Tag Archives: patience

a little bit of gratitude

25 Sep

A little over a year ago I was completely ignorant of the magnitude of happiness that the little guy outside would bring to our lives. The day I held the positive pregnancy test in my hands I started crying and crying and crying and the only one that saved me that day was MY person, MY ROCK, my sister Alex. I honestly don’t have a clue what I would do without her.

Alex was thrilled. She was ecstatic. She was out of this world happy. She tried to calm me down by saying all the right things and she even managed to make me take a momentary glimpse at the light at the end of the tunnel. She stayed calm and reassured me that everything was going to be alright. 

Well, she was DAMN right. After a trying and very difficult pregnancy, everything DID turn out alright.

I would like to dedicate this post to the people who stood by me and whose gestures of kindness helped me in one way or another to fight my inner demons and simply gave me hope. HOPE is a wonderful thing. HOPE is essential to leading a happy life. HOPE is priceless.

A big shout out to my enthusiastic sister and my loving hubby, who always encouraged me that I COULD do THIS.

Special thanks to my mom who showed empathy, compassion and patience when mine was running out and to my mother in law who went into the trouble of putting properly cooked food on our table, every single day.

From my real life friends who went out of their way to help me (thank you Iro & Daphne for that surprise delivery of burger & fries-you seriously MADE MY DAY) to my fellow blogger friends whose words of encouragement made all the difference (Matt, you might be right, he might turn out to be my favourite after all).

Thank you.

Life is good. Life is NOT PERFECT. It is blissful, chaotic, beautiful, frantic, challenging, stressful but most importantly BEAUTIFUL.

Yes, LIFE IS BEAUTIFUL

Until next time

love

t

happy

32

20 May

I am almost there.

Officially I still have 8 weeks left. Realistically I will be ecstatic if I get another 4. Both my children decided to leave the premises at 36 weeks gestation and I have been holding on to this little guy tight ever since I had one of the most terrifying days of my life when I nearly lost him right before Christmas.

This has been, and still is, one hell of a ride. A roller coaster of emotions. At times I felt broken, I saw no hope, I thought we had hit a dead end. I felt like there was no way out. But you know what? There is (almost) always a light that will shine through. The impossible becomes possible. And what I feared would tear N. & me apart, made us actually a lot stronger. I feel more love, appreciation, respect for him than ever before. He picked me up when I fell down. Each. And. Every. Single. Time. He said the right words at the wrong time. He was there. 24/7. He was my rock. I am confident that I (we) wouldn’t be here if it hadn’t been for his support. This is what LOVE is all about you guys.

Cheesy? YOU BET. But, let’s not forget that I am still pregnant and I have the right to overindulge in the emotional outpouring of my soul. OK??

I have (finally) reached the stage where I am genuinely happy about #thelittleguyinside. I am confident that we took the right decision when we decided to play along the very scary (at least in the beginning) game of fate and keep him. I see the anticipation and joy in my kids faces when they ‘help’ in the preparation for their sibling. I also see the first signs of jealousy but I choose to look away. I know what’s coming and I know it will be exhausting and draining and challenging but also BREATHTAKING, BEAUTIFUL & FULFILLING.

I CAN’T WAIT!

Until next time (please keep your fingers crossed he will stay put at least for the next 4 weeks)

love

tatu

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it’s a…

20 Jan

BOY

I turned and looked at N. and saw the huge smile on his face. He was glowing.

What did you want? my gynecologist asked me.

I want a healthy and strong baby. I didn’t care about the gender. I was just starting to let go of the fear of losing it and slowly beginning to ‘enjoy’ the idea of no3.

Well… If I want to be 100% truthful, I secretly wished for a girl. So did my sister Alex. But I am happy for Yiannis who kind of threatened me that if I wasn’t going to have a boy, I should just leave the whole holding on to this difficult pregnancy all together.

Why did I prefer having a girl? For the most irrational and biased reason in the world. I know you are not supposed to label your children (good luck with that) and you are not supposed to compare them either (more luck with that one) but…Yiannis has been my thunder and Iliana has been my sunshine ever since they made their first appearance in our world. 

