Monday, March 31, 2008

I am Mother, hear me whinge...

Oh dear, I thought I was going to have it all worked out this time. These holidays were going to be fine, and I wasn't going to start counting down the days till school returned, but things have conspired to chip away at my optimism, and this morning I'm sooooooooo ready for the holidays to be over...

First off, we've been sick, which has meant a lot of hanging around inside TOGETHER...

Then, well the rains have finally come, and so it's been nice and chilly and wet here in Melbourne, and while part of me is rejoicing in all the wetness and resulting greenness, this does make it hard for the kids to repeat their summer habit of spending most of the day running around OUTSIDE, burning off their excess energy.

Finally, Bryn is giving as good as he gets in the teasing, taunting, and outright torturing stakes, and for some reason this seems to have given the boys permission to redouble their efforts to outdo him...

Do I need to remind everyone I don't drive and so just taking off somewhere is just not on the cards.

Also, we're stone cold broke...

So, enough whinged, and only 6 days to go until school is back (not counting the rest of today)!

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Write that, absolutely write that! Or not...

Crap!

Just got a call from mum giving me a heads up that the head of dept. has now read my thesis proposal and had decided my story lacks both plot and tension...

Well, that´s not good, especially when I think it has a pretty strong plot and HIGH tension... Obviously I haven´t conveyed that very well...

So, being a typical writer who has just been told my baby is ugly and brain-dead toboot, I'm headed straight into a tail spin - a defensive tail spin...

So, I start lamenting to Leah about it, and she hooks me up with the following youtube clip that really put it all in perspective for me...



This reminds me that for the past year, my mum has complained to me about how much this same guy wants to change her own story beyond recognition, even though he's never actually written a novel in her genre (or mine for that matter)... When he doesn't get it, he wants to rewrite it the way HE would write it.

I know there is a rather large market for my book. I know the readership (child bearing aged women) will get the tension. I know this market better than he does.

I can see I need to start the story differently, and I need to jazz it up a bit. I won't abandon the story though... This is my book that people will be divided on - obviously it's started already.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Been a BIZ-ZEE day!

Had a BaBs committee meeting this morning, was going to be at my mw's house, but as she was trying to catch up on sleep from the very early morning birth of bonnie wee girl, I was asked if I wouldn't minding hosting...

Rofl, well, you know, I don't wash my floors except twice a year, but this morning I made an exception, hahaha! Bryn had decided - yesterday afternoon - to do a tea and milk arrowroot floor mural in my lounge room so there was not getting around washing the floor!

Meeting went well :).

So, then off to the actual BaBs meeting, which was nice and casual today, really just letting the conversation flow where it might.

Had a chat with my midwife, told her I'd decided against shared care, so now she'll back book me into the RWH... I'm trying not to be stupidsticious about this - I want NOTHING to do with that hospital, but I have to have faith that I WILL have nothing to do with that hospital, and simply faxing them my details is NOT inviting them into my life...

I told J that I have made plans to talk with Dave about the homebirth over Easter, because I just want us all to work from the position I'm working towards - she seemed quite happy with this, so that's a weight of my shoulders now too.

Bryn was a bit restless at the BaBs meeting, but towards the end got down on the floor with Archie and another bub and just played which was nice to see. Later in Jen's car, he was being very affectionate with Archie, which again was reassuring...

Then picked the boys up from school, did a bit of shopping and stopped for icecream. We were all just sitting around chatting about nothing much and then Bryn hears a baby complaining in another prams and he looks at that baby, then looks at me and says what I thought was, "I don't like babies..."

I asked him if he didn't like babies and he repeated with emphasis, "I LIKE babies!"

One, two, three...

Aaaaaawwwwwwwww!

Well, isn't that nice - hope it lasts!

Another little Bryn story for the week is that after a couple of months of pointing out colours to him, sometimes by means of sharing lollies - I'll admit! - because well, aren't we more likely to remember that which we associate good things with... He's started coming out with "red car!, and "green bus" and "purple shirt" and today it was, "orange ball". I know some kids know their colours at 18 months of age, I don't care, it's fantastic that he's doing it at all, to me!

She's just a mum...

