I am a turd ….

Clearly I have had a really crappy week!

By the time I get home from my fun at work, I am exhausted.  Not yawn exhausted but my-nerves-are-frayed exhausted.

I arrive home to be assaulted by dust and dirt and usually a contractor who has not arrived to finish what is supposed to be finished.  Which then is an indicator that what ever was going to take x time will now take x+1 day times. (Hey I did HG Algebra I will have you know …. until I dropped to SG, because if I kept up HG, I would never pass Standard 10)

I am not exactly on a go-faster-contractor-go-faster clock or anything, but I do want the contractors to finish so they can spend less time with my family, and well, more time with theirs.  (I could say I want them to fek off and leave me alone, but I was trying to find a more diplomatic way of putting it, as someone recently suggested I might not have the cleanest mouth for a blogger …. with children.)

My patience level is at an all time low, and my ability to interact with people is on the decline.

The kids have not been more (or less) difficult than normal.  The problem is that by the time I have them herded into the car, and I have pulled out of the respective school parking lots, an argument has ensued between the two of them.

This is all standard practice in our drives home.  I can usually switch off a bit, as my brain goes out for a little mental walk about, whilst they bicker about what ever it is that they are bickering about that day.  I am however feeling a little tense and the car drives home feel like agony and an eternity.

This week, I am a little low on resources and this week, I am a bit low on everything including my ability to “act normal” when a normal situation occurs.

I get home and count the minutes until everyone goes to bed, so I can just fall down and go “thank fek I survived another day!”

On Thursday morning Connor was looking for his school shorts.  He asked me where they were.  I responded by getting really angry at him and telling him that he needs to get his things together in the evening and not leave it until the morning and I was blah-blah-blah lecture blah-blah-blah vent.

(My berating him for asking me where they were, did take longer than if I had just told him where they were – I subsequently noted this point!)

Connor then decided he would go and look in the spare room for his shorts.

Problem is that because of the window-framer guys, the kids are bunking together and Isabelle is sleeping in the spare room and not in her room, because there is too much dust and dirt in her room.

Connor walks in to the spare room – Isabelle wakes up, and then starts calling for me.  He solves the problem by leaving the room, and closing the door, which of course (strangely enough) does not make Isabelle lie down and go back to sleep again.

The problem is now I need to stop preparing myself for work.  Go pick her up, change nappy, get bottle, settle her while I am trying to get breakfast for Connor and Georgia, and strain my tea bag in my tea cup –which I desperately need.

My usual routine, is to try to get ready and then go and pick her up out of her cot.

It just makes the morning a bit less complicated, and sort of ensures that I have taken some consideration with my wardrobe – like my shoes matching for instance and I got my bra facing the correct way – I aim just for the small things.

I got annoyed with Connor – and then I screamed at him through clenched teeth: “What the hell is wrong with you! I told you to use your shorts from yesterday, you have now woken up Isabelle! What the hell is wrong with you!

I was really angry, and I was not angry with him, I was angry with the situation I found myself in.

I was angry with my fekn company. I was angry that they did not value me enough to make an alternate plan.

I was angry that I was standing in my shortie jammies in the middle of the kitchen at 6am, and I already had grit and grime under my bare feet.

I was angry that I would not get 10 minutes to drink my tea while I prepare myself mentally to face this day.

I was angry that I had to go to work and continue to act like a mature person when all I wanted to do was curl into a ball and have a good cry.

I was angry that my financial situation is so precarious – though Kennith assures me that it is not.  I am angry that I will now be more of a strain on our financial position, rather than in a position to get us into a better financial position.  I was angry that now I will be more of a burden on Kennith.

I was angry that I had eaten all the damn cupcakes and the bag of Chuckles.

I was angry that there is now this issue with my mother, and I do not know how to resolve it.  I am angry that there is just too much stuff to deal with.

I WAS ANGRY, and I took it out on my eight year old child because he went to look for his school shorts in the room where the washing is kept, and it would make sense that that is where it is.

I feel like such a turd!  Because I was using my anger to have a go at him.  Because his feeling bad, somehow made me feel better (victorious) for about 3 seconds, and then I just felt like a total total turd!

I fetched Isabelle, changed her bum, warmed her bottle, gave her a cuddle while I tried to drink my tea and not mess  any of it on her (to avoid any rush visits to the burn unit at Medi Clinic).

I got dressed, herded the kids in the car and then drove to school while I alternated patting Connor on the head, and resting my hand on his leg (in a non suggestive manner), because I felt like such a stupid horrible f*kwit.

Friday followed, and when I fetched Connor I explained that I was not having the best day in the best week, in the best month, and that I was really horrible to him the day before.

It was not about him, he did nothing wrong.  I was just angry and stupid and was mean to him – and I was really sorry. (I sniffed back a little chunky tear as well)

Connor said: “It’s okay mom, I understand!”

Which of course forced me to explain why it was not okay that I was horrible to him.  But that I loved him and I was still a turd!

Connor likes bum humour, it cheers him up no end.

I would like Kennith to come home now, so this turd can hand over the imaginary reins of my life to him.

(This post was written on Friday, and I only posted it now, so Kennith is back, which is great.)

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Nothing sucks like November ….

I can officially say that November 2010 sucks.

Not like little-tadpoles-sucking-off-the-dead-skin-between-your-toes sort of suck, but total m*ther*cker sort of suck!

The month started with my mother reading my recent blog post, and let’s just say the results are not good.  Nope, pretty bad all around to put it mildly.

Of course we can argue that there was a little psychology at play, as why did I post such a personal post on my blog if I did not want her to read it?

And I may well suggest that the post was more about me and it was on MY blog, and not meant as a passive-aggressive note to her.  I also sort of hoped she would not read it as she is often too busy, and maybe would have skipped that one.

What ever the psychology or explanation, it is done, she read my post.  There is now a certain amount of fall out from that – as you can well surmise.

So what was initially an emotionally puking post, has now turned into a rather larger issue that needs to be dealt with.

If I felt bad before, well that can’t hold a candle to how bad I feel now.  I have not quite been disowned, but let’s say I am outside of the “circle of trust.”

Coming on the back of that, is meeting with my new therapist.  She is lovely and very results-driven, and she wears really sparkly shoes (no, really she does)!

She pushes for decisions, and for me to confront difficult issues in a manner that I have not really experienced before.

Therapists love to chat and chat and chat some more (R825.00 an hour is really great motivation to keep a conversation going).  This one loves to chat, and then cuts to the chase and pushes me to make a plan to move on.

Quite liking her approach – and as said, she is results and task driven, so she is not really wanting me to sit with me on a couch for the next 12 months chatting about life.

That has been really good, and it has helped me see things in a different light and I think also really helped with dealing with some of my relationship issues, as well as seeing how things in my past bear a direct link to how I am reacting to something now.

