A couple weeks back, I went to a lovely breakfast with the iStore. It was a wonderful morning of getting spoiled, complete with delicious food, and a gorgeous locale. It was for Mother’s Day, and the PR team went out of their way to make us feel special. Everything about the event was fantastic – from the rose gold cutlery to the incredible goody bag. That’s right, we got amazing presents, too. It was such a treat. One of the presents was a Fitbit AltaHR, which I had wanted for a long time and instantly fell in love with. Now that it’s not just love at first sight, I thought I’d share a little bit more about why I like it so much.
Remember a while back when I asked you all how much you spent on groceries? A wide range of answers came in, mostly depending on how big families were, where you were based, and if you were really good about budgeting and meal planning. I tried to be more aware of our spending, but it actually just brought me down. Sure, I could just bulk up on cheaper starches, but that didn’t seem nutritious nor particularly appetizing. In fact, that wasn’t even that much more affordable. I mean, yes, rice, pasta, and pap are all a lot cheaper than steak and roasted veggies for dinner, but they’ve also gone up in price in recent years. Food prices as a whole seem to have gotten out of control, and it’s not just that I don’t know how to shop or something.
I saw this article in my twitter feed over the weekend, and I just had to read through it. I’m not going to go into the whole thing about regulation and retail pricing, mainly because I’m not 100% convinced that it’s all the evil corporations’ fault. However, this quote about the actual cost of living in South Africa jumped out at me:
Harley has started walking. It actually happened a while ago. When we were in Cape Town, she’d take a couple baby steps (toddler steps?) on her own before coasting or screaming for us to give her a hand. Now, she pretty much can walk on her own although she still prefers a hand, and she doesn’t seem to like thresholds, preferring to be carried over them like a cliched bride. Walking with her is adorable, and I try to do it as often as possible – we walk to and from the car when I drop her off at school or pick her up. I figure the more she walks (even holding my hand) the stronger those muscles will get and the more confident she will be on her own two feet.
While it is incredibly cute and an important milestone, she walks really, really slowly. It can take an extra few minutes just to get to the car, or to walk to the school building. While I sometimes feel like carrying her to speed up the process (and sometimes I need to when we’re running late), I try to resist the urge as much as possible. She is so excited to be able to walk, and I’m so happy for her. Plus, it’s really important that she gets all the opportunities to practice her walking, running and whatever else. But it’s slow and means that I have to have a lot of patience. And those baby steps and their required patience remind me a lot of other aspects of my life that require patience.
I like to think that I’m a fairly confident person. I know my strengths, I know what I want, I know who I am, and if people like me great, but if they don’t, I’m not horribly fazed. I like to think that, anyway. The reality is a bit more nuanced. You see, I love positive reinforcement. I love compliments (doesn’t everyone) and being noticed and praised. I’m like a damn puppy in that sense. I want to be told “good job” and patted on the head or something, but without it being condescending. And I need to get over this need for praise.
It’s not that I even mind trolling or hate. I work in an industry where trolls and haters are so common, I almost feed on them in a sense. If someone is trying to bring you down, it must mean you’re doing something to get them jealous, you’re doing something that makes them think you’re above them. So it’s not about haters or negativity. No, it’s that I have to know that I did a good job at something, especially if I care.
I had a seriously eye-opening Mother’s Day. It was intense and emotional, but also pretty transformational – what I did first thing in the morning on a day all about celebrating moms is definitely going to become a Mother’s Day tradition for me. But first, let me back up and tell you how it all came to be.
You see, I was approached for the Cape Town Embrace campaign, and I wrote about it a few weeks back. I wrote all about how even with all the love, support and help that I had as a new mom, it was still so daunting, so scary. And I encouraged all of you to take part in this idea of visiting moms on Mother’s Day. We’d reach out and encourage them, make their day a little brighter and generally just welcome them to the mom tribe. But there was one problem. I had no idea which hospital I’d be going to or what it would be like. So I felt like a total hypocrite, telling everyone to do this and not even sure how I would manage to do it. Well, the amazing Sharon from The Blessed Barrenness stepped up and organized for us to visit Charlotte Maxeke hospital on Sunday morning, and I was blown away.