I was telling Juniper the following story tonight, when she told me about her most recent blog - which I hadn't read at the time... If you haven't read her blog, you'll find it under "Always looking forward" over there in my blogroll...

Anyway, this happened to me tonight...

I'd decided to be lazy and give the boys Maccas for dinner before I went out for the night. It was about 4.30pm and so Maccas was choccas with school kids all yapping and preening themselves together...

So, I get in line, 6th person from the counter with my stroller in front of me, and I've been in line for about three minutes when I notice this 6'2" (or more) tall teen in basketball gear go and stand at the front of my line, just off to the right. At first I thought he might be waiting on an order he'd already put in, as often happens in these peak time situations...

When an equally tall mate joined him, and then a minute later another mate, I realised they were forming their own "queue" looking to push in line.

Now 5th in line, I just watched them...

The line s l o w l y moved along, and they kind of just stood around, obviously not game to push in front of the other guys about their age, or the skinny blonde 16 somethings who were next. When there was just one teen guy in front of me the last guy in this "pseudo line" started trying to edge his way in front of my stroller.

Well, me being me... I said, "Hey, mate, what do you think you're doing?"

He looks at me innocent like and says, "I'm waiting for my turn"

I say, "Well, I was in this line about three minutes before you showed up so you should be behind me"

He says, "I've been standing here for ten minutes already"

I say, "Yeah, so I've been here for 13 minutes then"

So, he just turns away, but doesn't move away.

A minute later the guy in front of me moves away from the counter, and I determinedly push my stroller to the counter, but because the other guy is much taller than me the check out chuck asks HIM what he'd like...

I pipe up with, "Excuse me, I've been standing in this line longer than this guy, and he and his mates are trying to push in."

The guy behind the counter apologises saying he wasn't aware of that and asks me what I would like.

The kid then says loudly under his breath, "Bitch!"

I turn to him and leaning back (so I can see his face up there in the clouds, I'm only 5'4"), I say, "Would you like to say that to my face?"

He kind of flinches, acting as if he doesn't know what I'm refering to, and so I say, "Well, go away then."

I then carry on making my order and don't make eye contact with this kid or his mates again...

I was shaking a bit, rofl, but I don't know if it was fear or anger! It dawned on me that *I* had been the "soft target"... They'd obviously pegged me as "a mum", who probably would shut up and put up...

Obviously, they pegged me wrong...

Had the boy been fool enough to repeat his insult, I was ready to come back with, "I feel sorry for you mum, I'm sure she didn't bring you up to be this way..."

LOL, then my boys got a talking to about how NOT to speak to other people's mothers...

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

My new favourite song...

So it rips off one of my old favourite songs, but whomever wrote this is totally on my wavelength (WARNING: contains offensive language)

Friday, March 14, 2008

Dulling the senses...

A recent thread on a forum really got me thinking. I had a strong gut reaction to it, and that got me thinking about WHY I had such a strong reaction to it, which led to more thinking, and this blog...

I've been thinking that in our society these days, dulling down our senses and softening our experience of emotion has become such an accepted practice in life that we don't really question it.

What to I mean by dulling the senses? Well, anything that alters our experience of our emotions. First and foremost, we might think alcohol and drugs, but if we think about it further many other activities can also have this same effect. Eating to excess, tv watching, net browsing, and more obviously self-destructive behaviours such a cutting oneself, starving oneself, gorging and purging...

Most of us engaging in some form of dulling our own senses, of comforting ourselves or relaxing ourselves in ways that are not to the best advantage of our bodies or spirits or emotions.

We learn to do these things early on by watching what adults around us do.

This is where it has become entrenched in our society. It is completely acceptible to drink alcohol for fun and relaxation, or to eat ourselves sick in celebration of something, or to take drugs to have fun.

But are these things really serving those purposes or do they serve a different purpose.

Escapism is much sought after in our society. We esteem it in book reading, not so much in tv watching. Eating chocolate is almost universally celebrated as a way to "lift the mood", and alcohol "relaxes".

But what's really going on here. If we're completely honest. Isn't it simply a case of not wanting to deal with feelings of sadness or boredom? Isn't it actually about not being happy and feeling like not being happy is something we need to put a stop to, rather than look at, evaluate and possibly do something constructive about.

