Sunday, September 30, 2007

Three in the bed and the little one said, "Shut up! I'm trying to sleep here!"

First up (before I get to why the title of this blog is what it is)... I have TWO ambidextrous children! I am ambidextrous myself, though, yes, I do (out of habit) choose to write with my right hand. My mum is ambidextrous as well, I think. Dave is a left hander, but not a true leftie (for example he uses a knife and fork like most right handed people, as does his mum, but his dad is a true leftie)...

Anyway, I discovered the other week that Erik is ambidextrous when one day he showed me that he can write just as clearly with both hands... And then yesterday Luey did the same. Here you can see him writing a story with a blue and a red crayon.

As you can see, he wrote all the red letters with his right hand, and all the blue letters with his left hand (and can I just say, for a six year old BOY, he has quite neat writing, in fact, his writing is neater than mine was when I was 7 or 8!)... So, who knew, but there you go! Now, to be fair, like me, both the boys do mostly choose to write with their right hands...

So now onto the title of this blog! Below you will see Bryn sitting on a bed... Not just any bed, but rather the lower bunk of Erik and Luey's Bunker's bed. This is now better known as "Bryn's Bed!" (complete with high pitched exclamation and much clapping - his!)...

The three boys now have a bed each in their tiny little room, and they're ALL delighted! Tonight is Bryn's first night in the bed, and basically I fed him to sleep in the loungeroom and then popped him in his bed, and when he wakes he will either stay in his bed or come into our bed, but basically, this is the start of the transition to the "boys' room".

Erik and Luey cleared four cubbies from their Ikea shelves (consisting of 16 squares), so he could put some of his toys in there as well, and then on top of the shelves (at the head of his toddler bed section) is the crate with the Thomas set, and the crate with the Duplo, which as now considered primarily his property (but all the boys share, of course)...

He was super excited about finally being part of the mystery behind the big white door with the boys' names on it (I need to find a place that sells small letters to stick on bedroom doors, I can only find big letters, and I'm not up for buying 12 of them at $8 a pop, eek!)...

So, there was much excitement in the Bird's Nest today!

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Messages...

Ok, for the next little bit, I'm going to sound like the lovely, but disturbed protagonist in the Aussie move, "Angel Baby"...

I've been getting messages about me for the past few days...

These messages have come from different sources but they all say very similar things...

I'm very fortunate (in a luck sense), things go my way.
I'm powerful and am learning to manage my power without being offensive to others.
I'm in tune with what the Universe is about and wants for me.
I'm going places, I'll be successful in whatever I do.
I'm a teacher.
I'm a healer.
I need freedom and autonomy.
I'm compassionate and a nurturer.
I make things happen, am an agent of change.

These same messages have been presented to me in various different ways but all seem to say the same things over and over, as if I'm needing to pay attention (or as if I'm too thick to get it)...

So, now I'm saying, yes, I hear you! Everything in my life, all my little worries and concerns are going to work out. It's going to be ok. The kids will be ok. Dave and I will be ok. My book will be ok. And yes, I will teach and heal people as I've been coming to realise I need to...

I get it now...

At the risk of being completely BORING...

Well, this is my blog, so suck it up...

Dave and I talked again last night. It wasn't good. Well, not to begin with anyway. He reitterated that his feelings really hadn't changed since August, and well I hadn't listened then (because I went and got the Agender plan)... He still wasn't saying no though, but he was clear that this wasn't something he'd choose.

Gawd, I was really upset, but kept it under wraps, at least until he went down the street to get fish and chips for us (boys all in bed), and a little bag of lollies for me - yeah, yeah, I know this doesn't do my weightloss efforts any good, but there you go...

He came back, we ate, we talked some more, and basically came to the place where he doesn't really want any more kids, but doesn't want me to be miserable, and I really do want another one (to try for a girl) but don't want to make him miserable.

I think he was waiting for me to be the martyr and say, "Ok, I'm deciding we won't do this because you don't want to." So, right before bed, I asked him if I should continue bothering to chart my temps, or stop, or keep doing it for now until he makes up his mind because I'm not going to be the martyr and I'm not going to push him to do this, HE has to make the decision this time. He said to keep charting for now.

It's going to be his decision, I'm going to accept whatever that decision is.

He did ask if I wouldn't talk to him for the next two years if he said no, and I said that while I really want this, we'd still be us. I showed him the blog from yesterday (he sometimes reads my blog himself but sometimes I just show him). We'll be ok, but I need him to make this decision this time. I don't want to push him into having #4 and I don't want to make it easy for him by making the decision not do it myself, yk? Does that make sense, or am I just manipulating him? I don't know anymore. I feel like I just need him to take the responsibility this time. I don't want him to say, years from now, "Well, you were the one who said our family was finished." for whatever reason (I can't think of a reason he'd say that, but you never know)...

He does have a time limit on him, in that we're supposed to get back to Cindy and Maree with our pH levels (in the next fortnight, though because we're not starting till Jan, that deadline is probably more flexible) and if we're doing this, he needs to be on supplement in a month's time.

So, there we are, and unless some breakthrough happens one way or the other, I'll try to blog about something else for a while...

Friday, September 28, 2007

Dave, this is how I feel about us...

Well...

Ok, I talked to Dave last night...

He didn't say yes.

He didn't say no, either.

He listened intently to the process at which I came to agender and what they'd said, and he said it was all very interesting. He was very affectionate, LOL, holding my hand and so on... He made jokes about winning the lotto so we could get a cleaner and a cook and a gardner and a cheffeur... He didn't say yes, and he didn't say no.

This morning I reminded him he hadn't given me an answer and he said he couldn't give me an answer because he'd just woken up...

I guess we can play this game of cat and mouse for a while longer, but sooon I need to know because if he says yes, I need to order the supplement for him and I believe it takes a number of weeks to be delivered.

I have to prepare myself for what I'll do if he says no.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Not so bounce bounce now that I've read my plan...

I was expecting to feel elated and jazzed when I read my plan, but instead I'm feeling kind of disappointed and dejected.

My mostly likely girl times go as follows:

24th of January - 2nd of February
21st of February - 27th of February

11th of June - 13th of June
9th of July - 13th of July - good for both Dave and myself wrt girl times

8th of September - 13th of September

All the months inbetween are not favourable for conceiving a girl.
So all the months except July, would be times when one of us is in strong girl territory and the other is neutral, I guess...

It seems though, that in the past, even when things have been favourable with regard to times; biorhythms and moon phases and the like, we've still managed to conceive boys. So, Cindy reckons a strong attempt is needed even when things seem favourable time wise.

Diet wise, there is a lot we can do. Dave needs to cut right back on caffeine, only one cup a day, that includes coffeine, tea, green tea and herbal teas. He can alternatively have a couple of decafs a day... He also needs to maximise dairy, but not chesse, and sugar (yay for him, he can have his fave yogurt and he can have sugar in his decafs)... He also need to exercise three times a week (will have to start walks for that one I think), and he has to have a hot bath before attempts, he'll like that, too!

My diet is far more restrictive. No caffeine, cut right back on any carbs, only strawberries, apples, pears and cranberries for fruit. Lots of milk and yogurt. Small amount of meat... But I only need to be on it for six to eight weeks...

Bah! The big problem is that my cycles are usually 27 days long, and if this continues to be the case then I'll be all out for these dates anyway...

I don't know, all of a sudden it seems so hard, like I'm fighting the Universe to make this happen. I mean, for crying out loud, if my cycle hadn't been only three weeks long 5 weeks ago, I'd be right...

And first I have to convince Dave. This morning he totally didn't want to talk about it again, which makes me think he's going to say no. And if saying yes means lots of planning and organising etc. then why wouildn't he say no?

Argh! I feel like I'm standing at the bottom of a massive mountain that I have climb NOW, and I've only had 2 hours sleep... (not literally, in fact, I had almost 12 hours sleep, but figuratively, I'm not sure if I have what it takes to "make this happen" as two psychics said I would...)...

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

*BOUNCE* *BOUNCE*...

