Thin line

I dumped my brain on here the last few days. I haven’t done that in a while, I try not to. It makes people feel uncomfortable. It makes me feel weird.

I want people to understand that the little things each day shit me just like the next person but I also want none of us to forget that while we bitch about picking the slow queue again in the post office or the idiot driver who pulls left to turn right (what the FUCK is wrong with people) there are so many bigger fish to fry.

Sure, I spend a large portion of my day trying to ignore the worries and stresses I have about Oscar.

Sure I, as a mother, spend an inordinate amount of time worrying about my boys, particularly Felix as he hits high school and enters a decade of becoming a man all while negotiating puberty, school work, who he wants to be, believing in himself, becoming more responsible, comprehending consequences on a far grander scale that what happens if you flog your brother again, having fun.

I didn’t really have fun as a teenager, my life was a pretty intense one with mum working her arse off and dad being absent but expectant all at the same time. When it all went pear shaped one of my aunts told me I had to grow up now, be responsible for mum, to be sensible and to help. Having fun and being a ‘typical teenager’ doesn’t really come into action when someone says that to you when you’re 11. I was the good Christian Girl going to not one but THREE youth fellowships (really covering all bases) and while it truly did get me through a lot of my teenage rage the pay off was guilt. I look back and think much of my adolescence was spent holding my breath. For the next bad thing to happen, for not being good enough, for letting people down.

Where do these emotions come from? I think they largely come from self, I can see it in Felix, but they are then compounded by external factors.

Fast forward a few years.

Fast forward to now.

I just can’t shake this feeling that I have done it all wrong. I mean, who the hell at almost 40 lives with their mother? Who at almost 40 has to ask for a hand-out from their in-laws to pay for car repairs? Who at almost 40 reduces three of their children’s bank accounts to zero to pay for car registration?

 

I’m doing it all wrong.

 

Where did I imagine my life to be at this stage?

Well, not living rent-free with my mother for one.

Not living pay-packet to pay-packet for another.

Not having to accept charity from friends.

 

Someone said to me the other day that accepting charity from others, help from people is about being humble and that having humility is the hardest virtue to learn.

 

In the last two weeks people have:

– looked after and cared for my children unconditionally

– picked up my kids from school and pre-school and looked after them for me without question

– texted me to say they’re having my kid over for a play, no discussion entered into (so so good)

– dropped off food parcels for my family including homemade dessert

– dropped off food parcels for me, to me, in the hospital

– brought me chai lattes at the hospital and hung out to talk shit and make me laugh

– taken my kids to and from footy practice

– dropped off a toiletries and cleaning products care package – anonymously. With one of those double Cadbury Family chocolate blocks in it. That I’ve hidden. And won’t be sharing. Maybe.

– sent us a crate of Gourmet Dinner Service meals that I keep looking at and bursting into spontaneous tears over. Because re-entry into family life after 12 days at hospital is just as hard, in some respects, as 12 days in hospital.

– sent me texts and tweets and Facebook shout-outs telling me you’re thinking of us, willing us a swift trip home

 

I have been humbled by all of it. Blown Away. Driven to tears at people’s love for us, for me. Bolstered by people’s generosity of heart and spirit.

I know we are blessed, that I am blessed to have a world so full of love and friendship. Plenty have pointed out to me they wish they had family and friends to help them out in times of need (subtext I am so lucky) and they need not fear me not realising, appreciating and being infinitely grateful to have so many holding on tight to the safety net under me, ready to catch me as I fall.

I know everyone has wanted to do this because I know when I see a friend struggling I want to do something, anything to ease their burden just a little.  Sometimes it’s words, sometimes something I’ve made, sometimes my hilarious company. (Remember when I was funny?)

 

So why is it sitting so uncomfortably with me?

Somehow all this makes me feel like I’ve failed.

Having to accept help is about having failed, of not being able to manage, of not coping.

I feel I’ve let everyone down.

That I have done it all wrong.

There are so SO many should haves swirling around in my head.

 

We have some family friends who are the most beautiful people in the world, but bad things happen to them all the time – a child off the rails, poor health, financial stress. There is always a feeling of unfairness when they are talked about, that they don’t deserve all this, why does it happen to them?

