For a long time, I have been suffering a general malaise. For the first two years of Benedict’s attendance at childcare, we suffered through weeks of sickness from Easter till August. We were all sick for months at a time. And we recovered eventually and 2013 has been better. Except I didn’t really recover. This feeling is not just a simple virus or head ache or pain in the leg. It is a deep seated unspecific feeling. I am not at all at peace within my own skin.
This feeling, right now is part of a life long feeling of dissatisfaction with my physical body. It’s a fine body in many ways. It contains me. It mostly works. It also has some deep limitations. Rubenesque and short waisted. Fair and freckly. Not especially tall. For a long time I had, at best an ambivalent relationship to it. At worst, I really hated it. I am not now at that worst. I have been doing more Pilates, yoga and the odd bit of other stuff. My opinion of myself has been much improved with effort on my part and the reformer which lives up to its name. Yet the malaise persists and is worse right now because I have been sick in bed for two days. Read More
Life is often an endurance test. Sure, there are bright moments when joy fills your heart, when you can re-charge. But often it is a relentless quest. At present, my patience is daily tested by an irrepressible toddler who is now more willful and dastardly than I thought possible. I need to rapidly acquire new skills. They say not to negotiate with small children. But what am I to do with a child who says ‘I’ll cry if you like mama.’ He has me beaten already and we haven’t even started! Read More
Today, being Thursday, I stayed home with my child. That’s how it goes. Thursday rolls around. We wake up, have breakfast, wave goodbye to Robert. Then we fang around a bit and maybe go for a pram walk, to the shops, just do stuff.
In a hectic week, sometime we don’t even get out of our pyjamas. Read More
I have been in a persistent funk lately. Since Easter really. It’s a bloody long time. Read More
One of the great things about being pregnant is that lots of people give you a barrage of advice. All of which conflicts with the last book you read or what the last person you spoke to told you. Some of it is laughable and some of it is reassuring. Some of it useful and some of it just bloody annoying. Breast feed, don’t breast feed. Sleep with your baby, don’t sleep with your baby. Massage your perineum, don’t massage. Pick up your baby. Don’t pick up your baby. Let your baby cry. Don’t let your baby cry. You get the idea.
Besieged by advice
A while ago, in February, I wrote some very black words about motherhood. Black in a way that made it painful to read. I didn’t publish them. I was writing about a black time, from a positive position, but about the very blackest time in my career as a mother. Or what I thought was the blackest time. It seems that I was wrong about that. The black periods come and then recede and then they come again. This is how I experience motherhood. Occasionally, dark storm clouds roll in.
Benedict 6 days old
Tomorrow I return to work.
I haven’t been to work since Friday 13 November 2009. Boy was I ready to not go to work anymore that week. I was quite pregnant. I’d had last minute projects heaped on me. My staff were mournfully staring at me and occasionally breaking into not helpful little speeches about how they would miss me. Colleagues came and wrote suggestions on my whiteboard for my weeks post work, but before baby – massages, haircuts, eyebrow waxes, movies. People came past making jokes about seeing my toes – like I couldn’t! Well, I could, if I sat down. Read More
You may have read about my return to work. You may also have read my Massive Rant about Consumer Goods. Today I am grateful that my return to the workplace will be *ah hem* a well supported one. I have just returned from one of Canberra’s finest retail establishments, laden down with new underwear. Read More
2010 has been one of the longest and most difficult years of my life. It is, without doubt, the year I have had the least sleep. I am tired to the bone. Tired in a way that a week of solid nights’ of sleep will only partly remedy. I read the lovely Kerri Sackville’s blog post The Never Ending Weary. I was nodding furiously and wishing I could be in bed while reading it. Kerri has carefully categorised her tiredness. My tiredness is just the kind you have in the first year of your child’s life, with the added extra of one or two other complications life throws at you, simultaneously. Read More
10 December 2009 - 38 weeks
This is a transcription of a letter I wrote to my baby on 10-12-2009
I am sitting in Silo having some lunch. I just had my 38 week appointment with Philippa, the midwife. The baby’s head is now engaged which means it’s not long to go at all.
It gave me a very special feeling to know that you are really coming now. It wont be long and I will get to meet you for the first time. I am very excited now.
It is extremely hard to sleep and you are running out of room. In the night your wriggling keeps me awake, It reminds me that you’re there and getting ready to come into our lives. You have been present but hidden like a deep secret that is slowly slowly being revealed. I wonder what you might be like? What colour eyes you’ll have? How little you might be?
I saw a lot of new-born babies at the hospital today and they look tiny and pink with little twig like legs. You will be like them. Only better!
All the preparation is finally nearly finished. Everything is ready in your room. Christmas is fast approaching but it is not nearly as exciting as the thought of you being born. Soon I will be able to cuddle you and see you and smell your new-born baby smell.
With love, your mama x