Friday, July 31, 2009
Monday, July 27, 2009
Saturday, July 25, 2009
Friday, July 24, 2009
Thursday, July 23, 2009
We are back in the land of the living – but barely! And it all began after Harrison and I hitched our wagon to Tone’s Brisbane work trip for 6 days. Oh yes, its all fun and games going away until someone gets sick. Or in this case, some-three-people end up ill. But, such is the matter made from myths and legends, that parents, like the great Phoenix, we rise from our ailing ashes and amble on!
Take for instance this past Tuesday. Its 5.55am in Brisbane, my alarm springs to life signalling this day must begin. Which is fine except only a few hours back I was getting rather personally acquainted with the bathroom tiles and toilet bowl. Which (without spelling it out further) signifies a mammoth lack of sleep and a matching cold and tummy bug to boot. No problem, except I am due on a plane in 2 hours and have to get packed up, checked out and to the airport, all with sick son and husband who is also not running at 100%.
The son, being unwell, naturally does not wish to be fed his breakfast in the car en route to airport. Mummy, also being unwell, naturally does not have energy to fight, instead indulges in some slight cursing under her breath at the timing of this illness. Daddy, in the front, and safely away from the commotion in the back seat, wisely offers choice words of comfort to wife and child before zooming off down the Coast to work (read play golf).
So, then, picture this. 5 foot tall mum, barely able to stand straight with fear of retching, has 10kg son strapped to self in Baby Bjorn Carrier. With free hands she pushes 7kg pram and 10kg luggage, with nappy bag barely shrugged on to her shoulder, negotiating oncoming traffic and fellow passengers, and all the while acutely aware her plane will board at any time. Oh the joys of the cold war, a battle fought on many fronts…
Check in done, we approach the treacherous security station. Now, in Sydney its insisted that you remove the Baby Bjorn Carrier from your self and allow it to be X-rayed, because, oh, I don’t know, its an obvious place to conceal a weapon?! Give me strength! Anyhow, dutifully, I commence laborious movements and untangle myself from various hand luggage and son only to then be told by Guard “in Queensland, we don’t make mothers do this”. Helpful yes, BUT PERHAPS ABOUT FIVE MINUTES EARLIER, when you were standing there watching me painstakingly remove this device that on a good day I need a university degree to work out how to use!
None the less, we arrive at the Gate where I heave myself and Harrison towards the criminally cheerful attendant, wondering whether I have time to get a piece of toast to feed my supposedly famished son. “Sure” she says, all smiles “10 minutes til boarding”. But of course, moments from dragging my feet to the food queue, they call our flight to board, asking for people travelling with Children to take first preference. I sigh and readjust my ever increasingly heavy son; toast will have to wait.
On board and all is settled. We’ve unpacked all our required bag of tricks for the 90 min flight and I’m gratefully resting my head on my beautiful boys soft skin. That is, until a slight commotion breaks out in the aisle near me. Apparently someone has sat in the wrong allocated seat. Boarding Passes are being checked. I almost shake my head in pity at the silly person who has done this.
Apparently that silly person was me.
So there we go again, me mustering my invisible well of strength and scooping up all our goods and dumping then unceremoniously in the seat in front. I then spend the next 90 minutes both remembering to breathe and holding my breath all at once. The sick bag is being constantly kept within reach, but gratefully not needed to be used.
You can be thankful for small mercies. The plane was on time, my boy was mostly well behaved (minus the smearing of half a blueberry muffin on to my lap) but come baggage collection time I was spent. With no energy left to even stand, I crouched down with the pretence of whispering something into my son’s ear, but all I was truly doing was storing some energy to try and now get all our worldly goods home.
But we made it. And after putting my son straight to bed, I collapsed in one giant crumpled heap on the lounge room floor, relief flooding through me we'd made it this far, relatively intact! And, despite the fact later that afternoon I rang my husband tearfully telling him that my wallet had been stolen (it was in fact sitting on the dining room table, a minor detail I noticed AFTER I cancelled my debit card) and almost crashed the car when parking in our garage (mental note, keep applying break, don’t for some reason switch to accelerator when brick wall is approaching) we have survived to tell the tale.
