Life Lesson For Mommy #52:

Earthquake Ready

This is for my friends and family and anyone who experienced the Earthquake last night in BC. I have always been prepared for disasters that are relevant to my area and the ‘big one’ is what I prepared for.

The Canadian government (Harpers Gov’t) had basically said that you are on your own and they will be only focusing on the most devastated areas first, which is the Downtown Vancouver and Richmond areas. If you are outside of that area like in Burnaby, Surrey and further out, you will get help last and be the last to get proper supplies, so make sure you are ready.

I think when I first posted this list people probably thought ‘meh’ and didn’t think twice about it, but I think now that they have experienced what a small earthquake feels like, it is scary and very real. It probably reminded them that they are not ready and had this been the epic one that is scientifically being expected, it could have been bad.

So here is the comprehensive list, it has almost everything you can freaking imagine but tailor it to your family. Make your own list based off this list and then shop and order what you need. Remember the gov’t of Canada says 72 hours where as most earthquake sites and prepper sites say nope with the kind of damage that is being expected be prepared for 3 months. If you are in the Tsunami zone, make proper arrangements for that as well. Don’t be living in the delusion that you will have the normal necessasities- like toilets and running water, you might not have those if power stations and water reserves are damaged. You might be thinking it’s not going to be that bad – we ll scientists would argue with you saying no it’s over due like by 100 years, it’s going to be bad and very bad.

Also keep in mind, if you have children in school make sure to talk to their teachers about teaching kids about earthquake safety. And make a plan about how you are going to meet your kids, if you are going to get them etc Where to meet, how to meet, who is going to get who etc etc should be part of this earthquake preparedness.

If I have missed something please comment so that I can add it!
So here is the list:

Copy and paste this into a document, I’m sorry I haven’t paid proper attention in building this site (I got kids dammit) but I will try to make it updated so that you can just print it. But for now, copy paste, and be prepared.

Good Luck 😀

Earthquake and Tsunami List

For the house – BugOut Bag: (this is if you need to grab your bags and run! Some people in the Katrina floods had to flee their home on a moments notice, those who had these things could fend for themselves and not rely completely on aid. Standing in hours of line ups etc is not easy with kids. Consider making one.)

2 backpacks and one duffel bag (this covers a family of 4)

  1. 2 flannel blankets
  2. small pot
  3. small pan
  4. dried foods (granola bars, nuts mix)
  5. Medical kit (including adult thermometer, cotton balls, antibiotic pads, band-aids etc)
  6. matches or fire starters
  7. 3 large garbage bags (the black ones)
  8. advil & tylenol +(baby medicine)
  9. penicillin (if someone is injured this could safe your life)
  10. benedryl (baby)
  11. lotion (baby)
  12. emergency prescription glasses (if you wear them)
  13. Water purifier canteen or water tablets and water bottles
  14. 2shirts, 2sweaters,2 comfortable pants, 2runners,underwear, socks for each person (parents and kids)
  15. flash lights
  16. batteries
  17. diapers & wipes
  18. cooking set (it’s a small set that can be bought from any camping store)
  19. 2 manual can openers
  20. work gloves
  21. hammer & nails
  22. bungee cord
  23. 3 space blankets
  24. compass – no joke it’s recommended so do it
  25. 2 small mirrors
  26. Disinfecting wipes & GEL
  27. Potty/sanitation tablets/wipes – found in camping store
  28. small scissors
  29. tweezers & nail cutters – trust me you need this

This seems like a lot, but it’s mostly small items or foldable items and fits well between all 3 bags. Distribute to fit.

