Welcome to my blog.

My blog expresses my views and thoughts and in no way intends to offend however that does not guarantee it wont.

I write in a stream of consciousness and sometimes the odd typo or bad grammar may appear - please excuse these.

Please feel free to leave a comment if something inspires you to do so.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

The Time Has Come

"The time has come," the Walrus said,
"To talk of many things:
Of shoes--and ships--and sealing-wax--
Of cabbages--and kings--

And why the sea is boiling hot--

And whether pigs have wings."

Lewis Carroll (from Through the Looking-Glass and What Alice Found There, 1872)

And so I think the time has come, as sunshine graces our skies, to turn my thoughts from my 'Winter of Discontent'.

My hubby has been home now for 2 weeks - and no sign of him being whisked back to Adelaide. This weekend (which in Perth is a long one anyway) we both also took Friday and Tuesday off to spend some 'us' time together. Five whole days - wonderful.

Friday saw us head to Yanchep National Park and have a BBQ lunch, sharing the space with only the birds, the sunshine and a few flies (although really only 1 or 2). The breeze was chilly, the skies were blue and the company was special.

Need a hand with that BBQ?

We had to eat keeping our eyes on the over-friendly kookaburras, magpies and 28 (Port Lincoln) parrots - all of whom thought our sausages looked like something they wanted to share.

If you look closely you can see them here, just waiting for an opportunity to share!!

Coming for a closer look

Do you need a hand packing up?

We got to watch them brazenly come close and then try and see each other off so that they were the only ones there if a small piece of something happened to fall to the ground. Yes it was tempting to share with them, but working for a conservation agency, I know this only makes them more aggressive, and so we restrained ourselves.

Well I suppose the scraps on the BBQ will have to do - LOL

What a fabulous country we live in - bushland close to our city, filled with native wildlife and with facilities that encourage you out of your lounge and into the fresh air.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Oh How I Wish

How I wish I still had the innocence and naivety of a small child - how I wish I could easily find the fun in each day and the lack of inhibition that allowed me to dance when I felt like dancing.

Thursday morning I went to the kinder-gym with my daughter and littlest grand-daughter - there were probably about 40 kids there aged from about 10 months - 5 years.

All the equipment was set up - places for them to climb, tunnels to crawl through, trampolines to bounce on, balls to kick around, hula hoops to roll and behind all of this was the pumping music of the wiggles.

As I played with Immy I couldn't help but watch the other kids too - all of them were having a great time - no one was crying or fighting - everyone was sharing the space and just enjoying themselves.

And then Immy started to dance - she loves the Wiggles and there were a couple of songs that came on that were obviously favourites of her - and so here she was climbing and jumping and dancing all at the same time. She started clapping because she was so happy. You could not help but smile to watch her - trying to jump and dance at the same time, with a smile so wide across her face.

None of the other kids seemed at any point to be interested in the music - but Immy was - she didn't dance to all the songs, only those she obviously loved - she got so much joy out of being able to express herself - it was certainly joyful to see - for too soon the world starts to try and make us conform, I hope she continues to keep dancing when she feels like it - long after the world thinks she should stop.

Monday, September 14, 2009

To Move Or Not To Move

Two of my children have for more than a while been prompting hubby and I to move into a new area and a new home. Yesterday we went looking at display homes with my eldest daughter, her hubby and my little munchkin.

Yes we saw some homes we liked, but the whole question of moving causes me anxiety.

1. There is the actual move itself - I have lived in this house for 32 years this month - I have 32 years of stuff in this house - can you imagine packing all that up and then unpacking at the other end.

2. This has been our family home - apart from about 5 months before we moved here - my memories - both good and bad are in this house, how do you leave that behind.

3. I hope to retire in the next 2 years - I don't really want to take on a big mortgage this close to that happening.

4. Yes our suburb is not the flashest - but I know where everything is, I can drive home without thinking.

5. One of my daughters and eldest grand-daughter live only streets away.

6. What is to say that moving to a new area will be better, you can't control who your neighbours are, can you?

Yes there are things about this house and this neighbourhood and lets face it some neighbours in particular that drive me insane. But I love my house and back yard and the memories. I love the climbing rose outside my study window. I love the fact we have a backyard always full of birds and we have a big tree. My essence is in this house - I don't think my family understand that. Yes I am always resistant to change, I admit I like my comfort zone, am I ready to move on yet. I don't know.

The alternative is to spend money on this house and make it exactly as I want - a remodelling of the living area - a new outside area, a new bathroom - I could do all this for much less than the mortgage we would have if we moved. Yes I would still have the crappy neighbours - but at least I know how to ignore them.

