Archive of ‘Parenthood’ category

Always and Forever Baby

As we count down the weeks to the arrival of our little girl I find myself getting more and more emotional as I try wrapping my brain around the idea of having two kids. The love I have for my little boy is so overwhelming that I can’t even imagine feeling that way about another little person. Is my heart even big enough?

Sure I am incredibly excited for this new chapter in our lives, for newborn kisses and cuddles. For sparkly shoes and bows in hair. But at the same time I feel like I’m also mourning the end of an era. Saying goodbye to the ‘just the two of us’ bubble I’ve been living in with my tiny dude for 4 years is proving far more difficult than expected. I find myself staring at him (more than usual) taking in every corner of his little face, the way his nose crinkle when he laughs, the sparkle in his eye when a car parks outside and he thinks its grandma, even the scary Dexter glare he does when he’s unhappy. I hug and kiss him a million times a day, I tell him I love him so often the poor kid is probably starting to wonder if I’m dying (that will explain him being clingy and the abandonment issues he’s been having)

He is beyond excited for his sister to arrive and every now and then he’ll look at my tummy and ask “baba coming out now?” I know he’ll be an amazing big brother. He is such a loving, gentle and caring little soul. But I also know his little world is about to be turned upside down, and all I want to do is make the transition as easy as possible. I never ever want him to think he has been replaced, that we don’t have time for him, that we don’t care as much as we use to. I want him to know that even though there’s a tiny baby in the house needing more of my attention, I’m still completely devoted to him.

But how? How do I make this massive change easy on him? How do I give all of me to a tiny helpless newborn while still being completely dedicated to my first born?

How did you handle the transition from one to two? Time to share your wisdom mama’s.

Hello Third Trimester. Wait, what!

30 weeks pregnant and it feels so surreal. I cannot believe how quickly this pregnancy has gone by. With Ben there was so much time to soak up all the pregnancy excitement, for reading baby books, obsessing over different nursery looks, maternity shoot and all that fun stuff. This time around I blinked and boom 3rd Trimester.

Looking back now I realize how naive we were when we decided to have a baby the first time around. We got pregnant our second month of trying and didn’t even realize how lucky we were. The whole pregnancy was perfect. No morning sickness, no heartburn, seriously I had minimum pregnancy symptoms. Except for not being able to sleep at night I never ever felt uncomfortable while pregnant.  I was active and very healthy.  Miscarriage and pregnancy complications never even entered my mind. It’s something that didn’t exist in my world. We just expected it to be smooth sailing

After Ben was born we took a serious financial hit, our marriage was put on the back burner as we focused all our energy on this tiny person. Life was just so different and even though I really wanted my kids close in age and longed to fall pregnant again, the time for a second baby was just never right. We waited and waited and waited. Then I found a really amazing job. Husband was doing well at work and finally we knew it was time.  Because I got pregnant quite quickly the first time I expected the same, but month 2 came and so did my period. Then month 3, and 4 and 5 and so it continued. I cried many times. I got angry at my husband because we waited too long and now I’m too old and it’s just not going to happen.

Then I got retrenched. It was an extremely difficult and uncertain time. 2 months later, after a year of trying I fell pregnant. I remember looking at the pregnancy test and instead of joy I felt like someone was squeezing all the air out of my lungs. How are we going to afford this baby?  I told husband and he was over the moon. Seeing him so excited calmed me down a little and soon enough I was pinning nurseries. But it was not meant to be.

For about a week after the miscarriage I completely shut down. I was in this bubble where only I existed. I just focused on getting out of bed and carrying on with my routine. Then one day I looked at Ben. My gorgeous, amazing little boy and I suddenly realized that if I only get him that will be enough. He is more than enough.

2 months later I found myself again clutching a positive pregnancy test. Because of the miscarriage I was hesitant to get excited. There was SO much anxiety for the first 12 weeks. What if it happens again? It was emotionally draining to think like this. We had a scare at 8 weeks but after some meds all was well again. But even after our 12 week appointment and a thumbs up from the doctor I still felt like saying it out loud would make it go away. And so we only told our parents at 14 weeks and then made it Facebook official at 17 weeks. I think the fact that we kept it quiet for so long is why this pregnancy feels so short. Why I sometimes feel like I missed out on all the “we’re pregnant” excitement.

