Siblings

Published April 23, 2015 by reachandflexibility

I am one of 4 daughters. Growing up was reasonably good but there were times I wished I was an only child. School trips we couldn’t always afford, the competition for attention. The usual that comes from being a large family. There were of course the other times of company to play with and fun Christmases but mostly it was a clusterfuck of jealousy from what I remember. Especially once I entered my teenage years.

I mention all this because as Beth is now nearing a year old, the questions spring up of “do you plan on having another?” or “don’t you think she would like a little brother or sister?”. I seem to be in 2 minds about the answer to give currently. If you had asked me when Beth was 12 weeks old, the answer would have been a resounding NO! Ask me now and I have to weigh up options. I was thinking over it again last night and when I asked myself the real question of “Well, why do you want a second child?” My immediate reaction was “Well, I don’t really”. That should be the answer that matters and yet why does my mind sit and think I could go through it all again?

I hated trying to get pregnant (Well I enjoyed one aspect of course) but the obsession and let down and the time it took were too much to cope with.

I hated being pregnant. The morning sickness for 30 weeks and heartburn for 32 weeks were shit. The sheer exhaustion and I cant even claim I was doing anything too strenuous. College is not difficult if you stay organised. Trying to do is all again with what would be a toddler sounds like a nightmare though.

Childbirth, The one area that most repeat mothers would dread is not a concern to me. Except for perhaps how quick it would be. That sort of freaks me out a little but not enough for me to say I wouldn’t want to do it again. Like chances are I’d either need to be in the hospital the moment a twinge happened or go for the home birth. Not something I’m too confident with.

After childbirth though is something I don’t even want to think about. The sleepless nights, the crying. Oh so much crying. The physical pain and the trying to return back to normality. And this goes on for months. Almost a year down the line and I don’t sleep properly. She may wake for a feed and if she doesn’t I wake worried that she hasn’t even stirred.  I don’t want to go through that again. I don’t want to be as depressed as I was again.

And then there are the future plans. Me learning this damn language and providing for our family properly. It will take time and energy. Something I wont have with a toddler and a new baby.

You may wonder then why I even contemplate it all again. I certainly have enough reasons not to.  It’s because looking at Beth something stirs in me. An urge to do it all again. Something I can’t explain. When she was around 6 months I finally understood the loving feeling that mothers had described. And now each time I look at her I get that same feeling. Yesterday she finally started saying mama after months of only dada. And my heart swells each time she says it. I can’t explain what I want by going through it all again. I don’t want another child. I have my perfect child. I have my little miracle. I guess this is just something primal that doesn’t make sense in today’s world. Will she have any siblings? Not any time soon. Is it even an option? More so than it was. At least in my head anyways. Maybe I just need another basset hound. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Where were we….?

Published February 16, 2015 by reachandflexibility

I was ranting last time I was online I think. I cant be bothered with ranting today. By removing myself from the parenting world I actually feel a lot better about how me and Beth are doing. I’m not scared about her progress or how I am as a mother as I have nothing to compare it to. Nothing to remind me constantly that I might be failing in some areas. It’s a good feeling. Yes they suggest the groups for support but if anything, they just made things worse for me.

It would be nice to have the company of people sometimes but I’m terrible at conversation and as much Beth is a conversation starter I don’t really want to spend all my time talking about her. It is limiting though as she really is all that’s in my life currently. Aside from pup, Kim and WoW that is. And Kim is normally the only one I’m chatting to. You’d think I’d be lonely but I’m not. I’ve never been very good with people. There are times where I want to be surrounded by life of course but to actually converse with people. I’d rather pass.

If anything I want the opposite of parenting groups right now. I want non parents. I want to go out for a meal or a drink and talk about movies and video games. It’s not a cry for my old life but a cry for some sort of individuality at the moment. Our paperwork finally came through meaning a trip to the capital this week and from there my language lessons. It’s going to be so nice finally having my own little life again. I love Beth to bits but I really can’t wait to be by myself doing something worthwhile. Selfish of me? I don’t think so. I think it will do us both good. So far the only people she ever sees are me and Kim. It’s going to be an interesting day the first time she’s left at a creche.

She loves Kim to bits. As much as I do almost. We both wish he could be here more but we understand that he needs to work as much as he does. I wish I could help out more so that he didn’t need to. I’ll find a way soon enough I’m sure. Typically it all takes time though.

