Power that lies hidden within you

It was about 3am in the early hours of Sunday morning.  

I woke up (probably needing to pee) and heard the rain falling in a steady downpour onto the sloping roof outside our bedroom window.

I love the rain.

It reminds me of Irish summer holidays in my Aunt’s caravan where it rained more than the sun shone and we would play endless games of pick up sticks, listening to it drumming on the thin roof above our heads.

I listened to the rain; mingled with the steady breathing of Ryan and Jack on either side of me, and Corey on a mattress on the floor.

My husband and eldest and youngest sons, all sleeping soundly; cocooned by the love and protection of our family bond.

And as I lay there, listening to rain and breath, my thoughts turned to the places in the world where mothers are lying in fear.

The places where men are beheading children and putting their heads on stakes in playgrounds.

The places where families are fleeing, mothers and fathers are terrified, and lives are being ripped apart.

And I realised again how truly blessed I am to have the opportunity to live the life that I do.

A life that has never known true fear.  

A life where I get to keep my babies close to me every single day and night.

A life where I can sleep knowing that my children will never be ripped from me and beheaded in the street.

A life that is safe.

And before I drifted back to sleep I reaffirmed my commitment to help eradicate the world of violence by eradicating it in myself.

To remember that every act of ill intent towards another, whether in thought or action, is in fact, violence.

To remember that every time I commit an act of violence I am giving permission for it to exist in the world.

To continue on my path of peaceful, gentle parenting (no matter how hard, or how much resistance I face from well intentioned friends and family) for the sake of not only my own children, but for all children; everywhere.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pest control, worms and head lice (and that’s just the kids)

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Today wasn’t the “arms wide screaming with joy it’s a beautiful life” that I wrote about yesterday.

Today was a bitch.  

I was tired through lack of sleep and hormonal.

Oh, and I’ve got worms (yes really).  That’s what happens in a house of four kids under the age of 8… no one gets off Scott free (except maybe Ryan).

And I’ve only just gotten rid of my last batch of head lice.

So let’s just say I wasn’t in the best possible parenting place.

Since last week we’ve been allowing the kids to choose their own bedtimes, as part of our freedom journey.

I’ve really enjoyed this as it meant I’m much more relaxed in my own schedule.  

We’ve done things like go swimming at 5pm when I’m usually preparing dinner and we’ve eaten as late as 8pm as there’s no rush to get them into bed early for school.

But the downside is that I haven’t spent much time with Ryan.  I miss him.

My kids follow me everywhere around the house… especially Jack who’s two years old.  

Everyone wants to fall asleep beside me, and everyone wants to be wherever I am.

It’s lovely and annoying all at the same time.

So tonight I decided that it was okay to exert just a teeny tiny little bit of control, and get them into bed early.

They were tired, and we have a busy day tomorrow.  It was fine.

(You can tell this isn’t going to end well)

My four year old daughter refused to go to bed as she was watching Ben & Holly and everyone else kept getting out of bed and following me around because they didn’t want to be left out.

Ryan was peacefully watching another episode of Breaking Bad, warmed by the fire I had lit, in blissful, child free, silence.  (I’m not bitter at all)

In that moment, nothing was going the way I wanted it to go.  

I had it all planned perfectly in my mind.  The kids would be in bed early(ish), I’d be tucked up in front of a warm fire watching Sherlock with hubby, and my worlds would be perfectly aligned.

And when the reality didn’t match the dream, I got pissed off.

I remember having a realisation that if I never had any expectations, I’d never be disappointed.

(I don’t know what caused me to have such a profound realisation, but I’m sure there was gin involved.)

Tonight I had a vision in my mind of how it would go, and I wasn’t prepared to be flexible when it didn’t happen.

Inflexibility causes control, and perceived lack of control causes anger.

And being openly angry at kids, in my opinion, is the singularly most damaging thing we can do to them.

There is something wonderful about having a truly deep connection with my kids that I absolutely love.  

But there are times when I wish they’d all just piss off and leave me alone.

Freedom perhaps, then lies, in my ability to pause between stimulus and response so that I may uphold my highest values, and shape their lives for the better.

Thank you for reading my drivel.  I’d love for you to leave a comment.

