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

Be Bold

Any full time Mummy will agree it can be challenging sneaking a moment to yourself, especially when your family live overseas and your hardworking man works long hours. There’s barely time to eat, poop and shower, let alone build a business.

Whilst time for inspired action and ‘doing’ is somewhat limited, there is plenty of time for dreaming; especially when trapped beneath a tiny Prince for his third nap of the day.

‘Dreaming, after all, is a form of planning.’

– Gloria Steinem

I have surrendered to less DOING and more BEING during these precious early months of caring for our son, Kole. As a once immaculate neat freak, this transition hasn’t been easy. But I can now safely say ‘Fuck it!’ if the dishes aren’t done, the house is a shambles and my hair looks like a birds nest.

Being present to Kole’s needs first and foremost feels so much better than striving frantically to live up to Superwoman standards in order to get it all done.

As I dream myself into alignment with my desires, I feel the magic of the unknown rising up in my chest. It feels warm. It feels bold and it feels ALIVE.

This Mummy is not going backwards into the security of her old life, but forward with courage and commitment.

What dreams of yours are stirring within you? Let them brew long enough that they absorb the richness and fullness of Divine flavour, but not so long that they become cold and forgotten…

Today, dream a little longer and trust that your time will come.

Love always,

Hayley xx

Remember…

In the event of loss, setbacks and adversity, it’s easy to lose site of the shore. It takes effort to remain mindful and present to joy when your head is spinning with ‘what if’s’ and ‘if only’s’.

If you’ve found yourself caught in the murky abyss, hold strong. Your first job is only to acknowledge you are there. Tire yourself not with thoughts of how you wound up there and how on Earth you’ll ever get out, simply BE in the abyss and feel all the feels. Honour exactly where you are in this moment.

Trust that you have the power to heal and like anything, this shall pass. Now hand it over to a Higher Power, and let go.

All will be revealed to you in good time if you simply keep faith.

Remember, you are an infinite, unlimited being of light and LOVE. And with love in your heart ANYTHING is possible – even the murkiest of waters can be transcended into crystal clear rivers.

You, my Dear one, are completely unhindered. Place your feet firmly on the earth, arms stretched wide, eyes tilted to the skies, and smile.

Everything will be ok.

Love always,

Hayley xx

Trust Yourself

I think every parent needs to be reminded of this… When I was first flung into the lions den of parenting, I felt like a fish out of water wearing learner plates and training wheels. Sometimes I still do. This was further exasperated by all of the ‘noise’ out there.

My advice? Try not to google everything. Tune out to the world and tune into yourself. Listen only to that which resonates with you and leave all the rest behind.

There is no wrong or right way. Only the right way for you and your family.

‘The more people have studied different methods of bringing up children, the more they have come to the conclusion that what good mothers and fathers instinctively feel like doing for their babies is the best after all.’

– Benjamin Spock

Trust yourself. You know more then you think.

Love always,

Hayley xx

The Folds And Creases

I am slowly beginning to accept the folds and creases as a normal part of motherhood; whoever says parenting is easy is bullshitting you. Motherhood is magical, but it’s also DEMANDING.

There are days I’m lucky to take a shower before midday, brush my hair or take a pee. Eating is limited to fruit and toast, and I’m often seen sporting two round wet patches where my milk has leaked through my nipple pads. Leaving the house looking like a scarecrow no longer bothers me – I couldn’t give two shits because I’m just grateful I left the house!

I’m in awe of mums who manage to look presentable and hold their shit together, I’m wondering when that day will arrive for me? But I’m also secretly wondering what’s really beneath the Mummy mask… because surely I’m not alone in this?

Today, let us acknowledge our deep, unwavering, profoundly passionate love for our children, but let us also acknowledge the grit it takes to live with the folds and the creases.

This squishy face makes all the sleepless nights worthwhile…

Love always,

Hayley xx

Mothers Milk

Nobody said breastfeeding would be easy… So far my baby and I have experienced the initial breaking in period of cracked nipples, early onset of mastitis, and we are currently navigating an overactive let down which means I drown my son in milk each time we feed! Queue choking, frustrated baby who chomps down on my breasts to slow the flow…

There are times when I feel like giving up, but I know this breastfeeding journey will get easier with time. It’s worth me persevering to provide the best nourishment for my child.

‘Breastfeeding is a Mother’s gift to herself, her baby and the earth’ – Pamela K. Wiggins.

In some ways, breastfeeding prepares us for Motherhood. It is to place another’s needs before our own.

I understand breastfeeding isn’t for everyone, and I have no judgement towards women who choose alternative ways to feed their baby. As a bottle fed baby myself, I respect every woman’s decision as a choice.

