Gosh but I awoke this morning in foul temper! I’ve not slept well the last couple of nights which is totally par for the course at going on 35 weeks pregnant, and I really can’t complain as thus far I have had such an easy ride. But, being both heavily pregnant and human, I have this morning perhaps complained a tad, or rather, seethed with resentment at my husband, for want of a better option. How dare he be able to sleep soundly, how dare he not be able to physically bear a child and thus share the load!! So very not nice, I know. And okay possibly just a little bit unreasonable.
I woke up at 4.45am and couldn’t get back to sleep, on a day when Miss M, miracle of miracles, was still fast asleep at gone six. Why? Why?? My beloved is fortunate that he has not (thus far) suggested to me that this is nature’s way of preparing me for the new baby. He did himself no favours, however, by later getting up and switching on the Skype while I was in the open plan kitchen, thus exposing me to our entire German family at a wedding reception, unwashed and dressed as I was in hot fushia elasticated sleeping shorts and an over-sized mens racerback top stretched over (most of) my bump and flashing my boobs. Having insisted that he cover the camera so that I could get past and change, I then returned to the kitchen and started furiously chopping vegetables for this afternoon’s barbie with friends. Which was actually quite therapeutic, and recognising that it would be nicer to fill the crudités with love rather than resentment, I calmed down (a bit).
Matrimonial bliss is not yet quite restored, but I am now home alone as they are off to the playpark and then the supermarket. Being home alone is nice and helpful when one is not feeling at one’s best. I am going to have a large mug of decaff and two thick slices of raisin toast. With real butter, and a real, grown-up book! After which I will meditate for five minutes…and hopefully, inner peace will be restored. Namaste!
Blogtoberfest 2012, 21/31
Unsurprisingly the practice of meditation comes up a lot when Mindfulness is discussed. I’ve had a bash now and then over the years, with little success. During the initial stages of my recovery from alcoholism (I quit drinking almost ten years ago) I brushed against the idea but having the attention span of a gnat, it really wasn’t for me back then. I focussed instead on AA meetings (in the first months), my long term sessions with my psychologist, and other what I considered to be more “practical” ways of getting better. Then life did get better, but my interest in meditiation had waned. A couple of years later I found myself WWOOFing (Willing Workers On Organic Farms) on a small farm in rural NSW that was run by a couple of Buddhist nuns. I tried to meditate again, with them, in a setting that couldn’t have been more conducive unless the Dalai Lama himself had been there, but I guess my heart wasn’t properly in it, and when I left the property, I left my meditative intentions behind too. Later on, work, life, travel occupied me utterly, and then I became a mother…and here I am.
Over the past year, however, my quest to live a more Mindful existence has of course thrown the idea of meditation my way many, many times, especially when I went to the 2012 Happiness Conference in Sydney earlier this year. I keep telling myself I just don’t have the time, or quite frankly the concentration span. But I also keep hearing about how very good it is, and that many people believe that even a little bit at a time can have such great benefits for one’s sense of well-being, health and peace. This morning I started a book by Nicky Arthur called How to be a Happier Mum, and in the first pages, there it was again. I consider myself to be a happy person in general, but apparently, if I commit to meditate for just five small minutes per day for seven days, I will start to feel even happier. Short and simple instructions – how to sit, how to focus, and a few affirmations – are provided and I am assured that this really will make a difference. It’s not two hours on a Himalayan hilltop, but it’s a start! So, I am going to take up the challenge. My first five minutes will begin shortly!
Blogtoberfest 2012, 20/31
This week I’m taking the grateful “prompt” directly from Maxabella. Little moments are so important not only in themselves but because when we focus on them, the bigger, harder stuff doesn’t seem so overwhelming or difficult. I feel so fortunate in that I get a lot of one on one time with my daughter – well, ok, by the time her Papa gets home from work I am quite happy not to be having any more one on one with her but all SAHMs will know that feeling I am sure! And sometimes I might get
a little bit very bored of playing trains or tea parties, most certainly. But we go out a lot too and I get enough adult conversation most days, and I get so many precious little moments with her, just watching her grow and blossom as we meander through our daily stuff. I am so very grateful for those.
