Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Why do Turkish "Teyzes" have the urge to feed you???

On Sunday we celebrated Ela's birthday with Alper's family...
Here's the dialogue that took place between me and his aunt at lunchtime:

Alper's Aunt (AA): Take some 'borek' honey...

Me: Thank you so much but I actually don't like borek very much.

AA: Ahhh, but I made it specially for you and Alper, you have to try..

Me: That's so nice of you but I'd rather not eat, thank you...

AA: Please take just a little piece!

Me: No, thank you.

AA: (cutting a small piece and trying to stuff it into my mouth)..you know one should it just to make the other person happy (I couldn't actually translate this part properly because it's a typical Turkish saying which probably can't be translated into any other language: Hatirim icin Ye!...)

Me: Please, don't insist...I really don't wanna eat...(whereas deep inside I said s.th. like STOP IT!!! I HATE YOUR BOREK!!! WHY DON'T YOU GET IT OLD LADY????????)

Another very annoying thing is that they keep telling you you will catch a cold or get stomach ache because you walk barefoot. It's sooooo tiring to explain that this is nonsense!!!

This is AA with Ela:

What a challenging day!

Today I had the most difficult day with Ela since she was born...esp. after her morning nap, which probably wasn't long enough, she managed to give me a headache (very unusual for me) with her fussy, cranky, touchy, God-who-knows-what-like behavior. Is it because she's a toddler now??? So soon??? At the moment she's sleeping again..that is she's trying to sleep, woke up several times crying as if she was in pain or something.
My limits of patience were truly pushed and it was really hard to "be cautious in my demeanor, and take extra efforts to maintain the integrity of my auric field" like Metatron recommends in his latest channeling.
The lunar eclipse on Saturday was very powerful and incl. me many people felt it very intensively. Now we're approaching a solar eclipse on 11th July and the 5 Planet Alignment (The Grand Cross) which hasn't happened for a very long time. These astrological occurrences are giving us a hard time and whatever it is that we have to 'clean, release, forgive, face, heal, let go' in our lives, this is the right time to do that.
I have to think about today and find out what it is that I need to learn or understand from Ela's behavior and its effects on me. I found it hard to stay calm so it must be a big one! Maybe related to my childhood...I don't know.
I've been thinking about my father lately...for a very long time he was my big love and I adored him sooo much until I was old enough to realize that he's just a human being like all of us and actually has many...many...many not so nice qualities. In 2006 right before I got married we had a huge fight which changed our relationship forever...something broke between us...I guess I finally cut the cord.
And since then it was hard for me to feel the fatherly love in my life...we were distant from each other, mutually unreachable.
Until the day I saw him with Ela. This little girl has managed to bring love and light back to my dad's life.Now he is like I remember him from my childhood; gentle, loving, caring, attentive, patient, warm, supportive...
Maybe not directly towards me but that doesn't matter...seeing him like this is making me happy. Because he found happiness again in his life. Something worth living for rather than being buried in dramas and diseases and complaints.
Right now I have the feeling that today has s.th. to do with my mom and how she reacted to me as a toddler...probably still some forgiving and letting go to be done.

Wishing everybody gentle and tension-free days...

Monday, June 28, 2010

One-Year-Old Ela

What's new with little Ela?

- She started to (try to) repeat words like bye-bye and Alper (Aabeer)
- She's more and more interested in her dad...showing him special attention and being very happy to have him around
- She's not walking yet, I ordered this to motivate her..hope she likes it :)
- We went to the pool and the sea for the first time...she felt more comfortable in the pool but the sea was actually very wavy and she was scared by the noise. This week we will start going to Ceshme where the sea is quite calm so I hope she'll enjoy it since I would prefer not to use the pool at all. The place we're staying is a big complex with lots of people and I also don't know if the pool is cleaned well enough.
- Breastfeeding only in the mornings after wake-up and before bedtime
- Started to give milk at breakfast with cereals. No allergy detected so far
- Stopped preparing special meals for her...she's eating everything now. Favorites are meatballs, fishfingers, green lentils, fruits like bananas, cherries, pears, apples and her absolute favorite is breakfast cereals
- Tasted ice cream for the first time (McDonald's creamy ice cream) and lovvveddd it!
- She tries to sing saying 'mmmmm' with songs she likes :))))

Friday, June 25, 2010

How to deal with tomorrow's powerful eclipse...