So should I just throw it all the winds and take the leap? Do I really want to do that, and do I have the courage to, if I do want to.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Moments In Time - My Second Born - A Series of Oops

Oops I did it again - got pregnant that is.

I was still technically married to your older sister's Dad although we hadn't been together for quite a while. Hadn't technically been going out with your Dad for that long either - although we had known each other as friends for a fair time before our 1st official date. Didn't really plan on it happening either - your conception that is - not loving your Dad - I sort of knew that from when I first met him - knew that we would be together forever - he is that special.

You can skip this bit if you want - but it is part of the story.

You were conceived on a night that your Dad came over for dinner, still early in our 'relationship' and lets just say dinner was not the only thing he and I shared that night. Because neither of us thought it would happen, we got caught up in the moment and didn't think 'long term'. Oops.
Who would have thought I would get pregnant that easily - well later I would know that was the case, but really - the first time??

So I went to the Dr and asked to go on the pill, and told your Dad 'safe sex' had to happen until I could start taking the pill - the Dr had told me to wait until I got my next period (I know TMI) - and so I waited, and waited, and waited.

Did I think I could be pregnant - no, I had no symptoms and as I said who gets pregnant the one and only time you have unprotected sex - oops that would be me!

Dad and I kept dating, kept falling further in love, all scarily fast. One day I woke up and thought 'hang on, I have been waiting for 'you know what' (is that better?) for a few months and I know that is not unusual for my body - but 'what if?'.

So I talked it over with a friend of mine who said well go and have a test - now in those days you didn't have the home pregnancy test, you had to go and wee in a jar and then wait at least 24 hours for the results. And so I waited, I didn't say anything to your Dad, after all I was sure it would be negative - did I say how I had no symptoms. Oops, I was wrong.

So dilemma time came, what was I to do, would your Dad hang around - I knew he was the one for me, but did he feel the same, should I terminate, should I talk to someone and find out my options. Now back then abortion was not an easy thing to make happen, but it was an option if you knew the right doctor to go to - but abortion is not something I have ever been comfortable with - I mean to me it is not right to take a life because it is inconvenient - but then, what if your Dad walked away - my first husband had - could I be a Mum to 2 children on my own?

My friend said 'Well at least find out if termination is an option' and so I went and talked to another Dr who told me all about the options and to go away and think about it. So I did, I thought long and hard and while all this was happening your Dad had a 2nd thought's moment and told me things were moving too fast (if only he had known just how fast). And so I told him to go - after all, this had happened to me before and that relationship didn't last. I also realised that weekend that you were here to stay - there was no way I was letting you go.

Within 48 hours your Dad was back in our lives - but I still didn't tell him about you. Only I knew (and 1 friend) that you existed, I needed to keep you a secret for a while longer while I got the courage to tell everyone. I knew some people in my life would be unhappy and disappointed that I was again to be an unwed mother, I still wasn't sure how your Dad would react - but I was content with my decision - you were definitely part of my life.

Eventually I got the courage and told your Dad - and my family - and your sister. Dad handled it really well, was even excited - the family - well some took it better than others - your sister was over the moon.
Dad moved in, we put the nay-sayers out of our minds, and we made a life together, full of love and happiness. Didn't really matter what the rest of the world thought, we knew we were in this for the long haul (and 33 years later we are still here and still happy - so I guess we did know best).

Eventually it was time for you to be born, I was huge as a house, and just like your sister - you went over your due date and so the Dr decided to induce you. I went to hospital the night before and Dad and you sister went to stay with
Mimsie so that she could look after C when your Dad came back to the hospital in the morning.

Well you had other plans and I woke up at about 3.30 am and rolled over in bed and thought - oops - I had wet the bed - not a lot just a little. So rolled over again and thought - oops a little more - um maybe my waters have broken? So I laid there a little longer (I was in a shared room and didn't want to walk the other lady up) - no contractions - so I rolled over again and yep a little more wetting the bed. So I rang the nurse and they took me down to the labour ward. Still no contractions but they agreed that my waters had broken high up and so only little amounts were making there way past you (

I asked them to ring Dad - they said 'oh let him sleep you will be hours yet" - but I somehow knew that wouldn't be the case. Eventually contractions started - really close together - not slow and steady but fast and frantic - and I again asked them to ring your Dad and they said 'oh you have hours yet'. Yeah right - what did they know.

I eventually got them to ring Dad - about 6.30 and he was on his way - but so were you - I said time to push - and they said 'oh you have hours yet'
- Oops they got it wrong.

I said I don't think so and so someone looked and then then - hello - I think this baby is coming now. And so we rush to the delivery room, and they keep saying hold on the Drs not here yet.

