More than just the crumbs.

Most have their ‘me time’ at night, when you have no energy left. You’re giving yourself crumbs which is why you spend it scrolling or watching. My ‘me time’ should be when i’m at my best...png

Do you know who Rachel Hollis is? DO YOU KNOW WHO RACHEL HOLLIS IS? Yes, I was emphatically asking you that question.

I don’t know which instagrammmer it was but someone along the way in the last 6 months snapped a picture of them reading the book “Girl wash your face” by Rachel Hollis. Linked here at Amazon and here at Amazon Australia.. go buy it now..don’t wait just buy it. There are great parts to the book and not so great parts (like with every book) but I can absolutely tell you that it has changed my life!

If you know me in person you’ll know that since the birth of baby number duos I have lost a lot of weight.. I’m talking like 45 pounds/20kgs+.. I totally credit my weightloss to two really really hard but rewarding things:

  • The Sweat App- The program BBG by Kayla Itsines gave me that spark I needed to actually start exercising in the comfort of my own home because like legit, who has the time to go to the gym more than twice a week.. especially with 2 kids under 5.. it’s not going to happen.. Did I mention that my husband was training for a marathon while and after I gave birth? Hello 2+ hour runs..

and

  • Reading Girl wash your face by Rachel Hollis- I don’t remember much of the book to be honest (I’ve started re-reading it) but one thing that I do remember is her saying something to the effect of- “if you plan to workout (at any certain time) and then you decide not to or get too busy you are breaking a promise to yourself.” We can’t handle it when other people let us down or break promises to us why is it okay for us to break promises to ourselves? This simple statement got me through those times where I thought 9pm was too late to workout or putting on gym clothes at 6am when I was so exhausted. Just a year before I probably broke promises to myself multiple times a week- now, it’s rare if I go a day without a run or 28 minute workout.

While I know these two things may not work for everyone they worked for me.

One morning last week I jumped into the car and on a whim decided to check if Rachel Hollis had a podcast. I figured- she’s cool and hip and speaks really well- she’s bound to have a podcast.. and lo and behold she did!

Hello most recent episode called “How to supercharge your morning routine.” I think someone came to my house and looked in our room every morning. I drrraaaggggg myself out of bed about 45minutes before I need to leave the house. I am exhausted you guys.. Reagan is a good sleeper unless she’s sick or teething which has pretty much been our lives the past month. Thank the Lord for my amazing husband who has bared the brunt of this- he has fed her and changed her at unGodly hours of the morning (or night.. it’s all a blur to me). Without him I would have lost my mind.. legitimately lost my mind.

Anyway I digress- “how to supercharge your morning.” You guys.. she drops truth bombs for about 45 minutes straight. The biggest thing that stuck out for me was when she talked about “me time.” At first I scoffed.. “me time”.. she obviously doesn’t have little children because there is no “me time” only “slave time”. But guys she’s onto something.. she talked about how we’re only giving ourselves crumb me time.. as in, our “me time” generally happens at the end of the day after we’ve worked all day, taken care of the kids, showered and fed everyone etc which is why our ”me time” usually involves Netflix or scrolling through Instagram for an hour.. we’re running on fumes by the time we get our time. She suggests moving ‘me time’ to first thing in the morning. Right off the bat.. wake up 1-2 hours before you actually need to wake up and do something that sets your soul on fire!

Guys, I’m going to do it. If words had ever slapped me in the face this was the day.

I can only imagine how hard it’s going to be tomorrow morning but you know if Rach can do it so can I! Haha..

Heart Whispers

Ramblings from when we first brought Reagan home… (and I never posted for fear of judgement)

A bird lands on the pram next to me as I watch my eldest play in the sand. A quick flick of my hand and the bird flies away. I grab the cap for my youngest’s pacifier- would birds think it’s food? Not sure, but I don’t want to take the chance. I make a mental note to sanitise my hands after touching the handle of the pram.

Her voice cuts through the millisecond of silence- “faster mumma, I want to go faster.. The slide, I want to go on the slide”.. I’m brought back to reality and slow the spinning contraption in front of me down so she can get off. I wrangle her arms around the baby strapped to my chest and lift her off. I watch her navigate through the sand towards the big slide, a little boy nearby catches her eye but he’s quite a bit younger than her, she looks away disinterested. “I want to go on the swing mumma.. the swing.. the swing..” She won’t stop till I acknowledge what she’s said. I push the pram over to the edge of the swing set and gingerly step through the sand to push her. “Higher mumma.. higher..” “Patience” I exclaim .. it sounds meaner then I wanted it to.

