Natural labour or a C-section? Drugs or no drugs? Here I’m in the thick of the third trimester, 38 weeks and what feels like now the longest 2 weeks of all time to go. It’s my last pregnancy, the last time my body will grow a life, share a heartbeat with another in the same body.
Now at this stage of pregnancy, so many questions are being asked and opinions are flying in fast… So are you going to have natural labour or a C-section? Drugs or no drugs? Breast or bottle? Are you still going to be feeding that toddler of yours AND a baby? Oh wow, you are huge, sure there’s only one haha? (Yeh original mate ha) Your not very big are you? Don’t worry you will shed that baby weight in no time!
And my personal favourite, Is this your last, I mean seriously you can’t be going for any more surely?!
And as for that last question that since I’ve chosen to share snippets of my life on here… It is most definitely the LAST time, my body has had enough the Hyperemesis gravidarum (HG) has completely taken its toll on my body, my mind and changed my way of life completely over the past 9mths. And so it is official Mr. Oatesy has sorted that out #snippysnip phewwww I feel an overwhelming sense of relief!
So here’s the thing, why do ANY of these questions matter at all? However, your baby comes into the world doesn’t make it any less incredible – in fact it doesn’t matter one single bit. It doesn’t make you any less of a mother than anyone else, yet I have had many conversations with other women telling me that feel they often feel so much pressure to explain their choices and that they often have felt immense judgement. This is not on, especially when the judgement is at times actually coming from other women, we are in an age where women are rising more than ever, using their voices and striving further for empowerment, so to grow further towards this it’s important to remember to support each other, not pass judgment in these very personal and important life changing moments.
Adding to this, at the end of the day pretty sure nobody really gives a hoot whether the baby came out the sunroof, your veejay (or someone else’s for that matter) and whether you decided to take ALL the drugs or none at all! We all just hope for a safe delivery for both mother and child and healthy baby.
However, YOU choose to birth you baby or feed your baby; boobs or bottle is your business, if they are fed, healthy and happy what is it to someone else? So bloody what if you don’t shed your “baby weight” in no time, so what if you don’t shed it ever AND equally if you fit back into your pre-pregnancy jeans 2 days after – GO you!
Don’t EVER feel the need to explain YOUR PERSONAL choices or experiences.
Everyone is entitled to an opinion, BUT here’s the thing not every opinion NEEDS to be voiced. Remarkably you can also have an opinion silent in your own mind where nobody else hears it *shocking right?!
Have you experienced any of the questions before, or found you felt subject to judgment for your choices?
Feel free to share your experiences in the comments – if you feel comfortable, remember you are not alone – many people often go through similar experiences too and it can be hard to share.
The human experience is defined by the full range of emotions. We can BOTH be grateful for what we have and still feel pain and suffering at the SAME time.
Often women and mothers are made to feel guilty and ungrateful when they are open about their struggles and challenges.
There is a misconception that if you are struggling then you are not grateful… When in reality these two emotions can live side by side. You can be grateful for your pregnancy and still feel the emotions of being crippled by HG. You can be grieving over miscarriage and still be grateful for the children you have. You may have gone through hell and back with IVF to get pregnant, but not be enjoying your pregnancy and in turn be feeling huge amounts of guilt. Like I should be grateful right?! Yet BOTH of these feelings are valid and one does not cancel out the other.
I have been talking with Katherine @thejoyfulhabitscoach and she explained that this way of thinking has a proper term – it’s called TOXIC POSITIVITY. Toxic positivity encourages us to always be happy, always be grateful and always look at the bright side regardless of what we are actually experiencing and feeling. Living a happy and joyful life does not mean denying, avoiding and belittling genuine pain. Making peace with the fact that in life there is both light and shade and allowing yourself to experience and be guided by both allows for us to find comfort in all emotions. Listening and processing challenging emotions build resilience and perspective.
Katherine also shared some practical things to consider; 🌦When others show pain or share challenges your role is to empathize and validate rather than to “cheer them up”. Throwing phases out like you should be grateful or look at the positives isn’t the reason someone or yourself for that matter may need to share. Remember sometimes it feels good just to be listened too and heard.
