The saddest regret

An increasing number of mothers are coming forward and stating that they wish they never had their children.

They describe motherhood as a life-altering mistake and middle-class prison.

I cannot imagine life without my boys, therefore I can only feel sorry for these women (and some men). Some of them also make me angry…

Reasons

Many do have legitimate reasons, such as complex emotional problems and lives. Many women do become pregnant by accident.

However, plenty of people also seem to regret having their children for purely selfish reasons.

  • There’s the father who has to use anti-depressants, because he can’t face the fact that his one year old has needs which have to be satisfied before his own. He wants his life to go back to the way it was before he had a kid.
  • There’s the mother who feels she would have written 3 books by now if she had not had her kids. Surely she should have considered before having kids that she would now have less time for such pursuits, at least while the kids are small? And then are those ladies who feel they would have been much further along in their careers, but the children are holding them back…
  • You also get your outright narcissistic and abusive parents. One young lady was abused by her mother who also decided she did not want kids after having them.
  • Some people are actually good parents, but seemingly unable to enjoy parenthood as they have unreasonable expectations of themselves.

Societal pressure

Apparently a life without kids is still regarded as inferior for women. Many of the women in the various newspaper articles and online chat groups, mentioned they were pressured by society to procreate. I’ve never experienced this bias (or maybe I’m just thick-skinned and unknowingly ignored it), even though I only got married and had my first child at the age of 34. Somehow it seems easy to blame societal/peer pressure for doing something you don’t want to do, when the regret hits you afterwards. But surely as a mature adult you can also make your own choices?

Don’t inflict yourself on innocent children if you don’t really want them. Having children may seem like the fashionable idea at the time and in tune with your crowd, but they can’t be returned to the shop if you grow tired of them.

I fully support people who don’t want children and consider this a normal and adult decision. But it’s unnecessary to act in a dysfunctional manner by having a child and then regretting it afterwards because you now have to make sacrifices in your career and personal life.

The boy who almost wasn’t

It’s been about a year since I last updated my blog. Boy, what a year it’s been. It’s been a year of boys.

The boy who almost wasn’t has now firmly settled in and is a fully fledged member of our family.

For those who aren’t aware, I chose to abort my previous pregnancy, after the fetus was diagnosed with Down Syndrome and a heart that was not developing properly. A terrible (but we felt) necessary decision.

But now we have baby James, born almost 11 months after the abortion.  And Ewan is finally starting to love his brother after competing with him for attention for the first few months. At times he even shares his toys with him.

It’s been a year of love and learning.  Busy and stressful at times, but I’ve quickly learnt how to be a better parent.

And I’ve decided its time to become more myself and go on a personal journey of #bodypositivity.

Watch this space for related insights. 😛

 

Life of the pregnant working mother

The life of the pregnant working mother can be a challenge.

At the halfway mark

At the halfway mark of pregnancy myself, I have empathy for other working mothers in the same boat, especially those who already have small children.

Tiredness and disrupted sleep

And my sympathy to those who also suffer from severe sickness.  At least my main pregnancy symptom this time seems to be tiredness, which is probably being exacerbated by having a busy two year old to take care of and having to get up frequently at night to urinate.

My Interstitial Cystitis is not exactly helping the situation. And my craving for fruit juice and spicy food is probably not helping my Interstitial Cystitis.

Then there is also the pregnancy insomnia, which I also experienced when I was pregnant with Ewan.

My brain starts working overtime and simply won’t shut off.  Where I used to fall asleep quickly before, I can now lie awake for hours, staring at the ceiling.

Recent bouts of illness

Then there are the recent bouts of illness courtesy of the small germinator who shares his love with me.  😛

Three bouts of the stomach flu in short succession is starting to feel like a bit much.

Unfortunately these are the results of a weakened immune system during pregnancy.

Boosting your immune system

Rest would be beneficial, but there’s not that much to be had if you have to work full time.  The best option then is to try and boost your immune system.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A letter to my son

Dear Ewan,

There’s a lot of things I want for you, but the main one is this – never get “stuck”.

Be free and happy

I know this is one of your favourite words at the moment, but please never get stuck in life.

Especially don’t get stuck in a job. It’s simply not worth it. And before you know it, half your life will be over and you haven’t used most of your talents or spent nearly as much time with your family as you wanted.

Be strong and creative

By this I’m not saying that you must never get a job or live off other people’s hard work.

I’m simply saying:

  • Make sure that you never have to sit bored out of your mind in an office somewhere, simply for the sake of having a job to pay the bills.
  • It’s true that you need work experience, especially when you first finish studying. But keep on studying and learning whatever you can from who you can, especially successful business people.
  • Develop an entrepreneurial spirit and think long term.
  • I want you to feel empowered and motivated. You should believe enough in yourself to take your destiny into your own hands.
  • I want you to think anything is possible and that you will be able to accomplish it.
  • Know that you may sometimes fail, but that your parents’ door will always be open.
  • Never be afraid. It is fear of the unknown that often kills entrepreneurial spirit.
  • Remember that each day brings new possibilities. I don’t want you to ever be in a position where you sit in a boring job, just waiting for the days to pass. This will be like a slow death for your strong and independent spirit.