It’s been almost two weeks since we ditched the telly. I feel like I’m spending so much more time really focussing on Miss M, and I’m enjoying it. It’s nowhere near as hard as I thought it would be, in fact it’s not hard at all now I’ve adjusted to it. I feel so much more relaxed because my down time or cooking time or chore time isn’t restricted by how long her focus will last on Playschool or Sesame Street; and I don’t have that nagging guilt bugging me any more. Plus I don’t know if it’s coincidence and just the developmental stage she’s at, or the effect of no TV, but she’s talking much more all of a sudden and her concentration span for independent play has increased substantially. I’m still able to get chores and cooking done, and even sit down and read a book for 20-30 minutes a couple of times a day! The timing seems great too as in just five weeks her little sister will be here, so I get to make the very most of the days Miss M and I have left just the two of us, while at the same time she’s learning ways to occupy herself for longer stretches – which we’ll all need her to do when the new baby arrives and rocks our little world!
So yes, I’m making the most of all the little moments and being grateful for them. And when things aren’t going so well, I’m tired and grumpy, or she is…I try and be Mindful, and bring it back to the small stuff of the moment, because it is so often the case that these little moments really are the most precious ones.
Blogtoberfest 2012, 19/31
Today I just want to share a poem that was emailed to me this morning by a lovely relative. I think it’s great.
Children Learn What They Live
If children live with criticism, they learn to condemn.
If children live with hostility, they learn to fight.
If children live with fear, they learn to be apprehensive.
If children live with pity, they learn to feel sorry for themselves.
If children live with ridicule, they learn to feel shy.
If children live with jealousy, they learn to feel envy.
If children live with shame, they learn to feel guilty.
If children live with encouragement, they learn confidence.
If children live with tolerance, they learn patience.
If children live with praise, they learn appreciation.
If children live with acceptance, they learn to love.
If children live with approval, they learn to like themselves.
If children live with recognition, they learn it is good to have a goal.
If children live with sharing, they learn generosity.
If children live with honesty, they learn truthfulness.
If children live with fairness, they learn justice.
If children live with kindness and consideration, they learn respect.
If children live with security, they learn to have faith in themselves and in those about them.
If children live with friendliness, they learn the world is a nice place in which to live.
By Dorothy Law Nolte, PhD
Blogtoberfest 2012, 18/31
Choosing to have my first caesarean section was a tough decision. Choosing to have this one is the hardest decision I have ever had to make. It’s my life, and my baby’s life! Don’t demand that I explain myself to you. Don’t use me to validate your own life and choices or make yourself feel good. Get a bloody grip and keep your opinions & judgement to yourself!
Sometimes one of the hardest parts of motherhood is other mothers. It shouldn’t be this way. Usually I let it slide but it’s hard when I’m this pregnant and so close to meeting my little girl and feeling so excited about it all…and I go for a picnic in the park and face a barrage of questions from people I don’t even know. Why can’t people just live and let live??
Next time someone tells you they’re having a c-section, unless they volunteer further information, a word of advice – don’t say “why are you having one? why did you have the last one? is this baby also breach? can’t you try for a natural birth? don’t you want to?” It’s none of your #%^@**# business!!
Blogtoberfest 2012, 17/31
We had a lovely weekend away and today I decided to just leave all the post-hol clutter and washing and take Miss M out for a walk and picnic in the Botanical Gardens. The temperature in our little subtropical corner of the world is apparently only 23 degrees this afternoon but it feels much warmer. I’m not feeling very energetic to say the least, but I am feeling very content. When we drive 10 minutes down the road to the lush green Gardens or go for a walk by the Pacific Ocean I do always without fail still take note and count my blessings – it’s a far cry from Sauchiehall Street in Glasgow, fond though my memories are! But after almost three years here I no longer really feel like we’re in a foreign country on a day to day basis. However, when we go away somewhere as we have done this weekend, I suddenly find myself travelling in Australia! It’s great! Beautiful, beautiful scenery, great weather, gorgeous beaches, and kangaroos! The roos are of no interest to Miss M whatsoever, lil Aussie that she is, but to her parents they are still an object of some excitement. I also still get a bit of a buzz out of seeing palm trees and parrots! What can I say? Might sound a bit mad to some but as always, it’s the little things, isn’t it? Grateful, much. Happy Blogtoberfest Day 16!
