New Year’s Posts
Many bloggers had posts filled with resolutions. But I have to admire the way Julia from Unwritten wrote about 2014 as a person in Dear 2014
She starts off:
I tried to avoid dealing with you.
I kept thinking that I could just kind of put you into a neat little box, take a deep breath and go straight to 2015.
But no matter how hard I tried to do this, I couldn’t. Because you wouldn’t let up. You with your niggly little voice. You with your BIG presence breathing down my neck.
And then I like this part:
You showed me that I am stronger and more resilient than I think, that I AM enough, that my family and friends are ALL that I need (although a holiday would be nice, thank you very much), that I am more in tune with the emotions of others than I care to admit that my instincts will NEVER fail me and that my kids are going to be just fine. You forced me to PAUSE which I think was the best thing that I could have done for myself and my sanity.
Melinda says in I was teabagged in 2014
I have no idea what this new year has in store for me, and instead of new year resolutions I’m going to try make daily ones. To be a little kinder. To be a little gentler. To be a lot stronger. To be fair. To be in the moment. To appreciate the good and the bad. To love more. To worry less. To let go when I need to. To hold on tight when I need to. To laugh big deep belly laughs. To say what I think and to know what I want. To not settle. To not compromise.
I really like Stacey’s post about simplifying our life this year with The Year of the No Jar.
The last thing I need is a lengthy list of resolutions dragging behind me. How sad, like the crumpled tin cans hop-skippety-popping behind a “Just Married” car.
I’m not going to stress overmuch about losing weight, or getting a regular pedicure, or being Class Mom. If anything, I’m going to do LESS. I am going to embrace the Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck.
I wrote a post about my past blogging year and also how all my resolutions did not pan out in Lessons from 2014:
Perhaps it’s kinder to appreciate the journey rather than get fixated with destinations. They say luck happens when preparation meets opportunity so I want to be prepared. Tidy up my blog. Tidy up my house. And cut myself some slack if some days are just messy because I’d rather spend time with my boy.
Karien from Running the Race had a post in World Mom’s Blog. She wrote about how even though 2014 was so awful, she still feels Blessed.
No matter how dire our situation seemed, we would always, without exception, cross paths with someone whose situation was far worse. In every single instance, however, I was humbled by how they handled their situation with grace and even joy.
Laura had a great post Why I have decided to throw my scale away
Linked to my word [nourish] is my need to nourish myself by accepting who I am physically!
Back to School/ Work
January was also the start of the new school year. Jozi gave us a blow by blow account of her experience: The Trauma of Our First Day Back at School.
I’m a lot stronger this time than I was the first time around last year. For one, I don’t dissolve into tears myself anymore when he cries not to be at school, because I’ve learnt a lot about this kiddo’s moods and resilience. Sometimes he has to do things that he doesn’t want to do, because I am his mother and duh, that puts me in charge. He will be just fine. And so will I.
Cindy copes with going back to work by staring at her holiday pics in Let’s Rewind the Clock By About Four Weeks. (You have to read her actual post how she starts the week all bright eyed and bushy tailed and by Thursday it’s like… Is it the weekend yet? I need another holiday.)
Jozi wrote how she is dealing with her working mother guilt by cramming in as much fun as she can into the remaining festive leave she has.
A pat on the back to us all, whatever our story.
Tanya writes a heartfelt post about Why I’ve Chosen to Go Back to Office Work Full Time.
I’m missing you, but I’m finding myself again. I hope that will make a difference to both our lives.
Chevonne says her piece about education in our country here: SA Education System: The Breeding Ground of Inequality.
To the matric class of 2015, DO NOT fall into the trap of mediocre achievement. The education department wants 30%, give them 60%; they wants 40%, give them 80%! Show them that you are capable of exceeding their very limited and minimal expectations! Do it for yourself and do it for the future of this country!
Melanie deals with the difficult topic of death in this post: When Will I Die?
Death is part of life, and I’m not going to freak out when Angie includes funerals in her games. I would rather have frequent, if difficult, conversations about death than none at all. At least I know she’s processing the information and trying to understand instead of bottling it up inside.
A lovely post about appreciating the moment from Di spending time with her son and their dog. Finding My Calm
Time slowed down. Nothing else mattered. Happy Nick. Happy dogs. Happy me.
Another one about This business of Being Happy from Laura.
We find the happy in the everyday, in the mundane, in the negative!
Cindy writes about her kids helping her in the kitchen: On Letting Go of the Need to Do It Myself. Just when she got to the point of letting go and letting them do their thing – they got bored and left their task. She concludes:
Parenting. Just when you think you have it waxed it slaps you in the face like puzzle piece being used as a dart.
