So, living in New Zealand I’m way too far from my parents and my parents in law.
I came on holidays to Spain for a month and stayed on my parents house (mi childhood house)
Garndpas love my kid, but they are not use to him, to him running around, asking them (in his lebguge) for something, taking them by the hand to go somewhere….
But is lovely how they sacrifice and they do…
My mom will cook anything anytime for him, even if she is about to have a nap, she will stay awake the whole time is she is babysitting, to make sure everything is ok.
My dad will go for a walk around the house a thousand times if the little one grabs his hand and asks him to.
Plans and things to do
Para la versión en español, pincha aquí
I have a kid, and as most of you parents, one of my biggest fears is The Internet…
¨Will I be able to protect my kid for all the dangers out there?¨ ¨Will I be able to teach him the right use of it?¨ ¨How will I do it?¨
¨How will I do it?¨
Well, not too long ago, I found out about Lifelock a company that specializes in identity thief protection. They are doing a lot to keep kids safe online with their Smart talk site, so I decided to do a bit of research about it and start working on it.
Having a younger brother (11 years younger than me to be specific) I worried about this issue some time ago, I remember that internet was in every single house and my little brother started to demand using it. I asked my parents how they were going to make sure my brother didn´t have any trouble using it (as I felt like a mum and I wanted to make sure he was protected).
They said they were going to use some simple rules and a great talk:
- Talk to him and inform him about all the dangers that the online has.
- Talk to him to let him know that he can always come to us (parents) and let us know if a something messy is going on.
- Put in writing some rules to follow:
- Manage the time he spends online.
- Limit the access to certain websites.
- Random check on the history
¨Simple rules and a great talk¨
Well, some of you might think this is something that must happen between parents and kids that are about to start using internet, but sometimes is not that obvious. That is why ¨The Smart talk¨ is a great tool and a fantastic starting point.
I now, have a little boy and I think that is a great idea what this website has put together. If you go to https://thesmarttalk.org/#/ you can have that ¨talk¨ with your kid and make sure everything is understood before starting using some devices.
You will find some questions that need to be answered between your little one and yourself as parent. And the best thing is that you will do it together.
When you finish answering all the questions, you have the option to print it and stick it on the fridge, so is never forgotten.
I really believe that this website is a great beginning when one day, your kids come home from school, asking you to get them a device or internet connection because all their friends have them.
It gets that talk happening easier and cooler than on a traditional way, making your kid part of the decisions instead of feeling that you are imposing all your ideas leaving him out of the loop.
The way used is so approachable that the kids´ mind is way much open so it is easier to make them understand the dangers, rules, use and everything surrounding internet and some devices.
My kid is actually starting to exteriorize his own thoughts and sooner than later he will come home asking for this, but I will be prepared for it as now I know the best tool to get into an arragement with him… A tool that will keep him safe and that will keep me confident thinking about his safety.
So… let’s talk about others… We are all different in many ways but when kids are involved… OMG! the box of Pandora opens. Every mom is different, but I am sure you can be classified in one of the styles mentioned below or maybe, you have a mix of a few of them.
As you know, I am a mom, but I can’t believe how mums can be sometimes… we don´t realize that most of new mums are as lost as we were when we had our little one and that they, most of the times, only
need support and not orders and critics.
First type of mom that I found around the world is the ¨Show off mom¨.
This is the kind of mum that will tell you how good is her baby because she/he never vomits, she/he is never sick or because she/he poops at the same time every morning…
So what? Mine poops whenever he wants so he keeps life interesting and exciting, you never know when an explosion could happen.
Those are the mums that are proud about things that are out of our control, because let’s be honest, a baby will poop whenever she/he feels like it (and as soon as you get him a clean nappy)
Then we have the second style, the mums that give you advise constantly (even if you haven’t asked for it).
You might be thinking, what´s wrong with that? Who doesn´t like to improve if they are doing something wrong? Well, what is not ok when the way they use to tell you things makes you feel you are the worst mom on Earth, even if they are trying to help…
That is why I call them ¨bad feeling moms¨ (because every time you see them you go home having a bad feeling inside you) Look at your manners women!
The third style I found is about those moms that don´t give a shit. They seem not to care about what their kids are doing, they don´t care if they are burning a building down, if they are biting another kid, if they are jumping all over someone else furniture, if they are destroying the restaurant where they are eating, etc.
I know that sometimes kids are not easy to deal with, because they grow up and they start to have their own opinions, but these kind of moms give their kids too much freedom.
I actually don´t know how those kids survive without any supervision.