Today was already a very tense day...like a messenger of tomorrow's major full moon lunar eclipse in Capricorn.
It's easier to deal with tension when aware of the causes so here's some insight from Susan Miller.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Ela turned one!

I can't believe it's been one year since Ela was born...I don't even know what to write..I'm not ready yet I guess :o
It's a strange feeling to see how immensely fast they're growing and changing.
I love you very much my precious little baby and every day I'm more grateful to have you in my life. You give meaning to every moment and make me feel complete and perfect. You are also perfect and I will always aim for your happiness. Seeing you smile is worth every challenge and struggle...seeing you happy is worth every sleepless second and stressful moment.
May love and peace always be with you. Thanks for being my daughter. Happy Birthday Ela!

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Day of firsts..

1) First Ice Cream
2) First "Kofte" (meatballs) in a restaurant (used to pepare special ones for her w/o salt)
3) First time out for dinner with Ela
4) First time Ela said "bye bye" while waving her hand at the same time

Saturday, June 19, 2010

My Travel Wishlist

I used to like traveling a lot before I actually had to travel like crazy for work...it was in fact one of the (less important) reasons why I wanted to quit so badly. I didn't want to see airports, passport checks and hotels for a very long time. I guess when you HAVE to travel it's getting less interesting and no matter what the destination is it's just a terrible burden which separates you from your loved ones and makes you miss special days and many nice events.

But I'm kind of ready to travel again. And since I have a cute travel buddy now (Alper hates traveling, esp. flying makes him sick and his interest in exploring new places is not too big) I started to dream about certain spots we could visit in the next few years. I want to wait till Ela is slightly older (2-2.5) so that flying and traveling gets a bit easier.

Here's my wishlist;

1) Christmas 2011 Germany (Frankfurt)

2) Fall 2012 USA (New York)

3) Christmas 2012 Germany and maybe France (Strasbourg)

4) Fall 2013 Italy

5) Christmas 2013 Germany

6) Fall 2014 UK (London)

7) Christmas 2014 Germany

and of course every 2-3 months: ISTANBUL

Friday, June 18, 2010

EC Update

It's been one week since we started with EC. So far Ela is not doing bad at all...at least she cries now when wetting or pooping in her training pants..and most of the time when I put her on the potty she pees so I assume she started to make a connection though I can't be sure since she doesn't show any other specific signs of being aware of what she's doing.
I must say that it's less stressful than I had expected...maybe because I had prepared myself quite well in advance, psychologically I mean. And I prefer to put on training pants or underwear since I can't always see esp. when she pees and then she ends up being wet all over.
When she's naked though she just acts like she has a nappy on and doesn't mind any kind of pee or poop coming out :))

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Do nannies have the right to be less professional?

For the last few days a big discussion is going on in the world of Turkish moms...Sibel Arna, a fashion writer of a daily newspaper and also mom of a 9-month-old boy wrote an article about her boat cruise vacation with her son and their nanny and it was basically about how the nanny screwed up mainly because she probably also got into vacation mode and eg. mixed up the soup she was supposed to prepare and constantly mentioned that she would also like to swim in the sea and would love to have her family around, too...and at the end of the article Arna also gives another example of her friend's nanny who dissapeared for one hour during a resort vacation to take belly-dancing lessons(!).
Now the main problem I think was the tone of the article which was unnecessarily aggressive and rude. But I'm not sure if I agree with most of the moms who bombarded her with criticism and judged her to be mean and degrading. I think trying to turn this into a snobbish/rich/cruel/mean woman against poor/hard-working/over-sensitive/working-class girl is a bit exaggerated.
This reminded me of a similar incident that happened when I was working for Pearson...some colleagues dissapeared for a few hours during a big conference to do some shopping or sightseeing or something I can't remember now and maybe they were not fired because of that but they certainly got into big trouble. And I really don't think you can actually take belly-dancing lessons during working hours no matter what your profession is. Maybe if you're the CEO of the company. Maybe then.
In fact, I believe that being a nanny requires even more professionalism than any other job because here we're talking about a baby or a little child. It's just hard I guess because their working environment is the private place of a family, a less 'serious' environment that is...and from what I can see nannies and also cleaning ladies in Turkey after a while tend to think they're part of the family or a friend and start to behave accordingly and that's causing the problem.
Maybe the problem is that here you actually don't have to be rich to have a helper or nanny...in fact, many women spend a big amount of their salaries on nannies and helpers since they can't risk it to lose track or they simply want to work and don't want to have to think about what to do when their children get older. But I guess this makes it easier for the nannies to identify themselves with their 'bosses.' They are not that different after all...many also struggling and trying to 'just do fine'. I'm sure richer people have less problems with their workers since the gap is big enough to prevent such an identification.
Anyways, this is all far from being a problem for me since I don't have a nanny and also no frequent cleaning lady (because I can do most of the work myself and also because I just can't stand it to have somebody around in the apartment!).