 

STABLE KIT (for the house, leave in shed easily accessible closet, this is the major portion of your kit and should last 3 months)

(Food & Shelter)

  1. Non perishable foods- canned meat, canned goods, boxed foods
  2. Rice and flour in small air tight containers
  3. Water bottles (not expired) and water purifiers
  4. Filtering system for water or water bottles (Camping stores have tablets)
  5. Generator (optional)
  6. propane tank & small BBQ set (should be full for emergency)
  7. inflatable boat
  8. 2 sleeping bags
  9. batteries
  10. small pot
  11. small pan
  12. prescription medicine
  13. vegetable or canola oil (for cooking and fire) do not stock olive oil and sensitive oils.
  14. ER prescription glasses
  15. advil & tylenol (kids too)
  16. penicillin
  17. benedryl (kids baby)
  18. 1 life vests (+child)
  19. Toilet paper double wrap with plastic wrap
  20. squirtable bottle for cleaning after washroom
  21. woodplanks- scrapes in shed
  22. 5 garbage bags
  23. 2 small shovel (flat head and pointed)
  24. 2 big knives
  25. baseball bat
  26. matches and fire starters
  27. 2 thin but warm blankets
  28. hot water bottle
  29. diapers & wipes
  30. baby rash gel
  31. baby lotion & your lotion
  32. Vaseline & cotton balls (fire starters)
  33. Aloe gel or Polysporin
  34. candles & candle holders
  35. camping tent (4 people)
  36. portable stove top with small propane
  37. 2 manual can openers
  38. rubbing alcohol
  39. 2 vodka and red wine bottles
  40. work gloves
  41. hammer and nails
  42. crowbar
  43. tweezers & nail cutter
  44. compass
  45. bungee rope
  46. Potty/Sanitation tablets/bags/ wipes- if the toilets don’t run you have to make sure you are still hygienic to avoid bacterial infections and poisonous situation.
  47. ax
  48. filled cherry gas can (use and refill every 3 months)

 

(medical aid portion for stable kit)

  1. non latex gloves
  2. sterile gauges and bandages
  3. antibiotic wipes and antibacterial
  4. burn ointment
  5. medical tape (adhesive bandages)
  6. thermometer
  7. scissors
  8. tweezers
  9. diarrhea medication
  10. Tums & anti acid
  11. coco water tetra packs
  12. female pads (large and small sizes)
  13. soap in a bottle and shampoo
  14. 3 large towels
  15. insect spray
  16. insect repellent candles
  17. cotton buds
  18. copes of birth certificates, citizen ship cards, SIN #, carecard #’s
  19. Take out $1000 cash small denominations
  20. record of bank acct #’s, local fire stations/ help stations#’s, stock holdings, savings acct, deposit box list

 

Bug out kit For Car, prepare as if you will have to travel in car

  1. 2 blankets
  2. flashlights
  3. water bottles or water treatment tablets
  4. canned food or dried food
  5. 2 manual can openers
  6. diapers & wipes
  7. 1 sleeping bag or large blanket, Emergency silver blanket
  8. matches/ fire starters
  9. small pan with lid
  10. advil & tylenol (kids too)
  11. your lotion, baby lotion
  12. vaseline & cotton balls
  13. sweater,pants, socks, shoes, underwear, baby clothes (1 set each member)
  14. batteries
  15. small cherry can gas (empty for easy filling)
  16. paper and pens
  17. toilet paper
  18. puffs tissue
  19. compass
  20. rope
  21. 1 car charger
  22. crowbar
  23. whistle
  24. antibacterial wipes
  25. rubbing alcohol & bandaids
  26. Compact First aid kit

Things to keep in mind.
Bundle your clothes in plastic bags or large zip lock bags to keep them dry and safe.

Try to store all your medical stuff together wherever possible, but if it doesn’t fit all in your bug out bags, spread them out but keep a laminated or ‘taped’ list in a pocket of the bag so you know where things are.

Make a Safety check list for yourself, so you know the ‘unsafe’ areas of your home and ‘safe’ area’s of your home. Like large windows and places where things are packed high, you do not want to be near these areas or clear them out of the path to your exist.

I didn’t include cell phones and chargers in this list because you’re going to lose power on these pretty quickly. But make sure you have extra cell phone batteries and chargers in your car and bug out bag. Should you need to go to a shelter you at least have the option of charging your phone or swapping batteries to use for emergencies.

If your house is is considered safe- if it hasn’t been destroyed or in danger of fire or walls or ceiling fallings; use your ‘Stable home’ kit after you use the supplies at home. If you are in a part of the house that is safe and can’t use the unsafe portions, then use your stable home kit- for when you can’t access heat, cook food, or use the tap water or toilets.