Many of these forms of escapism take hold in adolesence and I don't, personally, think this is just a coincidence. In adolesence, the adolescent has come to the end of their general learning about the world - the big picture - and have enter that stage in life when a person decides WHERE they belong in the big picture. Obviously, throughout life we re-evaluate this, but the first process of making this decision (like many other "first steps") always seems like the most important, the most critical. It can feel like a lot of pressure for adolescents, and our society does put a lot of emphasis on the importance of that decision (as many societies do). It's really the first "adult" decision an adolescent has to make.

So, feeling overwhelmed (usually), adolescents are looking for ways to cope with those feelings, and as always, they model the adults in society. So, what do we teaching them about coping with stress and other negative emotions. Well, as a society, we seem deadset focused on ESCAPING these feelings; we go to bars, we got to restaurants, we treat ourselves with chocolate, we try to take control by going to the gym, or we turn on the tv to escape our spinning thoughts. We also escape into the imagined world of reading fiction.

None of these things, in small doses, are intrinsically bad. In fact, reducing stress in the short term can help free up the mind so new lateral thoughts can develop about how to cope with the stress. Chocolate has lots of benefits (dark chocolate in moderation that is), so does red wine. Food is essential for life and health and so is exercise.

However, it's when these things take over our lives and become obsessions which negatively affect our ability to function in life without them at level which affect our ability to live balanced lives.

The thing is, the line between functioning and not functioning is fairly thin, and when people go from functioning to not functioning, it tends to happen all at once because the ability to "hold it together" get stretched and stretched until it finally collapses dramatically in a heap.

And permanent damage has usually be done LONG before the person ceases to function.

My grandfather was a highly functioning alcoholic for much of his life - even to the end of his days he took care of himself, despite not holding a steady job. However, long before he no longer could work reliably, he was already doing damage to his liver.

People who reach 250kg and can no longer support their own weight for more than a few short minutes at a time, were already doing permanent damage to their joints and heart at just 120kg, at that stage they were already at a heightened risk of diabetes, heart failure, and so on.

At the other end of the scale, you don't need to be a 35kg anorexic in hospital before you "have a life threatening problem". In fact, at 45-50kg, you're already at risk of osteoporosis. You've already put pressure on your heart and eaten away at your muscles.

Even reading can be detrimental to your health. If all you do is sit at home and read (I had an uncle who did this), you may have a fantastic imaginary life, or you may know a phenomena amount about the world outside your house... But you may have no social life at all, be extremely sedentary, and be emotionally shut off from yourself, you family, and the outside world.

Anyway, what adults choose to do that does not affect others in society is fine.

The thing is, if we teach our children, and the adolescents in our society, to subdue their feelings, rather than experience them, work through them, acknowledge them and embrace them, are we doing right by those children and adolescents.

This is not even getting into the health dangers of compulsive behaviours, which are many and varied.

And the fact that our society seems to abhor any feelings of sadness, anger, anxiety, depression, and encourages us in subtle and far less subtle ways to just dismiss these feelings is a whole other blog...

I've personally developed some entrenched escapist habits, and this also leads me to think that waiting to "deal" with feelings until later, actually makes it harder. I believe it's important to FIRST teach our children and adolescents to recognise their emotions and the skills to work through them - without trying to simply escape them - and THEN they can experiment with forms of short term escapism, when they know the various risks of trying to escape emotions rather than deal with them.

It is short changing our children to teach them escapism before they've fully matured physically and hormonally...

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

That happy, happy feeling...

It's so fleeting isn't it? Like the tide, you know it'll come and go, but you can't really control it.

Being empathic, I have issues with taking on other people's emotions. I've really got to work on cutting those attachments. Letting other people have their emotions, without assimilating them into myself.

I often have that "everything is going to be great!" feeling. I had it when I finished my last blog. Wouldn't it be wonderful if everyone felt like that about life? Then I think I could savour the feeling for longer when it washed over me, LOL.

I hate struggling over other people's emotions. Worrying about how other people feel, especially how others feel about me and my choices. LOL, I always have so much faith in my own decisions! Over confidence maybe, but somehow I can't seem to translate that faith in a way that others are filled with it as well.