Ok, didn't feel so bouncy this morning when I woke up. Felt quite stressed really, as did Jayne. The MAP/BaBs meeting we'd had last week had gone so well that I had *STUPIDLY* suggested we do it through the holidays. I checked with the front office and they were cool with that, and so we were set to go. Only thing was, come this morning, I was all in a panick about how much I HAVEN'T done of my poetry assignment (that a I got an extension for last week), and how little cleaning I'd done now that the skip has arrive, and blah, blah, blah... Not to mention worrying how I'd go corralling the boys...

Try to organise to cancel the meet, especially when Jayne called and said she'd double booked herself as well, but it wasn't going to happen, so we both ended up going, LOL, and in the end there were only four of us there with Amanda and Deb as well.

The boys kept me on my toes, and as a result Erik and Luey are having an early night tonight, but for a few minutes, Erik was heading to bed without dinner AGAIN, and facing the prospect of spending all afternoon in his room (something he probably would have preferred in light of how much cleaning I had both him and Luey do with me instead)...

Jayne graciously gave us a lift home, despite being rushed herself, and we had lunch and then got stuck into some cleaning. Gosh, spent two hours cleaning and have barely scratched the surface of the livingroom/dining room. I swear our floor needs to be soaked in a hot tub before we can even think to wash it! This is primarly thanks to Bryn's sultana tossing game... Squished sultanas are sticky buggars, and then when they dry they're like cement...

So, after a couple of hours cleaning on a lunch of salad and salmon (check out my weightloss blog to see how else I'm torturing myself during the holidays), I've just put ABC kids on for the gremlins and have collapsed in front of the laptop.

Checked my inbox and WHOO HOO!!! An email from Cindy at Agender!!! No, no, it's not my plan, but it was an email clarifying some stuff because SHE'S WORKING ON MY PLAN RIGHT NOW!

Oooh ooh ooh, I'm so excited. Not least because I *think* someone went through the entire gender swapers thread sequences and discovered that only 1 out of 30 attempts didn't get the gender of their choice... 29/30, that's like 96.6% positive results... That's pretty good...

Monday, September 24, 2007

Spring School Holidays...

It's like being thrust back 12 months... Back to the dark old days of trying to cope with homeschooling three kids...

I had plans of doing things differently this time, but I don't know if it's going to happen. We don't have any money for one... I've got so much stuff to do for another... But I've got to figure something out because another day like today can't happen...

The boys went out to play this morning and were in the back yard, and that was fine. They came in for a bit, and then went out again. I was constantly checking on them, because, well they are my kids and I know them quite well, LOL... Had to keep an eye out for what they thought was suitable to take outside in the way of toys...

They went out again and were kicking a ball around in the front yard, and it occurred to me that I might have to remind them not to chase the ball onto the road if it bounced out that way, so I got up and checked out the front window, and lo and behold, there they were IN THE MIDDLE FO THE ROAD playing kick-to-kick...

Yes, the neighbours did hear me as I yelled at them to come inside, and asked them in they were just stupid, or had a death wish... Yes, I'm a feral mama... My gods! I thought the two year old was getting to be a handful, these two are 6 and 8...

So, they spent the rest of afternoon inside.

For part of that they helped me tidy, after 45 minutes of their help (aka whinging, sniping, punching, pinching and hair pulling, none of which involved me, but did involve Bryn who is now learning a whole NEW set of social skills), I sent them to their room to "find something useful to do"...

I didn't get much done today at all. The skip arrived, and I used this as an opportunity to charge the atmosphere a bit, but hmmmm, it didn't actually work as well as I'd hoped by Bryn then decided he wanted to run around the flower beds for a while...

They look cute though, don't they?

Talking to Clel on the weekend, I do know they'll grow up and be fine. The likelihood of them growing up delinquent is probably very, very small. The chances of them surviving childhood despite their own lack of foresight, is still pretty significant. The question is, will I survive their childhood without becoming delinquent???

Only 13 days left of the holidays...

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Mercury and Saturn must be aligning with Myanus...

Gawd, I feel so out of it!

I have had a head cold this week, and that will do it, but I just don't feel myself - which is kinda funny in light of having "lost" my identity this week. I feel like I've entered some alternative Universe!

I realised this morning that, of course, I haven't participated on AB much at all for the past week because it's been all bunged up, as well as that I've been preoccupied with all things related to finding my identity again. Then there is the whole surreal pseudo-communication of Facebook, which I can't decide if I like or loathe... Yes, it's fun to catch up with old friends, and send strange and interesting pressies and quests to other people, but it's also just a huge and frivolous waste of time time and energy that I really can't afford. But being out of touch with friends and acquaintences for various other reasons has meant I've felt the need to participate on facebook in order to stay "in contact"...

Of course, the house feels a mess, and my studies are a mess, too. I have a major assignment due next Friday, and the boys will be on holidays this week, and in order to prevent them from killing each other, or me killing them, I've offered to have friends kids over as well. On top of this I've got the skip arriving tomorrow, so I'm going to need to clear out all the crap from the house in the next three days, and I have this head cold which is clouding everything up.

Today I have a tupperware party, pmsl! Coz, I really NEED to add one more thing to my schedule and I really NEED slapper wear!...

In all honesty I'm going because I get to get away from the house and the kids, and I get to see my friends before a week of, um, of, I don't know, ISOLATION...

And what have I not mentioned here for a few days...

Yes, haing another baby. I just hasn't been up there in my thoughts. I'm still waiting for my plan, and AF arrived at the *USUAL* time, so I guess that is good, but right now I can't think about having any MORE kids...

So, all in all I don't feel like myself...

ADDENDUM: Having come back from the Tupperware party, and having had 4 bubblies of various kinds, I suddenly feel more myself! It was weird actually, by the second drink my head started to clear and I could feel the old me in there, emerging. What on EARTH does that mean, anyway, that I find myself after a couple of drinks??? No, this is not how I usually "find myself", in fact, I've never felt out of myself like this before, so it's been a weird week all up!

Saturday, September 22, 2007

OMG! I found my highschool friends on Facebook!!!

I hadn't even thought to check, until Jayne told me she was contacted by someone from her past the other day! Now of course, because I've changed my name so much over the years, no would ever find me on facebook unless they knew what my latest (and final) incarnation was.

Anyway, I had this problem that I'd forgotten most all of my friends surnames, but I took a stab at one friend who's name I remembered because it was a bit unusual, and there she was, and in her contacts were my other friends!!!

Now, I wonder if they remember me, we're talking 20 years ago now!

I just can't believe it! I never thought I'd see these people ever again (even just as an image on the net), and there they are, living their lives on the other side of the globe!

Peace, Serenity, Order...

I really need to attract these thing right now... Especially with assignments and the holidays looming. We're supposed to be having a house inspection in the next fortnight as well. This week has been stressful, but the stress of it didn't really hit until Thursday night. I started having panick attacks at that time, and also started coming down with a head cold. Yesterday I somehow managed to hold things together, but today I'm feeling very scattered.

Was going to attempt a clean up of the house which has fallen into ruin in the past few months (much like my body, interestingly enough)... Instead, I'm going to the blessingway of a mum from BaBs. I'm totally not prepared for this today, but really do like this woman and want to support her at this time.

So, as I tried to rush around the house after deciding to go, and tried to clean up, and I was overwhelmed with a feeling of tiredness. Dave felt the same way and so when I called the Skip guy to find out if he would take away our fridge and other junk, Dave offered no resistence (a week ago he was totally against the idea of another skip)...

Every now and then get like this. I feel overwhelmed and I just need to re-establish peace, serenity and order. This is what made Dave so attractive to me. His entire family is about order - not necessarily peace and serenity, but certainly order.

I've definitely corrupted him over the years and he is a lot less ordered than he used to be, but he does say he is much more adept at thinking on his feet than he used to, and says that is as a direct result of being with me and having the kids - he sees it as a good thing, so that's good, too...

