We in Ireland are in a strange system of living at the moment. Our society, for the most part, is secular, and has been becoming more so this way in the last 20 years than ever before. Our media has been filled with tales of horrific abuses within church-led organisations, regressive attitudes towards things like reproductive rights and same sex marriage, and somewhat of a wall being put up against changing to fit in further with our new century views within the way it has always been. Ireland is known through the world as being a Catholic country, a religious state, despite the fact that our percentage of Roman Catholic citizens has been dropping (a drop of 3% to 84% of population in last census, 2011) and attendance at churches is hitting all time low levels. There is, for the most part, a great deal of separation between Church and State – the two major ties remaining being the health system (in particular reproductive rights issues) and our education system. Read More
I donâ€™t know whether this is the same for everyone or not, but during my pregnancy, it was preached at me from my 12 week appointment how important it would be to breastfeed. The midwives were encouraging and full of information, and leaflets outlined the various benefits that breastmilk would give to the newborn babies. That said, I never found them to be overly pushy or preachy, they did leave it up to the individual, but it was not left as something vague just how much breastfeeding was expected of each mother to give the best start to their child in life.
When my child was five months old, I gave in to common sense and made a visit to my GP where I was diagnosed with postnatal depression, prescribed medication and referred to a consultant psychiatrist for further care. This was not my first foray into the world of mental health issues, but this to me was progress; I was on top of my game and making sure that whatever was going wrong in my head was to be remedied so that I could focus on making life as good as it could be for me and my new little family. Almost a year on, things are better, mostly. They are being reviewed constantly by professionals who know what they’re talking about and I consider myself more educated about different mental health issues and the effects that they have, my triggers and effects of the medication on different parts of my life.
It has been hard work, but I am getting there. Read More
As I’ve documented a few times on this blog, I am a c-section Mama, my bubs was evacuated via the sunroof, no natural birth here. It wasn’t something I had planned (not that the Irish system allows first time mothers to do that anyway, in my experience), but having not planned for anything I feel that it was definitely an experience less traumatic and mentally punishing than that of women who had hoped and wished for a natural vaginal birth. It’s something I’m happy to talk about; as I see it, my birth experience was no different to that of anyone else. It’s got the drama (monitors beeping madly), the long waiting (24 hours for a bloody gel to start working), a hazy blur of things going on (everything from the lovely gas and air stage) and the ending, where a rather tiny orange little person emerged from where he’d been growing inside me and became my son, the boy prince who could have guest starred on Geordie Shore, such was his lovely orange jaundice. Read More
I am mother to an eleven month old. And I am not a bad Mammy. But it seems that I spend my days berating myself and telling myself that I am. This I know and I do it anyway. I’m not the only one.
Yesterday, I was able to walk into a book shop and buy a magazine and open it to find my words, my name and my photo written on the glossy pages inside. To say I’m excited is an understatement – the fact that someone else found my writing worth publishing, and not just relegated to stuff I put up myself on the internet is something which amazes me and has done since my initial emails with the editor. Read More
Since returning to work in October, Iâ€™ve found myself applying for a few things within my company to expand my experience, or add a layer of flexibility to my schedule. If I manage it, I can spend more of my childâ€™s awake time with him and less of it staring at a screen feeling like I should be at home, singing along to the various singing plastic objects to make him smile. In order to do so, there have been many re-writes of CVâ€™s which make me sound like the most boring person in the world, and also the cover letters where I attempt to pitch myself as being the perfect choice for whatever they want me to be. On second thought, Iâ€™ve realised my CV, and therefore the accompanying cover letter doesnâ€™t do me justice. My new life as a working mama, and my recent parenting experiences have clearly made me invaluable. Thus, Iâ€™m contemplating a change in tone to my applications after thisâ€¦