You wanted this.. I hear my heart whisper..

The baby on my chest stirs.. I start the mumma bounce- one hand pats her little bottom while I make the white noise “shhhhh” sound for a solid minute hoping that she lulls back to sleep. “I want to get off mumma.. I want to go on the small slide..” “Really? You just got on the swing..” I exclaim.

If you can just make it to nap time.. I hear my heart whisper.

I think in terms of hours now. 3 hours till the next bottle, 4 hours till nap time.. if I stretch bottle number 2 I can get them both to nap at the same time. Dinner is in 2 hours if I do bottle four at 6pm. If I go to sleep right this minute I’ll get 5 hours of sleep or I stay up for bottle number 6 and then get 4 hours of sleep..

You don’t have me time.. I hear my heart whisper..

I lay on the carpet, willing and coaxing my newborn to lift her head.. if she can just look to the left. I can feel the anxiety building in my chest. I’ve googled neck issues consecutive nights this week. I’ve rotated her bed, I’ve called her name- nothing seems to be working. I’ve been on a seesaw of celebration and worry. Was it something during pregnancy, maybe something I ate, maybe she was too squished in my womb.

It’s your fault.. I hear my heart whisper..

I see crumbs littering the floor beside the kitchen.. The vacuum cleaner sits beside the staircase. How are there crumbs already- I only vacuumed an hour ago. Dishes peak out from the top of the sink. I see her bright pink and orange bowl. It was used to house a chocolate biscuit but really only held for decoration. Chocolate crumbs scatter the couch- I say a quick prayer that she didn’t smoosh the chocolate into the fabric.

You can’t keep this house clean.. I hear my heart whisper..

We have dinner guests tonight..as our guests file through the door my eldest runs over to her sister and with a “ta-da” pose exclaims- “Here’s my bubba! She’s such a cute bubba!” I feel tears prick my eyes.. “This is her dummy and her bouncer..This is Baby Raegan..”

These are your girls..I hear my heart whisper..

I stir from sleep, reaching for my phone- it’s 6:05am. I feel a weight near my legs and look up to see my eldest with her Eeyore teddy leaning into the bassinet. A moment of panic sets in until the silence is broken by her little voice “Eeyore.. this is Baby Raegan..” Hello.. hello.. hello baby.. mmwwaa..” I’m lulled back to sleep by her voice introducing Fluffy Bunny..

She has such a kind heart.. I hear my heart whisper..

It was new but familiar..

IMG_2335.JPGFor my daughter Ava it was love at first sight. From the very first moment she met Baby Raegan she was in love. She has patted her and tickled her and loved on her non stop since the minute she met her. Raegan is the first person she asks for after her nap and the first person she invites to come along when we’re going anywhere. People told us horror stories of siblings trying to suffocate their siblings or completely rejecting them- we are so blessed that Ava hasn’t shown any of those signs.

When they placed Raegan on me for the first time I felt somewhat of a connection to her (considering we had had 9 months of bonding) however it was a different feeling to when they placed Ava on me. With Ava everything was new and profound- it was that first sunrise in a new place, the prospect of a life that we were blessed to have a front row seat to, onesies, so many nappies and bottles- everything was brand new to us- this time, with Raegan, we were comfortable with the new adventure ahead of us. It was new but familiar- we had walked this road before.

People told me that I would love my second baby the same as my first but I haven’t found that to be the case. Your first baby will always have a place in your heart reserved for that first child that made you a mum or dad, and while you don’t love them less the love feels different. If you’re a second or third time mum or dad I can almost see you nodding your head in agreement.. unless you’ve been there before you can’t really understand it. I don’t think it’s the baby blues or something other than learning to have room in my heart for this new little person that prior to the 6th of May didn’t exist outside of my womb.

I love both my girls.. just saying the plural still shocks me a little! If you’re a second or third time mum and you’re not feeling the same butterflies in the tummy, google eyed feeling with baby number 2 or 3- it’s okay.. you’re not alone!

