What 2019 has taught me….


Well with a year (and a decade) finished and a new one starting it’s hard not to reflect. It’s easy to sit and go through all the negatives, should haves and could haves. It’s easy to be disappointing in what you didn’t achieve or didn’t do. Instead let’s take a look at what we did do or why something’s fell by the wayside rather than striping down every detail into negativity and disappointment.

So here’s what 2019 has taught me this year.

  • You can survive on little on no sleep. I mean thankfully now Charlotte mostly sleeps through but some days I’ve managed to drag my butt through the day with¬† a lot less and it wasn’t as bad as I thought.
  • I’m stronger mentally than I thought. I mean I did a 10k and with training your body will always be physically able but my mind gets bored. I somehow managed to figure out the whole mind over matter thing long enough to run/jog/walk 10k (and I actually might do it again).
  • Sometimes you’ve just got to do you. It’s hard being a mum or even in a serious relationship because you struggle to put yourself anywhere near the top of you to-do list. This year I learnt I can’t pour from an empty cup and it’s ok to step back for your own sake.
  • Pilates won’t kill me. Ok this may sound odd but I am not flexible, bendy and I struggle to do calm. For the sake of my back (my back endures a lot from my job) I decided to give Pilates a try and I’ve been to some classes. Although I’m no pro, it’s not as difficult as I first thought so as long as it’s good for me and I like it then we will be bending and breathing through 2020.
  • I love my job. So after a year off although daunting to go back to work, I’m so glad I did. Hats of to the stay at home mum’s but I really love what I do and I missed it.
  • Moving house is hard. Not just physically hard but emotionally hard. We moved from where we brought out daughter home to, to where she will grow up and got to school. I had no idea that I would get so caught up in the practical that the emotional would sweep me off my feet (I still can’t go back to our old Street yet).
  • I have the best partner. It’s unbelievable true. I’m no easy woman to rub alongside but somehow he manages very well. He literally has my whole heart, he’s my sanity and the voice of reason when my brain can’t do reason. He picks me up when I fall and he loves me when I’m at my worst. Best of all though, he’s the best daddy to our little girl.

2020 will be what it will be. I suppose I hope that this year I will do some of what I wanted to achieve last year but I’m just gonna go with the flow (on a controlled and we’ll thought out way).¬†

From the exhausted mummy and her eye bags

We moved house…..

So it’s been a month since the big move. It already feels like this is home. I remember my mum saying that when they walked into the house they bought when they got married they just both knew. Weirdly I think I felt the same when we bought this house. Gary made a comment about Charlotte learning to ride her bike on the little extra bit of driveway and it was clear we both saw forever here.Anyway I digress.

Things I’ve learnt about moving with a one year old….

  • Packing is double as hard because they want to ‘help’ aka one thing in, everything out.
  • Throwing stuff out is so cathartic.
  • Going through all your stuff can be very emotional.
  • You question your decision daily
  • You can live with a lot less than you think.
  • The final clean will make you question your cleaning schedule.
  • It’s best if your children aren’t actually their on actual moving day (Charlotte was at nursery).
  • Try to remember you family are their to help, you can’t do it all (even if you are superwoman).
  • Pre-order an online food delivery – the last place you wanna go is the supermarket for a food shop after lugging boxes for hours.
  • Make sure that the child’s room is a priority then normal routine can be kept as close as possible.
  • Hide empty boxes, poly styrene (yes I googled the spelling), plastic – basically anything your small child can play with that they shouldn’t or will make a mess.
  • Don’t expect miracles, just be happy that you can close your new door knowing everything is in.

There are so many different ideas swishing through both mine and Gary’s heads about how we would like rooms to look or colours to paint. I think Christmas is going to be a great distraction as we are in a new build so pairing is still some time off. Getting used to the space didn’t take long but some rooms still feel a bit out of sorts which will take time for use to figure out what needs to go where.

For now we are so incredibly happy to have been able to move into what is a dream house for us. But most of all to Gary’s Aunt, Uncle and they’re girls for coming round on the first night with a chinese takeaway – including all the plates, cutlery and glasses for juice then taking the whole lot away leaving us with no dishes. You guys were the cherry on the top of our cake.

From the exhausted mummy and her eye bags

Time for some self care…..

Yesterday for the first time in more than 6 months I went and got my hair cut. I’ve been putting it off unable to justify a) the time and b) the cost. The reality it’s not that expensive and I forgot just how nice it is to have someone else wash your hair.

Self care comes in all different shapes and sizes. As a mum it’s hard to prioritize yourself. Every time I buy something for me I think about what I could have bought for her or her dad. In reality they need me to be on top form 24/7 so taking time out shouldn’t be a guilt trip – but it is. Having done a whole block with a personal trainer for myself over the summer I had claimed back a little bit of me, however, with the build up to moving house then actually moving to a new area the gym has gone out the window – in fact my membership has lapsed.

Apart from cleaning (well hinching), the vast majority of things I do for fun (yes I know it’s weird to enjoy cleaning) have slowly stopped. I can’t remember the last time I got my eyebrows waxed, it’s been a very long time since I had a massage and we’ll my hair had been forgotten til yesterday.

