My sugar detox journal…hidden sugars to watch out for!

I finished my 21 days of trying my best to go off sugar.

HiddenSugarInfographicAlthough I am happy with my progress,  I am not entirely happy with how the 21 days went.

Why?

  1.  I had about 4 “cheat” days
  2. I didn’t cut out ALL sugar (for example: Honey, fruit and certain refined carbs)
  3. I don’t think I experienced the FULL BENEFIT of really detoxing from sugar… And this is what I am after – really getting to that point of moving beyond the withdrawal and cravings and starting to experience all the benefits.  Like…. better and a more stable mood, better sleep, clarity of mind, more energy and some weight loss.

So… What I am going to try to do over the next 21 days is to:

  1. Consistently cut out all forms of sugar (Including honey, fruit and hidden sugar in snacks – see this cool picture to the left…)
  2. Lower my overall carb intake (Mostly for me:  Bread; rusks; wraps; rice; potatoes; pasta; pizza)
  3. Decrease my caffeine intake to 2 cups max per day – mostly to help with the anxiety and insomnia.
  4. Trying not to get too ravenous (this is when I make my poorest food choices) – so filling my tummy with good stuff whenever I am hungry.

Here is a great list of all those other names under which sugar hides in foods:

According to the USDA and other sources, alternative sugar ingredients or names to watch out for when reading labels include:

There also “healthier” sugars, including coconut palm sugar, honey and blackstrap molasses. Generally since these are far less processed (especially real, raw honey), they are OK in moderation but still a source of sugar to keep to small amounts.

So today is another day 1 for me… wish me luck!

Love Helene x x x

My sugar detox journal – this is hard!

I am currently on day 15 of my 21 DAY attempt to detox myself from sugar.

The first 10 days were relatively easy for me – I think it was due to my human will power doing fairly well initially…

 Then my old habits started to taunt me… Let me explain:

I am a stay at home mommy of 21 month old Lucas.  My GO TO for when I am feeling a bit tired/bored/lonely/emotional is mostly coffee and sugar if there is any form of sugar in the house.

So a couple of days ago I gave my little boy a biscuit.  He didn’t want it.  For a moment I was in a battle in my head, and then I just ate the cookie… And then I finished the whole bag (kiddies bag I have to add in my defense 😉 And then I had some fruit cake that I had in the house the previous day for my in-laws visiting.

That old – almost uncontrolled way of eating – took over for that moment…

Later that same day I went to the mall and considered stopping for a piece of cheese cake – because (my old way of thinking) I might as well cheat properly!  And I was feeling tired and like I “deserved” it (again an old habit of mine…).

I didn’t give in to the cheesecake which was an achievement for me.  So the next day I just  kept going where I left off.

So be aware of your old ways of thinking… For those sugary snacks in the house… And don’t beat yourself up if you slip up – just carry on the following day.

Weight loss? Not dramatic in any way – perhaps because I havent given up carbs too.  But I have probably lost almost 1 kg.

But it’s about more than weight for me – its about my health and knowing what sugar does to the brain and body…

After the 21 days…?  The other day I listened to a podcast of Dr Caroline Leaf and she said it takes 3 cycles of 21 days to really create new habits… So perhaps I will push myself a little longer… and even look at cutting out some other things like too much processed food/perhaps I will be a bit more strict with my carb intake.  I’ll decide when I get there…

For now…baby steps and just keep going moment by moment…

Skincare must haves for a busy mom

You can spend 100’s of Rands on make up and still be frustrated with the end result if your canvass (your skin) isn’t in a good condition. Some lucky individuals are blessed with a genetically beautiful flawless skin, but most of us need to put in some work – and a couple of good quality products.

Below are my steps to the essential skin care – focussing on ANTI-AGEING.

Your products can look a little different if you are working towards targeting a more specific skin care concern like adult acne or hyperpigmentation for example. Check out my blogs about acne and pigmentation.

I am also just looking at the ESSENTIALS today – there are quite a bit more that you can do at home like exfoliators and masks – but more about that in another blog 😉

So here are my top skincare must haves for a busy mom!

Essential Morning routine:

Step 1: CLEANSE PROPERLY

Gentle Foaming Cleanser from Theravine

Make sure you cleanse your skin every morning and every evening with a MILD cleanser suitable to your PREFERENCE (gel/foam/cream/oil/liquid water based cleanser etc) and SKIN TYPE (oily/dry/combination). I currently use the Gentle Foaming Cleanser from Theravine (Available at salons or get in touch with me) retails for R298.  I also quite like the Loreal cleanser: Pure Clay detox face wash. R88

What do I look for in a cleanser? Not expensive (it really doesn’t have to be); gentle yet effective and I prefer a foamy gel in comparison to a cream.

