A house Spick and Span, What’s that?

My theme is seven and the series is seven situations unique to a mother of two

The fifth situation is that your house is never beautiful


So you are proud of your housekeeping skills? Are your homes good enough to be on the cover page of Good Homes? Chances are you don’t have two children under eight! If you have two children at home, forget about having a spick and span house. I know there are people who have two children and still manage to have a beautiful house, personally, I just believe they are superhumans and one in a million. For mere mortals like me, it’s a herculean and never ending task.

Nothing in it’s place

When the children are at home, there is hardly anything that is in its place. Toys will be found everywhere except the toy storage. Playing or not, they have to be on the floor! The moment you pick them up, one of them will come looking for it. If not toys, then even the kitchen utensils will do! In the morning rush hour when the tiffins need to go on time, my younger one has the urge to get the whole kitchen down!

house will be unclean and messy

PC- Pixabay

Twin’s or Children with less age gap

If you don’t want to be in the eye of a raging storm, never tell a mom of twins or with less age gap that her house isn’t that clean. The poor woman can only manage so much. I have friends who just wish to get done with the day and hit the bed as all they ever do in the initial years is feed, put to bed, soothe a crying baby or clean. The kids just keep going in cycles and without help, it’s a daunting task. Hell, with just one kid at a time, I am so disheveled, my house help looks better than me!

Age gap of four or more

If the age gap is more, it’s still not a better story. By the time you have taught your older child to put things in place, the younger one is old enough to throw them around, so basically your house is a perpetual mess till both of them are at least seven years old and that my friend is a long time. Currently, building house with pillows has caught my younger one’s fancy, so all the pillows in the house are in the living room at any given point in time. Why the living room you ask? Because cushions from the sofa are fundamental in making a good cushion/pillow house. My pleas, begging, shouting, even an occasional whack as resulted in zero improvements and now I have made peace with a pillow land that I call my living room.

 

I am linking this post to #BarAThon 2017 hosted by BlogARhythm

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It is always Mom v/s Kids

My theme is seven and the series is seven situations unique to a mother of two

The fourth situation is whatever the situation it’s always Mom v/s Kids!


Imagine your children are fighting tooth and nail as if the whole world’s survival depends on it, you walk in and try to resolve the issue, thereby ensuring the house does not collapse around your ears. End of story right? NO! The moment you jump in to try and resolve the matter so that your children don’t bite off each other’s heads, it somehow turns on you. They find some unexplainable way, wherein you are at fault and suddenly both of them are on the same team! The weird thing is when they say it; even you believe that it was indeed your fault!

it's always mom versus the kids

photo credit Pixabay

Never get into their fights

That’s the biggest lesson I have learned from my experience. The moment my children start fighting, I just call for a timeout – bark instructions to keep both of them at two ends of the house and at times even throw in a punishment or two, but never ever ask them the cause. Asking for cause is inviting trouble. You will have to listen to both the sides with both of them shouting at the same time, you will not make head or tail of the problem because usually there is none and finally you will be labeled a difficult mother who never understands. The worst is if you pass a judgment where you blame one child for something, suddenly the other child will come to his defense, console him/her saying “don’t worry I understand, Mom doesn’t get it” and the likes. And you start to wonder why in the first place did you get into this mess?

Mom-bashing doesn’t need a reason

Say you are trying to get your younger one to eat some veggies and by virtue of trying to bolster the older one’s image and make her feel good you give her example. “See how your sister eats everything on her plate, She is a strong girl because she eats everything without complaining” You would expect a beaming smile from the older one, but nine out of ten times, she will quip “That is because you made me eat everything when I was young, just like you are making him eat!” And so the mom-bashing starts with both exchanging notes of how mom made them eat all kinds of things without considering their choices. Or how she makes the same old things and never tries anything new.
The darn television ads don’t make your life easy, especially those savory and chocolate ads. The moment those ads run, children will note the virtues of that product and repeat it to you asking why you don’t let them eat such ‘good things’ daily.