But now I’m all in. I’m trying to make the most of every second. I’m asking the poor Instagram husband to snap a bump pic every opportunity I get. I’m milking the “treat me like a queen cause I’m growing a human” card and I’m knee deep in pink glitter and tutu’s.

So how does this second pregnancy differ from my first? Oh my gosh let me count the ways.

So much nausea for the first 12 weeks and then again from 20 weeks till about 25 weeks.  Because of swelling I had to take my wedding band off months ago. My back is killing me and getting out of bed or off the couch very much resembles a tortoise trying to flip himself back after landing on his shell.  My skin was basically the Sahara desert for Trimester 1 and 2 and after using copious amounts of skin hydrating oil its just now getting back to its former glory. I’ve always had restless leg issues so I’m use to it but still it’s definitely worst now and some nights I really struggle to get comfy. Also as someone who lives for summer I quickly realized that sunny days are a lot less fun when pregnant. I’m ALWAYS sweaty and red faced and it’s such a mission to get anything done when the heat is constantly draining all your energy.  But I’m not complaining, far from it. I absolutely adore being pregnant and love this bump. It’s actually a little bittersweet knowing its coming to an end and that the pregnancy phase of my life will then be over.

But I’m also excited (and petrified) to start the next phase of life as a mom of two.

10 weeks left guys! 10 WEEKS!

The Ramblings of a sad girl cliche

Remember when we were all like 2016 is the worst year ever and then 2017’s like “Hold my beer”

Retrenchment in February, a few hospital pit stops, a miscarriage after Easter weekend and then Thursday the 11th of May… Voldemort day.

I once read an article that said 1 in 4 pregnancies end in miscarriage. I think this is why I had such a hard time feeling sad. This happens to 1 in 4 pregnant women, I’m not special; I’m not even the worst case scenario. I was only 5 weeks pregnant. It barely counts as a pregnancy.  I don’t deserve to cry because there are women all over the world who had to deal with far worst.  But through reading and talking to friends I’ve come to realise that it doesn’t matter how far along you were, you don’t have to submit your tragedy to a panel who will judge if you qualify to feel sad, you can just be sad. It’s my party and I’ll cry if I want to.

I’ve since spent my fair share of time on the couch feeling sorry for myself. I’ve stuffed my face with comfort food, I’ve cried at diaper ads and I’ve watched way too much Keeping up with the Kardashians. I can actually feel my brain cells dying.  I’m the walking talking sad girl cliché.

Thing is when you are a mom you are only allowed to have a breakdown from 8 – till end of school day, and then you wipe the tears and get shit done.  I love my little boy so much and I know if it wasn’t for him I’d probably be having a gin with my morning coffee. He makes me so incredibly happy, except for the times when he cries for 30 minutes because I won’t give him a green fizzer, or when he has to take a bath, brush his teeth or go to bed…  But still I absolutely adore this age. His imagination, the way he experience things, the little hugs and I love you’s. He’s a proper little person.

Husband and I recently came to the realisation that we’ve been more roommate than partners the last year. Somewhere between a baby, new jobs, money worries and losing a baby we’ve forgotten the things that use to make us great together. Our biggest problem is communication. I tend to bottle up. I am your typical cowboys don’t cry. But husband is a don’t go to bed angry, let’s talk it out kinda person. See where things went wrong.  We recently went on a weekend away to the west coast just the two of us and it did us the world of good. It’s important to remember marriage is a team sport. You don’t have to suffer in silence when there’s someone right there eager to hand you a tissue.

It’s weird living life somewhere between anger, heartbreak and disbelieve. But I do think that we are heading towards the silver lining. They say bad things happen in three’s so I’m done. Right?

