Tag Archives: children

Mom-In-Training: Happiness

Since Nid was born, I have done everything in my power to be the perfect mom to her. For someone who has never held a baby until her own was born, being a perfect mom has been a struggle and required a lot of extra effort every day.

Many people in my circle know that I don’t like children and even after having my own, that hasn’t changed. I don’t know what it is, I never liked children before and even now I find them annoying. I mean now that Nid is getting older, I definitely enjoy her company more but when she was younger I had no clue with what to do with her. I’m not one of those women that can sit there and play with a baby and go goo gaga all over them, that’s just not me and it never was.

Don’t get me wrong it doesn’t mean that I didn’t or don’t show her love and affection because I do. I just never had the tolerance to sit there and play and pretend to enjoy playing with her, that was her dad’s job. Me and her do other fun things together, like baking, art, crafts, mother-daughter spa days or movie nights.

But the fact of the matter is that I have always tried to be that perfect mom we read about in books and magazines. I try to make sure the house was clean, she always had a snack or food to eat, had clean nice clothes to wear, was learning. Pretty much, I took care of her in every which way possible and always attended to her needs.

However, us moms put so much effort into being that perfect mom because TV, social media, movies and magazines portray moms as these superwomen that can be and do all. My own mother was one of those superwomen; there is not a damn thing she didn’t do for us or her husband and I’m thankful for all she did. Now, when I look at her and think back about growing up, I wonder if my perfect, superwoman mother was happy or not.

Moms put so much emotion and energy into making sure their family and home are well-taken care of that they forget to take care of their own wellbeing and happiness; always putting everyone else’s needs before their own. Ten years ago, my mother would never admit that she wasn’t happy. But the more I get to know her and have confidential conversations with her after becoming an adult, the more I realize she hasn’t truly been happy for a long time. Yes, seeing her children succeed, get married, have families of their own brought her happiness as a mother but as a human being was she happy within herself? I don’t believe so.

I think many women forget that while being the perfect mother, you also need to be happy as a human being. If you’re not happy as a person you could do anything in the world to be the perfect mom and your child will not grow up feeling loved, cared for or happy because your emotional turmoil with yourself will reflect on your children. They will feel the pressure of your unhappiness and it will effect them in the long-run.

I realized that maybe a year or two ago when I took a step back, looked at myself and realized that I was doing everything I should as a mom, wife, daughter, sister and friend. The only thing was I couldn’t see happiness on Nid’s face while doing everything I should be doing for her. She was acting out, getting in way more trouble, having tantrums and not listening when I asked her to do something. The reality was that she was not happy because I was not happy. My depression, anger and anxiety was wearing off on my child and you could clearly see it. Although, we laughed and had fun, as a child, she was not happy.

The more I think about it, the more I realize that my daughter doesn’t need a perfect mom or a perfect home. What she needs is a happy mom and a happy place to come home to; where love was ample and happiness reflected in everything around her.

A year ago, I began this journey of finding myself and working on making myself happy. At times that means I am choosing myself over everyone and everything else. It means I am being a little selfish when it comes to my mental, physical and spiritual health. It means I am working on making sure I am happy as a mother, wife, daughter, sister, and friend but more importantly as a person. It has been a struggle to put my needs first and I am very slowly crawling towards prioritizing myself first but I’m getting there. Slowly but surely. And it shows when I look at Nid and how she behaves. I know I still have a lot more work to do to get to where I should be but any progress forward is good progress.

It’s simple; choose you first because if you’re not happy as a person, then you’ll never be happy playing all the roles you play in the lives of others.

~Tamana

What Are We Leaving Our Children Behind To?

People encourage me to have another child. My parents, relatives, friends and even regulars at the restaurant tell me that I should have another child before Nid gets too old. I tell them I’m not ready and physiologically and financially cannot afford another child right now.

The fact of the matter is that I am horrified to have the one that I already have grow up in this world and what it’s becoming. Isis killing the Europeans. Americans killing Americans. A race fight. Honour killings. Pedophiles. Gang rapes. People overdosing on drugs that even experts can’t explain. The world is pretty much fucked and it’s just going to get worst.