Until next time…

Kim xo

P.S.  If you kinda liked this and want to read more, click here and enter your name and email address 

Kim’s Blog : Open Your Heart And Your Home Business

open your heart and home business

“Open your heart.”

That was the message in my daily yoga practice this morning that I do at home through Yogaglo.  

When she was asking me to open my heart she was teaching me to do it physically (widen your collarbones and push your heart forward) as well as mentally (allow more love in if you please).

Okay, so at this point I’m going to admit that I’ve always been a tiny bit nervous around the whole “spiritual” side of abundance, and opening your heart, and letting love flow etc.  It’s not that I don’t believe in it, just that talking that way makes me giggle and feel a bit silly.

However, I AM a big believer in the mind body connection.  

I read an article recently on how botox is actually causing users to be happier than previous times.  Apparently our emotions are stimulated by expression and how we move our body, not the other way around.

This makes sense if you think about how you can be feeling a bit low, and after a brisk walk or some exercise, feel on top of the world.

This morning as I have moved about my morning, checking emails, eating breakfast, planning my day, I have felt calmer, more present and more open than yesterday.

I am conscious of my heart, where it lies in my chest and of opening my shoulders to let my heart come forward.

Apparently (according to my yoga instructor) if you do this practice mindfully throughout every day, abundance will flow into your life.  Your conscious shift in physiology will cause amazing things to happen as you will be more open, trusting and accepting.

With the launch of The Work at Home Mums Network next week, I’m in a nervous, excited and kind of scary place right now.

So I’m going to practice opening my heart every time my doubts kick in.

I’m going to trust that everything will be exactly how is should be.

I’m going to trust that you will sing from the rooftops about what I have created for you, as it was created with love, passion and a genuine desire to help.

If you have liked reading this post, then please rock on over to our Facebook page and hit the like button there.

Thank you.

 

 

Kim’s Blog : The Day I Broke Down In Front Of My Kids

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One of the advantages of being a work at home mum is that when my kids are sick, I can take time off to look after them.

However, sometimes I really wish I had someone to take care of me as well as I take care of the kids.  Sometimes I’m in need of a little TLC too.

Take these last few days for example.  My eldest Corey had been very unlike himself from Friday.  He cried to come home early from a birthday party he’d been looking forward to all week, he cried going to Nana’s for a sleepover on Friday, which is usually one of his favourite things to do.  He didn’t want to go to his tennis class on Saturday morning and had little or no energy on Saturday and Sunday.

On Monday morning he woke with a raging temperature and a barking cough and took to the couch to convalesce.  Then at around 10am he started vomiting.  Oh Lordy Loo!  It was one thing after another.  I spent all day rushing around trying to look after him as well as make dinner and tend to the other kids in the afternoon.  So come last night, I was totally beat and I took to bed at about 8.30pm to try to get a decent night’s rest.  (You know this isn’t going to end well, right?)

Since we came back from Australia I have been very relaxed about the kids sleeping patterns, allowing them to come into our bed in the middle of the night and stay there until morning.

However, this has backfired on me.

The two middle kids (5 and 3) have started taking advantage of this relaxation in bed rules, and have been finding all sorts of excuses for nocturnal visits (I need water/to go to the toilet/my room is too dark/my duvet fell off…).

Now I am what I would lovingly refer to as “hard”.  

By this, I mean, I’m a tough old bird: it takes a lot to wear me down or rattle my cage.  But I didn’t realise that the constant disruption of my sleep, combined with rising at 5am and daily yoga workouts, have been taking their toll.

As a result, I woke yesterday morning looking like elephant woman.

A seemingly harmless pimple on my forehead had turned into a swollen fluid filled mountain about the diameter of a golf ball, and a gland had come up beside my ear which was swollen and painful.  I mean, WTF?  Nothing like this has ever happened to me before.

Another night of constantly disrupted sleep last night (45 minutes sleep in every hour, then up at 5am to iron) meant that this morning the whole side of my face was also swollen and sore.

To top it all off, Kai and Maya decided to get up at 5am with me, then proceeded to fight, bicker and scream at each other due to tiredness as I tried to ignore them and keep ironing.

As I went about my morning chores trying to feed, clothe, tend to the sick and mediate arguments (no doubt they were reacting to me not being my usual chirpy self) it took every ounce of my strength not to either scream in frustration to make myself feel better, or break down in tears.

