Tuesday 29 April 2008

i'm going to my happy place

I keep wondering if the hypnotherapy is actually going to work. When I think about our pending holiday I feel a bit panicky, but I think that has to do with worrying about the logistics of travelling across the ocean with two small children. So to "test out" the hypnotherapy, I've been envisioning the flight and turbulence to see how I react. During quiet moments, I focus my mind on being on the plane, the hum of the engine, then the dreaded *ding* of the seat belt sign illuminating. I imagine feeling bumps and shudders, then slight drops. I breathe in deeply then exhale the tension. The calm soothing voice of the hypnotherapist plays back in my mind and I tell myself that the fear is all in my mind.

Yep, I've officially gone cuckoo caca.

Friday 25 April 2008

happiness is...

...looking down at Mia whilst breastfeeding and having her look at me and give me a little wave.

look into my eyes; not around my eyes

I really don't like flying. I like travelling and I like going to new and exciting places (especially if it involves outlet malls), but I hate having to take an airplane to get there. Actually, I'm not afraid of flying - I don't mind take off and landing, or being up in the air - I'm afraid of crashing. It's the turbulence and the anticipation of turbulence that makes me want to run away screaming. Plummeting 30,000 feet to our deaths. That sort of thing. It's not like Lost, you know.

So as my kids get older and Jack is much more aware of everything around him, I don't want them to learn to be afraid of flying from me. Plus, I'm fed up of feeling like a nutcase when I fly, particularly considering that I used to love it when I was a kid. I want to look forward to our flights and enjoy having 8-10 hours of nothing to do but reading, watching films, and spending time with the kids.

I decided to see a hypnotherapist to help me get over this fear, encouraged by the positive experience I had with hypnotherapy antenatal CDs when I was pregnant with Mia. "What a bucket of caca!", I hear you say. Well, maybe. But if it helps me overcome my fear of flying, why not? Phobias are all in the mind, so "reprogramming" your brain to respond appropriately to the situation seems a sensible solution. The hypnotherapy didn't involve a middle-aged guy with a pocket watch going "You're getting sleeeeeepyyyyy" or getting me to cluck like a chicken. I think. Hmmm. No, pretty sure that didn't happen. It involved going into a state of deep relaxation, mentally going through the process of taking a flight, and getting suggestions and coping techniques from the hypnotherapist during the times I felt anxious. It was strange and interesting; I felt incredibly relaxed but extremely aware of what was going on. It was very much like when you close your eyes to go to sleep and your brain goes through a list of things you need to do, replays scenes from the day, etc. I "woke" feeling very relaxed and energetic, and slept very well the nights after I had my sessions.

We fly to Toronto in two weeks, so we shall see if any of it worked. At the moment, thinking about flying doesn't bother me at all and I'm very much looking forward to our trip home. Whether or not this is still the case when we're above the clouds and that goddamn little seat belt light comes on is to be determined. Fingers crossed.


Sunday 20 April 2008

observations from my boy

Jack: "Oh, look! I can see a lion!"
Me: "A lion? Is he nice?"
Jack: "No. He's a little bit rude."


Jack: "I'm having a dinner party. Would you like to come?"
Me: "What are we eating?"
Jack: "Hot dogs and gravy."


Me: "Say bye-bye to Daddy - he's off to the gym."
Jack: [wagging a stern finger at Paul] "You mustn't get any time outs at the gym!"


Jack: "You need to talk to my poo. You need to tell it to go 'splash' into the water so it can have a party."


Jack, upon seeing me get out of the shower: "You have a fluffy willy!!!" [points and laughs hysterically]

Monday 14 April 2008

Maltezer Cake

Maltezer Cake
Originally uploaded by Lisa Durbin
Oh, look - here's another photo I meant to blog about months ago. Here's the Maltezer cake (I think Maltezers are the same as Milk Duds in the States) I made for Jack's birthday. It was for Jack to take into nursery, and apparently it went down really well with everyone. This one's from Nigella's "Feast", which was that book she did before she went all funny and started pretending to ride public transportation and shop at Waitrose. Remember?

I was watching that godawful programme "Market Kitchen" on UKTV Food which is presented by that godawful Irish woman whose name escapes me at the moment. Said Irish woman made the remark, "The Americans don't make anything from scratch." Apparently all of you Yanks only make things that come from Betty Crocker, you poor souls. It's no wonder you need to resort to things like Krispy Kreme wedding cakes - if only you knew how to do a fruitcake! Bless your little cotton socks. With the demise of the Easy Bake Oven, little girls just don't learn how to bake anymore.*

*(Yes, I know Americans make things from scratch. The Barefoot Contessa told me so.)

Toro! Toro!

Toro! Toro!
Originally uploaded by Lisa Durbin
What kind of a cruel mother runs to get a camera instead of delicately extracting the breakfast cereal from her daughter's nose?

That would be me.

Sunday 6 April 2008

Hey. Come here often?

Hey. Come here often?
Originally uploaded by Lisa Durbin
I have so much to say and almost every day I think to myself "Oooh! Must blog about this!" and yet here my blog sits, collecting cobwebs. Must try harder.

Mia is now pulling herself up to stand...using anything she can. Footstools, chairs, sofas, dogs, my legs (whilst digging her razor sharp nails into my shins to pull herself up), dog beds, you name it, she'll use it to stand. Today, she started crusing. This is a huge improvement over the Stand There and Scream Because I'm Very Annoyed About Not Being Able to Cruise phase. You can see how pleased she is about this development.

I've now entered "You're STILL breastfeeding?" territory, which seems to be of particular concern when people notice that Mia has four sharp teeth. She actually hasn't bitten me since she went on strike a while ago, and even then it didn't do any damage - it startled me more than anything else. I was trying to figure out the logistics of continuing to breastfeed when I return to work and have been very pleased (and relieved) to learn that I can simply drop the daytime feeds and continue to nurse whenever we're together without having to do anything special to prepare or compensate.

Jack and Mia are both taking swimming classes and it's going...swimmingly (sorry.) I'm so happy that Jack's enjoying the classes because he hasn't taken one since he was 10 months old. He's been in a pool a few times since then, but hasn't taken a proper class in a very long time. He's taken to them with no problems, and he loves having Mia and I there to watch. Mia has her class immediately following Jack's, so we sit and watch until it's our turn. Mia is fantastic in the pool. She's been underwater a few times now, and has even done some "swimming" when the instructor passed her to me under the water and let her swim to me a short distance.

I've got some great movie clips of Jack - I'll upload them to YouTube soon!