All Good Things Must Come To An End

This is me 2018. It’s been a year of extreme highs and inevitable lows; growing and birthing a beautiful baby boy has been magical, momentous and equally terrifying!

Motherhood has connected me to a love so profound it scares me how fiercely one can love another human; but parenthood has also brought me to my knees, literally. I’ve been floored both physically and emotionally and some days I’ve barely recognised the woman staring back at me in the mirror.

I’ve been pushed to all of my edges and limits and there have been days when I’ve cracked and broken into a gazillion pieces. Feeling vulnerable is an understatement. Parenting has a way of unearthing all of your unhealed wounds and past traumas. (I highly recommend it, it’s great therapy!)

Yet even in my darkest hours a silent voice has reminded me that I’m also resilient AF, and this woman is by no means shattered beyond repair. In fact, quite the opposite. I’ve earnt my strong Mumma wings and I am spreading them far and wide in 2019 with nothing but love and gratitude for this transformational journey I’m on. I welcome the continuing growth and expansion that’s to come for both myself and my little family.

I gave up on New Years resolutions years ago, but I do like to set a theme for the year and I’m making 2019 my year of TRUST.

I am trusting in myself, I am trusting in my intuition, I am trusting in my worth as a woman, I trust in my capacity to continue to give as a mother, I trust in the goodness of others, I trust that the Universe has our back and is supporting my family regardless of what life throws our way.

And on that note I’m shaking my booty into 2019 with a twinkle in my eye and a heart full of love, compassion, acceptance, forgiveness, faith and gratitude for all I have learnt and all I am willing to let go of.

2018, thank you for the lessons. 2019, I am ready!

I will be taking a break for blogging on WordPress but you can find me on Instagram and Facebook by following the links in the sidebar 👉🏻

Dear Dad has been my home for 5 years of writing, but I’ll admit I’ve struggled to maintain my blog since becoming a mother. It doesn’t feel right blogging here when I simply don’t have the time to reciprocate by reading all of your magical blogs.

And so I am taking a break from this platform but will continue to post on my Instagram feed!

I will reserve this space for its original intent, which was, and still is, a place for me to simply say: Dear Dad…

Thank you for being so supportive over the years and for the loving connections I have gained from this sacred space, I love each and every one of you 💖

Love always

Peace out ✌🏻

Hayley xx

Dear Dad

Dear Dad, as I sit here on the Eve of Christmas watching our baby boy play, I can’t help but wish you were here; yet…something in the twinkle of his eye and the curve of his smile tells me you are 💙

I will always love you, I will never forget you… Thank you for being my Dad, my hero, our guiding star 💫

Here’s to those special souls who cannot be with us this Christmas; whose presence, though deeply missed, will be always be felt,

Love always,

Hayley xx

Happiness, A Direction

I was saddened to hear an old school friend recently passed, leaving behind his family and son. I later learned he’d battled with depression. My heart felt heavy.

So many who feel burdened, or that they are a burden on others, feel their only answer is to take matters into their own hands. So many lives lost, so many hurting families are left to pick up the broken pieces. It’s times like this I remember how important my mindfulness and emotional awareness work with children really is. Could depression really be prevented by teaching children self awareness and emotional regulation? I believe so.

How often have you heard, or even repeated this line: “I’ll be happy when… *insert perceived doorway to happiness here*

This is part of the problem we face; feeling powerless and placing our happiness on external events, but happiness is not OUT THERE. Happiness is not a place in the future we have yet to arrive at. It’s in here 👉🏻❤️

Happiness is an inside job, it’s a feeling, a choice, a direction of focus, a decision to be grateful regardless of our circumstances. It’s also an act of self love, a recognition of our own self worth.

Once we realise that possessions and people are not the primary source of our happiness, we can begin to take control of our own peace and joy.

