We plant the seed.

It’s a massive responsibility, realizing just how much influence you have over this little human you created. Constantly watching yourself and trying to enforce positive routines, positive environments and habits. To be honest, I’ve started implementing these routines almost more so for myself.

Nathan and I have never been good at routine, that’s why we never really set one for Torben prior to now. I mean, as mothers we really do want to have family breakfast and dinner sitting at the table, we want to bath our children every single night just before bed, and we want to get these little humans of ours sleeping through, but! It’s easier said than done. Because who has to actually enforce these routines? That’s right, us.

We are only human, sometimes we let that family dinner slide because your little one is out of whack, or your simply too tired to give them a proper bath so the shower it is and if you have had a very long stressful day a wet cloth will do.

We love our children, but we need to learn to love ourselves enough to know and be okay with imperfections. We are raising our children with all the love and positivity we can muster after all!

All the love and support,

The Three Bears NZ.

Blur.

Does anyone else struggle with a messy mind? I find myself in a constant state of seeing things that need to be done, but leaving my current task undone! And, I don’t know what you’ve been told but, baby brain lasts a very long time. I had it bad during pregnancy, and, I still have it, in some cases I would say it’s worse since having our cub.

Between insomnia, our child waking up during the night for feeds and just generally not getting into bed early enough, my baby brain is shocking. My midnight bedtime is a little too late, but if you are anything like me, you’re not an early night or an early morning person. Besides, when else am I meant to get shit done?!IMG_20170304_163914.jpg

This week, I’ve just taken a step back to chill out a bit more, and it feels good. It feels really good to just not adult for a few days. Infact I might just conclude this week as a write-off, and squish all of my adulting into one whole day.

My whole life feels like a bit of a write-off at the moment. Between trying to learn this little being I grew for 9 – 10 months, which, is already a write-off automatically because, let’s be honest we don’t remember much of our pregnancies except the morning sickness, what we craved pork rinds, chocolate sundays and that we didn’t like labour. My early days and weeks of motherhood ( I know i’m still in early motherhood but, those super early days) were a combination of pizza and thai takeaways, muesli bars, bags of chips, chocolate and lots of netflix. They were, and still are on occasion lovely and heartwarming but sometimes, tedious, stressful and forced.

My point is, my weeks are a blur, OUR weeks are a blur. When i’m telling someone about something that happened weeks ago it turned out it was only days ago, I can’t concentrate because my time and days are in small increments between my child’s wake and sleep periods, so my days feel stupidly short but longer than ever, and often I feel like I barely get anything done and if I don’t write it down it doesn’t happen.

We are all only just getting into a routine for the first time in… what was I talking about? Kidding. The first time in what feels like a very long time. It feels good, to know what to expect, kind of. But that changes ALL THE TIME when you have a wee cub, and as much as I like to say I embrace it, it’s havoc at times and i’m just waiting for the next short routine to appear. Between being a mama and trying to start some sort of business I’m finding it highly challenging at the moment..

Do you other mothers struggle with juggling tasks and routines? I’d love to hear what other mama’s do!

All the love and support,

The Three Bears NZ.

My personal top 10 items for new Mama’s!

Since becoming a mother I have found certain items that I simply couldn’t and cannot live without. When I was pregnant and constantly preparing for the arrival of our cub I thought I needed everything. I wanted to be as prepared as I could possibly be! So, here’s my list of thing’s I have personally found invaluable to motherhood and raising a child; This is no particular order and it is not sponsored, these are simply items I use and love.

  • product-medela-swingbreastpump3Medela Swing Breast pump – Knowing what I know now, I will take this to the hospital with me when I’m giving birth to our next cub. When your milk comes in, your breasts will be extremely engorged, lumpy and painful. I found from the advice of my amazing Mama friends, a hot shower with a boobie massage and a good pump relieved this completely. Plus in those first weeks your breasts are learning how much your child is going to need so often your child won’t be able to empty your breasts, in which case the pump is amazing to finish the job. Why Medela?  The Medela Swing Breast Pump is an electric breast pump that is designed to mimic a baby’s actual nursing. Phase 1, the stimulation phase, is a rapid pumping rhythm to get your milk flowing. Phase 2, the expression phase, is a slower pumping rhythm for gentle and efficient expression – Information courtesy of http://www.ohbaby.co.nz. HIGHLY RECOMMEND. – Medela swing pump
  • Netflix – You’re going to spend so much time in those early weeks constantly feeding, so you might as well invest in something that will help you maintain some sanity and prevent boredom! Besides, it’s a lot easier than trying to master using your cellphone whilst breastfeeding!

