Adeus! – estamos crescendo!

Estou aqui sentanda escrevendo e a minha frente, num telao, vejo um monte de nossas fotos em família, desde quando as meninas eram pequenininhas, lá na Inglaterra, na Hungria, no Brasil, Nova Iorque, até chegarmos aqui, no Vale do Silício! Sensasional!

 

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É incrível ver como minhas menininhas se tornaram umas mocinhas, como meu baby boy já é um meninão! Não muito legal, porém, constatar quão pouco cabelo me sobrou na cabeça rs!

 

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Eu costumava pensar que era tão difícil criar duas meninas pequenas, longe do meu país, longe da minha família…e agora, olhando para trás eu posso te falar o seguinte:

-Bons tempos! Quanto maiores os filhos, maiores os problemas – mesmo rs! Qualquer pai de adolescente, não importa o quão comportado ou santinho seja esse adolescente, ele vai te dizer: a adolescência é uma fase extremamente difícil e complicada para os pais! É nessa fase que você não sabe nada, eles sabem tudo, e não sabem de nada! O resultado dessa equação é doloroso e inspirador ao mesmo tempo.

Como mãe, você sofre se o teu filho tem uma febre, um vírus horroroso, uma cirurgia de apendicite! Bom, quando você é mãe de um adolescente, você pensa que o mundo acabou quando seu filho/a te diz que não tem amigos, que não conseguiu entrar para o time da escola, ou pior, quando eles estão com depressão ou ansiedade!

Quando os filhos são bebês você sente uma afinidade incrível com aquele ser pequenino e tão dependente de você. É um relacionamento tão forte que ás vezes, ao ficar longe do bebê parece que estão te tirando um pedaço do próprio corpo! Esse amor tão intenso que até dói, não se repete em nenhuma outra fase da vida humana, nao assim! Você sente uma força vinda do seu corpo inteiro, e do seu coração a qual protege o seu pequeno de tudo e de todos. Quando eles crescem, essa força ainda está em você, mas ela não é mais tão eficiente…simplesmente dar um beijinho no machucado, já não o faz sarar tão depressa.

Os teus adolescentes vão fazer más escolhas, vão levar tropeções, vão cair;  tudo o que você poderá fazer será…observar, assistir, rezar e chorar quietinha, secar as lágrimas antes deles chegarem em casa. O seu amor incondicional estará lá, sempre. Seus filhos adolescentes o rejeitarão, mas você sabe que eles precisam demais desse seu amor, eles querem ser amados. Você permanece imutável e espera. Você sabe que tudo isso faz parte do ´crescer´, eles estão formando seus próprios eus.

Enquanto nossos adolescentes se esforçam em se tornar os melhores adultos que possam ser, e o mais diferente de você o quanto for possível (rs faz parte gente); você conseguirá vislumbrar em meio ao caos, essa pessoa magnífica que está se formando debaixo dos seus olhos!

Tudo isso acontece muito rápido. Da mesma forma que minhas meninas espalhavam seus brinquedos pela sala, hoje o chão da minha sala esta forrado de pecinhas de Lego – afinal eu tenho um filho de 5 anos! – Eu não me importo, nem faço caso dele guardar tudinho antes de ir pra cama. Eu sei que não demora nada e esses Legos desaparecerão da minha vida por completo, assim, sem nenhuma cerimônia especial…

Adri está dizendo adeus e um muito obrigada do fundo do coração! Meus três filhos maravilhosos estão crescendo e eu também! Sem medo de ficar velha ou obsoleta rs! Eu experimentei de tudo durante a maternidade; eu cometi muitos erros e ainda consigo cometer uns erros novinhos em folha rs. Eu trabalhei período integral, meio período, e também fiquei em casa com as crianças. Eu amei (amo!) os meus filhos loucamente e também já quis esguelá-los (na fantasia rs!) muitas vezes!

Amar as pessoas do jeitinho que elas são, cuidar das pessoas é algo natural em mim. Então agora estou deixando o AdriandHer3!, para poder me dedicar ao meu baby número 4: Café com Abraço – um grupo muito especial de empoderamento de mulheres, com eventos mensais, aqui na Baía de São Francisco! O Café tem sido descrito e mencionado por muitas mulheres aqui no Vale, de varias formas positivas, mas eu creio que uma das melhores veio da Luciana Peixoto:

‘…você fundou algo parecido com um templo ( no sentido de local no qual se busca paz de espírito) e nele as pessoas/ mulheres são bem-vindas e convidadas a compartilhar seus interesses e dividir assuntos pertinentes à realidade de todas, sem muita ficção, personagens imaginários ou julgamentos. Vendo desse ponto que estou, isso parece ser inovador no campo da espiritualidade e crescimento da consciência humana. Estou impressionada.Essa iniciativa contagia as pessoas sem exigir que elas sigam a orientação de nenhuma filosofia específica. É revolucionário. Você é uma mulher revolucionária. Está fazendo a diferença e executando muito bem.´

Agradeci e agradeço muitissimo a Lu Peixoto por suas palavras de incentivo. Isso e o que todas nos precisamos: incentivo! Tenho grande admiração por mulheres que realmente empoderam outras mulheres. Mulheres que realmente acreditam em ´sisterhood´ e que estão prontas e aptas a levantar umas às outras, sem se preocupar em ´quem vai chegar lá primeiro´. A Luciana Peixoto é uma delas.

Estamos todas crescendo, juntas, e isso é muito bom!

Fica aqui o convite a voce, mulher, a se juntar a nos!  www.cafecomabraco.com

Estarei escrevendo e contando sobre nossas jornadas como mulheres brasileiras, aqui no Vale do Silício! Voce nem imagina o quanto estamos aprontando por aqui!!!

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Cafe Conquistas! @ Xerox Parc, Palo Alto, CA – Agosto 2016

Venham para o abraço!!!

Adri xxx

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Good bye post – we are all growing up!

As I sit in my living room to write what seems to be AdriandHer3’s last post, right in front of me there is a large screen showing our miscellaneous family pictures.

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It is wonderful to watch how my little girls became young women, how my last baby became a big boy. And, it is scary to see how much less hair I have on my head now!

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I used to think it was so hard to bring up two little girls and now looking back I can tell you:

‘Nope! It was a breeze! Any parent of a teenager, no matter how good their teens are, will say the same thing: adolescence is an extremely challenging time for parenting. It is a time when you know nothing, they know everything, and they know nothing! The results of that equation are heartbreaking and inspiring at the same time.

As a parent, you suffer when your little kid has a fever, a horrible virus or an appendicitis surgery! Well, when parenting a teen, you think basically life must be over when they say they do not have any friends, or did not make it to the team, or worse, are experiencing teen depression or anxiety.

The thing is, when they are babies you experience a closeness to your child that is equal to nothing in this world. A love, a sense of great power exuding from your entire body and heart that will protect them from anything. When they grow up this power is still there, but it does not seem to be quite as effective…simply ‘kissing it better’ won’t do anymore.

Your teens may stumble and fall and all you can do is watch…pray…tear up quietly an dry your tears before they come home. Your unconditional love is there and they seem to reject it, but you know deep down they want to be loved, they need it so badly. So, you remain unchangeable, you… wait. It is all part of their growing up, the forming fabrics of their very own character.

As your teens strive to become young adults and to be as different from you as possible; you will catch glimpses of the great human beings they are becoming. Glimpses among all the chaos!

Just like my girls’s Polly Pockets, Bratz dolls and drawings used to be spread around our living room, today I have thousands of Lego pieces from my 5-year-old boy! I do not care, I do not even make a fuss for my son to pick them all up before going to bed. I just look at them and know…these too, will disappear way too soon…

Adri is saying a heartfelt thank you and good-bye! As my 3 wonderful children grow, I grow too! And without fear of growing old, or obsolete. I’ve  experimented all the time throughout motherhood: I made and still make tons of mistakes. I worked full-time, part-time, was a stay-at-home-mom…I loved them and also wanted to kill them at times! (not literally of course!).

Loving people for who they are, caring for people is something very strong in me. So now, I exit AdriandHer3! in order to look after my 4th baby: Cafe com Abraco: a very dear expat women’s empowering and inspiring group, which holds monthly events in the Bay Area. Cafe has been described in many beautiful ways, but Luciana Peixoto’s definition was quite on point:

‘…Cafe com Abraco is like a temple – as in a place where you search for spiritual peace – and in this place people/women are welcome and invited to share their interests as well as all aspects of their lives, without much fiction, imaginary characters or judgement…This is an innovation in the field of spirituality and human growth. This initiative is contagious and people participate without having to follow any specific philosophy. It is revolutionary!’

I have to thank Lu Peixoto once more for her kind words. I admire all women who truly empower one another. The ones who understand the meaning of ‘sisterhood’ and are ready and willing to help each other, without worrying about ‘who gets there first’. Lu Peixoto is one of them.Thank you for supporting us all!

We are all growing together and it feels good!

See you there @ www.cafecomabraco.com

I will be posting everything about our journeys, right here in Silicon Valley! You have no idea what we are up to! It is all good!!