🌈Allowing yourself to sit in uncomfortable and challenging feelings leads to growth and resilience. Being joyful and positive does not mean avoiding negative emotions at all costs. Negative emotions play a role in guiding us in life as much as positive emotions
☀️Gratitude is a powerful tool, It brings comfort and perspective however it doesn’t ‘cure’ challenges and pain.
I found Katherine’s tips provide a practical and refreshing approach to having conversations with ourselves and others.
You can find more about Katherine, and her mission to help women to find more joy in day to day life by taking control of the little things and creating space, time and energy for the big things on her website here HERE or following her tips mixed with a little fun and humor on Instagram
Have you experienced this yourself? Let me know your thoughts.
Coffee. The universal fuel for parents everywhere. Every parent needs a good cup of coffee and some good food that someone else has prepared. We also want to be able to eat and drink in a relaxing environment where we feel the kids are not only catered for, but are welcome and not going to get bored in under 5 minutes…
So with little ones in tow – where to go?
Luckily Perth is full of places that welcome us and our tiny humans in with open arms. Here are just four of the many Perth family friendly cafes and restaurants to try!
SISTAS BURNS BEACH
This is one of my personal favourites; Sistas at Burns Beach. Set right in front of one of our beautiful beaches – here you will not only find a kid and dog-friendly venue but great coffee, freshly pressed juices, babycinos and delicious food with the very hearty portions. Let us not forget the friendly, accommodating staff who will have you feeling like one of the locals in no time.
Sistas Burn Beach is the perfect place to have a coffee and bite to eat with the family and afterwards there is the option of heading to the beach, take the kids for a play at the huge park and playground right across the road or even go for a ride or walk on the coast path all in one location.
Maybe you’re a Dog parent? Well rest assure your furry children will also feel quite at home here, water bowls available and they even have doggy treats on the menu that can be ordered for your special furry family members.
Inside they also have a selection of indoor plants and gorgeous children’s clothing available to purchase.This is a busy Perth family friendly cafe and it is easy to see why!
Address: 35 OCEAN PDE, Iluka Western Australia 6028
Opening Hours: 7:30 AM – 5:00 PM
Get this for family Sistas have a baby Sista – Lil’ Sistas Yanchep in the outer northern suburbs
Located: 99 Lindsay Boulevard, Yanchep, Wanneroo
Esprezzo cafe is located inside the complex at Noranda shopping complex and has been embraced the local community. Focusing on fresh healthy food, organic fair-trade coffee and tea and friendly, personal customer service.
The coffee is incredible so be sure to have a cup to go along with the cutest babycinos for your mini. There is also a little play area for kids with chalkboard, books and some toys, plenty of high chairs and a toilets/parent room just adjacent to the cafe. Between 8 am – 2 pm they have a Kid Menu available, including Kids bacon and Eggs, toasties, Kid friendly pressed juices and milkshakes.
Esprezzo check the website HERE or take a look at some of the amazing food and coffee on INSTAGRAM
Opening Hours: 8:00am – 5:00pm (Mon-Sat)
Kitchen closes at 2 pm (Cabinet food still available after this time)
Address: Noranda Village S/C, Benara Rd Noranda
ROAR BAR AND GRILL
At Roar Bar and Grill, you can tell this restaurant was created by parents for parents! Here they are passionate about having a space that is for the whole family to enjoy a good meal, relax and ensure everybody is entertained!
Not only do they have a delicious menu for both the kids and the parents, but the standout and point of difference is the amazing playground and shaded bouncing pillow. There is plenty of seating to keep a close eye on your little ones while you get to finish enjoying your meal in full, without ANY complaints of the kids being “bored”, if anything they won’t want to leave. Perth family friendly cafes at its finest!
With a relaxed, comfortable atmosphere and friendly service Roar Bar and Grill is worth a visit.
High Chairs and all parent/children facilities are available.