One of the things she has helped me to address is the way I deal with money.  This also feeds into the way we, as a couple, deal with our finances and how we relate to each other when it comes to money.

It really is powerful stuff – in one session there was more progress with her than I have had in months with other therapists.

(To not detract from the work I have done with other therapists, part of it might be that I am in a different “place” now and maybe  more ready/able to move forward on issues now than I was five years ago.)

My financial position is quite dire – “quite” being the understatement in that sentence.  I really want to say f*cking dire, but I do not think that language would be appropriate.

I have been hiding this from Kennith with a very advanced system of smoke and mirrors.  To cut a long story short, if I was a company I would be in liquidation and as the CEO I might have either run off to the Caymans or putting a sawn-off shot-gun between my teeth.

I am also not “able” to ask for help.

The result is I have been limping along for some time and not letting Kennith know.  He has not been given the opportunity to assist me, as he has not had any idea how bad the situation was.  And I was growing angrier with him each month, because he was not helping me (because he did not know, you get how this cycle is working?)

Each month has got progressively worse for me financially, and I have really been stressed about both the money (and my lack of it) and the deceit.

I find it really hard work to hide things from Kennith, not because he is so awfully clever at figuring things out. But because I have to constantly bite my tongue and not blurt out sh*t that is running around inside my head!

But therapy has helped me out enormously.

Though the financial issue is not a thing of the past, Kennith and I were able to have a reasonable discussion that did not result in me crying in the kitchen – as is often the place of many of my tears and usually signals our past discussions regarding money/finance and related issues.

In addition to the above,  we are renovating our house – part of the house. Having builders and dust, and jackhammers is stressful in anyone’s world.

It has been going on for about six weeks, and I am at that point where I am a little over it.  Every day I get home and the house looks like it was in the siege of Beirut.  There is dust and grit everywhere and I am actually sick of it – like pop another Zoloft sick of it!

I can see the bigger picture that it will be lovely when done.

It is going to be so incredible that we are going to fall on our knees and thank our project manager/builder guy profusely, but right now,  I really want everyone with cement, a wheelbarrow and any other tool to actually just bugger off, and clean up as they go!

(You understand I want them to finish the job and then bugger off.  Buggering off with a half complete job will of course be the thing to tip me right over the edge. Hence I want them to finish TODAY already –  the reality is that we are in for another two weeks minimum.)

Building besides being messy stressful, is also money stressful.  You start to think that you have spent too much money that you actually did not have in the first place. You also start these projects and think well we will just paint the house, next thing you are knocking down walls, putting up electric gates, moving the braai area, changing the stoep, taking out window frames.

So what started as a simple little paint job has turned into an Extreme Home Makeover!

Kennith is stressed because there is this constant outflow of cash.

I am stressed because he is stressed and then I start to panic, because if he is stressing about money, then there is a chance that we will not be able to afford wine on the grocery list, and then I start to panic a bit more!

Last week one of the builders left the side gate open, so my 10 year old Staffordshire Bull Terrier ran away.

I only found out three hours later as I was at my daughter’s concert and no one noticed she was out as the builder (good on you) had just closed the gate after she had bolted and not told anyone.

By the time I knew, she could have been in Port Nolloth already.  She runs pretty fast when she gets her head down, even for a chubby girl.

I have contacted all the necessary.

Some great people have helped me in circulating news about her, but right now it has been a week and no sign of her, and I am fearing the worst.  She is micro-chipped but does not wear a collar (as she would have strangled herself a dozen times) – so the only way she can be traced back to me is if someone takes her into a vet.

I am worried what could have happened to her  I am worried what someone is doing with her.  I am worried she might be hungry or cold, or hungry and cold and hurt!

I feel terribly guilty that I did not take more care and shoot the guy who left the gate open before he left the gate open, so he did not leave the gate open, so I would not have to shoot him!

Then when I felt that possibly November could not actually get much worse – what with being disowned, my dog running away, my dire financial situation being unveiled and the end of my phantom pregnancy, I get called into a meeting earlier this week.

I am always suspicious.

And that is the end of the sentence.

I am always suspicious.

I have sensed for the last two months that all is not right over here in the world of where I work, there is just something going on.

For the last month I have felt a definite shift and it has not been a good one.  I did not know what was going on, but I knew something was and it was leaving me feeling uneasy and skittish.

Of course in my paranoia, everything is about me.  I did something wrong.  I stole the petty-cash. I have been downloading porn.  I have been using too much milk in my tea.  I have been surfing the internet during work hours. (okay that one is true!)

Anyway I get called into a meeting on Tuesday afternoon.

Tip:  If the HR person is ever cc’d on an email where you are asked to attend a meeting, start packing your stuff into a brown box BEFORE the meeting.

To cut a long story short, I was retrenched!

Yes, I too was horrified, probably a bit more than you right now.

It took a lot for me not to throw myself against the leg of the director and scream “why me, why me, I promise to behave, I promise to be good, why me….?”

In the scene in my head I did just that, which made me have a rather disconcerting look on my face as I tried to continue with the meeting in a very adult manner.

It is very hard to act like an adult, and look like you are taking it firmly on the chin when actually you want to scream and drizzle like an eight year old, and cry uncontrollably until you throw up on the board room table.

I sat there attempting to look very demure and mature.

But with all things it was not all about me, there are a number of other staff who are being retrenched.

And though one should take comfort that we “are all in this together” and stand around singing “someone`s sleeping, lord, kumbaya, oh, lord, kumbaya” the reality is that at the end of January I will not have a paycheck, and so will 16 or so of my fellow work mates.

Add that to the stress of my already precarious financial situation, the gazillion rand we are throwing at the renovating, and the wedding we had to pay for this year and the fact that we were still recovering from last year’s maternity leave/four months unemployment, let’s just say it is all just well a little stressful and this retrenchment thing blows chunks!

So all in all you can see how I can use the phrase November sucks like a m*therf*cker!

Birth Control is sometimes an IQ Test …..

I am reasonably bright but I find remembering to take birth control nearly impossible.

I tried to take the birth control pill a number of years back.

When I realized I was taking them five or seven at a time, because I kept forgetting to take them each day, it occurred to me that it might not be the best method for me.  My amending the one-a-day protocol may well lead to pregnancy, which at the time was not the plan.

I heard about a birth control injection, and looked into that a bit.

You only have to do that once every three months.

Sounds like a pretty full-proof plan to me.  Though I am not really keen on injections, I felt that it was a small price to pay for not having to take handfuls of birth control tablets.

Of course I did not actually go and have it done every three months.

I read that it takes about nine to twelve  months for your cycle to stabilize after your last injection.   I figured if I was two or three months late with my follow up injection, it was not really going to do much harm.

I tended to skate on the wild side with that method as well.

Please bear in mind that we have three children and none were conceived with a “surprise” – they were all conceived as a plan.  Even with my rather reckless disregard for the fine print on birth control products, it seems I do not fall pregnant unless there is a plan and a spreadsheet involved.