I found a quote the other day that said “Sometimes it takes and overwhelming breakdown to have an undeniable breakthrough” I use to roll my eyes at people who post quotes on Social Media. Now I pin quotes on Pinterest till midnight.  It’s actually quite therapeutic. I get why people do it. I currently find myself in the middle of  “The mind replays what the heart can’t delete” and “When life knocks you down stand the fuck up and say you hit like bitch”

Rocking Motherhood

You’ve probably seen the #RockingMotherhood posts around and I’ve been tagged by Cassey from Bits and Pieces, Zayaan from Surviving the Madness and Maz from Caffeine and Fairydust to write about the 10 Ways I’m Rocking Motherhood. I ignored the first two tags because 10 WAYS? LIKE HOW EVEN? But then after the third tag I was like okay time to buckle down and get it done.

I’m not going to list 10 ways I’ll rather just tell you a little story.

When Ben arrived I was petrified. Husband changed the first few diapers because I was so scared I’d get it wrong. It took me a while to get comfortable, and to embrace motherhood. But when it clicked, it clicked. The moment I got over the fear and doubt and embraced motherhood fully I kicked ass. For the first time in my life I was a 100% proud of something I did. I wasn’t just coasting. I was passionate, involved and fierce.
But then last year I hit a speed bump. We were getting reports from school that Ben refused to take part in class activities and that there were a few fights with friends. The school assured us that we didn’t need to worry, kids go through phases and they were handling it. But then I got the email, the principle wanted to see us. We were told that Ben was hyperactive, did not participate in class activities, difficult to reason with, frustrated and would sometimes become aggressive with friends and teachers. We were shown video footage of the class. The kids would all be sitting at tables colouring in and Ben would be on the play carpet area running back and forth. When it was story time all the kids would be sitting in the reading corner and Ben would be sitting next to the teacher because he was too much of a distraction when he was sitting with the kids. It was sad to hear and heartbreaking to see.
The death blow was when we were told that some of the kids in the class have told the teacher that they don’t want to play with Ben anymore. My heart shattered into a million pieces. I was so emotional I couldn’t even talk. Not only was I incredibly worried about my little boy who is usually sweet and loving, but also heartbroken on his behalf because for how long has he been misunderstood and alone and I didn’t know. I also felt like my mothering was being attacked. Am I a bad mom. I went over every single parenting decision I have ever made. I was disappointed in Ben because why is he being a bully. And I was even more disappointed in me because what did I do wrong.

There was so much tension in our house and at school and I could see it was taking a toll on Ben. We had to sort this out as soon as possible. First step was to see the pediatrician and then a play therapist. To cut a long story short after a long chat with the pediatrician and a full check up he put him on an iron supplement and it has made such a huge difference. I now hear him singing songs from school around the house, something he never did before because he never paid attention in class when they were learning songs. I cannot tell you how happy this made me.
Ben bounced back quickly. But it took me a little longer to get my confidence back. I still sometimes stress that I’m failing, that I’m not a good enough mom.

But I now know that Rocking motherhood means:

  • Knowing that sometimes it’s okay not to be okay.
  • Knowing there’s no such thing as a perfect mom.
  • That at some point you will be disappointed by your little angel child, whether it be bullying, lying, smuggling booze into a party or taking your car for a joy ride. Deal with it.

Most of all I rock motherhood because even though I kill all my houseplants at an alarming rate I manage to keep my tiny person happy and healthy.

The Rocking Motherhood Tag Rules:
1. Thank the blogger that tagged you and link to their blog. (Been there done that)
2. List 10 things you believe make you a good mother (this is just a guideline. It can be more or less than 10.
3. Tag 3 – 5 bloggers to join in the #RockingMotherhood Tag.
4. Grab the #RockingMotherhgood badge and add it to your post or sidebar.

Okay so I did some of that.

I’m tagging:

Cass from Leather Jacket Foxes because you rock at all aspects of life 🙂

The worst part of parenthood

The worst part of parenthood. No its not the lack of sleep, missing out on after work drinks with friends or hearing a tiny person call “MOOOOOMMMMMM!!!!” a thousand times a day. Its the constant fear and anxiety you carry around everyday.

Being a parent is like being Ben Stiller in the movie Along came Polly. Before any car ride, activity and outing you first slot it into your little risk calculater to see what could be the worst possible outcome. A scraped knee? Cool I’ll risk it. Cracked skull? Nope, nope, nope!