Step 2: USE AN ANTIOXIDANT as your serum for the day.  Antioxidants have antiageing benefits as well as being super important to fight harmful free radicals during the day.  I am currently using the brilliant Phloretin CF from Skinceuticals. Thanks to my friend who was generous to give this as my 40th birthday present!

Step 3: USE A GOOD MOISTURISER on your face and neck.  I currently enjoy the Nourishing and Firming Day cream from Theravine for the DAY and the amazing moisturizer from Lamelle, Dermaheal Cellular Repair Cream.

Optional extra: Use an eye cream – check out my blog about eye creams here.

Step 4: USE A GOOD QUALITY sunblock every single day – check out my blog about sunscreen here and here.  My personal favourite is Heliocare. – either the SPF50 Gel or the SPF Tinted (this replaces my foundation on most days now because it is so quick and easy!)  Check out my blog on make-up tips for a busy mom HERE.

 

Essential Evening routine:

Step 1: CLEANSE PROPERLY

I start by cleansing off my eye make up. I love this water based cleanser from Garnier – retails for R80. Bioderma also has one, but is more expensive – retails for R230. Then I cleanse as in the morning routine.

Optional extra: Tone if necessary (not essential), sometimes necessary if you wear a lot of make up to ensure your skin is squaky.clean! You want it to be clean for your evening serum/cream to penetrate.

Step 2: USE AN ANTI-AGEING SERUM

So this might look different than your morning serum.  At night it is a good idea to introduce anti-ageing ingredients like Vitamin A (MY FIRM FAVOURITE – it is one of the most well researched and proven anti-ageing ingredients!) or anti-ageing PEPTIDES or GROWTH FACTORS or even exfoliating ingredients like alpha and beta hydroxy acids.  I currently use Retacnyl (on doctor prescription) but only one evening per week (Retinol is very active and the skin will initially peel upon starting usage).  On other nights I enjoy the Collagen M/P Serum from Matriskin for its amazing anti-ageing benefits due to anti-ageing peptides.

Option extra: Use an eye cream – check out my blog about eye creams here.

Step 3: USE A GOOD MOISTURISER – Same as morning routing.

Please feel free to email me your questions about your skin care routine!

Love Helene xxx

We walked down the aisle…

On the 8th of July 2014 my dad passed away.  I spent as much time at his bed side as I possibly could during those last couple of weeks.

He still walked me down the aisle on my wedding day.  He couldn’t stay long at the reception.  I am so happy that he could listen to my speech.  A part of it was specifically for him.  I probably didn’t realise at the moment that it was the last time that I would be able to tell him all those things.

About 6 weeks after my wedding day, he passed away.  I saw my dad cry for the second time – the 1st time was at his mother’s funeral.  This time it was on one of the days that I sat at his bed side next to him.  I think he realised that his time was coming and that we were actually saying goodbye every time I came into his room to see how he was.  We’ve never in my entire life shared a tear together and crying with him on that day putting my head on his shoulder, touched my heart in such a big way – I will never forget it.

I would go into the bathroom to cry on my own, almost every time I was there.  I think I perhaps cried more during this time than after he passed away.  It’s an undescribable feeling to see your parent slip away slowly every time you see him.  Every time he looked a little more fragile, his face a little more drawn, his hair a little bit more white and sparse.  The look in his eyes also changed over the weeks.

Another day I will never forget is the last time I saw him.  It was a Saturday afternoon.  He was sitting in his chair by the window with the oxygen pipes attached to his nose, the oxygen machine’s noise audible from behind the bathroom door.  My husband, my mom and I chatted about some trivial things which he just listened to quietly.  I had to leave for the airport.  I went to him to say goodbye.  I remember vividly touching his head and feeling how soft his hair has become.  I remember looking at his nose and thinking what a perfectly formed nose he has – good genes (as he used to say!).  I gave him a hug feeling how fragile and thin he has become.  I told him that I loved him very much.  And he told me that he also loved me very much.  In hindsight I know that HE KNEW.  I will never forget the look in his eyes when he looked up at me. His eyes looked big and darker than usual.  And it was filled with a mixture of sadness, love and a tired desperation of a man who has struggled and experienced inexplainable pain.