For me, that choice has been to nourish my child with what Mother Nature provided. Not simply ‘because it’s free’ (…anyone who says that clearly doesn’t know the time and effort that goes into breastfeeding!) I choose the breast because this is the food that was intended for my baby to help him grow and thrive.

What sacrifices/difficulties/adversities have you experienced on your baby feeding journey? Did you reach a point when it all began to get a little easier?

Love always,

(One curious breastfeeding Mumma)

xx

The Best You Have To Give

What are you worried about? Where in your life are you avoiding something because of fear?

For a large part of my pregnancy I worried myself silly about labour and unnecessary hospital interventions. I’d heard countless horror stories (and have thankfully discovered tonnes of positive ones since!) and the thought of birth left me terrified.

‘Worry is the number one thief of our time, and has the power to rob you of the beauty of today.’

If you were to let go of your worrying, what beauty could be found in this moment?

Many of us remain safe in our comfort zone because a lot of our fears can be avoided. Unfortunately, birth and death are not one of them.

If you had no choice but to face your fears with courage, what changes would you make today to your mindset? Your spirit? Your HEART?

Don’t waste a moment longer feeling fearful. Acknowledge what you’re scared of, ‘feel the fear and do it anyway.’

Trust that everything will work out for your highest good.

Love Always,

Hayley xx

Soulful Sunday #60: The Other Side Of Fear

The other side of fear

Welcome to my fifty-sixth instalment of ‘Soulful Sundays’; a weekly share where I post a roundup of soulful reflections, each including recipes, songs, quotes, blogs I have read and/or any other inspirational discoveries to sooth the soul.

For me, Sunday’s have become a day of quiet contemplation and simple pleasures. A time to reflect on the week gone by and to consider my dreams and intentions for the week ahead.

My hope is to extend some love outward and to share some simple pleasures with anyone who cares to receive them.

Soul Reflections

Fear is debilitating. It can literally leave us paralysed with anxiety.

There is a famous quote (and book for that matter) by Susan Jeffers who reminds us:

Feel the fear and do it anyway.

My biggest work over the last few months has been to face my fears around labour, particularly around the ‘normal’ practice of hospitals whose medical interventions often result in unnecessary trauma for both Mum and baby. Don’t get me wrong, in a medical emergency these procedures can save lives; but in a normal, safe, healthy pregnancy and birth, such interventions often cause more harm than good.  Is it any wonder then, that we hear so many horror stories about birth?

Once my fears were acknowledged, I could then begin to dissolve them. I turned to natural birthing books and absorbed myself in the thousands of positive birth stories (yes – they exist!!!) each contained. The more I read, the more I began to meet women who had birthed naturally, and with less complications (if any) than those who had birthed at the hands of doctors and drugs.

We also decided on Hypno-birthing classes to prepare ourselves for a calm birth using breath work, relaxations, visualisations, strengthening affirmations and natures own pain relief; oxytocin – all of which helped to deepen our confidence and trust in a natural birth.

Whilst our preparations do not guarantee us a smooth, uninterrupted birth with little to no complication or medical intervention; what they do provide us with are the innate tools to birth in love and trust, rather than shrouded in fear.

Of course, there are always some residue fears of the unknown and lingering What if’s? But since the only way out of my birth is through, I must ‘feel the fear and do it anyway.’

The only way out is through.

– Robert Frost

And through we shall go, in love and trust.

Soul Strolls

With three weeks to go until we meet our baby, strolling has become somewhat of a waddle! The pelvic pressure is real haha And so, after finishing my last week of work last Friday, I decided to put my feet up and rest this pregnant body.

I booked in for a pregnancy massage at Endota Spa (which was the best massage I’ve ever had, and I’ve had a lot!) and soaked up the healing vibes. I plan to spend the next three weeks resting and nourishing myself and our baby, and enjoying our last few weeks as a ‘two.’

HAYLEY_28(LowRes)

‘Let us be grateful to people who make us happy, they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.’ – Marcel Proust

Soul Recipes

This recipe is an oldy but a goody of mine. I love using my slow cooker, and this dish lends itself perfectly to one. It’s hearty, it’s comforting, it’s delicious and it’s even healthy My Hearty Lentil Curry gets a thumbs up every time. Let me know what you think!

Lentil-Curry-Recipe-FV-768x520

Yummy lentil curry!

Soul Music

On the other side of fear lies freedom and peace. So today I would love to share this delightfully peaceful track by Ashana titled Deep Peace. Put you feet up, take a deep breath in and receive the deep peace flowing to you. Now sigh and release. You are free. You are safe. You are secure and loved.

Soul Sisters

Today I would love to share this beautifully nourishing poem titled Bliss by Aroused. A timely reminder for us to connect with our intuition within and to trust.