“But my husband makes me happy? My children are a great source of joy…My home brings me peace…” All very true and valid statements, to which I relate to every one. I adore our home for the sanctuary it brings and I love my family unconditionally. They stimulate my joy and happiness all the time. (Notice how I said MY joy.) They awaken the happiness that ALREADY EXISTS within me by their sheer existence and presence in my life. And whilst that means my joy would be severely depleted if ever they were to leave, ultimately, my happiness would still remain, even if a little more dormant. It would be up to me to choose (or not choose) to reawaken my joy.

‘Where our attention goes, energy flows.’

And it’s precisely this flow of energy that drives our experiences and ultimately, our sense of happiness. Some days it’s harder than others, some days we just need to feel all the feels and that’s ok too. Just remember, if those days turn into weeks, months and even years, it’s ALWAYS ok to reach out and ask for help.

Today, may you feel the deep sense of peace within you. May all the people and circumstances you meet stir the infinite well of joy in your soul.

Love always,

Hayley xx

A Sailor’s Life For Me

Becoming a mother shook me to my core. I resonated with Mayim Bialik when she said: “I came to parenting the way most of us do — knowing nothing and trying to learn everything.” I soon discovered there was so much conflicting information ‘out there’ that I began to doubt what I instinctively felt was right.

I was, and still am, learning; but the biggest lesson I’ve learnt is that there are no rules to parenting. No one way fits all.

As soon as I began to tune out to the world and tune into my baby; everything just sort of fell into place.

The stress and anxiety and self-doubt subsided and I finally feel like I’m not such a rookie at this parenting business after all. The joyful moments now outweigh the ‘oh f*ck!’ moments and I can safely say “I love being a Mum.” It’s the most natural instinctive feeling in the world. Heart explosions occur as often as poop explosions (and believe me, that’s a lot!) As cliche as it sounds, the love and protection you feel for your child is overwhelmingly profound and no other feeling comes close.

Motherhood is by far the most challenging, magical and wonky journey I have ever voyaged; but if I am to remain cast away at sea without a sail amidst the turbulent adventure that is parenting, then a sailors life is for me.

Love always,

Hayley xx

Timeless

3 months… 12 weeks… 84 days… 288 hours… 17280 minutes… 1036800 seconds… However this precious time spent with you is to be counted, I choose to see it as eternal and forever imprinted in our hearts… 👣❤️

Here’s to sleepless nights and poonami explosions, milky voms and ‘stinky ear’ cuddles, cherished memories and forgotten dishes, endless rocking and dribbly kisses, tantrums, tears and toothless grins and a whole bunch of love, weirdness and belly laughter in between 💝

I’d do it all again for you in a heartbeat baby Kole 💙

Love always xx

Good Times Hard Times

Nobody wants a fair weathered friend who only shows up when your life is flowing with ease and grace.

We can’t all ride the limo of success and happiness all of the time, but if you have a handful of loyal souls who walk beside you through thick or thin, then consider yourself blessed, for those are the truest of connections worth treasuring.

Be grateful for those willing to ride with you aboard that rickety broken down bus; even when it’s hitting all the pot holes, coming up against roadblock after roadblock and struggling to get over the hill.

Today, express your love and gratitude for the people in your life who remind you that you’re not alone.

Who rides with you through the good times and the bad..?

Love always,

Hayley xx

Stop And Smell The Roses

There have been moments during the past seven weeks of parenting that I’ve experienced mild to moderate, to at times, even manic overwhelm. But I know not to beat myself up.

Mumming and breastfeeding non stop around the clock with little to no sleep can send even the most grounded of persons spinning off the earth’s axis.

I am not perfect, nor must I try to be.

In spite of the craziness, I love my little family unconditionally and wouldn’t trade any of this madness in for the world. For amidst the mayhem are bountiful blessings that make it all worthwhile; I am Mum to a beautiful, spirited son who lights up my world despite keeping us well on our toes; I have my supportive, hardworking spunk of a man by my side who provides buttery crumpets to warm my tum and endless laughter to warm my heart; I am also blessed enough to be surrounded by authentic women who I am proud to call my friends.

I honestly believe that the more grateful we are about life, the more life has to offer us things to be grateful for.

