The Positivity Files Are Dead

20130813-125156.jpgArtwork By Niamh

I’ve been thinking for a while about my 50th post and what it should be about. It just seems like such a milestone and something to be proud of. And I am proud, so very proud of myself, for getting to the big 5-0. So I decided that this post should be about me. Not me the mother, me the wife, me the teacher, me the whatever else. Just me, stripped bear, the real me.

I came to this decision after having a revelation. A revelation about The Positivity Files. I was finding them so hard to write, to keep track of things, to make time for writing them. It’s not that I don’t feel positive or have really great things happen, big and small, every day, because I do. So why was I having so much trouble? Why couldn’t I write these posts? Why was I avoiding them?

It took a while but I think I have figured it out. It’s a little complicated cause that’s how I roll. At the start of the year in this post here I set myself a word for the year, instead of a New Years Resolution. That word was positivity. I chose that word because I felt like I was being very negative at the time. However on looking back I am unsure if it was me thinking I was too negative or if it was people around me telling me I was being too negative. And that’s where my problem begins.

I think it’s ok to share negative thoughts and experiences. I think it’s ok to recognise negative things are happening and express that. I think it’s ok to feel negative when things aren’t going your way. It’s not that I don’t recognise or enjoy the positive things, I do, but I also know that there are crap things that happen. I truly believe that to enjoy and experience the positive you have to allow yourself to experience the negative. Without sadness there is no happiness.

Then there is the fact that since setting myself that word I truly believe the universe has been testing me. Trying to see how committed I am to this word. There are some things that have happened this year that have been truly shit. At one stage I felt like a whole heap of shit was being shovelled on top of me and burying me underneath it. I also felt like I wasn’t allowed to say this because, after all, I’m too negative. That was a bad decision and actually lead me to experiencing more negativity, in the form of guilt and pain. Not only was I going through a crap time I was making myself wrong for feeling like it was crap. Dear Universe, my commitment is wafer thin, perhaps non-existent. Thank you for showing me this.

Now don’t get me wrong, there are some people out there who can turn every negative into a positive, who can see the bright side of things, and who truly believe just by thinking positive things will be so. I am envious of them but I have also realised that is not me. By trying to force myself into being someone I am not, by making myself wrong whenever I did feel or think negatively, I was making myself feel worse.

So the dilemma. I could continue the positivity files and create another set of negativity files, but that didn’t feel right either. I could just keep trying with the positivity files but in all honesty I think they are boring and too airy fairy for me. It isn’t something I would personally chose to read so why would I continue writing them? I don’t want to seek out the positive or negative, I just want to experience life, in all it’s forms and with whatever it sends my way. I don’t want to feel wrong for experiencing it my way, or for sharing how I feel.

I have made a promise to myself. I am just going to be me. If I am unhappy with something about myself I will ask myself why. Is it because I feel that way, I think I should feel that way, or others are making me feel that way? Only the first answer is good enough for me to make changes. Otherwise those changes are just going to make me feel worse. I am me and I like who I am. I don’t want to be what everyone else (or anyone else) wants me to be. Well enough so that I am going to work on making sure I am acting and being a way that is what I think is right, that feels right for me.

Have you had any big revelations lately? Do you act in certain ways because you feel it is expected of you but not who you are? Have you overcome this? If yes please share how 🙂

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The Positivity Files 4

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Artwork by Niamh

Sorry about the month-long wait on this one. It’s not that I didn’t have anything positive happen over the last month, I was just flat out living life with 3 beautiful terrors children. I also didn’t write down things throughout the weeks to make my life easy. This week back to jotting down positive happenings at the end of every night.

* Sleep, blessed, wonderful, amazing sleep. I didn’t realise how truly tired I was until I started getting more sleep. Harper and Declan are steaming towards a full nights sleep with the one overnight feed getting ever closer to a reasonable (for me) morning wake up.

* A change in routine. Because of the later night feeds the twins now wake up around 8, or I get them up. This means feeds are around 12, 4 and 8. This is perfect for us as Hubby, Niamh and I can eat dinner as soon as hubby gets home at 6:30 then move straight into the nighttime routine. Much better than trying to juggle dinner, hungry loud babies who need a bath / shower and a feed.

* Being able to get dinner on the table by 6:30 every night. Seriously I deserve an award for this! First of all I hate cooking, like really hate it. Secondly, the twins go through witching hour (or hours as the case may be) during this time. Getting a half decent meal on the table, that everyone will eat (fussy hubby more so than fussy Niamh) is a miracle!!!