Stacey writes about what she’s learnt as they use the respite care more and more: Three respite care visits and going strong!
And I’ve been selfish for trying to keep Travis under my wing for so long, forcing him to fit into a cookie-cutter suburban household. And equally as bad, for saddling his two younger brothers with this complicated situation.
Children learn what they see more than they learn what they are told. There is no better way for them to learn what a healthy relationship looks like than to see it every day. This doesn’t mean no fighting or no hard times, it means healthy communication and team work. It is not healthy for them to see you pushing your partners needs aside for theirs.
But nobody said what that failure would look like. What it would feel like. The ugly and messy side of parenting where one is forced to juggle ones own emotions as well as those of your kids.
I like the way she ended:
“Silly” is the best kind of medicine for us.
“Silly” dancing, like half drunken, lopsided-lets-hope-the-neighbors-don’t-see-us, crazy animals on the living room floor till we collapse in a puddle of laughter. Wading the unknown waters just a little bit more relaxed.
And if you feel like Leigh at any stage you need to read this post: Run away and leave it all behind. Not just to understand the desperation but to admire how she turned her attitude around.
I’ve asked myself so many questions over the last few days, trying to make sense of why Noah acted out for those two weeks and what I may have done to contribute to his behavior. You see I don’t think I took a step back and asked myself the critical questions. I was too busy asking him “WHY don’t you listen? WHATS wrong with you? WHERE do you learn to be so naughty? I should have been asking him HOW are you feeling? Why are you so angry and frustrated? What happened at school today? Or sometimes it is the very simple question “Do you need a hug?” All these questions would have helped me get a better idea of what he is going through. And it would have given me the tools to help him.
I had to laugh at Eleanor’s Oh Look there goes your sleep routine.
He has started all these stalling tactics when it comes to bed time, like putting his farm animals to sleep individually (I kid you not, blanket and pillow,the works) he sings along to lullabies and acts out bed time stories (wish I was making this shizz up) he tried to blow his play house down after the three little pigs, and re-enacts Goldilocks eating porridge oh and gets way too excited about colourful monsters.
Maz opens up about this disease in an incredible post (with some great quotes and illustrations too) about her personal history. My Life – Living With Bipolar Disorder – Growing up, pregnancy and motherhood.
Having Bipolar disorder is like being trapped in a web. It’s like being in pain, but it’s different to physical pain because you cannot separate yourself from it – it is like it is in your very being, your core…
I have just had my second baby five weeks ago and even though that black amorphous entity is a constant presence – I control it. I will not let it consume me, I will not let it rule me and I will not let it ruin my life. I have too much to live for, too much to lose. Never have I looked forward to the future as much as I do now. I never thought I had anything to look forward to. I am finally living in the present, and I think I have convinced myself that my fate is not sealed. That does not mean that I will never again have a depressive episode – I do believe, though, that I am better prepared for it and as time goes by I find that I am more confident with every passing year.
Jozi writes how she needs friends who are also parents in I’m recruiting BFFs with Babies
There is nothing quite like new parenthood to thrust you into a world of social seclusion. Some of it is self imposed, the rest pretty much happens naturally, because let’s face it. There are very few self-respecting, unshackled adults who really want to hang out with the freaks of nature now suddenly living their lives according to the naptime/ bathtime/ poop time of an often moody little person.
Elsa writes about her experiences on social media in Stop Cyberbullying.
There’s a saying form Wendy Mass “Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a battle you know nothing about.” It doesn’t matter how silly someones problem can be to you, to them it is real and relevant in their life. Just because your frame of reference leads you to think about something in a certain way doesn’t mean the other person’s thoughts are wrong, they are just different. Chances are you will get to a point later in life where you actually might think of the same issue in the same way. It all depends where life leads you. Be kind.
Chevonne writes about parenting her son in Most Days
Most days are better than others
Parenting, a whirlwind of emotions
My veins filled with love and devotion
Unconditional she is, the mom in me
She also writes another poem in Afrikaans, Sonskyn Kinders
Moeders van hierdie land
Hou nou hul hand
Koester hul saggies
Teen jou hart se kant
Bemin, bewaak en beskerm
Sonskyn kinders van ons land
Namreen writes Chasing Sunsets
And tomorrow, we begin the cycle anew.
Oblivious to the Sun’s familiar embrace
only chasing the last dance,
only chasing the sunset…
Di writes: Trapped by Time