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Cafe com Abraco: Cafe Achievements! @ Xerox Parc, Palo Alto, August 2016

Want to know more about it? Check out our website or join our Facebook group Cafe com Abraco!

Adri xxx

 

 

 

 

Please don’t grow!

Being a mom is being controversial, a liar and fake!

I love my kids… mainly when they are asleep! The silence, the peace around the house! Then, I finally have some well deserved time for myself: I go on Facebook and post cute photos of my kids, or videos of my toddler playing, or I just go on looking at my children’s pictures, old ones, preferably. Can’t get away from them!

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When they are having tantrums I want them to grow up! Grow please grow, I cannot take this anymore! Then, when they grow up and are kindergartners…oh, that last Summer is a mix of feelings!’ Yay! Extra cash! No more paying for day care or preschool! Yay! Time for myself!  Real school time, homework, big kid, I won’t be wiping anyone’s butt anymore!’

If you have a 5-year-old and you live in the Valley, you are about to embark in the world of School! If you have a Senior…you are entering the world of ‘College’…in any case it is the time of separation. The so longed ‘time for yourself’! It’s here, it’s arrived! And you are ready, right?! Besides, you were going mad bringing up these kids- toddlers on your neck, teens on your nerves! It is your time now!

Many of us find ourselves in a limbo…I did it all and it is time to go back to work (yikes!) or, I have being a working mom and now I have no more babies (what?!), my baby is all grown up! (what?!)

In my case, I am going to have a bit of both…this is my ‘baby boy’s’ last Summer and next I’ll have a daughter leaving to College. I have waited so much for these moments, and I’m not embarrassed to say I do have a couple of feelings I am currently faking!

Fake feeling # 1: I’ve been pretending it is just awful that here where I live, in Los Gatos, California, my 5-year-old-son will join Kindergarten for only 2h30′ per day! It is close to obscene that all I will have time for is to take him to school, come back home, clear the breakfast table, check social media (ha ha) and go back to pick him up! Outrageous Educational system! How can a mother work!?

Reality: Thank God! That means I get to stay with him one more year!! One more year, hugging, kissing, telling him 24/7 how much I love him, being in the pool during Summer, pumpkin farms in Fall, Christmas lights in Winter!! We are good! shhhh!

Fake feeling #2: Next Summer, there will be one free bedroom at home! Finally an office! I hope my daughter will get into an English College because she is British, she wants to go back home and she will be so happy in London – I want her to be happy!

Reality: Please God, it will be so nice if she gets into a UC!! She can drive home at the weekends or at least for every holiday! Thanksgiving with the whole family!

We moms are like that; we go crazy, we complain, we demand our down time, we need to be left alone until we are really left alone!

We know we bring up our kids to the world, and we try to make a good job out of it. But…just between us: it is the hardest part of our lovely job as moms: to let them go!

Enjoy your madness!

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While it lasts! 😉

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Much love, energy and strength to you all moms, everywhere! As for me…I carry on complaining a little and enjoying tons and tons of this exhilarating thing: Motherhood!

Adri xxx

 

 

 

 

Neither sympathy nor empathy!

Let’s talk business; business trips, his business trips…

Leaving me behind with two teens, a toddler and still wanting sympathy for a jet lag? You’ve got to be kidding me! 😉

I jump off my bed at 6am, zombi myself towards a kitchen and start preparing 3 lunchboxes, then a decent breakfast, while trying to wake up 2 teen girls.

He wakes up at, let’s say, 7am (maybe later), brushes his teeth, shaves (Lucky!I have a mustache myself by now), changes into clean clothes (Me? Apron over pajamas, real sexy!) and goes to the breakfast room, where a marvelous buffet awaits him and other adults.

I push my children out of the door, come back inside to pick up something I’d forgotten (do this about dozen times) carry my half asleep 41lbs toddler into my car, buckle him up. My teen, in the car,  is giving me a furious look  that reads: ‘We are going to be late, it is all your fault, you and your baby son who decides to do a number two at 7:55 AM;  I hate you!’

He just takes the lift to the breakfast room then, drives a shiny and clean hired car to a child-free conference center.

Two days a week, I have no children with me from 8:30am to 4pm! The things I do at those ‘free times’ 😉

He has no children 24/7 for 9 days and no kitchen! – Is that even imaginable?!?Sounds like a Walt Disney movie to me; so far from reality!

I plan a menu for 4 people, with 3 healthy meals a day plus lunchboxes, plus afternoon snacks.  I endure all sorts of tantrums, I put down fire, I fight viruses and clean vomit off car seat. I pop into Wholefoods on Friday night, and buy soup because I am exhausted -can’t face any more cooking! The day is far from over; I have to pick up one teen from Recital rehearsal, at 8:30pm, and another teen from school theater at 9pm. Of course, these venues are at completely different locations and my toddler is beyond tired. Fun!