So, a skip is arriving on Monday and we can finally get rid of the futon and the boxes that have been taking up space on the enclosed back porch. The fridge in the front foyer will be gone, too. I'm also going to make Dave fix his study, and we're reordering the boys' room, and possibly switching the boys' room and the study over as well in prep. for Bryn moving in there.

We were talking about Bryn's toys in the loungeroom - he really doesn't play with most of them, and Dave was saying we should pack up this and that. Now "pack up" seemed like an acknowledgement of us possibly having another baby, but then he said we should get rid of a couple of other things, and that's more in the vein of "because Bryn is our last"... Don't know what to make of that. But not in the frame of mind to deal with it right now...

Friday, September 21, 2007

The choking thing with Erik...

Well, it's Friday today, the last day of term 3 at school, and unfortunately Dave had to come the heavy with Erik's teacher...

On Wednesday morning Dave approached Erik's teacher about the choking incident (Erik was choked by two boys because he went and stood between them and a girl they were picking on. Erik then went to tell a teacher's aid who was on yard duty, but the other boys got to her first and told her Erik had attack them, and Erik ended up being told off, while nothing happened to the other boys.)...

Dave said he wanted Erik's teacher to look into it, and he wanted the other two boys properly disciplined (whatever that meant)... On Thursday morning Dave talked to the teacher again and he hadn't done anything about it, so Dave reitterated what he thought the teacher should be doing; having a talk with the boys, and hoped to hear that the teacher had acted by Thursday afternoon...

Thursday afternoon (so, yesterday), I went to pick Erik and Luey up from school, and Erik's teacher tells me he spoke with Erik's friend, C, who Erik has said saw the choking, and C had said he didn't see anything. I asked if he had spoken with the other two boys (who were in the classroom next door to Erik's) and he said those two boys were in trouble nearly every day, and as he (the teacher) had given Erik a break on several occassions when Erik had not behaved according to school policies, he wanted to give the other two boys an equal "break". I said that didn't help Erik at all, that he had felt it was unfair that he was told off when they weren't, and the teacher said that Erik had "only" been told off by a teacher's aid, it hadn't gone to his class teacher or the VP or the Principal, and so it wasn't a real telling off. I said it felt real to Erik. The teacher said, he had told Erik that he (the teacher) believed him and that that should carry more weight than anything the teacher's aid had said.

Now, one would think, if the teacher believed him, about being CHOKED by two other students, the teacher would be moved enough to ask least ask the other boys what the story was!!!

Dave was NOT happy, to say the least, to hear what the teacher said yesterday, so AGAIN this morning approached the teacher and this time FIRMLY told the teacher that he was NOT happy with the inaction, and if nothing more was done about it today, he would be contacting the Prinicipal. This attracted a sudden chill from the teacher and he said he'd talk to the boys if he saw them while on yard duty at lunch time. Dave said that was not good enough considering the boys were right next door throughout the entire day and he'd be calling at lunch time to see what had taken place.

So, anyway, Dave rang at lunch time and the teacher said he'd talked to the other two boys and they had wholesale denied the entire incident, and that was that... End of story. They denied it and nothing more can be done...

Obviously, we're not done with this, so there will be another installment. We will be writing to the Principal to say we were not entirely satisfied that the teacher acted in Erik's best interest. That we feel there is inconsistency in discipline at the school (considering Luey saw the VP for digging up the class crab, but these boys were going to be allowed to choke Erik without so much as a wherefore?)...

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Yes, apparently it does happen!!!

Dave discovered a call from Burwood Police station on our messages this morning, and it seems someone had handed my wallet into the police there. So, I call them and whomever handed it in, found it and handed in COMPLETELY INTACT!!! Yep, even the money was in there!

I don't know what to make of it... I KNOW I left it in the shop, because I know I left the shop with only the drinks and snacks I bought, so I definitely didn't drop it outside. So, either, the guy who was served after me handed it into Burwood police, or the shopkeeper had a pang of conscience and did it himself...

Either way, whoo hoo!!!

I'm still heading into the city today to have my Keypass updated, because I think that has a been an important wake up call for me.

On a more spiritual level, I think something Leah said about having to fight to get my identity back really struck a cord... I think maybe the Universe is telling me it's time to completely let go of Claudette Michelle Yr Nason, and embrace Sif Anna Dal...

On Facebook last night, someone did a name analysis of my name for me (sorry, can't remember who it was right now), and even though this stuff is silly, it came back S = Strong, I = Imaginative, F = Friendly... Not bad, hey? Certainly attributes I would like to think I have! So time to fully embrace that and stop living in this no-woman's land of having two identities...

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Today's update on the case of the missing identity...

Ok, so after the worst night sleep I've had since night weaning Bryn - I actually thought I was going to have to get up to throw up at one point! - I dragged myself out of bed at 7am to print out some pages from my online account to prove I have access to it, and therefore must be the owner of the account, or someone who knows her really well! (and is therefore known to the owner so can be found in the event it's fraud, i.e. I'd have to be stupid to front up to the bank!!!)...

We tried to find our marriage certificate and the boys' birth certificates, but in Dave's hovel study, he could only find Erik and Luey's and his own birth certificates... So, after a couple of hours of stressing about what that might mean in my attempt to prove I'm me, we decided to cut out losses and just go to the police station.

Before we left, I called the Vic registry of births, deaths and marriages, and found out if I had a police report and a stat dec. and a medicare card (luckily Dave's is just like mine) and a bank statement in my name with my current address and bills in my name with my current address I could get my Change of Name certificate reproduced for $25.80. I could then take that to Keypass with my police report and stat dec. and pay $30 for a new Keypass in my new name. A Keypass card is like a license, so then I have primary ID, which I can then fax to the NSW registry and get my birth certificate with, and I can pay a bit more to have that expedited, so I could get that next week, which means I can then get my taxi directorate card (which is as important to me as my bank card!!!), and all my other ID.

With the valid Keypass in hand, I don't have to carry my change of name cert. or my birth cert. so, then if I lose my wallet or have it stolen again, I won't be back in this position.

Anyway, got to the police station, they said I had to put in a lost property report as it wasn't a clear cut case of theft, but that's ok, it's still a police report. The Constable who helped me was great! He was very understanding and respectful. As I was filling in the Stat. Dec. and waiting to get it sign, another constable thought she'd finish up for the first Constable, so she goes to take the Stat. Dec. to sign it, and asks me for ID. I say I don't have ID. that is why I'm getting a police report and a stat. dec, and she says, "Well, you need ID before I can sign this..."

You know that feeling, in the pit of your stomach, when the frustration and upset is churning and churning and you don't know if you're going to scream or cry or vomit..? Yep, it started to surge, but in the NICK OF TIME the other Constable stepped in and shooed the twit away, and said he had it all sorted, rofl! I could have hugged except for the security screen!

With police report and stat. dec. in hand we trotted off down to the bank. I was prepared to flood them with proof of me as being me, but as it turned out the lady on the phone last night was a big of a NONG! They had no issue whatsoever issuing me a new card because I knew my verbal password, which I'd told the lady over the phone last night! Besides that I had Dave there with his medicare card with me on it. AND get this, Bryn had obviously been in my wallet yesterday morning and removed my credit card and then hidden it under the dd player, because Dave found it there this morning, so even though I cancelled it last night, I had that as well...

So, I got a new card on the spot with them, AND they've organised for me to be sent a debit visa on the same account, which they've suggested I keep locked up somewhere at home as a back up card - what a fab idea! My faith in St. George has been restored!

So, tomorrow I'm off to the city to sort out my change of name and keypass bits and pieces, and also to get my travel pass updated in my new name (for consistency) and to get my pensioner concession card and new medicare card issued. I also have to let the library know that Dave's library card is out there somewhere, so no one runs up big fines on his card... And of course, I need to buy a new wallet and then try to organise my birth certificate from NSW... All up, replacing all this stuff is going to cost me well over $100 bucks...

