The state of our Country

I have to let this out somehow, although this is not baby or child related, I have always seen this blog as therapeutic in a sense , my diary. So here goes.

All of you know that I live in South Africa .

My grandpa has recently been diagnosed with terminal cancer. He is 86 years old and had survived pancreas cancer 42 years ago (what a miracle right!?).

He has been on morphine patches for pain and all has been going well, It is very important that I tell you guys that they don’t have medical aid. In South Africa , the public health care is ridiculous, don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.

Unfortunately the patches has not been working too well lately and he has been having sooo much pain , my grandmother thought it best to rush him to the public hospital. What enfolded from here is so sad that I feel like I have been traumatized by the whole thing.

after having to wait 6 hours, he was finally admitted.The doctor assigned to his case prescribed a high dose of morphine through and IV, his pain was gone.

The next day we got there and he was completely out of it, could not speak, could not eat, could not control his bathroom visits, he had no idea where he was or what was going on. He was so scared. They put railings up on his bed because he tries to get out , and they eventually tied him down to ensure that he does not move. He had a diaper on and no clothes. When we asked the nurses (which took us about an hour to find one) why he has no clothes on, they said its easier this way to change his diaper. And that he is refusing to eat (he could not even sit up, so I don’t know how he is supposed to feed himself). We tried to accept it , the next day when we got there , he was in such an uncomfortable position that his whole neck bent side ways and he could not move because his hands were tied to tightly. No one came the whole day to check on him and move him , he mumbled for help but no one listened . I honestly just cant get this picture out my head . 3 days ago this man could walk, talk, go to the bathroom with help, eat his food, and speak properly , the only problem was that he was in pain.

When I asked a nurse to come and help me sit him up and unchain him, she came and said to me that she does not know how it works and she does not know where the nurse is who does . Needless to say we found her in the end , where they told us that he is discharged and gave us a bag of pills, no explanation, no doctor, hell, no note from a doctor, when I asked the nurse what he was given, she said to me that she does not know.

Luckily, we found an amazing company that offers home care to terminal patients and we finally got the help we needed.

NO JOKES – A few hours after getting home my grandpa could talk, he even started moving around a little bit, the next morning he could eat, feed himself even , swallow all his pills and get to the couch with some help.

I have no words as to what goes on in these hospitals, until you experience it yourself, you will never fully understand, I have no idea where to point the fingers, or if there even is enough fingers in the world to point, but it is scary. Scary that our people has that, and only that to rely on. Staff is not held accountable like in the private sector . But listen , I don’t work in the medical industry, therefore I cannot speak for the nurses or the state of care from that point of view. All I can do is share my family’s experience.

Its now been two weeks and my grandpa is safe and sound at home with a nurse and is so much happier , he is a bit traumatized by what happened as he started remembering it all , but thank the Lord he can spend what time he has left with his family .

Ps. Pic of my grandpa and my little girl

Advertisements

Dealing with my baby’s accident

So today I want to tell you guys what happened to us yesterday morning. We were in the kitchen doing our thing making coffee and my daughter was standing against the cupboard next to our cleaning lady having so much fun chatting and playing. I looked over to see what she is doing and she is fine so I boil the kettle, within a second from looking away I hear our cleaning lady and my baby start screaming. She kept screaming at me to take Paige’s pants off , then it hit me – she got a hold of something in the cupboard that is now on her leg and burning her.

At this point I must add that I never look in that cupboard since I moved in with my husband , turns out there was a bottle of drain cleaner/acid in the cupboard and the lid was not on properly, she pushed it and it poured all over her .

I picked het up rushed her to the bathroom while yelling at our cleaner to call my husband (luckily we live on the same property as out business), I put her under cold water (which is impossible with a screaming 11 month old that wont hold still because she is just in unbearable pain). My husband came, saw what it was and we grabbed her and decided to go to the hospital.

The problem is that the hospital is 70 kms away from us ! It was the worst 20 minutes (we drove 180kms/h to town) of my life , she was hysterical and so was I , I couldn’t stop shaking and crying and praying. There are just no words to explain the experience to anyone, I even vowed to move because living in the middle of nowhere when there is an emergency is just too scary (not for me, but for my little one).

Luckily we have an amazing doctor in town and we phoned her on the way , she advised us to take her straight to her and she put all the necessary treatment and bandages on, and then we stayed in the hospital for one night to keep an eye on the swelling because we live so far away.