He gets to collapse into a pillowtop mattress with freshly laundered sheets every night! At the end of his business trip, he will visit his family. Europe is lovely, so easy and cheaper to  travel by!  (Mathematically speaking his stop over in Budapest sums up to 3 more days I’ll stay with 3 children, on my own!).

Friday night, 9:30pm. Toddler fell asleep in the car…we get back to the house, teens have dinner and go to TV time, it’s Friday. I cannot even remember if I have had dinner or what the heck  has happened in the last 5 hours!

Earlier on, I’d called my husband to see if he’d already arrived at his mom’s. I heard background noises…

‘Is your mom there? Are the neighbours with you guys?’

‘No, my mom is asleep at home, I am at a pub with an old friend from school!’

‘Ow. Okay! Bye!’

How could he not meet his old friend from school, right? Right.

No sympathy! You men or women travelling on business will get no sympathy from me, whatsoever. Never. Ever. Ever. (rs)

Handling one, two or three children by yourself in a country which is not even yours, is ‘challenging’; in business terms.  ‘Freaking maddening’ in a mom’s terms! So, for the record; I will consider it an absolute insult, if my husband arrives here ‘tired’.

Suck it up darling! No sympathy for you right now :p Maybe later…;)

I hope my hubby is not too tired...so many conferences...poor guy!
I hope my hubby is not too tired…so many conferences…poor guy!
'It's a hard knock life for us' lol
‘It’s a hard knock life for us’ lol

Adri xxx

Teens and Tots

Monday, March 9th 2015: The week we set our clocks forward, here in Silicon Valley.  I knew I was doomed to being late this week. It was also my daughter’s birthday. She was turning 13! But, she’s been a teen for at least two years now…all that happened on Monday, was an official warning: Adriana, you are now officially the mother of two teens. Oh, and don’t forget that toddler! Good luck, dear!

Here in America, as the birthday girl’s parent, you can pop in to the school and deliver some pizzas for the kids, as a birthday treat. If the kid is a kid and not a teen…some parents chose to sit with them as part of the treat! But, God forbid, you do that to a teen! Your mission, as the teen parent is very clear: hand the pizzas to your teen, at the office, with no balloons, absolutely no kisses and please, don’t speak. In and out. Simple.

Could I handle this simple task? Course not! Am I a connected mother with the school? Sure not! I have a toddler! I cannot volunteer as much, I cannot pay attention to details such as: knowing exactly what time my 13-year-old has recess. So, I rely on her to tell me the correct time, right?! Wrong! Never, ever rely on a very artistic and lovely 13-year-old!

According to my darling daughter, her recess finishes at 1:30pm and ‘probably’ starts at 1pm. So, to be on the safe side, I take my toddler to the park in the am and at around 1pm I have the 4 large pizzas in my car boot.

I park at school and think: Kind of quiet for recess…oh, the bell is just about to ring…I am so proud of myself! Not late!! I go in and my guts tell me: you are so not at the right place at the right time! Nooooooooo! She was wrong! Recess WAS at 12:30pm! And there was I, messed up hair, dirty jeans, toddler and 4 pizza boxes in hand!! My first thought was: ‘Can I please, see my daughter so that I can grab her by her arms and shake her a little bit, just a bit, won’t cause brain injury, promisse!’ Arghhhhh!

Well, as a very resourceful mother of 3, I deliver two pizzas to the teachers and staff, who are so happy for my ‘random’ act of kindness 😉 I then, come home with two large pizzas that will be our dinner. No cooking tonight 😉 Done! Tragedy and humiliation transformed! Ta-da!!!

When you have a little toddler and teens, the whole logistics of simple daily life activities are compromised. Your sanity is compromised. And, you are lucky if you are left with any friends, at all! Because, even though you do have a calendar, a schedule which you try to follow and be organized at some level…there is always that teen drama, that toddler tantrum lurking around!

Are you planning on having a family? Please, mind the gap!!!!!!!!

I love my life! 😉 I do I do I do!

So much fun has to happen before a pizza delivery ;)
So much fun has to happen before a pizza delivery 😉 And no, he is not struggling, he loves his ‘Bibi Lulu’ friends!
Cheese pizza, anyone?!
Cheese pizza, anyone?!

Have an awesome weekend!

Adri xxx

ps. Monday was her bday, but I could only deliver (try to) the pizzas…today! Logistics of a mother of a toddler and 2 teens! I tell you!

New Year New Me!?

Happy New Year! – this post was written at around 7:30am on New Year’s Day – just saying…

What?! New what??

