Tag: new mom

Life before kids – the top 10 things i took for granted

Life before kids – the top 10 things i took for granted

I think most parents can agree that their lives changes forever when you became a mom or dad. I found my purpose, my meaning in life. I’m responsible for raising good, strong, giving future leaders. For teaching them right from wrong, for bringing smiles to their cute little faces. I love every single minute, despite how tired I am. Once in a while however, I get little “flashbacks” of things that did “BC” that I completely and utterly took for granted.

So here’s a list of some of the things that I took for granted for all of you “parents to be”.

  1. Top on my list has to be sleep. UNINTERRUPTED SLEEP! Whether it’s in a nap form on a Sunday afternoon on the couch, or in my own bed, not having to share my pillow with anyone or a Lie in (what’s a lie in?)– sleep is the one thing I will miss forever.
  2. Watching TV – Since becoming a mummy I can honestly say my TV watching has gone out the window. (I’m not referring to Barney or Paw Patrol). I’m talking about my weekly date with Greys Anatomy and consistently sitting down to watch my favourite shows. It just doesn’t happen anymore. EVER. I’m sure I’ll get back there at some stage in my life, and ill probably have to buy at least 10 box sets to catch up.
  3. “ME Time” – I’m referring to Salon visits here – Pedicures, facials are few and far between. Typically because any extra money I get is typically spent on my kids these days but also because I don’t have the free time anymore. 
  4. Hot Food and Beverages – A hot, uninterrupted mug of tea is literally my absolute favourite thing in the world. My kids have a built in sensor, it beeps every time I sit down to drink my tea. I never get a chance to sip and enjoy my hot cup of tea, in silence. Actually enjoying a long meal from start to finish. All of my meals, including dinner are typically wolfed down and of course is eaten in between cutting up food and giving mouthfuls to my two fledglings.
  5. Travel – Of course travel doesn’t have to stop once you have kids. I just took for granted how easy it is to just book a flight and travel overseas when its just you to think of. Now I have 3 other people to consider (and pay for). 
  6. Running Errands – Mundane things like popping into the store on the way home to boy milk or paying bills at the post office. I always have little people around which involves car seats, “mummy can I have this sweet” or “how long will this take. Enjoy running your errands in peace if you can 🙂
  7. Going to the Shopping Mall – I literally only do this as an absolute last resort if my kids are with me, or if I have back up. I miss strolling through Zara looking at the latest fashion or spotting a cute pair of heels. Nope, none of that now
  8. Lazing by the pool – I used to love lying by the pool, feeling the sun on my skin and closing my eyes. Drifting off on my Lilo. I can’t close my eyes for a minute with my boys by the pool, never mind the fear of drowning, they love splashing me with water !!  
  9. Date Nights – Date Nights were never really “Date Nights”, they were just nights out. Going for a movie or grabbing a dinner after work. I miss that bonding time I had with hubby.
  10. My Parents – from the moment I gave birth I realized just how much I needed my mommy. I am so incredibly grateful and appreciate my mom and dad so much more since becoming a parent. All the sacrifices they made for us, all the times I asked for a chocolate or Fizzy drink whilst shopping. The incredible childhood they gave me, I will never ever take them for granted again. 

I know there will be a time in my life where I get all of this back, and I am certainly not complaining at all. I cherish my children more than life itself, I just thought it would be a nice little reminder for any parents to be to enjoy all the little things; before your lives are turned upside down with sweet kisses and sticky fingers.

Returning to work after baby – tips to help you through

Returning to work after baby – tips to help you through

Returning to work…. Three simple words to send a feeling of dread down any new mothers spine … The cause of stress, anxiety and a few grey hairs I’m sure. We can all agree it’s a painful time. Mum guilt is real.

In South Africa we are not as blessed as our European colleagues who can get up to one full year off, though we are a great sight better off than moms in the USA, who typically receive NO paid maternity leave. But at 3 months old, You have just started to bond with your baby, your cute little cherub is actually starting to show some signs of personality and independence. You have just begun to learn your baba’s cues, yet suddenly you’re preparing to leave them with a caregiver of some sort. It’s completely understandable that’s it’s so stressful.

Coupled with the nerves of leaving your baby behind, you also have to deal with your position at work. Will things have changed? Did your colleagues manage your work load smoothly, or did they do it better than you perhaps?

Heres a little advice I can give, based on experience, to help you through.

This too shall pass. Actually, that may become one of my life’s motto’s. It gets easier with time.

Millions of women go back to work after maternity leave. Breathe. You can do this!

Remember that your entire world has just changed, you are dealing with a change in dynamics at home, sleep deprivation, it will take some time to get used to. Go easy on yourself.

