Looking back

Good day all!
We did yay!! 31 days of blogging done woop!
I have thoroughly enjoyed it but I am really looking forward to a day off tomorrow… Well sort of day off lol!

When I reflect back on the last month I realise how many tough subjects I gave myself.
At the time it didn’t even occur to me. But if I have helped just one person during this process I will be a happy lady.
I am not going to go all serious today, I am going to reflect back on important points…and throw in some good Friday feelings too! :mrgreen:

My first tough subject was about depression ( read here ) I wanted to discuss this due to the fact that there have been a lot of stories of  people taking their lives whilst suffering from depression, as they feel they have nowhere to turn. I want people to know they are not alone.

Bullying came next ( read here ) as someone who has suffered at the mouths of bullies I think it needs to stop. Nowadays bullying is rife in our schools, on the internet, in homes, from strangers. I am going to become an advocate for anti bullying. People should not be in fear when they leave their homes. Children shouldn’t fear stepping through the school gate. It must be stopped.

One of my favourite posts from this month was about inner beauty ( read here ) this is something that I firmly believe in. Beauty is not just on the outside. It is skin deep, in your soul. When you feel beautiful inside it radiates off you like sunshine.

I discussed several other subjects –
body image
be yourself
fear
self harm
self esteem

What I find interesting about these subjects is that they are surrounded by negative stigma.
Unless you have suffered from one or more of these issues its hard to fully understand them.
When it comes to self harm, it is one of the most secret subjects. People don’t discuss it and don’t care to.
People find it hard to understand why someone would do it.
They think the intention is to end your life
But this is not the case.
In a way it is like a release.

What I intended with this 31 day challenge, was to raise awareness of issues that I feel are worthy and important.
I hope that through this I have helped at least one person, either with their own hardship or to understand what someone close to them is going through.
I hope that I haven’t offended anyone with my posts… Thats why I mixed it up a bit ☺

I hope that I brought out a note of positivity and hope within my writing.
Because trust me things get better.

We are all strong
We are all brave
We are all awesome

I have also discovered a bit more ‘me love’ this month.
I have struggled deeply with this for years.

Just this week a bit of original Charlotte came out…I stood in my kitchen doing dishes and dancing!
Haven’t done that for years..,felt really good!

Let’s be ourselves shall we.
Let’s not be afraid of what anyone thinks.

Dance like nobodies watching
Sing at the top of your lungs
Buy those bright coloured trousers…go on!
Dye your hair..cut your hair..ooh but don’t go crazy :mrgreen:

Do what makes you feel good!

Now for my friday feeling

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I love a good cheerful, inspirational quote.
So what better way to showcase that but in your wall?!
I love all of these, they all speak to my personality.
Some of them are really on the nose with regards the inner workings of my scatterbrain ☺
Which would you choose?

I have also discovered the joys of sharpie mugs! I am so making one of these ☺ with my own quote… Something like
‘ssh there is a chance this is wine’

Alrighty then guys,
I had a blast with this and can’t wait for next year!

Remember –
Be yourself
You are wonderful
Unique
Awesome
Brave
Intelligent
Beautiful
Courageous
You may be different, quirky or a little weird
But you are amazing because you are you.
So let’s stick together as women, survivors, mothers and advocates of kindness.
Love each other
Treat people as you want to be treated.
Be kind and don’t rewind

As the song goes ‘the past is in the past, let it go’

Love you all ☺

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Dear Bella – my big girl

My baby girl.
I remember the day we found out we were having you, like it was yesterday.
Seeing those lines appear filled me such joy and warmth, it made my first California trip even more wonderful.

When we first saw you on the screen at the hospital my heart swelled with happiness.
The first time hearing your heartbeat was a joy and a relief.
You were so longed for, the 9 months dragged on so slowly.
Looking through the tiny baby clothes with misty eyes, and choosing your first outfit was so emotional.

