Monday, 3 January 2011

Hello 2011, bye bye 2010! On the struggles of being a parent and enlightenment.

Goshy, it's the 3rd of January 2011 already and I haven't even done a blog post yet. I normally do one on the last day of the year, but didn't get a chance.

Let's do it now.

Well hello there 2011, pardon me for congratulating you late on your birth and mourning the death of 2010. It had sort of a ring to it, 2010, but it was a hectic year for me, for us, with quite a lot of ups and downs.

2010 was major for Dylbee as he learned to crawl, grow teethies, sign, babble and walk in 2010. All huge accomplishments one might say for a little 1 and a bit year old. 2010 was also major for me and Andy but in different ways. We really struggled with our new roles as parents and everything that came with that. The joyous and amazing moments, but also the moments where you deal with having many less freedoms, and old strategies that used to meet your needs were no longer available. These changes have been painful and trying. We are continually challenged to be zen masters and have no attachments to 'how we want things'. It is not about 'us' anymore. It's about him now.

A little person arrives in your life and then proceeds to dominate it, take over and make you his humble slave. (Ha ha, ok, that's an exaggeration but does come close to it). It was only this morning when I uttered under my breath to Andy when we were trying to put Dylan's shoes on; 'my God, it really is a 5 man job eh'? Something as simple as putting his shoes on can be a major drama.

I look forward to the day where Dylan can understand the impact some of his actions have, not so that he can feel guilty and 'bad about himself, of course not, but so that we can 'work together on getting everyone's needs met, not just his'. At this point, Andy described it nicely yesterday, he is 16.5 months old and is a 'need-meeting-machine'. He has all the same 'rights' that other people have, but none of the responsibilities or the capacity to empathise.

Don't get me wrong, I love the little critter to death, he has so many adorable and beautiful sides to him, but it's also so hard to be with him sometimes. He endlessly wants to breastfeed (yep, still breastfeeding) and scratches me in the process (sometimes bites me by accident) and always wants what we have (so if I'm drinking tea, he wants to hold the cup etc) which means you don't ever really get a break unless you leave the room which then makes him cry hysterically.

I feel torn when I read what I just wrote because I am utterly and deeply grateful for having him in my life, I don't want to seem like I am not happy to have him, but I also want to express how difficult it can be. I was in tears last night talking to Andy (for whom it's also not easy by any stretch of the imagination). I feel frustrated when I think that the only way you can have some harmony and peace with a 16.5 year old is by being domineering, authoritarian and horrible because they are incapable of any real understanding or empathy yet. I don't want to be the 'nazi parent', but I also want some peace and quiet and harmony with my child. I don't want him to drive us crazy. We can't really communicate with him about 'what it's like for us yet', so we just have to either 'grin and bear' or 'shout and dominate'. (Ok, we have some in between solutions too, like distraction etc, but they are not as effective as I'd like).

Ok, I'm painting a picture here that is a little bleak and it's not that bad. I suppose I'm writing this after 2 weeks of no break of Dylbee and he's been really grumpy and demanding for the last 3-4 days as well so that hasn't helped. There have been lovely days as well where he's just pottering while we're all together and we've been able to just sit calmly together, but for the last couple of days things have just seemed a lot harder.

So, here I am trying to talk about 2010 and 2011 and write mostly about Dylbee -> see!! It's all about HIM! ;)

Tam & Dylbee

Ha ha. The challenges when you become a parent eh. Gosh.

For 2011 - the aim for me and Andy are:

* spend more time together
* spend more time with friends (we've been pretty isolated)
* do more art (for me)
* play more golf (for Andy)

And, after all that I just wrote about Dylan, we are STILL considering and thinking about a second child. LOL. I know, crazy right?

Both of us are weary of the idea of a second, but it also seems to make sense. We'd like for Dylan to have a sibling, they also say that at some point they 'entertain each other', it's helpful for socialisation and it's nice to have a second child (yeah, right ... ;)). Also, everything changes when they get older. But, we need to make sure we're ok financially, which is tricky, we need to make sure we're ok emotionally, which is tricky (hee hee), and the other thing is: if we do want to do it, we need to do it soon as I can't stay on steroids for many more years (max 3). (I'm on steroids instead of my other meds for the RA because of pregnancy and breastfeeding). To those who have more than 1 child, are you happy you chose for a second? Or do you think sticking with 1 would've been easier? Grateful for any input on this one. :)

The problem with a second child as well is if we do IVF again (Dylan is an IVF baby), it means I'll have to wean him off the breast which will be a total drama as he's totally obsessed with it. So I'm not looking forward to that one!