That is why I call this moms ¨the Mowgli moms¨
Forth style is opposite to the last one. Moms that shout and scream to their kids for everything and panic about everything. Those moms won´t care if they shout in the middle of a coffee shop just to call their kid to come closer.
But let’s say this, is not the same to be loud than to be respected.
These mums are included in the “panicking moms style”
On the fift style we find a group of moms that is pretty relax, they don´t rush and they talk very calm to their kids. And as far as I have experienced, those kids are normally better behaved that the ones from group number four. These moms will listen to other mothers and they seem to understand each different scenario, even if they do things completely different they will respect your point of view.
That is why I call them ¨the approachable moms¨
Then we have the sixth style, the ¨sorry mums¨as they will say sorry to everyone for everything their kid does. I have to say that sometimes we can´t help it and we apologize to that person sitting in the table next to us in a restaurant because our kid is saying “hello” constantly to them. But as moms, we don´t realize that most of the time people don´t really mind those kind of ¨interruptions¨ as kids can be very cute and friendly. (Is not like you toddler is sitting on their lap and eating their food). Stop saying sorry that often!
But then we have my favourite mums, the ones that make you feel you are not going mental, and that most of things are just phases that everyone else are having, because we are all different but very similar at the same time. Those are the kind of people we need around all the time and even more when we feel down, crazy and lonely. They know how to use the right words, they don´t seem to judge you for your actions, as every mother, father, family is different and they know how to give you advise in a way that you will take it into consideration.
That is why I call this group ¨the caring moms¨
Thank you moms!!!
Then I found the last type of moms, the ones that have read every single book, internet article and paper. This isn’t right or wrong, but they can find you and answer to every single question and doubt you could have. That is why I call the the “handy mums” because they can inform you about everything you don’t know about pregnancy, motherhood or kids in general.
So, knowing all these different styles, I can say that I’m quite of a mix of a few ones, as sometimes I find myself saying sorry too often but being emphatic and trying to understand other moms in different scenarios. But I’m not saying that I have never critisiced anyone else, I’ve done it (a bit more before having my own kid) now that I have one and I’m experiencing what is it like, I have to swallow my words.
That’s one reason why I’m writing this blog, so mom’s don’t get judged for everything they do, because believe me when I say… This isn’t easy… at all!
Para la versión en español, pincha aquí Multitasking
In one of my short and last trips to Brisbane, I catch up with my good friend Cecilia. She has a baby girl a bit younger that my kid. We end up talking about the very beginning and reminding those moments when our babies were just born and we had to feed them ever 2 hours.
We were laughing because we recall doing everything just with one hand.
You spend a lot of time with your little one by yourself, cuddling him, feeding him, getting him/her to sleep… and he/she starts to be an extension from your body.
I remember one time when I went to have breakfast. I ordered a juice, a coffee and a yummy full breaky… BIG MISTAKE! I had the juice without any problem and then my coffee, but when the food arrived… OMG! I had the little one on me because it was feeding time, so how was I going to eat all that food?
Well, I can tell you that I end up eating every single piece on the plate, but it was also a great scene to watch…. I also can’t erase the look on the face from the man siting next to me. He was looking at me like, “OMG, she is a super woman” (I could not be more agree)
That is why, when a new mom to be asks me for advice, I always say that while you are pregnant it’s great if you can cook some meals and get them in the freezer, so then when you are by yourself with the new born, you won’t need to be cooking.
Also, having healthy snacks that get you full energy is another option (fruit, veggies cashews, almonds and similar are a very good idea)
So all moms around the world, keep yourself healthy and full of energy to get through those sleepless nights! YOU ARE DOING GREAT!
Para la versión en español, pincha aquí Primeras veces
Well, this topic is a bit melancholic, it is a bit sweet and sour, but what can I say? Every time my kid discovers, does or says something for the first time makes me super happy, but it also makes me realize that the surprise on his face from his discovery means is growing up.
I was thinking about writing a post just dedicated to the very first words my kid said, but then I thought about all the other things he is doing and experiencing for the first time and I couldn´t resist.
I remember that at the very beginning, when he was a new born, he was only sleeping, eating, popping, reset… Sleeping, eating, pooping, reset… the most exciting thing that happened was one night, when we run out of clean cloths and we had to dress him with a pair of socks, a big t-shirt and the nappy.
But as soon as he started to be just a little more independent, he started to discover a whole world of opportunities and amazing things.
He first discovered his hands… OMG he was just sitting there, looking at his hands, amazed by the move of the little fingers, licking them like if there was no tomorrow!
And what do you think I was doing??? Well, I was hiding just behind him, recording everything with the camera and with a huge smile on my face, bigger than Julia Robert´s.