Muslin wrap nature baby

  • Muslin wraps – I didn’t think that I would use them all that much when I was pregnant, I was so wrong! They are awesome to take with you when you’re on the go as a spare blanket, a changing mat, burp cloths, breastfeeding cover and the list goes on!  – Wraps

bluebubbles-dsh

  • Mum 2 Mum Dream Swaddle – An awesome product that prevents our cub from startling himself but also keeps him nice and wrapped up and is SO MUCH EASIER to use than a wrap when you have a wriggly child. I’m confident that this product has helped our cub’s nights sleeps go from 2 hours to 4 -5 hours. It’s also much more affordable than a lot of sleep bags on the market. – Mum 2 Mum Dream Swaddle
  • 002823166Bonds wondersuits – These are well designed and thought out onesies! They have a two way zip which means you don’t have to deal with a million buttons to change your cubs nappy, but they are exceptionally soft and warm! Awesome for nightwear or the colder months, plus they come in awesome patterns and colours Bonds Wondersuits
  • Snack food – You won’t have much time to cook, so grab and eat food is essential. I always have nuts, popcorn, brown rice crackers, carrots and celery with hummus, muesli with yogurt, heaps of fresh fruit and homemade frozen meals on the go! You won’t regret being overly prepared with food! And don’t beat yourself up for eating a lot of takeaways, sometimes you just can’t be bothered organizing food, and that’s absolutely fine!
  • Nursery_storage_rolling_cartA wheeled trolley changing station – This has been an awesome investment! We currently live in a two story flat and the thought of having to constantly go up and down the stairs to fetch clothes, nappies and various other items from our cubs nursery seems like a waste of time. Specially when you have a screaming wee cub, not fun. It’s just plain convenient.
  • A comfortable chair – You’re going to be feeding through the night A LOT and will find yourself falling asleep constantly in those early weeks. I personally found breastfeeding in bed after a week was giving me a bad back so I had to change to a seated position which I found much more comfortable. I highly recommend a comfortable chair for your cubs nursery!
  • nappy clutch.jpgPortable nappy wallet
    – This has been an awesome product! When you’re on the go and need to change that poopy nappy (which you absolutely will, trust me). These are perfect and super convenient! They have a slot for nappies, wipes and nappy bags. You can buy all different shapes, sizes, patterns and they just fit in your handbag!
  • doTERRA Essential Oils essential-oils-in-love-with-essential-oils.png– Remember, mama is also important, so don’t forget to look after yourself as well. Having a little routine every day just to keep your sanity is absolutely fine and you deserve it! My routine is at night, once our cub is down I have a hot shower, get into bed and  apply organic coconut oil with doTERRA lavender to my stretch marks , then I rub my doTERRA lavender, marjoram and cedarwood into my hands and inhale to release all the tension that was in my day! You can use essential oils to help with your beautiful cub as well! Such as lavender—One of the many benefits of Lavender is its calming properties. When you have a very unsettled baby it works wonders! Lavender oil has been used for centuries to soothe skin, ease feelings of tension, and promote a relaxing atmosphere. Add a few drops to a spray bottle with water and mist cot sheets to promote feelings of restful sleep. You might also try diluting a drop of Lavender with coconut oil for a soothing baby bedtime massage! My favourite is a couple of drops in our cubs bath. Worth every cent! – doTERRA. (Click join and save).

Those are my most favoured products! I hope it helps you gorgeous Mama’s and Mama’s to be!

All the love and support,

The Three Bears NZ.

Stigmas of a Mother.

As we grow our children and into our role as mothers, both physically and spiritually, we are constantly bombarded with advice and judgements.

If a mother chooses to breastfeed her child in public she’s bombarded with criticism, when a mother chooses to formula feed her child she’s also bombarded with criticism. The single most unfortunate thing about these stigmas, it seems to  be other woman; Mothers, bestowing their ‘god like’ judgement upon their fellow woman.

After having problems producing enough milk for my hungry wee cub, I decided for my sanity and my poor cubs little tummy, to switch to formula. It’s only been a couple of weeks, yet people haven’t hesitated to show their distaste. No wonder when I go to the doctors, nurses or I have to feed our child in public I feel ashamed to declare this fact. How unfair it is, that I we as mothers are made to feel that way! Breast is best?! More like shut your mouth Barabara you haven’t had a child under 43 for 100 years!