I have struggled to find the RIGHT way to communicate with my son. I can reassure you I have experienced the epic fails of the different WRONG ways I thought I would be able to handle certain situations. Now, after 6 1/2 years I have come much closer to finding out what works with him and what doesn’t. I still lack the abundant patience and the energy I need to work at it/with him everyday, 24/7.  But, what I have come to realize is that by counting the number of times I fail at it, I don’t do anyone a favor. I need to cherish the few times that I do make it work and take it from there.

‘Don’t hold a grudge’ my brother in law told me yesterday when he visited. Its poisonous for everyone involved. That was by far THE BEST ADVICE I have ever been given.

LEARN TO LET GO and just START OVER.

This is what I will do. Its not going to be easy. But its definitely worth a try.

Until next time

love

tatu

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N. treated me to some burger and fries after our last visit at the doctor. I am sure he did not mean that when he said I should continue with my bed rest but boy, that felt GOOD!

it’s not you

13 Dec

its me.

I am in a dark place. I have been there for a while now. I acknowledge the fact that I need to kick myself in the butt and get the hell out of there, if I ever want to feel OK again. I have been drowning in self pity, I have been beating myself up that I have failed as a parent already twice, why should I make another child suffer (yes, THAT bad), I have been nasty and cynical to the people I love, I have exploded more than a few times and I have shed more tears in the last few weeks than I have in my entire life (totally exaggerated of course).

I wasn’t planning to leave this hell place anytime soon, I was expecting that I would magically snap out of it and see the light. But this is a load of crap my friends. Sitting back and waiting for things to change is just plain stupid, cause you know what? It doesn’t work like that.

If you are depressed and you feel that the whole world is closing in on you, you are shutting everyone else out. Especially your loved ones. And you expect for them to understand. If they love you, they will understand. Right??

Well…That is partly true. They will TRY to understand but they can not REALLY understand, because they (thankfully) are not experiencing what you are. So, they will be patient. And say the wrong things at the worst time. Because you are in such a miserable state that nothing will make you feel better. And you won’t see the light cause you really DON’T WANT to see the light. You want to continue feeling like crap because you think that this is your safe place, where everything sucks. And it’s easy to stay there. You don’t have to make any efforts whatsoever. 

The thing is though that the longer you stay there, the harder it is to get out. It really is a vicious circle.

You might get lucky. You might have someone tell you the truth like it is, not sugar coated. And in the beginning you don’t listen to anything they have to say, because you are in denial. But then, you might look at it from a different angle. If you manage to let your self pity thoughts go, you might see what is truly there. The TRUTH. Things are not really THAT BAD.

So, my friends. I have faith. I will get better. I see it now.

Until next time

love

tatu

p.s. Thank you N.K & Y.M.

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if you get easily disgusted, don’t read this

24 Aug

While we were vacationing in Pelion a couple of weeks ago, my sister and my cousin had the insane magnificent idea to go swimming on the beach of the busiest, widely known, beautiful beach of Mylopotamos.

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N. & Ch. (Alex’s husband), tried to talk them out of it, giving them multiple reasons why this would probably be the worst idea of the whole 7 day trip, but they were so persistent, they just decided to go along. Mistake No 1.

After a full breakfast, Mistake No 2, I had the splendid idea to switch places with Ch. & ride along with Alex & the girls (Mistake No 3). I do remember my last words to Ch. before I sat on the co-drivers seat: If Iliana complains that she has tummy ache, stop the car and we will switch places, ok? Ch. gave me the my-mind-is-totally-somewhere-else-and-I-will-nod-just-to-get-you-off-my-back look and said OK. I SHOULD HAVE KNOWN.

Half way through the 1 1/2 hour torturous ride up & down the mountain to the beach, N. stopped the car.

S H I T.

A semi panicked, semi guilty looking N. exited the car.

– WHAT THE HELL HAPPENED? I asked him. Of course I already knew the answer to that.

– Iliana just threw up.

– Oh no. No, no, no, no…If you know me, you know I can handle almost anything related to kid’s typical illnesses (sore throat, ear infections, bronchitis, you name it). Almost. The whole seeing what my kid just ate in detail accompanied by the most disgusting smell in the world thing I don’t deal with, well.

