Category Archives: Experience

Learning to let go: Prioritising Yourself

Letting go is hard to do…..but it’s the right thing to do

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Learning to let go and focus on yourself

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Let Go of Work

I left work last week to start my maternity leave. I found it really difficult actually, even though I was pretty relieved to be leaving as I felt pretty tired and fat and ready to be at home and get ready for the new arrival. Why did I find it hard? I found it hard because I had to let go of the things I had control of at work. I had to hand things over to other people. I couldn’t finish some pieces of work, and it was hard to leave something half-finished for someone who is a complete perfectionist. I also couldn’t do some things at work due to risk, and I had to let other people do these things for me. It felt a little disempowering, to be honest.

I found myself getting more worked up about these little things, as I felt such possession over my work and my role, I was struggling to let go, even though bizarrely it was my choice to have another baby which led me to the situation in the first place! I’ve never been good with transitions, and this is just another case of me  having to learn to move on and let go.

Let Go of Maternity Leave

It reminded me of going back to work after maternity leave. I had to let go in reverse that time. I had created a lovely maternity leave bubble, and having spent almost every day for a year with Nancy I found it really hard to hand her over to other people to look after as I went to work. I knew her little ways, what she liked to eat, how she liked to sleep. I couldn’t imagine how she would cope with other people doing these things with her, and I really did struggle initially when others were out having fun with her, whilst I was sat at work.

Over time, it became easier. Life become routine, normal and everyone settled into their lives and roles. Time and space is a good healer. Just as now, sitting here in my living room watching Netflix, any feelings of stress about my job have all dissipated. I can’t even remember what I was getting so het up about. I’ve let go, I’ve relaxed, I’ve cleared my mind of the stress that was balled up in there the past few weeks and I’m focusing on the next task – getting this bubba out. Gulp.

Let Go of Stress

This has got me thinking in general about trying to  let go and eradicate stress in my life. The past 12 months have been highly stressful and for a while my mental health suffered. Since this time I’ve tried hard to not let things escalate.

Stress in general can block you from achieving what you want, as can other people. I find I’m always the person people come to with a problem or an issue;  I do like to help others but there comes a time for all of us when the stresses and worries of others can be reflected back onto us, and we suddenly feel responsible for other people and their actions, or desperately trying to think of solutions for other people. It becomes even more frustrating when those you are trying to help, and asked for help, don’t even take the advice or listen to your solutions, meaning you have worried and stressed about something for nothing!

You shouldn’t feel guilty for prioritising yourself in your life.

Focus on YOU

So, how do you let go? How do you drop these things from your mind when initially they can seem all-consuming? I think you have to focus on one thing: yourself.

What makes you happy.

What can you actually do.

Your life. Your dreams. Your wishes.

Doing things for myself and getting interested in crafts and creative tasks have really helped me to calm and relax. It is amazing how your mind can empty when you pick up a crochet hook or start reading a book. It’s important to remember to make time for yourself amidst the work, family, friends, babies.

Let Go of trying to fix others

I’ve also learnt that I can’t fix everything, or everyone. I can help as much as I can, but there comes a time when you just have to stop and regroup, and not let it totally consume you.

I could sit here and worry and stress about a hundred different things – and yes, sometimes things do take over my mind and I find it hard to shake off. But I try my best not to worry about things I have no control over, or that don’t even directly affect me. I can’t solve everyone’s problems and I’ve realised that in order to make myself happy, I have to focus on my life, and what I want from it. You shouldn’t feel guilty for prioritising yourself in your life.

Letting go of all of these things is empowering.

If people want you in their life, they will make the effort, as will you. If you’ve managed to work out how to juggle your life, solve your problems, others can do too. If people choose not to accept your advice, that is up to them. You are not irreplaceable at work, someone else can do just as good a job as you, and they will – and that’s OK. Choosing to focus on your family and nothing else for a while is not selfish.

Letting go of all these things is hard, but it is the right thing to do. Getting caught up in all of these things is not healthy and will only make you feel bad – usually for no reason at all.