Blogtoberfest 2012, 16/31
Two posts today as we’re going away for a couple of days, and while I don’t want to miss a Blogtoberfest post, I also don’t want to be messing about online during this precious family time before our new baby arrives. I guess I could write this, save it as a draft and then simply post it via my phone tomorrow, but I just don’t want the distraction. Possibly I am breaking some ‘fest rules? Well, I’m quite glad to see there’s still some of the old rebel left in me 😉 And besides:
This quote by Guillaume Apollinaire came up on my Facebook newsfeed this morning, another great share by Kirri White. I knew immediately that I wanted to share it here myself for tomorrow’s post. Because it is exactly what I am going to be doing 🙂
Blogtoberfest 2012, 14/31
The other week while enjoying one of my favourite pastimes, browsing in the local second-hand bookstore, I idly picked up a book called Skinny Bitch: Bun in the Oven. I was intrigued by the title (successful marketing tactic indeed!), I thought it look like a no-nonsense guide to healthy eating during pregnancy, and it was only $7. So I bought it. Turns out it’s a hardcore treatise on veganism, with particular emphasis on its benefits in pregnancy – not what I was expecting! The style is very easy to read and very, very in your face. Some of it is not easy to take. Descriptions of slaughterhouse activity made me physically recoil. And even decaff is bad for me and my baby? No meat, eggs, fish, or dairy?? What the hell’s left?! “Fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts, seeds and wholegrains!!!” is the oft repeated battle cry. I have always believed in the everything in moderation philosophy when it comes to food, with the exception of the usual things to avoid in pregnancy like salami (hot hungarian, oh how I have missed you!) and pate, soft cheese and so on. But this book has me all shook up! Vast amounts of detail referencing countless studies about all the horrible chemicals and hormones that are in almost everything we eat these days unless we’re very, very careful. I’m finding it hard to put it out of my mind.
I’m almost 8 months pregnant and so now is not the time to be making drastic dietary changes. But I have to confess, I am now very vegan-curious. Completely by accident! So, there are going to be a few gradual changes around here:
- No more white pasta or rice (we never eat white bread anyways so that’s a start).
- I meal plan and cook mostly from scratch already but from now on I’ll be introducing, if not vegan initially, then at the very least more vegetarian dinners into our diet. My daughter doesn’t eat meat anyway so it’s more than time I started properly investigating the alternatives.
- More shopping for fruit and veg at the local markets, of which there are many – we are so fortunate. Supermarket chain produce is over-priced anyway (and may I just say, “fresh food people”, my ass). We are on a tight budget but I’m happy to pay a little more for the things that really matter. And tofu is cheaper than meat anyway so we should make some savings there.
My husband is wary, but on board with these initial plans, and shall see how we go. Another rather unexpected turn of events for our little family! I’d be very interested to hear from any real-life vegan or similarly vegan-curious readers.
Blogtoberfest 2012, 13/31
Today I am grateful:
- For the new connections I’m making via Blogtoberfest
- That my hormones are in “up” mode at present 🙂
- That the sun’s come out after a few rainy days
- That my baby girl will most likely be here 6 weeks today!!!
- That my toddler is fast asleep right now 🙂
- That 6 days into our “experiment”, nobody has died without the telly 😉
- That the three of us are going up the coast for an impromptu pre-baby mini break tomorrow (woot!)
- That I have blueberry muffins in the freezer that I’d forgotten, and I am off to eat one right now!
Blogtoberfest 2012, 12/31