One Change in a Lifetime

… is all it takes

My Son At 15 Months May 13, 2014

Filed under: Parenthood — onechangeinalifetime @ 12:28 pm
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My last post was at 8 months I think, so I think it’s safe to say… a lot has changed!

You are now walking up to 10 steps at a time… and you don’t need me to walk to anymore, your first steps into the big wide world!
You still really enjoy crawling and being in the BabyBjorn…
You throw tantrums… oh so loud! And distraction does not work anymore…You go to playgroups and explore the world of other toddlers…
You yell out nana gaga when we drive up your nan and granddad’s house
You pop out your dummy when oma says Ploop
You enjoy riding your trike
You know who your cousins are because you look at their picture when mommy ask you…
You don’t just slam toys on the floor or give them a smack anymore, you can now put things in other things and be much gentler
You enjoy pulling mommy’s hair in in the morning when she dozes off next to you
You yell out Baaaa when you wake up in the morning…You have been to Spain once and Holland 5 times…
You really enjoyed Centre Parcs in April…especially the subtropical swim paradise and the walks through the forests…
You did not like the nursery much, you kept crying so we don’t take you there anymore…

And much much more… Mommy is so proud of you!

 

 

 

 

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Self-confidence

Filed under: Awareness,Change,Mental health — onechangeinalifetime @ 12:11 pm
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Last week I had a job interview at an organization I really want to be part of. It’s not like it’s the dream position, it’s only for 7 months, it’s a hell of a long commute into London, but I really wanted the job, it would have been my first one since becoming a mum and I just need to be more than just a mom now, so even the ridiculous mind-numbing get-me-ready-for-the-nuthouse commute didn’t keep me from applying.

There I was, fully prepared to build rapport, have a nice chat before the interview to break the ice a little, fully prepared to be able to show my portfolio and wow them with my achievements, fully prepared to see them sitting there with my CV in front of them and going through that. None of that happened. Three young-ish girls were sitting on the other side of the table and they did not have my CV in front of them. They did not do chitchat. They had a glass of water ready for me (making me even more nervous of what was in front of me). All they did was fire off about ten questions from a sheet of paper. And that’s when I got nervous, and when I get nervous I can’t concentrate. And concentration is what you need when you do an interview in a non-native language. So I ended up repeating words many, MANY times, and also rambling on exactly the way I wasn’t planning to do. It was a mess. I did have some moments where I shone, I’m sure, but the nervousness just took over completely. Was it the cold and impersonal approach these girls were taking that took me off guard? Or was it just my own self-confidence taking a plummet down a rabbit hole and leaving me to feel like a fraud?

See, in my last two jobs as communications officer I was practically headhunted and did not need to convince anyone of my abilities, and that’s where today I stand as a very insecure person when faced with these situations. When I speak to a professor at one of the research institutes I used to work at, who is now a client of ours, I don’t have these issues, because I don’t have to convince this guy of my abilities, because he knows them and trusts me.

So my goal is to get to the bottom of my self-confidence issues. Why do these interviews make me feel so lousy and like I haven’t achieved anything? Like they are going to figure out I’m a fraud and can’t do the job when deep down inside I know that if I was thrown in the deep end I would be fine? Has motherhood hit my self-confidence harder than I thought it had? How can I exude more confidence? How can I hold my own as a non-native in a world of native speakers, especially under pressure?

Interesting questions to ask yourself, and not so easy to answer however!:P

 

 

The end November 24, 2013

Filed under: Uncategorized — onechangeinalifetime @ 7:39 am
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While our son’s life is just beginning our friend’s life is ending. I find this hard to grasp. She’s in her thirties, her life in front of her, just got married last year, hopes of becoming a mother despite having had grueling cancer treatment… and there it was… back with a vengeance…relapse from hell, the cancer had struck again and this time so quickly, so ferociously that no treatment was really going to be its worthy nemesis. So now it’s the dreaded treatment of delaying the disease, but it’s everywhere except in her arms and brain.

It’s so hard to imagine her life right now, let alone what goes on in her mind when she lies awake at night. And it’s not something you ask is it? She mentioned in an email it was all very surreal and eerily real at the same time.

Every day so many people are approaching the end of their lives but – thankfully – most of them have had long and hopefully fulfilling lives. It’s the young ones that are dying that are on my mind a lot these days. The ones who had to give up their dreams of traveling, of starting a family, finding the love of their lives, starting their own business, anything really…. I think of their abandoned dreams and count my blessings for at the age of 37 I have already led a life in which I have done the things I wanted: travel, live abroad, enjoy, meet my love, have my son, start a business… And the days that I am tired and in pain and a bit fed up I try to think of our friend and the many young people in her situation…Really think about her and realize I’ve truly been blessed.

 

Is this something universal? November 2, 2013

Man & Woman meet. Man & Woman date. Man & Woman get married. Or not.
Man & Woman or Husband & Wife have a baby.
They adore baby together for a week or two. Man goes back to work.

The misunderstandings start.

Man does not understand why when he comes home from work, the laundry is still piled up to the ceiling.
Man does not understand that when he comes home from work, woman is tired out of her eyeballs.Man does not understand why when he comes home from work, he is expected to help woman out.
Man does not understand why when he comes home from work, the food isn’t on the table like it used to be.
Man does not understand why when he comes home from work, he finds that woman did not sleep when baby slept.
Man does not understand why when he comes home from work, he should be lucky to find woman and baby alive.