Now that we are begining to get settled in our new house it’s definitely time to prioritize a bit of me. Be it a face mask and an early night or re-joining a local gym, at the moment I’m not sure.It’s so difficult when life gets busy to give yourself a break. I’m very lucky that my partner is mega supportive in making sure I still get a bit of time for me which is lovely although I’m definitely my own stumbling block.

When we moved he kindly bought me Mrs Hinches activity journal which not only looks amazing but will definitely give me a bit of a kick up the bum to take 5 minutes out and sit down. Realistically my priorities will not change but realising I need a bit of me time is a start.

From the exhausted mummy and her eye bags

My brain has hit capacity…..

The phased return is now over. I’m back to work completely. Well for 3 days a week. The nursery runs are becoming the norm. All sounds pretty standard for any mum returning to work after MAT leave.

The truth. My emotions are flying about all over the place like a crazy women. I feel like a duck – above the water all is calm but underneath I’m paddling for my life. Throw in the imminent house move and well I’m sure you can imagine. My head feels like there is no switch off button. To be honest I’m pretty sure there actually isn’t a switch off button.

I was pretty excited about the prospect of getting a bit of me back when I went to work on that first day. In fact most days when I go in I am filled with joy about just doing my job. I do still love my job. I wasn’t ready to feel emotions about leaving my child. She’s fine at nursery, with her dad, with her grandparents. She’s probably having way more fun than a standard day of chores and food shopping with her mum. She’s learning new things and coming on leaps and bounds. But nothing feels quite like picking her up from nursery on a Friday and wanting to cry because i left her, She doesn’t cry. Often she would happily stay with her new little friends. Don’t get me wrong she’s never been upset (yet) about being in nursery. In fact it’s almost been too easy which may be why I’m feeling like I do. I think I’m waiting for the other shoe to drop. I’m pre preparing for her to one day get upset. This day may never come but my emotional brain is saying it will. No matter how much I think I’ll be fine the truth is I won’t be. The mummy bear will come out and I will want to do whatever it takes to make it better. The reality is that I will have tell her it’s all ok and then leave her to be consoled by the nursery staff. I will then go and cry in my car. Bloody emotions!

As for the house move…..well. It wasn’t planned. Let’s go look turned into let’s see if we can afford it. Then we did it. It’s scary. We have went all out to get a forever home. We are lucky to have a supportive family who have made getting to this point easier. With potentially only 4 weeks to go til we get the keys it’s safe to say the list in my head has never been longer. Between doing more maths than I’ve done for a long while, to plannig what can be packed now, my noggin is full. There are no vacancies for new information. I now can’t wait to be in. We have been fortunate that we’ve not actually had to wait for too long before we will be moving. It’s a new build and was on the later stages when we bought it but how people can buy from plan and wait almost years is beyond me. A couple of month almost has me full to capacity on the stress meter never mind any longer.

It’s easy to get overwhelmed when life throws everything at you all at once. If I had a magic wand life would be a fairytale with songs about feelings and dances which convey emotion. Unfortunately it is not. Coping mechanisms are not one size fits all an frankly I’m not expert as I definitely creep into bad habits when I’m stressed and anxious. At least for now it’s only temporary and then we can all just get back to normality – whatever that is.

From the exhausted mummy and her eye bags

2019….What’s the aim

I’ve decided to drop the idea of a new years resolution and I’m not the only one this year. It seems we all gets so caught up in to that we make them unachievable and find ourselves giving up quite easily. For 2019 I’ve picked some goals that I would like to achieve and I’ve actually put some thought into them rather than my usual midnight grasp at picking a resolution (after a few prosecco’s).

So what’s the aim?

Given that the bigger chunk of my maternity leave is in 2019 I think it’s important to use this time not only to make family memories with peanut and aid her development with the vast array of classes I’ve been booking like a maniac (she literally has her own calender, which is full), but also to do some good old self care (also seems to be a big theme for people 2019 plans).

Apart from my almost yearly decision to try and tame the blubber, I really want to be more positive. Recent years haven’t always gone to plan and as a result my self belief has taken a hit. Its time to start looking after me so I can look after Peanut and her dad the way they deserve. As for the skincare regime, I’ve been getting away with cheap face wipes, baby wipes and the odd face mask way too long. Before this catches up with me I need to get on top of it (I will age slowly, or at least after using every cream to stop it).

So what’s the reality?

Skin care takes time. Ive had a realisation as to why I’ve failed at this so many times, but I’m sticking with it!

I’ve signed up to a 10k for charity and I’ve started training (I am no runner, so getting on a treadmill is a challenge let alone actually doing 10k, but I will do it as the charity is close to my heart and I really do want to give back).

Memories happen in a instance so I’m going to start taking more photo’s. I have the Snapfish app on my phone which let’s your print 50 free prints (+2.99 delivery) every month. I just need to get an album to start sticking them all in. My parents took hundreds (it may even be thousands) of pictures of me when I was little and I love looking at them and I really want the same for Peanut.

Getting fitter will come (hopefully with the 10k training) and it goes hand in hand with being more positive. Being active has always been my outlet in life. The more active I am the better my mental health is and so I’m generally more positive. I struggled with both when I was pregnant due to feeling rubbish for 9 months so I’m really looking forward to the prospect of getting a little bit of the old me back. So far, so good – watch this space.

So here’s to 2019…..hit me with your best shot!

From the exhausted mummy and her eye bags