Even though I'm absolutely sure that shop keeper took my wallet, I've got no one to blame but myself for walking away from it, and it's been a rather costly (emotionally and monetarily) lesson! But it has made me move my arse on getting my Keypass updated so I don't have to carry those other VIP(aper)s around in my wallet - which really wasn't the smartest move on my part anyway, all for the sake of saving $20 and a trip to the city...

Universe... Point taken!

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

The day I ceased to exist...

On paper that is.

I had my wallet stolen this afternoon. That is, I went into a milk bar to buy some water, took the water out to Jayne's car and we left, when for a drive, went to go through a drivethrough and then I realised I didn't have my wallet. I'd left it at the milkbar. So, we drove back to the milk bar and I went in and asked for my wallet, which I'd left on the counter right in front of the milk bar owner guy. He said I didn't leave it there. He said I must have left it in another shop. I suggested maybe the guy who had come into the shop after me might have taken it, but the owner said that guy just bought milk and didn't take my wallet. I thought it was funny that the guy was both certain I didn't leave it behind and certain the other guy didn't take it. I know I left it on the counter in plain view. So, I'm thinking the milk bar owner guy took it himself. The entire $60 in it...

The $60 doesn't bother me. Well, it does but not as much as losing my birth certificate, and my change of name certificate, and all my cards and other ID...

So, I called the National and cancelled my Visa and ordered a new card, and they offered me a second card, can you believe it? They asked if I wanted a back up card, and I said I didn't know I could get one, then the girl tells me yeah, it's no problem. She said I currently had $X limit on this account, but I could get a different limit if I wanted on the other one, i.e. a second credit card! I said thanks but no thanks I just dropped my limit and had no intention of having more credit again...

Anyway, no probs, a new cc will be in the mail next week.

So, then I ring St. George to cancel my bank account card. Sure, they do that, then they tell me I can go and pick up a new card in the morning, I just need to take my lisence with me. I say I don't have a lisence because I'm legally blind, so they suggest my birth certificate, but nope, that was in my wallet, so they suggest my passport, but that has lapsed, not to mention the fact it was in my own name and I don't have my change of name certificate because, well that was in my wallet, too...

The kind lady then informs me that until I can produce a primary form of identification I cannot be reissued a card... Ok, well because Dave has an identical medicare card to me, and I'm getting the National Credit Card next week, and I have the bills here in my name, I can take those (next week) to the Vic registry of births, deaths and marriages, and get my change of name certificate reissued.

I can then send a signed copy of that and photocopies of my medicare card, visa and bills to NSW, and apply for a birthcertificate. The change of name certificate will probably take about three weeks to get back to me, and the birth certificate itself will take another 3-6 weeks, so in about 2-3 MONTHS I should be able to get my St. George bank card...

How are Dave and I supposed to live for 2-3 months on 1/3 the income we have now?

Also, I managed to spill a cup of coke in my lap, and drench my mobile, so now that needs to be replaced as well. I've only had this last phone for two months.

In other good news, Erik was choked at school today. Apparently he told a teacher's aid, but the boys who were choking him got to her first and told her he'd kicked and punched them. No one had bothered to tell his class teacher.

I marched Erik and Luey and Bryn back up to Erik's classroom from the bus stop to get to the bottom of it all. The junior class teachers were having a meeting, and Luey's teacher spotted me and obviously thought I was there to see her and came out. I told her I was there to see Erik's teacher and she said he was chairing the meeting, so I told her Erik had been choked at school that day and I wanted to clear it up, and she got Erik's teacher.

Erik's teacher hadn't heard of the incident and we went through the protocol of checking the story out and seeing Erik had, indeed, attacked those other boys, and he said he hadn't. He said he's seen a preppie girl being bullied by these boys and he'd stepped in to help her by standing between her and the boys and loudly telling them to stop. Then they starting attacking him. Erik's teacher said he tended to believe Erik's version of this BECAUSE, usually when Erik does anything to another child, there are 30 kids waiting outside his door at the end of lunch telling on Erik, and today no one had said anything.

This just broke my heart!

So, the other kids at school are keen to dob on Erik but not dob on kids who hurt Erik... His teacher said he'd talk to the other kids tomorrow. Tonight, Erik has been a bit unsettled and has even sleep walked, so that's not good. He did pick up on my upset over the wallet though, too...

As if all that wasn't enough, our real estate agent rang this afternoon and left a message to say she wants to do an inspection some time in the next fortnight, yay!

And I'm going to have to ask for an extension on the assignment I have due on Friday because I'll be spending all day tomorrow running about trying to get cards and so on replaced. And I'm just not in the head space to be analysing Emily Dickinson poetry right now.

Hey, one GREAT thing happened today! A little boy named Archer was born to Pam and her dh, so Congrats to them!!! What a gorgeous Spring day to make his debut!

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Don't be an idiot!

For those of you who don't visit Alternativebaby regularly

This is what Bryn just said to Dave, I kid you not!



Bryn had just asked for a biscuit, but had mangled the word when he said it and asked for a "dibspit"



Dave said, "So, you want a dibspit do you?" and laughed...



Bryn nodded his head and say, "Yup"



So, Dave said it again for effect, "You sure you want a "DIBSPIT"?"



To which Bryn indignantly replied, "Don't be an idiot!"



Now, we think it was just a reflex, he's heard Dave and I say it to Erik and Luey at different times, and has probably figured out the context (when they're being very silly!), and so it's stored in there in his subconscious, only this time it reflexively just came out!



Dave and I just looked at each other in shock and burst out laughing!!!

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Little bits of loveliness...

Bryn running and calling Dave when the time on the stove went off, "Dadda, Dinna! Tasty Fisssshhhh!" (he really does love fish, and helped me finish mine when he'd scoffed his down).

Bryn recognising the Dr Who theme music and perking up (no, he doesn't usually watch it, he was just up late tonight, and yes, I shield his eyes for anything potentially not nice), declaring, "Doc Tor!", then he put his face right up against mine with his eyes popped right open and whispered something in baby-fairy-ese that was obviously TOP SECRET! Then giggled!

Took Luey to the library with me today, leaving Bryn at home with Erik and Dave - and Bryn was waving and smiling and say, "Byeee" even before I left. Was really nice to spend some time alone with my middle boy. I've found each boy is completely different when on their own. Well, not completely different, but somehow more themselves, less aware of competing for our attention. So, we went to the library, I needed books on Emily Dickinson, and he needed a book on "olden days clothes" so he can tell his class about them next week.

After the library we went and had an icecream together, then went and did shopping for dinner. In the cab on the way home Luey said, "Mum, you're a great mum!", I said, "Wow, thank you, what makes you say that?", he said, "You're really nice!", I asked, "But what about when I'm not nice?", and he said, "Even when you're not nice, you still like me!" Hahahaha, from the mouth of babes!

It must have been over two years since the last time Luey and I were out, just the two of us. I really need to spend more time alone with both the big boys - and I think they'd both benefit greatly from that!

Saturday blog (gawd I'm finding it hard to come up with titles these days...)

Here are my boys all together waiting for dinner to be served. Erik is reading one of his self-created books to the other two... It was one of those moment for family harmony that I just had to catch on, erm, well not film, obviously, let's say on my blog!

And here are Luey and Bryn sharing a icecube tray of sultanas! I'm forced to buy the plain old individual serving size boxes of sultanas for Bryn as he won't have a bar of the boys' "exotic" sultana and apple/pineapple/apricot mixes... I've tried taking out the offending "other" fruits, but he seems to feel the sultanas are badly enough contaminated from being in contact with the other dried fruits that he generally will only eat one or two before tossing the rest indignantly on the floor.

He didn't like having to fish them out of the little box either, was fine until he got deep into the box and then got rather frustrated with sultanas that was "stuck" as he put it, beyond the reach of the shortie fingers. So, I put them in a bowl, but then he wanted to feed them to Muck and Bob the Builder... So, I came up with serving them in the ice cube tray, and this seems novel enough for him to actually finish eating a packet without flinging them around the room...