So, decisions to be made and as Andy says: sitting in the fire once more.

It's so hard because I really waver between yes and no. On some days I think to myelf: NEVER again another one! And on other days I'm totally in the mindset of: aww it'd be SO lovely to get another. It's a really difficult decision to make, and we can't 'leave it up to chance' in our situation either.

Anyhoo, in 2011 - art wise, I'm very excited about my current course which starts on 17th January (Magical Mythical Makings - sign up here) and also, I'm really excited about creating a digital art online course! There is a lot of possibilities with this one, so uber excited. I started doing digital portraits of toddlers, this one is of my neighbour's daughter Ciara, I ordered it on canvas and it looks great! :)


I'm loving working digitally - and I know I have a lot to teach on this one so it's going to be great!

Let's see what 2011 brings for us, I hope it's going to be great for everyone, and if not so great that we grow from the 'not-so-greatness'. There is a video in which Eckhart Tolle talks about how people can get very upset when their loved ones are in pain or are going through struggles and he says: 'but to wish no pain or struggle upon anyone is possibly the worst thing you could wish for them, as from pain comes learning, growth and sometimes enlightenment'. So, I hereby wish you all a painful and struggle-ful 2011! ;) And I raise my glass to 'enlightenment'! ;) (Kiddddding!! - though I do wish we grow and learn from our pain and struggles should we be experiencing them). Mostly I wish you a muffin filled 2011. (What is it with me and muffins? ;)). oxoxo



  1. As in all things....This too will pass.....Much light and love to you and your family in the New Year:)

  2. Oh goodness Tam, you have a lot going on!! I can't give you any advice & wouldn't presume to. I'm not a parent & I'm in awe of anyone who is. I was an only child until the age of 7 when two siblings arrived in quick succession. Until a few years ago, my mother told me that I had begged for a brother or sister. It turns out it was my parents who decided I should have a sibling. I was perfectly happy as an only child.

    A friend has two children, 5 & 3 and she struggles constantly to cope with all that entails & frankly, I don't know how she does it. Their constant demands for her attention are exhausting to watch & listen to.

    I know I'm biased, I have never wanted children & there will be so many who will tell you how marvellous it is to have a dozen or so :), but your health issues have to be a major concern.

    Would a second round of IVF, then another pregnancy if the IVF is successful, have a detrimental affect on you? Can you divide the same amount of energy between two children, especially when the oldest one is going to be racing around in a very short while?

    Wouldn't it be nice if we could wave a magic wand & make everything simple? You are an amazing woman & whatever decisions you make, I wish you a fantastic 2011 & feel free to tell me to mind my own business. Huge hugs to you.

  3. First of all want to wish you a fabulous 2011, with all the ups and downs life has to offer ;-) Reading your story really touched me, it IS hard to be a parent. Wonderful too, yes, but also hard and you shouldn't feel guilty about writing these things down. It does not mean you don't love your little one ! We had our second child, because we thought it would be fun for our first daughter. You know, someone to play and have fun with .... Don't count on that, mine are now 15 and 18 and finally starting to like eachother..... We love them both so much, but they are such two different girls, and honestly, they didn't play much together LOL Most of the time they just had fights ;-) Tough decisions for you to make, but since you have so much love to share, I think you will be oke with two children as well ;-)

