Shall I be honest?
The last week of 2016 has hit me like a ton of bricks.
Someone I adored with every fibre of my being let me down in the worst way imaginable.
I am a positive human. An optimist. Glass is half full. Look on the bright side. Learn the lesson. Look for the silver lining.
An insanely brave colleague and friend of mine who has been though a shit time linked me to this blog and challenged me to look for 30 things I'm proud of from 2016. Ok it was meant to be 50, but I turn 30 in 2017 so that felt more appropriate.
I urge anyone else who has found 2016 challenging, upsetting or difficult to have a think of your list too.
I get to start 2017 as a fresh chapter. Back where I started the year- just me and my girls. And I'm calling this the year of the She Wolf. You can follow my adventures here.
30 things I'm proud of:
1. My Alba. Fiesty, firey, strong, passionate, clever, confident.
2. My Effie. Friendly, cuddly, kind, caring, happy, hilarious.
3. My family. My fantastically independent sister. My inspirational mother. My resilient father. My compassionate kinda step dad.
4. My female frienships. My Queens. I hope to be the kind of friend who is always there, without question.
5. That I manage to keep a cottage, garden and car running mostly by myself.
6. That I walked away from Natal Hypnotherapy when it was working for me anymore and found Suzy and The Calm Birth School instead.
7. That I've done ok on self care this year. I've exercised, I've spoilt myself, I've looked after myself well.
8. My relationship with my ex husband. Rocky and turbulent at times, he's actually one of my best friends and we've almost got co-parenting down to an art form.
9. Calm Birthing Calm Parenting. The tribe is growing!
10. All my first time mums who've rocked their births this year. (and that I've helped them achieve this.)
11. All my second time mums who've healed previous birth experiences. (and that I've helped them achieve this.)
12. The tattoos I chose to have this year. My crown. My wolf.
13. How well I sat through them and breathed away the discomfort.
14. That I breastfed Effie until March. 2 1/4 years of the good stuff!
15. That I drove me and my girls all the way to Plymouth and back for our camping adventure.
16. That despite being a "dog is for life" kind of girl, I held my hands up and admitted defeat when it got too much. She is happy, safe and so loved now.
17. I drove to Bristol twice for doula training.
18. I've embraced and enjoyed living on my own.
19. I make the best chocolate brownies.
20. I have rediscovered myself. I enjoy dressing up and going to the pub and socialising again, something I thought had died off when I became a mum.
21. That after a 9 year relationship and two babies, I have been able to enjoy sexual relationships with new people and feel comfortable and attractive in my skin.
22. That I had the courage to date again.
23. That I allowed myself to fall in love completely.
24. That I fell in love with someone in a difficult situation, and instead of running scared, I met it head on and embraced it.
25. The fact that my first reaction to my boyfriends new baby being born was excitement.
26. That I allowed him precious family time with his newborn that put me at the bottom of the priority list. But I did so with a loving open heart.
27. That the short time we had together healed so much damage from my marriage. I felt loved, supported, happy and safe. These are the memories I will cherish.
28. I am so proud that I walked away. That when I discovered betrayal, I walked away because I know my worth.
29. That I have a huge loving heart that will never be totally broken or hardened. I have absolute faith that there is someone worthy of the love I have to share.
30. That I am a She Wolf. Loyal, proud, strong, vunerable, soft, loving.