I need them. I want them. I have to have them.
They were fantastic in helping me stop smoking. But it’s been two weeks now. Surely I should be over the Smartie addiction by now?
Or just send me more…?
One of the things I said I’d never do when I became a parent, was give my child(ren) a pacifier.
V will be three in four months and he still uses them. I say ‘them’ because he has several and he takes great pleasure in choosing which one he wants to use.
I’m not worried about him growing out of it (He will grow out of it, won’t he?) – I just find it irritating that the damn thing is always in his mouth.
It started out as a soother. It became a necessity for nap/bed time. Now whenever he’s cranky or sulky, he wants his chupa (pacifier). He’s cranky and/or sulky A LOT. He wants his chupa ALL the time. I’ve managed to restrict some of his times. For example, he’s not allowed to take one to nursery any more. He can use one in the car, but he’s not allowed to take it with him when we leave the car (wherever we’re going), etc.
I’ve asked people for their advice, I’ve read others’ posts about their kids and giving up their pacifiers and tried to take it all into consideration. In fact, it was after reading this post by motherventing that I decided to broach the subject with him.
Me: Vinay, you know by Christmas time you’ll be a very big boy…
I chose Christmas as it gives him a long time to prepare himself. Don’t think it matters though, he still says ‘yesterday’ for three weeks ago.
Me: At Christmas time, you should give all your chupas away to the little babies that don’t have any chupas. And then Santa will bring you a very big present.
V: Yes, I want Santa to bring me a big big present.
Me: And he will. But first you have to give your chupas to the small babies.
Silence for thirty seconds.
V: No. I don’t want any presents from Santa.
Great. Now what?
Should I keep talking about it? Or should I just leave it?
I have a love-hate relationship with cigarettes.
I started smoking when I was 15 and in 2009 I had hypnotherapy to stop. You can read about that here, if you want.
I did amazingly well (even if I do say so myself). I was a non-smoker for two years, one month and four days before I let myself down and started again. If you want to know how *that* happened, you can read about it here…
So for the last twenty months I’ve been a smoker again. I gradually became less obsessive about whether or not I smelled of smoke. I stopped brushing my teeth and washing my hands after each cigarette. I still tried to not let Vinay see me, but sometimes he did.
And I was disappointed in myself.
At the beginning of this year I decided that enough was enough and that I had to stop again.
Making the decision to stop wasn’t difficult. But the *actual* stopping…?
If I were an alcoholic, I could go to an AA meeting. Or I could go to a doctor or clinic. I could check myself into rehab and get all the help I need. But who could help me to stop smoking?
At the end of February an ex-colleague (and very good friend) told me about a friend of hers who is a hypnotherapist. And the best part is that he lives in Lagos!
I made contact with Trevor immediately. He said the program he does is called Sure2Quit and that I’d need three sessions over three weeks.
I wanted to start right away, but he was travelling and then I was going away for Easter, so I just had to wait!
I was nervous about my first session. I couldn’t understand why it couldn’t be like the hypnotherapy I’d been to before (one two-hour session). Why did I have to go for three sessions?
Anyway, the first session was all talking. Trevor wanted to make sure that I wanted to be a non-smoker. That it was coming from *me* and that I had a goal. We talked about my smoking history and my triggers. Then he gave me some times during the day where I was not allowed to smoke (9.30-10.30 am, 11.30 am – 1.30 pm and 4.30 – 6.30 pm). I didn’t find it that difficult to not smoke during those times.
My second session was a quick re-cap of the previous week. More discussions about my goal and a bit of hypnosis. He also increased my non-smoking times. (No smoking before 8.30 am, 9.30-10.30 am, 11.30 am to 1.30 pm and 4.30 – 7.30 pm). Again, it wasn’t too difficult to not smoke during those times. I also found myself trying not to smoke during other hours. I was still smoking, but definitely a lot less! On the downside, I worked my way through an ENTIRE bag of Smarties.
My third session was last Saturday. I wasn’t sure what was going to happen. Or how anything I’d done in the previous two weeks was going to help me be a non-smoker.
My last session was basically all hypnosis.
And I walked out of there a non-smoker!
I realise now that the first two sessions were preparation. They really helped me understand my dependency and my triggers. They helped me to keep my goal in my mind at all times.
I think about smoking. I can imagine myself doing it. But it’s usually just a fleeting thought.
Vinay is sick. Again. He is on antibiotics. Again. This is the third time in three months!
His temperature has been up and down from 101 to 104 for the last two days, but he is *touches wood* doing much better today.
Anyway, when he’s unwell, he wakes more often during the night and wants to go to mama’s and papa’s room. He snuggles under the duvet with us and asks me to get the iPad out.
V: Mama, I want to see pictures of puppies.
(Cue lots of oohing and aahing and awwing)
V: Mama, I want to see pictures of kittens.
(Cue lots of oohing and aahing and awwing)
V: Mama, let’s see pictures of turtles.
(Cue lots of oohing and aahing and awwing)
This goes on with calves, horses, parrots, sheep, dolphins…
You get the picture.
V: Mama, I want to see fish.
I find pictures of tropical fish. Why tropical fish? They’re just pretty to look at.
He looks at two pictures.
V: No mama – I want to see dead fish.
Me: Dead fish?! Why do you want to see dead fish??
V: Because I want! I want to see dead fish!
