Tag Archives: parents

Creating a timeline for our children

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I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the Facebook timeline, it’s occurred to me that my children will grow up to find that their Mum has kept a detailed chronological record of their lives from their birth (my status March 08 reads: Willow Heidi Smith, 1hr 24 min old, she arrived 6th March at 1.55am, she’s amazing) through to other major events (when my Mum passed away in November 2010 I wrote: few people have the privilege of being able to hold their loved ones as they gently pass from this world into the next, we love you Mum and we are all so grateful to have been together today, my heart is aching, such a beautiful and gentle mother, watch over us x x x x)

I’m starting to weigh up the pros and cons of this, on the plus side it means they will have a detailed window into their Mum and Dads lives, where we went (through all the ‘check-in’s) to how they behaved as infants but then I started to worry! If this is going to be there for them to read do I celebrate the positives enough or do I spend too much time moaning about sleepless nights and teething? Do I share things they will be mortified to read as young adults or am I recording memories that would otherwise slip away into the past?

As I mentioned above I lost my own Mum in 2010 and one of the overwhelming feelings I have is that I didn’t know her well enough, I mean I did obviously know her very well but I find myself wondering what she was like as a child, I can only guess at the things she would have ‘liked’ on Facebook, though to be fair she wasn’t much interested in technology so probably would never have used it even if she’d been able to (she had progressive MS for 32 years!).

So when my own children look back on my timeline, either with me or after I’m gone what will they be gaining from it? Will it reveal the real me or will it only show the version of me I choose to portray online? We all do a bit of a PR job on ourselves online… Some write with such melodrama that you’d never recognise their calm exterior on the street, others with charisma that far outperforms their face to face contact, I’ve known friends describe themselves in ways that are completely alien to me, but is this perception or reality?

My children will never know a world without touch screen, social networking, wireless technology, they will be different adults because of this… Make no mistake this is changing all the rules of social interaction! I’m sure some much smarter people are already studying these ideas and writing about them so I won’t claim to be an expert on human nature or psychology but I do know that relationships are built and developed based on trust, knowledge of one another and shared interests… On the one hand social networking has all the potential to accelerate the way humans form bonds and develop friendships, on the other it is so wide open for abuse it’s frightening!

My husband doesn’t do social networking (yet! He didn’t ‘do’ mobile phones until about 2008!) and doesn’t suffer for it, he is still happy to actually talk to people face to face or on the telephone (oh that’s what those little smart boxes are we all carry!) whereas I never have time for that nonsense and arrange what I call my ‘real life’ though a range of tweets, direct messages and status updates. I’m going to make a mental note to revisit this post each year to see how things have developed!

As always I would love to know your thoughts?

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10 on Tuesday 7th February

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1. I have no real idea what 10 on Tuesday is meant to be but I enjoy some other blogs that do it, so I’m going to give it a go, at the very least it should ensure I post at least once a week!

2. I confess that my attempts to be a culinary queen for my children are failing miserably, they had chocolate spread on toast for their lunch today… I balanced it out with some melon and cheese so that’s ok? Isn’t it?

3. I am wearing yesterday’s clothes today, our washing machine has been broken for a week and isn’t being fixed until tomorrow, I’ve been sending laundry to the mother in law but put the children’s and husbands clothes first but I am now dangerously close to running out of underwear if the man can’t fix it tomorrow!

4. I had to wrestle my son to the ground and get him in a floor tackle to trim his nails today, am I the only one that has to endure this and the 10 minute tantrum that follows? It’s unbearable but then so are his talons so there comes a point when it must be done!

5. I am still I’ll! I finished my antibiotics yesterday following flu, bronchitis and a chest infection and the wisdom tooth related gum infection but I still have a permanent sore throat, cough and aching ribs, I am bored of feeling rubbish, even the Manuka honey seems to have stopped helping!

6. We poisoned the neighbours cat today! It walked across the wet bitumen paint that is forming the damp proof course for our new porch, then it walked into its house, across their beautiful wooden floor and kicked its paws. It’s not a very nice cat, ours is much lovelier but I do hope it’s ok and that they manage to get the paint of their floor!

7. Can somebody please tell the other school mums not to park their cars outside my house to walk their kids to school, I really don’t want to have to wade through a gaggle of mums and unruly 7 year olds in order to take mine to preschool! I would say something myself but they know where I live!

8. My 3 year old now helps my husband to put the 1 year old to bed when I’m at work in the evening, apparently she strokes his head and sings to him whilst daddy feeds him his bottle, then she tucks him in! How cute is that?

9. I think I drink too much tea, 5 cups today, big ones, how much tea is too much? I have no idea but I certainly went to the toilet a lot today!

10. I did it, my first 10 on Tuesday! How did it go?

I just want to be alone!… The selfish cry of the tired Mummy

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The kids are at the grandparents for the night, the husband and I have been for a meal and a movie, my goodness it feels good!

I adore my children, I love that they are tactile and want to be cuddled and tickled and kissed and squeezed, I love that they want to brush my hair, stand on my head and nibble my toes but sometimes, especially this time of year when we are all cooped up in the house because of the wet and cold outside, sometimes I really, really, really want to be left alone!

I have started using the phrase ‘personal space’ with my nearly 4 year old, I cringe whenever I say it but haven’t a clue what else to say! She is still in the stage of believing the world exists to amuse her and we are all merely entertainers. She wants to do everything WITH someone and not alone! This includes going to the toilet, eating and playing. Her brother at just under 2 is still in the stage of being sensitive to the world around him and therefore wanting to be carried around it when it displeases him, he is teething, so at the moment this is often!

When my husband comes home from work tired from spending the day with an office full of people that barely look at one another let alone touch, he would like for me to be tactile with him… I try but to be brutally honest , once the kids are in bed… I just want to be alone for a bit!

Don’t get me wrong, I love my husbands company and the kids too but I have always been one of those people happy with my own company, I don’t get to see much of myself at the moment! Between 2 jobs, 2 children, the chores, the cooking, the cleaning, the committee, the school runs, the visits with family and friends, there really isn’t any time to be alone. I know I’d moan if I was but if I could just be guaranteed 20 minutes of pure alone time each day….well what I could do with that time!

Is it just me or does anyone else just want to be alone sometimes?

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I want to teach you something important…

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I read an article on the guardian website today, it was called Top 5 regrets of the dying and to say it moved me would be too simple an explanation, it may, in fact I think it has, changed my life… At least a little bit! Before I prattle on please, please, please take time to read it yourselves!

One of the things that struck me hard and fast was that ALL the men regretted working so hard. Now I have been very blessed in the last 2 years, a twist of fate meant that I had the opportunity to leave an 11 banking career and start the photography business I had dreamt of for so long. My redundancy aside it would not have been possible without the total support of my husband. What worries me however is that he now remains in job that may pay well, be reasonable hours and not far from home, but does nothing towards allowing him to be the exciting, interesting, funny, energetic and wonderful man that I know him as.

As my children grow and get asked that dreadful question “what do you want to be when you grow up” I wonder how I will guide them… I don’t want them to choose one job, one career, one thing to be for ever. I want them to know that they can try lots of different things, that life is hopefully long enough for them to find a balance between a steady and secure income and spending their working time wisely in an environment that lets them be who they are and not what some company profile wants them to be!

Did you read the article above yet? If you got this far and didn’t then do it now, it truly is life changing, if you allow it to be!