In each case I came off birth control, waited the correct period, and then we started trying to conceive.  I am not saying that it is impossible that I fall pregnant with my rather flagrant disregard for the instructions, but for me it appears to be unlikely based on past experience.

Earlier this year, my OBGYN sort of went the colour of pale puke when I told him I was on Depo Provera (birth control injection).  He did not quite run naked screaming into the traffic, but he did raise his eyebrow and lower the tone of his voice to a very serious level and made reference to my age, and some other unsavoury comments, which are best left unsaid for a lady of quality like myself.

The man is from Austria, one listens when an Austrian man issues commands/suggestions to you.

With his rather sobering suggestion, I opted back onto birth control pills.

Again I found myself gobbling handfuls when I remembered.  I realized that maturity has not changed me at all when it came to following instructions on the packs of birth control.  I felt if I remained on this path, we would be parents (again) before the month was out.

I was lamenting my problem to the GP whilst she was looking over one of my kids for one illness or another.  She commented that there is a birth control patch on the market, it is quite new, but she recommends it.

You stick it on your body once a week and leave it – then put a new patch on each week, and that is pretty much the level of effort involved.    That is the extent that you need to remember.  One plaster, once a week.

Sounds easy!  She was jolly nice and wrote me up a script too.  (I do love piggy-backing on a doctor’s visit and not having to pay for two consultations.)

I was very excited to get my first lick-and-stick patch.  I stuck it on my rather large arse and thought something would happen.   I am not sure what, but there was nothing, so I thought, well clearly I must be doing it right.

Let’s leave it to do it’s work quietly shall we.

Second week, I was all excited about my “patch change day” – listen I do not have much excitement going on in my neck of the woods.  It went well, and I was pleased that I had managed to find such an easy method of birth control that even I could not muck up.

Third week, still excited about my patch change day – none of the magic has been lost on me.  It was quite special, until I stuck the patch to itself and I could not get it loose.  Shit!   No patch!  Damn it!

I had to get to work, and then something happened on the weekend and I could not go to chemist.

I finally got there on Monday and got a new pack.  Took one patch out of new pack to use to finish week 3 of old cycle.

Ah, all very easy.

It even comes with stickers that you stick in your diary to remind you which day is patch 1, patch 2, patch 3 and free patch week – what could be easier?  Nothing could be easier, right?

Do I still manage to get it wrong?  Of course I do.

Fast forward about two months.  Last week I am standing about to change my patch – it is basically a plaster about 20mm x 20mm that you stick anywhere on your body and the hormones are absorbed through your skin.

I think “wait I have got it wrong” – and then I realize I have totally cocked it up and I have no idea where I am in my little patch change program, like no idea!

You are meant to have 3 weeks of patches, and then one week of no patch – as then you have an AF/your cycle/eat chocolate and scream at the cat, which ever fits you as the most appropriate term for what occurs in week 4.

So then I realise I have it wrong, so one of a few things are going on here:

  1. I have not got it wrong, and this is a patch free week.
  2. I have missed my “free week” and I am technically a week “late” with my AF.
  3. I have missed my “free week” already a week ago and I am technically two weeks “late” with my AF.
  4. I have no idea where the hell I am in my month.

Because I have no idea where I am – other than in the bathroom – it could be option 1,2, 3, 4 or any combination of the above.

I stood looking more confused than usual.  Then I got stressed, and consulted with Kennith who suggested I use this as a “patch free” week and start sticking a new patch next week, as there was nothing else to do.

I agreed with him – only because I really had no idea what the hell I was doing.

But then the mice/hamster/small rodent in my head started to run amuck – like totally.

I was convinced that I was already a week late (with the arrival of my period in case it is not obvious) and then I started to think “what if I am pregnant?”

The problem is that I move from “what if” to “I am pregnant” pretty quickly.  Actually the term is “with lightening quick speed.”

Added to that is that I have felt nauseous like no one’s business for nearly two weeks now, and my stomach has just been feeling out of sorts.

So based on all of this I totally started living in the assumption that I am now pregnant (with number four you understand!).

I started wondering when I should pee on a stick, just to confirm the obvious and all.

And more importantly how long I should just not tell Kennith, because I am sure he will actually run away – not metaphorically.

But like packing his underpants and an onion into a little bag and actually running away. (He did that when he was small, packed an onion and a pair of underpants and ran away from home…gotta love a child who runs away with a change of underwear and ingredients for a simple salad.)

As the days dragged on I constantly thought the universe was giving me signs.

I saw an advert the night before last, advertising a new brand of pee-on-a-stick-and-see-if-you-are-pregnant that not only tells you if you are pregnant, but also tells you when you conceived.   I googled the product after seeing the advert.

I have never seen that advert before – it must be a sign!

Then this morning someone was speaking about pregnancy, and as I walked in to the room, someone said “You will probably have another one, right?” to which I answered in silent horror (and amazement) “How did you know, is it that obvious already?”

Another sign – surely!

This morning I put on my “shirt that I bought at the beginning of my last pregnancy” to work – oh there were signs everywhere I tell you.

I had already shortlisted names.   It will be a boy this time.

Started mentally moving Isabelle into Georgia’s room – decided on which bedding would work for both girls.  I cut back on wine last night – yes, one should only have limited alcohol when one is pregnant, it is the responsible thing to do.

I had already started apologizing to Isabelle this morning as she would not be my baby any more as there would probably be an usurper in our midst.

As you can see, one just needs  only to point me in the direction, turn my little mechanical key and off I go.

I pictured the conversation where Kennith sits me down and explains that we really cannot have four children and then tells me that we need to discuss an abortion.

And then the part where I am pulling my hair and beating my chest in anguish and begging him to reconsider.

I have pictured so many permutations that I am quite exhausted, what being imaginary pregnant and all.

I thought I would leave it until Monday and then officially pee on a stick.

 

As it worked out, it seems there is no need to pee on a stick as of late this morning.  I can honestly say I am actually a bit disappointed, I am not crushed and flaying around on the floor, but I am a little disappointed.

I am waiting for Kennith to phone me crying in relief! (he did not know about my delusional pregnancy, so there is no need to send him any words of condolences.)

If only the cat could just lie down with the mouse …

Yesterday I am driving home with Connor and Georgia after school.

Georgia starts talking about how the cat and the mouse are brothers and how they chase each other.  She is just going on and on, and I have absolutely no idea what she is referring to.

Experience has taught me to just let her go off on her own thing while I stare blankly at traffic.

She often just goes off on a tangent – and chats away to herself blindly unawares of anyone else around her (yes, therapy a bit later for her imaginary friend, busy writing in book now)

Georgia is one of those children that just operates on a totally different level of reality.