Murphy’s Law will have it that we’ll no doubt continue to be on the battering end of more foul colds before this year is out. There has been 5 in 9 months at last count for me alone, and all at a time when I can LEAST afford to be sick. There is no languishing in my sick bed, sleeping away what ails me or dozing in front of bad daytime TV. No, instead life must go on as my boss (Harrison) insists that sick leave was not a part of my contract when we negotiated our terms of agreement. Certainly its fine for him to be ill and have me tend to his varied ailments (we’d agreed that upfront and signed it off) but for some reason he’s not so sure about Mummy taking time out to tend to her own wounds inflicted in this oh so cold war…
Wednesday, July 15, 2009
Tuesday, July 14, 2009
In fact, pain is not a strong enough word.
Perhaps I’ll paint you a picture instead: a 100kg man kicking you repeatedly in the family jewels (say for oh, 9 hours) with steel capped boots, whilst someone else whacks you continually in the lower abdomen and back with a baseball bat that has been roasted in an open fire. All with the aim of passing a 4kg watermelon with a supposed smile on your dial.
We’ll see then if you’ll be requesting some strong pain relief. My bet is you’ll be begging for mercy!
So how dare you?! Only a male (and therefore incapable of ever knowing the excruciating pain that is childbirth) could advocate something so preposterous!! Leading up to my own labour experience, I did all the right “drug free” preparations. Yes, that included forking out $300 and 5 Thursday nights of my free time for the privilege of attending a “Calmbirth Class”.
AN ACTUAL MOTHER!
Monday, July 13, 2009
I don’t know if it’s an icy fist of fear that is clenched around my heart or the cold hard excitement of having a few hours to myself on a weekday that is making me feel this way. You see, tomorrow is D-Day: Harrison’s first day at Daycare. The one part of me is eager for this next chapter of my life to unfold; that I will be back contributing a part me to the world that does not revolve around all things baby. The other part (more dominant at present with the event looming large) is wondering how on earth I am going to walk away from my beloved beautiful little boy and leave him (no doubt in tears) with a bunch of veritable strangers? It almost feels criminal, akin to abandonment. Harrison, how do I explain thee???? “Sorry, but Mummy is going a little brain dead and feels like life has morphed into some sort of Groundhog Day. You don’t mind if she leaves you in the care of complete strangers while she tries to patch up a personal void in her life?” So here is what I keep rationalising, in order to keep me sane.
- He is not the first child to be left in DayCare, and he wont be the last. Hell, even my nephew who cried for the first year of being dropped off eventually got over to enjoy his time out from Mummy.
- Socially, this is where little kids get the opportunity to flourish. At home, I cannot guarantee him three days week of group interaction. And as he adores other kids and has a habit to smile and offer baby chitchat to complete strangers in the supermarket, I imagine he will be relishing the social aspect in no time at all.
- Arts and Crafts in my house? No thank you. I live in a unit and have barely the space to keep his toys in some sort of orderly area. Plus I am a (semi-reformed) neat freak and the idea of finger painting in my own home leaves a chill down my perfectionist spine. I’d happily participate in someone else home, mind you… just not my own!
- It also comes down to the fact that I really have no choice. Barring a lotto windfall to pay off the mortgage, it seems I should re-commence contributing to that once more. Plus the selfish part of me wants to buy clothes again. Nice clothes. The novelty of donning only comfy attire 7 days a week has finally worn off. Time to bring out the heels and handbags again people!
But yes, as much as I talk it up, I know I’ll be no doubt paralysed by tears and fears as I make the slow walk back to the car come 9am tomorrow morning. I’ll do my best not to hide behind a disguise of sunglasses and a magazine in the park across the road…
Saturday, July 11, 2009
We got ourselves a good first glance through the window of a whole new livewire wide world today: the arena that is children's birthday parties.
- Fruit is superfluous. Yes, do the honourable host thing, plate it up and put it out, but don't be disappointed if you clear the table at the end of festivities and find its all there, completely untouched. Why on earth would a 3 year old munch away on a piece of banana when there is fairy bread on offer? I am an adult (who therefore should know better) and I too thumbed my nose at the healthy selections in favour of the sausage rolls.