Alas, when Kai refused point blank to put his clothes on for school, all my fight was gone and I kneeled down on the floor, put my head in my hands and wept.  And once I started, I couldn’t stop.

The kids were a bit shocked and started rubbing my back and asking what was wrong, which only caused me to sob even more.  I kept crying until Ryan appeared with a look of surprise on his face to find me in this very unfamiliar position, and promptly took over the dressing in a very masculine way (i.e. No negotiation allowed and they were dressed and deposited downstairs within 2 minutes).

Once I had cried for a while, my tears naturally dried up and I felt a bit better.  I fetched a cup of coffee and and ice pack for my swollen head and eyes, and lay on the bed for a bit while it all got to work.

30 minutes and some caffeine and ice later, I felt like a new woman.  Allowing myself to release my pent up emotion and feel my tiredness and frustration had been incredibly freeing.  I felt lighter and more human.

I always thought that the worst thing ever would be allowing my kids to see me cry, as I was supposed to be the strong one.  But the tenderness of their response surprised me.  They weren’t scared or freaked out by it; they seemed to understand my need to release through crying.  Corey even told me that after a good cry he feels better, which surprised me that someone so young would be so aware of his emotions.

I also immediately made an appointment to see my chiropractor who helps my body to realign and naturally heal itself.  He told me the bone structure in my head and face was out of alignment which was causing the swelling and he worked on me for about an hour.  As a result the swelling has reduced and I feel 100% better.

The moral of this story?

Don’t be too strong all of the time.

Don’t deny your emotions or judge them to be bad or wrong.  Sometimes an emotional release is exactly what you need and your kids are the best people to comfort you without judgement or trying to make it better.  It’s good for them to see that mommy is a human being too.

Maybe if we allowed our kids to see us more as human beings and less as human doings, it would help them to understand themselves better.

But more importantly, it would teach them that crying is okay.  Pain is okay.  It comes and it goes in the same way happiness does.

Emotions are part of life.  Don’t deny yours.  Embrace them for a richer and more expressive existence.

And remember to be a mom being, not a mom doing.

Please will you do me a favour?  If you enjoyed this post and have ever felt the same as me, please share it amongst your friends by using one of the sharing buttons at the bottom of the post.

Let’s encourage and support other women in their incredibly hard and emotionally challenging journey into motherhood.  Let’s tell them that it’s okay to feel sad, and scared and helpless.  Cause we’re here for one another; without judgement and with lots of love.

Take care of you

Love Kim x

Kim’s Blog : Rich and Complicated or Poor and Simple?

This morning I took baby Jack to a mothers and toddlers coffee morning group that I went to for about four years when my oldest kids were young and I was a SAHM.

I found this group through a friend, that ironically, I met online many years ago, when we were members of the parenting website contented baby.com.  This person and I quickly struck up a rapport and became firm friends, spending a lot of time together with and without kids.

I greatly admire her.

She has just given birth to her fifth baby, and is one of the most gentle, compassionate and caring people I know.  She has an inner strength that I don’t find in very many mothers.  She admits that she doesn’t have all the answers, but yet seems committed to the decisions that she does make.  We also share similar philosophies in parenting and education, in health and in family.

When I was running my first company (that I recently closed) I was making a fabulous income and worked with a big team of people on a daily basis.

But you know what?  I was desperately unhappy.

I was stressed, run down and overwhelmed with the sheer volume of work it took to keep all the balls in the air, both at home and at work.

Making the decision to close it was one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do.  But if truth be told, I’ve never looked back.  My income has dropped sharply, yet I’ve never been happier.

I spend less frivolously than I ever did before, yet I am richer inside than I have ever been.

The reason I started the company was so that I could provide a better life for my kids.  Yet, they were the ones who were suffering the most from me constantly saying “Not now, I don’t have the time”

Now, thankfully, I do have the time.

I’ve also noticed a huge shift in my kids’ behaviour.  They spontaneously hug me a lot more, ask for cuddles all the time, argue less and are more helpful.

I rarely feel like we’re rushing anymore and feel more deeply connected to them than in any time I can remember.

I also have more time to spend with friends like Anna.  Friends who lift me up, inspire me, uphold me and are committed to making this world a better place to live.