* Our baby swings are the best thing ever. Witching hour is manageable now we have put them together and the correct batteries installed. While Declan is swung to peace, if not sleep, Harper can have a nap and I can get things (like the above mentioned dinner) done.

* Online shopping. This was a first for me. I have never, ever, ever bought clothes online. I am the sort of person who walks into a shop, tries on a million things, and then may walk out with something that looks half decent. Sometimes. This week I got brave and with the help of a measuring tape and a size guide ordered some clothes.

* Bravery. OK I know I’m blowing my own trumpet here but I feel like I was really brave and want to share. Some of the clothes I bought online were too big (another positive yay me) and I needed to return them. So when Niamh was at Kinder for her full day Friday I toddled off to the closest store and returned them. While there I partook in a little shopping, fed the twins (that was my biggest fear, how to feed them both while out) and had a spot of lunch. I felt like superwoman afterward and so, well, proud of myself.

* The resilience of children. This month we had a traumatic event occur when Niamh’s dog Paris, a tiny little teacup chihuahua, somehow got into the yard behind us and was killed by the big aggressive dogs that live there. Although all of this has been absolutely horrible, Niamh is slowly remembering the good things about Paris and forgetting the details of what happened. Resilience and a short memory span for the negatives are great things and I’m glad Niamh has both.

* Nutella pancakes. Do I need to elaborate? Did I mention they also had sliced banana. Going out for breakfast is just the best. When your bestie and her hubby comes too, divine.

* Having a girls day out. For Mothers Day hubby and my kidlets got me a reasonable chunk of voucher from my favourite fat ladies store. To spend said voucher I was also entitled to a day off. After above-mentioned heaven of a breakfast there was a massage at the local day spa and a butt load of shopping. I came away with some gorgeous clothes and a better self-esteem after finding some lovely things that made me feel great.

* Online sales, oh how I love thee. After becoming brave enough to shop online, and after I had a better idea of what size I was at my favourite stores (smaller than I thought and the guide told me yay) I had the confidence to buy some gorgeous clothes at quite reduced prices. My favourite piece by far is a tunic / dress in a rainbow print that is just divine. When I get the opportunity to wear it I promise to share.

* Doctors finally listening, or should that be doctors who know what they’re talking about. I finally saw a doctor who took my concerns seriously and she started the ball rolling with tests. After a couple of confusing face swelling incidents she sent me straight to a paediatrician. Turns out he is the best and she went above and beyond to get me in immediately. This means Declan and Harper’s cows milk allergies were diagnosed before Declan’s allergic reactions progressed to anaphylaxis. It also means we have now started down the road of dealing with the problems my poor bubbas have been having.

* Trusting myself and my parenting. There are a fee reasons why I began to doubt myself and my ability to parent Niamh for her best outcomes. The reasons are not important. What is important is that somebody close to me gave me a mental shaking and helped me get my parenting mojo back. It’s amazing how quickly things I improved between Niamh and I once I started parenting my way and from a knowledge of who she is and what she needed.

* Kinder is amazing for many reasons. The socialisation for Niamh with different children, the learning she has been so enthusiastic to partake in, the sharing of new things when she gets home, the positive experiences she is having outside of home. They are all setting her in good stead for a positive start to her primary schooling next year. And don’t judge me but sometimes that break when Niamh is at Kinder is exactly what need too.

* My mum has been dropping in at least once a week just to check in and make sure I am doing OK. It’s nice to know someone is looking out for me. Even more important is that there have been a couple of times this past month when I have had to call her for assistance and she has come straight over. Help with Niamh when Paris was killed, to look after the kids while I went to the chemist so I didn’t need to take them out in the rain, and most recently to stay with the girls so Hubby could come for a late night dash to the hospital with Declan.

* Sisterly love. I may not see my sister as much as I would like but I know she truly loves me and my children. She even likes my hubby lol. When we do get to see each other it’s so nice. The chats, the relaxing, the understanding. Now if only our kids would be nicer to each other and act like friends instead of siblings.

* My besties. I am lucky to have a couple of really close friends who support me so very much. One in particular has lately become my life saver, knowing exactly what I need and when. Sometimes I think she has ESP!! I’m brewing up a post about her that you should see in the near future.

* Actually on the topic of friends, I am lucky to have some amazing friends who understand what I am going through even if they haven’t experienced it themselves.

* Currently I am having a love affair with boots. So much so that I have gone a little crazy in my acquiring of said boots. In the space of two weeks I bought a pair of black knee highs, a pair of black rouched calf boots, and two pairs of true ankle boots (black and camel) because they were so damn comfy.

