Mean parents exist

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Picture by Robert Gomez Hernandez

I am still shaken by my experience at the playground today. I feel totally flooded and numb by another mother’s anger executed and poured on me (and my son). I still can’t believe anyone honestly thinks and behaves the way this woman did. I have no acceptance, no tolerance and no understanding for what has happened.

Sequoia found a bucket and a shuffle laying in the sand and started to calmly play with it. A few minutes later an approximately 5 years old girl approached him and wanted the toys. Sequoia certainly did not just give her what she wanted. He is 2. The girl left and shortly after her mother approached me, saying: “I want you to give my daughter her toys back.” Knowing that Sequoia will be understandably upset by her demand, I suggested that we wait a few minutes until he is done with his explorations and she can have her toys. The mother looked at me as if I am crazy and aggressively countered:”Not later, now! These are her toys. If your child wants to play with toys, bring your own!” Continue reading

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Fahrvergnügen and me

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Since we are back from Germany, we have been talking about buying a new car. For everyone that knows our present car, an old purplish Saturn, you know why we need a new one :). We decided on a VW Golf Diesel and if possible with manual transmission. I love driving manuals and with all the advantages automatics might have, I still think the Fahrvergnügen is kind of lousy. We talked with car dealers, test drove one car and finally had a very good offer on a brand new Golf. We had scheduled a last appointment to test drive ‘our’ car and then intended to sign the papers. The appointment was on Saturday afternoon. Around noon we got a call from VW Oakland dealership informing us that all sales on diesel cars have been stopped until further notice. How curious!

Now we know that VW fucked up! To update you on the facts: The German car giant has admitted cheating emissions tests in the US! According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), some cars being sold in America had devices in diesel engines that could detect when they were being tested, changing the performance accordingly to improve results. It is unbelievable, but what does that mean to me; being German living in the United States?   Continue reading

Sometimes life is sweet

Sommer in Deutschland

I am surrounded by sweetness and exhaustion. I decided that this blog post will be a little compilation of some precious moments during my time in Germany. I won’t write about being worn out by the quantity of things I thought I had to do; like renovating my apartment, working with asylum seekers, organizing a festival, tutoring English, teaching German, being part of the Freiburg CI festival and all that with a little one year old on the side. This article will be about 5 times sweetness!

Sweet #1
This morning little Sequoia walked (yes, he walks!) to my side of the bed and said his first word:”Hi!” I think this was one of the most heart warming experiences I’ve ever had.

Sweet #2
One evening at the cloudjam, I was sitting in one corner of the room, observing dancing people and holding my son. I saw and felt how everything in the room became alive and present. The dance, the violin and the focus was flowing easeful together. I was quiet, content and at the right place. I was touched by the reason why I organized this little sparkly festival. I understood that my motivation was to bring all my homes together: Münsingen, the town where I grew up, the Rhineland, where I lived for almost 10 years and the Bay Area, the place where I am living now. All 3 homes were united through my 4th home –  the dance. Just writing this gives me goose bumps. All homes were represented by dear friends, old and new and it made me so tremendously happy that my brother was part of it by cooking deliciously for the whole dance crowd!
An article was written about our Jam by the local newspaper! : http://www.swp.de/muensingen/lokales/muensingen/Persoenlicher-Augenblick;art5701,3357339

All pictures courtesy of Norbert Mörchen.

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Continue reading

Being a mother

Elephant_with_Baby_on_Ground_30_8_1024x1024photo: Nick Brandt

Being a mother means being bit in the toes,
Being a mother means dancing for hours and crying for minutes,
Being a mother means being in LOVE,
Being a mother means watching your child climbing in a cardboard box,
Being a mother means watching your baby for hours,
Being a mother means meaning.

Being a mother means being tired, means being tired.

Being a mother means dressing him in pink,
Being a mother means establishing a different relationship to feet,
Being a mother means watching my son fall asleep every day,
Being a mother means scraping off some dried up banana from his chin,
Being a mother means getting caressed in the purest ways,
Being a mother means drumming on the toilet lid.

Being a mother means being tired, means being tired. Continue reading

Wer hätte das gedacht?

Es ist ruhig. Das Baby schläft. Ich bin allein. Trinke deutsches Bier. Und schreibe. Seit langem finde ich Zeit und Geduld einfach nur für mich zu schreiben (und für Euch natürlich, liebe Leser). Was ich aber tun sollte ist schlafen. In meinem Blogpost Sleepless Humor fing die Schlaflosigkeit an und seither hat sich mein Schlafentzug nur vergrößert. Ich habe alles mögliche probiert, damit Sequoia nicht so oft aufwacht, aber bis jetzt funktioniert keine meiner ach so cleveren Strategien. Wenig Schlaf, das bedeutet in meinem Fall, nicht mehr als 2-3 Stunden am Stück, wenn ich Pech habe nicht einmal das. Der Schlafentzug wirkt sich auf meinen Körper so aus, dass meine Raumwahrnehmung langsam verschwindet und sich meine propriozeptive Wahrnehmung bald in Luft auflösen wird. Das ist eine komplett neue Körper/Lebenserfahrung und schaffe ich es nicht in der Welt der temporären Erfahrung zu bleiben, ziemlich frustrierend. Beim Tanzen kann ich fast nichts mehr anderes machen, als mich auf dem Boden rollen, da alles andere mich sofort desorientiert. Ich brauche nur die Augen zu schließen und die Welt dreht sich.  Continue reading

Sleepless humor

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A live experienced story, just before the bells ring for Christmas! Why not adding a little bit of humor in the midst of all the crazyness that seems to happen on our peculiar planet.

