If you were to grow up being placed on some sort of pedestal, being admired and photographed for no reason other than existing, wouldn't you have a warped sense of your place in the world? It's no wonder the term used here so often is "expat brats".
There's definitely been a noticeable change for good and my children have got a better parent. I want this, not just for them, I want this for me. For the best me that I can be - because I really like her a lot more than the fractious, snappy wine-hag of the past few years.
And that it is the beauty of cartoons; the characters don't age. They transport you back to the time when you sat on the orange-patterned rug by the fire and stared up at the square box with the fuzzy picture, they remain on screen as they did in our memories.
The last few days have been the hardest I think I have had for a long time. My brain feels like it's on auto pilot, it's on a non stop rollercoaster and I can't see the end. I am screaming on the inside while trying to look normal for my children, family and friends. So sorry but here is as good as it gets, my brain is fried, here are my ramblings.....
So here's to the next 1,180 days. I've come too far to let the side down now. Whatever stage of parenthood you are at, it's never too late to up your game. And I know your kids will thank you...
Never underestimate the impact just being there listening to someone can make a huge difference... Sometimes we all need to feel there is someone there to support us in a time of vulnerability without fear of judgement or stigma.
You're doing your best to raise well-balanced, healthy, happy children, but sometimes you wonder, ''am I really helping them?''. Good parents do exactly this; they wonder, question, reflect upon their actions and behaviours, acknowledge their mistakes and learn from them.
A blended family includes children from a previous marriage of one spouse or both, and being a parent or step parent in these circumstances presents its own unique challenges and rewards. While you don't necessarily have to rewrite your parenting rules in blended family, it is important to quickly establish a clear role for the new step parents.
The days will come and they will go, some days will be tough. When baby is ill, when your friends that are still on maternity meet up without you, you will feel a sense of loss, but most days will just come and go.
Every parent is a great parent. It isn't fair that education can make parents feel insecure. We need to ensure that we are bridging this gap and looking at viable opportunities that parents can take advantage of.
Friends talk fondly about time spent with their new babies. They complain about sleep-deprivation and 'new parent panic' but there's always warmth and affection in their voices. It makes me wistful. It sometimes makes me sad.
Before the children moved in, lots of parents we know told us that nothing prepares you for parenting. If I'm honest, I listened and nodded but felt slightly smug because I've worked with children for 10 years, so surely that would have prepared me.
The major advantage of SPL is that both parents can choose to take leave off at the same time for a greater period than the initial two weeks paternity leave afforded to fathers, partners and secondary adopters. In theory, the employees themselves can decide how to divide the leave between them and this may be equally.
So my 'find new mum friends' mission commenced. I went to various playgroups but they were full of mums who had met at antenatal classes, and trying to 'get in' with them was more difficult than collapsing a travel cot. Was I not good enough?
It's the third dress up day this half term which - lest we forget - is only 5 weeks long. It's a constant mental toll on the parents who squeeze a work day around their children's schedules and the threat of dropping all the relevant plates is a very real one.
I think this is something that new mums fear especially if they have a previous bout of mental illness. I've spoken to many ladies who have felt this way and some who actually went through postpartum psychosis.