Why is it so hard to understand for men how bleeding hard it is to look after a baby all day long? I don’t need to sum up all the things that you need to do every day and how tedious things can get, because every mum knows the list by heart. Why then is it so hard to make your partner understand your world?

The biggest thing that contributes to the feelings of misery and that tips most new mums over the edge of sanity into insanity is advice (read: criticism). This is mostly true for well-meaning but absent dads. The ones who work hard to keep their family supported, but don’t even put one thought into raising a child and what it involves. They have no idea how to clean a bottle (or even where to buy one), how to wean your baby, how to clean a poo nappy, whereas mum has read every book and done every course in existence about every aspect of baby rearing. This Dad comes home, doesn’t acknowledge the mum’s under-eye bags or the crazy look in her eyes, and goes straight into advice (*cough* criticism *cough*) about the baby’s milk-stained outfit or the fact that the baby is crying (“is he hungry? you should put him to bed! Doesn’t he need a nappy change?”) to name but a few of the possibilities. Dad might or might not be alive at the end of this.

My theory is that although these Dads provide for their families, they feel incompetent because they don’t know anything about how to keep a baby alive. They counter these feelings of incompetence by making the mums feel incompetent. Sounds harsh, yes, but I think a lot of mums will agree. This does by no means mean that these men don’t love their partner, but they have to find a way to channel negative feelings, which is often through the person you love and need most.

And are they not in their right when they give advice? Yes, in the case of giving genuine advice, and not veiled criticism, they would be entirely in their right to give this, it is after all their baby as well.

For mums it is important to make their partner understand how their criticism makes them feel. And how their partner can turn their criticism in well-meant advice and get a much happier mummy in return to come home to. And maybe they will make it to baby’s first birthday alive. 😉

 

What’s worse? October 16, 2013

Filed under: Parenthood — onechangeinalifetime @ 10:28 am
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My little baby boy is poorly for the first time in his 8.5 months. He is coughing a lot and seems to experience some tooth pain… It’s awful to see him cry in pain and exhausting to hear him whinge.  But what makes everything worse? It’s being poorly myself at the same time. I never knew how exhausting that combo could be! I just want him to be comfortable, but hanging over his cot to soothe him is out of the question because that would mean dribbling him with mucus coming from my nose. I would love to just walk around the house with him on my arm but my muscles just hurt too much.

So I think the remedy for today is to sleep as much as possible and then let the bathroom fill with steam and have a warm bath together!

image

The picture depicts where I would like to be hiking now with my baby instead of sitting at home!;)

 

My little man at eight months… September 22, 2013

Filed under: Uncategorized — onechangeinalifetime @ 4:14 pm
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He loves standing up…by himself!
He loves tigering to get to his favorite toy.
He does not stop talking.
He jumps even when he’s not in his Jumperoo.
He loves talking to opa and oma on Skype.
He giggles when he’s tickled under his arm or anywhere really on the body.
He enjoys bath time so much, but still keeps four fingers in his mouth most of the time for comfort.
He has favorite toys now.
He is a pro traveler now, having traveled on a plane six times in his short life!
He is starting to enjoy fruit and spaghetti bolognese and lots more.
He has friends now.
He goes to signing classes.
He has successfully completed a baby massage course.
He is not too fond of sitting up, he can do it, but what’s the point if you can move to get to your favorite toy?
He puts his hand to his mouth when he gets really excited (such as nanna singing baba black sheep).
He still can’t fall asleep without being in his swaddle.
He wakes every few hours (probably to see if we’re still there).
He still sleeps in our room.
He loves his highchair (thank God, it cost £180).
He loves carrot sticks (the crunchy ones).
He still loves his bottle over everything else.

 

So proud of him…

 

 

Day care… I don’t think so. September 21, 2013

Filed under: Awareness,Parenthood,Uncategorized — onechangeinalifetime @ 3:08 pm
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I can’t do it people. I can’t put my son in day care!

I have been so lucky, most of my Dutch friends would have been back at work for five months by now! My son is now eight months old and the only people who have looked after him are me, his Dad, the in-laws and my parents. Oh and my sister in law. Once.

At this point I do not trust anyone to look after my son who does not love him as much as I love him. There, I said it.

My savings are rapidly declining but to be honest, it’s the best way to spend my savings that I have earned through 18 years of honest labor. And I realize that our son is going to be an only child, so I want to experience this little life to the fullest. I do not want to miss his first pull-up, his first crawl, his first WHATEVER.

But I know the time will come when I have to consider daycare. We run our own business and it’s going to be harder and harder when our son starts roaming the rooms in the house and the sleepy-times are going to become shorter and shorter and less frequent. The funny thing is, I always saw daycare as a great option for working moms. My mother is even a manager of three daycare centers and every time I would visit her I would be amazed at how nice these places are. But now that I have my own child, I freak out at the thought of leaving my beautiful, unharmed baby there to be – perhaps – harmed by other babies! Or carers.. there’s just been too many awful stories in the news lately…

When do you think the point will come when it becomes easier to make this decision? How did you experience this?