Struggling

mindfulness, Parenting

Sweet M,

Your mama is really struggling today. Despite the sunshine and the laughter and the knowing and feeling of just how precious you are and just how incredibly lucky I am, I am struggling.

I feel as though I have fallen into a well of melancholy. I wish I could erase the scene of me bursting into tears in front of you. But it has now firmly planted itself in your elephant like memory. I am just sad. So very sad. I know it will pass.

I love you so very much.

 

 

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Moving

expat parenting, German expat, mindfulness

I’ve been stuck in blogging inertia for way too long. While days and weeks have dragged and sped on, filled with lesson planning, translating, German lessons, play dates, baking, arguing, cooking, eating, guilting, laughing, interior planning, anxiety managing and too much wine & coffee drinking (plus a bit of Netflix-ing), I’ve been ignoring the little writer, cowering under the tens of thousands of thoughts that get processed in my head. ‘Write..’, it squeaks. But the thoughts of doing other things holler loudly and hold my attention longer than the little mousy writer.

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BUT! Today my procrastination skills are really working for my writing. ūüôā

Being the master procrastinator can have its advantages. We’re moving out next week and I have lots of clothing and linen to wash and iron before ensconcing ourselves in a hotel opposite Alter Oper for at least a fortnight due to building delays. So instead of getting out the Persil capsules, I open up my laptop and log into my blog account after doing the obligatory Facebook browsing, article reading and ‘liking’ of the inspo memes and endearing photos. So here I am. Sorry, it’s been so long, M. The gap from the last post was a bit on the massive side but better late than‚Ķ never (say never).

Instagram has been a sort of surrogate blog for me for the past few months – it’s much easier to ping on a pic and write down some thoughts that accompany it, but it’s not the same as sitting down and really thinking of stringing a few decent and sometimes not so decent sentences. There’s really only so much I can type in one go on the smart phone, and now that I’m displaying carpal tunnel symptoms which get worse with phone usage (I know!) , I’m trying to minimise writing essays on it.

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Bakeup artist me via Deliciousmother

Minimalism update: satisfied with the purging of unused, unwanted and unloved things. The move will go smoother for it, and now that we’re downsizing, it will be much more practical as far as storage goes. Working on getting the number of M’s toys down. Hard. When she looks at me with those eyes and frowns, it makes it bloody hard. But no one needs nine Barbies (all gifted!). I hate Mattel.

Sanity update: pretty sane. blips mostly in the early hours but managing with meditation and mindfulness. Rate TAD program and the Headspace app. Life changers!

Getting used to living in Germany update: pretty good. Language is key and now thatI can bark back at people who decide to give me lip, it’s ok ūüôā I’m using German as much as I can when out and about. Even went on a hiking trip with three German ladies and spent the majority of the time chatting in Deutsch. While this is great, it also means my English is suffering even more. This is why regular blogging would be useful for my written English.

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I love these things so much I felt the need to quadruple them. via Deliciousmother

(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.

 

 

 

 

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.

 

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.