Did you ever experience such things? How did you manage without being sucked into it?

I am writing this post for Blogarhythm’s BarAThon 2017

You acquire new skills like being a detective and selective listening

My theme is seven and the series is seven situations unique to a mother of two

The third situation is where you acquire new skills like being a detective!


Yup! If you are a mom of two, you are a part detective. Once the kids grow old enough and learn the art of offering selective information you turn detective. It’s not like they wish to malign the other or have any darker motive; it’s simply the way how they see the situation or problem. The age I am talking about is 6+ years so it isn’t too far away.

mother's are a part detective

Initial Years

Till the younger one can’t figure things out, he is the usual culprit as by then the Child 1 has learned this art and is dying to try it out on someone, so the obvious scapegoat is his/her little sibling. Aren’t they younger? It’s their moral duty to be guinea pigs for all future experiments from older siblings seem to be the thought process. So right from ‘Who spilled the milk?’ to ‘Who latched the door?’ all fingers will point to the younger child and as the younger one is oblivious to this (and too young to argue) things will go smoothly. However, after one or two incidents, the detective in you will arise from his slumber and henceforth every incident will be scrutinized.

Later Years

By now child two will also hone his skills in selective information sharing. In these years, both will come to you with a fight and each will vociferously blame the other for the situation. So if the milk is spilt because the older one came rushing in and pushed the table, Kid 1 will see it as Kid 2’s fault as he didn’t drink it quick enough and is always lazing around and Kid 2 will see it as Kid 1 always runs around the house spoiling/spilling the younger one’s things… so on and so forth, you get the drift.

This is the time when a Mom earns the skills of selective listening. I blame both for their individual shortcomings and get them to clean up together. This helps not being sucked into another debate of ‘you always side with the other’ however be ready for a lot of whining where both discuss and declare that ‘Mom always finds ways to make us work!’ or any other colorful ideas that the children might be nursing on that particular day.

Linking this post to #BarAThon hosted by BlogARhythm 

 

Each child feels ignored

My theme is seven and the series is seven situations unique to a mother of two
The second situation is both the children feel they are ignored or not loved enough


Fighting the accusation You don't love me enough

 

If you are a mom of two, you have had this conversation quite a few times. Whatever the age gap both the children believe that they are ignored and how much ever you try convincing them otherwise, it will have no effect. You will just keep going round in circles with no results.

You Don’t Love Me Enough

This is the first allegation that you will counter once the new baby arrives. The first kid will feel left out, especially with the new baby’s feed – sleep cycle the older child will feel ‘mumma’ spends the most time with the baby and dad goes to work, so nobody cares for them. My kid had high expectations when the second one arrived. She assumed that we will take the baby to play area from day one and she could ‘play’ (read running and hide-n-seek with the baby) So, you can imagine her disappointment when she realized that all the baby did was eat – sleep- cry- repeat. Not even the cute smiles that television ads show-off! She even suggested that as the baby wasn’t doing much and was kinda boring we should think of returning him! As if babies come with a 30-day return policy!

Initially, I felt maybe I was doing something wrong and was to be blamed for this feeling in my older kid, but then I heard experiences from other mom’s and realized this is a natural phase that the child goes through. They require time to accept the presence of this new human being.

All good things happened when Bhaiyya was a baby!

This is what you will hear from the younger ones. There are more photos and videos of the older one, there are more celebrations, better toys (the younger one usually gets hand-me-down’s especially costly toys) Their ‘nakhras’ aren’t taken that seriously! Reason’s are numerous, but generally, it does happen. It doesn’t mean we love the younger child any less. It’s just that we have learned a few lessons in life.  But explaining that to the child is next to impossible.

Below is a conversation that three children in the age group of 5-7 were having at the school bus-stop. Two are older kids and the other is a younger sibling. “Kid 1 – Since the baby has arrived nobody seems to love me. Kid 2- Don’t worry! Things will be okay in a few days. Kid 3 (who is younger) – Yeah, don’t worry in a few months they won’t love that baby also!!”