  4. G'day Tam,
    I have 3 children. My daughter, Louise, is 7 in March, Jack was 5 last September and James is 4 on Thursday. When James was born I had 3 kids under 3. That year was the most tiring year to date. There is 17months between my older two and 16months between the last two. It seems like yesterday that I gave birth to Louise. We were going to have another one but my husband is 10 years older than I am and we had to work out how many dependent children we would have when he was expected to retire. Saying that though, if we fell pregnant again tomorrow (apart from being shocked) we'd be happy. After all, family is everything.
    When the kids are little, like Dylan, they demand a lot of your time and 'Me time' goes out the door. However, I have found that as they get older things become easier.
    I do believe the best gift you can give your child is a sibling. Having siblings means that an only child is not wanting to be with you ALL the time. They really do entertain each other.
    Do you have any siblings? Think back how it was to grow up together. How would it have been if you were the only child?
    Also, if you wait around until you are financially ready, emotionally ready, buy a new place, build on another room, get a new job, etc, etc, you'll never do it.
    Sure 2 is harder than 1; and 3 is harder than 2, but it is all WORTH IT. you will see. =D

    This is just me babbling. I am, by no means, an expert on the subject.

    Happy new year to you, Andy & cute Dylan. May you all be blessed with all the good things in life. I look forward to seeing more of your artwork, as always.

    Humungasaurus Hugs. (Big hugs) he he

  5. Tam, you do have alot of your plate right now. The only things I found that were helpful to me, was when I stopped breastfeeding, although I loved the closeness, I was so grateful to get my body back again. I breastfed up until about 8 months, but weaned off slowly, by offering bottles and other drinks, plus solids. Eventually I think the other stuff was more interesting. But that was a major step. I had gone back to work as the rights as a parent weren't as good then, so I had to have a routine and that was also brilliant. Children of all ages respond really well to routines,fixed bed times and meal times, they know what to expect and will adapt okay, although there might be some shouting initially. I didn't go for the second child as my then husband already had two other children by a previous marriage and felt he had done his time as a father. Initially I did feel I was missing out and my daughter might miss out also, but it has been fine and she is quite happy being an only child (her half brother and sister are way older than her and had left home). Now as a single parent, I might be more inclined to leave her alone if she had a sibling, but that would be a convenience thing for me, and like you say it is all about them.

    As for your situation, you will one day realise that Dylan is less dependent on you, maybe when he starts nursery/kindergarten, you will feel sad at that, and a bit miffed, but it will be okay. I went back to doing some studying when she was a baby and did an A'level in English at nightschool, simply to have something for myself, other than work, being a mother and a wife. You will be fine, and if there is meant to be a second baby circumstances will present themselves in such a way that it happens anyhow. All the very best for this new year. xx

  6. OOh Tam I remember those days of babyhood, it's tough!!
    I have 2 children aged 7 and 12 with a 5 year age gap between them they argue a lot over everything, they are in 2 completely different stages in their lives and it's hard to find a middle ground at the moment.
    When I first had my daughter(the 7 year old) I found it really hard to cope, having just one child was a breeze for me but then adding the 2nd it all changed and I found it very difficult indeed.
    I obviously love my daughter to bits and wouldn't change her for the world, but I also know if i'd of just had the one child life would have been a lot easier for me.....but who needs easy eh? ;)

    Hugs for you sweetie

    Micki x

  7. Oh, Tam! HUGS!

    First of all, I wish you a successful 2011! I can only imagine being a parent is tough, but I'm certain, as time goes on, you'll see that you made a good choice with Dylan and will make a good choice for a second if that is what you decide!

    I want to say that you've been such an inspiration to me these last 2+ years! You are a tremendous artist, and you have the most incredible classes!! (I hope to take your MMM class just as soon as I can scrape together enough money!) You are a phenomenal teacher! Your art always inspires me to learn more, improve my art, and to love myself (which, I admit, has been incredibly difficult in 2010!)

    I just want you to know that everyone, parent or not, has struggles. Like you said, we are better when we learn from them! Continue to grow with Dylan and Andy, and when you look back in 10 years, you will see just how far you have come! Remember, we are all with you- some in spirit since we live a gazillion miles away. We all love and care about you, your life, and your struggles.

    Take care, my friend, and grow with this new year!


  8. Wishing you a fabulous 2011 and it's really touching to read your post about parenting and the struggles and feelings you are going through. I totally understand how you can love a little one so much, but at the same time the responsibility, loss of freedom and such is a huge change in life. My husband and I just got a puppy - and my oh my the work involved. I love him to bits, but it does seem all very scary and one day when we decide to become will it all be!? Definitely take the time to think about big decisions and always you need a break and get help when you need it! I'm sure some babysitting time will be good for all :)

  9. first of all, happy new year to you and your family. tam....

    oh, how i can relate to your young years with small children to tend to....always tired and no time for yourselves...and resenting the fact that you cannot have the time to do art or etc....i just want to mention the fact that one day you will look back and wish you had these years back....from experience they are the least for us they were and we raised 8 children...his,mine and ours..... big, big hugs.... ;)

    looking forward to mmm.....