And that was it.  I had a dad for 36 years.  Not long enough in my opinion. He should have been around longer.  Since he’s been gone – theres been so many times when I thought – if only he was still around.  You are never prepared for these types of life altering occurrences.  How can you prepare – you can’t.

I cry instantly whenever I think of him.  And I still miss him.  You get so used to your dad just BEING THERE.  I was privileged to have a dad who I knew for sure loved me and would have done ANYTHING for me.  Not that he spoilt me – no it was a kind of invisible security net that I just knew was there  and if disaster would ever strike and I had nowhere else to go – he would be there.  If all else or everyone else failed – he would be there.

Since he has been gone, I’ve been wondering what is this lack that I feel.  And I think I’ve figured it out – for me.  I can’t speak for anyone else.  There’s a kind of safety that only a DAD can offer a woman.  A kind of love that is unique between a dad and his daughter.  And we weren’t particularly emotionally close – we didn’t have conversations about boyfriends or my emotions around a camp fire or had dad and daughter coffee dates.

But still – he was my DAD.  And THAT special safety and unconditional love I experienced from him, can’t be replaced.  It left me feeling almost a little vulnerable, a little more exposed in a way, out in the open.

This is life.  You grow up – become a woman who then perhaps becomes a parent and that safety net for someone else.  You become the strong one.  You learn that missing someone and being aware of these places in your heart left empty by people gone – is part of life.  And you pick yourself up, remember only the good and learn to live WELL together with these places of grief and sadness in your heart.  It doesn’t define you – its just and always will be a part of your heart.

What the sugar?? My sugar detox journal…

I am doing a sugar detox for 21 days. I am currently on day 6.

Why I decided to do a sugar detox? I feel that I have become addicted to sugar and that it was starting to affect my mood in a negative way. It is a personal mission of mine to achieve mental wellness, and I know its up to me to make it happen. About 6 months ago I started suffering from insomnia and this has seriously spurred me on to do everything I possibly can to start sleeping better again… Sugar potentially being one of the aspects that can affect your sleep negatively.

SugarWithdrawl_Graphic_1-768x3464
So the insomnia and mood issues are my main reasons for going on this sugar detox. (To be perfectly honest, other reasons for me include potential weight loss and the prevention of diseases.)
What a sugar detox looks like for me? A book that has helped me a lot is “I quit sugar” from Sarah Wilson. But there are many many books. So for me it basically means cutting out ALL sugar. A quick list would be : Actual sugar (brown, white) ; honey; any foods or sauces with lots of sugar added (check labels)and fruit (actual fruit, juices, dried). I am not cutting out all carbs – I have decided to make this about SUGAR.
How am I feeling? I felt perfectly fine for the 1st 2 days. On day 3 I started really craving and missing my sugar fix (usually cake/chocolate/sweets). On day 4 I started struggling emotionally and day 5 I felt completely depressed and tearful. I wondered whether this could be a detox symptom and found out that it absolutely can be…(have a look at this link.)

The start is always the HARDEST. But I have found that once you get started it gets easier.

It’s almost like you need to learn how to trust yourself again too. Trusting yourself that you will honour a decision that you make to commit to something. Even if no one else is checking up on you.

Day 6: Yesterday we celebrated my bother’s 46th birthday and since his wife always bakes with zero sugar I thought the birthday cake was a gluten and sugar-free version. After this 1st couple of bites I realised that it wasnt this time 😉

For a moment I felt like I was a failure and had to start all over again.

Then I decided to be kind to myself. So I am adding an extra day to my 21 days and today I am continuing as normal despite my little “glitch”.

People trying to eat healthier can often be so hard on themselves for having a weak moment – that weak moment then becomes a weak month of year… These type of negative emotions and guilt just never serve you.

So currently I am still on day 6 and so far so good. I had a scone this morning with butter and cream (no jam) and coffee without sugar. Also had a seed cracker with sugar-free peanut butter. And I am feeling a lot better today in terms of my mood…

I will do another post in 1 week!!! I will write about which sugar alternatives are BAD and which ones are OK. I personally like Xylitol… And of course an update of how it’s going with my detox…

Why not join me?