I’ll leave you with a quote from Dr Seuss, which pretty much sums it all up for me:

“You have brains in your head.  You have feet in your shoes.  You can steer yourself in any direction you choose.  You’re on your own.  And you know what you know.  And YOU are the one who’ll decide where to go.”

If a situation is making you unhappy, change it.  Sometimes making the decision is actually the hardest part.

Kim’s Blog : 10 Reasons To Feel Joy

thank you

I was standing doing my ironing this morning, listening to the radio and thinking how happy I am.

I don’t want much from life.  I have learned from this man over the years that if I can find joy in the very simple things, my day to day existence is peppered with truly great moments.

I try to remember to be thankful every single day, for all that I am and all that I have.  When I remember to do this, life has so much more meaning, and the hard stuff doesn’t really seem quite as hard.

Over the past week, here are some of the simple things in which I have found joy:

1.  The quiet time at 4.30am when the world is sleeping, and I can do my ironing and think without distraction

2.  Watching my kids wolf down a fresh, hot batch of pancakes at our kitchen table in the morning

3.  Sharing a yoga class with my sister, then chatting over coffee afterwards

4.  Spending time with my family when we returned from Australia, and catching up on all their news

5.  My baby boy Jack, finally finding joy in walking and watching him toddling around the house on wobbly legs

6.  Watching my boys make mouse houses out of sheets and blankets, with my best friend’s little boy, who is like a brother to them

7.  Hearing 2 year old Maya say “I love you mummy, you’re my best friend” (my heart melted)

8.  Feeling one of my kids climb under the duvet beside me at 3am, and back into me for a deep snuggle

9.  Watching Ryan play with the kids, seeing their love for him, and thinking how lucky I am to be married to such a man

10.  Writing this blog every day, knowing it is being read by thousands of people the world over, and being thankful for each and every one of you that chooses to spend your time with me.

Kim’s Blog : Why Sisters Are The Best

I went to yoga this morning with my sister, and then for a coffee afterwards.  I had forgotten how much I love spending time with my sisters.

Here are some of the reasons why sisters are the best:

1.  We are the bestest of friends and so easy in each other’s company.

2.  I can tell them things knowing that they will immediately understand what I mean.

3.  I can share my most intimate secrets and problems with them, and not feel in the slightest bit uncomfortable.

4.  We share values in education, child rearing, health and fitness.

5.  Because we are all so close in age, we never remember a time when there wasn’t three of us.

6.  I trust them implicitly with my children, knowing that they are being loved and cared for in the same way they would get at home.

7.  We are all the same dress size and can borrow each other’s clothes and shoes.

8.  They always wash dishes and tidy up when I have a party at my house.

9.  Like me, they get drunk on one glass of wine, so we can have a rip roaring night out on just one bottle of wine between us.

10.  I would be incomplete without them.

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Why I Am Responsible For Sandy Hook

Like everybody else, I have been in shock recently at the tragedy that happened at the Sandy Hook Elementary School.

As a “good” person, I find it inconceivable how someone could commit such an act.  How could someone possibly kill innocent children?

Yet, if I look deep into my soul and am honest about my own propensity for violence…every time I have decided to express anger towards my husband; every time I have used my anger to control my children, I can begin to understand the workings of the violent mind.

Violence is violence, no matter how we dress it up or justify it.  

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Yet we live in a world where we allow our kids to play computer games where the characters kill and maim each other; we breed animals and then slaughter them for our pleasure, because we have been taught to believe that we need meat as part of our diet.

Each of us is imperfect and each of us feels anger towards others… it’s part of being human.  The destruction comes when I decide to indulge that anger to make myself feel better, hurting other people in the process.

Is the destruction that happened at Sandy Hook worse than yelling at my children?  Of course it is.  But to say that I could never ever understand how someone could commit such an act, is to deny a part of myself.

A very wise man once taught me that the only thing I have control over in this life is ME.

Only when I stop choosing violence in MY life, will I actually begin to make a difference.  Every time I choose violence, I am giving it permission to exist in the world.  I cannot possibly blame others for doing what I continue to do myself.

There is NO compromise.  Either you want it to exist or you don’t ,and the only way to eradicate it in society, is to eradicate in yourself.  

