Music is the pulse of life! For me anyway. Beats echo in my house, my office (Poor Danielle, marketing assistant is subjected to every decade and even MJ “I’M Bad I’M Bad – no apologies here!) and when all else fails … music fills the silence in my head. From jazz to heavy metal every beat inspires a dream and locking into my pulse reveals the rhythm of how I want to live. Music… I believe is the closest thing to religion, it moves us.

In Episode #6 Link Telegraph Contributor and mother of two, Sally Peck shares with us how before bedtime her entire family have a dance before lights off. What a wonderful way to end the day and a little tradition I am borrowing.

My daughter, Ariella has been dosing off to Jazz extraordinaire Stan Getz since she was 6 months young and if its not foot tapping, head nodding house during bath time it’s nursery rock anthems on route to nursery. There isn’t a day we go without music. Music can bond the coolest of strangers, imagine what it can do for our little humans.

You will see on my blog there is a Hotmilk Podcast playlist, link ( thank you to whoever created spotify…and Jeans… and pumps… I Digress). While I write or work or even prepare for the next podcast I love a little “music downtime” after a long day. So I thought I would share the #Iheartmusic love. So while you browse the blog or spy on all our guests, do me a favor and grab a cuppa, stiff glass of something frosty and enjoy the tunes and assault your senses.

While I am writing this in my head, Ariella is holding my hands, feet on mine and we pretending to Waltz …insert unforgettable” Nat King Cole. Be still my beating mommy heart, … it is these moments when motherhood plays out in slow motion and with every swish and sway another magical memory is etched in my heart.

Find your pulse…. and enjoy your rhythm of mommyhood, they come in waves

And on that soft and fuzzy note, before I sign off and post this – I cant help but say R.E.S.P.E.C.T – to the woman who danced her way through labor pains https://youtu.be/Wvt_H3xyERs

Personally, I screamed the F*!@K*G roof down … I tried a back rub, walking the isle of the hospital until 55 hours later left me with only but a voice box strong enough to contract harder and longer than my contractions #alldignitylost

Till next time….

Dom xxx

Birth After Loss

Birth after Loss ….

I took me four years to realise that I had not grieved my father’s death. “Don’t make big life decisions after trauma” is what the famous “THEY” say… I clearly didn’t get the memo. Soon after my father was taken (yes often than not I blame the big man upstairs), I got married and had a baby, a beautiful little girl. Ariella Petra

What I didn’t see coming was the harsh reality of emotional turmoil between mourning a death and celebrating a life. My heart string reduced to brittle ashes and with the slightest shift from happy tears to gut wrenching sobs, either one would feel like the final take.

Of all the rush of emotions I was told I was going to experience when I had my baby, the one they forgot to mention, is the jolt of immortality. This sucker comes rushing at you like a derailed train and to fuel my fear, I had no family here in the UK, no childhood friends or siblings with babies close by. Instead I had what felt like endless hours of midnight breastfeeding and sleep deprivation that only MI5 assassins are equipped to beat… Until, of course, she smiled and my brittle heart strings melted in an abyss of love and warmth. I’m so grateful for those moments, for every smile and gurgle I got better at dealing with death and breastfeeding. It was in those darkest moments when Hotmilk was born. No more endless rabbit holes of “how to” Googleing. I wanted to talk about it with real parents – preferably with alive and kicking ones. And since my father was no longer answering me, it was time to chat about the naked truths of parenting with other moms and dads.

While I have you here chatting about parenting truths and death…lets talk about death. Memento Mori – literal meaning: never forget death.

I have thought about tattooing this on my hand. Not because I want to indulge in the constant drone of sadness but in fact the opposite. I often find myself scrambling to find heartfelt but real and raw ways to explain death to my now 4 year old who wants to know who her Grand dad is. I do know this, we don’t talk enough about death. I plan to open the dialogue with her; it’s a conversation that will be constant and ever evolving as we age together. Death influences how we live and how we live can influence how we die, yet I don’t feel like I talk about it enough, not with my loved ones or my friends.

I know my father and I only chatted once before he passed. He mentioned in passing that he wanted to be cremated. That moment while sitting in the funeral parlour and being asked how I would like to put my father to rest (well quite frankly I don’t WANT to you idiot), the weight of having to make the decision on my own without really knowing what he wanted, was devastatingly overwhelming. A decision I still question today and have no option but to live with.

I never want my daughter to experience the same dread and wonder. So let me be clear. I want to be cremated and with the gentle breeze of the Greek Mediterranean ocean, let me loose. Plant an olive tree, lemon tree or Jasmine tree anywhere close to Ariella, so she can sit, soak up the perfumes that surround her …and talk to me. I’m listening, I’m right here baby girl.

Shall we talk about death?