Love Helene xxx

20180707_133647_000.jpg3c17e9c86d309f43f7325071b8986d51-zoom

 

All of this unpacking is getting me nowhere…

“I got hijacked at gun point infront of the psychologist’s practise at her house in Cape Town…”

The journey of mental and emotional wellness looks different for every single person…

For the past 8 years or so I have been struggling on and off with bouts of anxiety and depression which was mainly linked to certain significant life events/experiences (Situational depression/anxiety).

The 1st time I went to see a psychiatrist almost 8 years ago, she “diagnosed” me with an anxiety disorder and gave me a script for an anti-depressant – that’s it.

I spilled out my heart to her for an hour – about how I was starting to feel generally down, almost like I was looking for more meaning in life and starting to struggle with regrets and my current work and relationship situation. I was hoping for some advice, some tips… but no – just a piece of paper and off you go.

That’s where my love hate relationship with the world of psychology and psychiatry started.

After the psychiatrist visit, I tried out about 3 different psychologists – to talk it out. They call it talk therapy – and together with exercise, taking your medication (if you are on any) it was supposed to be the best way to manage anxiety/depression.

Well, psychologist number 1 kept on referring to her text books and showing me diagrams of how my parents kept me under their protective wings for too long and how that has affected me negatively.
…A lot of talking and getting nowhere.

Psychologist number 2 – I rocked up at her house in Mowbray and got hijacked in front of her house leaving me standing on the side-walk after having been robbed of all my belongings including my car at gun point.

…Funny thing is – she seemed rather calm and not too shocked about the incident – and I decided NOT to start a relationship with her – go figure?!

Psychologist number 3 – I had high hopes. She seemed like a nice enough soft-spoken afrikaans lady. Sympathetic eyes. I gave her 5 sessions. Did it help me – no. We unpacked and unpacked and unpacked (my past life) until it felt as if all my “clothes” were strewn across the floor – all “deurmekaar” – and I felt worse and couldn’t make sense of anything.

Everytime I asked her, so WHAT CAN I DO NOW TO MAKE THINGS BETTER, what kind of action plan can I take going FORWARD, like practical LIFE SKILLS… – she seemed a bit confused and unable to answer me. The last straw was the day I left ALOT more depressed than I was before the session. I actually let her know afterwards and she was oddly unsympathetic and too professional.

Since then I havent been to any psychologist purely because out of my experience I have come to the conclusion (for ME) that seeing a psychologist is a lot of money and a lot of talking and digging into your past (and yes getting some form of insight) – BUT getting you NO WHERE. But I am sure there are psychologists out there who have adopted a more practical approach, and I also have a lot of time for experienced life coaches.

I really want to help people in the future who struggle with similar issues like I do, especially new moms – I really want to help people overcome and live a better quality life. I want to empower women of all ages as well as teenage girls and give them hope at a point where they might feel hopeless. I want to help them to start believing the TRUTH about themselves and reject the lies that they have been believing about their identity.

I am trusting God to show me how and when I can start helping others on this journey of mental health. I have decided to not push it and to rather just open myself up to opportunities and open doors and trust that things will fall into place in time. Perhaps do some further studying, although I doubt that the formal route of Psychology is the answer for me…

For now, I am still learing every day. I get up every morning and realise it is something I have to manage actively (more so on some days than others).

For me what works currently is a combination of watching what I eat (more on this in my next blog), exercising, trying to do things that I like (aka “self-care”) and most of all watching what I am thinking about.

What is very important to me is to try to walk closely with God every moment of every day. To incorporate prayer into my daily life. To ask Him for guidance, grace, favour and strength for every moment. To help me to live mindfully in the moment, to be grateful, to love, have mercy and grace for myself and others, to forgive easily…

Chat soon, love Helene xxx

My make-up must haves for a busy mom

I am not too crazy about going out without some form of make up on.

Let me rephrase… I don’t think I will ever go out to a mall or restaurant or social get together at this stage of my life, if I havent applied some make up.

However, when we travelled through Thailand and the humidity would have melted anything off my face, that was enough reason to go bare-faced the entire 2 weeks that we were there. And it was kind of liberating…

A good powder brush should be an essential in your make up kit.

As a new mommy I have about 10 minutes every morning to apply my skin care and make-up.

I have found a few items that work like a charm for me – it applies easily and quickly and doesn’t cost an arm and a leg.

Skin care for me is the most important step and I don’t skip on my evening and morning product applications… I will write about this in my next blog.

Now let’s get to my quick “mom proof” make up routine – I manage to do this almost every morning.