Then he discovered his feet, he was also tasting them, just to make sure he wasn´t missing anything good in life, you know… (¨thanks God he isn´t walking yet¨ I thought by that time)
I still remember the first time he smiled, the first time he laughed, the first time he said ¨mama¨, the first time he said ¨papa¨ or when he started crawling…
And then I realized how innocent, healthy and good kids are. When they are this little, they don´t do anything to bother, they just do it without thinking any further, they just do it without thinking about the consequences.
It´s amazing how they really enjoy little and simple things.
I was in love, but watching him experimenting new things made me be madly in love.
In my case, there is also something that fills me with joy. Having lived overseas and going to a bilingual daycare, it is incredible when my kid comes home ¨talking¨ in two different languages (even if it isn´t very clear, us moms develop the same language that our kids talk and we can understand them to perfection)
But I also remember one time that we went to the beach to watch a competition. We prepared some sandwiches and snacks. And I remember feeling so proud looking at my kid, standing there, eating the sandwich all by himself.
Nowadays, we are starting with potty training. The first time he pee in the toilet I was almost crying! How can something that basic, that adults do every day, be so exciting when it is a ¨first time¨?
And I have to admit, I´m jealous of my kid sometimes. That purity and innocence that only little kids have.
Those discoveries that aren´t important for adults, but that mean the world to our little ones. Those first times, when we reach for the remote that daddy doesn´t let us touch, when we learn how to splash in the bath, when we try an ice-cream and is cold, when we pat a puppy, when we bite a lemon and it´s sour, but it doesn´t scare us, we just want more, more ¨first times¨, more first discoveries, more first adventures, that make us grow little by little, full of hope, leaving a smile on our face and lovely memories.
Para la versión en español, pincha aquí La mama mas feliz de la Tierra
A few weeks ago I was contacted by ¨The Honest Company¨ (https://www.pinterest.com/HonestCompany/) and they suggested me to write about my experience ¨feeding a new born¨
I thought about it and realized that it was a great idea so I started working on it.
I remember that after 16 hours of labor, as soon as my baby was born I was the proudest and happiest mom on Earth. After all that effort my little one had just gone through, he knew exactly where to go to get his food.
He seemed to be able to attach properly and because of all of the oxytocin and emotions from the birth it didn´t hurt at all. I was so happy!
After this, I went to sleep and so my newborn. The next time I nourished him was the next morning. He seemed to be getting something, but it was hurting too much. I remember one midwife coming over to tell me that I had to sit straight and try to relax my body, something that I couldn’t do as it was to painful.
I thought that this was going to improve as soon as we arrive home.
That same day, after less than 24 hours since my baby was born, I went home and I remember that even being in the same house as two days before, everything felt new. New sleeping routines, new feeding routines, new feelings, a new whole little person in our life that didn´t come with a manual and that demanded milk every two hours… A new beginning.
Around the third day at home, all the milk came up to my boobs. My body was ready to feed my little newborn.
But when feeding time approached, I just wanted to cry… in my personal experience, this wasn´t the bonding moment with my baby that I had heard about so many times.
I remember siting and trying to think about something relaxing while he was trying to attach, but my body could only stay tense from top to toes.
It was clear that my baby wasn´t attaching and I didn´t know what else to do to make it happen. I was very frustrated. ¨Why wasn´t I able to provide the basics to my baby?¨
After some time, this got us into a situation where the little one cried more often as he was hungry and I got a big mastitis (something that I do not wish anyone to have).
I was discouraged, sad and couldn’t really enjoy the time with my new born.
After a while trying and not improving, as my nipples were also bleeding, we decided that buying a ¨pump¨ was a good option to consider. So we did buy one.
It wasn´t hurting anymore, but it was taking a bit more of time for sure.
This was pretty easy when my mom and husband were at home with me, they were in charge of helping with the bubba, they were in charge of feeding him while I was expressing, and they were in charge of cooking to make sure I was getting enough energy in my body and food in my belly.
But after they were gone, this wasn´t sustainable anymore. I was spending far too much time pumping myself, feeding the baby, changing his nappy and getting him to sleep and doing other things that I had to do all by myself. This situation didn´t left too much time for me (to eat, shower, clean, relax, enjoy a cuppa or anything…)
Before my mom left I started to freeze all the remaining milk that the baby wasn´t drinking, because as most of us know, new borns have a very little stomach.
So that way I had provisions just in case I needed them anytime.
I know breastfeeding shouldn´t have been painful, I have been told that way too many times, but I didn´t find the right help or I probably was so lost that I didn´t even know where or how to ask for it.