And your Dad walks in the door and they ask 'are you the Dr' and he says no - goes pale and sweaty and comes over to me. I take one look at him - know he is going to faint and say - go outside and wait. The Dr rushes in just as you are born at 7.25 am - quick, I knew it was going to be.

Poor Dad in the meantime is waiting outside in the father's room, they had them in those days, wondering if everything is okay as he knew I was close to having the baby and no one has come and got him. Must have been about 20 mins later before someone says has anyone told the Dad. Oops poor Dad. He comes back and there you are all wrapped up, with your cute little head with lots of hair popping out the top of the swaddling. He was beaming with pride and couldn't wait to ring everyone and give them the news that we had another beautiful daughter.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

The Perfect Mum - Is It A Goal You Can Ever Achieve

I worry that this generation of Mums are trying to achieve perfection. My daughter has a blog (well worth a visit - especially if you have young children) and she has connected through the blog world to lots of other Mums.

I have done a bit of blog surfing and I find what appears to be a lot of stress and worry about doing everything right - about achieving perfection as a mother.

I don't believe that anyone can be or is perfect, I do believe we should try and be good and just parents, that we should love our children above everything else - and that includes ourselves. I believe that we should make sacrifices to make our children's lives better - but I don't believe we should give them everything all the time as this then sets them up with false expectations of the world.

Is it that there is now too much information out there for parents - there didn't seem enough when my children were little, but now there is so much conflicting information.

I know when my youngest grand-daughter was born, my daughter had 2 or 3 books and I saw the anguish she went through trying to get it right for her newborn daughter - because she had colic - one book said one thing, the other said another and so on - my advice was choose one and throw the others away.

I was 17 when I had my first child - there were no books, I had my Mum for advice or I worked it out myself. I don't think I did a bad job, and in fact, I think I had a lot less stress as my attitude was I would learn as we (my daughter and I) went along the motherhood/childhood road - I think we did okay. She has turned out to be a wonderful adult. Same with my other 3 children, yes we had some issues a couple of times and turned to professionals to help us get through those times - and that was stressful - as you are suddenly relying on others opinions and not your own.

Yes we all want the best for our child, and we all want our children to be the best they can in life - but can we set the bar too high - not only for them but for ourselves?

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Moments In Time - The Baby I Never Got To Know

Many years ago when I was still married to my eldest daughter's father, I had a fall on some slippery grass while carrying a heavy load of washing out to the line - I fell awkwardly and really jolted myself. I sat there for a while in shock, then got up, put the washing back in the basket and then hung it on the line. Didn't think much more about it at the time, just that I was a little sore and really glad no-one had seen me stack it.

Next morning, my husband went off to a training course, I got up and got my daughter out of bed, gave her breakfast and dressed her, hopped into the shower and then doubled up in the most severe pain I had ever had. It came on that suddenly, wave after wave of abdominal pain - I had no idea what was happening but didn't think it could be good. I then noticed I was bleeding so knew it wasn't my appendix. But this was way too much pain for anything normal. I somehow managed to get myself dressed, all the while reassuring my nearly 2 year old daughter that all was fine.

I rang the local doctor's office to see if I could have a home visit as I didn't have a car and there was no way I could walk to his office which was over 5 kms away. He couldn't come until lunch time, so I waited, waves and waves of pain continuing to wash over me. When he came he asked me if I could be pregnant, well it was a possibility but not something we had planned. Long story short I was and I was miscarrying. I couldn't get hold of my hubby as in those days mobile phones were not invented, so I rang my Mum to take me to hospital and to then look after my daughter.

I lost this little baby that I didn't even know existed, I didn't know if it was a boy or a girl, but before I could even say hello, it was taken from me. I would have been somewhere around 12-14 weeks pregnant, I had no symptoms and never had a chance to get excited about this little ones birth. I felt bewildered, sad and lost - it was too soon to mourn as I never had known my baby was part of me until it was taken away - but I did wonder in the weeks and months that followed who my baby would have been and did the fall the day before take my little angel away. I told myself that this was the way it was meant to be as I believe miscarriages happen for a reason.

But even today,
every now and then, I do sit and wonder how my life would have been different with that little one in my life. I like to believe that my little angel has come back to me as one of my other children or one of my grand-daughters - how wonderful if that was the case. These memories don't come often any more but every now and then they reappear.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Moments In Time - The Reason Why

Recently we learned of the death of 2 men - 1 a friend of ours and 1 a friend of my middle daughter - both were around my age. We never know how long our journey will be and so I thought it was time I wrote down some memories and thoughts so that my grand-daughters (and even my children) knew what I felt at certain times in my life. There is no rhyme nor reason to which ones comes when, although the ones about the week in August and my eldest grand-daughter's birth were relevant to dates and what memories they stirred up in me at the time.