I know everyone is different, but it does me the world of good if I look in a mirror and I am happy with what I see – I feel better about the 3 hours of sleep that I had the previous night or the fact that I might be feeling a bit low. I know it might sound superficial, but something as small as a bit of make up helps me to get up, dress up and face the day!

  1. Heliocare Color (Gelcream Light) SPF50 – Retails for about R400
    20180506_114612.jpg
    Heliocare Gelcream Light SPF50 – mine is almost empty!!

I discovered a great sunscreen and tint in one. This amazing broad spectrum sunscreen SPF50 has a tint which just looks so fresh and natural while giving me the coverage that I still want. The product range (Heliocare) is from Spain and can be found in most dermatologists offices and aesthetic skin care clinics (or get in touch with me). It also contains an amazing antioxidant called Fernblock to give you that extra protection during the day.. A MUST HAVE item for any mommy on the run!

2. Catrice translucent powder – Retails for about R70

Catrice powder

My next make up must have is a good translucent powder to set my tinted sunblock and eliminate any shine. I have tried a couple of different ones from the range Catrice (Dischem) and I am happy with all of them and the price is really affordable too! Just apply with a large powder brush.

3. Mac blusher (Colour: Warm Soul/Blush Baby/Melba) – Retails for about R300

Mac blusher

Next up is the all important blusher. I love Mac’s blushers. A little bit more expensive but it lasts me 6 months to a year and I use it every day! Apply with a blusher brush in a circular motion on the cheekbones.

4. Mac Brow Set (Colour: Bold Brunette) – Retails for about R280

My last two steps are focused on the eye area. I swear by a product called brow set by Mac. This is a subtle color and set for your brows in one. If your eye brows look groomed and defined your look is 80% done.

5. Catrice Mascara – Retails for about R79

Lastly I apply two coats of good old mascara in black. I have recently discovered an amazing affordable mascara from Catrice, love it!

Catrice Mascara

And there you go…done in less than 10 minutes!

Love Helene xxx

I love this blusher brush from Mac!

Eating healthy – why is it SO hard..?

Part 1: Why is it so hard?

I’ve decided to write about my struggle to consistently eat more healthy for two reasons.

Firstly, I believe there’s a reason the diet industry is a multi-billion dollar industry (most people struggle with this in some degree)…and secondly I am hoping that writing about this issue will help me to be more successful in my efforts…

8f5afc903307597539041a82793408b8

 

At the beginning of 2018 I very sincerely decided that this was the year that I was finally going to leave my nonsense in the past and be dedicated to a healthier diet once and for all.

I am turning 40 this year, and my thought pattern went something like this: If I can’t get it right now, I might as well give up/not try again.

I also became aware of the depressing fact that the past 20 years has been an on and off struggle with wanting to lose that LAST 5 – 10 kg’s by buying a new diet book/joining a diet club/increasing my gym efforts/becoming qualified as a nutritionist and personal trainer (yes I went that far) etc…

I love that saying which says that if you keep on doing the same thing and not getting the results you want, it is insanity… Well keeping on doing what I’ve been doing for the past 20 years when it comes to my eternal quest for health/weight loss/having a better body and health…. will just be insanity.

220d827ffa01dd366d463689272bf4f3--insanity-quotes-quotes-from-albert-einstein

So why of why is it so HARD?? Is human will power so weak? Why do some people get it right and others don’t..? I don’t have the perfect answer for this.

I think one of the things that is crucial for success is that it should matter ENOUGH to you to want to change.

You have to find that thing, that trigger deep down inside that you can pull out the moment you feel you deserve/need that pizza/doughnut/cake/chocolate etc. RIGHT now. At that moment, that thing (that reason for you to want it enough) should pull you through that moment.

20170105_103509

My baby boy is 18 months and for the past 18 months I have been riding the wave of excuses of I am a new mom, I am tired, I don’t have time, I am emotional, I am stressed, I feel alone… Well, my time for those excuses has expired. I realise that it is only ME that is holding myself back from feeling better about myself and my body.

I strongly believe that you have to be kind to yourself and love yourself first and foremost. So I am glad that I gave myself enough time to adjust to motherhood. But you have to get to a point where  you realise that making better choices concerning your eating habits – is LOVING yourself!

I have also realised that I have a pattern that is not working for me. I get very motivated by reading a new diet book and then ride that emotional wave of feeling super dedicated and converted for a while… And then the emotional excuses set in. And before I know it, I am back to my old habits. Other times I sincerely just don’t care enough.

