Hello! Welcome, and thanks for stopping by! This is Day 16 of 31 Days of Life in South Africa — a series in which every post has been written as a free-write in five minutes flat.
Once my kids were born, I had to figure out how to raise them in what was still a country mostly foreign to me.
I didn’t mind that I got to have ultrasounds at every monthly appointment — a perk that some of my American friends envied. I also didn’t mind getting to spend three nights in the hospital after my Caesareans instead of one or two.
What I had to get used to was calling diapers nappies and calling the stroller a pram. How the pacifier was a dummy, and there was no Desitin or liquid Tylenol. My mom and I would laugh about the ‘gripe water’ — a clear concoction we hadn’t heard of before, designed to help relieve babies of discomfort due to ‘wind.’
What surprised me even more was how much I had to adjust to once we went to the States for a visit with our 28-month-old and 6-month-old. I stood in the children’s medicine aisle and had no idea what to buy for my kid’s fever. If only I were back in Cape Town, I would just grab the liquid Panado and be out of there.
But my mind adjusted and learned how to mother these cross-cultural children across cultures.
And in spite of the moments of confusion and a tongue that at times wouldn’t cooperate, I count it as a gift.
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