaps it’s not really surprising that the mojo disappears for a while. I’m sure I’m not the only one. Right? Right?! Hehehehe.
So i’m on a bit of a mission to get my mojo back. And I’m not just talking losing weight and doing some exercise, although that will be a part of it. It’s about finding me as a person again. Or perhaps more accurately, easing some of my individual self back for me. And for The Mister. ‘Cos that’s a whole other issue – the evolving nature of the couple, once kids are added to the mix!
I’m starting with some obvious things – trying to improve the household diet, and add some regular exercise in. But I’ve also thought I need to do some more interaction with adults. So I’ve joined MOPS – Mothers of Pre-schoolers. It’s a playgroup where the kids are cared for in their rooms – ie baby and toddler rooms, and the mums get to participate in conversation, some activities and listen to different speakers for a whole two hours, no kids! (unless they need their nappies changed, then you get paged….). It’s really been interesting and has lead to another positive. They held are little Market just prior to mother’s day, just for the MOPS mums. We were encouraged to have a table there if we were starting up a new business, or if we already had one. It kicked me into gear, an a little seed of an idea that we have been sitting with has sprouted! The Mister and I are still working on it, but we are setting up an online store. Once it’s active I’ll write about it a bit more.
It’s been a bit of a challenge, and a bit nerve wracking – I’ve not really done any retail or markets before, but I do feel it’s actually helping my energy as well. We’ve got the office tidy and back in control, the same with changing out the pantry, and organising the kitchen. All things we’ve been meaning to do for ages.
Tell me, what have you done to get your mojo back post baby? Are you still looking for it? Tell me I’m not the only one????!!!!!!
* I’ve linked this up to the Digital Parents Blog Carnival for May 2014! Click through to check out some really excellent blogs.photo by: MSVG
Oh my god! I’m so excited about this giveaway! Do your kids like dinosaurs? Do you like animatronics? Do you just love free stuff to entertain the kids??!! Then this is for you.
Dinosaur Adventures is an exhibition coming to the Caulfield Racecourse in June and July. You can explore a prehistoric world full of life-size moving dinosaurs! Woo! I don’t know about you, but I have two small people who love dinosaurs, all thanks to Peppa Pig. They may be surprised when they see how big these dinosaurs are!!
As part of the experience, kids will be get their own expert digger outfit and be a paleontologist for the day! Also, there will be a whole lot of other dinosaur activities including dinosaur sand art, dinosaur library, fossil displays, dinosaur
inflatable activity lands and rides, dinosaur sand pit, photographic souvenirs inside a
life sized dinosaur egg and so much more!
So to the prize itself! I have one Family Pass (2 adults and 2 children) to the Exclusive VIP Opening Night of Dinosaur Adventures for Friday 20 June, 6:30pm. You have to be able to make it to the Caulfield Racecourse (Victoria) to participate. Please fill in the widget below to enter and feel free to share the comp around! Good luck!
Post Natal Depression. Ah crap. That can’t be right. Not me. My husband is super supportive, I have fantastic support from my mum, family and close friends.
Mothering was ‘supposed’ to be my thing! I’m ‘supposed’ to be ‘good’ at this! I should be feeling seven shades of bliss and happiness right now. Not feeling so overwhelmed that I can’t make a decision about how to finish the shopping, or to even get out of the house.
I’m well educated and aware when it comes to PND – I’ve worked with vulnerable women and their families for over 10 years, including new mums and community agencies. I know that it’s a lot more common than people think, that it has nothing to do with your ability or education.
I was diagnosed with PND when my first bub was four months old. And this came about because I knew how I felt wasn’t the way it had to be. I talked to my husband and to my mum – a current Maternal and Child Health nurse. A then I went to my GP. She was brilliant. Listened to me, reassured me, and basically acknowledged how I was feeling and just how hard and UNEXPECTED mothering can be.