I do NOT want to be that family people talk about.

And yet I totally know we are.

I DO NOT want to be the sympathy card. The “Poor Kim”.

SO I just want you all to know I won’t let you down.

I will try harder.

You will not have to keep picking me up  or carrying me.

I will not let you down.

I will not fail.

 

Onward.

 

 

Eating the elephant, bite by bite.

I think this post might need a public health warning – that here be deep thoughts and reflections. It is not meant to be depressing but just to say there is so much to be done. That indeed, every small thing each of us does matters. That one sponsoring of a child or volunteering with Youth off the Streets or baking a cake for a friend who’s feeling down – it all matters.

But I also think we need to be demanding more from our leaders – thumping our fists until we get brave, visionary leaders willing to make the hard hard decisions and manufacture real change from the top down. A fish rots from the head – great leadership equals a great nation, likewise lacklustre, short-sighted and self-serving bureaucrats gives us greyness.

I’m kinda sick of the greyness.

||

I haven’t been that nice to my kids these last few days. With the good of reduced meds – no side-effects, improved libido, a return of my creativity, ENERGY – comes the bad – quick to anger, emotions ON THE LOOSE.
I have joked that I now realise why I was medicated – to be able to cope with our living arrangement and Oscar. But I’m not really joking.
I have been apologising to the boys for me being angry so easily. So often. For the poison that can just roll off my tongue before I even realise it.
I have been really struggling to be patient with Oscar.
Today he totally wigged out. A complete and utter screaming, crying, wailing, fighting mess of a meltdown. He didn’t know why and does not have the capacity to reign it in. It went on all day, from around 8am this morning until the last teary wake-up he had at around 11pm.
By that time I was just crying big lumbering tears with him, incapable of understanding what the fuck was going on, feeling so so guilty for just how short I’ve been with him this last week, my heart aching for him and his own confusion as to why he was behaving like this.
Someone had posted a picture to Facebook yesterday with the tagline, ‘my child is not giving me a hard time, they are having a hard time’ and HOLY CRAP PEOPLE why not administer some physical blunt force trauma to me as well because the emotional stuff is well and truly covered.

::

This last week had my friend Eden in Africa with World Vision.
Just like that.
She was in Niger to see – and thereby raise awareness – the famine that is gripping the country and the plight of its people.
Many people commented and rallied around Eden, pledging support and sponsoring children.
Doing something.
She does not profess to have the answers or the solutions. The problem is bigger than huge.
I don’t understand how this has been allowed to happen, over and over again.
Famine, war, death, more famine, more trauma and on it goes.
Oscar has a friend who comes from Africa, his birth nation I am not sure but he and his brothers and sisters were brought to Australia to be by their mother’s side, who herself had been brought here for medical treatment by a Catholic missionary service.
I see them here, their mother now dead, being raised by people with so much love in their heart, so much generosity of spirit they are raising four children, three of which have additional needs when they were at a stage of their life their own children were just flying the coop.
These children, full of laughter and life. Who would they be, what would have become of them had these remarkable people not come into their lives.

Can you imagine being a mother watching her children die in front of her from a lack of food or water? or from a completely treatable, nay PREVENTABLE, disease?

At the blogging conference last week I was reduced to weeping tears from one mother standing in front of us sharing her story of her son Avery, who died inside her.
One mother.
One tragedy.

Multiply it by HUNDREDS of THOUSANDS.

I haven’t sponsored a child, I haven’t donated money. I’m really conflicted over this. Yes, each of us doing something small adds up to something big. But. In my brain there is a but. What are the governments doing in these countries? What is happening at an international political level?

I think each of us doing whatever we can is critically important. It keeps us engaged with the world on a much deeper and beneficial level. But if it’s just us with pick-axes while the powers that be sit by in their idling front-loaders, we’re not going to get very far. The bandaid on a cankerous sore.

So much at stake by shaking up the status quo.

A few weeks back Four Corners ran a program about the brutal austerity measures being metted out in Ireland. About deals struck which somehow see the people who can least afford it now being the ones made to ‘tighten the belt’ to make up for the gross excesses and greed AND MISTAKES MADE at the top of the pile.