I went to bed at around 3am, woke up at 7am. Energy!!! (nope) Young child!

Right now, my son is having an overdose of Pokemon (he is 3 1/2 only) because:

1. I can’t quite open my eyes yet

2.I can’t talk just grunt

3.He went to bed on New Year’s Eve at around 8pm and woke up at 7am on New Year’s Day!!!!!!OMG it’s all his fault, right?! Doesn’t he know better?!?! And he kept talking and talking and talking …………………………..

As this little man dragged me out of my bed, along the hallway and into the kitchen…I kind of saw the dining table and a pack of Mochi (Japanese ice-cream) there, all alone…but it was like sevenish in the am so I just ignored it, thinking: ‘Wow, the girls finished it all up last night.’

Arriving at the kitchen, the cluttered sink greats me:’Ow, hi yesterday’s party’.  Ignore it… I go into the pantry and grab a healthy breakfast for the little one:

As healthy as I could get this am! Impressive!
As healthy as I could get this am! Impressive!

After my cup of tea, on my way to my pc, I see the Mochi at a closer up:

Would you look at that! Japanese ice-cream does melt overnight!
Would you look at that! Japanese ice-cream does melt overnight!

What the heck!!!!!! The teens left a box of ice-cream overnight on the dining table, on the top of the Hungarian white cotton table-cloth!! – I woke up!

Rushed to the sink and finally saw my lawn, through the kitchen window…trashed…the only trashed lawn in the tidy little court where we live…Just to  remind all the neighbours: those guys had some fun last night…Who cares!? (me ignoring again) It’s New Year’s morning! (very, very morning, it’s too morning for me!!!I feel like I’m gonna die!!!!!!!!!).

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So, Happy New Year Moms! Welcome to 2015! Thank God some things never, ever change:

Teens are messy and have no clue! Toddlers get up early and turn on the chatterbox mode! Mothers are made out of steel! Oh yeah! 😉

I am invincible! Yes, Adriana. Feel the youth! Like High School years: when you believed you knew it all! You could do anything! Invincible an immortal! This is the mindset you need to look after 3 kids! (so que nao! rs!)

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And so our fabulous year starts all over again! Much health, patience and superpowers for you, girls! 😉

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Adri xxx

Christmastide untidy!

Merry Christmas!

It’s now 8:20pm in Silicon Valley, on December 25th, 2014! My husband is putting the little one to bed, my teens are each in their bedrooms, totally connected yet disconnected! Try and call them for dinner…mute mute mute. You hear nothing, headphones these days are so very efficient, huh? And the trance of ‘Parks and Recreation’?!  You tell me!

Christmas eve was wonderful: we were altogether in much disorder and chaos, lots of love and very little patience; my family! We were so happy! The children were super anxious to open the presents, of course. We said our prayers and for the first time, my husband spoke first, then our little boy followed on… The kids swallowed dinner, skipped dessert and just placed themselves on the floor around the Christmas tree!

One day before Christmas, I was reading lovely letters that friends sent over, together with beautiful pictures, cards…and I thought: how do you guys do this? I don’t even join in the photo card craze because I know I stand no chance at being on time with that! Just look at our failed attempts to capture one picture perfect ‘family moment’ on Christmas Eve…

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One of my Christmas presents from my husband was this book about Blogging. I started reading it and I must tell you readers…not gonna happen! This little blog of mine will remain lame; I cannot achieve so much with so little time in my hands! In this book ,they have interviews with famous bloggers; one of them is a mom of 3, just like me. Except that not…she is nothing like me at all! All her family pics are beyond perfect, so is her hair and complete attire…It looks like a great blog but it gives me the creeps! The more I read that blog, the more I thought: Hang on a minute…you cannot possibly be enjoying motherhood as much as you say you do, if you stop every second to take pics of your kids, like: ‘Hang in there children! These will be awesome for the blog!’ It is as if they are living a ‘Big Brother’ in a Blogosphere!

The other peculiar present was from my girls…

I have superpowers!!!
I have superpowers!!!

And my husband got this one from our girls…

Who!? Who is the Boss!?!
Who!? Who is the Boss!?!

Well, my husband seems to be the Boss and I am Mrs. Incredible!

I believe I’ve managed to care for all the important people in my life during this busy time 😉 I have been very emotional, true – expats get very sensitive during Christmastide… But, I have also been very, very happy just by looking at my family: my girls, my little boy, and the love of my life. They are here with me, driving me up the wall and placing me on cloud 9 all in the course of a day!

Come 2015 we are ready for you! As ready as a ‘normal’ (?!) family can be…

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Adri xxx