You bug out bag should be taken with you if you are going to use your car even if you already have a bug out car kit. The more supplies you have the longer you can manage on your own without help from crowded and dangerous shelters. Be sure to always park in a large open field area to cook outdoors or use the washroom.

If someone is injured even if it’s a small wound you should still seek medical help at a Emergency station or the hospital. Most cities are equipped and have plans in order to turn schools and stadiums into medical stations and shelters. Please make sure to keep a copy of this list in your bug out bag.

You should also print and put into your bug out bags a copy of basic medical issues and how to treat them. Small burns, small wounds, cuts, bleeding and if you can take a course on emergency medical aid. It can save your life or someone else’s.

If you have small children, please have a talk about what an earthquake is, how we plan and deal with one and arm them with knowledge of where things are and where they are supposed to go. Telling them where they are and how and when you will get to them or who will get to them will help ease their tensions and fear during an earthquake.

Destress! The last thing you want to do is make this an epic nightmare for yourself. Yes it is a serious thing and we do need to prepare properly- this isn’t a joke, we have seen thousands of people suffer greatly during natural disasters and earthquakes are one of the most severe forms. So do treat it seriously. But don’t kill yourself over it. The better you plan and prepare, the more relaxed and at ease you will be.

Life Lessons For Mommy #51:

My Mental Fat

Baby Fat After Baby

I lost weight believe it or not during both my pregnancies and not just a little. Almost 30lbs each pregnancy because of the strict gestational diabetes diet. Both my babies came out perfect, and I was slimmer and looked better then when I wasn’t pregnant. It was great- I felt great. But soon I started to pack back on the weight. With both my babies I always picked sleep over anything else. Do I get up to wash dishes or sleep- let’s sleep. Do I fold laundry or sleep- let’s sleep. Do I shower or sleep- let’s sleep. I zzzz ‘d whenever I could, my son is still so demanding (and he’s almost 16 months now). My milk supply not too great and him being colic and rejecting the bottle- it was becoming a little hell for me in the beginning. So I did what I always do under stress and anxiety- I ate.
Sometimes I over ate good stuff like polishing off 5 carrots and 2 apples. And sometimes I ate bad stuff, like stuffing a piece of apple pie into my face and then washing that down with some cookies and the biggest most epic mug of hot chocolate with marshmallows…don’t you judge me dammit.

I did it because I found no comfort in anything else. Everything I love and found peace in was stripped away from me because my time was being consumed day and night by a baby boy that just didn’t know what restraint was, a toddler that needed me suddenly all the time; and pain from a car accident that came back with horrible vengeance after the pregnancy relaxing hormones left my body.

My momma blog took a back seat for 6 months of no updates. My toddler who was craving more attention from me meant I had to cut my nap time and me time out completely. I also had to invest in so much time managing my neck and face pain and trying to stop headaches. I stopped making time to watch comedy which used to be my anxiety killer. I stopped drawing, I stopped writing, I stopped playing the piano, going out, making real meals, I replaced that all with just eating. It was the only thing that I could do while doing something else and it made me feel better. I knew my blood pressure from preeclampsia was bad and for the 3 months after my son was born I struggled to keep calm, to not eat badly and all that went down the drain when I could no longer support a ‘healthy lifestyle’ with everything else going on. Time was not on my side and as a side effect, food filled me. The baby fat wasn’t just on my baby. I was jiggling from all sides but not giggling hilariously about it.

Keeping it Together

When I weighed myself finally after my son turned a year, I realized I had packed back on 17lbs. That’s right, you read that right, I gained back 17lbs in a year, a freaking year. I felt like total garbage, but still couldn’t do anything about. It was easy for people to say things like ‘it was get better’, or ‘don’t worry just schedule better’, or ‘just manage your meals better’, ‘make time for yourself’’, ‘don’t worry, don’t worry, don’t worry’. It felt like no one understood what was happening to me.
What was the tipper in all this was the pain in my neck, shoulders and face. After my car accident 3 years ago, I got ‘bells palsy’ related to stress of the accident. The left side of my face literally stopped working, and had to take steroids and antivirals to get it working again. It was a nightmare and I still have pain to this day when I get tired or stressed. I honestly feel that had that accident never happened, I would be more with it. But it did happen, and now it was becoming mentally and physically insane. But this is what I have to deal with and somehow I have to keep it together.