For me, a combination of counselling and medication helped. But there again was another thing to ‘feel guilt’ about – medication whilst breastfeeding! However, I was reassured by my GP, and to be honest, I needed something to help me out of the fog I was in. Medication helped me with that. I’ve always thought and advocated that if the mum isn’t at her best, how can the rest of the family be?
In the time since this all came about, I’ve done a lot of thinking and reflection. How have we developed such expectations of ourselves? Why should I as a woman, automatically ‘be good’ at mothering? Why do I think I should be? Why do I think that I’m not? Mothering, parenting, is such an amazing, tiring, funny, exhausting, wonderful and shattering experience all at once. It’s not something that you can fully prepare for, despite the reading, the classes, the internet trawling you might do. It is different for EVERYONE. The pregnancy, the birth process, the feeding, the sleeping, the change to your partnership. The change to yourself.
The most important thing I think I can say to anyone about to become parents, or even those already in it, is to be kind to yourself. Be gentle. Love your baby and family. But love yourself as well. Chances are, you’re doing a fabulous job.
If you think you could be feeling better, or your partner could be feeling better, check PANDA out. They’re a good place to start.
I’ve written before about why we chose to use modern cloth nappies with our babies. I thought I would write a little about washing, drying and maintaining the nappies, for anyone out there interested in trying them with their bubs.
We mainly use baby behinds hemp one size fits all, and itti bitti snap in styles. There are a couple of other types floating in the mix, but these are the main types. They are all washed in the same way. We also use face washers/cloths instead of disposable wipes.
So after a nappy change, I rinse any solids (or not so solid when they were pre-solid food) straight into the toilet. I have a very handy partner who loves to DIY and he attached a hose to the toilet that helps no end with this process! Once the nappy is rinsed I place it straight into a bucket in the laundry, put the lid on and leave it. I dry pail – which simply means I don’t soak the nappies, but I wash at least every second day. If you leave it longer, the urine can wreck the elastic in the nappies, and the stink increases also. Also, this past year I’ve had two in nappies, so it has often meant I’ve washed every day.
Once the bucket is full, I place them all in the washing machine and do a rinse cycle. I put the nappies and the covers all in together, along with the cloths and nappy liners (if I’ve remembered to use them!). Nappy liners are great – you can purchase eco disposable ones, but I prefer to use reusable ones. Super easy to make – strips of fleece material, you know, that jumpers are made from. The solids come off the liner a lot easier than the nappy.
After the rinse, I usually choose the 30-40 degree setting and an intensive rinse. Most of the manufacturers seem to recommend no higher than 60 degrees (Celsius) for the nappies, to look after the elastic. There seem to be differing opinions about using cold or warm wash, and on using washing powder/liquid. I use whatever washing liquid we have in the laundry, although sometimes I manage to score some Rockin’ Green, which is designed for use with modern cloth nappies, but is often really hard to get. We always have eco/green washing liquid in the cupboard. Less is definitely more when it comes to MCNs – too much detergent will build up in the nappies, and they become stinky and less absorbent, and you’ll have to do a strip wash.
The nappies do well when you can dry them in the sunlight – the UV helps whiten them and is good for getting rid of bacteria also. However, if you need to use a dryer no problem. I find our hemp nappies soften up really well after a tumble in the dryer. Just don’t put the PUL covers in. They dry so quickly anyway, just whack them on the clothes horse. We didn’t have a dryer until our second one came along, and they were both in nappies. Couldn’t keep up!
I mentioned a strip wash above. This is for when the nappies become a bit stinky and aren’t absorbing very well. Wash them as normal and then put them through a couple of washes with no detergent. Some people recommend using a small amount of dish washing liquid in the first wash. I sometimes use the Canesten Laundry Rinse also, particularly if the kids haven’t been well.
We don’t use cloth 100% of the time – if the kids are sick, if I’m sick – we do use disposables. But we do our best to use cloth most of the time. How about you? Any tips on washing and drying your cloth nappies that aren’t mentioned here?