Dear first time mom

Dear first time mom,

I often find myself congratulating first time mom’s, only to then say things like “Get lot’s of rest while you can” or “Breastfeeding is harder than it seems” or “I hope you’re taking antenatal vitamins” and while I’m sure hopeful you appreciate my advice, there’s some other things I want to tell you.

Enjoy your pregnancy as much as you can, because life will never be the same again. But this is a good thing. I want to tell you how amazing it’ll feel when your baby kicks for the first time. How you’ll always have one hand around your bump protecting it. How you’ll lay awake at night wandering what you’ll name your child, what colour hair they’ll have, will he/she have your eyes or your partner’s.

I want to tell you about the overwhelming surge of love that will rush through your body when you hold your beautiful child for the first time and the tears that will form in your eyes before you even realise they’re there.

I want to tell you that it’s not always easy, your emotions are all over the place and in the first few weeks post partum you may find yourself burst into tears, for no apparent reason. But then one night at 3am, while you’re feeding your baby, you’ll look down and your heart will feel like it’s about to burst with joy and love.

Your child will test your patience, find all your buttons, push them and push you to your limits but that smile, that giggle, those eyes filled with mischief, you won’t be able to resist them.

You’ll encourage your child to crawl then walk and you’ll take videos and clap with glee when they do. And then right before their 3rd birthday you’ll find yourself sitting quietly one night, with those same tears of love in your eyes because you realise your little baby is not so little anymore.

You’ll answer lots of questions, you’ll get frustrated by many of them and you may even snap when you’re over tired and cranky but when your child is sitting quietly playing with his toys and minding his own business, you’ll miss him.

While being a mother feels like an emotional rollercoaster, and your heart will quite literally hurt when you see them hurt, the pride that comes with raising a child is second to none.

So dear first time mom, be weary, be nervous but also be joyful for the best relationship you’re ever going to have.

Share the Joy linky at bodfortea.co.uk
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Being a mum

Recently, I’ve been reflecting on many of the things I love about being a mum. Some are quite obvious and lots of mums I know feel these things every day. But in the last few days S has been doing some pretty cute things that make me go “aww…”!

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I’d love to know what YOU love about being a mum. So join me on twitter (@mamaduckquacks) and hashtag beingamum (#beingamum) or comment below. Comon’ mama’s, what’s got you going “aww..” this week?

A life less ordinary #BYOM

I’ve always thought it important to live a life filled with love, laughter, wonder and have experiences to look back on, with no regrets….to live a life less ordinary. To live the best life I can live, as long as I’m living. And this so happens to be notonthehighstreet.com’s mantra.

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About 10 days ago, the lovely ladies at Mumsnet sent out an invite for bloggers to attend a glamorous event hosted by NOTHS in lieu of mother’s day on the 30th of March. I sent through my interest and was chosen as one of the bloggers. So off I went last night to the uber posh No. 5 Cavendish Square. As we entered we were offered the choice of Champagne or some really yummy Gin and Lychee cocktail. There were waiters walking around with plates of mini Halloumi Burgers, Beef Burgers and other light bites. As the evening went on they served salad, mushroom risotto and fish and chips in a bowl (really good posh fish and chips!)

The theme was #BYOM (Bring your own mum) but as mine couldn’t make it this week, I took my dear friend Anni instead. There was a wooden tree at the entrance and wooden hearts on the bar. Everyone was invited to write words of advice or a wish on the heart and hang it on the tree.

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The evening started off with Holly Tucker (Founder of NOTHS – we got to chat to her later in the evening and she was lovely) giving a brief introduction followed by a presentation delivered by Odette Toilette (who incidentally told me her name was Lizzie 10 minutes prior to going on stage?!). One of the things NOTHS are about to launch is experience days. So we’re not talking about race car driving or hot air ballooning but instead as Odette so beautifully presented, an example would be a perfume workshop. Over her 10 minute presentation, she handed out 3 different feathers doused in 3 different fragrances. One from each era. When it came to the one from the 80/90s, she had most of us in the room ooh’ing and aah’ing as we reminisced our youth: the days of hyperglobal t-shirts (yes, I had one of those), dummys on strings and trolls. As well as White Musk and Dewberry from the body shop. It’s funny how a simple scent can transport us back 15-20 years while the memories attached to that scent wash over us.

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After that we had a break to get something to eat (read: drink more champagne!) and take some funky pictures in the photo booth room. I absolutely love photo booths, it’s an opportunity to muck about, have fun and style yourself with all the various props. Although with only 3 seconds between each picture, you can see Anni and I missed our shot a couple of times!!

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The next bit of entertainment was in the form of comedian Shappi Khorsandi (Anni and I got a chance to chat to her by the Cloak Room before we left. Unfortunately she’s off to Australia for a month but I’ll definitely be looking at when she’s next doing a gig in London, I thought she was hilarious!) 

NOTHS are in the market of creating special, bespoke, personalised gifts. Gifts that say “I thought this through…” For mother’s day they have a wide variety of mum and grandma appropriate gifts. My two favourite are:

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They had pedestals around the room depicting all the roles moms play in our lives. My favourite was “Thanks for being my life long phone a friend” 🙂

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At the end of the evening I was very chuffed when I was asked to give a little interview on motherhood and the event of the evening. Those who know me can’t shut me up when I start talking about S or my love of being a mom!!

