I want to be that mother who can stand up and say I am a strong confident mother and I know what is best for my children. We breastfeed and co sleep, We listen, We include, We eat chocolate and snot smoothies, we trampoline and grow frogs, we sling, we carry and we try and understand and work with our children without resorting to punishments, threats or coercion.

Monday, 5 August 2013

I am a robot.....exterminate

I deactivated. I did it....and, I'm still alive!

I have a very addictive personality. If I start something I have to finish it. I am persistent and methodical. I rarely give up. Even if I am not quite enjoying it anymore, I still feel compelled to see things through and get to the end. 

Facebook has no end. It almost had no beginning for me. My husband spend a good few months back in 2006 persuading me to join. I was reluctant. I didn't have any friends, what was the point? I didn't get it. 

Then I joined. 

I was instantly hooked. In the early days most of my FBfriends were family. I have a large family so the numbers were nearing 100's!! It was fantastic knowing what they were up to. I had been quite close to my cousins growing up. Even though they lived in London and I in Glasgow, I still visited them quite a lot over the years and now that I wasn't travelling much due to babies, I loved being 'almost' close to them. I missed them. And there's the rub. 

Taking a break was healthy. It was good not to be looking at my phone every 3seconds or frantically looking *for* my phone!!! I also managed to get quite a lot done, for instance, today I killed over 30 fruit flies with my bare hands.

I'm sorry to say I didn't have any massive revelations but I did watch a lot of films with the girls and of course it was great for them to see my eyes. But....

miss my FB friends!

Over the years, I have developed many many friendships on Facebook, some real life ones too. My newsfeed is bursting with like minded people. Mothers who breastfeed and do so for years not just months. Mothers who co-sleep and are not vilified. Mothers who sling and are not 'spoiling' their baby. Mothers who lament their exhaustion but understand. Mothers who swear! Mothers who get it. Mothers who just know. 

Back in the beginning when I was less unsure and needed a friendly neighbour or two, I started an online parenting group based on the writings of an influential life book called The Continuum Concept. It has hundreds of parents from all over the world all trying to navigate their way through this non coercive, non punitive, non manipulative quagmire called parenting. 

In a society that treats children as second class citizens who need to be manipulated and coerced into being, it is SO comforting to read the thoughts and activities of natural gentle mamas (even the dark thoughts). I rarely have a cry it out status. I rarely read about how manipulative their little shit is being. I NEVER read how a good spanking sorted them out. 

I read many things that give me hope through my lonely parenting journey. I read gentle reminders about respect for small minds and slow paces. I see comforting pictures of messy houses and kids in various states of cleanliness. I see lovely breastfeeding pictures and hear how a mum has decided to be brave, in a country that condemns such behaviour, and feed her baby outside. I have learnt so much more about natural birthing and pregnancy and the essence of womanliness. Embracing these times of growing and nurturing a life and how birthing can be SO much more than mainstream media would have us believe. I've expanded my consciousness  and knowledge base. 

So, whilst my foray into deactiveness was a great experiment and stopped my incessant Facebook checking and 'like' whoreing, I really do see the positives to the now ubiquitous social networking site. It has connected me to many wonderful people I would never have known existed and in those wee small hours when I have been woken for the umpteenth time or when I sit and comfort feed on the kitchen floor mid dishwashing, it really is lovely to have someone awake to talk to and be available right then to say "OMFG will this baby EVER stop sucking!" Or "hey you how's life for you at this ungodly hour?"

So if needing a tribe and wanting to have someone to talk to at any given moment is considered an addiction, then YES I admit....I am a Facebook addict!!

So hold on to your boobies........once camp is over....

I'm signing back in! I miss all of you lovely virtual and real people!!

Focus more on your own behavior than on theirs. It'll pay off bigger.

—Pam Sorooshian

Meltdowns - little Millster is taking the lead!!
Losing the plot - well the little buggers haven't been interrupting my fb time so... ;)
Breastfeeding - thems some nasty big teeth coming through :(

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