Browsing Tag

motherhood

Health, Health/Fitness, Slider

Porridge Brain Is Real

September 25, 2017

I just remembered how forgetful I always am, so let me jot this down real quick before I forget again.

Do you ever feel like you have to write everything down to remember it later? If you even remember to read what you’ve written in order to know what it is you have to remember.

Confusing, right? Well, that’s exactly what my brain looks like after having three kids! Yet it’s been an age-old debate whether porridge brain is actually “a thing” and if it is, whether it’s a biological or social phenomenon. It’s probably one of the conditions that baffle medics and scientists the most – mainly because we don’t go to the doctor for medication every time we forget something important, it’s not exactly life-threatening (but can be), and it’s not constant like amnesia.

But it’s real. Like the other day when I was driving my kids home from after-care, on a route I follow almost every single day, and for a second or two I completely spaced out and forgot where I was going. Although I’ve been suffering from bouts of forgetfulness since my first pregnancy with Jada 7 years ago,  this particular occurrence scared me the most. Like many other people (even those without kids) I’ve driven in the wrong direction before, like when we moved house and I’d drive to the old house for a good few days thereafter before my brain finally caught on that that’s no longer where we lived. That’s pretty normal and can happen to anyone.

But you know something’s not quite right up there when you leave the keys in the door and go out for a whole afternoon, or you leave the stove on throughout the night – not just once or twice.

After 7 years of being a mom, and going through these and many other mishappenings, I’m convinced that with the birth of each of my three children, I’ve lost a little more function in my brain. Or have I just become busier and therefore more distracted?

Biological or social?

While some moms may have it worse than others, and while porridge brains have not yet been added to the medical journals, it most certainly is there. Often it helps to speak directly to the source if you need more convincing. Bring up the conversation with the mommies at school, or in the doctor’s waiting room, or while enjoying a braai. You’ll soon discover you are not going nuts, you are perfectly imperfect, and that we’re all in this mess together.

So what is causing this strange pregnancy phenomenon?

Medical tests from various doctors around the world have come up with the following explanations:

Biological reasons include the production of more progesterone and estrogen during pregnancy which are hormones that affect all kinds of neurons in the brain; huge surges of oxytocin during birth, which is necessary for the uterus to contract and the body to produce milk, and also affects the brain circuits; and deficiency of iron in the body during pregnancy which, if too low, can cause forgetfulness.

Social reasons include not getting enough sleep and multitasking, in which state nobody’s memory is good, and your priorities change.

Until more research is done on the subject of porridge brains and while we all continue our journey in blissful forgetfulness, “remember” to write things down, get more sleep, and try not to be so stressed and anxious all the time.

Love,

 

 

Image credit: thementalwizzard, 

Sources: WebMD, LivingandLoving

Inspiration, Lifestyle

I lost my bravery when I became a mom

September 6, 2016

Of cause you would think it’s the other way around, that becoming a mother actually makes you braver and more courageous, tough as nails and fearless, gives you nerves of Steele, but every time I pushed out another 3.5 kg from my uterus and gave birth to a precious life, a little bit of my bravery died.

Where first I couldn’t bear to see someone hurt another child, whether physically or emotionally, abused kids has now been added to my long list of phobias. Its a hurt so hard to explain I am unable to put the feeling into words. I am unable to describe the magnitude of the pain that ripples through me when an adult touches a child with anything less than love and tenderness, but if I had to, soul crushing would come close. Heartbroken now seems like a walk in the park.

Almost a year ago I made the mistake to watch the movie Sarah’s key. I cursed my husband throughout the movie for not warning me what it was about. That night I cried and prayed myself to sleep. If you are brave enough and more fearless than me, then you should definitely see it. I knew at the time of watching that it was only a movie, but being a mother, the reality of it became so vivid that I imagined my own kids in those concentration camps. This is what makes motherhood so indescribably hard. You can never again experience anything bad without putting your kids into that same picture.

You call me Superhuman. Supermom. But if I could choose  only one super power, I’d choose to have the ability to keep every child, on this God given planet, safe.

I am scared. Not for MY life and what could happen to ME, but for the well-being and safety of my children. I realise I’ve started praying more often and with more conviction since the day my first child was born six years ago. Because I love God, and also because I know, without a shadow of doubt, there’s no other way to protect my family.

Where once I reveled in peace and quiet, I now go into a fit of panic if I don’t hear my kids’ constant bickering with one another while playing around the house, or if a minute goes by that I don’t hear the word “mommy” being shouted for one reason or the other. When those cold chills run down my spine and I break into a cold sweat, my nerves can only be calmed once the familiar chaos continues.