Let. It. Go.

(How tempted were you to start singing Frozen songs then, eh?)

The Dance Class: A Parent’s Reality

The realities of taking a 3 year old to Dance Classes…..

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Realities of Dance Classes for Parents

Last year I thought it was a great idea to sign Nancy up to dance lessons. It was one of those thoughts, where you think ‘it’s probably time I left the house and started to initiate her into a social world,’ and in paticular I was looking for something for her to do so that she gets worn out and I didn’t neccessarily need to do much to achieve it. It suddenly dawned on me that athletes, musicians or dancers started this stuff when they were really small. So in order to ensure she has the best chance of turning into the next superstar, I duly signed her up.

She actually attends a lovely dance class where she does Tap and Ballet every Saturday. I didn’t think when I signed her up, though, how much of a commitment it is for me, and how you get sucked into the world of dance classes. This is the reality of The Ballet Class:

1.The Early Start

I have to get up every Saturday morning and get her to Ballet for 9.15am in the morning. On a SATURDAY. What the hell was I thinking?

2. Uniform

Every week she has to wear the dance uniform. Which comprises of a leotard, tights and a caridigan, as well as the right shoes. Not only did it cost me a fortune, I have to remember to wash* it and make her look presentable as well as getting her to the start for 9.15am. On a SATURDAY….

I also am still ramming her into the leotard as I refuse to buy one until at least September. Same goes for the shoes, I ordered them a size larger and it was only when she wore them the first time I realised they could slightly affect her dance skills, but she’s better now she’s grown into them a bit.

*I admit there may be weeks where the uniform may not get washed and she may look slightly dishevlled and smell slightly like a PE kit.

3.  Waiting

When I signed her up for classes, I couldn’t wait to watch her in her cute little pink uniform and watch her gracefully piroet around. Well, I wouldn’t know what she actually does, as I have to wait outside the class in a cold church hall. I can’t go anywhere in case I need to help her get to the loo.  It is 45mins of pure me time though, I guess, as long as I take a jumper and a flask.

4. Other Parents

The waiting room looks like a parent wasteland. I’ve seen some parents in their Pyjamas, although I haven’t done that yet. Some look hungover, some look tired. Some look absolutely pristine and as if they’d just got off the jet from St. Tropez. Not many people talk to each other, and seats in the corners by the dividing door to the class are a premium, as you can spy on your child through a crack. My idea of meeting more Mum friends hasn’t really become a reality as yet….

5. Noise

No-one thought to tell me that  group of 3-5 year olds in a tap class are LOUD. There is half an hour of out of rythmn, tap tap tapping as well as children roaring like lions or singing the Frozen theme tune whilst they stomp about the hall like elephants. Also, the teacher is loud. She has to be, to keep it in order. I sometimes wonder if she needs a drink after the class.

6. Progress

I keep taking her, because she seems to enjoy it. But can she actually dance? I have no idea. mainly because we are always too late so I can’t look through the crack to see if she is actually moving. I ask her to show me what she does at home but all I get is a roaring lion and a shuffle on the kitchen floor. So we keep on, keeping on. Maybe I have the next Darcy Bussell right here….

7. Once you join, you can never leave

Once you’re a fully signed up member of the dance class, attempts to leave are futile. You need to give one term’s notice to leave, and not that we are planning to, but I would never be as organised as to work out when that would be! I can barely remember NOT to turn up when it’s half term….

8. You do as you are told

If the teacher tells you to buy something, you buy it. You label all the clothing as you don’t want to get told off by the teacher. You get your fees paid on time and you sit there every week and smile even though you may be dying inside.

9. The Car Park

The car park is a war zone. The later you are, the more likely you are to abandon your car in the middle of the car park, blocking off 5 cars in the process. Some people wedge themselves sideways just so that they can park in the car park. I don’t know if you’ve ever seen a school at pick up time, but parents plus cars equals carnage. I am surprised no-one has been run over as yet. Once the first class ends, the real issues begin as people attempt to leave, and the next class attempt to park.