The second picture also shows off his latest sign - he just started using this himself to say something was "good" - I'm sure he picked it up from Luey, who also uses this quite frequently, but I don't know if Luey explained the sign to him, or if he just figured it out from the context... It's too cute though!

Well, I'm off to confront my Bibliophobia this afternoon, after having confirmed with mum last night that my poetry lecturer is a true Ludite and detests referencing from the net, even if said references come from online peer journals! I don't have true bibliophobia, I quite like to sit and read or writing in libraries, I just fear having to find books in them because I can't read the print on spines of books, especially those high up and down low, argh... I'll have to just play on my lack of vision and get the librarian to find the books for me, I guess, but I hate making it known to strangers (face to face) that I'm nearly blind - they tend to treat you differently, like grabbing your arm to lead you places, UGH! And I always feel like I should "act" more blind, or they'll just think I'm putting it on...

Friday, September 14, 2007

*GASP!*

Well, it feels like I've been swimming under water, holding my breath all week in order to get the two assignments done that were due this afternoon. The first was three poems and a quick write up of one poet's life and poetry, including a review of one poem of said poet that I like and why I like it... So, I chose Elizabeth Barrett Browning, and her poem, "Lord Walter's Wife" which is a discussion between a man and a married woman where the woman accuses the man and his ilk of objectify women. Fascinating reading!

The other assignment was writing a children's picture book, for which I wrote a poem of 16 four lined verses about a piglet who is accident prone because he doesn't think before he acts, and how he comes to change his ways. Yeah, yeah, it's totally tied in with my experiences with Erik...

And I don't get a break now, but tomorrow morning it's off to the library to get books on Emily Dickinson, and then writing up a group of poems about Blessingways (I have to write poetry to between 100 and 150 lines with one strong theme).

I can't believe that next week is basically the end of this term for me, and so I'm half way through the semester, and soon I'll be having to start writing my thesis!

Which means soon Dave and I will be ttcing our dear daughter!!! Whoo eeeee, it's all moving along so fast...

Toda I had the misfortune of reading a blog that lamented the view of women being the vessel that carries a man's seed, UGH! What a thought! Imagine a) thinking of making a baby that way, b) feeling yourself viewed that way!!! I've never felt that anyone viewed me merely as the vessel of Dave's seed - I mean a baby is both part of the father, granted, and the mother! To view it merely as the man's seed is to rob the child of a parent, and to view the father of the child as nothing more than a distant, inanimate seed dispenser. It not only dehumanises the woman, but the man, too. That is incredibly sad!

This got me to thinking about semantics again. For me, and I realise many disagree, but this is my blog, semantics are just that SEMANTICS. Word only have the power you give them. Seeing the words "Womun" and "Wimmin", it struck me that both these words still carry that first "m" that starts the "man" or "men" part of the words they are meant to be replacing, and in fact "feminist", coming of "Femine" and "Female", also carries that very tenuous connection to, or reference to "man". Now, many feminists I know have absolutely no problem with being associated with men, and even do not feel the need to change their written language, but for those who do, it seems incongruant that they should retain that "m" when they are so intent on erradicating the reference to "man" in the words.

THEN it occurred to me that the word "wimmin" does away with the "o", in "women", but the word "womun" keeps the "o", I wonder why the discrimination there? Is it just about the phonics of the word wimmin, that writing wimun would be too close to wimmin and would cause confusion - I means for you Kiwis out there it's all the same word, isn't it???

Removing the "o" from women, does that have anything to do with removing the reference to the womb? I should hope not! Are we now expected to reject our wombs because they seal our fate as women, subjugated by men to be the vessel of their seed? Our wombs are whence our greatest strength and advantage stem, and that includes women who are physically unable to bear children. The very fact that women have wombs, ovaries, breasts mean we are the essence of creation and nurturing. We hae those hormones that cause the growth and development of those brains men are so very proud of. Why reject the womb? Why reject what identifies us as the wonderous beings we are?

Why must being equal to men be about rejecting that they are part of us, or that we are different to them? All early foetuses are female, when they then start growing those male part, the men lose the right to use the affixes Fe- and Wo-, personally, it seems to me they're missing out, we're the lucky one! So, why do some women seem to resent that they are differentiated from men, I just don't get it. I embrace that difference, it's a magnificent difference which makes me feel POWERFUL!

Thursday, September 13, 2007

An issue...

Erik came home this afternoon excited to show me a mini book he made from just one piece of A4 paper, it was cleverly designed and I asked him who showed him how to do it, and he said he made it up himself. I was very excited by this. Erik is very good with paper and creating objects out of paper, it´s somewhat of a hobby of his... So, I suggested I take a series of photos of the 'how to' for making the book and I´d post it on my blog.

I took these photos...











As you can see, the steps come increasingly complicated, a bit too complicated for an 8 year old to figure out on his own, I thought... I asked Erik if he was sure he figured it out by himself, and that the teacher didn´t show him. He was adamant it was his own design and told me the story about how he figured it out, and how he showed the teacher and the teacher put the directions on the board... Call it mother´s instinct, I had to google 'make a book from A4 paper' and right there on the second page of result I found this document...

I showed the document to Erik and he finally admitted the teacher had taught the class how to make the book, and then sat there looking at me with a sheepish grin on his face, as I seethed quietly and dispaired of ever being able to trust my eldest son ever again...

Why lie to me about this? I would have been highly impressed with the book regardless of whether he designed it or not! Why???

Life lessons

Haven't blogged for a couple of days because I've felt a bit overwhelmed with life. So many thoughts going through my head.

Now, I hadn't updated about my assignment since early Friday morning. Later that morning I called mum and as it turned out the entire unit have been given a two week extension, not just the one week extention I already knew about, so in fact, I'd handed the assignment in on time, yay for me!

But then mum rang that evening, to talk to me about my assignment. She'd shown it to my lecturer who has said it was good "draft"! OMG, draft??? Yes, that is what my mm told me. She went on to say the lecturer was happy with the content but I needed to format it according to the Uni style guide. At this point I said to mum that I'd done that. She said, "Yes, but you have some parts in point form. I realise this isn't an essay, but you still can't use point form in an assignment like that."

I couldn't understand, I hadn't put any of the assignment in point form! Then it dawned on me, I'd sent her my NOTES! Can you believe it??? Even that was a bit of a worry because the lecturer had been happy with my notes, but I hadn't follow them all that closely - they were mostly a summary of the article. So, I sent mum the assignment in full.

A funny story came out of it though. When mum showed the notes to the lecturer, the lecturer said I'd don't quite well and noted that I'd chosen the hardest article to critique. To this mum said, "Yes, like mother like daughter!" because coincidentally, when mum did this same unit last year, she chose the exact same article (would you believe it???)... The lecturer did a double take, she hadn't realised I was my mother's daughter.

Mum so graciously sent me the assignment she had done, but knowing she got a HD, I've been far to nervous to read her assignment in case my is vastly different from hers!

On Tuesday mum received my marks for my poetry assignment from a couple of weeks ago (she receives them before us external students because she is the External Studies Co-ordinator), and it seems I received 80% for my poetry, so a distinction, and two, possibly three of my poems are being published in the annual University literary publication, "Tales from the Upper Room" The two definitely being published are the haiku and the tanka I posted here last month.

Haiku first...

Infants sleep soundly
Tame humans or wild bear cubs
Safely with mother

Tanka

Grand developments
Babes saved from illness and death
Powder likens milk
Infants sleep with monitors
Nature now superceded
The third poem I might get published (depending on what the committee think) will be the freeverse I wrote. I find this incredibly ironic considering my trepidation over having to write free verse at all!

Ok, enough with the bragging, LOL...

So, this week I've been knee deep in more poetry exercises, including three more poems and a piece about a poet, requiring a brief analysis of one of the poet's poems. I ended up choosing to write about the life and poetry of Elizabeth Barrett Browning. While deciding on who to write about I looked at the poetry of Emily Dickinson, and I've decided to write my major research assignment on her and her poetry... She is one funny lady! Here are a couple of samples of her work:

I ’M nobody! Who are you?
Are you nobody, too?
Then there ’s a pair of us—don’t tell!
They ’d banish us, you know.