When I was younger I thought spiders were the scariest things on earth. Now the scariest thing for me is allowing my kids out of my sight, which is crazy because how do I keep them locked up. How do I keep my kids from playing outside, or from going to school, or from spending weekends at grandma’s?

I don’t. So, I kiss my kids goodbye every morning just after 5am, before I make my way to work.

In that moment I am aware that in just a couple of hours their dad will drop them off at school and they will bravely face another long day without me there to keep them safe. I don’t need to be there. I can’t. Tonight they will assure me again with beaming smiley faces how much fun they had and excitedly tell me of all that they’ve learned.

I then softly kiss three pairs of cheeks and hurry out the front door to face another day in pursuit of bravery.

Love,

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Entreprenuerial moms, Inspiration, Lifestyle, Slider

Have you ever been on a date with your Son or Daughter?

June 7, 2016

Once I drove past my neighbour’s driveway as she was standing by her car in an evening dress, tying her six-year-old son’s tie. She was going on a date with her son, just the two of them. It was absolutely beautiful to see.

Have you ever been on a date with your son or daughter?

Working parenthood is a juggle. We need to acknowledge this and find a rhythm that helps us find a special moment with each of our children every day. “Go on a date with your firstborn child when your second arrives” is advice the headmistress of our son’s nursery school gives: “Your bringing that baby home is like your husband coming home one night saying, ‘Hi Honey! Look at my new wife! I’ve brought her home to join our family!’ expecting you to love her. If you can find the time to do special activities separately with each of your children this will smooth over most of the challenging situations life throws at you.”

It is also important to focus on behavior rather than on the child. Saying “yes” more often than “no” can turn a situation around. If you are consistently giving your children a negative response, saying “no” for each and every action they take, they will eventually stop responding. However, a positive take on a situation can redirect a child very effectively, with minimal stress on you and them. Try to praise them when they do things right and play down the things they get wrong. In general, children will tend to do whatever gets them attention – negative or positive.

What would she say to a new parent who is leaving through the Honeybee gate for work, his or her little one left in the nursery for the first time? Her tone, as expected, is kind but with a depth of wisdom only achievable through years of working with families: “I know this is hard. I know you are feeling guilty. But please, don’t. You are giving your kids a gift by bringing them to a wonderful school. Your children will learn and grow and thrive by being around other kids. Only, when you are with them, please make a point to try and take them on a date just you and them… and make it special.”

Now, we would love to hear from you… have you ever been on a date with your son or daughter?  Do you have some awesome suggestions on what to do to connect better with your kids? The truth is that we’re all in this together and your comments could help thousands of mums around the world to discover new ways to connect with their kids and, more importantly, realize that they are not alone in the challenges they face…

If you found this article helpful, we would be honoured if you would share it with your friends via email or social media, sign up for the Working Mothers Expo VIP Waiting List and book your diaries for an event you will not want to miss

See you soon!

The Working Mothers Expo, brought to you in partnership with MiWay Life, brings together everything a working mother needs under one roof on 4-6 November at the Sandton Convention Centre.  Take a step back from your hectic schedule, make some time to reflect, hear an inspiring speaker, indulge in some retail therapy and connect with other working mothers. We would like to create some dedicated time in your schedule that is all about you.

It’s time to take a moment. Join our VIP Waiting List

If you would like to inquire about sponsoring or exhibiting at the event, please email us and we will send you all the details you need.

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Article and image by Janice Windt: Blogger and founder of The Working Mothers Expo

 

Entreprenuerial moms, Founding Moms, Inspiration, Lifestyle, Slider

Celebrating Mothers of Africa!

May 28, 2016

I have long since wondered about the definition of Motherhood. I have read about it, arranged coffee meet-ups with other moms, arranged playgroups, curiously accepted kids birthday party invitations (moms would put into my kids school bags) just for the opportunity to get to know the other moms. I have started this blog for fabulous moms, most of my friends are moms and I work with many, many moms.

The conclusion to my theory on the definition of Motherhood was that there is no one definition to this phenomenon. We are just way too dynamic to be categorized, for we are ever changing and what we do, for our family and others, are never ending.

This is also what the inspirational book “Celebrating Mothers of Africa” has confirmed once again. The book compiled and written by mom, managing director and founder of Working Moms Expo and fellow blogger, Janice Windt, focus on Courage, Work life integration, Happiness, Self care, Motherhood, Perfection and so much more. Be prepared to be inspired by the wise words of women and moms around the country, facing the same everyday challenges as you and I.

 

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Read the complete book on Celebrating Mothers of Africa here:  Celebrating Mothers of Africa – Working Mothers Expo_2016

Moms, stay fabulous and have courage!