Monday, June 14, 2010

Tolerance & Patience

Before Ela I would have considered myself a relatively tolerant and patient person but there were some situations I felt less tolerant and patient to be honest like being around people I don't have anything in common and can't find anything to talk about (eg. in-laws, most of my relatives, most of Alper's relatives). And I certainly pushed my limits of tolerance and patience when my in-laws moved from Ist. to Izmir and stayed with us for over a year. Nothing against them, I can't even share the same place with my own parents anymore...sometimes I wonder how I spent 21 years with them in the same apartment...and then I remember how frustrated I was because of that.
Anyways, this was before Ela.
Now everything's different...not that motherhood automatically brings some angelic features or something...but what makes the difference is that now I have something in common with them...and that something is Ela.
I still don't have to lead any direct conversations with them but because they are only focused on her I don't have to talk anyway. And I feel that I'm not disturbed anymore by their louder talking..or their interesting interests...or their totally different approach to life in general.
I feel lighter now. Less vulnerable. More tolerant and patient.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Part-Time EC: Finally decided to give it a try!

Today before bath time we officially started with the diaperfreebaby/part-time elimination communication (EC) approach.


I removed the carpet in Ela's room and we started to practice naked on the first day. I will also try the training pants sometimes.
My primary goal is to teach Ela awareness about her bowel movements since she hasn't cried even once after having pooped since she's born. These new nappies are so good (!) that babies really don't feel any pee or poop for a very long time. I will never push her to "learn" to use the toilet or potty and in the beginning I will only do it one hour in the mornings and one hour in the evenings when she usually does her poop. I know there're many views against this early intro of "potty education" but when I read the book I really liked the idea and had the feeling that this might be the right aproach for us (both).
I'm very relaxed and don't have any certain date in mind when I would like Ela to 'graduate' from this education. If she raises her awareness and starts to tell me before she does s.th. it would be nice to properly train her next summer (it's so much easier in summer) since I want to start traveling with her when she's 2.5 and it would be very practical if she's already potty trained.
This whole training thing is gonna teach me s.th., too, of course...
I will learn to be more flexible (dealing with cleaning pee and poop :)))
I will learn to be patient (I was never patient with myself when learning s.th.)
I will learn to be a better observer (looking for specific signs)

First day result:
1 poop and pee being caught
1 poop and pee being missed

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

What's up..

After a bad heat wave in Istanbul and also for a few days in Izmir after we came back I've been enjoying the cloudy and slightly chilly weather this week! Unfortunately, the heat is coming back this weekend :(
Here're some pix from last Sun when we visited my brother-in-law and his family in their new summer house in Ceshme. Ela had such a great time...she really loves to be around smaller kids.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Back in Izmir

After a week of joy, excitement, busy moments, clinginess, love, socializing, exhaustion, heat, beautiful places and lots of patience we're back in Izmir now. Ela missed her dad sooo much she didn't want to get off of him :)) ...which was good for me since her sticky behavior in Istanbul really began to be very tiring.

My mom and dad found it really hard to say good-bye (to her :))