It scares me shitless thinking my little Nid will one day walk this earth without her parents. How will she deal with everything this world is turning into? How will she cope with all of this? Especially, when her own parents are having a hell of a time handling everything happening in the world.

Sometimes I turn on the news first thing in the morning and nearly end up crying. It’s devastating seeing what human beings are doing to each other and to our planet. How can I imagine another child in this world? I mean, tough luck for Nidhi, she was a golden child so she’s here without a choice of her’s or mine. And I will do everything in my power to leave her in a place where she is strong, brave and capable of handling anything that comes her way. But to intentionally bring another child into this world knowing everything that is happening seems a bit stupid. 

On the flip side, I think God forbid something were to happen to Dev and I, at least Nid would have a sibling. She would need a sibling and companion who knew exactly what she was going through. 

But will they actually be there for each other? I mean, look at me and my brother, we haven’t spoken in nearly 10 years and quite frankly, I’m happy it’s that way. So when I think about that relationship, I figure its best not to have a sibling at all. But that’s my own drama that we’ll keep out of this post for the sake of sanity.

The important matter is that if I bring another child into this world knowing that I haven’t done anything to better it would be a sin and lack of compassion for this world and my children. So, I’ve decided to pay it forward. As most of you know, I can be an incredibly selfish person but equally caring and loving. I am taking a new step in my life to help others and give a little back to this sometimes bitter world. 

Along with changing my career completely so I may help people (details to come), I am also going to be taking Nid with me to help clean our community on afternoon walks on the weekends. Aside from that, I will begin collecting clothes, toys, food from my own home to donate to shelters for youth. I think our youth need the most support right now because after we leave, it will be them that walk this earth and I hope with my efforts, I can change someone’s life for the betterment of their future and cause them to do a little good. 

I know, it’s not a lot but every effort helps and will better our world a bit at a time. I hope my new outlook to better this world for my child, will spark a flame inside of you to also do a little for the betterment of your children and the world they’ll live in. 

Dearest Kindergarten Teachers

Dearest Kindergarten Teachers:

I don’t know how to begin my note as my heart is sore and eyes wet from seeing my little kiddo crying as she’s being pulled away from me at the gates of the kindergarten entrance. I know you have many other children to look after and your job is one of the toughest in the world. You take care of, nurture and teach our children many of the things they will need in their lifetime. I also know, some of you are overwhelmed with the amount of children you have in your class as the numbers increase year after year.

But I only have the one and she is my life, my happiness, my love and the reason for me being who I am. I would hope that when I come to drop her off and when she doesn’t so easily let go of my hand and tears pour out of her eyes, that you would show a little compassion for the two of us. I too try very hard every day to push back my tears as you or your assistant pull her away from me. I would hope that you could give me a minute to calm her down and reassure her that everything will be alright and that school is where she needs to be at this time. 

I know you’ve done this a hundred times or more before. But me and my child have not and we are still adjusting. Please show some compassion and let me give my little one another hug before you take her away. 

Thanks.

Re-Blogged: A Letter from a Working Mother to a Stay-At-Home Mother, and vice versa

RE-BLOGGED FROM: The Healthy Doctor

Dear Stay-At-Home Mum

Some people have been questioning what you do at home all day. I know what you do. I know because I’m a mum and for a while I did it too. 

I know you do unpaid work, often thankless work, which starts the moment you wake up, and doesn’t even end when you go to sleep. I know you work weekends and nights, with no discernible end to your day or working week. I know the rewards are joyous but few.

I know that you seldom have a hot cup of coffee or tea. I know that your attention is always divided, often diverted from a moment to moment basis, and you cannot ever count on completing a task in the one go. I know that you probably don’t get any down time when you’re on your own at home, unless you have a single child who still naps in the daytime.

I know the challenges you deal with daily, usually with no peer support or backup. The toddler tantrums, the toilet training accidents, the food battles, the food on the floor, the crayons on the wall, the sibling rivalry, the baby that never seems to stop crying. I know how the work seems incessant, like an endless cycle – you shop for food, prepare it, cook it, attempt to feed it to your children, clean it off the floor, wash the dishes, and repeat in three hours.