Me: Should we look at pictures of buses?
V: Yes! Show me double-decker buses!
*sigh of relief*
Dead fish? Dead? WTF?
Now that Vinay is in nursery I suddenly find myself with spare time in the mornings. (I have things to do – but usually I end up playing Candy Crush and reading trashy novels.)
As much as I enjoy having time to do these things, I do miss Vinay. And I wonder about what he’s doing. Is he participating in activities? Is he drawing? Painting? Singing?
I love picking him up at the end of his day and seeing his face light up when he sees me waiting for him.
I like hearing about the things he’s done that day. Usually he just shares one thing. ”I played outside.” Or, “I painted a cat.” And then it’s up to me to ask questions so I get more information. Nothing wrong with that – and understandable at his age.
Since he’s gone back this week though, things are different…
Me: What did you do in school today?
Me: Did you draw?
Me: What did you draw?
Me: Oh… Did you sing a song?
Me: Oh that’s nice! Which song did you sing?
Me: Did you eat your snack?
Me: What did you eat?
Aren’t these meant to be answers to questions when he’s in his teens?
The older Vinay becomes and the more independent he gets, the more he tries my patience.
I understand that he’s trying to see how far he can push me by testing his boundaries. Or is it my boundaries? And I know that his behaviour is quite normal for a two and a half year old.
What I don’t understand is why he deliberately does things that he KNOWS he shouldn’t. Like throwing things, standing on books, kicking the dog, not eating lunch and/or dinner… The list goes on and on.
But what I really want to know is…
How is it possible that I, his mother, had more patience with a class of twenty five and six year olds than with one two year old?
I’m not the most creative of people. I’m really not.
I hated doing Art at school. And I wasn’t too fond of teaching it either.
Finding fun and suitable activities was easy. Colleagues always had great ideas – but I never did. *sad face*
The fact that I don’t have a creative bone in my body had been weighing on my mind for some weeks – because I’ve always wanted to do art and craft activities with V. And while, like I said, getting the ideas is easy, sometimes finding the materials isn’t!
Just before Easter I was ordering some stuff on Amazon and came across Alex Little Hands pre-school craft kits. They looked interesting (and easy!) so I thought I’d order a couple.
Today we opened the first one…
Inside, each pop stick art animal that you could make was packaged individually. No faffing about looking for this bit and that piece. And a glue stick was even included!
The instructions were super easy to follow!
And the animals were fun to make!
Vinay really enjoyed it and so did I!
Hooray for Alex Little Hands (for those of us that aren’t arty crafty)!
So, I did it.
Twenty months after going to my last exercise class (or doing any kind of exercise, for that matter) I went to pilates this morning.
I went. I enjoyed it. I’m still alive. And I’m going again.
No – it’s not spam and I haven’t been hacked.
This post is actually called Pussy.
Two days ago Vinay and I were doing his Farm Animals sticker book.
On the page we were doing he had to place the stickers of baby animals next to their mothers.
We were talking about the animals, what the babies were called, the noises they make and how cute they are.
And the conversation took a sudden turn.
V: Mama, see pussy.
Me: See WHAT? Oh yes, see it’s a cat!
V: No mama. It’s pussy.
Me: Yes Vinay, it’s a cat.
V: See baby pussy.
Me: Yes – what a cute kitten!
V: No. His name is Pussy. Pussy, pussy, pussy, pussy.
Me: Yes Vinay, it’s a mama cat and her kitten.
V: Mama, please tell Papa to buy me pussy.
Me: Should we finish the rest of this tomorrow?
V: Yes. Goodbye pussy!
Jesus. I thought that conversation would never end!
On Saturday evening we went to a birthday party. It was a child’s first birthday, and the party started at 6.30 pm.
The timing was really weird, but we had to attend. We arrived at 6.45 pm. No one else arrived until after 7 pm.
V was quite happy playing with the balloons. But me… I was totally out of my comfort zone. LagosDad and I didn’t know anyone apart from the hosts – and they were, of course, busy. The hosts and all their guests belong to a different community and don’t speak English very well.
The ladies were all dressed up. Hair done. FULLY made-up. High heels. Tight, tight dresses. One or two of them backless.
All the ladies sat on one end of the table and the men at the other.
I was a bit bewildered, but I dealt with it.
What horrified me was…
A lady came in with her 3 year old son. She sat down opposite me and her son sat next to her. He was excited about all the balloons everywhere and said something like, ‘WOW!’
His mother said to him, ‘Lower your voice!’ His enthusiasm for the balloons didn’t lessen, and again, she said to him, ‘Lower your voice!’ The third time, she threatened to beat him.
A little while later, she was feeding him and he knocked over his glass of juice by mistake. She smacked his hand so hard, her ring flew off!
She then realised that the spilled drink was dripping off the table onto her handbag (which was on the floor).
She slapped him across the face.
She then looked at me, saw me watching her, and said, ‘He just won’t sit still!’
I replied, ‘He’s three. He’s not meant to sit still.’
I don’t think she understood me very well.
The worst part is that when she slapped him, he didn’t cry.
He didn’t flinch.
How often is this child being slapped at home?!
He was a little terror, I was watching him play with some of the other children. I have to admit, he was very rough. LagosDad even commented on that – and he never says anything.
But surely slapping the child at every opportunity is not going to make him behave any better?
I really wish there was something I could do!