It was funny to realize that children too discuss parents just as parents discuss their children! But it also made me realize that children do compare notes and try and use their friend’s advice at home, just like parents. So if my kid comes with this ‘You don’t love me enough story, with large innocent eyes, I know there is something else at play!’
So, if you are planning to have child two, brace yourself for many ‘Dhara Ad’ like moments! Remember the ad, where the child says ‘Sab gussa kar rahe hai, main ghar chod ke jaa raha hu!” You might feel all mushy, but also remember the kids are darn smart and do know how to play the emotional card.

I am linking this post to #BarAThon from Blogarhythm Season 2

Life of a referee

My theme is seven and the series is seven situations unique to a mother of two

The first situation that I am going to talk about today is being a referee


You must have heard that if there is a sister or a brother, you don’t need a friend and I have experienced the same first hand, so I can vouch for it, however, all this is true once the children are old enough to understand intense emotional feelings. Till then, for a mother, it’s a long career of being a referee or an umpire. The moment you become a mother, the second time you have to gear up for this position. It doesn’t matter if the kid 2 is only a baby and goes gaga, goo the whole day; there will be some obscure way by which your kid 1 is annoyed and you are summoned to ensure peace.

If the age difference isn’t much and they are either two girls or two boys, there is a different problem. Child 1 will automatically get territorial and there will be a verbal or non-verbal war about who owns Mumma! (read who gets the most attention) and somehow you end up doing a lot of explaining and cajoling of how the time and attention is being given equally to both. They won’t understand or accept however you will keep trying to avoid the house from falling around your ears.

A mother of two is more of a referee

If the age gap is enough where the older sibling is at an age where he can act responsibly, suddenly all the love and anticipation related to the arrival of child 2 will vanish and you will have to answer some weird questions, like “Who decided that I will get a baby brother?” “I don’t like this baby, please go and get it exchanged!” There won’t be open fights in such a scenario, but minor skirmish that you will know exactly who started but have no evidence to pinpoint! Yeah! Well, you even turn into a part detective, but more about it later. And if you try accusing one child of starting it, that child will sulk and other will blame you for hurting the sentiments!

So, you end up having a long career of being an umpire where your decisions are seen with suspicion, nobody is ever happy with you and somehow both believe that you favor the other as if this wasn’t a family but an India-Pakistan match!

Do you have two children? What have been your experiences?

I am writing this series and linking it up with Blogarhythm’s BARATHON 2nd edition

Are all Dad’s Superheroes?

I came across this interesting prompt on Dr.Amrita and DeepaGandhi’s blog asking ‘Do you think all dads are superheroes?’ and it got me thinking, isn’t it true? All normal and sensible men are superheroes in their own right!

Think back to your dad’s, don’t you hold a special place for them in your hearts? I do! For me, my dad gave me the best childhood that I could have asked for. So was he a superhero? Yes! When as a grown-up I realize the trials that my parents must have faced in my growing up years, they certainly are superheroes to me.

Now coming to the other Dad in my life i.e My kiddo’s father. Is he a superhero? I bet he is! When I was expecting, I was a bit fazed with the changes that were happening within me and around me. I wondered if I would be able to manage the responsibility. Frankly, I was blissfully unaware of the all-nighters, feeding struggles, teething issues and the never ending list of challenges that will be thrown my way. It was the same for my husband. However, I realize now, that as I was fazed about the impending motherhood, he was about the impending fatherhood. But from day one, he assured me that we were in this together and he has supported me all along.

All dad's are superheroes

Being a responsible father is no mean task

A responsible father is born the day, a baby is born. The moment he holds the tiny baby, he realizes that now on everything will revolve around this bundle of joy. Be it his career choices, his hobbies or even his television watching habits, everything changes. A father undergoes many changes, just as a mother, but it is seldom talked about.

