(Mummy) guilt

mindfulness, Parenting
guilt

Source

If I got given a Diptyque candle (190g) for every time I felt guilty about being depressed/anxious/stressed and for letting it (negatively) affect my parenting and partnering skills, I wouldn’t necessarily be happier, but my place would just smell divine. On top of all the guilt I feel for feeling the way I do, given the fact that I am well fed, housed, warm and have an incredible little family, I feel the post-rant/hissy fit/frustrated sigh/eye-roll/snapping/yelling/mean comment/etc/etc/etc/ guilt. The two loves of my life have had to deal with some not so nice moments in the past couple of years. What doesn’t make me want to throw myself into the river (and slowly swim myself back to safety) is that they were lucky enough to have thousands and thousands of yummy moments with me. I’m not sure I would have been able to say or write that last sentence a couple of months ago. I was so full up self pity and woe is me creek I wouldn’t have been able to recognise what a great mummy and wife I can be. I am. I AM.

Back to the guilt. I don’t need to tell you how useless it is and to focus on other things and blah blah blah. Most people know that it really is not  very productive and feeling bucket loads of it does not make up for being a dick nor erase the pain that can ensue when you do not want to spend every spare minute you have with the kid(s). Despite my disdain for the G monster, it’s getting better. How I’m reacting to it is improving. It’s definitely still there, just not as heart breaking. And guess what I think is causing it?!

MINDFULNESS. My daily meditation practice. Me, dedicating myself to it. Despite more stress from external sources. Despite not knowing if I am getting better at it or not. Even Mr B has noticed that I haven’t gone all “that time of the month” on him for a good while.

I’m trying to not have any expectations of this new practice. That’s a hard thing for me. Really hard. But I’m persevering because I’m not sure there is another way for me to manage these episodes any better. I’m sighing and procrastinating less. Eating better (still eating lots of chocolate). Cooking and baking more. Sleeping better. Crying less and laughing more. Chucking out unnecessary things again. Playing with M more without feeling like it’s the most boring activity in the world. I’ve come to fall in love again with my loves. And that is something I am so grateful for.

 

 

 

 

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Where does the time

Miscellaneous

go?

It’s been over four months since I posted anything.

Many reasons. I got depressed. I got anxious. Blogging about how awful I felt just did not appeal to me in the slightest. And I kept hoping, or rather, kept promising myself to write another post when I got “better”; when I’d feel an inkling of joy, hope and a sense of looking forward to something. But the days and weeks and months rolled by without a significant change in mood. Life was just suckety fuck. Fuckety suck. My life was in constant black and white with Donnie Darko on repeat.

But things changed. I discovered or rediscovered mindfulness meditation. This time, I signed up to a program called meditationSHIFT. I’m almost through with the 21 day program, but the practice isn’t to end EVER.

And slowly, I feel like the colour is returning. S L O W L Y.

 

Chinese New Year Resolutions I think I can keep.

Parenting & Musings

Happy New Year! I hope you all had a lovely holiday season and haven’t been to harsh on yourselves for breaking your new year resolutions (sorry, a bit cynical, I know).

For the first time in a long time, I didn’t make any resolutions on December 31, 2013. No lists of things to do or who/what to become. I’m taking the pressure right off to be perfect. You know, the perfect size/weight (although I would like to get back to my pre-holiday season shape, but not a size 0), the perfect mother (shoulda seen my yesterday with M), the perfect wife (I think I lost that resolution almost five years ago, and what does the perfect wife even mean? Sex on tap and acquiescence till death?), the perfect daughter (I think stopped being one when I was no longer virginal, but probably it was when I didn’t make it into James Ruse High) or perfect sister (Amazingsister, I’m so sorry for the times I made you cry).

photo

A bit more of this and some long soaks in the bath, please! via deliciousmother

Let’s face it, all those efforts didn’t see me being anywhere near ‘perfect’, and only ended up with severe angst, tears and lovely ol’ anxiety about it. And let’s not forget the shame fuelled sugar binges.

Oh no. I’ve come to realise finally that, trying my best is enough. I am enough. I am bloody, frickin’ enough. It’s all well and easy to write and say that, but sometimes it’s really hard to believe that when challenged with a toddler who refuses to nap, and pees/poos where it’s not appropriate. On a day like yesterday a hundred “I love myself” and “It will pass” mantras would not do the trick!

So now that I’ve had a bit of time in January to think and observe myself (in thought and in action), I’m going to make a few Chinese New Year Resolutions that aim not for perfection, but for more joy.

1. Make a daily mantra: I am enough!

2. Be more mindful of waste: take carrier bags when shopping, buy bulk, use up my cosmetics/make up before adding to the mini apothecary I already have. etc.

3. Take care of me first. Do things that relax me, bring me joy, slow me down and make me feel better. Whether it’s yoga, a run, journalling, writing my novella, saying no (a challenge for a people pleaser like me), letting Amazing M watch a bit of telly while I take a half hour nap, or going out with my gorgeous girl friends (without child).

See, not a perfecting resolution in sight!

Also a loving shout out to Miss AJK. Miss you loads and your text came at a very handy time. Love you long time!

All I want for Christmas.

Parenting & Musings

If you took a brief look at the facts of my life, there is nothing I need more of, physically speaking. I have a gorgeous and very forgiving husband, an equally wonderful daughter who never gets sick of calling my name or favouring me to anyone else in the world (I did well with that kid, I must say), a beautiful flat that has spectacular views of the Thames, the ability to purchase most things* I want without a thought, as well as a loving family and friends to boot. Some could say I have it all, minus the career (I’m busy hiding behind the role of motherhood for now, but this job require a lot of energy). So why the recent discontent, deliciousmother?

Christmas time in London via deliciousmother

Christmas time in London via deliciousmother

 

Perhaps discontent is too strong a word. It’s hard to articulate how I am feeling, but it’s as if I’m on the brink of real contentment but somehow my mind or thoughts are pulling me back. I’m wrestling with the habit of worring about the future, or drowning in regrets and memories that bring back feelings of shame. It’s as if I’m a thinking-too-much-really-useless-shit junkie.

The recent anxiety and panic attacks have motivated me to get to the root cause, hence the therapy and sharing my experiences and thought processes with my fellow deliciousmothers in London and well, I guess now on the world wide web. Part of my therapy is to practice more self compassion, as I am my worst critic- spawning from the trait of perfectionism. And so far so ok. The self compassion muscle has atrophied and I’m rehabilitating it. But it’s not so easy at times. And the old me would have thought I am not doing enough, but the ‘new’ me is relaxed about it. I am not even chastising the voice that says, ‘Get over the past, already!’ or ‘Why are you worrying about that now?’. I mean, they are good CBT exercises, but the last thing I need right now is a critique of my critique. Instead I just sing out aloud or in my head the line from Funky Town,’Gotta move on!’ When I do sing out aloud, Amazing M looks at me disapprovingly and says, ‘No, mama. Jimoree!’ Which means: ‘No, mama. You only sing this at Gymboree!’.

So, back to the title of this post. What this deliciousmother would really love this Christmas is not more presents, but more presence. To be free from unnessary thoughts and worries, or at the very least, a better ability to move myself back to the present without losing myself in the painful stories I needlessly create. And this is something no one can buy, and only I can acquire myself.

* not everything but you get my drift

I wish you all a wonderful Christmas.