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As you can see, she doesn’t approve of my antics…

Judgemental mothers

Published January 27, 2015 by reachandflexibility

Today I left my birth group. 300 women some of whom I’m now friends with, left simply because I’d had enough and wanted to go alone. It seems rule one to becoming a “good” mother is to judge the parenting of every other mother in terms of “what is best with these weeks fads”,”safety guidelines from this decade and country” and “loving your child the most”. If you don’t fit under this category then you’re more likely to be like myself worrying if you fit the expectations of these perfect mothers.
Today’s reason for leaving was a girl mentioning that she was pissed off her child wouldn’t sleep and a picture of him looking like he’d fallen between the bed and his travel cot. Not the best picture to see if there was any actual danger and a poor choice of words from herself but rather than people trying to figure out the situation the comments started flying instantly about how she was a bad mother putting her baby at risk, and how dare she be pissed off at a 7month old blah blah blah…this girl has enough on her plate and had been up numerous nights in a row. She wanted support and instead got slammed down by the perfect parents.
It’s crap, these women go on about how they are there to support each other and yet in typical female fashion it turns into high school bitching. It’s not something I need in my life. I’m tired of feeling the need to justify myself for not breastfeeding, for not following each guideline to the word simply because that is this weeks safety lesson. I’m tired of being looked down on because I don’t want to co sleep or wear my child every day. I’m sick of feeling like my child is slow because they’re not sucking on a piece of toast the moment they hit 6 months. Parents are meant to act like parents, not like the children they are raising.
This has been a long building rant simply because I know I’m not the best mother in the world. I pre prepare bottles and store them in the fridge, I let her cry, rather than cuddling her if she even so much as whines. I let her watch tv *gasp* and not just babyTV but actual movies like die hard and lethal weapon. Is she happy? Yes. Is she like any normal 8 month old? Yes. Has she gotten sick at all? No. Is she fed, clean, loved? Yes.
Get off your high horses and raise your own children. Not mine.

Still going strong

Published January 8, 2015 by reachandflexibility

Beth is currently napping upstairs after a disaster of a start to the day. She decided 3,50 would be the time to get up and I don’t deal with not sleeping. I’ve not updated in a while despite meaning to. We’re still waiting on paperwork, I’m enjoying Danish food a little too much for my waistband to enjoy and Kim’s job has been made permanent.

So to update. It’s been a tough Christmas here. Kim worked 12 days straight and it was exhausting for him. Tiring for me too but that’s because I just need 23 hours of sleep to get by it seems. Like seriously my whole immune system was destroyed. Cold sore after cold sore for like a month. I’m ill with a cold right now. It sucks. Anyways we ordered all our food for the week online. That arrived a day late with only a fraction of what we ordered. Luckily it included the Christmas dinner but that was pretty much it. It rained all week and that caused the electrics to play up as well. It wasn’t much of a Christmas, we didn’t even have a tree, but it was nice to spend some time with Kim after so long of him working. Beth got lots of gifts most of which she won’t touch as they make noise and she just starts to cry when they come near her. No idea what causes it. She won’t even let me have music playing on the iPad. She’s an odd child.

We’re growing closer. I’ve started using a wrap for walks and it’s helping us both. Well helping me mainly. I get to have my arms free and I sort of feel more bonded with her. It’s made things a little better for me mentally anyways. Things are still up and down in my head at the moment. Mostly up. We have blips but that’s normally if I’m tired or it’s been a very long week. If Beth gets out of her routine then it throws me off completely and I know it will end in a day of her screaming and me crying. It’s tough sometimes but luckily that’s not happening as often as it used to.

I’m still enjoying living in Denmark. Our house is perfect even if it does still need sort of moving into. Furniture is being bought slowly but surely and its just a matter of time before it becomes more of a home to us all. I love waking up to see how the day looks out. It’s pretty grey recently but every now and again you get a clear skies morning and it makes everything that little easier. We even had snow just after boxing day. I took Beth out to see it and pup got to explore the whole new world that had landed. I look forward to it when she’s older and we can build a snowman outside the front for the hunt master to get angry about. Yeah, life is ok at the moment. It’s peaceful.

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Home sweet home

Damn good coffee!

Published October 30, 2014 by reachandflexibility

So yeah. I don’t drink coffee but we’ve moved to Denmark and the area we live in is pretty much out in the middle of nowhere. Sort of like Twin Peaks. It’s lovely though. When it’s not raining this is meaning I’m out and about walking about 6km a day with Beth and pup. I’m not trapped in the house like I was in Ireland. Pup gets to chase pheasants and sniff out hares. I get to just sit and enjoy the silence and watch the trees sway in the wind. It really is beautiful here.

The food is better, my mood is better (providing I sleep) and everything is pretty good. I look forward to raising Beth over here where she can learn about the wildlife and maybe help our neighbor some days with her horses.

I’m unsure where my future is going to take me over here though. I have to get the language down first if anything. Then I can think about things like studying or working. It’s proving difficult as I’ve never really had a talent for languages, especially speaking them. Hopefully the lessons provided will get me past this.