But I wasn’t keeping it together. I was just eating and eating. Filling my stomach to the point where I felt like throwing up sometimes. I would get nauseous and feel bad about myself and get more stressed out about my blood pressure after I ate chips….I knew it was bad but I just couldn’t stop myself. My brain knew and understood what was happening but it just didn’t give a crap about the information and I kept on eating.

I felt like crap after every ‘food session’ I had. And it brought my self esteem down, it took a toll on me mentally in ways I think people chalk off as post partum when it wasn’t. It was anxiety eating, it was maybe a little depression but it wasn’t all because of my baby. It was everything. I told myself I feel like crap because I look like crap and therefore I am crap- I mean come on look at my thighs and this stomach- argh… Every Time I saw my cheeks getting bigger in the mirror I felt like eating to make myself feel better. It was a nasty disgusting sad cycle. And I knew nothing was ‘together’ about me at all.

Focusing On My Mentality Not My Body

I was doing a lot of things wrong, but the main thing I was doing wrong was focusing on my body and feeling only how my body looked. I realized that I’m not even addressing my mental health, I’m not focusing on how I feel and tackling that.
Yes I don’t have time, yes I’m totally bombarded with physical pain, baby, toddler, home, work, life in general but why was I only feeling the worst about my looks. With all that other stuff happening right in front, why was I only focusing on my body weight which was in the background. This isn’t right. What the hell was wrong with me, thinking that being slim was being the ideal me. I did feel good when I had lost those 30lbs, I felt great, but I only felt like that because I looked slim and pretty, my health was still high blood pressure from preeclampsia. Looking good meant so much to me that when I started to gain weight I felt like crap even though my health was getting better. Why am I doing that to myself?  Why couldn’t I just look in mirror and be like I’m fine the way I am, I’m going through some things and I will continue to do my best but how big I am isn’t going to be the reason I feel good or bad about myself. I’m finding food as my comfort and that should be what I tackle, not how much I weigh.
I need to tackle my mental fat rather than my physical fat because let’s face it no matter how skinny you are doesn’t mean you feel better at all. But if your mind is healthy, you will feel amazing no matter what size you are.

Teaching Myself Self Control

The house always needs cleaning, the kids are always messy, I’m in constant anxiety of my pain and the car, but the messiest thing in my life was me. My mind was in shambles. That was the first thing I was going to tackle.
First step is to learn self control all over again. Yes self control is something you have to teach yourself and practice. For someone like me, it’s very hard and every day is a mind battle ground. Mindfulness and being in the now has always been hard for me because as an anxious person I am always thinking about what will happen and the ‘what if’s’ so much that I can’t just enjoy now. I need to fix that. I need to get my eating under control and I’m not going to do something rash like “no carbs, no sugar, no flavour or happiness diet”. I was just going to do the only thing that made some sense right this moment and that is LIMIT. I would eat, but I’m not going to eat out of control. If I’m going to eat a piece of apple pie, it’s going to be a small piece and no cookies and other yummies after. If I’m going to just breastfeed all day and night I’m going to watch something or do something at the same time so I’m not sitting and thinking about eating. I am going to re-teach myself that food is for living, not for stuffing because I’m anxious. It’s going to be hard, I’m going to have days where I totally loose but I’m going to try and try my damn hardest. Because I do love myself, and I do want to be healthy and beautiful but not just in terms of physical, but also mentally.
I was fat shaming myself in the most horrible way, in one end I was eating out of control and then feeling like crap for doing it and then feeling worse when I saw the results of my out of control eating. It was a horrible fat shaming cycle that needed to end.
I no longer look in the mirror and feel bad about my body fat, I embrace it. This is me too. The results of putting my kids before me, putting my husband, his business, the house and everything else before me. I shouldn’t feel bad about this result, it’s a freaking badge of honor. And I’m going to try to get more badges of honor, the next one will be conquering my anxiety and control my eating so that I feel more in control.
If I don’t lose weight from just this, that’s okay because the fat that accumulated in my brain from all this self hate has to be the first thing to go. And I will brain fat shame myself to being mentally healthy, and hopefully as a result I will love myself more and teach my kids that being mentally healthy plays a big role in how physically healthy you are. And no matter what size you are, you have to love yourself because loving you is the start to being you. if you can’t love yourself because you think you’re fat, then you’ll lose to fat shaming yourself and trust me; it’s not pretty.