  10. Oh, do I remember the motherhood days you are writing about. Wow, it really is the hardest job in the world. I am the mother of one child. I wanted more, but the blessing for more was not mine to have. My daughter was born premature and literally fought for every breathe. While in the hospital I met a couple who desperately adored their sick little baby boy...he was their second son, the first one had passed, and sadly this second child passed away also while in the NICU. After that, my outlook was changed forever. One, two, three, it doesn't really's not the quantity it's the blessing of the experience. This dear family would have sold their souls for one precious child and for the rest of my life, in honour of them, one will always be enough in my world. If you are blessed with more...enjoy that too!

  11. Hi Sweetie,
    Happy New Year, Ya beat me with ya new entry (I haven't written in some time) First let me say ALL of whatcha feeling is perfectly NORMAL! Ya see being a parent of any child comes with alot of demands. But to parent a child while having a severe illness (IE: RA, RSD, etc..) is a completely different from other (hate to use the word normal, but it fits) normal parenting. Ya have to worry if ya getting the right amount care for yaself as well as for Dylan. This comes at a higher price then those parents who have no illness. As for Dylan being a handful in the attention dept. My Tashena taught Lil Love "quiet time" which meant when she became to demanding/clingy Tashena would tell Lil Love "I think ya need some "Quiet Time" Which meant she was put in her room with her special books and toys. She would always fall asleep. Teaching Dylan now that he (as well as Mum & Da) need alone time isn't a bad parenting tip. How many times do we wish for alone time as an adult? Plenty. With Dylan learning "Quiet Time" he can learn to entertain himself and ya and Andy can get some "adult time" or even work on projects yaself. Lil Love has quite the imagination and I love hearing her on the monitor speaking to her "Imaginary Friends Kayla, Messy Molly, Alex" She has quite the conversations. lol Please don't feel like teaching Dyaln quiet time is in any way being a Nazi Parent. It's far from it, he will learn to rely on himself for some fun, without relying on mum & da to do it. When Dylan is in need of attention and it isn't quiet time for him. Try giving him his own journal. Lil Love has had hers since she was less then a year old. He will love it. Give him his own crayons or pencil, as he grows ya add to his supplies. Lil Love adores putting stickers in her journal as well as using colored pencils. Question, When ya lay Dylan down does he have any toys, books in his crib? I know doctors say don't do it. We found Lil Love needed that kind of thing. We have 3-4 books and a few toys in her crib (now her bed) This way if she woke in the night she would play abit or read and not cry for Mum & Da. Just an idea is all.
    As for having more than one child, it's not at all hard. I had Roland & Tashena 16 months apart and Roland was a helper. In fact he would let everyone know "Tana was HIS baby!" lol He gave her the nickname the day he met her. I believe Dylan is going to be fine with or without a sibling. Why? Because he has two of the greatest parents raising him. You and Andy make sure his needs are met. Ya worry over if ya doing things right (which means ya far from selfish parents) I know sometimes it gets over wheleming, Just know we're all here for ya. Loving & supporting ya the best we can. Trust me if I lived close by, Ya and Andy would be coming to claim Dylan because I'd be watching him so much. lol
    Wishing 2011 filled with Peace, Love, and creativity hun.
    Love & Hugs, Poe

  12. Tam, thank you for posting this. Why is it so HARD to find other mothers who feel these things? How come all the moms I see smile in the grocery store with the screaming baby on their shoulder and pretend like they don't need more than 45 minutes of sleep at night? How come they all pretend like they never turn on Elmo to distract their child so they can get the dishes done? Why does everyone think the world needs to see this perfect face of motherhood instead of the camaraderie that we all need so we don't feel like we're all alone in the world? My son is 4 and he will be an only child. I HATED having an infant, and toddler. I got him video games for Christmas with the hope that he'll spend time playing them and just let me THINK for a few minutes! I went from being an organized, punctual, working woman to a frazzled, cluttered, stay-at-home mom who never knows where my keys are. Why can't more people just say "Hey, me too! Let's talk."?

