Nicolette Writes

Professional Freelance Writer and Stay-at-Home Mom

Archive for the category “Random”

Mindfulness


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Wowzers! Is that even a word?! I haven’t blogged in over a year! For so long I have thought that I have given up my writing career to be a full-time mom… but I think I am not finished yet.

Besides being a stay-at-home-mom, my laptop was also kaput and I haven’t been able to access my blog. Well, my birthday is tomorrow, and my husband got me a new MacBook Air! Can you hear me screaming?! Just to justify such an expensive gift, my previous MacBook was TEN YEARS old and the guy at the Apple Store actually laughed when I took it out 😉

So here I am. Pretty much the same Nicolette, just a little bit wiser I think. I have been in therapy for my Depression this last year, and I have learned significant coping mechanisms. At the moment, however, the black dog has got quite a solid grip on my ankle again, and the tool I am trying to whack it over the head with is MINDFULNESS.

Mindfulness seems to be all the new hype – if you are into self-help reading and minimalism and all those kind of things like I am.

Here are the two mindfulness techniques I am currently TRYING (it’s not easy) to apply to make life with the black dog bearable:

1.) Thoughts are just visitors. Last night I read this quote: “There is only one meditation – the rigorous refusal to harbor thought.” – Nisargadatta Maharaj. In other words, when my black dog thoughts come to torture my mind, I tell them, ‘Okay, here you are, I see you, and there’s the door, there you go again.’ I literally picture the thoughts coming in, and then a door opening in my mind and me letting them out. I try to NOT entertain these visitors. Here you are, there’s the door, there you go. Perhaps it sounds silly… but it does help.

2.) I try to not think about yesterday, I try to not think about tomorrow or anything I still have to do – I try to become aware of what is going on in the moment. I hear the clock ticking, I hear a car outside. I love the look of my new laptop. I see Rebecca cutting up a piece of paper. She looks cute. I become present. And I try to remain present. This is possibly the most difficult part of mindfulness for me.

So that’s that for now – this is just where I am at right now. Please share any stories of mindfulness that you want to!

Oh yes – I forgot a third mindfulness thing that I am trying:

3.) Look up. Look up from the mess going on inside your head and see where you can help. Anyone. In any small way. Email your church to find out about needs in your community. Offer to drive an old person somewhere. Buy a friend something small you know will cheer them up. Walk puppies at the shelter. Make something for someone. Buy food for someone. Look up from the mess in your head that only makes you bleed, and stop someone else’s wound from bleeding. This actually helps me the most.

Love to you all
Nicolette
Picture for attention 😉

US School Shootings – What Happened??


I can’t help but cry as I read articles on the recent gun shooting in the US – seems like twenty 6 to 7 year olds were killed. Just imagine – you send your excited 6 year old to school the morning, then this happens. One feels so powerless to make a change in this world… I think you can only try to make a difference in the space where you are – there where you are planted and to wherever you travel, otherwise the pain you will carry will be too overwhelming. But then again – mourn with those who mourn… so let me continue my crying.

We can but only change the world where we are planted...

We can but only change the world where we are planted…

Our golden girl Caster Semenya still faces gender controversy


Caster Semenya’s athletic achievements have been surrounded by much controversy. There are those who question her gender and feel she might have an unfair advantage in her running (see http://www.ibtimes.com/articles/371766/20120808/caster-semenya-gender-test-olympic-debut-photo.htm)

After her 800m win last night, putting her through to the 2012 Olympic finals, I wondered whether there were still any issues regarding her gender or whether the matter has been laid to rest.

So I ‘twittered’ her. I typed ‘Semenya’ into Search, and here are some of the horrible comments I have found (last nights tweets):

“I don’t want to hear any more jokes about Caster Semenya, that chick worked her balls off to get where she is today.”

“So wat do ya say 2 casta semenya…happy women’s day or happy fadaz dae…?”

“I hate to think this man semenya can take our medal.”

“I hope Semenya trips on her dick and falls.”

“Don’t forget to support our boy Caster Semenya”

Now… all of this does not raise the question for me of whether Semenya is male or female or both or whatever… rather, comments like these (and there are many more and many that are far worse than the few examples I have given), show that we have some scary, malicious and evil people out there…

What KIND of person (and I repeat, WHAT KIND OF PERSON) actually feels comfortable tweeting these things? Can people really be that hard-hearted? I mean, if you wonder whether she is male or female, it’s okay if you say to a friend, ‘Hey, I don’t know about that Semenya…’. But to tweet how you “wonder whether we will see Caster Semenya’s dick in her spandex?”

As I read through these tweets, I immediately thought of a song by John Prine (whose songs I have come to know thank to my hubby!) :

“Some humans ain’t human,
Some people ain’t kind”

I can only conclude, with regards to the Semenya Saga: ‘Some humans ain’t human, some people ain’t kind…’

My Help :-)


Bongi is the lady who helps to clean our house once every week. We have a good relationship. Or so I think… who knows what she really thinks of me – this young girl (younger than she is) with the nice blue BMW, who lives in a nice warm house, with her baby, hardworking husband and a dog (who has more blankets than some of her friends probably have).

I try to share as much as I can with Bongi. And I always feel quite good that I am giving Bongi things to take home.

Then the other day, I was showing Bongi the new blue plates I bought and I told her that I have put the old plates in a box for her to take home.

She was grateful, but her reaction caught me unaware: ‘Yo, Nicolette, you waste money!’ She didn’t say it angrily. It was just a statement (perhaps there was a tone of disbelief).

I didn’t know what to say. I give her all these things, and her thoughts are that I am wasting money?