Life Lesson for Mommy #50:

Words To The Infertile Woman.

It’s not a comfortable conversation for any woman or man. It’s difficult, it’s confusing and it’s overwhelming. The fact is, that some women just can’t get pregnant. It can be for a number of reasons but none of them are anyone’s fault.  The norm of our society has always been that women should just be able to get pregnant and give life- since everyone does it. But does that mean that the women who can’t get pregnant aren’t normal? This is the furthest from the truth.

Pregnancy can just happen perfectly for some women- the like lucky 5% that just seem to get pregnant in a month, have a great pregnancy and just pop out a kid. But for the rest of the 95% of the population, it takes longer to get pregnant and from that 95% millions around the globe just can’t.

If you’re a women who’s struggling to get pregnant, I understand how you feel. It would be wrong of me to say I can relate to the anguish you’re going through.  I took a year to get pregnant. But I was panicking the entire year, so much so that my family doctor decided to send me to the OBGY before the year was up. I took an increase of folic acid, was told that the consecutive years of taking birth control would mean it would take a bit longer for me to get pregnant- but that if I still didn’t, they would run some TESTS… I freaked out at the word “TESTS”. Those tests are never fun.  So though I can’t relate to your hardship, I can understand the shock a woman may experience.

You are not alone, there are millions of women in North America alone struggling or are infertile. A friend of mine, a nurse, 33 years old struggled for 4 years of IVF, with disappointment after disappointment. It was only after she had given up the dream of having children that she was blessed with the news that she was pregnant. For her case, it ended happily with a beautiful baby girl. It was ultimate proof to her that the stress of conceiving can literally prevent you from conceiving. It was by her advice that I finally just stopped thinking about getting pregnant and just enjoyed my relationship with my husband. And I suppose with the combination of my efforts and sleeping with my husband when we wanted to, not when an a ovulation stick said to (and most of the time those sticks are inaccurate). I changed my thinking, and relaxed my body. I stopped putting pressure on me and my husband, and just accepted that what was to be, will be. And this is how my body is.

I was very fortunate, twice with the birth of my son 3 years after my daughter. I didn’t need IVF or tests…but it was a complicated pregnancy. Filled with confusion, overwhelming situations and just high risk, high anxiety- right to the very end when she was born just under 5 lbs. I had to work hard to create her, to nurture and give birth to her and I will never forget that time. So I may be more appreciative of my children then most people, not to say they don’t appreciate their babies. But when you are put through so much and told you might loose the baby- you never forget those words. And with that you earn an extra badge of honor.

But it was because of that experience that I came to understand how my friend must have felt for those 4 long years. How much she would have cried and cried, prayed and prayed. The silent suffering that only she would have gone through. How small and uncontrollable her life must have felt. How big of a failure she must have felt like. It was probably the hardest time in her life. And the relief she must have experienced to know she was pregnant- I can’t even imagine that kind of happiness.

However, she was like me, fortunate. There are still those women, who go through the difficulty of IVF, the years of wondering in limbo, shedding tears, shedding life and still come out with no child. It is hardship that cannot be matched to anything else on earth. To try to finally accept the words ‘I can’t have children’ is not something any woman can just take easily. And I feel you if you are one of these women. I feel your pain all the way inside my heart. It probably doesn’t help that every time you go somewhere, some ignorant well meaning person keeps asking you when are you going to have kids, and then the looks. Some people think something might be wrong with you that’s why you can’t have kids, and others think you’re selfish for not having it- all the while they just don’t realize that you having been trying and just can’t. Is it their business? No, and you don’t have to stand there and give them an explanation. But you know what, you should.