I’m currently in a state of mind in which I have to constantly remind myself that the choices I make are in the best interest of my child, because they are. A mother who has looked after her needs is a good mother, no, a great mother.

If a mother chooses to do her makeup, straighten her hair, go to the hair salon, take a 10 minute time-out, breastfeed, formula feed, let her child play computer games, enforce her child to play outside, co-sleep, promote self-settling, let her child cry, hold her child close that is her choice as a mother.

It is our duty as woman, to withhold our judgement, to apply self-awareness to the judgements that do pop up in our head and alter those thoughts into empathetic, supportive and understanding wavelengths.

I’m sick of people in general constantly feeling the need to spread their ‘anticipated’ advice. Did I ask for it? NO! Some of the information is useful, but that doesn’t make it any less annoying. Just remember the next time you open your fat gob to some poor heavily pregnant woman who’s been told “Enjoy the peace and quiet whilst it last’s honey!” a dozen times in that week alone or that poor mother who hasn’t had a full night’s sleep in, well, she can’t remember.. They don’t want to hear it. Every child is completely different and we will or are learning our child. Specially if you haven’t got your own children!

My greatest piece of advice I can offer: instead of passing judgment or pointless advice, tell her how awesome she rocks that baby belly or how amazing that mother at the checkout with a child having a full blown tantrum is doing! Or, if you have friends that are pregnant or having a young child, offer your help, bring them food, coffee, compliments and support.

The Three Bears NZ.

 

I broke down.

My baby boy is only four weeks and two days old so this blog is a constant, evolving and recent take on my experiences as I grow into motherhood.

I haven’t struggled in the past to show my emotion, in the sense that I would cry at regular intervals in the privacy of my own room. It’s good to expel all of that pent up energy and just let it run down your face. But for some reason, from when I found out I was pregnant to last night, I barely shed a tear. I’m usually calm and it takes a lot to make me explode in one way or another and I’ve just put it down to that until last night. It’s not from lack of needing to, I just didn’t have that urge to break down that entire length of time, which has to be a record.

If you frequent this blog or if you have experienced motherhood, you know that it’s sometimes draining, demanding and tiring. (We love our babies but it’s hard sometimes!).

In the last couple of weeks our boy hasn’t been sleeping that great, I understand he’s far too little for me to expect routine, but my mental health can’t cope on such small amounts of sleep.

img_20170207_105859_602I cried for the first time since mother hood last night. I had slept about 7 hours in 48 hours, and that was all broken. Torben had been absolutely grizzly all day, I had drank myself into a caffeine panic attack and I honestly, just FELT.LIKE.CRAP.

After a long day of visiting grandad and close friends, I was exhausted and, so was he. Once we got home, reasonably late in the evening, around 10pm, he started incessantly screaming. I tried everything apart from feeding him, my judgement was he had just eaten only an hour previous, surely it couldn’t be that. Needless to say he was screeching into the depths of my soul and I simply couldn’t cope. Once my partner had made him a bottle, I quickly handed him Torben and proceeded to break down in tears with my head in my hands. 

I was ashamed: I hate crying in front of anyone it doesn’t matter how close we are, I will still try to avoid it like the plague. I had my hands over my face because I couldn’t stand to be seen so weak.

I felt powerless: I felt in an instant that I was a failure of a mother and that surely my child shouldn’t be screaming like that. Surely, I should be able to help him always and take any pain away.

I felt stupid: I thought I must be exaggerating, surely I didn’t need to cry like that?

Finally, I felt fucking fatigued in every sense of the word. Physically I could barely pick up my feet and mentally I couldn’t handle the smallest thing to go wrong. If someone had so much as said the slightly wrong thing, I would’ve lost the plot. My mental capacity to deal with life had gone with my lack of sleep.

Fortunately I am incredibly lucky to have an amazing man in my life. He took the night shift, even though he had work the next day, and I managed to get about 6 – 7 solid hours of sleep in. Today I feel like I’m on my way to feeling somewhat human again.

I’m learning that, I’m not capable of being the ‘perfect’ mother, and that’s okay.  It’s okay to ball your eyes out and be vulnerable because you can start to pick yourself up after that. I also now realize I really need to start looking after myself; I need to eat better food regularly, force myself to sleep more, go for walks often and create positive thoughts.

Remember, when you feel like you can’t cope, you aren’t alone. I’m always here if anyone needs to talk, even if it’s so much as you needing to vent. You can message me on my facebook or simply e-mail me at thethreebearsnz@gmail.com! I will ALWAYS respond.

All of the love and support,

The Three Bears NZ.