I read everything I could on how to take care of you.
But what they say is right ‘ mother’s instinct kicks in’

The day you decided it was time to meet you was truly bizarre. I got up, cleaned the dishes made daddy a coffee and sat down for breakfast. Then all of a sudden ‘pop’

7 hours and 1 cheeky epidural later you were here.
All 5lb 10oz of cute, pink baby!

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Can’t say I will ever forget that moment when I realised I was a mama now. I got to keep you ☺
Although I don’t think any book can fully prepare you for motherhood.

The first year passed by in a flurry of nappies, naps, crawling and baby food.
You were growing before my eyes and I couldn’t slow you down

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Before I knew it you said your first word ‘tractor’ you could tell you grew up in rural wales!
You are the most social little thing I have ever met.
You will be friends with anyone and everyone.
Goodness knows where you get it ☺

Then came the walking.
The stair climbing.
The climbing out of bed.
And your growing independence
You love to sing – thanks to me
And the great outdoors – thanks to daddy
And food…well doesn’t everyone!

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You were 2 and half when we added Ariana to the line up!
I worried you would feel threatened, but you loved her from the moment you met her.
Not only are you sisters but friends ☺

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You are growing into such a lovely girl
Forever my baby!
You throw tantrums but what kid doesn’t!
You know your own mind, but you forget I am just a bigger version of you…I know every trick you through at me.

Now you are in school
Learning so fast
You already know welsh words
I wish you weren’t growing so fast…makes me feel old :mrgreen:

You are noisy, chatty, clumsy, arty, musical and friendly.

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Slightly crackers, fiery, social, independent and loving.
Don’t ever change my sweet girl

Love mama c

No more mum shaming!

Good day all.

I have known about this ‘thing’ between mums for some time, but I never knew it had a name.
Thanks to the joys of the Google search engine I discovered its called “mom shaming”

Just recently our oldest has been learning to stay dry at nighttime. At 6am she gets up to pee, and then is too scared to go back in her bedroom. So we let her come in our bed for a bit.
I am not one for bed sharing generally and I have no problem with the concept. However in this instance to avoid a crying 4 year old in the wee hours of the morning I happily or should I say sleepily oblige.
However, when you talk to other mum there seems to be the ones that say “oh goodness I would never let my children share a bed with me” bringing up all these facts just to make you feel awful. So you then try and rethink what you do.

I have always been the kind of person not to judge any mum for how they raise their children.

Something that has been in the news just recently is breastfeeding.
We are sold the idea during pregnancy that breast is best.
Now I have no doubt that it is. Its natural and free.
But not all mums can do it.
My mum never breastfed any of us…and she had 5 children
My oldest was born very small and wouldn’t latch on. So she ended up being formula fed.
Ariana was breastfed for 4 weeks and then formula fed.
James was breastfed for 6 weeks then I developed and infection and he has been breastfed ever since.

Now what bothers me is that when mums start breastfeeding their babies in a public place they are made to feel so awful. They are either asked to stop or leave. I was in a coffeeshop recently and was taking my daughter to the bathroom, when I walked in there was a young woman sitting on the floor breastfeeding her baby.
This poor woman was made to feel so bad that she was forced into the bathroom to feed her child.
I feel inadequate for not being able to breastfeed my babies for longer but I would never make anyone feel bad for feeding their child.
What we need to do is support each other. We are all mums no matter how we feed our kids we need to be there for each other.

This is a controversial one you may think.
Working mums Vs stay at home mums.
I am a stay at home mum.
When bella (my oldest) was born I was a working mum, as at the time it was the only option what with a big mortgage and bills to pay.
Will I be shamed for this?
I have been a stay at home mum for a year and a half now.
Hubby changed jobs and is just about earning enough to cover all things ☺

But what I found upsetting about this is that I am considered to be a lazy, jobless, government money claiming mum. Who only has children to claim all she can.
I find this so awful. If you don’t work boy are you shamed.