* After my shopping spree, both online and out in the real world, I have begun to feel good in the clothes I wear. This is a very new thing for me. It’s actually rare that I feel happy with what I wear or how I look. But after some thinking about what I really like, how I want to look, what makes me uncomfortable and what works on my body, I have started to build a wardrobe of things I love.

* Since changing formulas and having the twins diagnosed with cows milk allergy things are slowly improving. They are no longer congested, there have been no face seeking or throat hoarsening incidents, no more diarrhoea and nappies that no longer smell as if they are filled with road kill.

* Love and hugs from Niamh. Although we have our ups and downs there is nothing that beats the random “I love you mummy’s” and hugs and kisses that I get blessed with on a regular basis. Heart melting stuff.

* Getting brave and considering the future is something that is slowly occurring. Lately I have felt as if our family needs a big change. I’m not sure what this change will be but I am opening myself up to embracing it when it appears in our lives and not running from it in fear. Whatever it is I know something is coming and I am feeling more prepared for it each day.

* I am blessed to have a hubby who makes sure I take time out for me. A shopping trip, a couple of hours at the hairdressers, a massage, a chance to sneak out for a cuppa with a girlfriend, time to sleep. All of these things recharge my batteries and allow me to be a better version of myself.

* I think I may have mentioned this before, but I hate cooking. It’s just not something I enjoy am or very talented at. My repertoire includes things that are quick and easy to cook and prepare, which is probably a very good thing now the twins are here. So imagine my delight in myself and my cooking prowess when I created delicious pizza scrolls in the slow cooker!!

* Kids birthday parties. Seriously they are just so much fun for everyone. The kids have a ball, parenting is stress free (unless tears result, which occurs more often than you think) and the adults get a chance to catch up and gossip. Did I mention birthday cake? And even better, when you leave, lolly bags! Win win all around.

* Time alone with Niamh. We’ve had birthday parties and a visit with my bestie that included all of us having a “coffee tea”. Poor Niamh has the concept right, we just must say cuppa tea too fast for her dear little ears lol. Or perhaps it’s because you ask “do you want a coffee or tea”. Either way I love my “coffee teas” with my boofa.

* Cheeky, cheeky bubba smiles from Harper just melt my heart and make me laugh out loud no matter how inappropriate that laughter may be. She just has a way of grinning at you all open mouthed and gummy, her head turned and slightly tilted to the side, and usually gripping her hands reminiscent of Mr Burns. It’s really hard not to respond at 4am when she should be hurrying up with her bottle and going straight back to bed.

* Declan’s giggles are one of the best sounds on Earth. Even though my little man goes through so much pain on any given day, he can find something to giggle about and melt my heart. He loves his kisses and will chuckle when I bounce him and kiss his face all over. Such a beautiful little boy.

* And I left the best for last. For the last week the twins have slept through the night. As in, they have gone down between 8 and 8:30 at night, and not woken until 7am. It has been wonderful. Now if only I could sleep through the night instead of getting up to check on them, to see if their sounds are because they need me, and of course to pee. Hopefully this is a trend that will continue from now on!!

I’ve decided I would like to make an addition to my positivity files. Each week I am going to nominate something I am going to commit to doing to increase my positivity, feelings of happiness, or increase my general week being. Each week I will add to a list of things I am doing, not just to remind myself of all I accomplish but also to remember that positivity and happiness are things you work towards.

So today I begin my list I start with something simple. To increase my positivity and happiness I will:
1. Have a shower every day.

This sounds simple but its actually about making time for myself to enjoy a nice, hot, relaxing shower no matter how short the duration. A couple of minutes to myself to enjoy all that a shower has to offer.

What positive things have happened in your life lately? What do you do to increase your well being and feelings of happiness? Any suggestions of things I can eventually add to my list?

The Positivity Files 3

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Artwork by Niamh

20130508-220716.jpg * I had such a wonderful bonding experience with Niamh when I went to her Kinder’s Mothers Day Afternoon Tea. It’s the first time I was able to go to something like this and hubby was wonderful, organising to work from home and stay with the twins so it could just be the two of us. We played doctors, with play dough, sang, danced, painted and drew pictures. I even got to eat chocolate balls she had made!!!

 

 

* FINALLY getting a smile from Declan. Geez that boy made me work hard for the privilege. However I can say mummy got the first one, it was MASSIVE, and all because I gave him a kiss. What mummy doesn’t love that!

