My Daughter Has A Best Friend And It’s Not Me

I met my daughter’s best friend through a picture.

My husband and I were coming home from an off the grid weekend in Boston. As we got into a taxi heading home I turned my data on to see a flood of text messages and pictures.

Did you see the pictures I sent over? P.s how was Boston?

The following weekend we met and clicked instantly.

He was a joy to be around, very caring and trusting.

He knew we were expecting before I did.

When I had morning sickness he was there with a concerned look in his eyes.

When I got up to pee which was A LOT he was there. Half asleep but always there.

Those nights when sleep was elusive his comforting purr would lull me back to sleep.

My life changed for the better when I met Milo.

His life drastically changed when he met baby.

He now has someone to grow up with, to play with, to bond with.

My daughter has a best friend and its not me.

Step Outin Style!

 

5 Things All Those Close With Their Siblings Know To Be True

I’ve been meaning to write a post about the sibling bond and what better day to explore that than national siblings day! Going down memory lane brought me to the following five points. And so, Ode to siblings!

Babysitters? Pfft you got each other

My sister is 5 years older than me so we always took care of each other.  Our parents worked a lot. We didn’t always see eye to eye growing up but as time passed being left alone became more enjoyable and less of a chore.

What’s mine is yours. 

No matter the age gap, you know you grew up sharing stuff. I inherited some of my older sibling’s hand me downs. My husband still “borrows” his younger brothers shoes. We both shared a room and a bed with our siblings we even had the bunk bed phase. So yeah sharing is second nature to us.

Cover for me

Shenanigans are a rite of passage. Having a sibling means that at some point or another you have been asked to keep a secret or been picked up from the “library” When the sibling code gets invoked, compliance follows suit.

I want you to meet…

My sister has always been the litmus test with guys I’ve gone out with and vice versa. Before even considering introducing someone to the family that person had to meet my sister first. I always fondly remember how nervous my husband was to meet my sister and brother in law. Meeting my future in-laws was cake, meeting my future brother in law was super nerve-wracking.

Arranged Sisterhood

Our parents pronounced us big sister and little sister. Where one goes the other shall follow. At first my sister DESPISED this. Then something changed.. I went from being the little sister to one of the girls. We were always together.  Time flies, now we are both married with children but that doesn’t stop us. We each make an effort to see each other regularly and chat daily.

I love you big sis.

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xo,

Iggy

 

 

Gross Isn’t It?

I was sitting beside my wife in the delivery room as a nurse attempted the Epidural administration. It’s an unpleasant procedure that forces a large needle into the spine via the lower back. As the tube was shoved home, my wife began to close her eyes, grasping on the bars of her bed. It was horrendous, like something from a horror film. I was shaken. These things happen.

My wife and I talk about the nasty stuff. That’s just our style. It’s not as if we intentionally set out to be completely transparent about our respective grossness. It wasn’t some strategic plan for a happy marriage. It just happened that way. But we’re better for it.

So maybe it was just natural that we talk to each other about our poops and eating more fiber to make them “fluffy and floaty”. She certainly wasn’t squeamish about talking about her period. Neither of us has ever winced about talking about rashes or blemishes or sickness. We see no shame in the things that come out of our bodies. We don’t worry about appearing perfectly put together, or making love before a shower, or performing personal hygiene tasks side by side.

I do understand that some couples lean heavy on maintaining a sense of “mystery”. Some women refuse to be seen without makeup or experience shame in menstruation. Some men go to extraordinary lengths not to talk about their buttholes or the health of their sexual organs. I’ve read that some couples have separate bathrooms or refuse to be in one at the same time, for fear that they won’t be desirable anymore.

My wife went through the Epidural procedure like a champ! She’s all healed up. Better yet, she hasn’t changed in my eyes. Talking about the gross stuff means that she can be covered in bloody vomit in an ER and still be the absolute love of my life, not when she’s cleaned up, but in that moment when she looks, feels and smells like crap.

Setting Boundaries With Grandparents

The bond between a grandchild and a grandparent is so very special. While the excitement of a newborn may cause some grandparents to”forget” about your very clear and concise instructions when caring for your child, it doesn’t make it okay.

We all know that setting boundaries with our children might pose challenges, but nothing prepares a new parent for telling their own parent “no!”. Below is a list which my wife and I have experienced and we hope will help new parents implement boundaries and establish a healthy special relationship between your child and their grandparents (with your sanity — still intact).

Put yourself in their shoes

Chances are your parents and partner’s parents have been hoping, wishing, and praying for a grandchild before you even started trying for a baby. And why wouldn’t they? A grandchild is the universe’s way of granting them a second chance at reliving the best years of their youth — nurturing and loving. Garnering compassion for their experience will take the sting out of their snubs and help you communicate your requests more effectively.