It’s so easy to get blindsided when emotions are running high, so today, tune in and count your blessings.

What blessings keep you keeping on?

Nothing in life is guaranteed, not even our next breath. As extreme as this may sound, it’s important to remember this simple truth if we are to appreciate all life has to offer.

Before becoming a Mummy I walked everyday, sometimes even twice a day for an hour each time. These days I am lucky to get a half hour walk depending on my sons mood… I have learnt not to expect my walk, but to be grateful when it does happen. This way I avoid disappointment and appreciate our time spent in nature all the more. I remember to ‘stop and smell the roses’ 🌹 Or in my case, these beautiful orange flowers (I have no idea what they are, feel free to educate me!) 😉

Today, stop and smell the roses. Notice your next breath and give thanks. Expect nothing and appreciate everything, and if you can’t appreciate it, at least accept it.

Love always,

Hayley xx

Perfect Parenting (No Such Thing)

One thing I am learning on this crazy parenting ride is that motherhood is a huge lesson in trust, acceptance and surrender; because there really is no such thing as perfect parenting.

Each day I’m turning new corners as I slowly embrace and accept all that is perfectly imperfect about mumming…

…From having to change and bath my baby boy twice within half an hour of waking (the poop explosions are real 💩💩😳) to having to turn back home just minutes from leaving my doorstep due to hysterical crying two days in a row (my little darling has suddenly decided he prefers being rocked to sleep in my arms during his afternoon nap over being walked to sleep in his stroller…) Bye bye nature walks, Mummy!! 👋🏻🌳😫

As defeating as these moments can feel, it’s impossible to remain frustrated for long… especially when I look at Kole’s tiny little face.

I am so very blessed.

A perfect Mum, I am not – but a good one? Yes I am. I love this tiny soul with every ounce of my being 💙🌈 And if that means giving up my afternoon walks for cuddles, then I surrender… 🤗

What else makes me a good Mum? Laughing after my son spits up milk all down my chest – only to see him chuckling (for the first time ever) right back at me with a mouth full of milk 🙌🏻🥛🤣

What is one of the million ways you are a good Mum? It’s time to acknowledge your superpowers!

Love always,

Hayley xx

The Smallest Things…

There’s no doubt that parenting can be lonely business and often the days can seem long and repetitive. But the dichotomy is that I also never want these days to end… Why? Because there is SO much magic in the seemingly mundane, enough to turn even the longest and loneliest of days into my greatest source of joy.

For me, it’s in my morning conversations with Kole; it’s gazing into his eyes and seeing the future in them; it’s studying his ever changing expressions and realising an hour has passed by; it’s feeling his tiny breaths kissing my skin; it’s noticing his crying soften and his tense body relax the moment I hold him close to my heart… If it wasn’t for these moments of magic in our day, parenting would undoubtedly turn us all insane.

But thankfully, ‘sometimes the smallest moments take up the most room in your heart.’ Today, look for the magic. It’s there.

What are the small moments that take up the most room in your heart?

Love always,

Hayley xx

Baby Blues

‘Baby blues, baby blues, all caught up in those baby blues.’ – The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band

This has been my song for the last three days. At first I thought there was something wrong with me. How can I feel so joyful yet so sad at the same time?

Bursting into tears for no apparent reason whilst my heart simultaneously swells with love for this little soul we’ve created is an overwhelming cocktail of emotions.

And then I heard of ‘the baby blues.’ 80% of women will experience the baby blues and it usually passes within 2 to 3 days.

However, if you find you are feeling teary, anxious, and irritable with moods that are up and down for longer than two weeks, reach out for support from friends and family, as well as professionals as you may be experiencing early signs of post natal depression.

Remember to be gentle on yourself and don’t be afraid to ask for help. Giving birth is a huge undertaking on a woman’s body and emotions and now is not the time to berate yourself. You are doing the best you can.

Bad days don’t make you a bad mum, they simply remind you that you are human; not superwoman.

Trust that like anything, in time, it will pass. You’ve got this Mumma!

Love always,

Hayley xx