A mum and a wife and sometimes just me

Friday 27 April 2012

Thursday 26 April 2012

It's play time

So I really want to remember all of my son's childhood. All the moments seem so special not just those big ones. Yet I said to a friend recently whose baby just turned six months that I already can't remember what my son was like then. At fourteen months I have really seen my son grow and I want to remember this. He's not walking and other than mamà and papà we are not getting any real words even if we are getting lots and LOTS of chatter. Play time is different now though. He loves going outside...craves it. It started in Italy when he got the keys and crawled to the front door waving bye to everyone! I've learned to make sure everything is ready for us to head out before I put my jacket on otherwise there is trouble. He has recognised that this means we are leaving and he is jumping all over me literally begging me to pick him up so we can go. He gets so excited when he realises that we are going to the park and he gets to get out of the pushchair. He loves the swings, the slide and exploring. He LOVES exploring. He is happy to crawl around in the dirt picking everything up and giving it a good lick to check if it is edible and what he can do with it. Then even though he's not walking this does not mean he does not exercise his right to climb on everything. There is no longer anything which is technically out of his reach. As far as my son is concerned everything is fair game.

Tuesday 24 April 2012

A journey

This is a long post with no funnies so you might want to look away now. I have actually debated a lot with myself about writing it. When hubby heard I was writing something he actually advised me not to blog it...people can be judgemental he says. I said that people can also be supportive. The point is I have always felt comfortable hiding my emotions and sharing only what I think people want to hear with the fear of being judged. I am learning to be in a place where I am comfortable with myself that that judgement is not so important. This blog is about me and so here is a little piece of me getting a little bit personal.

It's about a journey, a journey that I have taken recently. A very difficult journey that has changed me so much that I am not sure how much I recognise myself any more. Change for the better I might add, change I never new was possible because I sure can be stubborn. Yes there is lots and lots of the old me still right inside there *poking at my chest* and maybe I should be saying that I have not so much changed as grown. Yeah I know this sounds cheesy but it's like a flower blossoming, enjoying the sunshine. 

Fourteen months ago I gave birth to my beautiful son. I felt a whole lot of love but I also felt a whole lot of fear and trepidation as I entered into the whole new world of motherhood. I wanted to be the perfect mother, the perfect mother who needed no one. The problem is I have never been a mum before and babies don't come with instruction manuals. I think even if I had done this amazing parenting course where I felt so prepared, I know that nothing could have prepared me for holding real life in my arms. A small, dependant, baby boy who I knew needed me. In those first weeks it was just me and daddy and baby and it was hard. The midwives felt it was important to come nearly every day in those first few weeks but it did not help that each one tended to offer different advice none of which seemed to make a difference anyway. I struggled with breastfeeding and I was struggling as a mum. My son has a great dad and he's a great hubby and with a good health visitor offering support I managed to find my way through. 

By 6 months I felt it was time to start finally looking for a job having been unemployed for so long. I was struggling just being a mum and I did not want this label to completely take me over no matter how much I knew I loved my son.  When I was offered a position as a Social Worker with a local council I was over the moon as I was actually getting to use the degree I had worked so hard to get a year before. It was hard at first and as everyone said I thought it would get easier. It was the best for all of us. It wasn't just the constant late nights it was also the heavy emotions I was bringing home at the end of the day that was just gradually wearing me down. Slowly it got difficult to get motivated to get up and go in the mornings. I usually managed to skip lunch and was just eating a lot of crap. I went to a training session and we had to think about what we did to have time for ourselves and I could think of nothing. I was feeling sick and tired.  I think there is a saying that goes how can you help others if you can't help yourself. Eventually I was sent home from work and went to my GP where I was signed off work with stress.

That GP appointment was scary but such a relief as I felt I had some space to breathe again. I have a great GP which really helps and she has really listened to me and given me mini counselling sessions every time I have seen her. On the first visit when she mentioned medication I honestly started to cry. It suddenly became so real to me that something was wrong. I now had to go and tell my family and it took a lot of time before I could even admit it to my friends. It should not have surprised me that everyone was supportive. The worst person judging me was myself. Getting healthy was also not just about taking this little white pill. I have started speaking to a counsellor once a week. This was a battle in itself, really opening myself up. I am now really concentrating on speaking openly and honestly with everyone. I am learning to nurture my friendships with others as I can't go on trying to do everything on my own. It's been really important to me to spend time with family and when they offer me support, say yes.

Here I am 3 months later. I am still off work. I tried to go back after 5 weeks but when I arrived at the office I was fighting so much panic that it was hard to keep the tears at bay. I was not ready and now I am not sure if I will ever be ready. I know I want to work but I had to admit to myself that this job was not for me. The battle for me was to admit this and realise that it did not mean I was failure. I have never before not seen something like this through to the end, never thought about giving up a job without other options in the wings. That is another big part of this journey to admit that it's not about giving up, it's about learning and admitting that some things are not meant for me without being ashamed.

For a long time I have not had a pretty image of myself and I am still working on that. I have had a lot of negative thoughts and emotions swirling around me and I guess being a new mum, starting a new job, being a good wife just finally brought it all to a head. What it's meant is that I have finally admitted and confronted the negativity. I'm getting better, I'm recharging my batteries. This journey though is far from over and being open about it actually makes the journey a lot easier.