Express gratitude

Remember that stressful week (which one?) that you and your partner were in dire need of a day away of the house or epic sleep-in? In the heat of the moment, it’s easy to forget the countless ways that grandparents save the day. Acknowledge and express gratitude for the big and small ways that they enable you to enjoy the best parts of parenthood, before you address the outlandish gift they bought your child (that you specifically told them not to).

Keep your requests simple 

Work with your partner to discover your non-negotiable requests and express them to all grandparents clearly, concisely, and often (and when necessary, write them down)! The simpler the requests, the simpler they are to abide.

When a boundary is crossed, address it 

This can be the most uncomfortable step of all. When a boundary is crossed, it’s imperative that you address the one specific boundary (and forget the many past offenses), use “I” statements to express how violating your boundary made you feel, and repeat step three by expressing a clear and concise request moving forward.

Maintain your boundary

The essence of setting boundaries is to teach people how to treat you. Therefore, you can’t set a boundary with someone and take care of them at the same time. Be mindful that once you implement a clear boundary, you will (probably) receive a barrage of push back. Guilt and entitlement are grandparent favourites!

Honour your space, speak your truth — the rest is up to them!

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Some People Cope Well With Exhaustion – I Am Not One Of Them

Some people cope well with exhaustion. I am not one of them.

Some people get up after a rotten night’s sleep, try to wake themselves with a hot shower, then slug back a coffee or two.

By the time they’ve left the house, you wouldn’t know they’d hardly slept.

I am not one of those people.

When I’ve slept badly, the whole world knows about it.

First, there’s the aesthetics.

When I’m tired, I don’t have the energy to even look in a mirror, let alone attend to the problems I would spot if I were to do such a thing.

Hence, I sport the ‘bed head’ look all day.

But it’s not just my hair that looks as though I’ve just climbed out from under the sheets.

Then there’s my mood.

You know those Snickers ads that go, ‘You’re not you when you’re hungry?’.

That.

Except, substitute ‘hungry’ for ‘tired’.

Or, actually, add ‘tired’ onto ‘hungry’. Because when I’m tired, I’m usually also starving.

I also figure that consuming extra energy might help substitute for lack of sleep, kind of like some math equation.

No sleep + lots of sugar = more awake.

I also look to coffee as my saviour but get so disappointed when I’ve finished another cup and it doesn’t magically erase my exhaustion.

Each time I finish another cup of coffee, I look at my mug in confusion.

Isn’t caffeine meant to cure all the things?

The truth is, just like they say in that Snickers ad, I’m not me when I’m tired.

Instead, my brain moves at sloth-like speed.

Simple things seem impossibly hard.

Like, right now I’m meant to be writing this blog, but I’m trying to summon the energy to get off the couch and actually be useful.

So far, I’ve made it off the couch once – and that was to grab some chocolate. I figured I needed the energy first to fuel the brainpower needed to write… And now I’m just waiting for that sugar rush to kick in and force me into awareness.

My husband skills also dip a notch or two when I’m this fried.

I love my wife with all my heart, but it’s so hard to keep track of everything going on when all me wants to do is lie on the couch.

My wife was talking about something something something something earlier, and I must have had a particularly blank look on my face because she stopped and said, “Babe, are you even listening to me?”

The problem was, I was listening.

I wasn’t daydreaming, my mind wasn’t elsewhere, and yet her words were entering my brain and sitting next to each other in a neat little line without making any sense.

The annoying thing is, my wife also barely got any sleep last night.

But does she whine and moan and act like the whole world is coming to an end because she’s tired?

Nuh-uh.

The woman powers on, slugging back coffee and cake and continuing on with life and taking care of our daughter.

In fact, if you were to see her now, you wouldn’t even know she’d had a rotten night’s sleep.

Which goes to show that some people cope well with exhaustion.

I just wish I was one of them.

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Reasons I Fail At Sleeping While The Baby Sleeps

“Sleep while the baby sleeps!” Heard that piece of advice before? You’re not alone. It’s one of those well-worn parenting clichés, like “this too shall pass” and “enjoy every moment”. Well, I don’t know about you, but I fail spectacularly at sleeping while the baby sleeps. And there are a number of reasons why…

Excessive Coffee Consumption

The problem with being so sleep deprived your eyeballs hurt is that you drink far too much coffee. And what happens when you drink too much of that delicious caffeinated beverage? Yeah – not a lot of napping, that’s for sure. Wired yet still beyond tired. What a combo!

