For my own good.

How do you get to a point where you think it is justified to hit your child, your own flesh and blood? Lash out your punches to the point where you child ends up limping for a few days afterwards. Her growing and changing body, with all the growing aches, pulled and thrown and thrashed. How do you get to the point where you think it is OK? Is it really the full story when you think and say you are going it for her own good? What pathetic kick did you get out of it all? A release of tension perhaps. Of long held anger, not necessarily just towards her.

The more I grow and learn, the more adult I become with my own share of worldly experiences and views, I understand more and more all the baggage you had been carrying. You still carry. All the resentment and anger you hold against the world. I can see why, and I think I understand at a subconscious level why you are the way you are. Why you were the way you were. But I was just a child. I did not deserve for all of that to be taken out on me.

As I caress my little son’s hair while he sleeps contently with his face plastered on to my chest, I cannot stop thinking that I was that small once. That small and that trusting. As I hear the rhythmic, soft breathing full of love and joy, I think you must have held me like that once and I must have slept feeling loved too. From that quiet, beautiful moment on the couch, how long and what does it take to reach a point when I too might feel justified to pull my child’s hair, angry fist-full at a time, fully knowing and wanting it to hurt to make him listen, to make him study…to make him comply. I cannot begin to imagine how one reaches that point. And I do not want to know.

I just wish to stop aching from all your blows from so many years ago.

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I am so sad and lonely, but am too proud to mention it to anyone.

And too hurt to talk to you about it

and tired

You make me so unhappy, and you have no right to

I watch as my hands become uglier and tired looking

and I know I am losing my chaces

that I have already missed the boat

in a lot of ways

and that angers me further

you make me so unhappy and you have no right to

never thought this would be it

in a loveless and unfulfilling arrangement

never ever

never

thought i was marrying for love

and you do say you do

love me, that is

but I do not believe you

not at all

you would do something about the unnhappiness

in the corner of the room

if you did love, and cared

you make me so unhappy and this isn’t fair

As a six month old, you..

1. Weigh 8.2 kgs (18 lb) 2. Look more like a boy than a baby. But are still incredibly beautiful with big, soulful eyes. 3. Started on solids early this month. First banana, then brocolli, followed by carrots, avocado, cauliflower and potatoes. Love your food, although the last week you haven’t been too keen on anything. 4. Have had your first cold – only last two days though. But this is probably why you went off your food for a while. 5. Your first tooth popped out on 9th Jan – so as soon you crossed the 5 months mark. And boy is it sharp! You have two now – the second only just popping out at 23 January. You also have loads more white spots. 6. As soon as you turned six, you seem to have new skills and more control over your hands. 7. You are very chatty. 8. No longer hold your legs up in the air much, but move your fingers as if trying to catch something often. 9. Try and sing along at rhyme time sometimes. 10. Are more particular about who and what you smile at. Gaze for a while first before deciding whether or not to smile at someone – even your grandparents. But most of the time you do regardless, but you like to look first. 11. For the first time in almost 6 months, you were not keen on eating/ feeding on 23rd January. 12. From about 5.5 months you have been able to hold a spoon and ‘feed’ yourself. You mostly end up gagging as you push the spoon too far down your throat, but overall it is a really good progress and to state the obvious, your hand-to-mouth coordination is pretty impressive. 13. You have much much more alert. 14. You sometimes find it hard to concerntrate on feeding as you are too busy being noesy and trying to catch everything going around you. 15. You are still not too bothered about turning to your sides, let alone crawling. 16. You like being read and sung to. 17. You like being in the sling. 18. You do not like being left on your own for too long. 19. You have once cried because I left the room, but it might also just have been because you were hungry. You do not seem to mind when I leave (yet!). 20.You sleep in your cot in our room. Well most of the time you do, sometimes you just end up in our bed with us. And you quite like it (so do I. Daddy might not be too keen though as he ends up getting pushed to the edge when it’s three of us in bed). 21.You do not really have a favorite-favorite toy but you like bee, your silver paper thingy and owl. But it might just be that these are the toys we give to you most often. 22. We joined baby signing classes this month. It’s early days still for there to be any impact. 23. It took the best part of the first week of January for you to ‘get over’ Christmas.

24. You made it to Nepal for the first time on 28th Jan 2015. You were restless on the flights – while not crying, you were keen not to miss any sight or events around you, and therefore were particularly unsettled which resulted in little if any rest for either of us. You were all smiles when we got home though. You beamed at your uncles at the airport, and then at your grandparents at home, stealing their hearts from the first sight.