Apparently, being a mum isn’t a full time, 24 hour job…who knew!

But then you on the other side you have the working mum.
I find these women truly inspiring
They work full days, get home make dinner, feed the family, get them ready for bed and keep their houses clean!
They do so much its unreal.
But they are criticised for working.
For putting their child in daycare
For not raising them so to speak
I have heard the phrase “why did you have kids if you aren’t going to raise them” so many times.
It is very hurtful to judge.
They work because the have to. Its not always such a cut and dry situation.

Basically, its the whole thing with society again. We are given views on how parenting should be.

Breastfeeding vs bottle feeding

Bed sharing vs own bed

Dummies

Homemade baby food vs jarred baby food

Stay at home vs working

Homeschooling vs regular school

I think that we need to stick together as mums.
We all do the same job
We are all mums no matter how we parent.

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Me? I am not one for organic food, but I try and make homemade meals. When my babies are 4 months old I use the crying method to help them settle to sleep (a lot of mums don’t agree with this) I bottle feed and don’t use dummies.
If my kids are poorly or sad, they come in our bed
I stay down stairs with any of the kids that are teething
I make and freeze my own baby food
I am hyper organised with getting the kids ready for the day, but when it comes to me…I am the mum with the unkempt hair and wearing the jeans with knee holes. Yes I do that.
Sometimes I even wear my yoga pants on the school run shock horror!
I hide in the kitchen and quietly sneak a biscuit out the tin…sssh!!
I tell the kids I am busy doing something important on my tablet…but really I am searching pinterest ☺
Sometimes I forget about the washing in the machine and end up rewashing it..oops!
But does this makes me a bad mum?
Nope just an honest one!

What about you?
Have you ever felt shamed for how you raise your kiddies?
What kind of things do you do?

Remember all for one, one for all.
We are all sisters of motherhood
No matter how you paint it
Mums rule on either side of the parenting coin.

Let’s stop the shaming
Be there for each other
Support each other
Don’t spread feelings of inadequacy
Imagine how hard it will be to raise kiddies to be loving and kind individuals. Teaching them that bullying is wrong.
Then having them see the chatty, backhanded comments we make without realising?!

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Dear body image

Body image
Two little words but one huge issue in today’s society
We are sold the idea of body perfection via the soul crushing outlets of media.
Where ever you turn you see tiny size 0 models posing on billboards or even David Beckham in the infamous tightie whities.
This image isn’t a realistic portrait of healthy body image.

When we see these images it stirs something inside us.

Why don’t I look like that?
Why do my thighs touch?

What we don’t realise is that its not a change of image we need. Instead we need to change our attitudes towards our bodies.
Look in the mirror and say I am perfect how I am.

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As a girl a suffered from anorexia.
At my lowest I weighed 4 stone.
But I didn’t have half as many pressures on me as there are today.
At the time there was no such things as pro ana websites.
Which are so scary, I can’t even tell you.

I just had my 3rd baby.
He is now 4 months old.
I am stressing that I haven’t lost my baby weight yet.
I am still wearing elastic waisted trousers.
But why am I stressing?
We are sold the illusion that because celebrities can lose the weights within a matter of weeks… That anyone can
Sure if you have the money, the personal trainer and nanny to watch your baby.
But in reality its not that simple
Its not so cut and dry.
And yet so many young mums are desperate to fit back in their pre pregnancy jeans by any means necessary.

I am under the thought that my kids come first.
I know a lot of women agree with me

But my brain is a funny thing
That voice in head telling me when I look in the mirror that I look fat is lurking its ugly head.
Telling me I need to lose weight…at least 2 stone it says
Look at your thighs touching..how gross
Look at you, you are a disgrace.

You can never fully erase something as powerful as anorexia
There is always a spot for it to live.
Waiting to catch you at a vulnerable moment.
Knowing that you will give in if it uses cruel jibes.