How dreary to be somebody! 5
How public, like a frog
To tell your name the livelong day
To an admiring bog!


And

I FELT a cleavage in my mind
As if my brain had split;
I tried to match it, seam by seam,
But could not make them fit.

The thought behind I strove to join 5
Unto the thought before,
But sequence ravelled out of reach
Like balls upon a floor.
Today, I've been trying to write a children's book... ARGH! My first attempt came off condescending and overly moralistic. Have decided to try the same theme in rhymed couplets and using a chaos story plot - where one catastrophe leads to another and another...

The other life lession has been regarding FIL. I saw him last weekend for a belated Father's Day get together and was quite simply blown away by how much he has deteriorated in the past four months. He colour wasn't good at all, especially on his hands, but also his face, and Dave said it looked better on Sunday than the previous week. When he moved, he moved so slowly it was agonising to watch. His cat was his mirror image, and now I can understand completely why FIL is not willing to having Sheva put down, the old man cat and the old man are two faces of the same coin!

Everytime Dave sees his father he ends up crying afterwards, and tbh, this time I ended up crying with him! And that was after ushering the boys home quickly and having a stiff drink!

Today, Dave has spent the afternoon with his parents up at the hospital where FIL has undergone some routine health check. Dave went along to help his mother with his father who finds it very difficult to go to the toilet on his own because of his deteriorating hip and balance, but is also upset at having to have assistance, and would have wanted it from MIL in a public place like the hospital. Dave was also going to try and convince FIL to sit in a wheel chair rather than attempt to walk up and down all the hospital corridors to the different departments but when I talked to Dave earlier his father hadn't wanted a bar of the wheel chair... As much as I have strong feelings and beliefs regarding the afterlife, it is hard to see a much loved man slipping away before our very eyes! He was so lovely with Bryn the other day, holding his hand and telling him, "You're a very special little chap!" Aw, I don't care to imagine that one day Bryn will not remember this man...

Monday, September 10, 2007

The teacher's form for Erik's assessment...

We just got back the forms from Erik's teacher for his assessment for behavioural issues. This was the teacher who said in his opinion (his expert medical opinion, NOT), we were barking up the wrong tree and Erik didn't have any kind of medical issue, like ADHD... He was actually very firm on this point, he felt Erik knew the rules and actively chose not to follow them, rather than Erik having impulse control issues.

Anyway, I asked him to fill the form in as honestly as possible and to saying whatever he believed on reflection to be true...

The first lot of questions I looked over made me laugh out loud... There were four questions about Erik's level of learning and his enjoyment in class, and the teacher had to reply:

  • 1 = much less (than peers)
  • 2 = somewhat less
  • 3 = slightly less
  • 4 = about average
  • 5 = slightly more
  • 6 = somewhat more
  • 7 = much more
Q1. How hard is he'she working : A = 2
Q2. How appropriate is he/she behaving : A = 1
Q3. How much is he/she learning : A = 4
Q4. How happy is he/she : A = 6

Rofl, so to summise, while Erik isn't working very hard, or behaving very well at school, he's still learning as much as the average child in the class, and is VERY happy, hahahaha!

Meanwhile, in another part of the form, where a number of behaviours are listed and then rate:

0 = Not true
1 = Somewhat or Sometimes true
2 = Very true or Often true

The behaviours for which the teacher rated 2 were:

Can't concentrate, can't pay attention for long
Can't sit still, restless, or hyperactive
Cruelty, bullying or meanness to others (wow, really?)
Demands a lot of attention
Disabedient at school
Disturbs other pupils
Breaks school rules
Impulsive or acts without thinking
Lying or cheating
Physically attacks people
Disrupts class discipline
Behaves irresponsibly (described as: stealing, hitting, lying]
Shows off or clowning
Explosive or unpredictable behaviour (on another part of the form he said Erik did not have temper outbursts, so I'm guessing that this refers more to the unpredictable behaviour bit)
Inattentive or easily distracted
Steals
Strange behaviour (described as: kissing girls)
Talks too much
Teases a lot

The behaviours rated 1 were:

Acts too young for his age
Hums or makes other odd noises in class
Argues a lot
Fails to finish things he starts
Can't get his mind off certain thoughs/obsessions (he failed to descibed what though)
Confused or seems to be in a fog
Fidgets
Daydreams or gets lost in his thought
Distroys this own things
Destroys property belonging to others
Difficulty following directions
Doesn't get along with other pupils
Easily jealous
Fears he might think or do something bad
Feels others are out to get him
Gets in many fights
Gets teased a lot
Hangs around with others who get in trouble
Bites fingernails
Nervous, highstrung, tense
Nervous movements or twitching (described as: during class discussion when lying)
Not liked by other pupils
Has difficulty learning
Talks out of turn
Picks nose, skins, other parts of body
Apathetic and unmotivated
Poor school work
Poorly co-ordinated or clumsy
Prefers being with younger children
Screams a lot
Secretive, keeps things to self
Messy work
Too shy or timid
Stares blankly
Strange ideas (failed to describe)
Stubborn, sullen or irretable
Sudden changes in moods or feelings
Suspicious
Underacheiving, not working up to potential
Temper tantrums or hot temper
Threatens people
Fails to carry out assigned tasks
Unusually loud
Is afraid of making mistakes
Whining
Worries

Behaviour rated 0:

There is very little he enjoys
Defiant, talks back to staff
Bragging, boasting
Clinging to adults or too dependent
Complains of loneliness
Cries a lot
Deliberately harms self or attempts suicide
Doesn't seem to feel guilty after misbehaving
Fears certain animals, places, or situations other than school
Fears going to school
Feels he has to be perfect
Feels or complains that no one loves him
Feels worthless or inferior
Gets hurt a lot, accident prone
Hears sounds or voices that aren't there
Would rather be alone than with others
Overconforms to rules
Too fearful or anxious
Feels dizzy or lightheaded
Feels too guilty
Overtired without good reason
Overweight
Aches or pains
Headaches
Nausea, feels sick
Eye problems
Rashes or other skin problems (He obviously hadn't noticed Erik has psoriasis)
Stomach aches
Vomiting, throwing up
Sleeps in class
Prefers being with older children or youths
Refuses to talk
Repeats certain acts over and over; compulsions
Sees things that aren't there
Self-conscious or easily embarrassed
Demands must be met immediately, easily frustrated
Speech problem
Feels hurt when criticized
Stores up too many things he doesn't need
Sulks a lot
Swearing or obscene language
Talks about killing self
Seems preoccupied with sex
Tardy to school or class
Smokes, chews or sniffs tobacco (yes, this is really on the list!)
Truancy or unexplained absence
Unhappy, sad or depressed
Uses alcohol or drugs for nonmedical purposes
Overly anxious to please
Dislikes school
Unclean personal appearance
Withdrawn, doesn't get involved with others

This guy was telling me on FRIDAY that Erik doesn't have ADD because he can sit still in class, and then he contradicts himself with this form, on this part of the form he says Erik sometimes speaks out of turn, but on another part of the test he says it's completely untrue that Erik interrupts or intrudes on others conversations...

Anyway, there are a number of things Dave and I will mark differently to him (oh and he claims to have known Erik for 3 months, at 30 hours a week, but he's only been his class teacher since the middle of July! That's not three months!