I know you fantasise about having an hour to yourself to eat your lunch in peace, or about having an afternoon nap. I know you sometimes wonder if it’s all worth it, and feel envious of your friends who are having coffee breaks at work. I know that sometimes when your partner gets home in the evening after his work is done, he wants to put his feet up exactly when you need a break the most, and this can bring you to tears. 

I know that you are misunderstood by so many who do not appreciate the difficulties of caring for small children on your own, all day, and refer to you as joining the “latte set”. They imagine you spend your day sipping coffee while your children play quietly. I know you miss your financial independence. I know you feel amused and sometimes annoyed when others proclaim “TGIF!” because to you every day is the same – there is no Friday, no break from your job. I know that many people do not understand that you work – you simply work an unpaid job at home.

SAHM, I don’t know how you do it. I admire your infinite patience, your ability to face each day cheerfully and bring joy into your children’s lives even when they wear you down. I admire your dedication to being a constant presence in your children’s lives even if it isn’t always easy. I admire the way you work without expecting any reward – no promotions, no fame, no salary. I know you want your children to feel important and loved, and SAHM, you do this the best.

I just wanted you to know that I understand. We’re both mothers. And I know.

Love from the trenches

Working Mum

Dear Working Mum

I know you sometimes get judged by others for leaving your children in the care of others to work. Some people imply that you don’t love your children as much as us SAHMs do, and that it’s best for children to be at home with their mothers.

How can they say this about you? I know you love your children just as much as any other mother. I know that going back to work was no easy decision. You weighed up the pros and cons, long before you conceived a baby. It has always been one of the most important decisions of your life. You thought about this even while you were in high school and were choosing subjects for Grade 11.

I see you everywhere. You are the doctor I take my children to when they are sick. You’re my child’s allergist, the one who diagnosed her peanut allergy. You’re the physiotherapist who treated my husband’s back. You’re the accountant who does our tax returns. My son’s primary school teacher. The director of our childcare centre. My daughter’s gymnastics teacher. The real estate agent who sold our house. What sort of world would it be if you hadn’t been there for us? If you had succumbed to the pressures of those who insisted a mother’s place had to be in the home?

I know you weigh up every job to see if it will suit your family. I know you wake up an hour before everyone else does, just so you can get some exercise done or some quiet time. I know that you have attended meetings after being up all night with your toddler. I know that when you come home in the evening, your “second shift” begins. The nay-sayers don’t understand that you run a household AND hold a job. You come home, cook dinner, bath your children and read them stories. You tuck them in and kiss them goodnight. You pay the bills, do the grocery shopping, the laundry, the dishes, just like every other mother does.

I know that you often feel guilty about having any more time away from your children so you sacrifice your leisure time. I know you can’t bring yourself to take a “day off” for yourself when your children are at daycare. I know you accept that work is your “time off” for now. I know that when you are at work you don’t waste a single minute. I know you eat your lunch at your desk, you don’t go out for coffee, and you show complete dedication and concentration to your job. You chose to be there after all. You want to be there.

I know how discerning you are about who is looking after your children, and that many long daycare centres offer excellent care. I know you only leave your children in a place where you confident they are loved and well looked after. I know that you spend many days caring for your children at home when they are sick, and sacrifice your pay. I know that you secretly enjoy these days, and revel in being able to be with your children.

I know that sometimes you feel guilty about not being there all the time. But WM, I know this. You are setting a wonderful example to your children. You are showing them that a woman can have a career, contribute in some way outside the home, and still be a loving mother. You are showing your daughters that they can do anything they want to do in life. You are displaying strength, endurance, dedication, tenacity, and you do it with so much joy and love.

I just wanted you to know I understand. Because we’re both mothers.

Love from the trenches

Stay-At-Home Mum

Follow me on Facebook

I’m also on Twitter

Carolyn is a medical doctor and researcher. She blogs about health and her journey to discover the Nirvana of work-family balance. She has a toddler and a three-year-old and a wonderful husband, and returned to full-time work/study in February 2014. In her “spare time” she enjoys running and the occasional eating of cupcakes.