2014

This year will always hold a specialy place. Will probably always be thought back in fondness as the year our little man joined us.

So yes, on a personal level, this year has been an incredible one. Sitting down here, trying to think through it, it feels like it has been one big blur. In some ways it feels this year has been going on ‘forever’…while at the same time it hasn’t been long enough!

The first half was spent being pregnant and waiting and preparing for the big arrival. Volunteered at the local theatre till the end of the pregnancy, and continued working (albeit from home). Pregnancy was a breeze for the most part, but the delivery didn’t go to plan. Still looking back, it does’t feel like it was traumatic at all. Even the long hours when I was in proper labour, I look back in fondness, almost. And then he was there!

The second half has been about learning the ropes of parenthood, and also navigating through our relationship in its new status. It’s been hard, sure, but it has also been incredible. I am amazed at how easily and naturally we have taken to it all. We have had our ups and down, and moments of frustration, but looking back now it is clear we stand together, stronger than ever. And as I was saying over dinner today, we lead a good life.

This year has also been a year of new friendships. The antenatal classes have proven to be a lifesaver in terms of putting in place a strong support network for us. Also the idiom…’whereever I do, I meet myself’ has proven to be true again. Made friends with people only met in passing, and these friendships are proving to be the strongest. I feel happy and lucky.

Having said that, this year has also been about letting go friendships which were strong but were turning hunhealthy and toxic. It was hard for a while, but now I see it was for the best. I go through periods of guilty pangs but they are unjustified. It was unhealthy and had to be let go. And that’s all there is to it.

This has also been a year to struggling with my relationship with my own parents (some more), and shedding more tears over it. From feeling uncared of during early pregnancy to subdued and rather negative reaction to the birth announcement to the undiplomatic comments about the new arrival…to everything else in between, it’s not been the most pleasant. But this has also been a year of acknowledging and accepeting it all, and deciding that I am going to get on with them, and working on it.

Struggle with parents, and resulting instrospection also led to the realisation of the importance of having joy in ones heart.

Finally, one of the best things about this year has also been spending more time and getting to really know husbands parents. And being taught kindness.

2015

This is going to be a year of decluttering life, not letting the little things make me lose sight of the bigger picture  and allowing joy into my heart. Amen.

As a 5 month old, you…

1. Are incredibly beautiful

2. Weigh 17 lb 4oz (7.9 kgs)

3. Have a lovely head of hair

4. Are about to outgrow 3-6 months clothes

5. Have had your first Christmas, but decided the crowd and noise was far too much for you. Grizzled through the first half, and slept through the second.

6. Are still a good sleeper, but have started getting up once for a feed early morning

7. Are very chatty

8. Are very alert

9. Love looking at light bulbs and/ or anything bright

10. Love your paternal grandparents – beam into a big smile everytime you see them.

11. Do not like sitting on your poop. At all.

12. Started eating bits of banana. towards of the end of this month. Seem to quite like them.

13. Continue to like being in the sling

14. The song ‘Hitler has only got one balls’ calms you down instantly when upset.

15. Have started going to bed between 7:30 and 8 pm on his own accord.

16. Love having baths. Can float in water with just your head supported.

17. Have a good grip – hold on to our clothing when held and your own blankets in your pushchair.

18. Love standing. Get very excited when held upright.

19. Absolutely love bouncing on your jumpuroo.

20. You fell asleep on the jumpuroo once – it was rather cute.

21. Can sit up well, but not without support yet.

22. Sometimes you like to stop feeding and turn your head to smile at whoever is feeding you, almost as a thank you. So lovely.

23. Have just gone through your 19 week growth spurt, and have therefore been a bit grizzly and unsettled.

24. Continue to dribble profusely because of teething. Nothing has poped out there, but there are more white spots on your gums.

25. The last few days, you have struggled with constipation. Prune water seems to have helped.

26. Your poo-poos are quite firm now!

27. Got a pushchair, toys, hot water bottle, hand puppet, clothes and weaning set for christmas. Also, gloves from Max.

28. Have been on stage – in the slign during dress rehearshals.

29. Still mostly breastfeeding. You feed anywhere between 20 and 40 mins – so not as long as before.

30. Had your first road trip with just mum, and spent a night at Aunty Sarah’s.

31. Have got a passport.

31. Have been booked in for your first international flights.

32. Sleep in your cot now, and love your cot-mobile.

33. Love it when I hand-play-out nursery rhymes for you. Mostly you lie on the floor and I play out rhymes above you. Incy wincy spider is by far your favorite.