On the ADHD list, I'll compare his results to our, ours I'll put in parentheses():

  1. Fails to give close attention to details or makes careless mistakes in schoolwork - sometimes (often)
  2. Fidgets with hands and feet and squirms in seat - sometimes (very often)
  3. Has difficulty sustaning attention in tasks and play activities - often (very often)
  4. Leaves seat in classroom or in other situations in which remaining seated is expected - sometimes (very often)
  5. Does not seem to listen when spoken to directly - sometimes (very often)
  6. Runs about or climbs excessively in situations in which it is inappropriate - never or rarely (??? - VERY often)
  7. Does not follow through on instructions and fails to finish work - sometimes (often)
  8. Has difficulty playing or engaing in leisure activities quietly - often (very often)
  9. Is on the go or acts as if driven by a motor - sometimes (very often)
  10. Has difficulty organising tasks and activities - sometimes (very often)
  11. Avoids tasks (school work, homework) that require mental effort - sometimes (sometimes)
  12. Talks excessively - sometimes (very often)
  13. Loses things necessary for tasks and activities - never or rarely (very often)
  14. Blurts out answers before questions have been completed - never or rarely (often)
  15. Is easily distracted - often (very often)
  16. Has difficulty awaiting turn - sometimes - (very often)
  17. Is forgetful in daily activities - never or rarely (very often)
  18. Interrupts or intrudes on others - sometimes (very often)
I found it interesting that the things he claims never or rarely happening are the things we seems to find happen very often, like losing things, Erik loses stuff EVERY DAY at school, his jacket, his hat, his bag! But I guess the teacher never sees that. Come to think of it, I don't think there is much opportunity for Erik to lose anything in class, because he's not responsible for anything there!

Sunday, September 09, 2007

I'd rather be a disabled woman than a healthy man...

I've been thinking about this concept of "having a healthy baby is the most important thing!" Now, don't get me wrong, I'm not saying I'd wish illness or disability on any of my children, but really, is being healthy the MOST important thing, and is it fair to tell a mother than whatever she wishes is always secondary to having a healthy baby.

Another way to put it... If a woman wishes for a particular kind of birth and doesn't get it, or a woman wishes for a particularly gendered child and doesn't get it, is it FAIR to say, "At least your baby is healthy?" I mean, ok, to all those people who think that a child should not be a "disappointment" because of how they ended up being born, or because of the gender they are, would you happily accept a child with a challenge; perhaps Down Syndrome, or Reflux, or Asthma, or ADD, or Autism? It's ok to be disappointed and to wish that a child did not have those things, but it's not ok to wish that a child was a particular gender, even though being a particular gender means having particular experiences... For example, boy children will never know what it is to carry another person within their body, or nourish a child from their breast. A boy child will never understand the subtlies of how women communicate in a sisterhood that is not equalled amongst men. A girl child will likely never know what it is to always be assumed to be equal in the workplace without having to "fight for it, and work twice as hard for equal acceptance", she will never know what it is to be part of the "brotherhood of men"... A child born as a result of an induction will never know the benefits of natural hormones, and a child born in distress from an emergency c'section with never know what it was like to be born without adrenalin running through it's system (and this is in NO way a judgement of parents who have been through these events, these are not our choices and that is why we feel disappointment oftentimes)...

And yet, as a person with a disability, who has never known what it was like to see far and wide, to drive a car, to watch my sons playing on a football field, or take them bike riding or point out the fabulous rainbow parakeets up in the tree to them, I am happy! To never have experienced the stillness of meditation, or sleeping without the sensation of bugs crawling inside my legs, and yet, I don't regret (mostly) being born a girl with a disability.

"The most important thing is that the child is healthy", and what if the child isn't healthy? Because that's the most important thing, do you get to "rightfully" reject that child? No? Well, then that's a lot like having gender disappointment, or birth disappointment, isn't it... So, why the judgement of parents who are disappointed in these ways? Why is it more ok to be disappointed about disability than about gender? Having a disability has it's challenge, being a particular gender also has it's challenges - ask any woman with endometriosis, or any man who has had prostate cancer...

In the end, I'd rather be a woman with a disability than be a healthy man, I don't know any different. My parents both had gender disappointment when I was born, AND they didn't get a healthy baby either, and yet, somehow they managed to love me as much as they loved my healthy brother!

Friday, September 07, 2007

Recordings...

Ok, just in here to record that I FINALLY finished that literature critical exercise last night (ok, EARLY this morning) and sent it on to mum (the external studies co-ordinator)... Unfortunately, when I was double checking the email details for handing in the assignment, I discovered it should have been handed in at the end of week 5, that was LAT FRIDAY, not today. ARGH!!! Took me an hour to get to sleep after realising I'd just handed my assignment in a week late. Have to call mum this morning and find out what the penalty will be. I think I'll probably still get a mark, but it might only be a pass/fail mark, instread of a percentage. Bugger, how did I let that happen??? Why did I put the assignment due date down as week 6 on my assignment calender???

In more positive news, I got a positive OPK result this morning, on CD14!!! That means I'll ovulate some time in the next 24-48 hours, which, in fact, would be a LATER ovulation time than usual for me, because usually I ovulate on CD 11-13... Last cycle I ovulated on CD 7-8, which was much earlier than usual for me, so my hormones are being a bit whacky of late. Mind you delayed ovulation might be caused by stress, and as the days have passed with negative OPK after negative OPK, I have certainly felt more stress. I'm honestly worried that I've stopped ovulating each cycle, which would definitely minimize my chances of conceiving next year...

Oh well, I AM ovulating this cycle, which looks like it might end up being a longer cycle, which would then make up a little for the super short cycle I had last time.

Something else that happened this week that is positive is that after some love making the other night, I ask Dave if it would be ok for me to pH test his sperm. I fully expected him to say no, to be really resistant to encouraging my baby dreaming, but he WASN'T!!! He performed the test himself and didn't make any noises about me obviously preparing for conceiving a girl (and yes, he is fully aware of everything I'm researching and planning atm).'

His pH was 8, btw, which is apparently very good! I only need to get it down .5! Most of the women on the forums I'm participating in have to get their partners down by 1.5, and even with cranberry and acidopholus supplements find that a challenge! Even without the supplement Dave is nearly there! My own pH is now consistently at 4.5 which is also GREAT! I have a REALLY good feeling about our chances of having a girl this time! I actually think the extra nearly three years since Bryn's conception have shifted things in our favour finally, and then with just a nudge from us in the right direction, I think our chances will be further heightened! Very exciting!!!

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Brain: Uuuuh?...

Have been inspired by a friend, and have borrowed her brain in order to do this blog today... Here is a scan of a healthy adult brain, beautiful isn't it...



Here is a scan taken of my brain when I was 18... It ain't half surprising that two previous scans of my brain went *missing*, and this one went "walkabout" for a month (into University lecture halls), before I got it back - after threatening violence upon my Dr... When he brought me in to discuss the scan, he didn't say anything for a few minutes, just start there staring at me, until finally I said, "So???", and he went, "Hmmm, I'm not sure exactly how to tell you this, but half your brain is missing, and you shouldn't be able to walk or talk..." Good thing no one told me that when I was born, huh?





I actually find it quite confronting to look at these scans, and only bring them out once in a blue moon, but well, seeing as I'd recently referred to my unusual brain structure, and seeing as Leah posted her scan, I thought it might be interesting to compare them... Hope you don't mind, Leah, I msn'd you but you must have been away from the computer. I'm happy to take the pic down as soon as I get home if you'd prefer it not to be up there...

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Erik's assessment

This is mostly copied and pasted from a reply to a thread on a parenting board, so my apologies to anyone who as already (mostly) read this...

We had the assessment this morning. The Dr was lovely, and basically interviewed us about our family and about Erik, including checking for any other issues that might impact on his behaviour (she didn't say as much, but having had counsellors as parents I was aware of what she was trying to find out)... At one point she did ask if anyone in either of mine or Dave's families had exhibited similar lack of impulse control and sensory overstimulation and despite saying I wouldn't tell, I did say Erik was a lot like me as a child, and I had been assessed as having ADD at age 18. She asked about how I was assessed, and seemed happy with my reply. I told her there was a big question mark over my assessment though because of my unusual brain structure (for those of you who don't know, about 1/3 of my brain is not there, as in is liquid instead of structured or some such thing, this doesn't seem to have affected my intellect, but have caused my low vision and possibly other side effects which might be diagnosed as short term memory losses, ADD, and epilepsy, depending on whom you ask - I am not on medication for any of these diagnoses because I'm not convinced that any of them are completely accurate)... She then asked if anyone else in my family had ADD or exhibited ADD like behaviour, and I told her that since my assessment, my mother and brother have both wondered if perhaps they do not also fit the criteria. Mum can also see ADD like behaviours in her father, who passed away 20 odd years ago...