WRT to this birth. I've had some feelings about just having the baby without anyone around. I'm certainly not a freebirth advocate, and ideally I'd love to have the company and support of my husband and a qualified midwife (and of course my doula), but I only want people who are fully confident in my ability to birth at home at my birth. I don't want anyone who arrives at the scene with contingency plans in the back of their mind, yk?

I really believe this birth will be as straight forward as Luey and Bryn's were. I "feel it in my bones", and this is what has me thinking, do I really need to be inviting people in who might not share that feeling?

Oh well, it's month away, plenty of time to really weigh up everyone's attitude :).

Sunday, March 09, 2008

Home alone... The wacky stuff that surfaces when the mindscape is free to be roamed...

Dave has just taken ALL THREE boys to the park. It's a 15 minute walk there, and another 15 minutes home (duh!), and so even if they get there and it's been erased from existence, I have 30 minutes ALL TO MYSELF!!!

When they left, Video Shits was on the box, and this song just started playing...

I've been attracted to this song through the new Apple Mac add about their new super slim laptop. It always makes me think of "The Rainbow Children", that is the generation of children who have started coming through in about 90% of births, since last year. Some of you will have heard of the Indigo Children, and the Crystal children, yeah? Well, the Rainbow Children are the next lot to come through. They started coming through several years ago in very small numbers - I believe Luey was one - as scouts, and then those numbers have increased and now, since last year, they're coming through in masses...

The distinguishing mark of the rainbow child, is that they're a "NEW SOUL". They've been around for ever like every other soul, but they haven't been here before.

They are used to MANIFESTING their reality instanteously with thought, and therefore they can find this world a struggle because most humans don't even realise they can do this, let alone actually try doing this.

All the hype about "The Secret" is really only a foreword on what humans can actually do (according to this belief structure - I know I'm probably freaking a few of you out with this stuff, rofl, but I'm mostly sane - mostly)... So, rainbow children have always lived by the law of attraction, except for them it's been instanteous! As children, these children are very affectionate, and also prone to tantrums when their expectations aren't met instantaneously. For them, the experience of life here on Earth can be like walking through thick, sticky mud...

Anyhoo, so back to the song. I just saw the video for the first time. This song about a new soul coming here for new experiences, and the VIDEO actually depicts manifesting! How fantastic is that?

Of course, being pregnant right now, I'm very excited that I can FEEL my baby has a twin - if not in physical form (which is far less likely) then certainly in spirit form, higher self form. The connection is REALLY strong. It's like carrying two souls!!! I cannot WAIT to meet this person!!!

Ok, I'm taking my madness and leaving you with the song...

Saturday, March 08, 2008

7 random and weird facts about me...

Firstly, here are the rules:
1. Link to your tagger and post these rules on your blog
2. Share seven facts about yourself on your blog, some random, some weird
3. Tag seven people at the end of your post by leaving their names as well as links to their blogs
4. Let them know they are tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.

1. I don't think there is anything random or weird left to know about me that I haven't already told everyone. I tend to be painfully honest about myself to all and sundry - the painful bit is not for me, but for those to are exposed to truths about me they never cared to know.

2. My main symptom this pregnancy is sneezing and an excessively stuffy nose (and sometimes ears as well). I sneeze about 20 times a day.

3. I TOTALLY admire conviction and dedication in other people, even when I TOTALLY disagree with that they believe in. I love that people live their lives by rules and beliefs and faith, and dedication (even at the cost of their own lives), and I love hearing about different systems of beliefs and dedication. Conversely, it makes me really shitty when other people make sport of putting down someone else's beliefs and dedication to their beliefs because they themselves DON'T share those beliefs. I find that way of thinking ignorant.

4. I am very judgemental of people who don't own their own truth. Who show the world what they believe the world wants to see, and don't seek to unravel or recognise what motivates them and then own it because they're afraid of rejection from others. People who are blind to themselves and refuse to own their own choices, shit me :).