During the stay I was crying so much that the nurses gave me a calming tablet just so that I can function, after that I kept it together quite well and did what I had to do , just focusing on Paige and getting her better and just getting through it.

The moment we got home yesterday it started hitting me , I couldn’t eat, I couldn’t sleep I was just on edge the whole time , then this morning when I saw my mother in-law I just completely broke down.

Every time I close my eyes I could hear her scream, I blamed myself so so much that I felt like it discredited every good thing I have ever done for my daughter, I felt like it was something that was so easily avoidable and I was literally right there ! A few steps away , and it still happened. The “what ifs” in this scenario are endless and blaming yourself is normal , I honestly think if you didn’t you are not a good mother haha. Getting over this guilt is a whole other ballgame, even though every person reminds you that it is not your fault and accidents happen, you are only human and dealing with this “trauma” takes time.

So here is a shoutout to all the moms that feel like they don’t even want to talk about these things because they feel shamed or guilty , I honestly know exactly how you feel . And as for the “time it takes to get over the guilt” ; I will keep you posted on that one lol.

Ps. I am posting a picture of my precious little girl just this once because she is just the strongest little girl ❤️

Picture of the wounds attached

Keep your babies safe ! Time is precious and accidents happen so quickly 🙏🏻

Sick babies make for paranoid moms

Having a sick baby is no joke, they cant tell you whats wrong, and you end up second guessing every symptom because maybe you are overreacting. Its emotionally draining, you end up actually feeling relieved when the doctor says that something is wrong because now you don’t feel like that paranoid mom you swore you would never be.

I never thought that my whole world would stop when someone is sick haha, don’t get me wrong, when my husband is sick I also worry and take care of him (as he does for me) but I don’t stay awake at night worrying if he is too cold or has a fever or is uncomfortable (the list goes on and on).

When my baby is sick it is the exact opposite, I find myself worrying constantly; should I take her to the doctor, should I go check is she is okay. Its like it takes over everything for a few days and all else seems to fade into the background, and once its over, it is as if I was also sick.

Being a mother brings out a side to me that I never knew existed, in fact, it sort of creates a new side to a person, that will only be revealed once you become a mother.

Its scary actually, to love this much ! There are no words to describe it, when they hurt, we hurt! I am lying in bed wide awake wondering if she is okay, all while knowing that I will feel like this for the rest of my life. Its wonderful and oh so daunting at the same time.

The “mom” flu

“Mom Flu is exactly like normal flu, except nobody cares”

This rings so true once you become a mother, you read this on memes and all-over social media and it’s hilarious, until it’s you!

Take me for example; I have had toothache for about a week now, and I just don’t get the time (or the babysitter) to go and get it fixed, and the pain is excruciating; but I still have to get up at 6 AM and feed my baby girl, she still has to have her naptime routine, and the dishes still need to get done, dinner still needs to get made – time waits for no mom !

Being a mom really is a 24/7 job, and I say job because it’s hard work, although incredibly rewarding, it still takes up most of your time, especially for the first few months, and you rarely get time for yourself, your marriage, or any other relationships in your life.

Whether you are sick, tired, cranky, emotional, or just having a rough day, you somehow always gather the strength to look after your baby and tend to them as if nothing is wrong and still give them the attention they deserve and need.

Since becoming a mother I could feel myself change, looking back on those first few weeks; I cant imagine how I used to get up every two hours to feed, while still recovering from my c-section, the hormones that came flooding in the first few days, struggling with breastfeeding, the paranoia of whether your baby is still breathing, is she comfortable, is she lying right, and lets not forget the sleepless nights googling about whether her amount of spit up is normal.

And I know that this is just the beginning, we haven’t even started teething, solids, potty training, sleep training, tantrums, and all the rest, and somehow I just know that I will cope with all of it because that is what being a mom is all about, you are not allowed to give up, and that to me , is so powerful, and it just makes you stronger every day, you just see the world differently when you become a parent.

Being a mom is like having seven balls in the air while holding your baby, and trying to catch them all , whether it be trying to juggle having a personal life of some sort, friendships, marriage, a career, and the moment you pay attention to one of these, you immediately feel some sort of “mom guilt” over not being with your child, or not spending all your time tending to them, or just simply worrying about them.