Become “unstuck”

If you ever do get stuck, please make sure that you don’t stay like this for too long. Work to get yourself out of this situation, while you still have some motivation and zest for life. Don’t become a mindless drone.

I’m sure you will do very well and get everything you want in life. Already, at the age of two, you have the demeanour of a hard-headed and determined entrepreneur.

You’re a cheeky one and you will be a leader some day. I’m looking forward to see you grab life by the horns.

My lovable little man

And so, I’ve been away from my blog for a while.

Emotionally and physically, it has been a tough and somewhat draining year. I haven’t really felt inspired to write over the last few weeks.

Interesting “new” behaviour

But recently, the little man has started displaying “new” behaviour, which I feel has to be documented.  😛

Signs of empathy

Upon being abused by the little bugger, I simulated some very fake and rather horrible crying. Where before he would have found this hilarious, now he didn’t know what to do and seemed rather uncomfortable.

He gave me a worried look, and asked me “what’s wong?” Then he looked away shyly and gave me a quick hug.

The next time I did this, he asked me “why mamma sad?” and I got another shy hug.

Game

However, this quickly became a game when he discovered what mamma was doing.  😛

The game goes something like this – you get whacked by a small hand and if you fake crying, you get some hugs.

Kissing

I’ve also taught the little bug to give kisses. He comes to you tight-lipped and then gives you a smack on the mouth.

He’s not adverse to kissing, but you can forget about getting more than your daily allocation. 😛

A proper little person

So while he was still a baby a few short months ago, he is now becoming a proper little person who cares about others’ feelings and sometimes not.

I’m looking forward to see how he will develop in future months. 🙂

 

The joys of toddler development

When I look back, the little man has developed so much over the past two years. From a cuddly little doll wrapped up in a blanket, he has developed into a walking, talking (almost) fully functional human being. 😛

Development over the last few months:

  • It took him a while to achieve mobility. He wasn’t keen on tummy time and only started crawling properly at around 10 months. At around 9 months, he started dragging himself around sideways, almost like a crab. At 16 months, he finally gave his first, shaky steps. It was touch and go for a while and a few crash landings took place. I think he finally mastered the art of walking at around 19 months. Now he runs like a loonatic, especially away from you, when you want to brush his teeth or dress him. Or he sprints outside, especially when he hears a helicopter, usually shouting “Copter!” at the top of his voice.
  • He also drives his little plastic bike like a maniac. A natural born biker like his dad, he has superb control and is very agile. He tries to do wheelies, which at the moment ends with him falling off on his bum. This development is a bit worrying for future, teenaged years. 😛
  • From baby babbling he has now advanced to words and even full sentences. You have to be careful what you say around the little guy, because he repeats everything. EVERYTHING.
  • He finally drinks water and juice, ever since he started crèche. Before then he refused and mostly subsisted on milk. It was a battle to get water into him.
  • Tantrums. My sweet little baby has been taken over by the terrible two’s monster. Mother usually just ignores the outbursts.
  • These days the little man also dabbles in the creative arts, like drawing, painting and playing with dough. Drawing and painting should preferably occur under supervision. Otherwise you will find the bath and toilet decorated with scribbles. His scribbles inside my new bookcase, are apparently “ducks”.  😛 Safest is just to give him chalk and let him draw on his blackboard, but unfortunately he has a tendency to eat it.

Now if he can only get over the creche syndrome, so that we can enjoy more of the fun stuff. :p

A letter to Ewan on his 2nd birthday

Dear Ewan,

Your 2nd birthday was this weekend.

Two years of hugs and laughter, but also tantrums. Lots of fun, but also hard work.

Many hours of lost sleep, especially when you are ill and you only want to sleep in mother’s arm or curl up tightly against her back. Precious moments, even when I’m dead tired the next day.

I wish I had more time for close contact with you. I was fortunate that you were wholly mine for six months before I had to return to work. Now you are my evening, weekend and holiday child.

How you have changed:

  1. You have become a little person over the last two years. You walk and talk and have a strong will of your own. 😛 You want to do things your way and at your pace. You quickly tell us to “go away!” or “stoppit!” if we don’t do what you want.
  2. You’ve developed an impressive vocabulary. It’s actually become easy to have a conversation of sorts with you. We don’t have to interpret grunts and cries anymore.
  3. You’ve also started to realise possession and that you can tell other people, “It’s mine!” But you are very good at sharing, especially for a child who doesn’t have any siblings yet. You like to share your food with mommy and daddy.
  4. The quiet, meek little baby has become a strong and noisy little boy. It’s become more and more difficult to pick you up and control you, especially when you are throwing a tantrum. 😛
  5. Two years ago the house still belonged to the adults. When you became mobile, we started the process of baby proofing. These days we have to try and put things high out of your reach, as you have become such a tall boy.
  6. Your size and level of development often means that people think you are three years or older.
  7. You are not always that accepting of infinite hugs and kisses anymore. Mother gets pushed away when it becomes too much.

I look forward to sharing your 3rd birthday with you.

Love

Mamma