I guess I just always assumed she must be happy with all the things I give her. I am the good, white benefactor (he he, we don’t want to admit it, but I think this is how we often think of ourselves!). Suddenly, giving didn’t feel so good anymore. Was I wasting money?

I have given the situation a lot of thought, and I have come to the conclusion that it is not that I waste money – I buy with money that we have, and I buy at PEP, JET, and Mr Price, in stead of at Woollies, Truworths and Foschini (well some times I do splurge a bit at these places).

But I have learned that there are people who cannot imagine that you would buy plates if you already have plates; people to whom it seem absurd to buy a R100 mobile for a baby room, just because it is pretty.

Bongi and Alex

I am certainly NOT saying we are not allowed to buy these pretty things if we can buy them. Let’s just never forget the Bongis in life. I guess that’s why I often decide to give the (irritating!) car guard that R2 or R5, even if I am CERTAIN nothing would have happened to my car while I was gone. Because I have the nice blue plates.

Love,
Nicolette

In my arms!

I think I’m becoming a mom…


I think I’m becoming a mom…

Okay, so of course I AM a mom – I have adorable, little Alex. But I’ve never really had that mom-feeling. Until yesterday.

I was having a conversation with a group of friends, and while drinking my coffee and having normal conversation, I was successfully managing to keep Alex content and happy at the same time. I was comfortably moving him from my knee to my hip to the floor (as I held him up while he tried standing). I was relaxed. He was happy, I was happy.

How on earth did this happen? Overnight?
‘Time’, dearest new moms. You will get there. Remember my last post? I was about to crack. https://nicolettewrites.wordpress.com/2012/07/10/im-about-to-crack/ And it felt like everyone but myself could calm and make my baby happy.

If your baby is about one or two months now and you feel that you are not going to make it – hold out… you will get there! I’m not saying I ‘arrived’ in any way! I know Alex will soon ‘knock me over’ with something new, haha! There will always be ups and downs.

Take it ONE day at a time. Or no, not even one day – take it MOMENT for moment. And with time, it will get easier. It’s going to be fun:-D

Love,
Nicolette
ps: If you are at a stage now where you are not getting a lot of sleep, please read this post: (Especially if you believe in SLEEP TRAINING, which I strongly condemn!!)
http://nurshable.com/2012/07/19/the-wio-wait-it-out-method-of-sleep-training/

I’m About To Crack… :-)


So here is what’s been going on in this mommy’s mind lately…

Alex has been going through a fussy phase (I know there are a few developmental [fussy?] phases that babies apparently go through – there’s a book on it called, The Wonder Weeks). www.thewonderweeks.com

As a result, I constantly find myself having that ‘I’m going to crack’ feeling. I feel terrible for just saying this – I really love my baby (even when saying this I feel bombarded by an inner voice saying, ‘Do you? Do you really? How can you feel like ‘cracking up’ when he is crying and still say you love him?!’ These feelings are exactly what this post is about. But wait, I’m interrupting myself).

Last night I had to count to ten before picking Alex up. My sweet boy Alex with his big brown (gorgeous!) eyes. Maybe he is teething…? But he is only three months and seems rather to be going through a phase of separation anxiety. I tell you, the moment I leave the room (or his eye sight!), he starts screaming for me. After a few days of this, from 6am to about 6pm at home alone with him every day, I think you get that ‘I’m going to crack feeling’.

I say ‘I think’, because I am having a battle with guilt. I hear all these voices saying: ‘Stop complaining! There are so many women out there who would do anything to have a little baby!’ ‘You are so ungrateful – be careful that he doesn’t get taken from you’ What if God does punish me (I know, I know, God doesn’t work that way… but still…) and He takes away Alex overnight? What if something happens to Alex? So I find myself praying the whole day as I am faced with a cranky Alex: ‘Please, Lord, please don’t take him from me. I really don’t know what it is with me, Lord. I love him! I really do! I just feel like I’m going to crack…’

This, then, is where I am currently at. Feeling close to ‘cracking’, but fearing and feeling ashamed of my feelings…

What is a mommy to do? :-/

First-time Mom


Baby Alex is here!

I never knew my life would change this much. And I never knew adapting to being a mom would be this hard.

I guess I have always been – or no, wait… not ‘I guess’, but I AM an idealist. Even Mayers and Briggs agree;-)

I was pretty sure I would spend most of my time cuddling baby, bathing, and pampering him; dressing him up in cute clothes and showing him off to people while having a cappuccino at Mug and Bean. I just always assumed that if baby cried, all tears would stop the moment I picked him up – because I am his MOTHER. No one else would be able to comfort him the way I do. His face would light up at seeing me.

What a shock to ‘my system’. If Alex cries, I rarely get him to stop – unless I put a bottle in that little mouth or succeed in patting out a wind (which I’m horrible at!) The face of his mother doesn’t work like a magic pill – in fact, he often gives me a very angry frown! Going for a cappuccino is extremely stressful, as I never know when Alex will start crying and IF I will succeed in calming him down. As for dressing baby in cute clothes – they mostly turn yellow within a few minutes from getting them on that cute body (milk, poop, pee… not to mention how he screams when I dress him!)

Despite this despondent feeling, I have realised that if anything had to happen to Alex, it will tear my heart apart. I truly cannot imagine my life without him, even though he has only been with us for about three weeks (and nine months in my ‘tummy’!) I love him, but this doesn’t mean I am not struggling to cope with my new role. I thought I would be the angel God had chosen for this baby. I’m sure God DID choose me to be his mom… I just don’t see myself as an angel… I’m rather the mother in her pajamas, breast pads, bed hair and glasses (who has time to put contacts in?!). I hope I’ll be enough, Alex. I hope I can be the best mother you can have… because right now, I’m not sure I am getting it right.

Love,
Nicolette

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