Numb and with the most disgusted look on my face I was staring at the 3-year-old who was crying like hell covered in the full morning’s breakfast, mumbling something about men being useless…

Thankfully my sis came to my rescue. She managed to calm Iliana down, clean her up (wet wipes inventor-I love you), put her dress and the 2 Barbies who just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time into a plastic bag and into the trunk and pretended she didn’t mind. Oh yes, the whole puke-aversion thing runs in the family.

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we found a waterfall and tried washing everything under the crystal cold water that was coming down the mountain: including 3-year-old Iliana

Needless to say the already way too long drive to the beach got an hour extension and when we finally arrived at 3pm at the much awaited beach we realized we had to park 1 km away from the 300 steps which would lead us to it only to share it with another 1000 people who had the same dumb idea.

Tired, nauseous & fed up we took the absolute necessary things (or so we thought) and started to walk towards our destination. Nobody dared to say anything as we all felt like fusing time bombs who were just about to go off with the teeny – tiny – bit of stupid comment.

When we finally arrived at the beach, we discovered that there was no space left for 9 people so we squeezed our belongings together and shoved them next to some rocks convincing each other that, and I quote ‘we are so lucky, we found shade’, ignoring the fact that we had just carried an umbrella & a tent for 1 km and 300 steps.

The kids managed to stop whining & fussing as soon as they hit the water and N. & I decided to take turns in staying with Iliana as she didn’t really feel like swimming (can you blame her?)

After a couple of drama-less hours had passed I decided to leave everyone behind and go for the long-awaited swim in the sea. It was great. Worth it? Definitely not, but still I tried convincing myself that it was great.

When I returned to the gang, N. & Alex seemed eager to share with me the latest incident of the day.

Iliana had suddenly felt the need to pooh (after she had eaten two dozens of grapes, Mistake No 4) and thought to share it with the other 1000 people on the beach by shouting out: I HAVE KAKA!!!!! A painful realization: We had forgotten THE SINGLE MOST IMPORTANT THING OF ALL: the potty.

-SO? what did you do??? I was smiling….Finally, something that happened without my presence.

– She shitted in a plastic bag.

– Oh great! still smiling

– And while we were praising ourselves that we had brilliantly mastered the crisis, wiped her clean and threw away the only plastic bag we had, she shouted: I HAVE MORE!!!

– hahahahahahaha (ironic, right)

– And then we took the huge bag of chips (crisps if you are British) we had just licked clean and let her finish in there.

– Honey, I am proud of you!

Until next time

love

tatu

why don’t you have another baby, mom?

4 Jul

A few days ago while I was driving my kids to IKEA and daydreaming of the next two children-free hours (yes, I do leave my kids at the children’s play area and stroll around the store for TWO HOURS ALONE=HEAVEN), I got nostalgic for the days when they were still little.

Mom: Yianni, I found a few pictures of you from when you were two years old and you were soooooooooooooooooo unbelievably cute. You were the sweetest little boy on earth. You even had curls, lots of them (he had these incredible curls which I refused to cut off which often resulted in him mistakenly being called a girl – I left this information out – obviously).

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Yiannis: Curls?? No….(sort of blushing, extremely proud for the title I had just given him). Mom, I need to see these. Please show them to me when we get home, ok?

Mom: Sure, honey. Look at you now, all grown up. Going into first grade this year. I can’t believe how time has flown (not counting the zillion shitty moments when I pleaded with God to take me through this parenting ordeal as fast & as sane as possible).

Yiannis: What do you mean mom?

Mom: Oh honey, you grow up too fast. One minute your are small and helpless and the next you re off to (ok, not college) big kids school.

Yiannis: I have an idea. Have another baby, mom.

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For all intents and purposes I should have probably paused for a while and told my kids in a sweet, calm and loving voice that that probably wouldn’t be such a great idea. Instead in a semi aggressive way I replied: 

Mom: NO, honey. I won’t. 

Yiannis: Why not mom?

Mom: I can’t afford another baby right now. WE can’t afford one right now.

Yiannis: What do you mean mom?

What I really wanted to say: If I had another baby right now I would probably be sent away to the mental institution but then I thought this MIGHT be too harsh for them so I used my grown up and mature voice to give them the logical explanation why we have decided to call it quits with No3.