5. I don't fear death. I dreamt I died a violent death, and while it was painful it led to this incredibly blissful feeling, and since then I've never feared death. I believe those who have died don't cease to exist. Because of this, I find it hard to relate to other people's sorrow over death, and sometimes I wonder if that means there's something wrong, or cold, or detached about me. I wish people could feel what I feel about death, and then there wouldn't be so much sadness and fear in the world.

6. I regret not having taught my boys to speak Icelandic. I feel as if I've shut some door in their understanding of the world by not letting them experience the world through the Icelandic language.

7. I've lost my love of reading. I don't know when it happen, and it really worries me because as a writer it doesn't seem right that I don't love reading, but every time I've picked up a book in the last few years, I've either started to fall asleep or I've felt this great wave of boredom sweep over me, like nothing grabs my imagination anymore. Every time someone suggests I read a book, I'm almost overwhelmed with this need to run away screaming...

Not knowing who has been tagged, I'm tagging: Amanda, Jayne, Mike, Cass, Juniper

I know that's only five, but I don't know who else has tagged other people, so if you haven't been tagged and are crazy enough to WANT to do this, then consider yourself tagged by me...

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

I always wanted a Didymos...

But they're so damned expensive to import! I tried to make myself one back when Erik, was a baby but the cotton I used was too stiff and didn't stretch to cling to Erik's body, it also slipped out of the knot too easily.

So today I got to see a Lana wrap up close of personal, and the idea of being about to back carry a newborn was just too tempting, so I'm buying one on layby - and I got to take it home today without even a deposit, how cool was that!


The fabric is quite amazing. At first I was a little put off because it seemed a little heavy and stiff, but even so, it wraps so neatly around Bryn (as you can see on the back shot), and you don't even need to tie a knot! Just one loop of the fabric and it holds!




So, ignoring the fact that my arse is as wide as the back end of a Hummer, and my lazy eye has gone walk about in outback Australia, check out these pics! I can't get over how high up I can position Bryn in this, and he is so light in it! Cannot wait to try it with a newborn!

Monday, March 03, 2008

My sleeping beauties...

I just took a "classic" shot of Bryn asleep on the couch, and when I uploaded it I realised I had similarly "classic" shots of the other two in various weird and wonderful sleeping position... These kids have obviously never heard of simply lying on your back, side or stomach along the length of your bed. No, sleeping is a performance art in this house...

This first shot of Erik is blurry because I didn't want to use the flash. The unclad state of his pillows and doona have nothing to do with Dh or my own attention to detail, it is merely a result of the boys not being able to lie still for three seconds.

So, with his head hanging off one side of his bed, and his feet hanging off the other, Erik snoozes away. Did we reposition him, you might ask, well, no, we left him there, we figured if he was uncomfortable he'd move himself.

Luey was obviously doing yoga in his sleep that night... Notice the high tide mark on his legs, rofl!

And Bryn's sleeping impression of Fred Flintstone... Sadly, I have to wake him in a few minutes to go pick his brothers up from school.

My grubby little boy :)...

Misogyny and Misandry

There is a thread on a mainstream parenting forum which begs the question; "How can we teach our sons and other people's sons not to be rapists and misogynists?"

I was completely blown away by the question.

I posted to say it was offensive that the assumption in this question is that boys need to be taught NOT to be misogynist or rapists. I was told that was not what was being suggested by the question, but that people wanted to discuss how to reduce the *likelihood* of boys becoming misogynists and rapists.

I wonder what the response would have been to the question, "How can we teach our daughters and other people's daughters not to be sluts and bitches?" (which is a comprobable generalisation about women)???

ARGH! Does this strike anyone else as simply IGNORANT??? Am I alone in being offended by the notion that boys need to be taught how to NOT be misogynists and rapists.

I argued that if a boy child was brought up in a family that was loving and respectful they could not become a misogynist (a woman hater), because they would learn from being loved and respected to love and respect.

ALL families should be loving and respectful, so were the family representatives on this thread admitting that in having to make a concerted EFFORT to teach their boys NOT to be women haters and rapists that their family was lacking in love and respect???

I asked if, given that boys need to be taught not to be misogynists (because obviously it's innate, at least according to this group of respondents), should we not also be concerned with preventing our daughters from becoming misandronists?