Isn’t that like punishing your kid because you’re tired?

The pressure, the expectation for us as individuals to be doing something is not misguided, I believe it ties firmly to my own political belief that no one gets left behind, but that it stands on the battlefield for humanity without the back-up of the senior forces that are world leaders and nations of power just seems unfair and downright unacceptable.

Every day everyday people stand up and make a difference. I’m just so sick of people in positions of political power and clout not doing the same thing.

::

Today we drove down to my Dad’s and Chef made me listen to a podcast called Two Chefs – or some such – out of the States.
Did you know, that of ALL the pork and chicken produce sold in the USA, only ONE PER CENT of it has been produced in natural surrounds – ie, outdoors, SUNLIGHT, room to move.
ONE FUCKING PER CENT.
In Australia it’s still ONLY THREE.
ONLY three per cent of the chicken or pork products sold in our country have been raised in a NATURAL environment, with SUNLIGHT.
In the US, the Defence Forces have reported that recruits are not reaching the fitness standards within the timeframe that they should be because they are NOT GETTING ENOUGH NUTRIENTS in their diet.
In the US there was an eColi outbreak in an organic spinach crop. How could an effluent born disease be transmitted by plant matter? Because an intensive feedlot nearby had contaminated the water table. That’s how.
In the third world they’re malnourished because of famine. In the developed world they’re fat but malnourished because of corporate greed.

++

A few weeks back I went to an event in Sydney’s gorgeous Centennial Parklands to learn about the Vicks Breathe for Life is supporting Save The Children in Bangladesh by training local women to become nurses and providing immunisations and antibiotics to bring down the dramatic child mortality rate in that country.

//

I watched Samson and Delilah for the first time last night. I spent most of the movie feeling nauseous – for the petrol sniffing, for the brutal reality it portrayed.

::

There is so much that needs to be done, so much.
Violence.
Greed.
Abuse.
Poverty.
Hunger.

Irrespective of where you live.

//

In 2009-2010 there were MORE THAN 286,000 reported cases of suspected child abuse in Australia. There are different reporting thresholds for “risk of harm” and “risk of significant harm” – wouldn’t it be a relief to just fall into the former rather than the latter.
Surreal.
From that 286,000, just over 131,000 cases were finalised, there were 46,187 substantiated cases of child abuse and just under 36,000 kids were in out-of-home care.
46,187 substantiated cases of child abuse.
Emotional abuse
Neglect
Sexual abuse
Physical abuse.
I’m trying to imagine how you can visualise that number. I guess imagine a Swans game in Sydney at the SCG versus a Top 8 team. That many.

Here we are trying to keep kids alive in third world countries from hunger and disease while the flip side sees a developed rich country such as our own we actually abusing their children ourselves?

I just don’t get it.

So I’m not going to sponsor a child in Africa, not because I don’t think it would make a difference but because for me, there are children here than need my help, whatever that may be and in whatever form it may take. That’s how I want to help.

::

There’s just so much to do.

No one gets left behind.

Onward.

Adding value to me. (updated!)

Sponsored by Nuffnang

Last week we looked at ways to tighten the belt with the household budget. In this, the second in my series of posts talking about the idea of ‘value’, we shall be looking at ways to add value for you. They don’t necessarily cost money (in fact, most of them don’t cost anything – as is my constant quest), they don’t even have to take that much time, but they are 10 ways to add value to your life. To add value to who you are and how you feel. Read on!

My psychiatrist once told me that being a parent and a partner involves a hell of a lot of sacrifice and a mountain of compromise and you can only sustain that reality for so long. He reassured me that if I was to be sane, if my mood was to stabilise in a reliable way and if I was to be happy I had to build things into my life that were solely for me. Things that made making those sacrifices and compromises acceptable.

How many times do you say, ‘I don’t have time’?

How often do you mutter, ‘There’s just not enough hours in the day’?

How normal is it for you to think that there is nothing in your life that is just for you?