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On a side note, if you are having difficult bonding with your baby, feeling irritable, are having thoughts of wanting to harm yourself or your baby reach out to family around you and get help!

Mum Life Lessons

img_2093I initially thought about naming this post ‘the postpartum season- not for wimps’ but decided against it considering it wasn’t very eloquent. I’ve been “on the job” for just over 11 weeks now and I find myself conflicted most days.

So.. I decided to jot down a few lessons I have learned over the past 11 weeks since becoming a new mum.. I’m sure there will be many more lessons to follow…

You don’t have to have it all together all the time

No one prepares you for the overwhelming sense of responsibility that hits you like a ton of bricks when you give birth. I remember sitting on a plastic chair in the shower after giving birth, and with tears pouring down my face I asked him “What if I’m a bad mum? What if I don’t know what to do..” I was so overwhelmed with a self-placed expectation to have it all together. When I was pregnant I very much had an idealistic view of what having a baby would be like. I’m not just talking about the birth- I’m talking about life with a baby. I read plenty of books about raising babies and sleep training. I watched youtube videos and read articles online- even with all this research there are days that I don’t have it all together and I struggle to muster up nurturing feelings towards Ava. I hope this doesn’t make me sound like a bad mum.. I would die for her, but when she is sitting in a car screaming for no apparent reason (yes, just yesterday, in stop start traffic) I struggle big time! Guess what? Ava survived yesterday.. and so did I! Life lesson- even on your worst days your baby will survive!

You may do everything right but she will still throw some of the bottle up!

The first time Ava threw up some of her bottle I cried like a baby. It was so heart breaking to watch.. since then she has probably spat up 30 or more times.. On average, if she has had 5 bottles a day, for 11 weeks that’s 385 bottles at least!!! I tried changing the way she lay, the teet, tilting the bottle, keeping her upright.. nothing seems to work.. Life lesson- I can do everything right and things will still get messy!

Worrying won’t get you anywhere

I have envisioned Ava at almost every stage of life and it terrifies me. Every time I see a teenage girl and her mum my mind races to conjure up images of what Ava will look like.. and whether her and I will be best friends like my mum and I. Will we be sitting for coffee or laughing at each others jokes.. where will we be in 12 years time? I see pictures of a father and her daughter at a wedding and I start getting teary thinking about Greg giving Ava to a man to love and cherish. The Bible says that “..all things work together for good”.. Life lesson- Rest in His peace that you are raising a good person! Invite the Lord into every parenting decision you may be facing. God has blessed us with a baby to raise so He will help us!

Don’t trust instagram

I’ve known this for a long time, but instagram is the highlight reel of most people’s lives. For every “perfect” photo there has to be 10 that are miss-matched, chaotic and imperfect! I know.. I’ve tried photographing a newborn! Don’t take everything you see at face value…Life lesson- comparison is the thief of joy..

Surround yourself with people who love you!

Having friends that will force you out of the house are friends that you should surround yourself with! Friends (and my mum) have been my saving grace these past few months! Whether it’s a coffee date, or a play date at someone’s home- community has kept me from becoming a recluse.. I cherish them! Surround yourself with people who won’t let you disappear!

This to shall pass..

Your baby will not be a baby forever. You may not be able to see it now but she will get bigger, and become more self-sufficient. If you choose to, you will go back to work and have that responsibility of helping run a business for a few hours a day instead of managing bottles and nappies. This has probably been the hardest thing for me. From working full-time and being heavily involved in our local Church to timing bottles and changing a bazillion nappies every week it’s been a very big shock to the system. I have to remind myself daily that Ava will not be 3 months old forever..haha.. it sounds very much  like common sense, but it’s hard trust me!

and last but not least.. Just because you find parenting hard doesn’t mean you’re failing at it..

Raising Ava, at this young age, comes with its learning curves- curves that will change during different seasons of her life- they will get steeper and plateau and hopefully stay manageable- as a new mum, if you’re finding it hard to process all the changes, it doesn’t mean you’re ungrateful for the blessing of your baby and it doesn’t mean your failing at mothering. It’s okay to struggle to find the new you, it’s okay if your baby is not your whole world- You can be you and a mum they don’t have to become synonymous.

Wherever you are, if you are a new mum, I hope you’ve found comfort in my ramblings.

xx

P.S Here’s a little photo dump of my growing bebé. I can’t help it..

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