On the 31 December, the very last day of the much hated 2016 Ben had an accident. He was jumping from one chair to the next when he fell. He couldn’t break his fall with his hands and hit the side of the chair chin first, his neck bending back at a weird angle and then he tumbled to the ground. I though he hit his mouth and expected loose teeth and a cut lip but when I got him up off the floor his mouth was fine, there was no blood. I was relieved. Ben was crying hysterically and it was then that I noticed he was holding his chin with both hands. As I pulled them away they were covered in blood. Parental Meltdown.

We immediately rushed to the ER. When we arrived a very nice nurse checked his vitals, cleaned his face, and told us its going to be a bit of a wait for the doctor. Ben seemed to be calming down and doing better. He wanted hugs and cuddles. The next moment it was like someone flipped a switch. His face went white, mouth hanging open and his eyes were glassy. We tried to talk to him but he was being unresponsive. At the time I was still relatively calm and thought it was just shock.  The nurse checked his vitals and tried to get a response from him. She tried her best to sound calm as she asked someone to get the doctor but there was a definite hint of tension. A few minutes later she shined the little light in his eyes again. She told us to keep talking to him, to ask him questions . Again she called for the doctor this time sounding even more anxious. I looked at my little boys pale face and thought, is he going to die now, right here, in front of me…

The doctor finally arrived. He checked Ben, cleaned his chin and glued the gash together. He then ordered a MRI scan and wanted Ben booked into the hospital for observation. 40 minutes later Ben was jumping on the hospital bed and making grandma draw dinosaurs on old till slips she found in her handbag. The scans were all fine and we got to go home.

We hear these awful, terrifying stories. The 3 year old boy who drowned in his parents pool a few days after Christmas. The Grade R boy who fell from the jungle gym at school and died. How can we not be paranoid.

But kids will always explore, climb, jump, push boundaries. Its how they learn. There will be falls, there will be ouchies. We cant helicopter parent them every moment and we shouldnt treat them like bubble boy. All we can do is hope and pray. Be present. Be aware. Kiss them a million times everyday even when they don’t want to. Love in abundance. BE THANKFUL. And have faith.

How to shop with a toddler

First of all lets get one thing straight. Unless you thrive in highly tense, volatile situations rather leave the shopping for when your husband is home to watch the kids. OR even better, take him with. Let him experience the utter terror of shopping with a toddler first hand and then next time he asks you why you are exhausted after grocery shopping (men have real short memories) you get to punch him in the face.

ben-shopping

When shopping with a toddler ALWAYS pick the store you know best. You should be able to name the number of the aisle of every single item on your list before you even leave the house.

Entertainment is key. Pack the tablet, the mini DVD player, books, anything else that might keep them busy for more than 15 minutes.

Unless you have R5 with you AVOID the entrance with the car or plane ride. Actually even if you have R5 on you AVOID AVOID AVOID. Because one ride is never enough. Once you’ve popped you cant stop.

Blind fold, distract whatever you need to do to get pass the toy aisle.

Keep them snacking. Even if that means breaking the sugar before lunch rule. And don’t worry about the sugar high, if you are quick about shopping the sugar will probably only kick in once your home and there’s no one to eye role at your screaming kid.

Make high speed car chase noises as you take a corner of an aisles at a 100km/ph. Even better if you make crashing or exploding noises as you pass other trolleys.

Pick the shortest line at the till, hastily throw the items in the direction of the check out lady, wipe the sweat from your upper lip while drummer your fingers on the counter.

Unpack your trolley, stuff your Flings faced toddler in the car and high five yourself on being a super mom.

Get home and realise that while you checked your shopping list your toddler loaded about half the shops Oreo stock into your trolley.

Explore your online shopping options.

 

Let them be little

After University I spent a year teaching English in Taiwan. It was a private English school and classes were from 17:00 – 21:00. These kids came to English classes after spending most of their day at school and other extra murals. I even had a class of 2 -3 year olds. They could barely speak Mandarin but they were there to learn English. They basically just ate Oreo’s and cried the whole time. After classes I’d usually walk over to the night market for dinner and the parks would be filled with teenagers playing basket ball or huddled in groups chatting because this was basically the only down time they had, at night, just before bed time.