You know where these thoughts lead don’t you. They are at the top of the slippery slope to the realm of ‘I’m not worth it’, ‘no one cares’, ‘I don’t matter’. And well, some of us know that once you’re sliding down that hill, clawing your way back to the top is beyond arduous. And ugly.

For years – from when I was a tween actually – I have sort comfort in food. Baking and cooking for others made me happy. But it was a double-edged sword in that while it made me happy it also made me fat which made me bulimic and on it went.

It has only been this year, THIS YEAR, in fact, in the last three months that I’ve accepted I have to find something else as well as baking to be my time out, my thing. And it had to be something that didn’t cost anything. Or very little. So monthly massages, or pedicures or manicures or facials or subscriptions or so on were  simply not an option.

So here are some tips you can try to add value to your day. To make you feel better, to make you feel special, to revive your soul.

1. Get up off the lounge. Turn the TV off. Put the laptop down. Back away from the computer. Now go outside. No seriously. Go outside. What do you see? Is the sky blue? Is the sun shining? How large is the moon? Are there stars in the sky? What’s happening in your garden or on your street? TAKE IT IN.  It can take all of two minutes. Of course, it’s better if you can take 10 but I guarantee you it does wonders.

2. Are you doing any exercise? If you are, snaps to you. If you’re not, like I wasn’t up until 4 weeks ago then you must. Listen, it doesn’t need to be gut-wrenching, sweat-inducing heart-stopping madness (although this is what I’m doing at the moment to lose weight) it just needs to get you moving. And get this. It’s half an hour. 30 measly minutes. So see Point 1 up there, put on some sneakers and just go.

I was the queen of ‘I don’t have time’ but you know what, put those kids in a stroller or hell, get the bigger ones walking/riding/scootering with you. You will be amazed at how ‘just getting out of the house’ makes you feel better.

Once you start it will only take a couple of weeks before your body will start telling you that you need to go.

Remember this, it only takes four weeks to form a habit. Four teensy tiny weeks. Get to it.

3. Make something. Making things gives you a sense of satisfaction and achievement that I am yet to find matched by anything else. Oh LOOK, you don’t need to be artistic or crafty, it can be as simple as buying some card, a stamp and making your own cards to give to people for birthdays or Christmas (mind you, I haven’t done Christmas cards – made or bought – in years. Not since that year I did about 40 of them then never got to post them until February the following year.)

And by ‘make something’ it can cover anything – get in the kitchen, try a new recipe for dinner or something yummy for afternoon tea. Something that busts you out of your rut that is ‘pizzas for dinner on Mondays’.

4. Pick up the phone and call a friend. This year I made a concerted effort to stay in touch more effectively with friends not just via Facebook or Twitter. Actual conversations! I know! It has been delightful.

5.  Get together. Meet up with friends. Not with kids on tow. Either go out to dinner or a movie or for a walk together. The most effective stress-release for women with children? GETTING TOGETHER WITH OTHER WOMEN IN SIMILAR SITUATION.

6. SCHEDULE. Now look, I know. We all want spontaneity and excitement but if you have two working adults with any number of children (or even without children I might add) you have.to.schedule.  Write in when you’re going to go for that walk/run/swim. Make a date with your friend not just a ‘we must get together’, write down what day you’re going to call that person and so on and so forth. Then treat those as you would a doctor’s appointment or meeting – you wouldn’t just no-show to those, so don’t no-show to these. Hell, we even schedule in ‘special times’.

7. Go to bed. Are you reading blogs at midnight? Tweeting at 11pm? GO TO BED. The best quality deep sleep comes before midnight. You need good quality sleep for mood regulation. Enough said.

So there you go – they all seem so obvious don’t they. So innocuous. But if you do them it makes such a difference.

I’d love to know what do you do in your day for you – what is the one (or more!) activity you do that tells you ‘I matter’?

This post was sponsored by KIA. To celebrate the great value of KIA’s new car – the Cerato Hatch, a website has been launched so you and your family can get some great value offers and deals. Check out my favourite deal for this week:  Purchase the Patiomaster HD 4 burner BBQ for only $499 and receive a BONUS 3 piece outdoor setting valued at $149!