Wrapping you all in a warm loving hug on this soulful Sunday.

Love always,

Hayley xx

Believe You Can

Think you can or can't
You can do all of the preparation in the world to ensure you achieve your end result; you can cover all your bases with prevention methods and tools for success – but if you are lacking that one vital element, all of your carefully laid out plans may well be in vain.

So what is the vital ingredient? SELF-BELIEF.

Belief in oneself, your capabilities and your worth is key for the success of any personal venture. If you have lingering self-doubts or lack trust in your abilities then you are already setting yourself up for failure. That’s not a bad thing. No doubt you will gain some wisdom for the next time…

But if you’d like to avoid there having to be a next time, begin with your mindset today.

Believe YOU CAN. Believe YOU ARE WORTHY and TRUST in yourself.

As I near closer to my birthing and my intentions for a natural, instinctive birth – my mindset matters now more than ever. Because whether I believe I can, or believe I can’t – I am right.

Today, believe you can.

Love Always,
Hayley xx

Soulful Sunday #55: Beautiful Bodies

comparison

Welcome to my fifty-fifth instalment of ‘Soulful Sundays’; a weekly share where I post a roundup of soulful reflections, each including recipes, songs, quotes, blogs I have read and/or any other inspirational discoveries to sooth the soul.

For me, Sunday’s have become a day of quiet contemplation and simple pleasures. A time to reflect on the week gone by and to consider my dreams and intentions for the week ahead.

My hope is to extend some love outward and to share some simple pleasures with anyone who cares to receive them.

Soul Reflections

At seven and a half months pregnant, I’m amazed by the number of women who feel compelled to comment on the size of my bump, comparing its size to that of their friend who is ‘due two weeks before me and is SO much smaller’, so small in fact you can ‘hardly tell’. I’ve even had my belly compared to a basket ball!

I’d like to think the women delivering these words are well intentioned and simply unaware of the potential harm their comments can cause. Still, I can’t help but feel a little disheartened that body comparison is so prevalent, even during pregnancy.

Isn’t a women supposed to feel beautiful and bountiful in her pregnant body? Is the fullness of her tummy not the fullest expression of creation itself? A time to celebrate the changes in her body as it nurtures new life within?

I have to acknowledge that I’ve also had many women tell me I look beautiful and stunning as I bloom to full size. To those Divine Goddesses; I salute you. For you are the ones who focus not on the ‘neatness of the bump’, or for how long it can remain disguised or ‘unnoticed’; but instead on the natural beauty to be embraced throughout the many changing phases of a woman’s body.

Today, let’s lift each other up. Let’s celebrate our bodies; big, small, teeny or tall, remembering that we are ALL Divine.

Soul Strolls

This week’s soul strolling took place in the hospital. We had our hospital tour where we were able to walk through where we’ll go on the day of our birthing. Despite having had some fears around birthing in a hospital, as I walked the corridors I blessed them with love and repeated the mantra, ‘All is well. I have nothing to fear. Love, peace, harmony and joy surround and indwell me.’

The Mercy Hospital for Women does feel like a safer space than my previous hospital. The midwives are very supportive of a natural birth with as little intervention as possible. I trust I am in safe hands.

Live your life as if everything is rigged in your favour.

– Rumi

Soul Recipes

lamb-massaman-tall3

My partner loves to buy a Massaman Curry from our local Thai. Since he spent this soulful Sunday working, I decided to surprise him with a Slow Cooked Lamb Massaman which was simply divine! I adapted the recipe slightly (and cheated) by buying a massaman curry paste rather than making my own from scratch, as this recipe suggests. If I owned a food processor I would definitely have attempted the homemade paste in this recipe… I also used carrots, red pepper and red chillies in addition to the potato instead of the green beans, since I already had those vegetables on hand at home.

Needless to say, this dish was yummy and my man had a happy tummy after a hard days work.

Soul Music

I’d love to share Heather Mae’s I Am Enough as a stunning reminder that our body’s are not ‘wrong’ or ‘shameful’. We can be grateful for our body, regardless of our shape or size. This makes me smile each time I listen. Today, give your body a big appreciative hug, tell your body how much you love it… and then have a good ole dance to this feel good track! I’ll be dancing along with you with my pregnant bump 😉

Soul Sisters

I’d love to share the work of a soul sister who has been pivotal in reducing my fears around labour. I bought Kat’s book in my second trimester when I was led to it by a serendipitous moment. It was just what I needed to believe in my abilities to birth my baby naturally. I will be gifting Kat’s work to any pregnant ladies I know! You can find Kat at The Birth Goddess.

Wishing you all a soulful Sunday. May you feel safe, supported and loved, today and always.

Love always,

Hayley xx