One of my favorite books about toddlers is "The Happiest Toddler on the Block" by Harvey Karp (thx Eva :p) and I would so love to watch him live...he's going to give a speech at a conference in Istanbul on 21st July but since I'll be in Marmaris I'm gonna miss that I'm afraid :(( But here' re the details for those who are interested and can/want to attend:
It seems so right to defend yourself and try to make your point when you think you're a hundred percent 'right'. You wonder how the other person just can't see the 'truth' and insists on his own (obviously wrong) view. But who decides what's 'right'. And what exactly is 'wrong'? I always had a problem with concepts like right/wrong, normal/abnormal, correct/incorrect, and my absolute favorite appropriate/inappropriate... Who the hell decides what is what??? I might be so wrong, abnormal, incorrect and inappropriate and still think I'm right, normal, correct and appropriate. When put like that, arguing about s.th. doesn't really make sense, does it? One of the turning points in my life concerning this matter, that is having arguments or even fights esp. with family or partner, was when my dear Eva told me about Byron Katie's 'The Work' a few years ago. And the other day another dear friend Isla reminded me of it at a very 'right' time in fact since the last few weeks probably due to the many eclipses and this Grand Cross Alignment thing had been a bit tense and tough. Apparently because we were tested if we were able to keep our calm and stay centered even in stressful situations and also because we had to get rid of the last remains of past issues and attachments. Byron Katie taught me that when somebody makes me mad it's me who decides to get mad in the first place. Nobody has to act according to my desires and therefore if I don't like something about someone it's my problem, not the other person's. And when I applied the The Work Process and asked the 4 questions I usually realized that I was angry at myself most of the time and just reflected this anger in other people who happened to be kind of available and relevant at that time. I also felt so light and relieved when I decided to let that negative feeling go without having to make my point, prove that I'm so right and have an argument or fight. Today I had the chance again to apply it when I was about to get mad at Alper because in my opinion he didn't appreciate my efforts to manage to do everything on my own at home while at the same time raising a baby and didn't thank me for various (quite little) things but just took them for granted and kind of expected everything to be perfect. I esp. focused on the thought 'you don't thank me for the things I do for you' and soon realized that this kind of expectation was actually not reasonable since I had been the one who had decided to deal with everything on my own and never or very very rarely had asked for help or support. In fact, this 'not-asking-for-help but nevertheless-why-don't-you-help-or-at-least-appreciate kind of thought is exactly how my mother used to think and I so hated that! I've been realizing lately that some negative features of my mom that I truly disliked when I was a child are somehow making their way into my mind and I find myself talking or behaving like her. I've been working on this since I know that that's not me...I guess this happened because I needed to show understanding for her and relate to how she used to feel back then. During this process I also had the chance to work on being less judgemental. Thank you Byron Katie.
Tomorrow is time for Cesme again...and on Monday we will finally head off to Marmaris. I'm prepared for both trips and look forward to our first real holiday with Ela.
I'm officially not Ela's Nr.1 anymore...she points to the door every evening before Alper's usual arrival time and when he comes she almost flies into his arms and giggles and just wants to play with him till bedtime. It feels strange of course to kind of lose my throne but it's also very heart warming and sweet :))
I still remember how the love I had for my dad as a little girl made me feel special, secure, happy and precious. I can see that Ela will love Alper in a very similar way. Yesterday I asked Alper what kind of dad he'd like to be..not that I was expecting any answer :p but I wanted him to think about it..how does he want her to see him? Are there any features he'd like to change? Despite my big love for my daddy I always found him very judgemental, narrow-minded and actually a bit boring. I asked Alper if he thought he had any negative features he'd like to get rid of before Ela was mature enough to understand and see...I tried to be as objective as possible and didn't give any examples (ok...maybe I did..just one or two :)) I'm sure this will occupy his brain a lot for the next few days/weeks/years. Firstly, because I know he wants to be a good dad...actually...he wants to be a perfect dad. Secondly, because he's relatively concerned about what others (that is people he likes/loves) think of him in general :))
This weekend was much better than last week's..far less tiring and more relaxed. Sat we went to Ramo's again and although it was quite windy, we (that is Ela) had a great time. Sun I grabbed Ela and met Elif, Angelo and Guiseppe in Alacati which was also lovely. Now we're counting down to our vacation in Marmaris! My favorite aunt is coming on Sat from Frankfurt and on Monday we'll be heading towards Club Magic Life Marmaris..yippie yippie yeay yeay :D Apart from having a nice time and relaxing I'm also looking forward to missing Alper in fact. I must admit that although the constant traveling was a big burden while working being frequently apart was quite nice relationwise. I guess it helps to keep it more alive...
Lastly, I just finished a book - some chick lit novel since I needed s.th. light after all the serious baby care /parenting books I've been reading lately - Sophie Kinsella's Twenties' Girl...a bit of a disappointment compared to her Shopaholic series which in my opinion is THE best chick lit series ever :)) (I'm so waiting for the soon-to-be-published Mini Shopaholic!) Now I want to start reading 'The Help' by Kathreyn Stockett...a book I borrowed from my dear Nath...about African American maids working in white households in Mississippi in the 60s. (NYT Bestseller) Very soon there will also be a movie of this book. BTW, I'm also looking forward to the movie of Eat, Pray, Love..another favorite!
Fri: very nice day at Ramo's Beach (strongly recommend this bay with 3 different beach clubs!!! Beautiful sandy beach, amazing sea and good prices...) Sat: fantastic day at Shayna Beach with Alper's friends from Istanbul...the only popular beach club we still like to go Sun: Lunch at new Cesme Marina (second favorite place now after Alacati) and fun at the pool of brother-in-laws summer house
Less nicer things: - Very, very very tiring 4 days in general with Ela, esp. first two days w/o Alper...having to do everything with Ela in my arms (since house isn't childproof) was sooo exhausting - Loud music and DJ talk starting suddenly at midnight as if somebody was giving a party next door...since DJ talking in Greek probably a boat or catamaran coming close to Turkish shore and giving crazy parties... - Carrying so many things back and forth obviously going to be very tiring as well...
Conclusion: Maybe too early to comment but now would say that don't want to rent a house again next year...would prefer to stay in a hotel every Saturday w/o having to worry about meals/tidying up/childproof environment/in-laws(!)
First night in Cesme (totally irrelevant but reminded me of the song First Night In Bangkok :))) good old 80s...) ...currently sitting on terrace of attic floor..Ela fast asleep...no lights...just the stars...almost forgot how dark it actually gets outside...city life is so different...here I can hear the nature...listen to the light waves...
We're lucky, although it 's a very big & crowded complex it's quite calm and silent...I can't hear any voices or any other kind of noise.
It was a tiring day...traveling with a baby requires special skills! It starts with packing efficiently but certainly doesn't end with unpacking :o
Change of routines and unfamiliar surroundings can confuse the child. But I shouldn't complain...Ela dealt with everything - even the slightly cold water at bathtime because mommy was stupid enough to forget to turn the heater on- very well .
Tomorrow will be a beautiful day with our playgroup @ a beach called Ramo's very close to where we stay in Ciftlikkoy.