  13. What a beautiful post - I'm sure we all feel that way sometimes - wondering weather or not to have a second is something that we deal with too - Kendra is now 5 (!) and it is getting so much easier to parent (believe me, it does get easier :) so the idea of doing it all again to be where you are now (read, no freedom - but a lot of joy - and poop :) is so intimidating, but I agree with you that it would be nice to offer her a sibling. To have the time factor to deal with must also be a challenge. But I also think that a few years from now, we will be through the tough stuff and have the family we want? But the answers don't come easily - and for some of us (with IVF and adoption as an example) having a baby is such an undertaking, it is easy to say forget it.
    I believe that we will all get to where we are meant to be - the fun part is seeing if we have the patience to get there, lol!
    HAPPY NEW YEAR to you and your beautiful family of 3 - who knows what this one will bring you . . . xoxo

  14. Tam may I first start out by saying THANK YOU! It's so nice to read a post by someone that is a realistic representation of motherhood. I hate reading these blogs that are all tralala I can do everything with one hand tied behind my back and my children are adorable angels falala!

    They aren't angels. They are demonic monsters sent to try us :P Well some of the time ;) And some of the time you wonder how you ever breathed without them. I fully understand where you are coming from - I have three aged 13, 10 and 3 and all going through their own stages of hormonal inbalance at the mo. My eldest two came off the breast straight away at 6 months. My youngest sounds just like your bubba - she still trys a sneaky 'bubble?' now ;) I think she was around 2.5yrs old when she gave up. I think it was only because she was nearing nursery age that we tried to wean her away - up till then my feelings were - it must be still there for a reason, she wouldn't even contemplate powdered or cows milk so it was the only way to give me peace of mind that she was getting the calcium she needed.

    I still don't see my friends as much as I used to and my OH and I had just one date night last year ;) We are now of the opinion that 'our' time will be when they are old enough to be left alone until then nearly all our time is family time. Or one of us watches the kids while the other has a break and vice versa.

    Don't get me wrong - now the youngest is at nursery - more freedoms are opening up to us and it wont be long till she's at school proper. So I am now finding more time to play with my art and OH is finding more time to fish or dabble in his bird hobby. It's all balance and it will all sort itself out in the end.

    Yes when you have two there comes a time when they play together - around about the same time they discover their ability to squabble like cat and dog. There are pro's and cons and it's hard work but for the most part lots of fun (she says looking at her chewed finger nails *g*) As Linda said - take your time and talk it through with hubby :)

    Happy New Year!

  15. {Hugs} Tam.

    As the mommy of six children (one of whom is just a few months younger than Dylan), let me just say, that this "all consuming" stage does finally end. They become such joys. Their thirst for knowledge and their wonder and enthusiasm are contagious, and they inspire us in so many ways. My favorite years are 2 to 5. They are such good company, but are more idependent too.

    My experience has been that two children are easier than 1. They occupy each other, so that I don't have to be the sole entertainer. I can actually sit at the table and sketch while they pretend to be battling fire breathing dragons, or school bus drivers, or a Star Wars character in the playroom.

    Don't be so hard on yourself. It's a learning process. And in the end... LOVE really is the most important element.

    One tiny bit of advice? Never let being a "super parent" get in the way of the love between you and your husband. We did that for a couple of years, and paid a high price. Now, we make sure that we keep each other first when and where we can. We don't get to go out much, but we have wonderful "date nights" at home after our little ones are asleep. Rented movies... fancy take-out dinners... and candle light... Who needs to leave the house? LOL (just kidding, but it's better to spoil each other a little than to "forget about it" because you can't go out)

    I've gone on too much.

    You can do all this and more. Mommies and Daddies are what keeps this world the wonderful, whimsical, beautiful place it is by gifting another life with the chance to shine :)

    Love, Linda

  16. Ah Tam ....just finding a little time for myself and so am catching up on Willowing and find your post. Now...I know I had my kids so many years ago (36, 39 and 40 now!!!!) but as you know I also have three little grandchildren too....5, 2 and nearly 1.