Why not. What a woman who is going through difficulty conceiving shouldn’t do is hole herself up. I understand. Trust me I understand. I for years kept quiet about the private complications I was going through for my first baby.  What finally made me open up about it, is the shame I felt, died. I no longer accepted this idea that we need to be hush hush about these kinds of things because it makes us look like we failed being women. That getting pregnant and having children was the most natural thing on earth for a woman to do and I couldn’t do that right. I killed those thoughts right out of my mind!

It is natural, it probably is the most natural thing in mother nature. But just because you weren’t able to do something; does that make you less of a woman? How is it a failure that if you by nature are not able to conceive? Isn’t that natures fault? It’s God’s fault, its anyone else’s fault but yours. No matter what. A woman who is infertile, doesn’t suddenly stop being a woman, just like a man who can’t make a woman pregnant doesn’t suddenly stop being a man.

Reproducing is the most natural thing, but that might not be some women’s natural ability. Babies are miracles and not all are blessed with this miracle. But that’s okay. A woman who is infertile has a different miracle she can perform- a choice. The choice to take it to a level that is above and beyond what a ‘normal’ woman will do. She can adopt or find a surrogate. She can bring a miracle to a child who wants a mom like her. She can be the miracle. You can’t have children. That’s okay because now you are going to bring a miracle to a child who is already born but doesn’t have the miracle of a mom. You can give a love that may honestly be beyond what a blood connection can produce.

There are millions of children in the world who do not have a mother, and millions of woman who cannot give birth to a child. This was what you were meant to do. This was the greatness and the badge of honor you were meant to have. If surrogate is your path, that is something that is also hard and you might struggle with, but in the end you will have the miracle you ache for.

The point is that you are not alone. And you don’t have to end your dreams of having children there.

You don’t have to look at adoption as the ‘plan b’. Plan B is usually something people plan because Plan A might have been to unrealistic to achieve. This child you adopt or gain from surrogacy will be your child, will be your miracle. The love between a mother and child will still be connected because you will be the person who will go be going through the hardships to grow and nurture him or her. There may not be an umbilical cord, but there is a bond that just can’t be cut.

You by nature weren’t able to conceive. You will not experience the rip of a child being born from you. You will not go through 10 months of vomiting and back pain that you so long for. You will not have any of those. But you will be the light to a child who has no mother. You will be the miracle to a child who aches for you to select him/her. You will change the course of that child’s life and be the beckon of light that all mothers are. You will be all those and much more. You will be a mother in your own right, maybe above and beyond a ‘normal’ mother. Because it is very easy and pretty natural for mothers who have their own babies to just love at first sight their kids. Your love will be deeper and beyond a physical connection- that is something that’s amazingly beyond natural, beyond labor.

You are still a woman. And now a mother just like me. You have a decision to make now. A long conversation with your partner about your options, please consider adoption very carefully. There are children out there who need a mother like you. You are a miracle, you truly are, so don’t think the miracle of life skipped you. It didn’t, it’s just taking a different form.

So naturally I bid you good luck, and happy motherhood.

Lesson for Mommy #49:

The Perfectly Imprefect You.

I spend a good chunk of my week checking out different recipes, crafts, parenting tips etc on Pinterest and Momma bloggers. And the one thing I see a lot is ‘perfection’. I  said this a long time ago, but I’m not perfect. And seeing so much perfection all over the net from all the mommy bloggers and pinterest creates this image that you should also be able to create this perfection.

You see white walls, clean children, a hot family dinner on the table, bento lunches for the next day, and the whole house top to bottom is clean. Um where are you finding the time to do these things? My 4 year old goes to Preschool, and I have a 13month old son- who is walking, but refusing to learn sign and just fusses all the time. I’m still breastfeeding and struggling to get things done; I’m finding it so hard to even find time to do something for myself. I try really hard to maintain everything, try to get wonderful meals, keep the house clean and tidy, and also take care of my children. But it’s really hard and I’m having to sacrifice a lot. In this time I’m also struggling to maintain some pain in my neck (from a car accident a while back) thats eating up time like crazy.

ARGH! I’m even skipping re-reading what I time and correcting spelling misteakes and snetence issues…you get the idea!