Located: 23 Port Kembla Dr, Bibra Lake WA 6163
Weekdays : Monday to Wednesday 7am to 3.30pm Thursday to Friday 7am to 9pm
Masonmill Gardens is just an all-round beautiful place to visit with kids and family. The restaurant opens for breakfast and lunch till 4 pm with simple yet delicious favourites on the menu and options for Kids sized breakfasts and lunch. Alternatively, head down for tea or coffee and choose a piece of cake from their large selection before checking out all the activities you can do while here!
Masonmill Gardens has a playground which has a cubby house, rope ramp, stepping logs and slide. The play area is fully fenced off and protected by a safety gate that leads to an undercover patio area.
While there definitely check out the Koi pond, which is fed from a natural underwater spring. You can even get a bag of Fish food from gift shop or main restaurant for $2.50 and feed the Koi fish!
But there is still more! On the grounds across from the coffee shop there is MINI GOLF and bouncy castle which is free for the kids only haha
Mini Golf opening hours:
Saturday 9:00 pm – Last round at 3:30 pm Sunday 9:00 pm – Last round at 3:30 pm
Adults (16 years +) $18 Children $12 Family (2 Adults 2 Children) $45
Remember when you were first learning to drive? Out of our comfort zone, but still equally excited to learn, you have both hands on the wheel, nervous to pull out into traffic, possibly scaring yourself and your driving instructor to death, not to mention the zillion attempts to parallel park… (actually that’s still me now haha)
Well, that’s like starting anything new, whether it’s becoming a parent, a new business/job, maybe its learning to dance or even hitting the gym for the first time ever.
It’s scary at first, it feels like you just might not be able to do it and geez it feels a little embarrassing when you make a mistake. When you are on the journey to making your dreams a reality – there are going to be times you feel completely out of your depth, question yourself and occasionally take two steps forward and one step back.
But every day you are learning, practising and getting better. With hard work, persistence, a little help and guidance along the way – your confidence will grow, your skills will improve and soon just like driving it won’t feel hard anymore, it will be second nature.
So NEVER give up. Believe in yourself. You can and will learn, and continue to improve- just keep on hustling!
You will get there – just like driving, fast forward to now, you’re cruising out of the driveway without a worry in the world, coffee to your side, music on, kids in the back and it just feels like second nature now, all except the parallel parking of course… but hey we do always have to keep learning along the way too.
I had NO idea but when you get people on the topic of children, the number you want to have or whether to have any at all, it brings out huge amounts of opinions in people. It’s a topic that should and shouldn’t get throw around and its thought to be acceptable to comment outright on somebody’s sex life. Crazy right?
Here’s what’s not acceptable is the belief that it is okay to comment on somebody’s choice whether to have kids or the amount which they have or may want
Personally this is how I’ve heard it go way too many times…
1 Child – It’s not enough “when will you have another? “Are you having any more?” “They will be lonely…”
2 Children – the perfect number especially if you have a boy and a girl because if you have 2 of the same sex – are you going to try for a girl? (or boy?)
3 Children – Acceptable but you are done now, right? Unless you have all one gender then you simply NEED to have another.
4+ plus – Oh wow don’t you guys have a TV? Oh wow, that’s a big family! You guys aren’t going to have anymore now, right? Oh was it planned? You need to keep your legs closed (all of these I’ve heard in my last 26weeks)
NO kids / I don’t want kids. Well that’s a statement that most commonly prompts total disbelief! “When are you going to have one?” “Oh but eventually right?” “You will regret it later in life!” “Why not?”
It is not okay to comment on someone else’s personal choice Yet some people seem to think it’s appropriate to ask deeply personal questions or make these statements.
Just stop. Think before you speak.
Children, no children its none of anyone’s business.
Put kindly, it simply doesn’t affect you and often there is a huge range of reasons that are behind these decisions, some being incredibly personal, even distressing.
And if you receive these comments or statements YOU don’t need to provide a explanation whatsoever. NONE.
You do you. Your life, your choice.
Have you received these comments yourself before? Feel free to share them here or join the discussion over on my Instagram post HERE
Sleep. Something I took for granted and should have appreciated in my pre-motherhood days way more than I did.