Now for them this is normal, but for me it was not. I just wanted to scream “let them be little” while shoving an overtired 2 year old English ‘learner’ out the door.

Even though South Africans are more laid back when it comes to raising our kids and very much value playtime, I have definitely noticed a bit of a shift.  Parents are becoming more competitive, pushing their kids towards milestones long before they are ready. Even I fell into this trap at first.

Instead of enjoying my little one I was counting milestones and comparing him to other kids. We all know kids develop at their own pace; they have their own personalities and talents and strong points, so why are we choosing to ignore this? Why are we rushing off to therapists and specialist before giving our little one the time they deserve to figure it out on their own?

In March I was telling my husband about how basically all Ben’s classmates walked from the car to class on their own carrying their little backpack, but Ben still clung to me like a monkey wanting me to carry him. Should we be worried, is this an issue? I talked to another mom and she said she just one day flat out refused to carry her little one in. There were a few tears but now he’s happy to walk on his own. I’m a bit of a push over and always try avoid tears, so I decided to give it more time.  Two weeks later he got out of the car, asked for his bag and walked all the way to class on his own. I was the proudest mom at school that day, and Ben looked pretty chuffed himself.

Off course there are limits to this. We don’t want 5 year olds in diapers only being able to count to 5 but do we really need 1 year olds that can count to 10. Do we really need to drill the alphabet into a 2 year old when all they want to do is climb a tree and ride their push bike? We are so focused on turning our toddlers into little stepford kids with all their fancy educational toys that we forget about the good old blanket fort and cardboard box turned racecar. When last have you met a little kid with an imaginary friend? We need more little one’s wearing a snorkelling mask to the shops or running around in a super hero outfit and less 2 year olds going on 20.

Jonas Harrysson a school teacher recently posted the following on Facebook “I’ve met many parents who are soooo proud that their kids can read and count before starting preschool. Well, I hate to break it to you, but reading and counting, they’ll learn to do soon enough. Teach them instead to play, to be a good friend, and to share” Amen to that.

March: The highs and lows.

My mom use to tell me that the older you get the faster time goes and obviously as a kid I didn’t believe a word she said. Oh mom how right you were. It feels like I packed away the Christmas tree just yesterday and already we are done with Easter.

March went by so quickly that it actually took me a few minutes to remember what happened.

Low:  Bilateral Grommets & Adenoidectomy

We’ve been discussing grommets for quite a while now. I was very hesitant at first. It felt like every kid and his cousin was suddenly getting the Op, I wanted to make sure it was really necessary, but after a year of every snot nose and cough eventually turning into an ear infection needing antibiotics I knew we had to see a specialist. Ben is also a little behind when it comes to talking and we were worried that the constant ear infections might have a part in this.

On 9 March at 7 am we booked into the Cure Day Clinic Somerset West. Now in the medical world Grommets is a ‘no brainer surgery’ Millions of kids get them everyday. For me though it felt like he was going in for open heart surgery. I was so stressed and nervous.  A pretty big hurdle was the fact that Ben was not allowed to eat or drink after 2 am. Food is fine but my little boy is pretty adamant when it comes to his morning bottle so I was very worried about him having a major meltdown before we’ve even started the day. Luckily he woke up just before we had to leave so I quickly changed his diaper, gave him a little good luck present as a distraction and bundled him into the car.

ben 1

Everyone kept warning me that seeing your kid fall asleep, so lifeless when getting anesthesia is really horrible so I was prepared for the worst. So how it works is you go into theatre with your little, hold them on your lap tight while the Anesthesiologist holds the mask over their mouth. They squarm and wriggle and cry and then their tiny body goes completely limp. The crying is actually a good thing since they take deeper breaths and fall asleep quicker. Luckily Ben’s eye’s didn’t roll back as so many moms warned me would happen, instead he closed them and just fell asleep. The part that did actually frighten me was when they removed his mask and he made a horrible sound as if suffocating. My heart went cold, but the doctor reassured me that its normal, so take note.