Now when I look back I just think to myself ¨Don´t be silly! If this ever happens again, ask questions Laura… ask as many times as you need to, ask to as many people as you feel like… ask you mom, other moms, your midwife, your doctor, friends…¨
Just a few days before my mum went back to Spain, I talked to her as I was feeling down and miserable. My husband wasn´t coming back home in another fifteen days and my mother was also leaving. I was going to be with the baby all by myself and I wasn´t sure I was going to be able to keep feeding him this way all alone.
¨Why not trying formula?¨ I thought to myself.
Then is when casually I had a doctors appointment (to check that my stomach muscles where going back to where they belong) perfect timing to be honest.
There I found a genuine, kind and a good listener professional, that didn´t impose any option and that didn´t judge me… And he spent the time I needed to go through my situation.
I talked to him and shared my feelings… I remember my eyes very watery.
He suggested me to try formula. He agreed that breast milk helps to immunize the baby, but he said that for a baby to grow healthy there are also other things to consider… The baby also needs a fit and healthy mother to look after him.
There is when I opened my eyes, I needed to be that fit mom for my baby!
As I have said many times before, I am not trying to say one way of feeding a baby is better than the other, but every single person needs to consider their personal circumstances and what’s best for mother and child. In my personal experience breastfeeding or pumping milk didn´t work out, so I changed to formula to make the situation improve. And it did.
I arrived home. I called my husband and he supported me with any decision I was taking. I told my mom and she said exactly the same.
That evening I took the tablets to stop the milk flowing and cried… And so I did the next day, I cried…
I was feeling the worst mother ever.
But now when I look back, I realized that I was actually being the best mom I could. I was worrying about my new born well being and I was making the right decision for both of us: he was going to have milk in his stomach to make sure he was growing healthy and I was going to be mentally fit to look after him and happy to enjoy all the little moments.
I started feeding him formula once a day and using the frozen breast milk for the other feds. After a few days I increased the feds of formula and started reducing the ones of breast milk. I kept doing that till I run out of my frozen breast milk.
After a while, he started demanding milk every three hours and then every four.
Midwifes guided me in how much milk he was meant to drink and how often, something really useful.
He also started sleeping longer hours during the night, what allowed me to rest and wake up ¨full¨ of energy (as full as you can when you have a baby)
Basically, now that I was feeling happy I was able to invest my time enjoying him. So is then when we started to know each other… I started to know when he was hungry, I started to know if he wanted more milk… And I started to enjoy all those small moments, like when he was falling sleep while sucking from the bottle… He looked so cute! He was so tired but didn´t want to give up his milk.
And I was happy, very happy… Just like when he attached at the very beginning when he was born…. I was having that same feeling again… I was the proudest and happiest mom on eart
Para la versión en español pincha aquí El origen…
What a coincidence, writing this post around mother´s day, that is when, two years ago I found out that I was pregnant. The very beginning…
I remember when my husband and I started to talk about having a baby.
It was something that we both wanted, but never really talked about it ¨very seriously¨.
One day, I went to the ladys´doctor and she started asking me heaps of questions like… ¨What are you using not to get pregnant?¨, ¨Are you thinking about having a baby?¨, ¨Are you in a serious relation?¨
I don´t know how did it happened, but she ended up giving me a brochure with information about ¨what to take in consideration if trying to get pregnant¨
And then is when I started ¨very seriously¨ to picture me with a baby.
After reading it, I left the brochure on the kitchen table as I wanted my husband to see it.
I have always wanted to have babies so when my husband arrived from work, he thought that I asked the doctor about this on purpose.
We talked about it that date, saying out loud what we were both thinking, we both wanted to be parents so we started trying…
After just 2 months, I got pregnant.
I remember that one day, just a few days after getting pregnant, I was in my lunch break in the office and couldn´t stand the perfume from one of my colleagues (I even had to turn around)
Then, a few days later, my body was asking me to eat something salty… I even thought about going to the kitchen and just eat a pinch of salt, don´t judge me I didn´t have anything else around)
One night after this, I was watching TV with my partner and my boobs… OMG! they hurt sooooo much, but I didn´t take it into consideration.
Then is when on a Saturday in May (just before mother´s day) I was laying in bed and started to Google ¨How to know if you are pregnant¨ and then I read something that made me think I was… ¨Just before menstruation, your body craves sweet, but when pregnant, it normally craves salty¨, then I read about ¨sore boobs¨ and ¨feeling nauseated¨ so I added all of them up and realized that I was pregnant.
I went food shopping and when going through the ¨health and care¨aisle I saw the pregnancy tests. They were just calling my name.
I was so nervous and excited that I just took the first one that my hand could reach and put it in my shopping basket.
