Breast feeding is the most natural of things to do as a mother, but for some really cruel reason it can also be one of the hardest. In the early days, a new mum has to contend with latching issues, cracked nipples, and painfully engorged boobs the size of your newborns head, all whilst recovering from delivery. Add to that constant demand feeding which can have a baby stuck to your sore boobs all day long, reducing you to little more than a cow! It’s easy to understand why some women struggle to cope and others just throw in the towel.
With time and experience things do settle down and before long mum and bub are singing to the same tune. However, as life returns to some sort of normality, breast feeding mothers are faced with new issues, namely maintaining good milk supply. Day to day life can get the better of us and before you know it, you’re running around like a crazy person trying to meet your child’s demands and get everything else done at the same time. I know I fall into the bad habit of not eating or drinking enough when I’m really busy and when breast feeding, I found my supply dropped on those days. But never fear, there is an awesome little treat on the market that helps to boost supply. I’m talking about lactation (sounds like such a dirty word!) cookies. Continue reading →
Let me set the scene, I’m currently sitting on a flight to Singapore, four hours into the trip, eyes red and puffy after having to say good bye to my little man at the airport and then backing it up with two tear jerking inflight films. Talk about making great movie choices. I was already feeling incredibly emotional after leaving my sick son behind for a week, and then I picked the two biggest chick flicks to watch. Hi5 you idiot!
To put it in context, I’m not normally a very emotional person. I liken myself to the ice queen. I’m a harden the f**k up kinda person. If someone is having a cry for no good reason (boohoo, you broke your nail. Harden up!), I’m the first person to roll my eyes and walk away. I lack the ability to make someone having a sook feel better. No matter how hard I try, I tend to come across as being inconsiderate and insincere. Lets just say I’m not the person you want around when you’re having a cry for the sake of having a cry.
Based on this, it’s very rare that this girl busts out a real good cry and let me tell you, I feel like I’ve just made up for a years worth of crying in the past few hours. I have a splitting headache, which I’m assuming is a side effect of the crying. My makeup has run half way down my face (note to self, invest in some good waterproof mascara) and on two separate occasions the lovely cabin staff have come over with a concerned look on their faces to see if I was ok. No doubt, they walked behind the blinds and told the other staff that there is a crazy woman in business crying like a child, but despite how embarrassed I was, I couldn’t stop. Continue reading →
The very nature of my job is one that requires me to regularly travel both within Australia and internationally. To be honest, this was initially what really drew me to the role. I love love love travelling (well really, who doesn’t?) and I’ve been incredibly fortunate to travel all over the world. To say I have the travel bug is definitely an understatement, so the idea of being able to see more of the world and have someone else pay for it, is my kinda awesome.
Generally speaking, I’m required to travel to Asia (mostly to Singapore) a couple of times a year and interstate (to either Adelaide, Canberra or Brisbane) every second month. It was great in the beginning, but after a while travelling to the same old places all the time starts to wear a bit thin (and really I don’t have to travel that much). To make matter worse, I was getting called to Singapore at the drop of a hat for fly in fly out meetings. I would literally spend more time in transit than I did on the floor.
As annoying and exhausting as it was, for the most part I accepted it as just being part of my job, and really there are other people that would kill for the opportunity to travel, so who am I to complain? That was until I had a child. Before children, it was relatively easy to reorganise my schedule (although I didn’t think it was easy at the time), so if I had to travel at short notice, I’d be annoyed, but I’d change a few things around and a couple of days later I was off. It’s just not that easy anymore. I can’t just up an leave, I have a fully dependant little person to think about.
It’s official, my beautiful, precious and content baby boy has turned feral. This little man is and will always be the apple in my eye, so I hate saying that about him, but at the end of the day I call it as I see it and if the kid has taken a turn for the worst I won’t hide from it.
Maybe feral is a bit harsh (I’m clearly having an attack on the guilts) but according to my friend Google it can be defined as
I’m in the midst of filling my one year old sons wardrobe with a stack of super cute pieces for the colder months. In my search I’ve come across some great pieces that are too good not to share, so if you’ve got a little man like I do, get your hands on some of these before they’re gone.