 

Depression

There are many posts that I have written over the past few months, that I never published. Since October, life got pretty shit. I was diagnosed with depression, my Dad died and well, it was awful. This post was written in October 2015. These were my thoughts when I was diagnosed with depression. 

Depression

I can laugh. I can smile. 
I’m not a zombie.

I’m not suicidal. 

I am, apparently, depressed. 

Anxious. 

I had to take time out.

Time out from what?

Everything.

There’s just not enough time for anything 

Not enough time for me.

Time is probably the reason. 

Time is running out and I have no way of stopping it. 

It’s a summer and autumn of lasts, not firsts.

So many endings. 

Saying goodbye all the time is very hard. 

I can forget, for a while.

I have made the most of the time we have left.

But I am so tired, and strained.

Restless.

I am not how I thought someone depressed is. Should be. 

If I don’t think, I am OK.

Depression is hard.

Many days, I am OK. if I don’t have to do anything, I’m OK.

but pressure,expectation, appointments, or a comment, or a look

Can have my stomach churn and the panic sets in and I am back to square one.

I probably don’t look that unwell on the outside.

But it’s all on the inside.

I’m not hyperventilating, but I am panicking. 

I can’t think of anything else. Round and round and round my head.

Small, insignificant things like a comment on a birthday card. 

I am tired. I am wired. I can’t rest. I can’t stop.

I don’t want to stop living because my dad is dying

When I was at work the other day, I was talking about starting to go to the gym. Someone remarked that perhaps I shouldn’t be doing that right now, because, well, you know.
What they meant by you know, was that my dad is dying. And who wants to go the gym when your dad is dying? 

Well, I do, actually. 

Everyday I wake up, and everyday is another day when I know my Dad is not well. He has cancer, stage 4, the worst it can be. Nothing can be done to cure him. It is awful, and the thought of him not being here makes me feel very sad indeed. 

I’ve cried, we’ve all cried. I cried the day they told me, I’ve cried on the way to work. I think of a memory of me and my dad and tears well up in my eyes. I watch Nancy with him, laughing and smiling and cuddling her Grampy, and I feel so sad that he will not see her grow up.

But you know what? I am tired of crying. I am tired of grieving for someone who is still here. I want to live my life, the way my Dad is so proud of me doing. I want to do the things I want to do, enjoy my time, make nice memories for all of us. For him. 

I keep thinking how awful it must be for my Dad. He has to face up to his mortality, a fear we all hold, surrounded by people who are crying for him as if he is already gone. He is being strong, as usual, holding everyone together when inside he must be falling apart. 

I want to make this a happy time. I want to make this time full of smiles, and laughter, and happiness. Not just for my Dad. For me. Should I be feeling worse than I am? Is it wrong to want to go to the gym? To go on holiday? No, I don’t think so.

Maybe this is a selfish thing to say, to write. But I can’t help feeling that it is wrong to be so maudlin and so miserable when this is the only time we have left with my Dad. 

Life should go on, life is what we are here to do. And most of all, I realise that life is precious. Life is so precious and we all take it for granted. I could be hit by a bus tomorrow. I keep thinking of the tragedy in Tunisia, which happened days after my Dads diagnosis. Here we are, crying over my dad and yet there are 30 people whose lives were taken suddenly and cruelly, no warning at all. No one knows when they will die, just my Dad has been given the heads up. He can say goodbyes, tick things off a list, enjoy the time he has left.

Which is what we should all do really, isn’t it? Enjoy the time we have. I am a great believer in mindfulness, and living in the moment. Our time is now, we won’t get these moments ever again. Let’s make these moments count. 

It is easy to look at everything and start to feel sadness. To look at the calendar and wonder which day it will be. I won’t let myself be held to ransom by Death.

I have reduced my hours at work, temporarily at least, to make the most of this time. Spend time with my family, to take time for myself. I think of my Dad, and I want to make every time I see him a good one. I also look at Nancy too. I want to make sure we have lots of memories and good times to share as well. 