The stuff that pops out of her mouth often leaves us guffawing with laughter – because of it’s unique perspective, often inappropriate timing and because I seriously have no idea where she gets it from.

I really wish I could say it was from me – as I envy her ability to think so creatively and at five to explain it in such a logical manner (even when it is totally out there, her explanations often/always have merit!)

She is prattling on about the cat and the mouse.

I realise she is leaving gaps in the conversation, and is waiting for me to comment or answer a question, and clearly I am not.

I start paying more attention to her ramblings, and trying to put what she is saying into context and realise that it sounds like she is talking about Tom and Jerry.

So I go: “Georgia is it Tom and Jerry? Are they brothers?”

Georgia: “Yeeessssssssss, and then the cat chases the mouse, and the mouse is faster than the cat and gets away.”

Me: “Sure, but now and then the cat is faster than the mouse, and that is how the mouse does get caught.”

Connor who likes to remain the world of pure-facts-no-fantasies pipes up: “But Tom and Jerry aren’t brothers….”

Georgia: ‘Yes, they are…”

Connor: “A cat and a mouse can’t be brothers!” (clearly the concept of a cat family adopting a mouse has not occurred to him, but anyway)

Georgia: “Yes they can!”

Connor: “NO they CAN’T!”

Georgia” Yes they can!”

Connor:  “Mommmmmyyyyy tell her…!”

Me – in a whisper – : “Leave me out of it, you started it with her…”

Connor – who is now starting to get into wildly defensive mode to stand his ground, sees another angle.

I can almost hear the pride in his voice as he comes up with this pearler: ”Georgia, they can’t be brothers – because Tom and Jerry are always trying to hurt each other and Tom is trying to kill Jerry, and brothers don’t kill brothers!”

He looks at me with a self-satisfied smile that clearly says “there we go, I just cleared that little issue up for you.”

Winner-winner-chicken-dinner and all.

To which Georgia – who does not miss a beat goes: “You know in the bible, there are two brothers, Cain and Abel, and the one brothers kills the other brother. The one brother looks after sheep and the other brother grows things, and the one brother kills the other brother  dead.  And they are in the bible and they are brothers, so Tom and Jerry can be brothers.”

Of course I beam with pride.

Not because Connor has been beaten in his argument by a 5 year old – but because she works this stuff out for herself. Georgia can join dots-of-reasoning like no one’s business.

I am really thrilled to have such a free-thinking free-spirited five year old.

I am not so sure I will be so happy when she is sixteen and is a free-thinking free-spirited girl with breasts – but I can cross that bridge another day.

An arrow from Parow ……

I officially live in the Northern Suburbs.

I have been kidding myself for a while that I actually do not actually LIVE in the Northern Suburbs.

I will tell anyone who will listen that I happen to be on the “belt” between the two worlds of the Northern and the Southern.

I am delusional most days, so this little oversight does not take much effort from my part.

The suburb that we live in is actually an ERF that belongs to the area of Parow.

So not only have I had to admit that I live in the Northern Suburbs, but I now officially live in Parow.

Which if you know the area, is usually something that is used as a source of ridicule if someone lives, comes from, or drives through Parow.  Jack Parow is not called Jack Parow for nothing!

Though – and I would like to add for the possible effect on our house sale price in the future – that the suburb I live in does not say “Parow” on the street signs.  We clearly did not really think about that when we were paying the 2.5 trillion rand for the house.

One of the giveaways  – that I should have paid more attention to – is that our postal code and Parow’s postal code are identical!  Yes, everyone is wise after the fact – where were you in March 2008?

When we moved in to our suburbs, I had to find new schools for the kids.

Finding schools is about as painful as childbirth, but just goes on a bit longer.  The downside of looking for a school is that you can’t get medication on a script to make it less painful, and no one gives you pink or blue balloons!  But you do sort of feel your v-jay-jay tearing at about the same rate.

The suburb where we lived before, had a church, bottle store and school on every corner.

Where we live now you have to drive quite a ways to find any of the three.  Schools do appear to be not as popular as either bottle stores or churches.

I am not sure exactly what social deduction one can make from that observation, but anyway, moving along.

I managed to find schools where Afrikaans was the “taal” spoken and English seemed to be this strange other language that was spoken with unfortunate accents and severe mispronunciation, along with people who wear jean pant and said words like “uver” in place of “other”.

Now I am not knocking anyone who has the taal as a first language.  The problem is Connor is such a rooi-nek he could not speak a word of Afrikaans when we moved in to the area.  Sending him to an Afrikaans school might have been touching on child abuse.

Georgia was at “language development” stage – so I wanted her to develop an English language as her mother tongue. and not Afrikaans or better yet English with a strong Afrikaans accent.

I found a school for Connor that had a dual-medium class, and though we were both a bit scared of how he would cope, he actually was fine.  It was a great school and continues to be a little gem in this area.  He did manage to pick up quite a bit of Afrikaans and fitted in really well with his new “maajties.”

Connor is never going to speak like a natural Afrikaner.  But he has learnt to get by.  His ability to make us laugh as he totally destroys the language of Afrikaans does give us hours of pleasure.

I got Georgia into a school – and I made the assumption that because the headmistress was English it was an English school.

Let’s just say that my assumptions are less than accurate and this is just another one to add to the pile.

Totally got this one wrong.

Georgia was in a class that was meant to be dual medium class but with English spoken as the majority.  I think the teacher only swung to English when I appeared in the room to give the impression that they had a “nice balance of languages.”

The reality was that when I heard the teacher – with the best intentions – reading English I started to weep.  Not in happiness, but in fear that my child was going to officially have the worst accent possible and then I started to pray that she would stop raping the English language and switch back to Afrikaans, which sounded by far more humane.

Of course I said nothing, and instead chewed the inside of my cheek and hoped tomorrow would be a better day in the land of English language teaching.

The day I realized that we were REALLY lived in the Northern Suburbs was when I dropped Georgia off at her fairly Afrikaans school and most of the kids arrived WITHOUT shoes (they could afford shoes you understand, but they choose to not put them on, which is odd as they appear to have taken care with their outfits and grooming.)

But what was more alarming was the dads who arrived wearing those short black rugby shorts and NO SHOES! That was a very sobering moment for me.  If I recall I phoned Kennith a little on the hysteric side.

Just for the record, this is the same school where Georgia learnt to sing “Los Lappie” and “Kaptein Span die Seile” both by the artist known as Kurt Darron.

Of all the smut and obscenity she would hear in our house, I have always been very careful to never infect her with Kurt Darron.  But the damage is done, and Georgia can sing a “liedtjie” like no one’s business.

I have continued to live in denial regarding our living arrangements – I have continued to insist that my children wear shoes to school, or when ever we leave the house.

Connor has moved to a fantastic primary school – and though it is primarily Afrikaans both in look, feel, and culture, the English teachers are fantastic.

