and I find myself thinking…

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I made this while I was pregnant with Pixie… it was way too hot for her to wear! I’m hoping it will fit little Number 3.

 

What will it be like?

When I went from one baby to two, I found it a much more difficult adjustment that I had imagined. Those that read this blog will know that my number two, the Pixie, was aptly nicknamed due to her mischievous ways – both in and out of the womb… so perhaps that added to my difficulties. But there are also all the other things – you’re so used to that special 1:1 time with your first, how will you make room for another?

Some say going from two to three is an easier leap than one to two because you have already learnt to juggle, your world is larger with two children, you know that your heart truly does expand. And expand. And expand. You do have enough to give. All I can say is that only time will tell!

In the last week my mind has shifted from the I’m-pregnant mindset to I’m-pregnant-but-very-aware-it’s-not-for-much-longer. Once you hit the 30 week mark you do start to feel you’re on the final stretch. Now at almost 33 weeks appointments are being booked left right and centre – acupuncture, birth debriefing, massage. Baby paraphernalia is appearing from forgotten places in the back of cupboards. Furniture is being moved around. We stand in the centre of our small house and wonder where we will all fit. Time after 7pm doesn’t seem to exist for anything other than being horizontal.

I start to imagine a new baby: his/her smells, sounds. Warm, soft newborn skin against my cheek. The quiet darkness and isolation of the deep night. My brain is a fog of… fog… nice and warm and snuggly.

My favourite part of this pregnancy has been knowing that there will be challenges, but having the faith and knowledge that although they may be difficult, they will be short lived. Knowing how quickly things, phases and time passes is a reminder to be thankful for each moment. That is what I aim to take with me into the final phase of my final pregnancy.

headspace, balance, and other anomalies

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I am on a continual quest to find these things on my path through motherhood. Sometimes I feel it hits – voila – a moment, a space, a sensation in the air: you can breathe and stand tall and freely. A time when the toys are in baskets and the washing is semi-done, the children are fed and semi-clothed, the beds are made and we have semi-slept. You smile and they smile and on you go. Other times it’s like wading through a relentless, chaotic, burdensome day of the groundhog. Like one of those dreams where you are trying so desperately to get somewhere and you try to move your limbs, and it hurts, but you’re swimming through wet concrete, it’s sticking to your skin and pulling you backwards and downwards.

As a mother, I am forever yo-yoing between these two places and in amongst the grey matter that resides from here to there. Things are changing, nothing is stagnant. There are continually things to learn, to be, to do. It can be overwhelming.

Will we parents ever get to the other end? I think part of it is just accepting that perhaps we won’t. To find those joyous moments amongst the chaos, to hug and kiss and love our children and read them that extra bedtime story they so long for, to stay here, in the now, and not worry about what is happening tomorrow, and the next day, and the next. To remember why we do what we do, to focus on the values of family and connection, and what that means for you, and yours.

Do you know what I mean?

valentine’s day

IMG_3015Unfortunately for me, Prince Charming doesn’t believe in Valentine’s Day. Which brings me to wonder, does such a person deserve the Prince Charming title? He believes it is nothing but a marketing ploy and for as long as I have known him he hasn’t been interested in taking part. As much as I jest, I do understand where he is coming from. As we all know I dislike nothing more than big companies enticing me to buy things I don’t need. Nevertheless, when it comes to Valentine’s Day and creating family traditions with the girlies, I do like to take part and give it our own slant.

For the last few years we have celebrated Valentine’s Day as a time to think about the people in our life that we love and celebrate the friendships we have. Last year Birdie made [a version of] these yarn love heart cards for her friends. This afternoon we are going to make salt dough ornaments (before the heat sets in from tomorrow onwards!). It just so happens I boiled up a big pot of beetroot yesterday so have plenty of reserved liquid to use to dye the salt dough. You can also find plenty of other ideas here and here.

I may not be getting an enormous diamond on Friday the 14th. But despite the unfortunate materialistic nature now associated with Valentine’s Day, we can still use it to remember what it really stands for, and use it as an opportunity to teach our children to show appreciation and love for those close to us.

How do you like to celebrate Valentine’s Day?

 

this time, one year ago

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You were cradled in my arms, all bunchy and squished. We were in bed. I was most likely eating something. (Food tastes so good in the days following childbirth, don’t you think?) We were surrounded by loving family. We were at home.

A few hours earlier I felt your soft hair flowing through my fingertips under water, moments before I held you for the very first time and felt your skin against mine. I looked down in surprise to find you were a little girl, not a wee boy as I had thought during my pregnancy (due to nothing more scientific than a dream three years prior).

Well my darling pixie babe, you have been full of surprises this past year, some which have delighted, others which have perplexed your tired mama.

Your lively nature and determined spirit is contagious. You make us laugh each and every day. You squark and kick your legs when you don’t get your own way and we all know better now than to refuse your commands. We simply obey. We cuddle you at night and touch your face and kiss your cheeks. We rub your tummy and feed you and tickle your toes and smooth our hands over your skin in the bath.

Happy first birthday my sweet, vivacious girl. My life is forever changed for the better with you in it, you bring me daily joy and a love so deep and complex and fulfilling and all-consuming that I am completely and utterly addicted to it, and to you.

We love you deeply and dearly little pixie. May your second year be just as bright as your first, and on and on.

Big love, your mama.

daily life

IMG_7234I had a realisation the other night as I was sitting on the couch in my lounge room watching (dare I say it) Big Brother on telly, a few lamps on, the baby asleep, little Birdie with her Daddy reading stories, a blanket on my lap and my fingers curled around a hot cup of tea.

Life isn’t something I’m looking forward to anymore.

It’s playing out around me, minute by minute, day by day.

I watched Birdie walk out of the room after kissing me goodnight: her little girl figure, the shape of her, her walk, her hair. Her growing hands touched the doorframe as she wandered off to bed.

I had that momentary shock that you sometimes get if you allow it to come. The shock that never ceases to shock: I produced that, she’s mine, there is something where there was once nothing.

When I was a teenager I used to long for the day I had a family of my own and a house and a dog and a car and a bank account and could eat what I wanted and do what I wanted when I wanted and was officially Grown Up.

Now the day is here, yesterday, today, tomorrow.

I sat on my couch and felt intensely happy.

Despite the house being a mess. Despite feeling sick. Despite being tired.

I was happy. I am happy. I am in the middle of the life I so looked forward to. It’s not perfect. There are stressors. There are desires and stumbling blocks. There are arguments and moments of annoyance and frustration.

But in amongst it, stripping it away, taking away the bullshit: here I sit. With a hot cup of tea, a roof over my head, two beautiful children and the best husband I could imagine.

Now after you have finished gagging, I dare you to strip away the crap and the bills and the dirty washing and the toddler pinching your leg and screaming in your ear and see what you are left with.

I hope whatever it is, it’s full of love and raw happiness.