We've now been given forms in duplicate to fill out (with his teacher or someone who knows him well at school getting the duplicate set). Those need to be returned by the end of next week, and then we have another appointment on the 17th of October.

She said it did seem he had all the hallmarks of ADD, but she also said there are a number of other issues he might be dealing with, eg. Auditory Processing Delay, or a Sensory intergration issue, and so they'll find out more through the questionnaire and other testing.

I voiced my concern about misdiagnosis and medicating etc. and she said that that is why they try to be as thorough as possible and treatment always starts with behavioural exercises before medications are considered.

She sents us home with several different sheets on ways to work with short attention spans, distractibility and so on, which was very reassuring as well.

Erik was in fine form, might I add. He started out quiet and fidgety as per usual in a new setting, and by the end of the hour he was getting into EVERYTHING in the office and having great trouble taking direction from either Dh or I.

One thing that REALLY made me happy though, was that the Dr said we're on the right track with how we interact with him, that it was obvious to her that we're loving and reasonable in our expectations, but also setting good boundaries for him. I know it really shouldn't matter what a stranger thinks, but WOW! I could have hugged her for saying those things because some days I feel completely useless as a parent and wonder what the hell I'm doing wrong!

Monday, September 03, 2007

Sadness around the edges...

It's been an emotionally intense week here...

Dave and I have been emotionally closer in the last little while, which has been really nice, but all this emotional intensity also seems to heighten sensitivity to other emotions as well...

The other night there wasn't anything on tv, so we watched a DVD Dave bought a while back that we hadn't watch yet, "Out of Africa" - the likelhood is that you've seen this movie starring Meryl Streep and Robert Redford (before he became just far too old to be sexy anymore)... The movie was based on the memoirs of Isak Dinesen, danish author (who was the Baroness Karen von Blixen-Finecke)...

Anyway, by the end of the movie, I felt such sadness for this woman who lost everything she lived for; children, her farm, and the love of her life. I can't explain why it affected me so much, except to say that I probably fear living a life like hers quite a bit! Which isn't a good thing, because if you focus on not riding into that tree over there, then you're sure to hit it like a bullseye...

FATHER'S DAY

Yesterday was a bit of a mess. I didn't organise anything for Dave, but Luey (he's such an amazing child) did a better job than me and had a present for Dave that he'd made at school. We were going to go over and visit Dave's parents, but it becamse evident by about lunch time that the boys were too hyped up to inflict on FIL who tires very easily these days. Dave rang his parents, and as it turned out MIL hadn't made plans for our visit anyway because she didn't believe it had been confirmed. So, Dave went over in the afternoon on his own with our cards and token gift in hand. He was gone for several hours because MIL needed him to run a quick shopping errand for them as they hadn't made it out of the house all week.

Dave was visibly shaken when he got back home. He says that now when he sees his Dad after just a few short weeks interval, he can visibly see the man aging before his eyes. Dave is sure this will be FIL's last Christmas, and his 85th birthday in early January will be his last birthday. Obviously, Dave is upset by this and I'm upset for him.

No plans have been made for FIL's eventual passing and this is causing stress for MIL. There are no funeral plans, and understandably FIL isn't interested in discussing these things. I'm very concerned about what will happen to MIL after FIL passes. Will she be ok to stay in their family home, or will it be too much for her, too isolating. She doesn't have any other family except her estranged sister and Dave, and she has one friend who visits every week, that isn't a lot of people.

Dave is feeling overwhelmed by the whole idea of dealing with all of this in the next few months, and this is where I'm kicking myself for being so self-centred... Please don't judge me on what I'm about to say because, believe me, I judge myself more than anyone else could... The stress of losing FIL and helping MIL to adjust afterwards may threaten my chances of convincing Dave to have #4, and I'm in a panic about it. I have this deadline and I'm committed to not going beyond it, but well, if FIL dies during the next 10 months, as Dave is predicting, how can I possibly put the hard word on Dave about having #4. I know, it's reprehensible that I should be prioritising having another baby over the importance of FIL passing away, but Dave won't have the energy to deal with both, I don't think... Why now?

Sunday, September 02, 2007

The weird and wonderful world of trying to conceive a girl...

WARNING: If you believe conceiving children should be left up to the gods, and should a romantic moment with a "let's just wait and see" attitude, you might not want to read on...

So, here I am in full swing LOAing my way to my daughter. I'm signed up with a-gender and have just recently discovered the In-gender forums. In there low-tech gender selection sub-forum I'm been learning all about the effects of diet on cm, as well as learning new terms like TBM, Spliming, why latex condoms are not good for collecting sperm, how lubricants such as Replens and Rephresh (which I don't believe are sold in Australia) can help to lower my cervical mucus pH, and how Dave's sperm pH needs to be down to 4.5 for calcium to bond to the Y chromosone sperm, immobilizing them...

So, let me explain a couple of new terms I've learned...

Swaying = Do various things to increase your likelihood of conceiving one gender over the other.

TBM = Turkey Baster Method, not unlike the teaspoon and the vegemite jar method, LOL, this is about collecting sperm in order to self-inseminate. Self-insemination raises the likelihood of conceiving a girl because you can control how far from the cervix the sperm is deposited, the farther away, the more likelihood of Y sperm not making the distance to the egg. TBMing and spliming exclusively (no actual sex which increases the woman's own cervical mucus making a welcoming environment for Y (male) sperm to swim up and meet the egg) is consdered the best way to sway for a girl.

TBM is usually done to accommodate Spliming...

Spliming = adding drops of lime to sperm in order to lower the sperm pH and immobilize the Y sperm. Sperm is collected, and then pH tested. Much sperm is between 7 and 9 pH, which is alkaline and a great environment for both X and Y sperm to live (about 50/50). By lowering the pH level, to at least 5.5, you reduce the ratio of X and Y sperm to around 70/30, respectively. Ideally, you need to lower the pH to 4.5, at which point you dramatically decrease the likelihood of Y sperm living.

O+12 = This is about introducing sperm to the cervix at about 12 hours after Ovulation occurs. This has strongly been link with increasing the likelihood of conceiving a girl.

Girl/Boy dates = this is the idea that certain dates each month are more prone to yield girl or boy conceptions, here is an example of this - I know a-gender uses some version of this, but I believe it more specific to each couple based on person biorhythmns or some such thing...

Girl/Boy diet = this is about making your body more alkaline (for a boy) or acid (for a girl)... This is an example of a girl diet I found...


GIRL DIET

DRINKS - high calcium milk must have 750ml min each day. Or high calcium water (acidic ph) bottled varieties - evian, perrier etc (thats it ladies - I am sorry)

MEAT - 130g per day only - more white than red

EGGS - ok in moderation

Unsalted butter

DAIRY - Yoghurt, milk desserts (2 x a day)+ milk as above

Bread - low/no salt variety (reduce yeast products)

Nuts - almonds, peanuts, hazel nuts, cashews all unsalted

FRUITS - apples, strawberries, rasberries

VEGES - Potatoes minimal (3 x week max) green beans, onions, leeks, peas, cucumber, radish, capsicum, celery, cooked tomato, eggplant, fresh asparagus, green salad

Jam - once per day

Rice, pasta, flour

Oils,spices, curry powders (no salt)

NONE OF THE FOLLOWING

Coffee, tea, chocolate, fruit juice, soft drinks, alcohol, pork, ham, ready to eat meals, smoked anything, sauces and gravy, shellfish, cheese (try nimbin low salt variety - this would be ok in small quantities), cakes (store bought) quiche, pizza, corn, popcorn, dry fruit, all other fruit than what is allowed, liquorice, olives, gherkins, tin or packet soup, alka seltzer or antacids...


Well, there you go! More than you ever wanted to know about conceiving a girl...

Teenagers and the failing parent...