I get the benefit of small English classes in primarily an Afrikaans school, and the school is very disciplined and offer a really homely kind of feel to it – so it is win-win for me.

The one thing I noticed – again – was that the kids do not always wear shoes to school.  However there was a stern note that said kids need to wear shoes to school on a Friday as it is “saal.”  (assembly for you cretins who do not understand any Afrikaans)

Connor has been bleating to go barefoot for months – and I have said no.  I really want to keep a semblance that maybe we do not live on a farm, and milk Bessie to get creamer for our coffee in the morning.  Maybe we are city folk!

But we are going through a pair of school shoes every 1 ½ months with Connor.  We are up to school shoe pair number eight this year alone.

This week I have “allowed” Connor to go to school barefoot.  He was so excited and flung his arms around me and confessed that I was “the best mommy in the world.”

Day one he did come to the car limping as his feet were so sore.

But by day two he was good to go.

This morning when I dropped him off I looked around at the school and about ½ the kids – mainly boys – were there without school shoes.  I am not sure if it made me happy or a little sad.

We might need to relook at our neighbourhood sign and see if it actually does say Parow after all.

What the hell is it about Mondays?

So we went cabining, which I believe is not camping.

To be honest cabining is about as close to camping as I plan to get.  The cabin’s inner walls did not go to the ceiling, so if you were frying an egg in the kitchen, you could and did have a full going conversation with the person who was using the toilet.

Georgia was also really excited that her bedroom was in the kitchen, which it was.  So really it sounds like camping to me.

But I am taking away from how incredibly good these cabins in Swellendam were.  They were placed at the foot of the Langeberg and to say it was totally exquisite, would be to do it a disservice.  You literally stood on the stoep and went “wow!”

We had a lovely little dam right in front of our cabins.  The cabins were very well organized and super clean.  The views were breath-taking and it was really divine – within 10 minutes you felt like all your worries had floated away.

Sure you then started to worry how you were going to get your wine cold while you waited for the gas fridges to cool down – but then I have a Kennith, who had stopped at the local Swellendam Drankwinkel and bought me ice, so really I had nothing to worry about.

Farmer guy gave us permission to go into the berry fields and pick berries until we puked – he did not actually say that, but I took it that it was implied.

We did – and I just want to use this opportunity to comment that child-labour is alive and flourishing in Swellendam.  Kennith paid Connor R50.00 to go and fill up a tupperware container, which by Woolworth’s prices would cost about 3 million rand to purchase in store, full of berries.

We were not given the same freedom with the pigs.  But we did eat bacon for breakfast – which was supplied by a distant cousin of the pigs we saw.  We did feel a little guilty as the pigs we saw were quite sweet.

It really was a lovely weekend and I cannot recommend  Fazenda Log Cabins more.  If you are sitting there thinking, hmm, that sounds good, then contact Ina Ross on 0724997879 or drop her an email on iross1@telkomsa.net

No, she is not paying me to punt the cabins, but they were really good, and we are definitely going to head out there again.  It is a total get away from it all.

We went along with two other bloggers and their significant others and off-spring.

It is amazing what a few bottles of wine/beer and a large fire will do to suddenly make everyone all chummy.

I think for the girls it was easier, as though we did not know each other in the biblical sense, we did feel we knew each other, so spending time together felt quite easy.  I like the part where we could just sit on the porch in silence and look out at the scenery!

The boys however did have to stand around the braai and bond over boerewors and beer, but they were fine and seemed to enjoy it as well.

Overall a really good weekend – we felt well rested and all in-tune with nature and stuff.  Kids were dirty and exhausted, which is always a sign they had a good time.

Karma has a funny way of reminding me that she is alive and rules the world – so Sunday night and Monday morning went for a bit of a crock of crap, just to show me the balance in the universe.

Georgia was on high energy the entire weekend – so she was a bit trying – which is not like her, but anyway.

She insisted on singing her school concert song pretty much the entire way on the drive back, until she fell asleep from exhaustion.  Now I am all for encouraging kids to sing and be expressive, but right now I am all concert-songed out!

When we got home to home-sweet-home, we realized how stressful it is to do house renovations, so as soon as we arrived home and started stepping over the dust and plaster, we started to feel a bit stressed.

Added to it that our DSTV was not getting a signal, and we no longer had the luxury of warm water.

Our geezer has been very temperamental of late, and right now it has decided to err on the side of no hot water.

We decided to take the kids and head out for dinner at the Spur.  Add Georgia singing the concert song again and bouncing off Spur furniture, and it was slightly less than a pleasant evening out.

We got home, threw kids into a bath – Kennith boiled pots and kettles and then kids got into bed – see we even took the camping theme home with us.

Once kids were in bed, Kennith and I sort of fell down in an exhausted heap ourselves.

Unfortunately I had a little fall on Saturday night – which I would love to blame on the copious intake of alcohol – but instead I need to blame the gravel and the combination of slip-slops and my stupidity.

I pretty much went head-over-tit with Isabelle in my arms.  My focus was on falling backwards and not forwards – so as not to damage her further.  Which I believe I did judging by my elegant landing.

My left leg however did one of those bend-out-backwards-in-a-direction-only-barbie-dolls-made-by-matel-should-be-able-to-do.  My back did appear to take the full brunt of the fall – as well as my pride.

The reason for this little sidebar story is that on Sunday I was feeling quite sore, and by  the time I crawled into bed on Sunday night I was whimpering.

I fell asleep only to be awakened by Connor screaming and apologizing simultaneously.  Like screaming like a mad man screaming!

I dashed/limped down the passage – switched on his light to find him puking giant great-dane-sized throw-up heaps of vomit (listen, there is just no polite way of putting this).  But while he is puking he is apologizing to me for puking …

I must confess had I had more time I would have found this endearing.

But he was sleeping at the top of his double bunk and thus puking off the bunk.  The chunks were splattering against the wall, as it made it’s way down to settle into his toy box!

Fantastic.

Kennith does not do puke – at all – so I knew that it would be safer to send him out of the room, else odds are I would be dealing with his puking as well.  I was sure my sense of humour was not equipped to deal with ore puke at 2am.

Connor clearly felt grim.  I can’t say at that point that I was feeling much better.

He did have a roaring temperature, so I cleaned him up, the bed up, the wall up, the toy box up, the floor up, then the side of the bucket up – I retch-retched a bit in sympathy – and then gave him some Panado, and sat with him for a bit.

Once I got the odour of I-ate-Spur-for-dinner-and-now-have-hurled-it-up-in-chunks smell off my hands, I fell into bed at about 3am, and whimpered before I fell asleep.

Isabelle woke up at 5am, and normally she goes back to sleep.  But she could clearly sense the fact that I was not having a good morning and decided to scream in that I-want-someone-to-come-get-me-out-of-my-cot-right-this-damn-minute tone. I wish I could say I ran there immediately – but I did sort of lie there for a few moments the hope that she was playing a joke and would go back to sleep.