I went home and I could feel that I was getting more and more excited about it. When I took the box out of the shopping bags I realized that I had bought 3 pregnancy test (it was a box with 3 of them inside). Well, if you think about it it wasn´t that bad, at least I was going to make sure that the result was the same 3 times.
Then I thought, ¨Should I wait for my husband?¨
He was working but coming home at lunch time.
I waited for a little bit, but the butterflies inside were getting into my nerves and I couldn´t wait any longer.
I took one of the sticks out and pee on it. It said you had to wait for ten minutes, so I went into the shower to try not to think about it.
Those ten minutes were looooooooongggggg.
I looked thought the shower glass and I could see there was some pink color showing in the stick. I started cleaning the glass to be able to see clearly.
OMG! I couldn´t believed, after only 2 months trying I was pregnant.
I was so happy that I started dancing and singing while finishing showering. I was even talking to the future baby inside me.
I came out of the shower and dressed up as I had to go pick up my husband from work in a very short time.
Then I thought using another pregnancy test, ¨Why not using a second one to make sure the prediction is right?¨ I thought.
So that is what I did. Second one… same result. OMG! This was real! Yihaaaa!!!
I went into the car and head to my husbands´work. Those fifteen minutes, were the longest fifteen minutes of my life. They seemed like one hour, at least.
I finally arrived and picked him up. I didn´t want to tell him while I was driving, but my smile and excitement was so big that I couldn´d wait.
He was in shock, in a good way. He couldn´t believe that what yesterday was just a thought and a plan for the future, today was real, it was happening… We were going to be dad and mom.
Para la versión en español, pincha aquí MuchoMasQueSuficiente
Well, well, well… this is a very tricky subject… Postpartum…
Uhm… I don’t think I would call it “postpartum”. I would rather call it… “Craziness”, “New era”, “I don’t know what the fuck am I doing” or “Am I good enough endless doubt”.
Do you get what I’m saying?
Yes, we all know that being a mom is an amazing experience. I love my kid and all the great and bad times that come along with motherhood. We all have been babies once and human beings have survived having even ten babies in the same family, but holly molly, you don’t really know what is all about until you have your own.
I remember when I was pregnant, going to the “preparation to birth” and other classes to the hospital. I was feeling very happy, excited and motivated about it and I was feeling a bit more ready and confident after them. But when the moment arrived, I wasn’t ready… at all!
Maybe wasn’t that, maybe I was ready but I didn’t even know where to start from, or how to start. “Why is he crying?” ,”Is he hungry?” ,”How do I bath him?” ,”Is it to hot for that pijama?” ,”Is this milk warm enough?”
I thousand questions that don´t come with a manual.
As I said on one of my latest post, I had trouble breastfeeding, but adding to that, I was very constipated and my dorsal muscles were very painful (they said because of all the effort while pushing during labor) and I only could had paracetamol to make the pain go away. GREAT!
So nothing to do with the idyllic and amazing picture from the movies.
Some people will think this is just winging without reason, but I don´t care. The time after giving birth is just a hormone party in your body.
And yes, sometimes you just feel like shit (sometimes too often) because your body is not the same, you don’t sleep enough hours, you’re feeding a new little person night and day, in my case every 2 hours, you have pain in some places you didn’t even know they existed before, because you have been stitched up (down there) and because you don’t feel sexually appealing …at all.
But even with all these going on, you still look after a human being that doesn’t know how to communicate with you in any other way apart of crying.
Some days you just think that you are not good enough! Or believe that you are going to faint, because really, what kind of person can survive sleeping those short hours a day????
But let me tell you… you are more than “good enough”, because you are there for that little baby, waking up every 2 hours (some of you even more often), because you are taking out your breast in public to feed your kid (even if you are super shy), because you are always thinking about that new person first, knowing that this could mean not having a shower in a few days, dressing the same jeans for a month or eating anything that’s available in your kitchen, yes, even that broccoli that you hate so much.
So let me tell you again, you are MUCH MORE than “good enough.”
That´s why you don’t have to worry, don’t think you are alone on this, I haven’t meet a mom yet that hasn’t told me this same story (your story, my story, our story) and if someone ever said to you “postpartum was easy and no troubles at all” BIG BULLSHIT!
But everything gets better, you will start to know your baby, she/he will start to know you, she/he will adapt to a new world and step by step your baby will start to be a little person, so if you are having one of those hard days, wash your face with cold water, put some red lipstick on, make yourself a Nutella toast and make yourself smile. Tomorrow will be a new day, and I´m sure it will be a wonderful one.
For all those mums around the world, YOU ARE MUCH MORE THAN ENOUGH!