Lessons Learned after Having a Caregiver

We’ve had Nana with us since the boys were six weeks old and she’s played such a huge part in raising M & B.  In the last five or so years, we’ve been blessed (cliché I know, but it’s true) to have her as part of our family.  What started off as part time, quickly became full time caregiving.  Nana’s a talented and loving woman who not only took care of the boys, but took care of hubby and I too.

Here is what I’ve learned over the years:

She’s Taken Care of Me – if someone’s going to see you at your most vulnerable (other than your partner/husband), it’s your nanny.  As mentioned previously, Nana started with us early into my maternity leave so we were together all the time.  I nursed and pumped and I used to be conservative and pumped privately or had a towel cover on.  But I remember I was on the brink of filling up a bottle pumping and didn’t have another on hand.  The boys were by my side and she came in with a bottle, took my milk and was gone.  I also remember days where the boys were napping in the car and we’d be driving around getting errands done and we’d be chatting about life, her family and motherhood.

I Am Their Mother – were there times where the boys preferred to be with Nana over me?  Yes.  Were there times where I was hurt by this?  Hell … Yes!  But, when they’re with Nana all day .. every day, it was inevitable.  It didn’t bother me too much because my boys are quite affectionate and vocal about their love for their mama.  But those days when I came home from a bad day at work and all I wanted to do was make it all go away by cuddling up with my boys and they didn’t reciprocate.  I may or may not have cried in the bathroom on one or two occasions. But on the serious tip, I will always be their mother  and that doesn’t change anything.

You Won’t Always See Eye to Eye – and that’s okay.  I came into motherhood with zero experience.  Nana’s had years of experience, years of patience and she brought that added touch to the family.  Also, I’ve come to realize that my mothering style is different, especially when it comes to discipline.  I would say that my hubby and Nana were similar in forms of disciplining, meanwhile I go from zero to one hundred and once you’ve crossed the line, there is no turning back.  A less intense approach is probably the way to go, but intense works with me.

Having someone care for your kids and live in your house is not for everyone.  When we found out we were having twins, we knew that we’d be getting a nanny but we just didn’t know what that would look like or what it meant.  Nana came into our world because the stars aligned and when they say it takes a village to raise children, she was the village.

Nana

 

 

Thanksgiving 2019 – Why I’m Thankful

Happy Canadian Thanksgiving!  I’ve been reflecting the last few weeks because so much has happened in 2019 and I have so much to be thankful for this year … more so than in other years.  First and foremost, I am thankful for my family and friends.  My husband and my boys are everything and they just get me.  My family and friends (my village) help in raising my kids and help provide support.

Then there is my health that I’m thankful for and it was a bit of a scare for me earlier this year.  March 7th to be exact where I was on my way to work and I had an anxiety attack just before getting on the highway.  Luckily, I pulled over and found my way back home.

I had been working my job and covering vacation for a colleague and I was at the tail end of a three week coverage during peak season.  I even had someone support a program that I was running.

But I was upset with myself that day, because the year before I had worked the same three week coverage and did everything myself.  I worked ridiculous hours.  Later in the year I covered vacation again, on top of my job and was also involved in providing support to a rollout of a project.

So, why did I break this time?  I had everything in place at home with a great support system and even with blogging, I had outsourced pieces of work and even said no if I couldn’t commit.

I realized that the body and mind can only take so much and it was that morning on March 7th, that I shut down.  It took me just under 3 weeks to be able to get back on that highway … prior to that I had to take sideroads.  I was in a bad place mentally, socially and I felt let down.  And it took me a month to become myself again.

And when things got back to being me, I had to make changes.  I had to make myself a priority and not rely on false promises because I knew my worth and capabilities.  I started listening to podcasts that inspired, started writing out my thoughts, woke up every day feeling grateful and stopped sweating the small stuff.

So this Thanksgiving 2019, I am thankful for my family and friends and I am extremely thankful for my health.

Can’t end this without sharing some links to some fav podcasts. Just click and listen.

Beyond Burnout

Happier with Gretchin Rubin

Shine: Calm, Anxiety & Stress

XOXO

Sunshine

 

 

 

 

Stay at Home Mom, Working Mom, Mom-to-Be … Just Support One Another

I didn’t have the courage to post this on my Instagram Page and I almost deleted it completely.  However, I feel safe putting it here, I don’t get a lot of visitors to my blog and maybe it will resonate with a reader.

So here it goes …

In 2015, I made the decision to stay home with my twin boys. questions like “are you sure that’s the right thing to do?” or comments like, “that’s not really putting your degree to use”

In 2017, I made the decision to re-enter the workforce full time … questions like “are you sure that’s what you want to go back into?” or comments like “oh wow, the kids are still young and the first 4 to 5 years are so important”

Last week, I resigned for an opportunity outside the industry where I spent 10+ years of my career in and questions like, “are you sure that’s the right move?” or comments like “your kids are so young to make a move” came up.

Just wow … there were so many well wishes in all three scenarios above, but all I remembered and harped on were the comments that were not so positive and what blows my mind … the comments were from women WITH kids.

Today (2019) stats show that there is still a wage gap between men and women (a bigger gap for women of colour) … stay at home moms are not given the recognition for managing a household and working moms are still going home and taking on the larger share of household duties.

We all have reasons for the paths we choose with or without kids, and everyone questions themselves, they write a pros and cons list and they lean on others for advice.  No decision is made overnight, but whatever path a woman chooses, we should be supportive of it.

So the next time you come across a post or hear news of a woman’s doubt, success or struggle … lift them up … don’t pull them down.

cafe