20130508-220815.jpg * Creating kick ass play dough snowmen with Miss Niamh, we did an awesome job if I do say so myself!!!!

20130508-221145.jpg * THIS

20130508-221256.jpg * and THIS

20130508-221422.jpg * and THIS

* After a night of pretty much no sleep, a day of tired babies yet again not sleeping, hubby away for work, and feeling like a zombie, it was great to go to mum’s. A delicious dinner I didn’t cook, chocolate pudding for desert, and people other than me to soothe the twins and play with Niamh.

* Sleep, oh blessed sleep. After our Wednesday night of hell the twins decided to increase their night time block of sleep. They now feed at 7pm, go to sleep at around 8pm after their bottle and sleep all the way to 1 or 2am. After a feed they’re usually down until at least 6:30 if not 7am. Lets hope this is a trend that continues and perhaps increases!!!

* FRIDAY. Just all of it. For lots of reasons and none really in particular. It was just a wonderful nothing of a day. Hubby came home from a business trip, I got blessed sleep (more than expected), it was a beautiful day, beautiful friends visited, Niamh was happy. It was great!

* Niamh and the funny things she says increase my happiness every day. My favourite from this week was when we had just pulled up home from Kinder. There was a balding, fairly rotund man working on the excavator that seems permanently parked outside our house (don’t get me started this is a positivity post). As we pull into the driveway Niamh comes out with “OMG I can’t believe this” (I was waiting for “shit” as that’s what it sounded like) in an attitude filled tone. “What’s wrong?” I queried, just a little concerned. “The fat controller’s here” she replied, deadpan. Lets just say she has my sense of humour and we both had to wipe tears of mirth away.

* Saturday night I was feeding Declan his bedtime bottle. Hubby had already taken Harper off to bed. It was just Declan and I in a darkened room, enjoy our time alone, snuggling. When all of a sudden Declan pushed the bottle out of his mouth, stilled, and looked up at me with absolute unconditional love shining out of his eyes. I was spellbound and sat there slowly melting into a puddle of goo.

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20130514-181557.jpg* Mother’s Day. I was thoroughly spoiled. Shopping, my beautiful new teapot and teas, finding the jacket I have been lusting over in my size AND on sale, and a voucher to go shopping for new clothes! Throw in a delicious dinner I didn’t cook and it was perfection!!

 

 

* Maroon 5. OK I know you’re thinking oooooookaaaaaay but the reason is three pronged. One, their music is just awesome, I love the way it makes me feel, and you can just power out their lyrics at the top of your voice and feel kick ass (guess who has just rotated her entire collection back into her cars playlist). Two, uh hello ADAM FRICKEN LEVINE. That man is damn hot, like damn hot. And three, ADAM FRICKEN LEVINE.

20130510-205435.jpg Wouldn’t kick him out of bed if he farted I tell you! Photo was taken as part of the Everyman Charity. Oh and yes, you’re welcome 😉

What wonderful, positive or exciting things happened in your world this week?

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The Positivity Files 2

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Artwork by Niamh

This week I’ve found it’s helped immensely shifting my focus from the negative to the positive. I feel calmer and more accepting of the downs when I can see so many ups in my life!

20130501-174301.jpg * My new car. Now I have room for the two rear facing car seats and Niamh’s booster in the back without being shoved into the steering wheel and the passenger eating glove box!! It’s a cool looking people mover and makes me think of the A Team. I feel bad ass every time I sit in it.

* Harper’s hungry cry is the funniest thing ever. She starts off quiet but every 5 seconds or so it sounds like she is yelling HEY at the top of her lungs. Cracks me up every time!!

* Grocery Shopping Online, my saviour!!! At the moment I’m not supposed to drive (a 30 second kinder drop off doesn’t count I say) and being housebound really makes it hard to get certain things done, like the weekly shop. Thanks to online grocery shopping and delivery I can do it all from my couch. Not only can I see all available items and find the bargains, I can also control my spending thanks to a running tally, and I am not tempted by impulse buys. This will definitely continue even when I can drive (and save me trying to figure out how to manage the twins at the same time).

* Friends who are plumbers (or should I say Hubby’s cricket mates who are plumbers). After Niamh’s discovery of gravity using an outdoor drain pipe and large rocks, and a hefty $1700 plus quote to fix the resulting issues, it was an amazing feeling when said friend came, spent an hour and resolved the issue to a tune of $200. HUGE sigh of relief!!

* Some lovely mums from Kinder invited Niamh and I (and the twins of course) to the local play centre Friday because Kinder was closed for the day. It was nice to get out, make new friends, and enjoy a quick cuppa, all while Niamh burnt off some of her boundless energy.