So you want to do something about the tragedy?  To make it better somehow?  You can.  Today.  Right now.

Commit to transforming yourself and raising a more peaceful generation of society.  

You’ll be amazed at the difference you can actually make.

 

Ungrateful WAHM Needs Seriously Large Slap

Day  6 of The Constable Aussie Adventure 2012

I didn’t realise just how much I have become used to having time and space away from everyone every day, and how much I depend on it.

Staying with the in laws in their (beautiful and modern) open plan house, means that there really is no place to hide for a moment’s peace.

Even my two year old joins me in the shower every morning, as all the showers are wet rooms without doors and as soon as she sees me in there she has stripped faster than an adulterer on speed, and reversed her tiny torso into the water.

And every time I sit down and open my computer, the little glow of the Apple icon attracts baby Jack like a fly to a florescent light, and he comes rocketing across the floor on all fours, to bash the keys while I’m trying to type.

The boys are used to living in our child friendly old house, where they can use the sofas as trampolines, and the cushions as missiles.  They prefer to sit anywhere except the couches, including window ledges, bookcases and counter tops.

So let’s just say that I don’t think their grandparents are appreciating their designer, Natuzzi, corner sofa being used as a human launch pad, or sweaty bum cheeks, of questionable cleanliness, being plonked on their tables and chairs.

My only respite is my hour of blissful yoga every morning, where I get to breathe deeply and hang out in dog head down without being used as a human bridge or having a little grubby face appearing under my arm saying “Helllloooo mummy, what are you doing down here?”

Seriously though, I know it sounds like I’m complaining, but actually I’m having a great time.  

I get to do yoga at 6am every morning while my MIL looks after the kids, and we’re spending a lot of time eating, drinking and chatting.

My husband, who normally acts like a man living in the 1950’s in terms of his contribution to home and childcare, is being amazingly helpful and considerate.

The problem actually, lies with me… I just am not very comfortable with relaxing and doing nothing.  

What is wrong with me?  All I have dreamed about is the opportunity to do very little for a while, and when it is presented to me, I’m still not happy!

Anyway, enough of my yabbering.  I’ve just realised it’s nearly 3pm and a perfectly acceptable time to have my first drink of the day.

Y’all take care now, and I’ll try to hide in the loo tomorrow to keep you all updated.

 

 

 

 

Work At Home Mum On The Move: Operation Down Under

Okay so this is it:  OPERATION AUSTRALIA is nearly underway.

The hallway is filled with three large suitcases, one giant holdall, two carry on suitcases, one backpack, one shoulder bag, one baby car seat and three booster seats.

My thoroughly anal spreadsheet organisation has meant that I have packed and planned for every single eventuality.

I have even remembered to bring medicine, antibiotics, Wartner cream for Kai’s verucca (or his Veronica as Maya keeps calling it), a pair of baby nail clippers and the bottle of JUNGLE strength mosquito repellent that his been waiting to be unearthed from the kitchen cupboard for the last three years (I’m convinced the mosquitos can smell my blood as I disembark from the plane).

I am armed and equipped to deal with every pang of hunger, thirst, boredom and bodily function. (Hey, I’m not saying I AM Wonder Woman, only that we’ve never actually been seen in the same room together)

Even though we’re only going away for a month, my mum and sisters and I got really emotional when I was saying goodbye to them tonight.  Northern Ireland is so teeny tiny that we grow up practically living in each others pockets.  My sisters and mum are my best friends, and we see each other several times every week.  My absence from their lives for a month, is like surviving without a limb; you’d learn to adapt, but you’d never really feel whole and complete again.

My biggest fear is losing my mum or one of my sisters.  Even the thought of being without them fills me with dread.  I thank God that we are all healthy and happy, and I really do try to make each and every moment count.  Even though I can come across as bossy and righteous, and generally believe that I know best, they know that my heart is in the right place, and all I want is for them to be happy.

So Mum, Carole and Kerry, I promise I’ll be back soon.  Don’t do anything too fun without me please, and always remember how much I love you.

And to all my readers, who only know me in words anyway, you’ll hear more of my drivel on my blog, as I continue to report on my journey though life, motherhood and working from home (which will be Australia for the next month).

Snuggle your little ones tight WAHMies.  Love y’all.

Kim x