It appears the joke was on me.  So I dragged myself through to collect her and that is pretty much when the morning got going.

Of course there was no hot water for a shower.  Every muscle in my body ached.  I was so sleep deprived that I could not actually sit up vertically.

I decided to go in to work late as my back was really killing me and I figured a two hour sleep would be just what the doctor ordered, along with two syndols and a cup of tea.

The arrival of the plumbers with the jack hammers had other ideas, and had scant regard for my need to sleep.

The thing I learnt was that sometimes you are exhausted enough to sleep through the noise of a jack hammer, but not for very long.  45 minutes seemed the maximum before I had to sort of roll myself out of bed and down the passage and attempt to colour co-ordinate my wardrobe for work.

So all in all, not a great start to the week, and easily – added to a few other issues on my Monday – I can say that this day sucked with a large fat zerbit kinda suck!

Gone fishing …. or being murdered …..

So this weekend Kennith and I are going away for the weekend with girls we have met through my blog and some forums I chat on.

When I saw we have met, I really mean I have met.  And I am dragging Kennith who has become the reluctant husband along with me.

This morning while Vera was waxing my personal bits, I was telling her the story and what we were doing this weekend.  She asked me how Kennith feels about being dragged along on a weekend with people he actually does not know.

I said, well, I am not sure, because I had not stopped to ask him.  She raised a finely plucked eyebrow and carried on ripping my hair from it’s roots.

Vera commented that not many men would agree to go along for this sort of weekend, and Kennith was quite a trooper/unusual/not like most men.

I had not actually given that much thought.

Here we are going away on a weekend, where the girls in these three couples have struck up a friendship, albeit a strange one.  We seem to find something in each other that resonates with us and on what appears to be an agreed liking for each other, we have committed to spending 48 hours together – away in a cabin, next to a river/dam/water mass.

I really had not considered that I am “forcing” Kennith – and the other girls are forcing their respective partners – to spend a weekend with two other men that he might not be friends with, and possibly might not choose to be friends with if the choice was left to him (Possibly, they might prove to be bosom buddies and be spooning by Saturday night.  One never knows what happens when boys go up a hill and there is an open fire, see what happened in Brokeback Mountain and all).

The choice actually is not being made by him.

I planned this weekend, and he said “no we are not doing it, we don’t even know these people” and then I told him to stop being a “Nancy boy, what is the worst that can happen, it will be fine, not get it together” and then he said “okay” begrudgingly and I carried on planning this weekend.

Actually he is quite a sport and has taken ½ days leave today, and is doing all the shopping for the weekend.  As reluctant as he is, he is still getting behind this idea in a big way.

So yes, Vera, as you remove my deeply rooted pubic hair with maybe a bit too much force – you are correct.  Kennith is a little unusual as far as “most men” go.

I have always admitted that Kennith is not “most men” – he supports me and gets behind my seemingly insane ideas.

He stands next to me and supports me when most other “men” would have abandoned ship and headed for the hills.  Though we do have boy and girl roles, I do think as partners in a relationship, our roles as man and woman are sometimes blurred, and he often picks up some of my roles, as I think I do his.

I like that I have a Kennith who does stuff that maybe not all men do, and whose take on our life is not “old school and traditional.”  He is an active inclusive father, and we do not look at it as something strange.  If I am an active inclusive mother, why should he not be an active inclusive father?

About two weeks ago, my mom and my aunt were staying with us for the weekend.  I was away on the one day, I can’t recall where I was – but I was out.  Kennith was sorting out the kids.

I got home early evening/late afternoon and my mom and aunt were sitting at the dining room table finishing dinner. They were talking about Kennith in hushed tones of awe, as if he had just turned water into wine, while walking on the water, and wrestling with the lions in the den.

I though “Okaaaaaaaaaaaaaayyyy.”

Once I got past them, I went to find Kennith and check on the kids.  He had them all in hand.

I asked what he had done that had created such awe in my mother and aunt,  and he commented “nothing really.” I asked him what he had up to this evening.

He said he had fed the kids, got the kids into the bath, got them into their jammies, and they were downstairs watching television.  He had fed Isabelle, and was waiting for me as I enjoyed bathing with her.  I said “okay, anything unusual” and he said “No, but your mom and aunt did keep looking at him and smiling…maybe they aren’t used to a guy doing stuff.”

I went back and sat with my mom and aunt at the dining room table.  They commented again that Kennith was such a super man, and should have a cape and maybe wear his underpants on the outside.

I sort of smiled and drank some more wine – I might have chugged it a bit actually – and then went on with my evening.

Later I was chatting to Kennith about his super-man status.  He raised something that I probably had not really thought about much.

My mother and my aunt are not used to men who help out with “women’s work.” They are used to men who arrive home, complain about their heavy day, kick off their shoes, put their feet on the coffee table, and wait for their wife to bring them a cold beer in their favourite glass.

While they read the newspaper, the little woman goes off and finishes dinner which she serves with a flourish.

Same man eats dinner, and pats his wife on the head and complements her on the great meal.  Burps in appreciation and goes to settle himself on the couch and watches a bit of footie on the tellie.

When that is done and he is ready to go to bed, he will wink over at his wife and say “Honey are you coming to bed” – to which is wife will say  “Right there honey” and she will be.

What he does not see is that she has spent the day running around after kids and the house.

She has prepared the meal from scratch – no Woolies throw-in-the-microwave faire here – and got kids homeworked, bathed, jammied and in bed, and done a host of other activities.   The kitchen is spotless.  She found time to go to the bottle store and restock on the beer.

She has done a bit of gardening, probably some grocery shopping, stood in queues for paying electricity, completing Tim’s school project on owl migration, and spent 15 minutes making herself pretty and presentable before Mr. Husband got home.

So she will appear next to her husband, while he goes on to tell her about the difficult day he had.  She will not think for a minute to tell him that Tim had flushed the cat down the toilet and she had to single-handedly go in and rescue the cat, and then wash the sh*t off the cat, while Tim and his brother Larry watched.

And what’s more she will be ready to have sex if and when he wishes it.  All this she will do without uttering a word of complaint, or reflect on her situation and go “Fek, I got the short end of the stick here in this relationship deal.”

But times are different – thank heavens for that!

Kennith does not “help” out with the kids.  He has responsibilities that include the kids – his kids.

I confess, I do sometimes say “please help me get the kids out of the bath” as if it is my duty, and he is being a real help by helping me.

I also confess that we have taken on different roles in our house – most of the children related things fall to me to deal with.  But at the same time Kennith does all the grocery shopping and most nights he cooks, or he brings home take aways, or he takes me out for dinner. He does not expect a meal to miraculously land in front of me.

Well maybe he does expect it, but the cold reality has hit him that if he waits he will go hungry.  Maybe he has taken on the role of “hunter and provider” in our little family as he is tired of waiting for the food to magically appear out of the oven he bought me that I still do not quite know how to use.