* The closeness that is achieved when you sit down and actually talk about issues, even when you didn’t know they were there or as big as what they were. There is a lot to be said for actually telling someone how you feel, especially when it’s done in a non-threatening or blaming way.

* The finding of a solution for arsenic hour at the unlikeliest of places. Whilst at my Aunty’s 50th Birthday Party, with music pumping loudly, and whilst in new sleeping bags snuggled in the pram, the twins slept through 5pm to 10pm without any trouble or whimpers from either of them. Needless to say I am now willing to turn my house into a nightclub to get the twins to sleep!!

20130502-094724.jpg * I have begun to burn my candles again. The house smells wonderful and I love the feeling I get from having them releasing their beautiful scents.

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The Positivity Files

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Artwork by Niamh

I have always been an over-sharer, very vocal about what is going on in my life, and some people would say I lack boundaries. I am a big believer in the importance of venting. The release it gives you, the clarity, and a lot of time a new point of view from whoever you are venting to. I’m also not one to hold things back. If I feel or think it, you will probably hear it, unless I think it’s going to lead to massive conflict, then I tend to bite my tongue.

Unfortunately over the last year or so I have noticed my venting increasing and my mind set changing. I have become more negative and jaded. I look at myself and think whinger. It’s not a great realisation or feeling to have. So when Bel over at Life @ No. 2 asked what word we would like to embody our coming year, in lieu of a New Years Resolution, I immediately knew what my word would be. I’m sure you can all guess what it is too…..

POSITIVITY

Unfortunately, looking back at my year so far, especially my blog posts, I know I am missing the mark and have a long way to go.

So I have decided to start The Positivity Files. A dedicated weekly blog where I will detail things from my week that have been good, wonderful, amazing even. Things I am grateful for, that have made my week special, those moments I am truly blessed to have experienced no matter how big or small.

The first instalment follows below:

* I am truly blessed to be a mother of twins. I was terrified of the thought throughout my entire pregnancy and yet now it is a reality I look back and shake my head. I don’t believe I can truly explain how it feels to be a mother of twins. It’s like the most beautiful feelings of being a mother times a million. I feel blessed to have two beautiful babies to love. Two newborns with their beautiful newborn smell, delicious hugs and small moments that only newborns can share with you. The heart swelling emotions I feel when I watch them, even now at a month old, interact and seek one another out. I really don’t think anyone but another mother of twins could understand that what I thought would be a terrifying ordeal is one of my life’s most beautiful blessings.

* I have an amazing husband (even if he does give me the shits now and then). He is such a hands on father, always willing to get in there and do whatever needs to be done. Nappy changes, feeds, taking over at 4:30am when I just can’t soothe a crying or unsettled baby for a second more, letting me sleep in when I am exhausted, and a million more things. He is a wonderful husband but also an amazing father. Niamh idolises him and loves the special things they do together. I just know Harper and Declan will feel exactly the same way.

* I am lucky to have some very close and supportive friends who accept me for who I am. This is actually rarer then you may think. I have a couple of friends who, when I am around them, I can just be me. I don’t have to watch what I say or do, they know who I am, my eccentricities and quirks and they accept them and like me anyway lol. I know there are times when I offend others, never by intent, but just through my passionate nature. Never more than the last couple of weeks have I been so grateful for these people, who I am sure know who they are.

* 4 year old humour, there is nothing like it in the world. The way Niamh can just laugh and experience joy with her whole being. You can’t help but laugh along, even if its just at witnessing her all out mirth. The way she will tell me a story about something funny, or witness something funny alongside me, and with pure enjoyment and laughter look up at me and say “that’s so funny is it mummy”. Not a question as it may sound but just a statement (we’re still learning about contractions)

* Sunny, rain-free days. In all honesty I hate winter more than any other season. Rainy, overcast days just get me down. There is something so depressing about them. So I am happy we have seen the sun so much this week. Not only does it lift my spirits but it also means Niamh can go outside and run around, burning off some of that boundless energy she has!

* Kinder, oh Kinder, how I love thee. First of all don’t judge me for my heartfelt joy of Niamh-free moments. I love my daughter but we both need a break now and then. Kinder allows me to nap, clean or (for now while the twins are so little) take time to do something just for me. Later on Kinder will allow for time with just the twins. Niamh also loves Kinder so much and can not wait to go each week. So all-in-all it’s a win-win situation!

What positive things have happened in your life this week, big or small?