    Only today my youngest son said to me on the phone "It's been really hard work with Joseph (1 in Feb) all day every day going to grandparents/friens to hand him over to..... well he amuses himself a bit but if he catches us looking at him it all changes and we don't get away with a second longer...."

    :-) All I can say is Tam, I know and still remember how hard the early years of being a parent are but even when you think you are mucking it all up, you will be bestowing blessings of love upon your little Dylbie. Every moment that you give, every moment that your sacrifice will become treasured memories and all the tricky bits will just fade...I promise.

    Of course what happens in the end, is that you wonder where all the years went and why they went so quickly....what happened? Why did I waste time being grumpy, telling him off, grumbling about the mess, stressing about everything and never having enough time......and then you would give anything to have just one day back when it could all happen again, no matter how tired you feel at the end of it.

    But I know you already know this ....parenthood is the hardest thing in the world darling.....and there will always be times when you wonder why the little perishers don't realise you have needs comes in the end and you know that that is the way it has always been and always will be, many years after we have all left this earth. Your little son will love you and grow up with wonderful memories of two loving, bright, intelligent, creative, inspiring parents....parents who are human and make mistakes but ....most importantly his parents and his parents who love him unconditionally, always and ever.

    As for having another, I posed this very point to No. 2 son on the phone today...."Company for each other darling...they will play together"

    "Are you mad Mum? Argue and fight together more like..."

    "Oh yes...forgot all that for the moment. Yes well they would play too love."

    "Hmm not a chance right now."

    Ha ha....yet my daughter had two and is totally happy with that even though there is plenty of fighting....they look so sweet when she climbs into bed with her big brother to go to sleep!

    Well for all the smiles and the jokes, I had three within 4 years but of course it was a long time ago and women generally were not under the pressure they are under today. Still I did go out to work partime once my youngest was 2 but it is still not the same. You girls have so much on your plates nowadays, it is completely diffeeent to the 1970's.

    But...I will say that I loved having my little tribe of kids, it wasn't twice the work having two, nor thrice the work having three. In fact no. 3 was the easiest baby of all...I think he had to be, there was too much going on in the rest of the house to pander too much to his needs.

    Whatever you decide will be the right thing and whenever you look back at 2010 and feel exhausted just thinking about it, just pop in and look at him once he has finally fallen asleep for the night.

    Much love Tam

    Lynda xx

  17. Tam, i identify so much with your experiences and feelings, that i had to share with you.
    First of all your post never gave me the impression of you not loving your child, but i understand the guilt we feel when we express this kind of feelings at loud.
    I know what it feels to not owning your time, house and life itself, hehehe. I know it can be incredible frustrating at times as much as blissful at other magical moments.
    I truly believe parenthood, especially motherhood, and especially if you are a stay at home mom and spend the entire day with your baby, are doors that once you´ve crossed them, there´s no return to your old self, but this, as scary as it can be, it´s one of the most profound and marvelous growing opportunities if one decides to live them like so.
    My child everyday faces me with my highest and lowest parts. It´s a painful process, i´ve cried, written, talked and tought so much about it, because it´s not easy to see the obscure places in me, the ones i never wanted to look at or even ignored i had, but he shows them to me in ways i can´t and don´t want to avoid anymore, also he├ęs become the inspiration behind every soul work i do like love myself deeply so i´m able to love him in a more widely and truthfuly ways.
    My son is 3 and a half years, i still brestfeed him, we´re together all the time and there are times when he is very clingy and i feel absorbed most of the time, because all my world is spinning around himself, but then i remind myself i´m doing the most important work i can do, raising a human being and that takes every bit of effort, love and presence i´m able to give, and please note i said i´m able to, cause one of the most important insights i´ve had is the acceptance of the mother i´m capable to be at every single moment with love and understanding (or at least trying)to finally let go the ideal and utopic image of the mother i would like to be.
    Dear Tam, thanks for sharing this deep feelings, i know every mother has felt like you more often that she would like to admit ;)
    Love and blessings to you and your beautiful family. Big hugs!

  18. More good news TAM!!!! Check yer mail! You got paid today! I joined the Mythical Makings!! YAHOOOOO! Kiss that baby for all of us!