- You ought to also best steer clear of noisy, novelty horns, no matter even if they come with the complete Thomas The Tank Engine Party Pack. Not only do they damage the hearing of everyone in the vicinity, but they can also prevent an 11 month old baby from sleeping, (but hey, that's to be expected at a kid's party I suppose!)
- Someone will always get hurt. In this case it was the birthday boy, smacked in the head by an errant plastic golf ball unfortunately shanked by his now shattered uncle Tone. Honestly, I don’t know who felt worse, Logan with his red welt rising immediately on his forehead, or Tone, ruefully lamenting the freak moment which saw the ball somehow swing his nephew's way. Tears will abound!
- Without a doubt, you will ALWAYS provide too much food, thus ensuring you will be forced to feed on popcorn and party sausage rolls for a week and your child will be sent to day-care brandishing treats to distribute to all for at least three days running.
- Who needs fancy party games when there is a treasure trove of new toys to be shared around? The little lads whizzed around the backyard creating a roller derby with miscellaneous trucks, whipping up the sand-pit in a tyre squealing frenzy, while the girls (of which there were only a few), were happy to indulge in bit of face painting here, a couple of trucks "being friends" there....
- Got yourself a catnapper like me? Then let me be the first to confirm, after a morning soaking up the atmosphere of fun, your sweet child will then blissfully sleep the whole afternoon away so soundly you’ll suspect someone must have slipped something into his slice of birthday cake! Harrison was just in his element, trying to keep up with the big kids! That's when he wasn't eating grass, mind you... Or being pushed (far too fast, in my opinion) on the swing by his daredevil Poppy...
- Also, when the mother of the birthday boy happens to be 33wks preggers, perhaps its best to re-consider even having a party after all. If ever an early onset of labour were to eventuate, it would be now. Thank Goodness then for sourcing a team of helpers to halve the load! Daddy, Nanny, Poppy, Uncle, Aunty – and even the next door neighbours – all are a must.
Friday, July 10, 2009
This one goes out to my Little Logie Bear, my gorgeous nephew who turned 3 today. How time has flown, my precious boy! To think, 3 years ago we marvelled at the wonder that was you, soft skin, pink with nubile newness, those wide eyes gazing out at the world framed with your luscious, long lashes. And now you have blossomed into a little man, with the cheekiest of all eyebrows and grins, and a nature so inherently soft and loving (despite the odd road bump on the way to the “naughty chair”) who truly cherishes those he loves. Before you came along, never could I have imagined loving a child as I do you – I guess it’s the special bond we share seeing as though I was there to help welcome you into the world. And now I know first hand what that sort of deep love is like, with my own little Harrison. He adores his big cousin (bossy or not!) as much as we do.
Happy birthday Logan James, we love you xxx
Thursday, July 9, 2009
Wednesday, July 8, 2009
Monday, July 6, 2009
Sadly this kind of purely selfish behaviour now is no longer to be tolerated. My son has seen to that. If I am eating a Chicken salad sandwich then he wants to be eating it too. Similarly it could be any type of food, including ones not designed to be digested by his little tummy, but if I am caught putting hand to mouth then you can be sure he’ll come clambering over with the sole intention of sharing in the delicacy on offer.
And he is getting greedier (if I can be forgiven for using that word on my precious boy!) Saturday for instance we lunched at Taren Point, a farewell for friends leaving, and I did happily oblige in sharing my hot chips with Harrison. The problem arose however when I proceeded to break off a tiny amount for him to chew on. He swatted my hand away and lunged for the other hand, which was still holding the far more sizeable chunk of chip. I fear the split between sharing is no longer 80% - %20 but moving at an ever increasing speed of 50% - 50%!
And it’s not just me who has to hand over half my food. On particular morning teatime at Playgroup, a sweet little girl was happily chewing away on her mushy pear. Sensing something sweet on offer, my son came crawling at high speed from the complete other end of the room and invited himself up on to the unsuspecting mum’s lap, mouth rounded in anticipation like a little sparrow awaiting its first meal! At least he has a healthy attitude towards food, I hear you say. I couldn’t agree more and am very grateful for that. It’s just that no one should get between my vegemite on toast and me. Not even you George Clooney and now, that means you too, Harrison Webeck!