So yes, a few things might have changed since my mom and my aunt had their kids, and maybe our home operates a bit differently to theirs and even to other households I have seen.

Even now I see friends where the  guy has a limited role in terms of house and kids – fortunately that is not my household.   Both Kennith and I have chosen that he takes an active role.  Okay I chose it, he sort of got beat into doing it, but damn, does that boy do a good job now!

Back to this weekend – I am really excited about going away with my internet chums.

It is a bit like internet dating, but without the pressure of “whether we will need to have sex.”  I am really hoping that they are not thinking we are all going to be having sex, as I am sure that was not what I had  conveyed.

So I am officially “Gone Fishing” and will see you on Monday!

If you don’t hear from me on Monday, and you need to report me as a missing person to the police as my “internet chums” have turned into nothing more than “serial murders who stalk innocent prey like me on the internet” get the police to look in the direction of Swellendam near some log cabins.

You might be an adult child if…

My new mate from chickendee.wordpress.com has given me some insight, bless her.

I heard the term “adult child” bandied around a few years ago while I was playing institution-institution. At the time I sort of parked it to the back of my mind, thinking that I had bigger issues to deal with other than going along to a group meeting and drinking really bad coffee.

This morning chickendee.wordpress.com emailed me a list of “You might be an adult child if…” and I looked through the list.

Initially I thought, I would mark the ones that applied to me, but then I realised short of three I was marking them all.

So though I am not a huge proponent of “cutting and pasting” to my blog, I really liked this list, and I probably could not describe myself better.

So ask yourself, are you an adult child if ….

You attend a party that you were invited to.  When the hors d’oeuvres  are passed around, you decline… so not to be a burden, certain everyone is watching you, and taking stock of how much you eat, what your wearing, how your acting. (It is funny but this is just the way it is, but at the same time exhausting being this self involved …)

You don’t use public restrooms… and if you do, you don’t make any noise if someone else is in there. (I am laughing now, I used to be at boarding school and did not use the toilet from Sunday night through to Friday afternoon.  When I was fetched on a Friday afternoon, I was shaking with the anticipation and shall we say build up.  If we had to stop on the way home to do shopping, it was excruciating!)

You turn down the volume on your car stereo at a stop light because you think the person next to you will judge your taste. (The only exception is if I am listening to Nickelback, or Prime Circle, then I have a bit of a “fek them” attitude.)

You eat an entire meal that you hate because you don’t want to hurt the chef’s feelings.

You always make sure everyone else’s feelings are taken into account before you even notice your own.  (I have notched this one up a bit, unless my needs are being totally ignored – consciously by me- or I am actually being inconvenienced in some way – usually by my design – I am not truly satisfied …. )

When you go through the drive-thru and get a sprite instead of the fries you intended to order, you would prefer to drive off with something you don’t want rather than risk irritating an employee. When you finally muster up the courage to point out the mistake, you can’t believe what a non-big deal it turns out to be!  (I have sent Kennith back into shops several times to get change when I have been over- charged, to get me the right thing …. and so on and so on…)

Your significant other is upset at something, and you ask what you did wrong.  (Sometimes I don’t ask, but I know I did something wrong, because really what else could it be, it is all about me!)

You play the “victim” role in order to get attention, and when someone asks you what is wrong you answer:- “Nothing.”

When you are legitimately sick and in need of rest, you painfully make the decision to call out of work, feeling guilty about it, and then when you call your boss…, you try to make yourself sound sicker…. cough, cough, sniffle, sneeze, wheeeeze… (I practice a bit before I make the call….)

You’re in active labor with your first child, but instead of calling your midwife you spend at least 30 minutes reading a book just to make sure that it truly is labor. You’re scared to wake up the midwife with a false alarm.  (I feel guilty every time I go to the doctor, even though my arm has fallen off and is being dragged behind me by a mucus thread, I still convince that I am making it up, and I am just bothering them.)

You figure you’ve only gotten one response to the topic you posted recently because it’s boring and nobody else can relate or you’re not suffering enough for people to sense this and answer, or you didn’t express yourself well enough. You want to go in and readdress it, but now apathy is taking over and you decide, “well, at least I got it out,” and decide to move on.

You are the last one to respond to a post and no one else responds, and you think:- “Crap. I angered them all. I was too honest, or too much, or not enough…”

You go out for lunch, get your order, then see that only tables for 4 are open, and start thinking that people are going to be upset at you if you sit there. But you sit there anyway, because there are no other tables, and look around wondering when someone else will go by and give you a dirty look.

You feel guilty for making your bed the “Lazy Way” by pulling up the bed spread and throwing pillows on top, rather then the way you were taught as a child, to tuck the sheets into perfect corners, and lay the spread OVER the pillows and tucked in.

When you are being introduced to someone, afterwards you don’t know their name, in fact you haven’t even heard it, because you were just too busy with how you behaved towards them, how you came across to the other person when you were being introduced.  (Is this phrase too long to have it printed up and put on a t-shirt, that I can wear ALL THE FLIPPING time?)

Even though you want to simply read a book, you feel obligated to talk to the person next to you. You end up listening and talking for most of the flight and sharing way too much personal information in an attempt to make this stranger “like you”.

You do everything in your power to be a good mom. In fact if someone mentions that they do this or that for their kids you immediately think you should probably do it too. Everyone tells you you’re a good mom, people compliment you on your children, but you lie awake at night feeling like a bad mother and promising yourself you’ll try harder tomorrow.

When you are in therapy and apparently telling such a sad story, it brings tears to the eyes of your therapist, and then you feel guilty about making her sad (while you’re paying her big time and it’s her job..)

If everything is going well, but you’re looking around wondering what’s going to go wrong next instead of just enjoying that everything is fine for now and now is all that matters for a moment!

If you wait to flush the toilet in a public restroom because you certainly wouldn’t want to disturb the lady in the stall next to you talking on the cell phone!

Someone offers to take you out to dinner at the restaurant of your choice, and you base your decision on where you think they would like to eat and let them know that if that’s not okay, then we can go somewhere else instead.

When members of management at work go into a closed door meeting in one of their offices, you automatically think they’re plotting your demise.  (Oh my heavens, see early Facebook comment regarding my persecution complex last week.)

You’re at work and you hear someone laughing a few cubicles over and assume they’re making fun of you. (This statement is totally incorrect, because I know for a fact that they are making fun of me.)

You think that every time someone honks their horn that they’re honking at you and they’re angry, even if you know you’re not doing anything wrong.

You approach your child’s teacher in the morning to chat for 3 minutes because your daughter is struggling with a certain subject and you need help. She readily agrees and offers your child free extra help after school.  You walk away after only chatting for 3 minutes feeling you took up too much time and am a burden to the teacher and probably the most painful mother in the class. (Or you can just save her the burden and not approach her about anything ever, that is also a good tactic I find.)