So what is going to be different now… What is it going to take for me to make that permanent change…???

a76e537d55bb0cddb315f1bdd9b72daa

 

For me… right now, I think it is to just start. To just take the next step tomorrow and then the day after that and the day after that. No emotional rollercoaster, just an almost unemotional, logical decision day-to-day.

And I have decided to blog about my journey – to somehow keep me accountable…

Let’s see…

Love Helene xxx

Oog rome

Ek is onlangs gevra om bietjie te skryf oor oog rome.  So baie van ons is bekommerd oor veroudering veral rondom probleem areas soos die oog area.  

Die lyntjies wat jy sien om die oe is meestal wat ons noem “expression lines” as gevolg van al die  beweging om die oe met elke gesigsuitdrukking wat ons het!  As jy lekker baie lag dan het jy dalk meer – wat mos ‘n goeie ding is! 😉

Van die lyntjies kan ook wees as gevolg van gewone veroudering – wat met ons almal gebeur.  Sommige velle – veral ‘n droer vel – wys lyntjies vinniger as byvoorbeeld ‘n olierige vel.  As jou vel baie “dehydrated” is sal die lyntjies ook meer sigbaar wees.  Dit is een van die redes hoekom ‘n goeie vogroom oggend en aand so belangrik is!

Die hoeveelheid lyntjies wat jy het hang af van hoofsaaklik 3 dinge:  Jou ouderdom, jou hoeveelheid “expressions” om die oog area en dan jou vel tipe (hoe droer hoe meer sigbaar sal die lyntjies wees).

Wanneer moet ek begin om ‘n oogroom te gebruik?

Ek stel voor jy begin sodra jy begin belangstel in ‘n meer ernstige velsorg roetine.  Vir party van ons is dit middel 20’s en vir ander van ons eers so rondom 30.  Begin maar net wanneer jy kan!  Prevention is better than cure!

Watter tipe oogroom?

Mens kry oog gels – dit is meer vir hidrasie en om dinge soos “puffiness” en oppervlakkige baie fyn lyntjies na te kyk.  Dit is nie regtig “anti-ageing” nie.

Jy sal vir jou ‘n behoorlike oog room moet aan skaf wat bedoel is om “anti-ageing” te wees.  Hoe weet ek dis anti-ageing?  Kyk na watter aktiewe bestandele daarin is en die konsentrasie van die aktiewe bestandele.

Watter bestandele is goed om in ‘n “anti-ageing” oogroom te he?

  1. “Anti-oxidants”:  Dit is byvoorbeeld Vitamin C, Vitamin E en ‘n hele klomp ander.  Antioksidante help veroudering deur “free radicals” te neutraliseer – hulle onskadelik te maak.  “Free radicals” word gevorm in die vel as gevolg van ‘n hele klomp faktore soos die son, besoedling, inflammasie ens.  “Free radicals” takel die goeie selle en goed soos collagen af in die vel en veroorsaak so veroudering.
  2. “Peptides”:  Dit is bestandele wat spesifiek gemaak word om byvoorbeeld collagen te stimuleer.
  3. “Growth Factors”:  Hierdie bestandele help tipies om collagen en elastin te stimuleer en ook “cellular renewal” in die vel te stimuleer.
  4. “Retinol”:  Dit is ‘n wonderlike “anti-ageing” bestandeel, wees net bewus dat dit net in die aand aangesit kan word, stadig begin moet word en dat die vel moontlik initieel kan reageer (rooi, droog ens.)
  5. “AHA’s” (alpha hydroxy acids):  Dit is byvoorbeeld glycolic acid wat sel vernuwing kan veroorsaak en sodoende veroudering teen veg.

So my voorstel sal wees… afhangende van jou budget… as jy dit kan bekostig, koop vir jou ‘n goeie oogroom van ‘n professionele velsorg reeks wat jy by ‘n salon of dokter koop.  Of kyk na ‘n goeie “department store/pharmacy” reeks en kyk bietjie watter aktiewe bestandele in hulle “anti-ageing” oog room is.

Dit is baie moeilik vir my om ‘n oog room uit te sonder… Al jou goeie velsorg reekse behoort ‘n goeie oogroom vir jou te bied.  Kyk maar net na die bestandele en gaan kyk bietjie na reviews op die internet… dit behoort jou baie te help met jou besluit!  Of jy kan natuurlik vir my vra om te help as jy ‘n spesifieke oor room ingedagte het 🙂

Helene x x x

Grace for you, mommy.