I strongly believe that having children humbles you, although I have never seen myself as a selfish person , I did put myself first in many scenarios, and since my baby girl was born , putting her first comes so natural, I don’t need to think it over, or decide whether I really need to go play with her or go to the hair appointment my hair desperately needs, it’s a no brainer.

Don’t get me wrong, I do believe that “you cant pour from an empty cup” and you are no good to your baby if you are stressed out and unhappy, our basic needs still need to be met and we deserve to be happy in all aspects of life in order to be a good example to your children as they grow up.

It is exactly like the safety demonstration before a flight; “place your own oxygen mask before tending to others”.

It is just that some of the things that used to give me sleepless nights before I became a mom, seems like minor issues to me now, and I feel more capable of handling outside stressors in my life, I feel mentally and emotionally stronger even.

Mom flu is not just actually being sick , it’s a constant state we find ourselves in where we put our families and relationships above our own wellbeing sometimes, and I don’t know about you , but I wouldn’t have it any other way !n The rewards of being a mom , far outweighs the sacrifices and I cannot imagine my life without my precious sweet baby girl.

To all the moms out there who are juggling life and motherhood and feel like you are dropping balls left and right, hang in there, you are not alone, and you are doing an AMAZING job!

Life happens FOR YOU and not TO YOU , and once you realize that, a whole lot of things come into perspective, you stop seeing everything as a chore, and realize what a blessing it is to be able to have children, and friends and a marriage or relationship, and although being a mom is such hard work, you stop looking for validation in other people and start finding it in the little face smiling up at you and within yourself.

And who is a better critic of whether you are doing a good job other than your baby? No one!

 

Angelique

 

 

The things that keep mothers up at night

Its 2 am and I can’t sleep because listening to the monitor; I am not sure if my baby has now turned on her stomach and can’t turn back!

This is but only one example of what keeps me up at night, there are so many nights where my baby is sleeping soundly but, yet I am wide awake with no sleep-in sight. It is like a whole new world at night, one filled with paranoia and anxiousness, it’s like an alternate universe in the early hours of the morning.

If you find yourself here, nothing will make sense, everything that seemed okay during the day, now takes new shape and threatens to destroy the next few days. I personally stress about the most mundane things at night, the moment the lights go out (no matter how tired I am) it starts; do I have enough bottles for the next day, did I take her food out to defrost for the next day, does my husband have clean clothes for work, do I have clean clothes, maybe my baby is too hot, too cold, maybe she is still hungry because she never finished her bottle, maybe I should start feeding her more now that she is older, is her awake time enough, maybe I should adjust that, should she be sitting by now, when will she start crawling, should I help her roll over more often- this list goes on and on, and it also goes on and on in my head.

I have always been a classic over thinker of note, however, now that I am a mother it is ten times worse than before, and there is just so much that I can now spend my time overthinking on.

Unfortunately, this is not a habit that is easily broken, telling a mother to relax and stress less over their child Is like telling a bunny to stop hopping (it is the only comparison I could think of, don’t judge), it is like a new part of me that I never knew existed, all reason leaves the building and I find myself in a constant state of worry.

The Fix

Although there is no “off switch” to being worried about your child, there are certain coping mechanisms to ensure that you don’t drive yourself insane with unnecessary stressing and anxiousness; the first for me was to make an effort to ensure that I have time for myself each day, dad takes our baby girl and I have a cup of tea and just concentrate on my breathing.

My best friend is a medical student, and she educated me on what stress can actually do to your body, most of us don’t even realize that stress can have serious physical consequences if we do not get a handle on it; when you stress too much, your body basically goes into a constant state of “survival mode” – which elevates your heart rate, and that causes that feeling inside of you that makes you feel rushed and anxious (like you have to be somewhere and do something, you can’t just sit still).

In order for your body to calm down, you need to take a break, stress can have serious health consequences, such as; your intestines don’t work like they should, have you ever felt bloated when you are stressed out? – that is exactly what stress does to your body (one of the things at least), and if you want to live long and see your grandchildren, now is the time to stop, take a breath and have some much deserved “me time”.

I know this is not easy if you are like me, I am a busy body, and somehow feel guilty if I just sit around and do nothing, but, like any habit in life, it takes time to break it, and time to form new healthy habits.

Practice makes perfect!

So go and get busy doing nothing, you deserve a break!

Angelique