Many years ago before her death my grandmother wrote a book about her life called The Clock of Time. I don't think I will ever get that done, but nonetheless it may be that sometime in the future one of my grandchildren asks a question about their grandma - hopefully these small snippets will help them and others to know me more fully - especially if I am no longer here.

My grandmother's book ends with the following verse - not hers and she does not quote the author

The clock of life is wound but once
And no man knows when the hands will stop
At late or early hour
Now is the only time we own
Live, love and work with a will;
Place no faith in tomorrow
For the hands may then be still.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Now A Teenager

Today is C's 13th birthday - happy birthday my precious chicken, growing up so fast. I am so proud of the way you keep positive with all you have to struggle with, my heart swells with pride at who you are - the most caring and loving person I think I have ever met. Having you in my life makes my life worthwhile - I love you to the moon and back, to the universe and beyond. xxx

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Moments in Time - My First Grandchild

Dear C

I remember so clearly the day your Mum came and told us she was pregnant - she had not long been living away from home, she was just 18 and she bought her best friend with her for support. Somehow I knew what she was coming to tell us. I think she was worried we would be angry - but how could I be angry, I had my first child at 17 - why would I cast stones. Did I worry about her being a young Mum - of course I did, it is not an easy road, but then being a parent at any age is a challenge.

Not long after the big news, we found out that your Mum was going to be a single mum - your Dad was not going to be part of the journey. I knew that it would be okay as your Mum is a survivor and she would do the best she could even though she was on her own.

Your Mum moved back in with us a few months before you were born and we got to see first hand how her tummy swelled, we got to talk to her about the doctors visits and I got to go the ultrasound when you were just 18 weeks old - how excited I was to see you moving about with all the boxes ticked to show you were healthy and well.

I got to help Mum chose your clothes, pram and car seat - we got your crib and had fun getting it all ready for when you arrived.

We got to talk with your Mum while she chose names - Lachlan James was going to be your name if you were a boy - and a boy is what we thought you were going to be - the Dr had told your Mum he thought she was having a boy following one of the ultrasounds he did in his surgery about 6 weeks before you were born. And so I would rub your Mum's tummy and talk to you and call you Lachlan - I wanted you to know your name and how much you were loved even before you were born.

Your Mum and I went to 'birth classes' together as I was going to be Mum's 'birth partner' - I was so excited as I had never been involved in someone else giving birth - and it is not the same as when you do it yourself.

Mum got bigger and bigger and then her feet began to swell with fluid and I was worried that her kidneys were not coping, but the Dr kept saying all was okay - which really wasn't totally true.

Your due date came and went and your Mum got bigger and so they decided to induce you. I took Mum to hospital the night before you were born and was to come back in the morning to be there for the birth. I arrived at the hospital at 8 o'clock and was so excited when I was walking in to see your Mum - today was the day that we were going to meet. The drugs they used on Mum worked really fast and she was already in labour when I got there - but they also did something strange to your Mum and she kept lapsing in and out of consciousness - I was so worried that something was really wrong - and the nurses didn't know what was happening either, so they stopped the drugs - but your Mum still was only semi conscious most of the time.

The doctor arrived around 11.30 to check Mum out as the nurses had rung him and your Mum managed to say 'I want to push' and of course the Dr said 'No you don't'. Then he checked and said 'Oh yes she does' and so we all rushed around to the delivery room, nurses and Dr and me pushing your Mum's bed, whizzing past other people walking down the corridors.

We somehow managed to get your Mum from her bed onto the delivery bed and then the Dr was saying 'Push' and your Mum was still not fully conscious and then the Dr said 'OK I need forceps' and suddenly your Mum roused herself and said 'I can do this' and she did - with just a little help from the vacuum to get you out the last little bit.

I felt like I was going to burst, I was so excited and then the Dr said 'Oh I made a mistake' and thought he had done something wrong with Mum or you and then he said 'Its a girl' and I laughed - I was so relived that there was nothing really wrong, just that he thought you were a boy. Mum and I cried when we saw you - Mum could hardly hold you as she was still so spaced out from the drugs, and you have some very hearty cries to let us know you were here.

I got to cut your cord and see you weighed while the Dr and nurses looked after your Mum - I got to cuddle you close while your Mum whispered your name to you - luckily she had a girl's name picked out too. I got to give you your first bath while Mum was recovering - they wouldn't let her out of bed in case she fainted.

Words can not express the love I felt for you on this special day - I knew that we would be bonded for eternity - you are my precious chicken and no matter how old you get - I will always love you to the moon and back - and just know that nothing will ever be able to change that.



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