Happy Mother’s Day!

20130512-154221.jpg

Happy Mother’s Day!

Mothers are the foundation of every family. They are the keepers of secrets and hearts. They are our first loves and our last want. For without them, we would all be lost and not exist.

Today I wish my mom and all the other mothers out there a very Happy Mother’s Day and hope we children can give you back at least a little bit of love and care to sum up to the amount you give us every day.

Love you always and with all our hearts, Mom and Grandma! 💕

Say YES To Valentine’s Day

A couple of years ago, I wrote a post; Say NO To Valentine’s Day. At the time, I thought of Valentine’s Day being a commercial holiday for manufacturers and retailers to cash-in on love-crazed couples. I didn’t think it was a valid holiday and was just a day for the big boys to make hundreds of thousands of dollars.

One of my readers, Theresa left me the following comment:

Unfortunately the commercialization is evident with almost every holiday, just the fact that stores begin stocking & preparing well before the previous holiday hits is crazy.

I’m a bit older than you…I spent 8 years in a crappy, often abusive marriage. I recently celebrated 9 years of a marriage with a man who is my best friend. Whether it’s my age or the length of time I’ve been married I don’t know, but I do appreciate Valentine’s Day and all the romantic stuff associated with it. My husband & I say ‘I love you’ every day, we have snuggle time, we make time for dates…I suppose for me it’s a day for a little extra specialness

After being married and having a baby, I now realize what Theresa meant. Although, D and I do special things for each other every day, it’s still important to have that day to feel extra special. With all the havoc of daily lives and routines, romance sometimes needs a little more importance and what better way to indulge in it than on Valentine’s Day when the rest of the world is celebrating too!

Although, D didn’t really plan anything special for our day, I surprised him with a romantic candlelight dinner at home. I made roasted chicken, veggies, potatoes and bought wine for the evening. I even lit candles all through the house. Ni spent the even with my parents , so that after dinner, D and I could go for a nice long drive. Here’s some pictures of our dinner arrangements (courtesy of moi)!

20130220-093218.jpg

20130220-093208.jpg

He was really surprised when he walked into the house and saw candles all over the place and I really enjoyed getting all dressed up and sitting with and having dinner. We even danced in each-other’s arms for a while before heading out. It was truly an amazing night and it rekindled our love all over again.

So, as I said I few years ago, it really isn’t important to buy big fancy, expensive gifts; what matters is how you feel and how you make your loved one feel. That’s what Valentine’s Day is really all about.

Happy belated Valentine’s Day, lovies!

My bucket list starts with: Skydiving

Skydiving
The fascination of being able to fly has been with me since I was a child. I want to reach up at the clouds and float through them. Planes, the sky and clouds have always intrigued me. Jumping out of a plane, thousands of feet in the air and letting the adrenaline rush through me has been a dream I’ve longed to experience. I just need to find a partner to do it with and the balls to get up there!

 

Travel the World
I want to drive across Canada and the United States. Then I want to catch a plane and fly over to Africa, Asia, Russia and Europe. This would be a 2-3 year trip around the world. I’d live in each city a few weeks or months and work to cover my expenses.

 

Own a Lounge
It has been a dream and goal of mine to one day own a lounge/club. 5 rooms, 5 themes, 5 genres and only open Thursday – Sunday. Monday – Wednesday, I’d transform it into a cafe/lounge.

 

Find Unconditional Love
I’ve loved and been loved before. But there were always conditions. There was always a reason or circumstance. For once, I’d like to find someone to love me the way I’d like to love them. No limitations. No conditions. No circumstances. No reasons. Just pure love. Flaws and all. Faults and all.

 

Give Birth
At-the-moment, children don’t really excite me. But one day, I’d like to have a couple of my own. I’ve got their names picked out. The way I want to decorate their bedrooms and the things I want to teach them. I just need to find Mr.Forever and then get married and plan it all out!

 

 

Powered by Plinky