Tightening the belt

Sponsored by Nuffnang

Most of you know that this year has been all about tightening the household budgetary belt and you know, we’ve actually done incredibly well. I mean, we haven’t saved anything but we have not spent beyond our means for a whole 11 months. Pretty amazing huh.

So I thought it would be the perfect place to start in my series looking at the concept of ‘value’. Most of these are completely obvious and there are probably loads more ways we could be saving money so please, share your tips via comments too OK?

allconsuming’s Top 10 ways to tighten the family budget

  1. Set a weekly menu plan and shop specifically to that list. Oh, and back away from the brand names.
  2. Buy a decent brand of coffee and/or tea and cease and desist buying one every time you leave the house.
  3. Have people over for morning or afternoon tea rather than meeting at the coffee shop. Making a slice or cake or batch of biscuits is far more economical than the $$ you will dole out at a cafe.
  4. Stop buying magazines. Depending on your want (fashion, food, gossip, lifestyle/home) there are plenty of blogs and/or online options which.are.free.
  5. Review all your plans – phone plans, pay-tv plans, insurance plans, utilities – take the time to investigate better options. You don’t need to do them all at once, just tackle one at a time. We took a long hard look at our pay-tv subscription, questioned what we would miss versus how much it cost us and well, we ditched the whole thing. The only thing we miss: Grand Designs, AFL, SpongeBob. Hardly life-altering or unbearable.
  6. This one has been tough but absolutely necessary: no more take-aways. I mean, take-away for seven people, five of those essentially eating adult portions is incredibly expensive. Instead we try to really create variety with weekly dinners at home. I must say, I really yearn for one night a week where I say, ‘let’s order take-away’.
  7. Review extra-curricular activities – can it be done better, how much is too much. Now this is a bit laden as it cuts right to the core of giving your kids a range of experiences and activities. We had to reach the decision that each child got 1-2 activities they could do, ideally a sport and an arts orientated one. Oscar’s taken care of mostly through free activities due to his special needs, Felix has done drama and football. Jasper has just picked up dance and Grover is none the wiser at this stage but I think the two little fellas will do gymnastics next year.  I ditched the swimming lessons for the little boys which some would say was foolish. But really, having done swimming lessons with three of the boys surely I had taken on enough to be able to teach them water safety when we’re in the pool at my in-laws or over at the ocean pool or in the surf the several times a week we are there during summer? Instead I’m investigating a week-long intensive option over the school holidays as Jasper is now in need of some stroke lessons. That and the swimming club offers free lessons (gold coin donation) at the ocean pool every weekend during summer. Tick.
  8. It’s not where you shop but how you wear it. No really. It is.
  9. Plan plan plan. Life throws enough curve balls so let’s try and limit their impact. I have a list of bigger ticket items that are going to need replacing at some stage in the near future. Then I keep track of prices of that item and how often there are sales on. I’ve also signed up at two online sales websites: brandsExclusive and buyinvite and if something comes up there which is on my list it may get ticked off (if the price is right as it were).
  10. Homemade is not a dirty word. Now look, I know many of you are not crafty and do not cook/bake, but I do (definitely more of the latter than the former) and so this is a case of playing to my strengths. If you know me then you just have to accept that a birthday gift or a thank you present or a contribution to a hamper or some such is going to be made by me. Yes, I will try and make it look nice but it will always taste good and was made with love. I reckon that’s far nicer than another bloody teatowel/vase/dust-collector.

This post was sponsored by KIA. To celebrate the great value of KIA’s new car – the Cerato Hatch, a website has been launched so you and your family can get some great value offers and deals. Check out my favourite deal for this week: Purchase the Mountain Buggy Swift from Baby Village.com.au and receive a FREE Storm and Sunshade valued at $79.90 at www.getmorevalue.com.au

Precious brain space: a case study in anxiety. Or, how to become a nutbag in one internal monologue

Anxiety is like that Jessica* you went to school with who had great hair, a figure, no acne and a boyfriend. It just never.goes.away. When you’re having a laugh with your friends she just breezes by leaving a heady waft of impulse. When you’re having a bad day you see her, surrounded by Jessicettes, laughing, radiant, confident.

