Hello Everybody ….

Sometimes I feel sorry for Kennith, he never knows what he is coming home to.  The thing that I admire about him is he thinks on his feet and does not show fear (much) in the face of a potential massacre.

I try not to lose control at home with the kids – for me it a very slippery road to drinking two bottles of wine and screaming profanity at the neighbours, so I do attempt to contain myself, we live in a reasonably good neighbourhood and all.

I usually try to keep a “happy disposition” thing going.  It is a total farce, but I give it a go none the less.  I dash from work to fetch the kids, and the truth be told I am quite excited about seeing them.  Each day I drive the distance from my office to fetch Connor and Georgia.  I try to put on my happy face and really want to give them the impression that they are dealing with a competent mother who may get voted on to the PTA.

Georgia is usually an easy pick up.  She is such a happy little soul, that when I fetch her she is all love and hugs and dirty pants.  She hops in to the car and off we go.  There might be a small wobbly about her eating her lunch in the car 45 minutes before dinner, but we have that fairly contained.

Connor however is like dealing with a surly teenager and he is only 8 years old.  I go in to school bracing myself, as it can be a little challenging (she says politely.)

He will either be chipped off that I arrived too early, or too late – I can never quite work out the correct timing that coincides with his need to play with his mates.  So we get in the car, there may or may not be sulking at this stage.

The drive home is an exercise is patience and good motherhood skills that I fail daily.  It will usually start with Connor asking to do something that he knows I am going to say no to “Mom can I fly my kite in the electrical storm?” “Mom, can I please watch WWF on television naked?” “Mom, I know it is 8 degrees outside, but may I please swim?” “Mom, I know there is a cooked meal at home waiting for us, but can we stop at McDonald’s” 

Unfortunately what ever I say no to is actually irrelevant, because it will just pitch him in to the next request which he knows I will so no to – which leads to the negotiating segment of our little road show. 

By the time I pull into the garage, I have Connor sulking or in full-fledged crying.  Georgia may or may not be crying – by the time we get home it is all a bit of a catastrophe, and we do not actually get out of the car as much as we fall out of the car in various stages of anger and frustration.

Getting kids in the house and to sit down for dinner has its own set of challenges.  A side effect of the fighting is that by now I have probably banned television and am so desperate for a large glass of wine and a lie down, that I just want to kill.  Isabelle is tetchy because I am tetchy – she refuses to be put down so she is firmly implanted on my hip.  I am trying to warm a bottle for her while I am making wild gestures in the air with my free hand (as you do when you are trying to threaten children to finish their food or else.)

I am watching the clock tick by as each minute brings me closer to getting this lot into bed and having a moment for my head to stop ringing.  Usually at about this point Kennith will come walking in (late from work – again) saying something chirpy like “Hello family – how is everyone?!”

Shame …..

The one about the Anesthetist …..

I deal with things well if I am given time to digest them and work them over in my mind.  I can pretty much do anything given the time to mentally prepare.  I however do not react well to being put on the spot.  For this reason and this reason alone, the odds of me winning “The Weakest Link” are remote at the best.

While pregnant with my third child, I really enjoyed the pregnancy – or shall I say I lived in the moment through the pregnancy. I enjoyed each week and the development and the changes in me.  Sure there were parts were I felt pretty grim, and I am sure bitched and moaned because I was so sore, but I lived the experience.

The experience I shunned was the birth.  I had experienced two elective c-sections and they were both fine, there really was no problem.  It was an odd experience in terms of feeling the sensations, but not feeling the pain, but overall it was a good experience.  For some strange reason, I decided that I would not mentally deal with the birth the third time around. I would keep blocking it out and deciding than I would deal with it later.

I was busy planning, and organizing and all of that, but decided that when I went on maternity leave – before I had the baby – I would spend a few days allowing myself to think about it and deal with it.  Well, it seemed I didn’t.

Even on the day I was going to hospital – I spent my time planning and organizing what would happen with the house and the kids in my absence.  I just took no cognizance of how they were going to get her out and that process.

Even at the hospital in my “gown that opens the wrong way” I quietly sat there talking to Kennith about other things.  They came along and took my blood pressure and gave me a little tranquiliser – bless – and still I put it totally out of my mind.

Wheeling me down the passage to the theatre, started to set off little alarms in my head, as my body was going “er brain, you have not mentioned this part ….. we are getting a little concerned here…er brain, BRAIN are you even there??”

Right up to pre-op I was lying on the trolley bed and trying not to deal with what was going to be the inevitable proc ess, slowly, slowly the panic started to set in.  I was trying to look really calm and relaxed as I had Kennith there and my friend Dave who was going to do some photos.

I think the final straw the broke the camel’s back was the anesthetist.  You know how they come over and reassure you, and tell you it’s all going to be fine.  Not this guy.  He came over and asked a few questions, which I duly answered.  Then he started to explain to me all the things that could go wrong – including the fact that a spinal block doesn’t always work.

It pretty much had a similar effect to police firing bullets into a crowd in the hope of calming them!  Do you think at Riot Control 101 – there is a class where the lecturer does role play where they police fire bullets into a crowd and they calmly go and take their seats??

After the anesthetist left, my sanity seemed to leave the room at the same time.  They wheeled me in and then they prep you for the spinal block, so it is you, anesthetist guy and anesthetist nurse person.  By some act of mercy, my OBGYN came in to the surgery and asked if he could stay there and then he held my hand and let me cling to him while they jabbed a giant needle into my spinal coloumn.

Any semblance of restraint and comfort left me about then – things start to move swiftly once that is done and you have lost feeling in your legs.  They lie you down, pop up that screen, and suddenly a large group of theatre people enter the room and everyone starts doing things.  Moving trays, wiping me with iodine, putting blue/green sheets everywhere and just being busy productive people.

My anesthetist guy suddenly became my best friend, as he was the guy who single handedly was going to be responsible for me not feeling pain!

I started to panic – like really panic.  Kennith was holding my hand, or I was grabbing his arm – I can’t recall now.  But I just recall being panicked.  I felt like something was going to go terribly wrong – what I am not sure, but I did not feel ready for them to do anything.  My heart rate picked up and the anesthetist guy gave me an oxygen mask and tried to bring my heart rate down.

I was telling Kennith to make them stop.  Kennith looked over the curtain and explained that they had gone a bit far, and they sort of had to finish.  I was so anxious and just wanted to sit up and go “Ookaai everyone, let’s stop, take a breath, calm ourselves and talk a bit ………….” Clearly none of that was happening, what was happening was they were cutting through what felt like my entire body, and then the pulling started.

The not-so-funny-part was I know this part, I am well verses in this, I’ve been there, got the t-shirt and went back to get the commemorative silver spoon.  But because my little brain had not decided to deal with this and had instead packed this issue in a box, and kicked it under the bed, I was in full fledged panic mode.

It really was one of the more terrifying experiences of my life.  There was nothing about the procedure that was bad, I had just chosen not to deal with it and prepare myself to go through it. It is strange how your mind is such a strong controlling force when you experience something, and has a direct effect on how you experience that moment.

Lesson learnt:   Stop procrastinating and deal with your stuff – I was going to say shit, but decided not to – for your own sanity.