Thursday, November 28, 2013

It's great to be eight

In less than one hour, my big boy Tony will be eight. While we were looking through some of his photos for his baptism program, we came across a few from when he had a head full or curls. I forget his hair used to be like that. 

When he was a baby, I thought I could never forget any detail about him. He was our world. I think we literally spent hours every day just studying every one of his features. 

 But it's as if I looked away for a second, and all of a sudden we are here with an eight year old! 

It's quite incredible to be able to witness a human being grow before your very eyes. I love the person Tony is becoming. 

He is smart, and kind, and funny. He is a bit shy upon meeting someone, but then makes friends very easily. When he is excited, it shows on his whole body - he just can't contain himself. He is a big believer in doing the right thing and will stand up for his convictions, even if it means standing alone. 

He makes our family complete. 

Tony woke up early this morning excited as it was his 'birthday eve'. He jumped into bed next to me and we planned what colour cookies he would take to school on his birthday.  I asked if his class sings 'Happy Birthday' when it's someone's birthday. He said they did, and went on to say;

"Yeah, and they do the sausage part too".

Obviously I said;


To which he replied;

"You know, at the end if the 'Happy Birthday' song, there is the sausage bit that people sing sometimes?"

My blank expression inspired him to sing it for me (with a very serious face);

"For he's a jolly good fellow, 
For he's a jolly good fellow,
For he's a jolly good fellow, 
And sausage on a bus."

It was the perfect start to my day :)

Happy Birthday Tony Bones - we are so proud to call you our son xx

Saturday, November 23, 2013

A parenting win

My two boys have very different personalities. I believe that when it comes to the nature vs nurture debate, it's a little naive to believe it comes down to nature OR nurture. You only have to look at families with more than one child to realise children come with their own personalities. They just arrive that way.
Nurture has an enormous role to play too.  The experiences of a child in their early years of life lay the foundation for how they will view themselves and the world. Their experiences in life, particularly within their immediate family, influence them, but some qualities just seem ingrained. 

Due to how they have been raised, I see similarities in my boys. They laugh at the same jokes and enjoy the same sorts of foods. But I also see so many differences. Tony is quite shy upon first meeting people, and Carter is confident. 
Tony tries to do the right thing and aims to please, whereas Carter marches to the beat of his own drum. They are both such beautiful individuals who we adore. 

The thing is, because they are different, it can at times make me wonder about whether or not my own parenting style suits them. I hope it does. I find we are bombarded with such an enormous range of parenting advice nowadays. Each new trend in parenting seems to contradict last weeks parenting trend. It's confusing!

The crux of what most parents what is for their child to be safe, happy, and loved. 

There are multiple "I love you"s said in our house every day. I have noticed we say it freely, perhaps even without thinking at times, but this doesn't take away from the fact we truly mean it. 

As Carter left my bedroom a few days ago, without thinking I said;

"Thanks Tarts. I love you."

To which he replied;

"I know Mum. I always know that."

It was just a casual remark to him, but days have passed and I realise now the importance of his comment. He knows he is loved. I may not always feel like the best parent, but this is one area I feel like we have done something right. 

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Just fine

Earlier this week, I was able to catch up with a good friend of mine that I haven't seen for a while.  She is someone who you don't have to know well to like her a lot. If the truth be told, I was somewhat intimidated by her when I first met her. She is so beautiful and bubbly and a fantastic mother. She has qualities I admire. Upon getting to know her, I learned how kind and compassionate she is.  

I haven't had much of a social life lately as my back limits my activity. I'm ok with this most of the time as I want to be able to care for my family and reserve my energy to be able to do that.
However, being able to spend time with my friend reminded me how much I missed her. Being able to catch up with her and chat helped me remember something that I needed to be reminded of.

I believe that we lived with God before we came to earth. I also believe that is where we will return when we die. I know not everyone shares my beliefs, but hopefully if you know me, you know I am a Christian so this likely won't surprise you.

I believe that we were excited to come to earth and that like an earthly father would before saying farewell to their child going on a long journey, we had a "chat" with our Heavenly Father. I can't say for certain, but I think He would have told us about some of the challenges we would face in the world. I think for me, it would have been my physical challenges and the disappointment at not being able to function as I would like that would have been part of that conversation. 
I feel that I would have said something on the lines of;

"It's ok, I know it will be difficult but I can do it.  Don't worry about me, I will be just fine."

Some days I don't feel "just fine" and I really needed to be reminded of my beliefs that the challenges I face are temporary - they will only affect me in mortality. 

Since our visit, I feel more at peace. She won't know how thankful I am to her for making time to hang out with me. I am grateful for a good friend who let me talk her ear off so I could remind myself that provided I do all I am capable of, I will be "just fine".  

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Tarts and Bones

I have a snoring little Carter next to me. He wasn't feeling well and wanted to sleep next to me. He asked so nicely that it wasn't possible to say "no ".

In the next room Tony is lying in Carter's bed playing a game.  Today he came to me and discussed some things of a sensitive nature with me. It was so sweet and I felt so grateful that he felt that he could come to me and talk about it in such a mature manner. It wasn't anything major at all, but it was important enough to him.

As I am writing, Carter has flopped his arm over me. He is actually pretty warm despite having had Neurofen, but I don't want to move him as he looks so darn cute! 

People always tell you you won't believe how much love you have til you have children. I think you can surprise yourself with how much you can love anyone/anything, whether it be a relationship, a pet, a friend etc, but I also understand the child thing. 

I'm not a big big crier, but there is something about watching your child that can bring tears to my eyes. I don't even know why!! They aren't happy tears, or sad tears, they are tears that just come from nowhere.  It's like you are filled with emotion that just has to get out somehow...and it seems the eyes are a good place.

I often think about what it is about your own child  that brings such strong emotions.  They are a lot of work and can be very demanding at times, but there is nothing I wouldn't do for my boys.  

It's like commencing a project. You take it on not entirely sure of the outcome, but go for it anyway. The project of having a child takes all your blood, sweat, and tears and quite honestly, it will never be finished.  But throughout the process, you get to stand back (or in my case lie next to) and marvel at what your work has accomplished.  When you are working at it day after day, you are sometimes too close to really appreciate how much work has been put in and how far your project has come, but now and again (when your project is asleep and can't run way from you), you get to see the big picture coming together. 

I think this is the overwhelming feeling that comes over me.  

The connection with your child is unexplainable really, but how could you not feel an amazing bond to something that holds a piece of you.