A life-changing decision

So, I never in a million years thought I would say this.

We are moving to Sweden!

I was so sure I was in the right place, that we were gonna stay here. I always said I’m never going back. But somewhere along the way it changed. When Emma was born and my parents were visiting the thought started somewhere, but I still dismissed it. And to be honest, I never thought Odi would be open to the idea. And after they’d left it got stronger and stronger. With a new baby and a whole new life I started realizing how alone we were. I started thinking about my childhood, and having a huge family and so many family friends around and I realized that we don’t have that. And even if we could get out more and make more connections it just won’t be the same. Not to mention the help, that we don’t have here, with the baby and the dogs and everything. They say it takes a village, and we definitely do not have a village here.

The more I started missing my family and friends, the more I saw what we’re missing here and everything we would have there. And it made me really sad. How much they would miss with Emma, and how much I’m gonna miss. For myself this place is amazing to live, for us as a couple too, and we don’t really have a need to a huge social life. But as a family, and for Emma, as parents, for me as a mom, all of sudden this place didn’t feel right anymore.

We went back and forth for some time, and non of us like being in an in between, we’re people who take action. I still felt that the right decision would be clear at one point or another. The more I thought about it the more I realized that all we really have in life is time, and all that’s really important is your loved ones. So we decided that it was time for a new adventure.

I never thought it would be scarier moving back than it was to move away. I guess it’s because I never thought I would, and because I left for a reason. But I am a different person now, and my life is different, and I need different things, we do. So there are a lot of things that are unclear, and there are so many things that need to fall into place, but it feels like the right choice.

As usual with us it all went really fast too, as soon as we decided we started fixing everything and all of a sudden we were moving in a few weeks. Odi decided to stay behind and work a bit more before joining us, which is obviously so hard for all of us. We sold all our stuff, hired a moving company and then we were off.

I cannot believe that we’re doing this. It’s so unreal and I have no idea if this is gonna be the right thing. But one thing is for sure, you need to follow your heart and your gut. And what’s the worst thing that can happen? We end up not liking to live there and we move somewhere else. We really have so many choices, sometimes to many, and making one doesn’t mean it’s forever, maybe it’s just for right now.

It feels so weird and a bit sad to leave this chapter behind. Barcelona has given me so much, so much self development, so many dreams, so many good times, parties and amazing amazing memories, moving here also meant meeting the love of my life, getting engaged, having my baby girl and one extra fluffy baby too. I will always be so extremely happy that we moved here and for all the times we’ve spent here. It’s gonna be sad to leave, but I’m so excited to be closer to our loved ones, and to see what this new adventure has to offer.

Postpartum essentials

Before giving birth I also read a lot about things that you should keep in the house for when you come back from the hospital. And here is a list of things that I have actually needed or been happy to have.

  • Maternity pads and big panties to go with them.
    I thought that I would be able to switch back to normal pads already in the hospital ha ha boy was I wrong.
  • Spray bottle for water
    In the hospital the shower was right next to the toilet which made it easier but at home we don’t have the luxury, so I’ve had a spray bottle to use instead of toilet paper after peeing, because, it hurts to pee.
  • Belly wrap
    I don’t know about you guys but after giving birth it literally felt like nothing in my stomach was attached, that everything was just flopping around in there. So a belly wrap made walking a lot more comfortable. I only use it when we go out for actual walks though.
  • Easy self care products
    I’m so so so happy for my skin care products that I normally use because they’re fast and they’re easy. I use a skin care device and not a 7 step skin care routine which made it a lot easier to keep taking care of my skin in this new situation.
  • Tank tops
    I went out and got those nursing tops, but to be honest a normal tank top works just as good for me. So instead I would spend that money on buying more tank tops instead. In that case I think nursing bras are more worth it.

Other things that have helped a lot is for example to get groceries delivered so we don’t have to think about that and a good big water bottle cause man does breastfeeding make you thirsty.

Tips for having a baby in another country

As you might now I’m Swedish and my fiance is French and we’re living in Barcelona. So I wanted to tell you all a little about my experience and thoughts so far. It’s of course a challenge to be living in a different country when this huge life-changing thing happens. Especially when you don’t know the language very well. And let me tell you, the beginning of this pregnancy was not easy for us. You can read more about the emotional process in this post The shock and struggles of the first weeks of pregnancy.

So when we found out I was pregnant we
1. Didn’t really have any experience with the Spanish health care system
2. Didn’t speak Spanish very well
3. Were living in an apartment that had mold in it, and the contract was until the end of July, around the due date.

So the first few weeks were very stressful, and even though we knew that it would be okay, it felt so stressful to get everything in order. We started with making an appointment with a midwife. We were registered in a specific place, in the area we lived, and we went. I was still in shock about being pregnant and I just needed to know what to do. However, the midwife did not speak a word of English, and didn’t slow down the Spanish for us to understand either. She was rude and just kept in talking, to Odi, not to me, and the panic grew. Eventually I couldn’t help it, I started crying, and what does she do? She turns to Odi and asks HIM if I even wanted the baby…

We also contacted the agency we were renting the apartment from, about needing to end the contract because of the mold. Since I’m also super allergic and was very very sick most days, so that was not a very good situation and at first it seemed like they were gonna fight us too.