But we mustn’t let it creep its way back in.
It is a fast working disease.
Starting small.
Building bigger and consuming more of you as it goes.
Destroying not only you, but those around you.

What we need to do is not give in to the image of so called body perfection

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Look at the above image
Powerful isn’t it.
Look at all the beautiful women.
Size doesn’t matter.
Every size is beautiful
You are how god made you.
If god loves us, then why can’t we love ourselves?

We need to look in the mirror and say ‘gosh I look great today’
Its hard
Boy do I know its hard
This is something I am writing because its a reminder to me also

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I also want to instill a positive body in my girls.
If they see me stressing and picking over food and counting calories, don’t you think it will rub off on them?
Mummy doing this, so I should too?
I can’t imagine passing this down to my girls.
So I hope to boost my own love for my own body.
So one day I can look in the mirror and actually like the girl looking back at me.
Instead of feeling shame and contempt for her.

Let’s start a body revolution
Let’s love our bodies
See them as perfect as they are
Beautiful

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I am ISFJ, hear me whisper.

I am not a very interactive person
Groups of people are not my thing.
In fact the prospect of meeting someone I don’t know fills me with an intense dread.
Will they like me? Will they hate me? Will the talk to me?
I don’t cope well in crowds, my heart beats a 1000mph
I smile on the outside, but curl up on the inside, in a figurative corner.

My sensitivity levels are high, my feelings are in the open air.
I fear letting people in, I don’t want my wounds re opened.

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I spent way to long being hurt by those I considered friends.
I am vulnerable when it comes to friendships.
I allow myself to be taken in by a momentary kindness.
Which then pushes me to where I become more and more loyal.
I am proud to be a loyal person.
I will be there for anyone if they need it, rain or shine.
Unfortunately this means I have been taken advantage of on more than one occasion. Which has made me build an enormous wall.

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One thing I just can’t cope with is conflict.
Just thinking about it is making my stomach twist and knot uncontrollably
If I have opinions, I don’t share them out of fear of conflict.
I wear my heart on my sleeve, and take things really personally.
For some reason I just don’t cope well with rejection or negative criticism.
Yikes I feel sick thinking about it.
There is something about it that makes me feel like I am not good enough.
Even though I feel this way I am the kind of person that loves her friends implicitly.
I am a naturally all or nothing kind of lady, so I give them all I have.

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I love with a full heart.

1. Sometimes I just want to be alone.
Being around people is not all bad. But sometimes I just need time to myself and recharge my batteries you know?

2. I am shy.
Believe it or not in ‘real’ life I am shy. I can be myself more in writing. In person I am more of an in my shell kinda gal.

3. I am very altruistic.. Maybe even too much.
I don’t accept help, because I don’t want to put on people. I am overly kind to people sometimes, which isn’t a bad thing..but some people can’t cope with it.

4. Man am I organised.
I can’t leave the house with out snacks, spare clothes, nappies, wipes, blankets, and juice. I can’t be late…for anything! I turned up 40 minutes early for a root canal the other day…you know as you do!
On the first day of half term I got the kids homework done!

5. I procrastinate like nobodies business!

6. My sensitivity is sometimes overwhelming

7. When I was in work, I would do everything that was asked of me and more. Even though it was never really appreciated. I try and do anything to the best of my abilities.

I may wear my heart on my sleeve but I put it into everything I do 100%
My voice my be quite, but I have a voice.
My heart may be scarred but it is full of love
I try to spread kindness to those who need it.
In a world where kindness is rare.

What about you? What’s your personality type?

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Just be you

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“A flower does not try to compete with the flower next to it, it just blooms.”
This quote is poignant and very true.
We should echo what the flowers do
Be individual
Don’t compete with those around us
Be beautiful

But how is it possible when you have spent so long trying to blend in and be like everyone else.