Don’t get me wrong, there are times when I will cry. When it will all get too much. But I need to balance this with some positives. I have to at least try to do this. I can’t feel like a dark shadow of doom hangs over me every day. I can’t pause my life, leave my life in limbo, waiting for the day when ‘it’ happens. And I don’t think that’s fair on my Dad either. Keeping some level of normality must help him somewhat to feel like life goes on too. 

It’s ironic however that the normal you crave, that my Dad and we all want has gone forever. It was gone before we even realised we had lost it. We can’t go back, but we can move forward, and move forward together, smiling not crying. This is an awful situation, but I want to make the best of it, for all our sakes. 

My Spa Day Experience – The Salt Scrub

I had never attended a spa day before so I wasn’t sure what to expect. This weekend I was on a spa day as it was for my sisters’ birthday.  Paper knickers, foil and chanting monks…..see what happened when I went for a Salt Glow treatment….

Now I must say that there is a reason why I haven’t been on a spa day before. I am scared of people, and I am a bit weird. I get anxious worrying about what will happen and what I am supposed to do. I am terribly self-conscious. I just say stupid things and do stupid things. I decided to just go for it, and just push my boundaries and have a Salt Glow Scrub treatment.

Prep

Preparation for the spa day took several hours. I had to shave my legs, my underarms and also attack my ‘bikini’ line which looked more like a ‘shorts’ line. I also had to slap on the make-up to make sure I looked good enough in all the spa day photos.

Arrival

On arrival I was disappointed we were not having prosecco, but then it was pointed out to me it was 10am and some people seem to think this is a little early to start on the bubbles. We were shown around the spa and allocated our robe and towels, obligatory uniform for a spa day.

The Robe

What do you wear under the Robe? Nothing? Underwear? Swimsuit? I chose a swimsuit.

The Salt Scrub

As I entered the room, I could hear Enya in the background. The bed was in front of me, curiously covered in a piece of foil.

“Welcome” gently breathed the therapist.

“Now if you would just change into these paper knickers, and then make yourself comfortable on the bed, then we can begin.” She handed me a small packet and then left the room.

“Oh OK! I’m wearing a swimsuit!” I said, not really sure why.

Paper knickers? I looked down into my hand, and unfolded a paper thong, one size fits all.

I haven’t worn a thong for at least 10 years. And not a paper one at that.

I looked at it for a bit to try to work out what way to put it on. I managed to get it over my hips and it just about covered my muff area. Now I realised why I was told to get rid of that ‘bikini’ area.

The bed appeared to be about 4 feet off the floor, I managed to ungracefully flop onto the bed, and onto the foil sheet, face down.

The lady then entered the room again. There was a small silence, and I wondered what was going to happen next. Then, without further ado, she started to rather vigorously slather my arms and legs in a hot oil, and then scrub the living daylights out of them.

The music changed to monks chanting.

She started to wrap me up in the foil, and then wrapped two towels around me.

“I will just leave you a moment to relax” she whispered, and slinks out the room.

I felt all cocooned, like a baby swaddled or back in the womb. I let myself drift for a moment and felt relaxed. But then I couldn’t stop thinking about a piece of chicken that was ready to roast. I also wasn’t sure when she was coming back and I was worried I was going to fart or something.

Back she comes, and starts to unwrap me. The chicken was ready.

She turns a shower on behind her, and for a moment of horror I think she is going to wash me.

“If you would like to get in the shower, and remove ALL the scrub, and I will be back in a moment”

“Er, do I wear these knickers in the shower?!” I ask, completely not understanding anything.

“Er. Well you can if you want….” She looks at me as if I am insane. I start to get off the bed, and then slip right off the foil sheet. I try and gain my composure.

I get in the shower, wash off the scrub, and manage to dry myself, put my paper knickers back on and then haul myself back on the bed for whatever else is happening.

Back in she glides, and the enya music is cranked up a notch.

She grabs my leg and we are back roughly massaging cream all over my legs. It does smell lovely.

“I shall now do the mini-facial” She announces, which is news to me as I wasn’t expecting her to touch my face.