And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.  2 Corinthians 12:9

I want to know whether there are any other moms who feel the way I do…

Do you feel lonely on some days?

Do you wonder on some days who you are and what your purpose is other than being a mommy and wife?

Do you sometimes find it hard to deal with your new identity or role as mommy?

580b585b2edbce24c47b261c

Do you sometimes have conflicting emotions about your life before marriage or motherhood, your new life as a mom and the dreams and personal aspirations that you still have for the future?

Do you sometimes struggle with guilt or shame due to these emotions?

Do you sometimes compare yourself to other moms who seem to have it just that little (or a lot) more “together” than you do or just make it all look so easy?

Have you ever at some point during your day felt that you are so physically and emotionally drained that you are not sure how you are going to get through the day?

Have you ever looked at yourself post baby and post many sleepless nights and wonder how and when you’re going to get back into shape?

Have you ever felt guilty about spending too much time on Facebook/drinking too much coffee/eating too much sugar…and realising these are all just escapes and ways of coping…?

Have you at some point felt overwhelmed about this huge task called raising a precious little being? And utter confusion about feeding, getting to sleep at night and naps and dealing with teething, growth spurts, leaps, illnesses…?

I sometimes wonder if it would have been easier to live on a farm a 100 years ago with no one but your mom/sister to give you advice…compared to dr google, blogs, books, social media, friends…and yes even TOTAL STRANGERS to give tips and advice on what worked for them….take note….it worked for THEM….although they make it sound as THE only way…

5a01f73818e87004f1ca434a

And then you have an equal amount or even more times that you realise how in love and in awe you are of your little one.

Everything about him…his smell, his feet and hands and little perfect body and soft hair, his lips and eyes and nose.

Every new little baby babble word…when it sounds like he wants to sing…the way he brings me his book to read while he sits in my lap…the way it feels when he finally falls asleep in my arms…his laugh…and how I’ll do anything a 100 times over to hear his laugh… I marvel at him.

My mind and heart can not COMPREHEND how much I care, love and feel for him. I feel blessed and overwhelmed at the same time. I have to remind myself sometimes that millions of moms before me have done this thing called raising a child…and that all will be well.

images-3

 

I waited for my big blessing for about two years after two devastating miscarriages. I always knew I wanted to be a mom. I looked forward to and imagined my days being filled by spending it with my new baby and feeling fulfilled and happy in a way I have never known…   But I have thought and felt every single emotion that I listed at the start… It is as though my son has put spotlights on certain areas in my character that God is seriously dealing with right now… Here are some things I feel that HE has laid on my heart recently…this has helped me and I hope it can mean something to you too…

1. Although I believe in being open and honest about your struggles, especially with those closest to you, I have learnt something valuable in time.  And that is the power of not over sharing your struggles with too many people.  It is just a fact that the more we talk about something – the more we give it attention, time and sharing with others – the more POWER we give to it.  It’s as if God has laid it upon my heart to rather come and share with HIM, and pour out my heart and my tears during my time with HIM.  He asks us to be JOYFUL and show this JOY to the world.  Not to be fake, no – but to let HIS JOY become more and more on the inside so that it overflows to the outside.  We can only love and bless others (and our family) from a place of fullness, from a place of CHRIST within us.  And CHRIST within us is cultivated and becomes more and more as a result of spending time with HIM and being in an intimate relationship with HIM – being in HIS presence daily.

2.  What has carried me through most days – is to remind myself every single morning that it is a new day and that God’s forgiveness is enough to cover all my mistakes and His GRACE is enough for me for the day.  If I am having a day when I feel overcome by any of the above negative emotions and thoughts, I remind myself of this fact.  That HE WILL carry me through this day and that tomorrow will be a new day with new GRACE sufficient for that day.

3.  God has laid it upon my heart that now is a “smaller” time for me.  Small in the sense that my life revolves around Lucas and our home.  I have been fighting this. It is as though He wants me to be quiet and trust HIM in what He is doing during this time and that in due time HE will broaden my horizens again.  And that what I do with this time, my time with HIM, my personal growth – will all equip me when the time is ready.   God wants me to be quiet and trust HIM:

For the Lord God, the Holy One of Israel has said this: “In returning [to Me] and rest you shall be saved, In quietness and confident trust is your strength.”

Isaiah 30:15

Love,

Helene xxx