  19. I read your blog with tears of a mother.....all too soon it passes and that breath you need to take is all you have....I wish someone would have told me the simple things like putting shoes on a little foot will be something you will wish for again(hard to believe now)...I gues as you grow as a family together you creat memories and is worth every fight, cross word, sleepless night, to know as teenagers they still call you mum when they need you..and for the better part of the time they do SLEEP IN THEIR OWN BED....carry on your journey..look back and is all yours..

  20. Ha HA

    you Really Really need that second baby, oh yes indeedy you do,

    Dylan requires siblings

    one is a pet two is a family,

    your life is WAYYY too easy at the moment....

    With one or many it will be hard to have 'me' time again do go for it in numbers I say...

    as a mom i think always of my kids then my partner then me, I take care of me so I can take care of them - they are my fabulous world. They live life deeply because they are secure in the family that raised them

    I may not have much time to myself but I always always have had, and still find the opportunity for, family time...

    good bad and indifferent those times are what Life IS about I can't wait for my next generation,

    I'm so glad my family has dominated my life... my lovely Son (19) (who breast fed far longer than was strictly socially acceptable) just videoed me painting and singing, and helped me learn adobe illustrator and flash in about ten minutes flat... so they do come in useful later in life... my sister in law will be a nan this year and my sister is having her third baby as soon as she can - nothing beats new life...

    Happy New Year Chick- get barefoot and pregnant Quick

    must check-into your web site I intended doing one of your classes this year but think I may have missed January Class?


  21. good luck with having a second child..I have got 3 young boys and will be so glad when they return to school tomorrow..I think being snowbound a lot doesnt help. Just wondering if you could manage to wean him so that he is less reliant on I think you need a break. when my youngest was clingy I just used to put him in the pram and go for a long walk to clear both our heads and I was forever giving him Nice biscuits and mashed bananas and wouldnt be without dummies (I dont care what pc mums say as we all need peace)

  22. Joyous 2011 to you and yours. It is impossible to reason with a toddler, no matter your parenting philosophy, so don't be so hard on yourself. Your child (and y'all) are normal and healthy! It's your job and responsibility to parent your child, not be their friend first (not that you didn't know that). It will get easier in time with Dylan; however, not if you add new stress factor(s) to the mix before you're all ready for it. It's incredibly hard when you don't have any family and support outlets around you. I speak from experience. Keep in mind the following: THE DAYS ARE LONG, BUT THE YEARS ARE SHORT.

    I don't want to be the negative nag on the blog, but I shoot straight from the hip. Fear child can be successfully socialized in many ways without having a sibling. Siblings don't always "entertain" each other and sometimes have the opposite of the desired effect. One child is without-a-doubt is easier! Two kids are two times the drama, money, stress, etc... bottom line.

    BUT... having a multiple child family can be a beautiful fulfilling experience-- twice the love, twice the memories, twice the belly laughs, & twice the good times. Just embrace your decision once it's made and charge forward as best you can with all the love in your heart. You can't fail!

    P.S. I'm ready for the digital class when you are.

  23. I am a mother of 4 children, all grown and married now, and I wouldn't trade any of them. Was it hard? Yes. Were there times I wanted to scream? Yes. Do I regret it? Not one moment; not even the ones when I thought I would be driven mad. The first child is the toughest because a baby turns your life completely upside down. Dreams get put on hold, favorite activities get pushed to the background, and you wonder if you'll ever have a life again. Well, it does end, and all too fast. Sometimes it's hard to cherish the moments when your kids are fighting or screaming, or when you're standing in the midst of dirty clothes, dirty dishes, and dirty diapers. And it will be a long while before your needs get noticed by your children, but watching them grow and bloom into responsible adults that contribute to the world is a miracle that no other success can match up to. Children are our legacy. Best wishes for the New Year and may angels bless the choices you make!

  24. Dear Tam,
    Wish all of you a peaceful new year!

    I have 3 children, a boy Gege 10y7m, Luci 6y5m and Panni 5. I grown up alone - that's why it was very difficult when I heard that I'm pregnant again. My first thought way "Yay I have to divine my sons "expectations" or "heritage" hihi.
    My boy was very cute, he loved her sister very much. Our problem is that between Lucy an Panni there is only 16 month, and Luci treated always her little sister as a baby. When Panni was 2 years old she rebelled against Lucy and they have lots of war.
    In Hungary they said " little children little problem (worry) big children big problem.

