My two best friends are having a baby and I couldn't be more happy for them. I even cried when I saw the first signs of a bump. They are girls and we are boys but we are so similar, maybe that's why we get on so well.
For most of us, we change as people when we become parents. On the whole we grow and become better people. However in the transition period, that change in who we are, our identity, can cause great confusion. Once a confident and independent adult, you begin to question your abilities. Failing it appears, is not an option.
They are also pretty intimidating at first though; walking into a room of strangers, fears of cliques and the fact you are transported back to an irrational school child fear that no one will like you
'You'd be a great Dad!' I get told this often. Yes, I can mess around and play the fool. I'm down with video games and I know what pop star is popping another. I'm guessing that there's a little bit more to actually being a great Dad.
Christmas is approaching and so the lists of things to do with kids in your local area are arriving into your awareness - and inbox - thick and fast. Here is my helpful list of things *not* to do at Christmas with the little ones. That's right- here is your permission to sink back into the sofa, unwrap another Quality Street and pour yourself another glass of wine.
Physically I was able to try and pull on those times of rest, but my mind (as will be the story of my bloody life and no doubt this blog) kept overflowing with endless lists of what once again, I should and could be doing with my 'free time' (LOL)
I am a Musician, a Wife, a Mum an artist, writer, presenter, racing driver, educator, daughter, sister and friend. Pausing to think of these titles that make up Yolanda Brown gave me a strange feeling... was it stress, anxiety? How do I do it? Am I ok doing it?
Consider this scenario: an anxious new mum, sat in those seats in the corner trying to settle her 6 week old colicky baby. Whilst half the waiting room coo over this new bundle-of-joy, she is feeling confused and holding back the tears. It may have taken significant courage to actually pick up the phone and book this appointment.
Of course it isn't always easy to find the motivation, and sometimes I feel guilty dragging Sonny away from the warmth of the house and the comfort of his bouncy chair, but this little dude absolutely loves being outside and I can't deny him that pleasure just because it's got a bit chillier and I'm feeling lazy.
It's a lot of things to miss about being with M all the time, and I guess it's a kind of grief that I'm experiencing. Mourning my maternity leave. But then, I'm so very grateful, that I have those things to miss. That I have been blessed with the opportunity to be a mummy, and to spend 9 blissful months with my girl.
We have been so blessed with both of our boys being super sleepers, although I did have my fair share of sleepless nights with my eldest boy Maximus, especially around teething time and when he was feeling poorly. Admittedly, Max was sleeping through from about 12 weeks but he still had a bottle and his nappy changed during the night.
My son on the other hand is new territory. Not completely uncharted, but definitely new. At the moment, he is a typical toddler by all intents and purposes. He does toddler things. He runs around, he throws his plastic cutlery on the floor, he seems to have permanently sticky hands, he laughs a lot, he cries a lot, and he finds un-silly things very silly.
But what about when life is not fun? What about when you look around you, and everyone else seems to be coping with the ups and downs of the everyday, but you find yourself feeling alone and struggling to manage?
This probably seems more like a rant than a reasonable, balanced blog post. I've tried to keep it from becoming a stream of consciousness, but it's hard when you're angry. Three years ago, having people tell me how lucky I am was probably the least useful piece of advice I ever received.
It wasn't just the rendition of 'Such Love' that pulled at my heartstrings, or the way my four year-old son bravely stood up to read his lines so clearly (even if I do say so myself). It wasn't even the 'assorted-crayon-song' about how we're all different, but oh so special (it was full on cheese by this point).
If we're to cope with and survive this stage of parenting (however long it lasts - please give me hope parents of four year olds) I feel like it is essential that we understand the tantrum process.