She takes two cotton pads and gently wipes away all the make up I plastered on myself this morning. Typical.

As she is doing this, I start to become conscious of what my face must look like to her. Am I smirking? Laughing? Do I look calm and relaxed? I almost start to laugh out of nervousness and now I am aware of my face and what my mouth is doing I can’t stop smirk-laughing, Trying to look more calm and relaxed is making me look like a crazy axe murderer. My face has contorted into a strange strangled smile. I close my eyes and try to meditate, be in the moment, but then as I am thinking this I am suddenly aware that she is dabbing my face with her fingers like she’s finger painting. Dib dib dib.

Then everything stops.

There is silence apart from monks chanting. I wonder if the monks ever thought they’d be played in a room with a woman wrapped up like a chicken fillet and wearing paper pants. It’s a funny old world.

And then I hear a tiny pair of cymbals go

“ding”

“That is the end of your treatment” she coos. “And I will just go and fetch you a drink”.  I wonder if she manages to do a few spray tans in the time it takes her to pop in and out each time.

She hands me a glass of water, and tries to get me to buy all the stuff she smeared all over me today.

“I’ll think about it” I say as I sip my water, not intending to buy anything at all.

I thank her, and she leaves me to put on my clothes. I have a dilemma about the paper pants. Do I keep them on? I decide to take them off, and leave them on the bed. I feel sorry for the woman having to throw away other people’s paper pants.

And then I walk off, full of zen, and feeling relaxed, happy to have surivived a spa treatment and ready for my waiting prosecco.

Reasons Not To Go To Bed – Toddler vs. Mum




Toddler:

  • It’s already morning (it’s not)
  • Need a drink without water 
  • Need to read the zoo book
  • Need to go downstairs
  • Need to sing ‘Old McDonald Had a Farm’
  • Legs sore
  • Thumbs sore
  • Upsy Daisy needs to go downstairs 
  •  Need to eat my toast (from breakfast)
  • I need to speak to Grandma
  • Where’s the moon?
  • Where’s Peppa Pig?
  • I need to get back in the bath (that I only spent 2 minutes in because it wasn’t purple)
  • I need to use the Potty
  • I need to bake an orange in my kitchen for the baby 
  • I need my bracelet 
  • Can you sing twinkle twinkle?
  • Wrong duvet cover
  • The light is on
  • The light is off
  • Can we go into the garden to look for worms
  • I need you to Rock me like a baby
  • Where’s blankey

Mum

  • Child is still awake
  • I’m going to drink this glass of wine even if my eyes are half closed
  • I want to watch a programme of some kind 
  • I need to watch orange is the new black before it isn’t 
  • I need to eat
  • I need to drink something today 
  • I need to wee for the first time today
  • I have to wash some clothes as mine are all covered in snot
  • I need to do the dishwasher
  • I just want to lie here for a while
  • I’m worrying about tomorrow 
  • I’m thinking about how little sleep I will get tonight 
  • I’m thinking about dyeing my hair sometime this year 
  • I need to stare at my iPad for half an hour 
  • I want to finish my book
  • What am I going to eat for dinner tomorrow?
  • I want to change jobs
  • Thinking about what life would be like if I didn’t have to work ever
  • I need to call my mum back as she called me three weeks ago
  • I’m having such a great time why would I want to sleep?
  • Painting one fingers nails 
  • Listening to 90s songs on YouTube 
  • Googling former child stars of the 80s
  • It’s morning (it is)

Britmums Live 2014

Do you know what I like most about Christmas?

I like the build up, the excitement beforehand. I like the christmas parties and the good feeling and happy atmosphere that is generally around the place. But when Christmas Day arrives, it’s fun, it’s lovely of course, but it’s never as special or as exciting as the build up has been, for me. It always goes too fast and you never get to do what you want.

I guess you can say I felt like this about Britmums.

I loved Britmums last year. It made me feel a part of something. It made me meet people, have a break from the stresses of being a new Mum, it inspired me and gave me food for thought. I had high expectations, and I don’t know whether this year really met them.