I never had anxiety before 2006. Seriously. Depression yes. Anxiety no.
Let’s just say, anxiety sucks like big fat hairy trucker’s balls.
No, it does.
Hold that image.
HOLD IT.

When Jasper was seven months old I had a crash and burn – I’d been back at work full time for three months and basically couldn’t hold all those balls in the air anymore. I crashed and went back onto my meds. My meds that had helped me be normal me for quite some time but this time they didn’t want to play and instead of making my internal pendulum swing nice and steady they just grabbed that pendulum and hit it again and again and again against the inside of my skull. I got sick, I fucked up at work, I would wake at 3am in the grip of what I thought was a heart attack that would last, like some perverted contraction, until 5am and then another one would hit from nowhere and last for a few hours and I was all – what fresh hell is this?

It was, as my shrink would delight in telling me, anxiety. He also told me – after I’d told him that it was mighty suckful and I didn’t want to play with Anxiety anymore – that in something like 98 per cent of successful suicides the people had suffered chronic anxiety.

That’s what we call around these parts a no shit Sherlock comment.

Anyway, we changed my meds and the anxiety disappeared in literally about 8 hours. Just like that.

Then I fell pregnant again, and a few things at work went south and well Anxiety has been sticking its head over the fence asking for a cup of sugar or just plain rubber-necking more often than I care to admit.

And then I do admit it and well folks, every single day I wake up and start my day in the grip of an anxiety attack. And it is pretty much with me all the live long day.**

For those of you who are sane not familiar with Anxiety imagine that sensation when someone comes up behind you and scares the crap out of you.
That sensation all your organs are fleeing your body.
That immediate blinding panic.
The momentary nauseousness.
All those things that last a microsecond – just long enough to then make you want to beat the crap out of the person who crept up in the first place – are the best way I can describe Anxiety.
Except it lasts for hours.
Oh sure, it crescendos here, quietens down there, but there is this pervading sense of impending doom.
A feeling of blind panic just rippling beneath your skin.
Shallow, fast breathing without even realising it.
A tightness in your chest which does not abate no matter how hard you concentrate on some fucking meditation that does fuck all.
And here’s the cherry, it isn’t really about anything at all.
You’re not anxious about an outcome or a phone call or a meeting or a person.
You’re just fucking anxious.
How fucked up is that?
About as many times as I can type fucked before I know it’s making some of you wince.

And here’s the thing.
I still function.
I cognitive therapy my arse through each day.
Just one step at a time.
Let’s just get the kids breakfast. Or get that washing on. Or hang that washing out. Maybe vacuum again. Let’s get dressed. Let’s clean that toilet. Let’s write that shopping list. Let’s make that dinner.
I know that the most dangerous thing I can do at the moment is stop.
So I chunk up my day, my morning, the next hour.
And achieve something.
All while feeling something really bad is about to happen.
While concentrating on not clenching my teeth (that just ache from being clenched all.the.time).
Focusing on the tone I am using with the boys.
Remembering to smile and laugh at the right places.
Keep listening when Felix tells me about the latest Pokemon he’s captured? raised? won? snore…
Not snapping at Oscar when he asks for something to eat again.
Realising I need to parent Jasper as he stands at the kitchen bench eating sugar by the spoonful and that yes there will be tears but this time it’s necessary.
And so on and so forth.
All those things that just happen naturally and flow in the normal course of a day have to be thought about, actioned when you’re in the middle of some complicated tap routine with Anxiety.
It gives me a glimpse into what it must be like to have Asperger’s or Autism – it makes me understand the energy these people have to expend just to function in everyday society. God forbid they wanted to enjoy any of it. No wonder they jig out every so often.