For the last year I’ve dragged my young son all over town to lunch and brunch at some of the best cafes Melbourne has to offer. For the most part he’s been a great partner in crime. He goes where I want to go and eats what I want to eat, it’s my idea of the perfect partnership, but today was his chance to get even, today he was ‘that’ kid.
You know the kid I’m talking about, the one that cries, screams, carries on in the perfect way to drive everyone within a 500m radius insane. Yep, this week it was my kid. I looked at him in his psycho child state and desperately wanted him to stop. I did everything – toys, food and any other means of distraction, but the kid wouldn’t stop. I literally just wanted the ground to open and swallow me up.
Late last year I did a post on my tips for travelling with a baby (read about it here) after we had a pretty successful trip up to Port Douglas with our 7 month old son. With that experience under our belts we decided for Easter to take a chance and travel overseas with the little guy, but don’t get too excited, we didn’t cross the globe (I’m not ready to endure a long haul flight with a baby, but hats off to anyone who is) instead we opted for the relatively short five hour flight over to Fiji. For the most part, we had a great trip, but there were a few things that I’d definitely do differently next time, so here is version 2.0 of travelling with a baby. Continue reading →
With this week comes a wave of emotion as my little man turns one. It’s such a big milestone in his life and I really can’t believe how much he has grown and changed in the last year. As enjoyable as it is to watch him grow, it also make me a little sad. I’m not ready to lose my baby yet. I know , I know, he’s still very much a baby, but I feel like he’s growing so quickly and with every new thing he learns to do, the quicker he’ll be running away from me.
Think I’m being a drama queen? Well maybe I am being a little dramatic, but I just don’t want him to grow up so quickly. Can’t we slow down the whole process? Can’t he be a baby for a bit longer?
The last year with him has been one of the best in my life. Never did I fully appreciate how much purpose he would provide me. Everyone told me that it would happen, but you never really know what it’s like until you experience it for yourself. To think that this little person has enriched our lives to an extent that we can’t remember a time without him, nor would we want to go back to that time really amazes me. Along the way there have been some really hard days, where I questioned why on earth anyone would want to put themselves through this, but realistically they don’t compare to the majority of joyous and rewarding days.
I don’t know where the time has gone, but I’ve already been back at work for a month. Yep, how the hell did that happen? Before I went back I shared my thoughts about returning to work (read about it here), so now I’m looking at it from the other side, from the perspective of a working mum.
I’m new to this working mum business, but never did I think it would be this hard to juggle everything. I’m not by any means sooking, because that wouldn’t be fair to all of the women that do this every day and just get on with it, but it’s definitely a huge adjustment. The hardest thing is finding that balance between being a loving present mum and being fulfilled in my career. So many people have told me that I can’t have both, but I don’t want to listen to the naysayers, I desperately want to make it work for both of us.
Initially, I only planned to go back to work three days a week, but that didn’t go down all that well with my boss, so after some negotiation, we agreed that I’d go back to work four days a week, three in the office and one from home. My job has always been really demanding, so it was pretty normal for me to put in massive days in the office to stay on top of things, but I was ignorantly hoping that things would be different when I went back. What an idiot! One day back in the office and I was right back into my old routine pulling 10-12 hour days. I was so flat out that I didn’t even have time to check in, let alone even think about my little man. When I realised it was already 6pm and I hadn’t stopped to see how he was going, I felt so guilty. To make me feel even worse, by the time I got home, he was ready to go to bed, so I didn’t get to spend any time with him at all.
So I’m going back to work this month and that’s about where my good mood turns south.
No, I shouldn’t say that, in many ways I’m looking forward to going back to work, it’ll be nice to resume my career which I worked so bloody hard for and put on hold to have a baby (no regrets of course, best thing I’ve ever done). It’ll also be really nice to make some of my own coin again. I, like so many others had to self fund my maternity leave, I got the government money which is better than nothing, but I didn’t get a penny from my work, not even a congratulations your having a baby, here is a bonus for all of your hard work and enjoy your year away – zip, nada, nothing!
Fortunately the husband and I had planned ahead and saved enough money so that I could take a year off and financially we’d be ok. Even though we did that I still felt a little guilty going out and spending up a storm as he went to work everyday. Having said that he never complained or made me feel guilty, he was all for me enjoying this time with our son and really making the most of my time away from work.