It’s always baby first

If he is the sole breadwinner in the family, then his economics always revolve around his children and family. He might hate his job, but he won’t just leave it as that would put his family in distress. I have seen many fathers choosing their career paths based on the welfare of their children. Buying something for self will take a backseat and will happen only once all his children’s needs are fulfilled. They might travel far away from homes and live there for long spells, if it offers a good life to their family, all the while pining for dear ones.
All this and more makes Dad’s special. Are they superheroes? I haven’t seen one, but I am sure if there was a superhero, he would closely resemble these many heroes that we encounter in our daily life.

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I am writing this post for  #Mondaymommymoments or #MMM

 

5 lessons I learnt as a Mom

No two kids are alike and hence nothing that has worked with one kid will work with the second kid. I had always believed that parenting is simple and easy (Big Mistake) and assumed I will be a natural and a perfect model for Johnson’s baby ads! How tough can it be? Kids sleep, drink milk, talk sweet nothings and you just have to make them laugh and play with them when they are babies. As they grow up they will learn everything, right! (Totally Wrong!!!) Well, these were the ideas that I had before my baby came along and then I was in for a rude shock!!

That’s when I realized being a parent, is a life long work in progress. Nothing prepares you for it. You cannot learn it nor can you master it. But you do learn a lot from your children. In the following years, after my child’s birth I learnt a few things. Things that have helped me be a better person and hopefully a better parent.

Parenting can be stressful – This is the first thing I learnt as a became a Mom. It also made my respect for my mom grow manifolds. Being  a parent is a thankless job and yet one of the most cherished posts in the world. I respect the fact that I am responsible for growing and nurturing two humans and doing it well is something that I take seriously. I need to be a role model for my children – someone who is responsible, capable of taking tough decisions and never overtly dependent on others.

Focusing on my ‘Me’ time-  As a mother,I ended up losing my identity and choices. I fussed about my children’s choices and wants, family’s requirement and other priorities. I ended up being at the bottom of this priority list. That’s when I observed, my kids never missed on their TV time or play time. They said it made them happy and that’s when it hit me. I need to enjoy things in life to be completely productive. My children made me realize the importance of ‘me’ time.

Keeping my temper in check –I was always known for having a terrible temper. My mom always asked me to keep it in check. Doing a hundred good is wasted with one bad word, she would say. Sadly, I never took those words seriously. However after kids, when I lost my temper and saw their scared faces, I realized how wrong I was. Over the years I have learnt that losing temper hardly serves anything, but arguing without raising my voice can help make a difference. Not that I have mastered this skill. It is still a work in progress but I have made a promise to myself that I will continue working on it.

5-things-i-learnt

To be at the receiving end of nasty remarks, yet chinning up and staying put – When you are a mom for two kids, you end up being in the middle of many fights. While you try to be fair, there are times when the children see you as a villian. The things that you try and enforce as an important rule for their betterment, is seldom seen like that.In situations like these the children lose their temper and say some nasty things. They might not mean it and say in the heat of the moment, but it hurts nevertheless. It is at times such as these, I learnt that I need to put my emotional side away and focus on what is good for my kids and be steadfast in my decisions. They will thank me later.

Always be ready for unknown contingencies- Being a mom of two has made me an amplifier of contingencies.I over think every situation. I am on high alert at all times and I have a solution for almost everything. I know that just when you think you have it all under control life throws a bouncer and you need to figure it out.

I am still a long way from being a pro at this. Still learning new things every day, working hard to be a good parent everyday, trying to be a better version of me. But I am happy in the knowledge that I have learnt a lot on the way

Linking it up with #MMM Monday Mommy Moments by Deepa Gandhi and Amrita Basu 

Shocking Excuses I came across after the recent molestation case.

After the latest Bangalore molestation incident, I was horrified at reading the many excuses that cropped up. I was beyond angry. Every silly excuse got me worked up, with choicest of explicit’s leaving my mouth. Not proud of it, but it got me thinking. It’s high time we stop ignoring these comments as one of. I am putting down my replies to such silly comments. It is important that we reply back in the language they understand and show them that we do see through the smokescreen that they are trying to create.