The op takes about 45 minutes so its really quick. Another thing I was warned about is how they freak out when they wake up from the anesthesia. They can be disorientated, confused and even aggressive. My one friend told me her little one wanted nothing to do with her when he woke up, screamed blue murder and eventually passed out under the bed. I was scared, very scared. Luckily I had my mom with me. I thought Ben would be asleep when he came out of theatre, but we could hear him cry all the way in the waiting room as he woke up and they started wheeling him out. I got such a fright when I saw him. He was looking very confused and scared and had a bloody nose (apparently this is from the tube’s and completely normal) Back in his room I climbed in bed with him and he started to calm down and eventually fell asleep. He slept for what felt like ages. Woke up a little groggy, wanted to get out of bed, moaned a little and then took grandma’s hand and wanted to explore the hospital. He was walking up and down the hall in his little blue gown chatting away. Doctor took one look at him and said its fine to go home.

ben 2

ben 3

So all in all a stressful day but not as bad as I thought it would be. Little dude was such a champ.

ben 5

High:  Easter in The Baths Citrusdal

We had a family wedding in Citrusdal over easter weekend and stayed in The Baths. Our house was just outside the main gate, 4 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, 2 kitchens so perfect for a large group. The house has an outside bath and a Jacuzzi that fills with water from the hot springs up in the mountain. We pretty much spent all our time in that Jacuzzi. Ben played in there till his fingers and toes were totally pruned, we had to bribe him with chocolate to get out at night.

the baths

the baths 4

the baths 5

The resort also has a restaurant, a hot pool, cold pool and rock pools. This is such a cool place for a family vacation.

The Saturday was the wedding. Unfortunately it was cold and rainy, not ideal for a farm wedding. Ben had such a ball running up and down the dance floor and even made some friends. At around 10pm my parents took Ben home and we stayed behind to party with my 20 year old cousins. There were dancing and shots and pretending to be party animals but at around midnight I was feeling my age and ready to hit my bed. In good old parent-life fashion Ben woke up crying hysterically just as I was about to get in bed. He spent the rest of the night in our bed kicking me in the face and hitting his head against the headboard. Lucky mom woke up with a hangover and a sore neck.

When your toddler says no to books

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Ben has always been a real active kid. Since he took his first step at just 9 months there has been climbing, jumping, running, motorbike rides, trampoline jumping and the list goes on. Reading on the other hand has never been high on the list of daily activities. He was far more interested in the physical aspect of books. First it was chewing books or ripping pages, then building a book tower and jumping from it or seeing how far he could throw them. When he actually did sit down for story time he would insist on turning the pages long before I’ve even finished a sentence.

I think this lack of book love is partly my fault. We just never incorporated a specific reading time into his daily routine. When he was 3 months old I noticed moms on Twitter talking about reading to their babies. Serious FOMO kicked in and I tried it for a bit but he was just so tiny and uninterested that I decided he is still too young. Then as he got a little older I tried books again but it was just so frustrating to try and get him to sit still and listen to a story that it just raised my heart rate and made me shouty mom.

Now we have reached the point where literally every kid on my timeline belongs to the monthly book club and my kid still has a 2 second attention span when it comes to books. I’m just so stressed that the lack of reading will make him fall behind. He’s already a bit of a hesitant talker so its definitely a touchy subject.

So I’ve been doing a bit of reading on kids who resist books and am relieved to hear I am not alone in this. There are plenty of toddlers who would rather spend 10 minutes trying to throw the book at the ceiling fan rather than sitting down for story time.