    So much easier with more children, they playing a lot, and Gege as he is 10 years now can care of them.
    Otherwise our little is the most clever and the most crafty. (she is better draw, and dance and swimm than the others and she is very happy when she gets anything little thing.

    So enjoy your little devil it will be worst :)))

    But always your Andy should be the first than the second is Dylan.
    He will grow up and you will be again alone with Andy, so stay close to him!! Childre is only the period of time. You know I love them and I always feel that I am not enough for all of them.

    Sorry for my english hope you understand what I mean.


  25. Hello sweetie - a big hug to you from one old mom to a young mom! I have 4 children and 3 grandchildren. My youngest will be 18 in February. I giggled when I read what you said about breastfeeding, as my youngest would have stayed on my breast all day long, carried in a sling, if I had let him. Weening him was not the nightmare I was afraid it would be. It was actually harder for me than for him, as I truly loved that quiet time closeness during his feedings (he was about your baby's age when we weened). It took planning to do it, but it was done over a weekend and we moved on. =)

    I do remember your exhaustion - you are beautifully transparent and honest about your feelings right now. Motherhood is a combination of high highs and low lows. The physical aspects of taking care of little one's passes - the struggling to put on shoes, change a diaper of one who simply does not want to have his/her diaper changed, the tantrums that make us wonder if our children are some kind of possessed creatures...those times DO pass. There comes a time of reason (to some extent...) and, as you said, everyone works together to get it all done. However, the emotion aspects of motherhood never end...even when the children become adults and move into their own lives. We, as mothers, are tied to our children forever. We feel their pain as our own, and their joy. We suffer and celebrate with them. That is a beautiful thing, though, and really only something a mother can do or understand.

    We had no regrets EVER about the number of children we had. We left it to chance and would have welcomed more if we could have, but after the 4th child there were no more. Some days I moved through my days in a fog, only to fall into bed, only to be awoken in the middle of the night by someone's needs. My husband and I had almost no alone time - yet, neither of us would trade any of it. The benefits of children and family far outweigh the short years (although they feel like they will go on forever) of total exhaustion, questioning my parenting abilities, lack of sleep, tantrums, etc.

    And just a side note - you will never get a full night of sleep again. Never. Every age brings it's own reason for us mom's to either have our sleep interrupted or to lay awake at night questioning our choices for them, or their choices for themselves...then they learn to drive...then they fall in love and their hearts get just goes on and on. =) But what an incredible blessing and privilege to be the mother of these children! We, as moms, belong to a very special club. =)

    You and your husband will make the right choice, based on what is best for your family. Trust your instincts in all things. Hugs to you and Happy New Year!

    ~ Donna

  26. Hello Tam,

    Thought I would weigh in a bit regarding the second child decision...this is just *my* experience of course.

    I remember being so excited at the thought of another little one...and I also remember sitting on the nursery floor crying as I thought of my first born losing the undivided attention I had been able to give him up until the second one was born.

    It is a difficult decision.

    On the one hand I wanted my little "tyrant-king" knocked off his throne...after all, he had to learn that the world did NOT revolve around him (although it did in many ways!! LOL!)

    But on the other hand I wanted him to experience all the love and attention I could possibly give him, to grow up so secure in the knowledge that he was greatly and deeply loved.

    Looking back (my children are now 20, 18, 14, 12 and 12) the absolute *best* spacing between the 5 children was that 4 year gap in between the 18 year old and the 14 year old.

    My first children were too close together (in my opinion....but some people enjoy that...I didn't however). It was quite difficult having two in diapers and so needy. When I had my third, the other two were much older and could be helpers as opposed to "need-ers."

    All of that said, things will unfold as they will unfold. Only so much of this is within our control anyway, eh?

    Blessings, peace and prosperity in the New Year!

  27. No wise words as I am not a mum and can't offer advice, but... if you're thinking of weening Dylan off breastfeeding and think it's going to be too difficult, just remember this Little Britain clip:



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