The start for me, was rather disappointing. I must admit, I didn’t like Emma Freud’s keynote speech. It didn’t engage me, interest me or give me any food for thought. I didn’t really ‘get’ what it was about. I saw others laughing, and nodding and were clearly interested in what Emma had to say, so she must have spoken to many who were in the room. I just didn’t really take anything from this talk that could enrich my life, or my blog, in anyway.

The saturday keynote, by Benjamin Brooks-Dutton, was completely different. It really hit me, and I had tears almost straight away. No-one wants to comtemplate what would happen if you lost a partner, but what Benjamin said to us, really hit home. It was surprisingly positive and it made me think we need to make the most of each and every day, and plan for those worst case scenarios.

I was inspired in a few sessions. The session about Writer’s Block was extremely interesting and inspiring; I could have heard the speakers talk about writing for longer. I also attended sessions on podcasting, managed to crane my neck into the super packed G+ session and refreshed my tech knowledge with Ruth – I have read a few other blogs who also felt we could’ve done with a bit more of an intermediate tech session, which I agree.

It made me realise where I want to go with my blog and gave me some ideas .

I loved meeting everyone, and Tried to see as many people as I could. Sometimes it was just a quick hello, and I wish I talked to longer. I missed so many people. I felt really shy and found it hard to approach others. It was lovely to talk to people similar to myself, and to feel a part of something. However this year, there was an undercurrent which I was oblivious to at the time, of people I was with, not really getting on. I know not everyone can get on, that’s life, but when you’re stuck in the middle somewhat, it can take the shine off everything.

I am a solitary person; I always have been. I don’t have many friends. I found it hard to always be around people and not have time to myself, and getting caught up in others issues. But that’s just me. I do tend to walk around in a daydream, to myself, so if I ignored you in anyway, it wasn’t intentional.

My experience of Britmums this year is mixed, both like and dislike. There were some fab moments, moments that made me really laugh. Tims I learnt and soaked up the knowledge. But there were also other times when I felt really quite crappy and despondent. It wasn’t how it was last year.

One observation: and I said this last year: make more time for people be to social! It’s so hard to fit in meeting people and getting to sessions. Friday I feel would be better spent as a networking/ awards side and the serious sessions be on the Saturday.

I have taken a lot away with me, and despite what I’ve said, I do have a lot of ideas and motivation for my blog that has been kicked off by attending. I am feeling more confident in my ability as a writer and I am proud of where I have got to.

I don’t think I’ll be going again. This is purely a personal decision. The sessions and the days are good and worth going to. The social side is fun, but it’s a lot of money to go somewhere to meet with friends. I’d rather meet up separately with my bloggy friends for some fun socials. I’ve got what I can out of 2 years of Britmums, and now I think that’s enough.

Challenges

Screaming. Screaming high pitched and over and over again.

She’s not upset. When I walk up the stairs she has a great big smile on her face.

She’s challenging me.

I am trying my best to ignore. I don’t want to make it a game.

But in the car. In her cot. In her high chair.

It’s hard not to resort to wine, beer or in fact hard spirits. Headache looms and I can feel myself tense.

She knows what she wants to say, but she can’t find the words yet. Her mind must be jumble, a scrabble of words trying to make sense of this mad world.She will point and gesture wildly. She will grizzle and groan. It must be exhausting. I find it exhausting trying to interpret it all.

She finds boxes, and pulls everything out of them. She will rummage through my bag and pull out my purse and all my cards. She threw my shampoo down the toilet today. Little things chipping away at my mind, my soul.

She takes off her shoes and throws them out of her buggy. In my mind I feel like screaming too. Or throwing my shoes.

Yes. She challenges me.

But I must challenge her.

I talk to her, naming objects and singing songs.

Playing games, showing her new ways of doing things.

I give her new foods to try. I wipe her face when she doesn’t like it. I change her bum and make her wash her hair and brush her teeth.

I put her into her cot and tell her when to go to sleep. Sometimes we are early, sometimes we are late.