34. Like lifting your legs high and holding them up in the air.

35. Like having your nappy changed.

36. Belly laughed at around 4.5 months.

Autumnal thoughts

The autumn is well underway. Yet to get ‘properly’ cold but the colours are lovely all around. Some tree are already starting to shed and fade, though. I have found out that the closet part is easily walkable and is rather lovely. Until now I had thought it might be a bit too far to attempt a walk as there is always the case of having to walk back as well.

A restless and irritable state of mind led me to walk to the park the first time. I had a ‘I need to get out and I need to walk. Get my pulses going if I am to maintain my sanity’ kinda of a feeling. And so I did. He asked me if it was because of him, due to him, that I felt the need to get out. To leave, albeit for a little while. I said no although it truth it was a little bit because of his. His snappiness and impatience. His inability to express affection and listen. Having said that he is a lovely man and he does try. Just not the way in which I’d like him to. He looked last night. He is desperate to buy some sparklers for the wee one after it turned out he absolutely loved fireworks. He deals with the washing and so on. All of this while holding a full time-job that requires a long commute, while trying to write a book and while leading a protest to try and stop the co-op from building houses in the only bit of green open space around here. But in all of this, it’s just that sometimes I feel like I…now we, I suppose….come at the bottom of his list of priorities. That everytime he takes up something new, we are the ones who get neglected. Who get snapped at out of tiredness. And so on and so on. But hte bottomline is, this is actually not the case and he does try.

The need to be practical at all times gets to be though. But I can see why it’s important and know that I need to work on being more organised, more focused and disciplied. I need to stop breaking mugs and chipping places. It’s a miracle that I haven’t dropped the wee one yet! I sometimes wonder if I am just inherently clumsy or it is something I can stop being if I tried a little bit harder.

Life, overall, is at its best though. The wee one is absolutely gorgeous and so mellow, I sometimes forget I have a little baby with him. I cannot imagine not having him now, and in a lot of ways it doesn’t feel like our lives have changed a lot. Yes, I cannot just sit down to write as and when I want anymore. And I donot always get to watch an entire movie in one go and have lost count of the number of cups of tea that have gone cold and so now. But on a larger scale, I do not feel being worse off in terms of quality of life. If anything, it is enriched and I wouldn’t change it for the world (such a cliche, I know!).

Winter is definately in the air. This afternoon the ‘air’ felt the same as it to me as a little girl in school, early winter.

I hope it snows.

3 months!

As a three month old, you…

1. Weigh 6.64 kgs.

2. Sleep a minimum of 8 hours at night.

3. Smile lots.

4. Chat a lot 🙂 Make lot of gurgling, bird like noises.

5. Have just started doing firm (er) poo poo.

6. Have just started trying to roll on your side (we think the comparatively bluckier cotton nappies are keeping you rolling).

7. Absolutely love your vibrating chair. Particularly like the bee hanging-toy on it.

8. Enjoy playing on your play mat.

9. Make really good eye contact and invariably always smile while smiled at.

10. Have been swimming once and loved it.

11. Love going into the bath with me.

12. Love your baths in your baby bath (so all in all, love being in water and aren’t scared)

13. Are very mellow.

14. Have started reaching out to your hanging toys.

15. Have been on your first holiday (to Cromer).

16. Have had your feet dipped in the sea (Northern sea! So a cold one but your didn’t particularly mind).

17. Love being in the car and pushed around in your push chair.

18. This month we have used the sling a lot less.

19. Have drank upto 18 oz in six hours!

20. Have been to your first halloween party.

21. Been to your first fireworks display and were totally mesmerised by it.

22. Are completely loved by your cousin.

23. Find your granddad funny.

24. Have your dad and I besotted.

25. Still mostly breastfeeding.

26. Feed for a minimum of 40 minutues. 60 minutes are not uncommon.

27. Still sleeping in your moses basket but are very close to outgrowing it completely. The last few days we have started putting the moses basket in your cot so that you get used to the bars etc.

28. You are chattiest first thing in the morning and last things at night.

29. Are incredibly beautiful 🙂