Thursday, 20 August 2009

Ways to help parents with babies.

The other day a friend said that she'd like to help with Maya but doesn't know how. I remember before having Maya I felt the same way. I had no idea how to help people with babies. So I thought I'd write a post on things that have helped me.
  1. People bringing meals! That was a huge help. Before Maya was born I did make and freeze quite a few meals, but you can NEVER have too many meals. I am so grateful to my mother in law who filled our freezer with meals after Maya was born. With the meals I had made plus her meals plus a few meals from others plus buying take away and occasionally cooking we made it to about 3 months before having to cook dinners regularly. After a long, hard day with a baby the last thing you want to do is cook. I didn't even want Greg cooking. I wanted his help with Maya in the evenings when she was at her most unsettled. So those meals were of such a big help to us. And if you can't cook bringing take away is equally of help. A friend of mine came to visit around lunch time and brought pizzas. The extra benefit of that was - no washing up. :)

  2. Offering to do dishes, hang washing, vacuum, etc. When Maya was a newborn I didn't have the time or energy to do much housework. It was a great help when someone came round to visit and offered to help with something or asked if there was anything they could do.

  3. In the early days it helped when someone offered to buy anything we needed from the shops before popping round.

  4. Offering to play with Maya. This was a little hard at times with Maya's fear of strangers, but if Maya is OK being left with someone to play I can get other things around the house done (and this is probably more fun for the visitor than doing my housework. :)

  5. Taking Maya for a walk. I actually think this is a great way to help. Maya likes going for a walk and it doesn't matter who takes her. Then I can have some time on my own! :) And you don't need to know anything about looking after babies. No nappy changing, feeding, etc required. You just need to know how to walk and how to push a stroller while walking.

  6. Babysitting. Though you would have to feel comfortable with minding someone else's child for an extended period of time and know how to change nappies, feed, etc.
If you are a parent I'd love to know what has helped or does help you.

Wednesday, 19 August 2009

Maya's laugh.

It's so hard to capture Maya's laugh on video because as soon as she sees the camera she either starts posing or tries to grab the camera off me. I was finally able to capture her laugh by hiding and jumping out at her - hence the bad, jerky footage. But don't you just love her giggle. :)

Friday, 14 August 2009

Mummy hugs.

I love that a hug from me is all that is required to fix any of Maya's problems. I know that one day she will have problems that can't be fixed by a simple mummy hug. For now I enjoy the moments I can bring great comfort and relief to Maya with the warmth of my body and the comfort of my arms.

Friday, 7 August 2009

What is normal?

As someone who has worked with children I know that each child has an individual personality and unique abilities. Why is it then that children are expected to achieve and learn the same things as other children when their abilities clearly differ?

Of course there are some common things that need to be learnt in order to function in society. Like using money, understanding turn taking in conversation, dressing oneself...... But there is still a problem with this. Not all children are capable of learning these "simple" things. Some children have disabilities which prevent them from either being able to understand these concepts or they are physically unable to undertake these tasks.

Parents want their children to be "normal", but what is "normal"?? Shouldn't we be looking at each child's abilities and supporting them to achieve what they can achieve?

In spite of their abilities and disabilities I hope any children I have and may have will be encouraged by me and others to achieve realistic goals and encouraged to pursue their interests. I hope that they will not be compared to others or compared to the "norm".

I hope my children are their own unique normal - whatever that may be.