Not all Men are like that – This one was rebuked online and rightly so. Of Course! we know not all men are like this, but it certainly doesn’t help. Even one in a hundred who acts bad ends up being responsible for scarring a dozen lives and that’s a lot. Also though not all men are like that, not all men offer help either. Shouldn’t that change?

It’s all because of the media and movies- This is one of the most hilarious ones that I have heard. How come we don’t see a similar number of people being influenced to join the armed forces or follow a celebrated athlete? Blaming anything other than that person’s mentality is like spinning a Shekhchilli story. If you can’t help being influenced, don’t watch – Period!

Girls shouldn’t own cellphone – This is taking evils of technology a little too far. It’s a great idea for some sci-fi movie, but if you believe this as a reality, then not even Google can help you. Frankly, it’s the boys who shouldn’t own a cell phone or at least there should be high scrutiny before allowing them to own one. Incidents like watching porn while on duty or in the Parliament prove that not all men are mature enough to know what to watch where. And to say that they are influenced by it, shows they certainly don’t know the difference between reel and real.

8-excuses-that-need-retaliation

Girls shouldn’t venture out with men who are not relatives – Such statements make me wonder if we have really moved forward from the medieval period. Had Jhansi Rani, Rani Channamma, Razia Sultan etc. waited for such male companions, the history of India would have been different. Who will guarantee that the same male relative will not turn into an offender? We don’t need protection we need respect as a fellow human being.

It was a drunken mistake – This is one of the classics, supposedly influenced by media. Well, if you can’t handle it don’t drink. Period! Why should someone else suffer for your incapability? Grow up!

It’s not like she was raped. She was just touched – Really! So, say a girl just strips you in the middle of the road or slaps you for no reason, there is no reason to be outraged. After all, it wasn’t like she killed you. Please google up something called personal space. Violating it is nothing short of a crime.

It’s okay as long as you don’t get caught – How can that even come up as an excuse is beyond me! This is akin to all the Salman Khan-black buck/hit and run case jokes doing the round. So if your wife cheats on you, it’s okay as long as she is not caught in the act?

It’s okay if you don’t know the girl – This sure stems out of some twisted kind of family and societal love. How can it be even logical? Who gave you the right to invade anyone’s personal space? Known or unknown is not even the criteria! Saying this is like saying, next time someone kicks you to a pulp, you will excuse that person, just because you don’t know him.

It is high time we stop making silly excuses and come up with a comprehensive plan to fight these incidents, report them and ensure there are stricter consequences for it.

What are your thoughts on this? Have you come across any silly excuses? do share in the comments below.

10DayYouChallenge:2Songs

Next in the installment is 2 Songs. For earlier posts in this series check here

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2 Songs

2 Songs

Oh! This is such a tough one. I have a huge winding list of favourites 😛 But two songs that really touched a cord are

  1. Badal pe pau hai, ya choota gaon hai from Chak De India
  2. Baby you are a firework by Katty Perry from Katy Perry – Teenage Dream

Both the songs talk about looking at the brighter side, believing in the best versions of ourselves and sky is the limit if you believe in yourself. Love these as they have the power to pull you out of the darkest corners.

10DayYouChallenge:4books

The next in this series is books. To see earlier posts in this series click here  

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4 books

4 Books

  • The Firm- A gripping law thriller that is just hard to put down. I wrote a guest post about my favorite book on November’s Child, you can read more about it there.
  • To Kill a Mocking Bird – I read it when I was just realizing that there are a lot of invisible divisions in this ‘united world’ It gave me a great perspective.
  • The Alchemist – My go to book when I have self-doubts and feel like I am losing my focus
  • Connecting the Dots – An inspirational book. It’s a collection of true stories about laymen from various walks of life turning into entrepreneurs, mostly based on their determination and will.

What are your favorite books?