Of course, I had to go looking for that word, because you NEVER hear of misandry. I don't think this is because misogyny is rampant (as the opening poster suggested) and misandry simply doesn't exist. I feel it has more to do with women more readily pointing the finger at men who don't do dishes and calling them misogynists than men pointing the finger at women and calling them misandronists...

I'm not disputing the existence of misogyny. Not for a second. I'm pretty sure my father boarders on this himself after a couple of scotches, I'm just offended at the suggestion that women need to take a defensive stance with their sons to prevent them becoming rapists because they see women treated poorly on tv.

Misogynists don't spring from loving and respectful families. By loving and respectful, I mean all the members of the family loving and respecting one another.

Also, if you view you child as potentially dangerous, won't you treat them that way, won't they internalise that view of themselves and then live up (down) to that expectation of who they will be for the rest of their lives.

If you view your son as a potential misogynist, won't you, as his mother, be on the defensive when he ignores a request from you, or doesn't offer to do the dishes, or says something dumb like, "girls smell" at the age of six... If you then jump on him every time he transgresses, isn't there a risk that he WILL NOT feel loved and respected for the person he is, and then be MORE likely to become exactly what you fear - a woman hater?

Anyway, I found the question rather depressing and offensive in it's premise. And why aren't there threads like this about little girls? Is it impossible for women to be dangerous misandronists? Obviously not...

Saturday, March 01, 2008

Broaching the subject of homebirth...

After a lot of umming and aahing a bit on how to talk to Dave about my decision to homebirth this time, I finally started the conversation this morning...

Well, sort of...

That is, I indicated that I wanted to have a conversation with him about something that he might not like, with regards to the birth, but something that was going to happen. I think he probably has a pretty good idea already what that something is. He asked if we had to have the conversation right at that moment (in the middle of morning chaos with the boys and with him going out on an VERY RARE outings with a few mates), and I said absolutely not (I'd rather not have the conversation at all, just get on with it, yk)... So, he said we could put it on the back burner for now.

And that was that...

A little while later he came back with this following story of a woman who gave birth on an Indian train toilet - it's scary, but it ends well!

http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20080228/od_nm/india_toilet_dc

So, now I'm thinking, maybe he's going to be ok with this, hahaha! Or maybe that is just wishful thinking on my part.

I wasn't even going to talk with Dave about this until about 20 weeks, but a number of things have convinced me that sooner would be better than later.

  1. My midwife doesn't seem comfortable with calling this a homebirth yet, as Dh isn't on board, so she keeps reitterating that this doesn't need to be considered a homebirth until the moment I decide not to go to the hospital while in labour. I'm sure she is thinking this way, so that we are not in the process of deceiving Dh, and obviously I don't want to deceive him anyway. The thing is, for me, I just need this to BE a homebirth, like from the get go. I don't want this to be a shared care birth with a midwife until I have to make the decision, in labour, to stay home. I want EVERYONE to go into this labour knowing what my goal is, and being clear on that, and supporting that.
  2. Having called Birralee to do a booking in, with the view of having shared care, at least until Dave was on board, and then having to talk with an answering machine and be told they'd get back to me, "in a day or two" and then having them NOT do that... Well, it's kind of made me wonder why I'm bothering, seeing as I don't want to deal with them anyway... It's not that I hate them, they've served me well in the past, it's just like it seems like a waste of my energy to chase them up, when I'd rather just spend time enjoying my pregnancy and planning my homebirth
  3. I don't want to live with the "back of the mind" worry about having to one day sit Dave down and tell him how it's going to be, and deal with his anxiety. I'd rather pull that bandaid off quickly, and then get on with soothing the stinging (Dave's pretty inevitable resisitance). Dave is an intelligent man, who cares about my feelings about things. Also, he now knows two of my friends have birthed at home, and be fine with it. He can talk to my midwife. He can talk to my friend's dh who's wife used the same midwife. He can think on the fact that, besides my first birth - an induction - I've never had to use anyone but a midwife anyway, so why leave home for that...
It'll be ok. Right now, I just want to get all my ducks in a row. For my own peace of mind.

Teenagers and the failing parent...