Most of you heard the term – sleep d e p r i v a t i o n. Especially known among fresh mothers. Just in case you don’t, it is simply the condition of not having enough sleep. I, finally know what that implies when Sequoia suddenly started to wake up 3-5 times at night. Not funny. But funny things can result from that state.

Last Monday at the SF airport before we flew to Germany, I had to pee. Beside my sleep deprived state of body and mind, I was also sad about leaving without Rajendra. But nevertheless, I needed to pee. Continue reading

Where did we loose it?

My little son Sequoia is already 10 weeks old. In these last weeks, I was thinking a lot what to write about now being a mother. Something that wouldn’t be ‘baby talk’ or ‘mother talk’ or ‘sweet talk’ or ‘ info talk’ or ‘complaining talk’ or ‘advice talk’ or ‘happy talk’. I wanted to write about something else. I am still not really sure what that is as so many people talk and write about motherhood, babyhood and parenthood. A whole big industry is making money by educating us about that totally natural event of having a baby.  Sometimes I feel like being in a quick sand of words not knowing when I will get pulled down, swallowed by the word monster. Continue reading

Eindrücke – Ein Brief an die Welt

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Hallo Welt!

Ich bekam vor ein paar Tagen mein erstes Paket! Es war eine Überraschung und es wurde doch tatsächlich in meinem Namen geliefert. Wie schnell sich die Nachricht meiner Geburt doch herum gesprochen hat! Wie man in den Bildern gut erkennen kann, war ich von den Handtüchern nicht sehr beeindruckt, auch nicht von der kreativen Fotomontage meines Vaters, aber ich hatte das Gefühl meine Eltern hatten Spaß an der Fotosession. Erwachsene erfreuen sich ja bekanntlich sonderbarer Dinge, aber ich glaube, ich werde die Handtücher mit der Zeit mögen, vielleicht auch nur der Stickerei wegen.
Ich selbst war während der Bildaufnahmen mit wichtigeren Dingen beschäftigt. Ich muss mich in den nächsten Wochen und Monaten sehr auf meinen Körper konzentrieren. Es gibt ja so viel zu lernen! Einem Phänomen bin ich besonders oft ausgeliefert; dem Schluckauf oder dem Hiccup. Beide Worte klingen lustigerweise in beiden Sprachen ziemlich ähnlich. Er erwischt mich immer völlig unvorbereitet und manchmal machen mir die Schluckauf-Reaktionen meines Körpers ein bisschen Angst. Aber nur ein wenig, denn ich bin fast immer ziemlich entspannt und nehme sie wie sie kommen. Continue reading

Toys are babies

Ok people, let’s get it out there for everyone publicly. I am pregnant and I am feeling super relaxed, already for more than 7 months. A few days ago I had to have my first trip to “Toys are Babies” and I am sure you know the official name of that incredible store. It was a terrible, surprising, irritating, flabbergasting and funny experience. Besides, definitely a lesson about what NOT to buy.

I give you some examples: Here we have a row of ridiculous little machines for babies. I think they call them ‘jumpers’. All have different sound effects, various vibrating possibilities, mirrors, flying suns, moons and monsters, installed robot children songs and probably some of them even some light variations. I don’t remember. These things are terrifying, not even to mention the ugly plastic aesthetics and these bullying colors. One of them is called: Evenflo ExerSaucer Jump and Learn Jumper Jungle Quest Activity Center!
Do I have to say more?

Exersaucer

Exersaucer

No we continue to a diaper rocket, that “locks the odor”! It is antimicrobial, has a double clamp air-lock, a 5 layer refill bag and a convenient foot pedal. When I saw it, I thought it looksvlike a rocket that actually can shoot all the detested little diapers out into the universe.

Diaper rocket

Diaper rocket

Here we have an ‘easy expression bustier’ which makes hands-free pumping easier. It gives the freedom to do other things, is compatible with most breastpumps, is easy to wear, to wash and the material blends on its own or over a nursing bra or carnisole (I don’t even know what that is!)

Hands free

Hands free

The Belly bar boost. On the box it really says: “Our babies need chocolate”, recommended and checked by gynecologists. Who had thought that?!

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I was really surprised about this one!!! If someone had told me that you can buy a digital prenatal listening system in a conventional baby store, I would not have believed it. But there is a market for expecting parents that want to listen heart-to-heart. I was standing quite awhile in front of that product and had to smile. If somebody gave it to me, I would give it a try and do some experiments!

Listening together

Listening together

Heart shaped bamboodies in light pink! A must for nursing mothers!

bamboddies

bamboddies 

After I digested my first impression in the land of baby equipment, I truly wish, that I don’t have to buy much there. I hope to be as improvisational with starting a family as I am with living my life.