My husband and I had our third daughter Octavia in September last year. I was that person that had two other children that had just naturally slept well through the night.
So having my third baby, I naively assumed Octavia would be the same – oh how wrong I was.
By nearly six months, Octavia was still waking every 2 hours or more during the night and only catnapping during the day.
Sleep deprivation was once used as a form of torture, so why was this miniature human torturing me? Her naps barely gave me the time to run around to do a few chores and make a cup of coffee. I was exhausted every day, and the fatigue was becoming overwhelming.
I spent the little time my baby was sleeping wondering what I was doing wrong.
What did sleep felt like again? I was drinking all the coffee, wishing my husband was capable of breastfeeding and googling “how to get my baby to sleep”.
One late night scrolling through Instagram for the thirtieth time, I found the account that would save my sanity and help give both Octavia and I the sleep we both desperately needed. I had stumbled across Hayley from Slumber and Sprout.
Hayley is a fellow Perth mum, certified paediatric sleep consultant and owner of Slumber and Sprout. She provides easy to follow tips, an abundance of advice on her socials. She offers a variety of packages to help get your little ones sleeping soundly through the night and napping well through the day. I learnt so many new things about babies and sleep; for example, how much day sleep our bubbas actually need
3 months: 4 – 5 hours
6-7 months: 3.5 – 4 hours
9-11 months: 3 – 3.5 hours
12 months: 2.5 -3 hours
18-24 months: 2 – 2.5 hours
3 years: 1 hour
Our little humans will also go through FIVE sleep regressions by the age of two. At four months, 8-10 months, 12 months, 18 months and 24 months!
How did it work?
I started by explaining my babies current sleep situation, and Hayley devised a plan to set up healthy sleep habits and resolve the sleep issues, based personally on our family. It is not a one size fits all approach which I loved, because as a mum of older children, Octavia’s sleep needed to work around school runs and other extracurricular activities. I had access to a private portal online to log all of Octavia’s sleep and activity throughout the day. Hayley closely monitored her progress and made suggestions accordingly.
With just the simplest of changes within two weeks, Octavia was napping during the day like a champ! Soon Octavia went from waking every two hours and only cap napping, to now waking only once a night and having solid naps during the day. In turn, Craig and I stopped feeling like coffee-fuelled zombies every day, and the whole mood of the household lightened.
I found it hard to ask for help at first, but I’m so happy I did. It doesn’t matter if you are a first-time mum or you are a mum of many, each child is different, so there is no shame in getting some help and support if you need it, especially when it comes to getting a good nights sleep!
Need some help getting your little one sleeping too?
Hayley provides a range of packages and services including in-home sleep consultations here in Perth
You can find out more about these services on her website HERE
This week has been tough, literally no sleep for this Mama – I’m currently wishing my eye bags were designer ones haha.
So lack of sleep coupled with juggling the other kids, writing, scrubbing muddy softball uniforms and a list of engagements that I had taken on, it was safe to say I was not only run down physically but mentally as well.
I had kept saying YES to everything, I hate letting people down but in turn I was letting myself down and my family was ending up with a tired, grumpy mama and wife.
By saying NO to others when you need to, it’s like saying YES to yourself.
How often do we say yes to all the invites, to the extra shift at work, to baking the cupcakes for the school sale and putting pressure on ourself to do all the things?
It honestly can be so hard to say NO but if you don’t sometimes you aren’t allowing yourself to say YES to things you need for yourself.
Here are some ways to say no to others and start saying YES to yourself:
Decline Invitations. Start by politely declining any invites to things that you cannot fit in or simply don’t want to go to.
2. Be honest – Don’t feel as if you need to make an excuse just to say No. If you are exhausted just say it how it is: people appreciate honesty over an excuse.
3. Schedule yourself in. Pop yourself in the diary like for example I go to yoga on a Wednesday at 6:30pm, so if something comes up, I work around it NOT cancel it.
Treat it as an important appointment for yourself.
4. Let go of the GUILT. This can be hard but by saying yes to everything you ultimately will be sacrificing something – that might time with your own family or actually running yourself down mentally and physically. So let go of the guilt. People that love and care about you won’t want you to feel guilty anyway.