So while I wait for my appointment to see my shrink (and no I can’t get in any earlier and yes I’m on the wait list for any appointment that comes up between now and next Friday – there’s a lot of us crazies out there OK) my brain is engaged in something like this:

We need more money and the only way we’re going to get more money is if I find a new job or get paid more in the job I do which is never going to happen as I’ve now been looked over for three internal promotions which is really saying something and so that means find a new job.
Ok so seek.com or mycareer.com here we come. Oh that sounds like fun, no, no good, it only pays forty grand and is for a graduate. I feel like a graduate in this stop start career of mine. I wish I wasn’t so competitive, or a perfectionist. Iwish I could just be happy in some little job doing my little thing each day. Not searching, not wanting more, not being so insatiable.
OK, so applications in, let’s email a few recruiters, OK done that. Oh look, an interview. A meeting. Wow, you actually put yourself out there rather than thinking about putting yourself out there and you get interest. Who knew. Still, scary. Do not want to have to go through all that crap with a new job – being nice to everyone, not knowing who is the office know-it-all and who is the hotline to the CEO. Where’s the bathroom, do I need my own teacup? Of course I need my own cup, as if I’m using some manky one from the communal kitchen.
But really, is this how I want it? Some job with more responsibility, more time spent commuting, more time trying to fit in homework and band practice in the 10 minutes between me getting home and the kids needing to go to bed? Maybe I need to do this smarter, pick up some freelance gigs and work it that way? Oh who am I kidding – it was an unmitigated failure the last time I did it – no super saved, one year of a crippling tax debt it then took another two years to clear. Forget it. Dumb idea. You have four kids. In Sydney. You’re an idiot. An idealistic idiot who thought it would all be OK. K’s SIL was right – we shouldn’t have had so many kids. While she lives her life in a stunning house with hired help and gorgeous kids and a husband earning a motza. Stupid. I should have done law or economics or something lucrative. Not that I got the marks to get in to do law. Not that I would not have been crushed by my own self-doubt about my ability to do it anyway, surrounded by all those braniacs. So then I should have married a lawyer. Too late for that now.
Anyway, so you want to write a book. You want to be an author is that it. Well what is the point of mourning that lost existence if you don’t even put pen to paper? If you only got one sixth of a way through your Creative Writing Masters to stop? You know all those ideas that pop into your head? Those characters? Write.them.down. You know it’s going to be like owning your own home – it seems unachievable but if you just did tiny bits each and every day, Jesus, each week, then suddenly you’ve almost done it. Just.Start.
GOD.
And the house thing. Well that is the crux of it all isn’t it. You need to earn more to be able to move out to rent something else. OR. You stay where you are and get the job that pays more to save it so you could possibly have a deposit for somewhere for when you relocate to regional NSW or Victoria. If or when you move? Chef is so happy where he is and that’s a first, so why are we going to risk/jinx that? But if we moved then we could afford to buy a house probably in the next five years, as opposed to only when all the parents are dead, which won’t be for about another thirty years. JESUS. What a train-wreck of decisions – or lack of – or carelessness this life has turned out to be.
God this house is filthy. I better hang that load of washing out or it’s going to start to smell. What on earth are we going to have for dinner. We really need to get out and do something today but how? Either Grover or Jasper are down sleeping and we get trapped. I don’t want to interrupt their day sleeps as we’re so close to getting full night-long sleeps from everyone. I’m so tired. Maybe if I just close my eyes for a minute. No, don’t do that, Grover will get into the toilet/cat bowl/cat’s water/shower/laundry/dogs. So tired.
I really need to get Felix’s eyes tested. And make that appointment for Oscar to see a physio. And that new paediatrician. But that’s all money money money. GOD, speech fees are due this week. Health insurance goes out on Thursday. And have the swimming fees gone out? OH NO I’ve got to change their lessons back to Thursdays not Tuesday and Saturday. We really need more money. I need to find a new job.

And so on and so forth.

I posted this earlier today and then pulled it down. For starters I am kinda paranoid you’re all sitting there going, ‘dear LORD this woman is certifiable.’
And for the rest of it I get anxious (hah!) that you’re all just going to tire of me. That there are rolling eyes and lots of ‘tsk’s and ‘oh just get over it’s .
Judgement.

But this is how it is and this is my space and I need to get this shit out.

And you know the weird thing about all this wigging out? I really am OK. No really. I am.

So there you have it.

* with apologies to all adult Jessicas. Who are all probably very nice. No really, I’m sure you are.
** I see my doc next week and yes we will be changing my meds.