So when I pinterest, I feel awful! This image of a perfect home with the white walls, with perfect kids that just seem to do what they’re supposed to do, and meals that are just so healthy makes kale feel worthless; it all just gets me down. And a lot of times their ‘how to manage time’, ‘quick fixes’ aren’t so quick or manageable at all! Just more tips on how to be perfect.

I try to remind myself though that ‘this’ is just an image. An image of perfection, it might not be reality, not even for these perfectly perfect pictures. Sure there are some momma’s who just have it all together and just get things done like BAM BAM BAM, DONE! But with the amount of pinterest momma’s out there, it gives the illusion that they all have those white walls.

No one wants to show their dirty laundry on the internet, so instead they post the picture of their folded laundry. With this age of technology we momma’s are adding so much pressure on ourselves ‘TO LOOK GOOD”. It’s not just a body image issue now. It’s an everything issue. Way too much pressure. To look good with kids on both arms, a clean home in the background, with dinner on the table and everythings all sparkley!

I have my good days where everything just rolls and it all gets done and I’m like WOW is this how those Pinterest Momma’s feel all the time. But the point is that are we really this superficial? That we need to post ‘look how perfect I am’. And even when it’s something thats a fail they post it in such a way that it doesn’t even seem like a fail….like your minions cake looks awesome even if the yellow shade is slightly off….like wtf is that even a fail? That’s a huge accomplishment and your damn cake is so freaking awesome I wish I could eat it through my laptop !

So what is reality and what is ‘just for the internet’. The fact is that even these pinterest mom’s have tough lives. They’re just doing the best they can and posting their ‘best photo’ for social media. Some often talk about how many nights of fails and effort they put into their material. They try and try even if it means sacrificing sleep- but not all of us are like that. We don’t have an audience of readers waiting to see the next great blog post. These perfect momma’s though are maybe doing more harm to themselves then good, because they may be teaching their kids image is everything, perfection is everything. Post only your triumphs not your failures. And they may be doing harm to you as the reader, a mother who is just doing the best she can too with what she has. In this age of social media, we mommy’s are just putting more and more pressure on ourselves then we need to. Why are we doing that? You don’t see fathers doing this?

There are momma’s like me who post their failures, post their hard days and the real stuff that just can’t get any more real, so there is a balance. Because with all those pictures of perfection we need a reminder of how wonderful it is to be imprefect. How amazing that unfolded laundry is. Because I would rather sacrifice folding laundry and spend my time doing crafts with my daughter. I would rather forfeit making a super duper healthy kale on kale with guinoa dinner to let my nursing son explore the pantry with me (pulling down and disorganizing everything. I hate it sometimes, but I still do it. I feel bad about it sometimes, but I still do it.

You can be a perfect mommy and still have fails. Failures and messiness is how we know we tried, and I don’t want my daughter see me perfect, I want her to see my imperfections so she knows it’s okay to be imperfect, to have flaws and failures. Why not? In her lifetime she’s going to try and fail sometimes, she’s going to gain weight, loose weight, get pimples, have people who are better at something then her, I want to give her the emotional stability to cope with that. To accept herself. I also want the same for my son. He’s not lacking because he isn’t perfect in something.

Why do we post perfection on social media? Why do we need other people to think we are perfect and everything we do is perfect. Don’t dismay and think you’re doing something wrong, because that picture with the clean white walls might just be the only white wall in their house. Don’t fret and continue being the imperfect you.

And always, Good Luck!
😀

Lesson for Mommy #48:

Don’t Be A Racist

The friend who I wrote “STOP, Don’t BreastFeed in Public” for, turned out to be kinda racist. Well maybe not racist, but anti-immigrant and anti-anything that is not white.

The people who stopped her from breastfeeding in public according to her, were immigrants apparently and like normal racist judgment, that means only non-whites could ever stop her from breastfeeding in public. I have a lot I want to say about her situation in particular and I don’t disagree: that these people should have never stopped her and they should be better educated as new immigrants into the country about the social laws of that country; and more importantly should be educated by the company about their policies. That’s not their fault. The system failed them, they company failed them, so in turn they failed this breast feeding momma.