5. Say YES to the things that matter. When you do say YES, do it for things that really matter to you, say yes when you know you can complete the tasks without draining yourself completely and do it with your heart.
Hope you say YES to the things you want more often by being less busy because you have said No when you need to.
So this past week I let go of the guilt and said NO cleaning, especially as we had just finished painting the week before and said YES to the offer from Fantastic Services to collaborate. So this meant getting the awesome team from Fantastic Services to come and do a full Spring clean, which after all the sanding and painting was something we really needed.
The team gave the house a full Spring clean while I chilled out, drank my coffee while it was still hot, got some work done AND Octavia slept the whole time!! She loves the sound of the vacuum!
If you want a break and a clean house you can use my code: justyouraveragerose for $20 credit towards your first clean or service with Fantasic services! You can check out their services HERE #jyarcollab
Period Underwear. While I’d seen and heard about them, I never actually given them a go. I mainly worn tampons and didn’t like the feeling of a pad – plus they always irritated my skin. I was extremely skeptical, I had so many questions I wanted to know like, will they leak? Will I feel unclean? Would they smell? Would I feel wet or can they really be a total replacement for disposable feminine products?
So being curious about them I gave them a go.
I received these three pairs from ModiBodi. I got a moderate to heavy pair, a heavy to overnight pair and one pair of light to moderate for the end of my cycles and spotting. I decided I would wash them daily to try them out first, before buying any extra pairs.
DID THEY WORK?
Its a YES from me! I not only tested them out during the week of my period but I tried them out while exercising, skipping and bouncing on the trampoline with the kids. I promise you after having three kids, its not uncommon for me to experience bladder leaks and I have had my fair share especially when laughing really hard. So I’m happy to report Modibodi passed with flying colours.
What I also love is that there are more than one choice of underwear style in each different absorbency level.
So how do they feel on?
Honestly, just like regular underwear, they are surprisingly slim, not bulky or thick. The overnight pairs have extra lining right to the back, but not bulky at all. It’s not like wearing a pad; you don’t feel wet or uncomfortable; it does feel just like regular underwear. The fabrics on all three pairs were soft and comfortable on the skin.
OVERNIGHT WEAR – the verdict
The first pair of Modibodi I ever wore was to bed; they were the Classic full Brief for Heavy-Overnight. Personally for me – I like that these are a larger brief, especially for sleeping in. The thin lining protects you to the back of the underwear. Now I’m a lover of white sheets and bedding, AND I move a lot during my sleep, so this would be a good test. They were secure and so comfortable to sleep in that I woke up and had forgotten I had my period at first; I felt dry, I was comfortable; I checked the bed – clean. No leaks! I was impressed, a total game-changer for overnight.
DOWN TO THE NITTY GRITTY – The questions I wanted answered.
Did they smell have an odor? NO
Do they Stain? No they are stain resistant
Do you feel wet? NO
Could they totally replace pads and tampons altogether?
Yes, they absolutely could. Modibodi could either totally replace them altogether or be used in conjunction with them for extra protection.
How did they go after coughing or sneezing during your period?
This is a question I received on Instagram and from a few friends.
They held up just fine. They absorbed the extra liquid after the cough/squeeze and went back to feeling dry.
Would you feel confident wearing White while wearing them?
Well to be honest I’d be worried wearing white during my period even with a tampon, pad and underwear all on at the same time! haha! This underwear would be perfect to accompany a pad or tampon for even more protection from leaks. But in saying that I did wear just my Moderate-heavy seam free pair with my new pink pants and all was fine! Each to their own in this case I think!
But HOW exactly do they work?
I’ll leave this one up to the experts. See exactly how the technology all works HERE
How many pairs would I need?
This will depend on your individual flow, how often you change and intend to wash.
I wore a pair for over-night, changed into a new pair for during the day, lets just say 9-5 and then back into another pair for the night ahead. So basically 2 pairs – one for night and one for day wear. 3 pairs on a particular heavy day or if I went to the gym. I now have a total of 7 pairs of Modibodi which I find works for my flow, plus it allows for washing in-between.