The Unexpected Drop-In

You know the drill – the day you decide to give the “baby is asleep, time for a nap” you receive the “I’m just around the corner, up for a visit?” phone call from a well-meaning friend or relative. Don’t get me wrong, company is lovely. But when you are trying to sleep, it’s not.

I Choose Sexy Time Over Sleepy Time

Look, I’m not saying sleep is sacrificed for sexy time very often. What I am saying, though, is that sometimes a husband and wife have needs, you know? And hey, the opportunities for special time with your significant other can be few and far between when you’re a parent.

The Phantom Baby Cries

You know what I mean, right? Your baby’s been crying all night but you finally get her down to sleep and you’re relishing the sweet sound of silence. You can finally relax. Except as soon as your head touches that pillow, you hear the baby cry. And cry. And cry. When you get up to investigate, however, baby is sleeping soundly. You, on the other hand, are not.

I Choose A Shower Instead

As much as my wife and I love the scent of Milk and Baby Spew, there comes a time when you really just need a shower.

The Internet (Specifically Cat Content)

“I’ll just quickly check Pinterest in bed,” I’d say. “Then I’ll have a nap for sure.” Forty-five minutes later and I’m watching YouTube’s “10 Cutest Kitten Videos of All Time” playlist.

On repeat.

Still awake.

Fail.

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Why It’s Important To Travel With Your Partner Before Marriage

Growing up, travel wasn’t done very often and when our family got around to traveling we always went to visit family. The notion of travelling somewhere where there wouldn’t be a family member waiting for us at the airport was unheard of.

Whenever we traveled it served a purpose. Either to visit a sick relative, to handle some business in the homeland, or to spend time with my grandparents. We never took a tour or booked a hotel and we never stepped out of our comfort zone.

My family came to this country out of necessity so the idea of me wanting to explore other parts of it for the fun of it was puzzling. Why would I want to leave to go somewhere where I don’t speak the language thereby risking my safety?

It took some time but soon enough I was travelling to places where the purpose was to explore, learn and have fun even if that meant getting lost.

Traveling with a companion be it a friend or a partner will either strengthen your bond with that person or it will break it down. Travel is a balance of detailed planning which requires compromise. Some people like to go with the flow others like to have every single moment planned. Patience and adaptability are also necessary when things don’t always go according to plan. When you travel with the right person you’ll know because it will be effortless and enjoyable. Missing a flight or train will be crappy but you’ll look back on it and laugh. You’ll look forward to your new adventures together and reminisce fondly on past trips. When you don’t it will be draining and frustrating with alarm bells ringing so loud you can’t ignore it.

If you are anxious about traveling with a partner for fear that any underlying problems will come forward think that eventually those problems if they are actually there will catch up to you. Take the plunge you could be pleasantly surprised. I knew I was going to marry my husband after we took our first trip because we would grow together in travel. Now that we have our daughter we are so thrilled to explore the world with her thus creating memories we will all look back on years from now.

 

Feline Fury – The One About The Dog

Lady Butler,

Who or what is that furry thing? Never mind. Let me address the source.

Heh….Heh….what is wrong with your tail? Oh boy, you sure do move around a lot.

Why are you here?

HEY! What are you trying to sniff back there?

Excuse me? What do you think you are doing eating my food?!

Back off those are my toys, even though I hardly play with them.

WILL YOU STAY STILL?! Are you here to stay?

You sniff back there one more time, I am going to scratch you! Look at these paws! I am serious!

Why is your tongue out? Oh….you are grooming Lady Butler….yeah, I do that on a regular basis. I do not need help in that department. Just in case you were wondering.

Oh, you are leaving now? I’d say mi casa es su casa, but I would be lying.

Hopefully this will be the first and last time I see you.

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How Is Married Life?

The question that has plagued all newlyweds from the first day they got married and for apparently the years to come after the wedding. My wife and I got married about a year ago and this question still seems like an appropriate question to ask. It’s usually asked by those people that have lost touch with my wife and I or do not see us often and have no idea what to say since they don’t know what’s going on in our lives anymore. My problem with this question is that it really has no answer.

The question can not be answered with a simple, “good,” “bad,” “I hate it,” “It’s the best fucking thing in the world” because the answer to this question depends on what happened that day, what happened that hour, or what happened five minutes ago. It depends on what has happened between you and your partner on every single moment of your married life.

If you had asked me how married life was last month when wifey surprised me with the best birthday party ever, I would have said something along the lines of “married life is amazing!” If you had asked her a couple days ago when she went to use the bathroom and was greeted by what can only be described as the Mount Olympus of shits, she would have said something like, “it is disgusting and so hard!”

So to answer this question for all those people asking, “Married life is how you take every single moment of every single day… so stop asking!”

To married people who ask this question of other married people: You know very well what marriage is like!

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