I was very upset about the way she talked about immigrants, using inflammatory terms like ‘some black guy with an accent I couldn’t understand’. It just set off a weird instinct that may be predisposed- but damn this is getting racist is what I thought. And what’s worse, is that her daughter and older son were right there while she’s saying these things.

If these are her feelings against her fellow human beings that are not ‘white’, then she’s going to inadvertently teach her kids to be racist, to look down on people who aren’t white. And this is a very big problem.

If you’re racist, as a side affect you teach your children to be racist- whether intentionally or unintentionally. You are growing the next generation of bigoted ignorant fools. And with the world mixing, people blending and living together, these aren’t the values you should be teaching. Love, harmony, co-existence and respect is something every human has the right to.  I don’t want to get into the gritty history of this, but white folks, unless you’re still in Europe, you are all immigrants. If you’re white and you’re living in a different country then what you were born in- you’re an immigrant. Although the word ‘expat’ is thrown around a lot, that’s just a nice way of saying immigrant.

I also don’t want to remind these racist folks slavery’s long and rampant history that continues today anytime a ‘white man’ calls a ‘non white man’ a racist term. So why teach your kids these horrible things. Saying discriminatory things even if in the slightest is still teaching them that their ‘white skin’ is somehow better.

This friend of mine, wasn’t even all that racist, and had been a friend of mine for so long- so to hear her say these kinds of things really shook me. I even asked myself, are all white people a little racist inside even the one’s who aren’t racist? Is this natural? Should I accept this? But what about her daughter- who is this pure innocent beautiful little girl. I don’t want that little girl to grow up having a “little” racism against my son because he’s not white.

Think about it. What are you teaching your kids about other people- other skin colors, other races, religion? Have you ever fallen into the trap of saying ‘that stupid Chinese guy can’t drive’. It could be a small insignificant joke but to your child it’s pre-prep to a bias, to a bigotry that you may not even know you are instilling.

And racism isn’t limited to just Caucasian people- no ethnic people can be racist too against white people and other ethnics. Trust me I’ve lived it and seen it. And you don’t want your ethnic children feeling that white people are better or lesser then them- both are dangerous. Equals, that’s the message that we should be teaching.

When my daughter was younger, for whatever reason seemed to be a little afraid of black people and brown people with turbans and beards. And I didn’t accept that from her. I told her, there is nothing to be afraid of, they are people just like you. They have feelings just like you, and they live just like you. How they dress, what their skin colour is means nothing. I would explain to her that she is also a different color and that momma is brown and daddy is Chinese and you are a beautiful blend of both of us. And that man is black and beautiful and this man is not and still beautiful. It’s a tricky place because at the same time I was telling her don’t talk to strangers and don’t go with strangers…tricky indeed.

But it paid off, she has this wonderful sense of human pride. She plays with all kids of different ethnic backgrounds and doesn’t shy away or gravitate to a particular race. Like innocent children, her opinions about a particular person isn’t stemming from what they look like, but how they treat her. “Devon” a male classmate is white and he’s like a bff – best boy friend right now; and she loves playing with him and he loves playing with her. Then there are 2 other children she plays with who are from other backgrounds, one of them who can’t speak English all that well but my daughter doesn’t see that as an issue at all- somehow she just knows what this kid is saying. They all just play with each other and hug good bye at the end of the day- like lovely wonderful human beings.

That’s what the world should be like! That’s what we all should be teaching our kids! There should be no ‘inner racist’ that suddenly comes out when someone does something. I have to admit I have caught myself saying ‘typical white guy mentality’ and I had to stop and recheck myself- what the heck am I even saying. This isn’t right, just because a group of white people may have a certain belief or hold a certain value, that does NOT mean that ALL white people share that belief or value. In fact, just because this friend who I have known for a long time turned out to be a little racist, doesn’t mean that any of my other white friends are the same.

And I will not teach my kids that discrimination is okay and that being a racist because historically we were oppressed is okay. How  we view other people and what we say about other people impacts our children. And I don’t want my kids to turn into the kind of people who hurt someone based on their colour, race, religion or sexual orientation.

I won’t be a racist and you shouldn’t be one too.

Good Luck!
😀