I have three heavy-over-night pairs, three moderate-heavy pairs and 1 light to moderate pair. Most of mine are seam free styles so I don’t get any lines but I love the sensual hi-waist bikini style with the lace detail. It’s great for the confidence to wear a style that makes you feel good, and that also doubles as protection, especially during your period.
Washing and Changing. Easy to wash just rinse under cold water till water runs clear and then pop in the washing machine. If you need to change during the day while out, (I personally didn’t but just in case) put them in a wet bag.
What absorbency should I get?
Below I have popped the information for the each of the absorbency levels you can get. I found this really useful to help me decide what would be the best for me.
For: Using alone on heavy period days, overnight for protecting your white sheets, or for those ‘I almost weed my pants’ leaks
My reasons to initially try Modibodi also came from the fact that I am a mother of three daughters, my eldest being 12 this year. I wanted to find a product, that would allow her to feel secure, save her from any leaks and be super easy to use especially when dealing with first periods and navigating through a new phase of growing up. I honestly wish I had these growing up and have bought Indi few pairs from the super cute teen range RED to pop in her toiletry bag for school or outings away from home.
Through trialing these period and pee proof underwear I have found that, Modibodi has been a total game changer for me. Periods, incontinence, sweating are all normal parts of life, I am so happy to have found a reusable and sustainable product that feels comfortable to sleep, work in and exercise in while giving me peace of mind.
I nervously do a full try, showing the fits of all my Modibodi underwear – these are saved in my Highlights on Instagram
Full Disclosure. I decided to write about my experience with Modibodi for myself just to share my experience. They gifted my first three pairs to try out. I can not talk about something I don’t believe in and asked if they required anything in return, as I need time to try things properly. This is where they got me, they said nothing but if you like them – we would love you to share your experience. No guidelines or time frames, to me, this spoke volumes about the brand itself, and so I accepted. Since then I have bought four extra pairs to complete my collection, the sports shorts and some underwear from the teen range for my daughter. I have since been given a discount code for my readers which can be found HERE
I cry for others, I feel a lot, sometimes it’s overwhelming, I hate seeing others hurting, but its a rare occurrence that I cry for myself.
Most of the time I withdraw and feel a sense of numbness.
Today I’m not well, feeling a little sorry for myself and am sitting listening to the big storm rolling in… I just fed Octavia and placed her down to sleep, I watched her for a moment and all of a sudden my heart hurt so badly that tears starting rolling down my face. I thought without the loss of the two babies before her, Octavia would not be here.
I had forgotten that hurt for a while, but just like that out of the blue, the band-aid had lifted.
I could not imagine life without this little human, I am so grateful for her but mind still drifted to the what if’s – its a strange thought.
I had remembered my second miscarriage in the emergency room, I was numb.
I remember laying in the maternity ward recovering after, listening to the newborn cries from the neighbouring rooms. My mind checked out. Numb.
No tears at all.
12 weeks of carrying her. I came home from the hospital feeling empty and alone. I sat on the couch leaning on Craig, I didn’t move. Then it came, I cried for what felt like whole day till my face was swollen and puffy. All the feelings, extreme anger, guilt because I had two girls already, guilt that others could have things worse than me, feeling my body had failed and feeling complete loneliness.
Then like a switch going off, I went back to the dry numbness – I didn’t cry anymore.
I felt the sadness, pain and pushed it away to a locked space inside where it sits and lets me process but I do not cry. This at times has led people to think I’m tough or that it doesn’t hurt, this is not so I just process differently.
Since then I’ve grown and learnt so much. Learnt Its ok to feel, it’s ok to cry and it’s ok not to cry because everyone reacts and copes differently.
It’s ok to be thankful for what you have and still be sad about what you have lost.
It’s ok to mourn, to remember, to speak about it & you do not need to feel guilty about any of it because life is not always a comfortable conversation or pretty picture.
And so today, as I looked at my beautiful baby girl, I shed a few tears for my babies that did not touch this Earth and that is ok too.