But eventually everything turned out okay. We got recommended a doula and went for a meeting with the two women we got recommended. And let me tell you, I didn’t even know what doula was. They explained that they worked a lot with expat mums and they were a support system for us, they could also help with the language people if needed, and they would be with us all through this pregnancy and for the birth. After that meeting both me and Odi felt that we could breathe again. That we would have someone to turn to and someone to help us through this whole thing. We managed to get off the contract and we were super lucky to find an amazing apartment super fast. So in just a few weeks, we moved. When we moved we also got signed to another CAP (medical center), and got a different midwife. We went for the first appointment, and we got one that spoke English. And after that all the midwife visits and ultrasounds, we got people who spoke English.

We feel comfortable in the CAP that we’re in now, with the midwives we have had, with our doulas and we love love love our new apartment.

So here are my tips for having a baby in another country, more specifically in Barcelona, but maybe it can be helpful for people living in other places too. Also, I don’t have a baby yet, so this is more so for the pregnancy. I’ll write a similar one after actually having a baby here.

  • You have a choice, you can change medical centers, hospitals and doctors. Make sure you’re comfortable. You have rights!
  • Hire a doula, now this is of course personal, but if you feel uncomfortable or insecure it’s really nice to have support from someone who knows what they’re doing.
  • Get all your papers in order. We were all over the place with the documents we needed and where we kept them, and as a organized person this one gave me so much comfort.
  • Contact your consulate and ask all your questions. I sent an email and got a long respons with information about documents for registering a baby and what we need to do. Once again, feeling prepared usually gives some comfort.
  • Join communities for mums on social media. Ask all the questions you have and start connecting with people who are or have been in your situation.
  • Use the last point to also find groups and meet ups to join and attend.
  • Relax. Everything is gonna be fine. For me, the problems seemed bigger than the turned out to be, and I stressed out a lot for no reason.

Have you had a child in another country?
What was your experience?
What are your own tips for others in the same situation?


8 things I do every morning to start my day in a great way

I have touched this subject a little while talking about
1. Handling pregnancy hormones
2.Working through body issues

I value my personal growth very highly and keep it a part of my daily habits. One of my biggest missions, even bigger now since finding out I’m gonna become a mother, is to be the best possible version of myself and also to be as happy as I can possibly be. And I think those two go together.

So what does this actually mean? There are so many things out there that you can or should be doing and let’s face it, if we would follow all the advice out there we just wouldn’t have time for anything else. So I think it’s important to make sure you do what works for you. Working on yourself shouldn’t feel like a must.

For me it’s very important to start every day in the best possible way. I mean, how the day starts will just set the tone for the rest of the day. So my morning routine looks like this
1. I get up so that I have lots of time before I head to class. A stressful morning will just follow me for the entire day.
2. Skincare routine, always using my skincare device which does the job in 2 minutes. Even more important with pregnancy skin…
Get your own with a 10% discount through the links:
In the links you’ll find the product with cleansers for 5 different skintypes, just choose the one you want and finish the order.
Swedish link
Spanish link
If you live somewhere else, leave a comment and I’ll give you a link.

My skincare device, the lumispa, completely changed my life.

3. Stretching. This has also become more important to me with the pregnancy, since my back usually hurt in the morning and I just feel more stiff. Since I started doing my 5-min morning yoga I feel a lot better.
4. Meditation. I use an app like headspace or inside timer, or I find something on youtube. About 10-15 min of guided meditation. This has really changed so much for me. For finding my calm and being more present.

5. Visualization. Now how you wanna do this is completely up to you. I have done my visualization in a few different ways. Writing for example. Lately I have found another way though. I start a strong song or meditation music and close my eyes and then I visualize my future, my dreams, myself reaching my goals, my family living in our dream house, visualizing where you are, and who you’re with when reaching your goals and living your dream.
6. Journaling. I write, my feelings and thought in general, what’s going on inside me at the moment. I also write down to-do’s and ideas, and I fill out my daily greatness journal I’m completely in love with this planner, it has weekly planning, 90-day goals, daily schedule, gratitude and
reflection.
7. Breakfast. I always make sure I have time for a good breakfast. Of course this also got more important since I got pregnant, but I do think it’s important either way. I always do oatmeal with soy milk and blue berries, and of course my supplements and prenatal vitamins. Now when it comes to supplements, since I started taking them I haven’t been sick once, and I feel so much more energetic and strong (accept for my first trimester where nothing could stop the tiredness) and you should always check with your doctor before taking any if you’re pregnant. Here’s 15% off of my supplements.
Swedish link
Spanish link
(and again, if you live somewhere else, comment and I’ll give you a link)

Here are all the areans which the supplements are good for.

8. Lastly, I walk to class. I’m lucky enough to have a good distance to my classes. Hopefully I will manage to exchange the walk to school for a longer walk with the dogs once I don’t have classes anymore. Point is, move!

What’s your morning routine like?
How do you think a morning routine effects the rest of your day?
What are your best tips for starting the day in a good way?