Things I’ve picked up from my ‘research’:

  • It’s important to nurture an early love for books (oops) Even if they just get use to holding a book and turning the pages. (now they tell me)
  • Choose bright and colourfull pages and start by just getting them interested in the illustrations – The only book Ben actually does like is “The hungry Caterpillar” so this makes a lot of sense.
  • Read infront of them. Kids usually copy their parents, so if they see you read they will want to follow. – I usually wait till Ben is asleep to read, because who sits and read infront of their kids, but actually it makes so much sense.
  • Create a special little reading corner that your kids love. Make a big fuss about it.
  • Buy books about their favourite TV show or characters, but don’t make the mistake I did. I bought him a ‘CARS’ book that includes tiny little Mater, Mqceen etc cars. He ended up throwing the book to the side and playing with the cars.
  • If your kid refuse to sit still for reading time try keep their hands busy with playdough or colouring in to force them to sit still. I’m currently reading to Ben during bath time when he is relaxed and playing with his boats and it is definitely working.
  • Also rather than forcing your kid to sit still and read, try make the book come to life. When the monkey in the book is dancing put down the book and dance with our kiddy. If the book is about fruit, ask your little to go get an apple from the kitchen and show it to you.
  • Keep on trying. – I now ask Ben regularly if he would like to read a book. Sometimes he says yes and (often) no. If he says no I don’t force it but when he says yes I make a big deal about it and he gets very excited. Also where I use to get stressed out and angry when he jumps up after one page I now see it as a triumph. We read a whole page, yay, high fives, and so in me being more relaxed about it I find him asking for books more often.

The golden rule is always to “Let them find it in their own time”

Back to school problems

Monday is back to school for Ben and I’m so anxious my head might just explode. Sure this isn’t our first time like some of my other mom friends, but Ben will now be in the 2 -3 year old class with a new teacher and a whole new list of ”what to bring to school” requirements. Also only working parents will understand the madness and chaos that happens between 6am – 8am every morning trying to get you and the toddler dressed and out the door in time. I am not looking forward to that at all.

So problem number one on the list is an Art Apron. Sounds easy enough right. Nope! I spent the day driving from store to store without success, sure I did leave this till the very last, but still who would have though an art apron would turn out to be such a unicorn. First place I tried was Mambo’s. They had 2 kinds and I really liked the one but it was made of a really think PVC material and I don’t even want to imagine what it must feel like wearing that during a 39 degree heatwave. The other option was a thinner material but had string around the neck and back and knowing Ben he will never tolerate that string around his neck. It was also and awful bright construction worker bib yellow. Clicks had no idea what I was talking about and Crazy Store’s was so big it would probably be a loose fit for a 4 year old. Toys R Us had a really nice one but also for 3 years and up and at R200 it was a ridiculous option. Is the universal perception that only kids of 3 years and older paint?  So tail between my legs I went back to Mambo’s for the ugly yellow. It will have to do till I can find a better option.

Problem number two on the list is the schools new ‘No hat, no outside play’ rule. A very very good rule to have unless you have a kid who feels about hats the way I feel about Uma Thurman’s acting. Totally hate it.  Since birth he could not stand having anything on his head. I have a bunch of cute knitted owl hats and beanies with ears that was never worn for more than 5 minutes. The only hat he will wear is my Panama hat and only to be funny. Once the joke is over so is the hat. So I’m sending him to school on Monday with a brand new Cotton On hat, how they’ll keep it on his hat is the new teachers problem.

And that brings me to the biggest problem of all. The new teacher. You see Ben adores his previous teacher and even though teachers aren’t suppose to have favourites Ben was definitely Snowy’s favourite. She scratched his back while he drank his bottle at nap time, she often sneaked him an extra cookie and he was permanently glued to her side. When he had an off day and cried in the morning he would immediately stop as soon as she picked him up. She is also the only person who can successfully get him to take antibiotics. I never ever worried about him while at school because I knew he was in loving caring hands. I’m sure the new teacher is lovely and will take good care of him but I just know to Ben she’ll never be Snowy. So yes I expect tears on Monday and I definitely expect to hear that he tried to escape to his old classroom a few times. I spoke to Snowy about this and she said its quite normal for them to walk back to their old classroom but she always walk them right back and eventually they will stop and accept their new normal. I just don’t want Ben to think he has been abandoned by someone he loves, that Snowy no longer wants to spent time with him. I’m probably over thinking this but my poor mom heart is just so sad for my little boy. I’m hoping he’ll prove me wrong and be all cool with the change. You never know with these tiny people.

So good luck to all the moms dropping a tiny one off at school this week. May we all make it to the car before we start to cry.

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