Don’t be afraid to enjoy your own time – I can actually laugh when I say that when I went back to work with my eldest, I almost ran out of the front door that first morning. I was lucky though, I had a nanny that I trusted (and continue to trust) tremendously, and at the time, I had slightly flexible hours. I relished the fact that I could get a break from worrying about nap times and smelling of sick up. Being a SAHM is rough yoh!

Nurture your support system – It really does take a village. Make sure that you trust and respect your chosen caregiver, go with your gut and make sure you are comfortable. Ensure that your carer is comfortable with your expectations and has time to adjust to baba before hand. Make sure they know about correct dosages of Panado and signs to check in nappies.

Don’t be afraid to cry – Lets be honest, Mum guilt is VERY real! Remember though, you’re providing for your baby. You’re bringing home money that may better your child’s life. You’re are teaching your child that a woman can have a successful career outside of the home.

If you are breastfeeding don’t be shy about it – There are laws in place to protect you as a new mum. Find out from your HR department what rooms are private and available to use. I used to prop my chair up again the back of the door, because of course It didn’t lock 🙂  Car journeys are also surprisingly the best use of time for pumping. Aint nothing like a traffic jam on the way home with hard boobs 🙂 If you can invest in a great hands free kit, Medela offers a fantastic range and put your car journey to good use.

Stock up on supply – Again if you are breastfeeding you need to start at least a month in advance of building up your freezer supply. I started a bit too late and ended up working myself into a mess making sure baby had enough.

The anticipation is way worse than the reality – Its amazing how you will slip right back into the routine. While the time apart is difficult, it does make you cherish the time you do spend together.

I know from experience your baby wont “forget you”, you’ll see his/her little face light up the second you walk back in the room. Yes your baby may cry when you leave him in the morning, but it will stop, and then you’ll cry the day he doesn’t cry, but its OK, he’s comfortable. It gets easier. The time you do have is more precious and you learn to value quality. Don’t be afraid to find out if your company has flexible hours or family support. You’ll be surprised at how many South African companies are adopting a more global, adaptive structure.

If you have returned to work after baby, what tips helped you get through things?

Dear New Mummy – you are not alone

Dear New Mummy – you are not alone

Dear New Mommy,

You are not alone… These first few weeks can seem so daunting. You thought you had read every book to prepare you for the arrival of your bundle of joy, you had attended every workshop. Yet you feel so unprepared and helpless at the thought of looking after this little human. Every single gurgle or grunt you question yourself, is she too hot/ is she too cold? Is he breathing? Why is he making that grunting sound? He’s not feeding enough, he’s feeding too long. He’s not sleeping long enough, or he’s sleeping too much. She is lethargic today… You know the feeling. You feel inadequate, this is not what you expected. You feel alone.

All of these thoughts and feelings you experience are helping you develop your intuition as a mother. No, it’s not something you are born with. It’s something you develop over time, by connecting with your baby. By getting to know them and their bodies, their reactions and movements. You may cry every time you hold him, unable to soothe his cramps or crying due to sheer exhaustion. IT’S OK Mama, hold your baby, all he needs is your love.

Days turn to nights, the world outside slips further and further away. You feel “stuck”, feeding, changing, sleeping, and burping. You finally get your sleeping bundle down and place her in her crib like she is a package of dynamite, carefully loosening your fingers when BOOM. The crying starts again. Lie down, sleep with her on your chest. Sleep together. The world can wait for now. All she needs if your love.

Dear mommy, it’s exhausting I know. The broken sleep, the crying, the fear of harming your child. You can’t quite see the end and you don’t know how other mothers have done it. YOU ARE NOT ALONE. The best advice I could ever give you is take each day as it comes, each day you make it through is another day of raising a strong, healthy child. One more tick through the calendar of life. Each day that breaks your baby is another day stronger, because of you.

You will grow and develop a relationship in your OWN way, you will discover your perfect style of parenting in your OWN time. You will become a heroine, nursing night fevers and numerous amount of sick up, you will survive the days on 3 hours of broken sleep. You will become the PERFECT mother to YOUR CHILD. Your child is like no other in the world. You will develop a network of “mummy’ friends, all walking the same exhausting routine together, you will connect and grow stronger.

So listen to others if you would like, compare with friends if you wish but always know that you are in charge of your own journey through motherhood.

When you are feeling alone, staring out the window as your feed your baby for the 9th time that day, know that you are not. We are walking beside you every step of the way. Reach out to other moms, there is a whole new beautiful world of connections to help you through.

There is no other mother like you, and YOU are PERFECT to them.

My top C-section recovery essentials

My top C-section recovery essentials

If you follow my blog I’ve written numerous articles on pregnancy and essentials for newborns. I’ve also written about my V-Bac experience. I haven’t really focused on my C-section as such because well, apart from being last minute and completely unexpected it was uneventful I guess. What you would expect from a C-section. Continue reading “My top C-section recovery essentials”