You know despite a big move and Beth getting older not a lot has happened. So I’ll just leave you with a picture of a sight I get to experience everyday.

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15 weeks – all change

Published September 17, 2014 by reachandflexibility

So I haven’t posted in a little while as to be honest it’s been nonstop here. I got diagnosed with pnd and put on anti depressants and also ordered to get a nights sleep once a week. Easier said than done of course. But despite only being on the pills for a short while and then stopping cold turkey I’m feeling really well. I still feel a little lonely at times but I’m trying to find ways to reach out to people.
Beth is now over 15 weeks old and still as demanding as ever. She feeds every 3 hours during the day and was doing this at night as well up until about 3 weeks ago. Now she’s sleeping 9-5 (though it’s been 4 the last 2 nights) and Kim gets up with her so I get a lie in most mornings. It’s certainly an improvement. For one thing I’m back in our bedroom rather than the spare room.
Me and are her are bonding a lot better than we were and I’m certainly growing to love her. She’s becoming a lot easier to guess what’s wrong with. My only wish right now is that I could have some time to be myself for maybe an hour a week. Seems my alone time is spent sleeping and every waking moment is with Beth. Either looking after her or cleaning up/preparing things for her. It can be a little tough at times. Hopefully things will get better with the next bit of news.
Me and Kim are finally moving to Denmark. He’s been offered a job and we’re currently on our last week in Ireland before the big move. It’s a pretty stressful time for both of us but the new house we have found is perfect for our new life and soon after the move we’ll also be getting married. New family life in Denmark as we had both hoped for for a long time. I’ll finally be learning the language properly and can hopefully start getting my dog grooming set up or maybe trying and find more training in it. I actually got a distinction over all from my college course. I was pretty impressed even if the grooming was a complete nightmare.
For now I’m just trying to pack boxes when I have my arms free. Beth is most definitely a Velcro baby at times and only naps for about 20 minutes before wanting feeding or entertaining. Not to mention pup being ever present and very curious. Ah well I better get some more done now while I have the chance.

finally a picture of my little girl. She’s about 12 weeks there 🙂

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The first law of alchemy

Published July 27, 2014 by reachandflexibility

“In order to obtain or create something, something of equal value must be lost or destroyed.”

Beth is nearly 8 weeks and although she has been reasonably calm these last few days the above quote has been flying through my head. Although unhealthy, I’ve been thinking about everything I have lost in gaining her. Everything I’ve been feeling recently can amount to 3 words.

Guilt

For not being able to love her like a normal mother would. For not carrying on breast feeding despite everything that says it’s for the best. For not running to her every cry within seconds simply because I’m too exhausted of bending to her every demand. For not being as good a mother to her as I know I should be.

Then there is guilt to Kim and pup. For not being able to give them the attention they once had. For not being able to share a bed with them both because I know caring for Beth at night will simply keep them awake. For making Kim work a job he hates simply to keep us all going. For putting him in a life he may never have chosen.

This section could go on a lot longer. Mothers are so judgemental of everything you do. If you’re not doing it to their standards or to this weeks “guidelines” then you’re selfish and a bad mother. A lot of guilt stems from this. I want to be a good mother, so why do I listen to these types?

Loneliness

I’m doing a lot of this by myself. Though Kim helps he has to work a lot of the time and the last thing he wants is to be working again as soon as he gets through the front door. I have no family here to help out and the friends I do have have little experience with babies. That’s when they actually remember I exist anyways. I spend my days in front of the TV holding Beth counting the hours until Kim gets home. There is nowhere to go where I live. No simple trip down the shops. I can’t even walk the dog easily with the pram and going out without him is not an option. I have no one to really talk to and it’s lonely. People say I should ask for help because I never do. There is no one to ask though. And even if there was, what can they do? Why even bother them?

Mourning

For the above first law. Everything I feel I have sacrificed.

Going straight back to college, walking pup casually during the day, my body or at least what I knew it to be, a fun, enjoyable sex life, my social life (or at least what there was of it), any time gaming, a full nights sleep, my identity…

I guess a lot of what I’m trying to figure out with this is who I am now. As a mother I feel like nothing. I feel like Beth is the personality and the life and I’m just the drone which sustains her. Like that guy from total recall. I feel like I’ve lost who I am and I’m mourning that as I try to figure myself out. I feel like a shadow of who I used to be. Was it an equal cost for her? I hope so.

This is just me trying to structure my thoughts before the next feed which I know will come soon. Another night of feed, nap, feed, nap. Before another day of feed, settle, feed, settle… It will get better. Just need to keep my head above the water.