Monday, April 1, 2019

New milestones for Mama Ashlyn

Off for my first solo oversea trip! 

If not because of the privilege to attend the Lego Idea Conference in Billund, Denmark, I probably won't have a chance or think of traveling alone. While I'm so anxious about this first solo trip, I know it's a good milestone for me in so many aspects. I always talk about milestones for the girls so just bear with me focusing on mine this time! 

When I first received the invite, I skipped it as the email was wordy and lengthy. With the header as Lego Idea Conference, I thought it was a general press release and just ignored it. Thankfully, I took a second look at it, this time reading it carefully. I was excited to find out that it was an invite by Lego Foundation. I looked up the website and found out that the conference will be held at Lego House in Billund. However, I was doubtful as it seems too good to be true. I went around contacting Lego Foundation and Lego on Facebook. I still didn't believe it until my friend who is working in Lego Singapore helped to verify for me! Thanks Serene!

I'm so thankful, honored, privileged and humbled to have the opportunity to take part in this annual key event. I'm neither a Professor or a Specialist, but just a passionate mother to 2, sharing our parenting journey on the social media. I thankful that they welcome a little voice of mine. After 6 years of serious blogging and instagram-ing, this opportunity is a milestone and little recognition for me - not one for me to brag about, but one to keep me going. There are really still alot for me to learn and explore.

I write alot, but I hardly share about my blogging life. Is it even a taboo? Now that I'm finally having some time on the flight, I felt like sharing a little more about it. It seems really exciting, where our family gets to attend events, visit places, receive products and services. Yes, it is. However, there are much unseen hardwork and challenges behind all these curated photos and stories. There's no manual, no mentor. Many times, I just do it even though I'm unsure and out of my comfort zone. We just have to do it like we know how. Sometimes, I even doubt if I'm sharing in the right way. I just keep trying and learn from the community.

It can be challenging juggling work, family and the social media gig. I protect my time with the family, especially the girls, so writing and photo editing mostly take place when I'm on commute or when they are asleep. There are sacrifices to be made - a little lesser sleep, a busy mind and lesser me-time. I'm blessed to enjoy writing my own stories so it has been a joy and my kind of me-time. This journey can be full of doubts, time consuming and energy draining yet brings me so much joy and energy. It brings me and my family opportunities, send us to places, connect me to people. But most importantly, this journey challenged to think more about upbringing, parenthood and life.

It's a learning and fruitful journey but I definitely didn't do it all by myself. I deeply know that God is at work. Hubby has been most supportive in what I'm doing, always saying yes and asking me to stretch my limit. The girls are my motivation. The community has been very encouraging and I have also found new like-minded friends.

And now, to my milestone of traveling alone! I always travel with Hubby and family; and just once with my ex colleagues on a team building. Yes, not even with my close girlfriends. Hubby tends to be protective, and he worried about me traveling oversea. That's was when I was in my 20s. To have him giving his fullest support and blessing for me to on this trip alone meant alot to me and him. He sees me through my growing up years from 18 years old, and has always been my advisor and pillar of support. Now, it's like a time for me to be a grown up and check off this new experience. It's definitely a good start for my birthday month! Now, I pray hard for a safe trip! 

While I think I would enjoy more traveling with him and the girls and miss them, I think this solo trip came at a good time. I have never been away from them apart from a few nights like when I was in the hospital after delivery and when I stayed over my parents' place after my Dad's mild stroke. It seems a good break away from the endless parenting duties to recharge myself. Hubby is sporting enough to take over the duties even though he's not good at the chores. But, I think they will be fine as he's a hands-on Dad. Emma was so happy to hear that I'm traveling because she gets to watch TV without me. She even drew me a note in case I miss her. But when we departed earlier, she brawled and asked for me over TV and presents. Avalyn was kind of clueless. I'm already missing them, but I'm sure they will be fine with Hubby! Hubby earlier thought it might be a April Fool joke for me as the conference starts on 1 April, but now he thinks it's more of a April Fool's joke for him. Hahaha!

It's always busy day in and out, though I try to have pockets of quiet time and me-time throughout the day. However, a short retreat will surely do good. I'm rereading the book "A Woman after God's Heart" by Elizabeth George, reconnecting myself with God too! Together with the theme of Lego Idea Conference "Unlocking the Power of Parenting". I can't wait to get new insights, meet people, be inspired and renewed!

May God continue to watch over me on this trip and my 3 precious at home!

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