Friday 20 April 2012

The Friday Song Choice

Well it was carnival time in Jamaica and I've been enjoying seeing all my friends in the pictures revelling...it's been a long time since I got to do some proper whining and grinding...I can only smile at the memories...

Wednesday 18 April 2012

Easter that was...

A whole lot later and I finally get to write about what was our Easter. It's funny how time kind of runs away from you. Our Easter was all about happiness....To be honest I was kind of self medicating. It was the best idea and best cure ever.

The boss got to spend lots of time outside with his Nonni which is his favourite thing. Actually by the end of the holiday all he wanted was his Nonni. I had this new found freedom which I had not had in a long time. I think this was the first time that I probably completely just let him go.

This holiday was all about spending time with family, not just having fun but letting them support us.

This holiday was about seeing friends we felt like we had not seen in forever. It was about all our boys spending time with each other.

and well what is Easter without chocolate!

Saturday 7 April 2012

The Lunatic by Anthony C Winkler

This book was a recommended to me to read by my Uncle. It is a worthy recommendation and you seriously need to read it. Trust me what I am asking you to do is not hard, it's an easy read in that this book is so fluid the way it is written that it is one of those you can seriously read in a day...seriously!!! Ok granted I am on holiday at the minute and suddenly have lots of free time as the grandparents look after the Boss but seriously you will find the time to read this book. I don't know why at first I thought it was going to be this rather serious philosophical book that I would have to fight my way through (maybe it was the picture on the cover) but instead what I found was that this book got it's message across in a rather hysterical way. So maybe I was not laughing out loud (okay I wanted to) but I was certainly smiling to myself a lot. I loved what I can only refer to as the "Jamaicanisms" in this book. It's a story about madness, a lot of sex or shall I say "pum pum" and a rural Jamaica that will have you begging for more.

I encourage you to read it...seriously!

Friday 6 April 2012

The Friday Song Choice

I guess this song may need a little bit of explanation but for some reason it was one of the first songs I thought of when I woke up this morning. You can get these little books in Italy that have the lyrics of the song and it's animated accordingly and they come along with the CD.  
One of the interesting ways we teach our son Italian. We just happen to be in Italy now. He is being spoilt rotten by the nonni and loving it. I'm loving it as I have not had this much freedom for me in a long time. This one's for the kids....

Wednesday 4 April 2012

The Gallery: At Peace

So these past few weeks I have been a bit lost. It's been hard to find a place where I feel truly at peace. I have gotten really good at wearing a mask, smiling when I know I should, doing what I know others expect of me. So this weeks theme at Sticky Fingers The Gallery I knew would be hard for me. Then on Sunday morning while walking to Church with my son sleeping in his pram I was able to enjoy the quiet and the lovely sunshine. Maybe not the prettiest of scenes or the most amazing of pictures but it was a small moment of me being at peace.

and just to make the day perfect there was nothing like an afternoon BBQ with friends around you, watching your son happy and playing to make me take of my mask and actually truly smile at peace.

Monday 2 April 2012

Autism Awareness Day

Today is Autism Awareness Day. It's  not really a date I have saved in my calendar. I have worked with some amazing children who are autistic and watched them grow and change, teaching me a thing or two. I have done so many training courses about Autism for my work that I am somewhat "educated" on the subject. Sometimes though it's the hearing the everyday life of living with someone who is autistic that makes it real, that teaches us, makes us ask questions, makes us want to give our support. So today I know there are many bloggers out there telling there stories but I wanted to point you in the direction of one beautiful family who means so much to me because they are part of my family. Today Deenie at Life on the J Train wrote on her facebook page:

April 2nd : Autism Awareness Day! Learn the signs. Don't be afraid or too shy to ask questions. Ask people who are living it. The more people you talk to the more you will learn. EVERYONE'S EXPERIENCE WITH IT IS DIFFERENT. Don't judge. Be compassionate. Donate. Offer to help if you can. Ask for help if you need it.

Please go and live her story for a little bit...it's worth it!

An Analogy

Watch out! I'm coming!
So my hubby has recently come up with an interesting analogy that well I just have to share.

I have been posting a lot recently about the change in my son's behaviour. I used to describe him as this happy easy going baby...well not so much now. He wriggles and squirms everywhere now refusing to keep still. He always cries now when he does not get what he wants....hmph!!!....not even a cry more like a whine and he then proceeds to lie on the floor while he puts his head down and shakes it....oh poor baby! We especially  love the way he throws everything on the floor. He will cry to have it and as soon as you give it to him he chucks it....very funny! I don't know how I always end up giving him what he wants when I just no he is going to throw it...with vehemence as well. The best is when he is eating and he purposefully spits the food out and sometimes just chucks it as well. He will point to something he wants and actually refuse to take a mouthful until you give it to him...he's just too smart if you ask me. I say that hubby is maybe a little bit too impatient and hubby says that I am maybe a little bit too tolerant. We are probably both wrong but at least we get lots of hugs and affection along this new ride (more like bribery really lol!)

So the analogy....hubby says he wanted a bull dog and instead he got a jack russell. 

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