Mom: You see honey, if we had another baby right now, we would have to do some changes. You would have to change schools. We would have to buy another car, you would have to share everything with him/her. Most importantly I would have less time for you & your sister. Especially in the beginning, babies need their mommy’s attention ALL THE TIME. I would no longer have the time I have for you two anymore. Would you like that?

Yiannis: NO MOM!

Iliana: NO MOM!

You see? Even my kids think it’s a bad idea 😉

Until next time

love

tatu

3 chauvinists and 2 parenting fails

11 Apr

I knew my day was off to a bad start when I spent the first half hour of the very early morning in the bathroom trying every parenting technique in the book to convince Yiannis to pee in the cup for his annual blood and urine examination. I think the I-will-slap-the-pee-out-of-you-if-I-have-to did the trick.

I then dragged his very hungry and thirsty little ass to the Social Security Organization to renew our family health book only to encounter Mr Chauvinist no 1 treating me as an imbecile for not understanding the 156th change in the renewal procedures.

After making us wait painfully for 25 minutes for no reason whatsoever, he practically threw the health-book in my face and told me that I had insufficient documents. It was 08:30 in the morning and I was already starting to lose my patience. I left frustrated and angry and remembered why I despise going to all Greek public social services.

While driving to the clinic for Yiannis’s  blood test Mr too-old-to-drive-let-alone-have-a-drivers-licence Chauvinist No 2 forced me to reverse my car when he misjudged the distance between our two cars and almost crashed into mine. He then slowly passed my car, lowered his window and started swearing at me for no apparent reason. Poor Yiannis heard more swear words in the one sentence the grandpa articulated than he has heard in his entire life.

The first tears of the day were shed.

A few minutes later I pulled myself together, entered the clinic with Yiannis, handed over the pee in the cup only to be told that he actually didn’t need a urine test. G R E A T. The whole parenting fail had been for nothing.

We returned home to cranky Iliana who was trying to deal with the lack of sleep and too much TV (fatal combination – I can reassure you). After inhaling a toast in milliseconds (have I ever told you I use food as comfort??) I played the referee between the siblings who were out to get one another and mainly THEIR MOM (or so I thought).

I tried to reason with them, it didn’t work. I tried yelling, it didn’t work either (it never does). I tried threatening that I would not take them with me to the local farmers market, it didn’t work either. In my last attempt to get their attention I turned into Cruella and started hitting the trash bin. Not only did it not work, I now have a semi broken trash bin.

We avoided each other for half an hour. It worked. I apologized and we hugged and then I tried explaining to them that I am not having one of the best days and they kept on saying: mama, es max nix! Oh but it did. I felt awful. I felt guilty. I decided to move on. I didn’t have the time or energy for self loathing. I left the house with the kids and went fruit and vegetable shopping.

In the late afternoon I kissed my kids goodbye, left them with my mother in law and headed to Yiannis’s school for a parent teacher meeting. I was tired and sad but I was thankful that I didn’t have to deal with bedtime as I was confident that I would commit the 3rd parenting fail of the day.

3 Minutes later I was pulled over by the traffic police.

‘License, registration & insurance’ were the orders of Mr Chauvinist no 3 (and worst of all). S H I T. The insurance paperwork had failed to reach our address on time (no surprise at all if one thinks of the lack of Greek postal efficiency) and although properly insured I was lacking the evidence to prove it. I tried explaining Mr Scumbag that and showed him the email of the insurance. Not only did I fail to convince him of my innocence I was ordered out of my car and threatened to be ripped off my licence plate & driver’s license should I not comply.

I approached cop no2, handed over my papers and tried hard NOT to completely lose the tiny amount of patience I had left. I was given 2 tickets. One was for 10 EURO for not carrying the insurance papers and the other one was for 500 EUROS for the lack of proving I do have an insurance. You see we still live in the Stone Age where police cars are NOT online with the system to double-check  the validity of the insurance. I now have to go to the post office, pay the 10 EURO, go to the police headquarters to prove the validity of the insurance and erase the 500 EURO ticket. WHAT the fuck FOR?

I love my country but not on days like this.

Until next time

love,

tatu

chauvinists

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