Here is something that has got me..
Being who you are is never good enough
Changing yourself to fit in isn’t good enough
So you change yourself again to try and fit in better…still isn’t enough.
So just go back to being who you are

People may not get you
People may say you are weird or geeky or uncool.
What ever you do will never be good enough.

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The world sells us the idea that being a cookie cutter, size 0 polished version of a celebrity is the perfect way to be.
Get the fashionable clothes and your hair coiffed just right, get the in style shoes and never ever leave the house without makeup on!! Oh the horror!
But tell me does this make you you?!

The ironic thing is we are sold this idea of perfection via magazine and advertisements etc – but what I find interesting is that look closely at the picture – its too perfect right?!
So much work and effort goes into projecting a certain image (that and Photoshop)
I don’t have enough time to be that put together…jeans on, jumper on, brush teeth, wash face, tie up hair…done!
But that is me.

I am slightly odd
I am quirky
I am not fashionable
I don’t fit in
But I don’t blend in
I am kind of in between
I dance around the kitchen when I am cooking
I sing along to everything
I say stupid things before I think
I wear bright, bold colours
I have bright, bold hair

But I am proud to say I am the best me I can be.

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So lovely people are you proud to be you?
Are you happy to not fit the mold?

Be bold
Be understanding
Be brave
Be happy
Be silly
Be wacky
Be proud
Be colourful
Be loving
Be sweet

Just be you.
You are perfect, wonderful and beautiful.

Remember if you love who you are and be who you are, be honest with who you are…then you will be happier for it.
Be the best version of yourself that you can be, and if all else fails…

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Have a great sunday ☺

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Charl’s roundup

Good day all!
As we come to the end of the write31days challenge, I thought I would reflect on the subjects that I have written about…and maybe sneak some other things in!

When I wrote the title for today I had this image of Britney humming Woody’s roundup to herself ( if you weren’t before you are now lol!)

So, when I started this challenge I thought 31 days in one subject can’t be difficult to do surely…boy was I ever wrong!

I sort of mixed tough subjects with a bit of upbeat things.

I have talked depression, self esteem, bullying, self harm and beauty within.
All these subjects are vastly important and many not discussed.
I remember I wrote I piece on depression being an illness the day before Robin Williams sadly lost the battle with his darkness. (read it here)
My hope in sharing them was that in some way maybe I could help someone else, sometimes words can be powerful.
We tend to forget how much a few words can calm someone’s soul.

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I have come to the realisation that I am not defined by my struggles. There is more to me than people think.

Imagine an iceberg, you only see a small part above water but look below the surface and you discover there is more to it than meets the eye ☺
I never considered myself brave before, but I guess sharing parts of my story makes me somewhat so.
I am not one for bigging myself up so to speak.
I get embarrassed in the face of any form of praise.
I guess you could call humility, I call it eek!! Cheeks the colour of my hair lol!
And do you know what I am proud of who I am.
During September I found so many wonderful people that I have things in common with and I am so grateful for them. I found them at a time in my life when I need them.
Check them out – Helen Britney Lizelle Bess
I am ever so thankful for their kindness, and the joy they bring people through their words.

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I like this quote, its lovely honest wording warms my heart.

Speaking of hair, I booked that hair appointment… And faced my first mini fear..10th november ☺
I have picked 4 styles…tell me what you think! Oh don’t worry I am not changing the colour ☺

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I am torn between the top 2 to be honest ☺

I think I am trying to achieve one thing through my words, and that is to help anyone to realise they are all beautiful. Unique is a word I like to use.
I think people are so often pulled down by the hurtful words of others that they start to believe the fiction that people weave.
Like I said before words are powerful.
Just a few can etch into your heart, and can never be erased.

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But if we aim to love who we are despite our flaws, then it will radiate from us like sunbeams.
People will see our happiness and feed off it.
Happiness is infectious
A smile goes a long way.

Smile today.
Watch how it lights your way ☺

Have a great weekend

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