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With the thrill of being on camera and aching feet from wearing high heels after such a long time, we headed home. But not before receiving a fabulous little goddie bag from NOTHS.

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Thanks notonthehighstreet.com and Mumsnet for a fabulous evening. I’m off to order my mom something in time for Mother’s Day next weekend.

“I am a member of the Mumsnet Bloggers Network Panel, a group of parent bloggers who have volunteered to review products, services, events and brands for Mumsnet. I have not paid for the product or to attend an event. I have editorial control and retain full editorial integrity.” 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So much to be grateful for

A friend sent me the below message today and I couldn’t help but share it.

I’ve had a lot on in the last few months but messages like this are a great reminder that compared to millions of other people out there, I don’t have it so bad. It’s a reminder to be grateful for all that I do have. It’s a little long but definitely worth the read.

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1. Fall and Rise

Today, when I slipped on the wet tile floor a boy in a wheelchair caught me before I slammed my head on the ground.  He said, “Believe it or not, that’s almost exactly how I injured my back 3 years ago .

2. A father’s advice

Today, my father told me, “Just go for it and give it a try!  You don’t have to be a professional to build a successful product.  Amateurs started Google and Apple.  Professionals built the Titanic

3. The power of uniqueness.

Today, I asked my mentor – a very successful business man in his 70’s – what his top 3 tips are for success.  He smiled and said, “Read something no one else is reading, think something no one else is thinking, and do something no one else is doing.

4. Looking Back

Today, I interviewed my grandmother for part of a research paper I’m working on for my Psychology class.  When I asked her to define success in her own words, she said, “Success is when you look back at your life and the memories make you smile.

5. Try and U shall know

I am blind by birth. When I was 8 years old, I wanted to play baseball. I asked my father- “Dad, can I play baseball?” He said “You’ll never know until you try.” When I was a teenager, I asked him, – “Dad Can I become a surgeon?”. He replied “Son, you’ll never know until you try.” Today I am a Surgeon, just because I tried!

6. GOODNESS & GRATITUDE

Today, after a 72 hour shift at the fire station, a woman ran up to me at the grocery store and gave me a hug.  When I tensed up, she realized I didn’t recognize her.  She let go with tears of joy in her eyes and the most sincere smile and said, “On 9-11-2001, you carried me out of the World Trade Center.” 

7. LOVE CONQUERS PAIN

Today, after I watched my dog get run over by a car, I sat on the side of the road holding him and crying.  And just before he died, he licked the tears off my face. 

8. A DOOR CLOSES TO OPEN ANOTHER

Today at 7AM, I woke up feeling ill, but decided I needed the money, so I went into work. At 3PM I got laid off. On my drive home I got a flat tire. When I went into the trunk for the spare, it was flat too. A man in a BMW pulled over, gave me a ride, we chatted, and then he offered me a job.  I start tomorrow. 

9. LOOKING BACK

Today, as my father, three brothers, and two sisters stood around my mother’s hospital bed, my mother uttered her last coherent words before she died. She simply said, “I feel so loved right now. We should have gotten together like this more often.” 

10. AFFECTION

Today, I kissed my dad on the forehead as he passed away in a small hospital bed.  About 5 seconds after he passed, I realized it was the first time I had given him a kiss since I was a little boy. 

11. INNOCENCE

Today, in the cutest voice, my 8-year-old daughter asked me to start recycling. I chuckled and asked, “Why?” She replied, “So you can help me save the planet.”  I chuckled again and asked, “And why do you want to save the planet?” “Because that’s where I keep all my stuff,” she said. 

12. JOY

Today, when I witnessed a 27-year-old breast cancer patient laughing hysterically at her 2-year-old daughter’s antics, I suddenly realized that I need to stop complaining about my life and start celebrating it again.

13. KINDNESS

Today, a boy in a wheelchair saw me desperately struggling on crutches with my broken leg and offered to carry my backpack and books for me.  He helped me all the way across campus to my class and as he was leaving he said, “I hope you feel better soon.”.

14. SHARING

Today, I was traveling in Kenya and I met a refugee from Zimbabwe.  He said he hadn’t eaten anything in over 3 days and looked extremely skinny and unhealthy.  Then my friend offered him the rest of the sandwich he was eating.  The first thing the man said was, “We can share it.”

Happy Tuesday 🙂

When it’s time, it’s time…

I woke up to some very sad news today. A close friends brother in law passed away in a car accident last night. It’s not that I knew him (I’d met him once a few years ago) but he left behind a wife and 4 year old son. What saddens me is the family would never have got to say goodbye. It was so sudden.

Later in the morning I read a headline about Michael Schumacher. Michael who is one of the worlds best race car drivers has been in an induced coma for over 2 months after suffering from a head injury while skiing in the French alps and chances of him making a full recovery are slim. He’s spent years driving Formula 1 cars and yet what’s hurt him is not racing but actually just going on holiday.

Days like this remind me how much I have to be grateful for and also reiterate to me how important it is to be happy. To live a life that brings me joy through my days. To let go of negativity in my life and replace it with happiness – be it people, thoughts or situations.

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I truly believe God has a plan for all of us. As morbid as it sounds, we don’t know how long we’re going to be around for. Our birth and our death are the only things we can’t plan. What we can choose is how to spend the days in between.

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