I stopped giving her a bottle. (She wasn’t drinking out of it at all but she still got very annoyed at me the first time her bedtime milk came in a cup).

When I think about it, I challenge her every day to learn, to grow, to be looked after.

So when she screams, I am trying not to get wound up. I still have a good glug of my wine and chocolate helps. It’s easy to get frustrated and agitated. But I’m trying my best to be calm and collected and to understand things from her point of view. She’s little, I’m not. She’s still figuring it all out – as am I but I guess I have a 30 year head start on her.

Because she can’t keep screaming like this forever. Can she?!

What do you do when you feel challenged by your children?

I am also linking up to the reading residence Word of a The Week as I think “Challenges” sums it up!

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House

A new house to call our own. My first house I have ever bought. If I think too much about it then I may panic slightly.

I am sad to leave this rented house. It has been a good house, full of lovely memories. It’s the only house we’ve rented. Before this, we had a basement flat that was riddled with damp. Everything we owned was covered in black mould.

I’d just had my ectopic pregnancy when we were given notice to leave that flat. The mould taking over the walls were a representation of my mind; black and dark and cold.

The moment I saw this house, I was happy. The sun shone and daffodils were in the garden. The first time I’d felt happy for a while. The relief to leave that flat, where something so horrible had happened, was overwhelming.

I have lived in this house. I have found out I was pregnant in this house. I have brought my newborn baby to this house. I have cried, and laughed and had late night baby feeding cuddles in this house.

I will miss this house. This home that is the first that Bubs has ever known. I find it odd that she will never remember this house. This house where so much has happened for me, and for her.

So, on to pastures new. Our own home, secure, safe and a place to decorate how I like. A garden, a garage, and best of all a DISHWASHER. It’s going to change my life. It’s a brand new house, we will be the first people to impart our memories into its walls.

I can only imagine what fun we will have here. What the future lies in store. I can’t believe I have a place now all of my own. A place for us as a family. Our house, on our street.

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Baby Says What? Baby’s first words and communication

Communication is amazing, isn’t it. Being able to express yourself, and also understand others is pretty immense.

Seeing Bubs working out language is fascinating if also a little terrifying.

One day last week, I was withering on to her whilst she had her dinner. I said something like ‘this time last year you were in mummy’s tummy’ and you know what she did?

SHE PUT HER HANDS ON HER TUMMY.

If we talk about going out, she will find her shoes.

If I ask her where her head is, she will put her hands on it.

If I ask her what noise a dog makes, she sometimes makes a ‘woof’ sound.

It’s pretty weird. She’s growing up she becoming one of US.

SHE UNDERSTANDS WHAT I SAY!

The revelation is akin to Frankenstein’s monster: it’s alive!

She understands so much. Much more than we give her credit for. She can say a few words but she still can’t say Mummy yet which I find a bit disheartening. Closest I get is “yddad”which sounds like daddy backwards. It’s almost like she doesn’t need a name for me as I’m her Gofer.

She says bye, daddy, hello, doggy, yes and woof. Sometimes she points and makes an “ahhhhhh!” Sound quite loudly if she wants something, or wants you to do something. I say sometimes, it’s quite a lot actually. I frantically pick items up around the house whilst she ‘AHHHHHHS’ – hair brushes, toothpaste, a shoe, until I get a ‘ess’ and a nod and we know she wants the ballpoint pen which we then have to hide and distract her from.

One night last week, she woke up at 4am and started gesturing to me to go down the stairs. It was far too early to do that, and I was just totally bowled over by the fact she even did it. I was preparing to get into a heated debate, her wildly gesturing to her bedroom door, when I realised I had to take control here. So I told her we had to sleep and luckily she believed me.

It’s made me think about what I say around her. Unfortunately I do swear a bit so I’m trying my best not to teach her any. Although by now the damage could be done….

She is a true delight to be with now. Dare I say much more than she was when she was a baby. I am enjoying this time much more, I don’t really know what’s in store and it’s exciting.

If a little creepy and terrifying.