How many adult children does it take to change a light bulb?

Answer: None… they are all waiting for the light bulb to change.

Some days are a marathon …. or just a half marathon …

So I get this email yesterday, and the persons responsible is Kennith.

Clearly he read the blog post and decided if I showed any glimmer of running a half marathon he probably felt he was going to do the “strike while the iron is hot” thing.

So I get this email:-

—————————-

From: 2011@TwoOceansMarathon.org.za [mailto:2011@TwoOceansMarathon.org.za]
Sent: 09 November 2010 13:43
Subject: Old Mutual Two Oceans Marathon : Entry Accepted[AntiVir checked]

Dear CELESTE *****

Your entry in the Old Mutual Two Oceans Marathon 2011 21 km Half Marathon has been CONFIRMED on 09/11/2010 at 13:43:04.

Your final race details are as follows:

Name            : CELESTE *****

ID Number       : 7205090******

Passport Number :

Date of Birth   : Tuesday 09 May 1972

Gender          : Female

Nationality     : South Africa (RSA)

Club            : Temp (Western Province)

Category        : Age 20-39  (Gasp, I clearly made it into the young one’s group, but only just.  i think it might be better if I was with the older crowd though, because I think I am going to look pretty tragic next to a 25 year old runner in her prime.)

Race            : 21 km Half Marathon (What the hell!!  Is a half marathon really twenty flipping one kilometers, that seems a tad long to me. I take snacks if I am going to drive more than 10 kilometers in my car.)

Race Number     : 52454

T-Shirt(s)      : 1 (Large) (And here is the part where I went “What the fek!” A LARGE T-shirt.  Now I am offended that Kennith did not think he could or should order me a medium!  I might just be offended enough to boycott this stupid run.)

Seeding         : E (Is that good – are are there F and G seeds behind me?)

RaceTec Chip    : Will be in your race pack at Registration (Whoop, whoop a goodie bag – a girl loves a bit of swag.  Though I am suspicious it will be crammed with healthy things rather than wine and chuckles.)

Race Date       : Saturday 23 April 2011

Start Time      : 06:00 (Sheez, that is going to mean I will have to get up frightfully early on that morning, right there is a huge concern. Good grief 6am to be there, that will mean I am probably up around 4am!)

Start Venue     : Main Road, Newlands

Finish          : Upper Campus Rugby Fields, University of Cape Town, Rondebosch

Payment Type    : Credit Card (Internet)

Payment Ref     : 116390

Total Cost      : R 394.00 (Seems like a lot of money just so I can run on a public road.)

Runners must register before the race to receive their race packs (numbers and related items including a goody bag). Registration will take place as follows:

Good Hope Centre, corner of Sir Lowry Road and Oswald Pirow Street, Cape Town

Wednesday 20 April 2011, 10:00 – 19:00

Thursday  21 April 2011, 10:00 – 19:00

Friday    22 April 2011, 09:00 – 19:00 (Expo only closes at 17:00)

NO NUMBER COLLECTION ON SATURDAY MORNING (RACE DAY) BEFORE THE RACE.

Please bring the following with you to Registration:

– A printed entry confirmation

– Your ID document, passport or drivers licence

– Your RaceTec timing chip (if you already own one)

NO CHANGES WILL BE PERMITTED AT REGISTRATION AT THE GOOD HOPE CENTRE.

All the best with your preparation towards the race.

Regards

– Two Oceans Marathon Administration

http://www.TwoOceansMarathon.org.za

+27 21 657 5140/1/2

—————————-

So, there we are, it is now done!

I must confess that my running buddy Alice has been so quiet, I can hear the crickets chirping in the distance.

Do they still sell those satin type running shorts with the slip up the side of the leg?

I’m Spelling as Fast as I Can….

I really hate exercise, not just a little, but a whole lot.

There is NOTHING I would rather be doing than lying on my bed, drinking a large glass of wine, eating a bag of Chuckles and reading my book.  NOTHING!

At school I was sporty.  It was because I enjoyed the sport or the achievement, not because I enjoyed being active.

I enjoyed high jump, long jump and a lot of other athletic things that involved running and jumping.  Some I was good at, some not so much, but I was happy to do it.  I sort of fell over hurdles, but I did it anyway.  I played badminton and, tennis (not well).  I even played cricket (I really did).  I really loved netball – I really loved netball like a lot!

It is actually a great sport for tall girls with a bit of aggression, especially if you like to wear shorts under your skirts.

I pretty much had a sport  activity each day after school, and most Saturday.  I was not even the sporty one in my family – I was considered the brainy one.

My brother Bruce was super sporty.  He played every possible sport there was.  If it had a ball, if it did not have a balll, what ever he had a go at it, and was generally really good.

Any the way, back to me.

I have always been a tall thin girl – yes, I know how jealous you are.  But if it makes you feel any better, I USED to be a tall thin girl.  Now I am a tall, not-so-thin girl.  Karma has a great way of coming back, to just give you a kick in the pants to level out the playing field doesn’t it?

My stomach appears to have got a bit more wobbly that it really needs to be.  And my thighs make that sound that your thighs make, when you are wearing corduroys – even when I am not wearing corduroys.

I am not likely to give up my chenin-blanc-and-chuckles diet, so I have had to make the very sad realization that I am going to need to exercise.

I did do a bit of Adventure Boot Camp, and for all my bitching and moaning I did, I will confess that it is probably the best work-out/exercise routine I have ever done.

If you have an hour in your day, and just want to put your head down and have someone beat you with a stick until you weep, then it is the place to go.  It really is a great way to get a workout if time is short and builds up your fitness level.

So I did that.  Though I did not lose much weight, it was not ABC’s fault.  I would need to lay that at the door of my chenin-blanc-and-chuckles diet.

But none the less, just doing ABC I recalled how much I have always wanted to run.

I have never run – and I have always convinced myself that I cannot run.

Long story, but the short of it is, that every step when I ran was excruciating, and I figured how much could I be doing wrong short of putting one foot in front of the other?

If it is painful, then odds are your body is telling you that you should not be doing it, well that is what I figured at any rate.

Went to a podiatrist, and he also told me that “not everyone is designed to run” which I took to be a clear message that I should not run.

Back to the present day.

A lot of ABC’s work out is running – it is great cardio and it really takes your work out to a whole new level.

So though you are not running for miles and miles, you are doing push-ups, then running around a field, then doing jumping jacks and then running around a field.  So there is no rest between the weight work outs, you are permanently gasping for breath, and hoping you will just die and then it will all be over.

While doing the running at ABC  I realized I was actually running.

Granted, not terribly fast, and I did sound like I was suffering from emphysema, but I was still running and my feet/ankles/knees did not feel like they were coming apart at the joints.

I spoke to ABC coach, and she recommended a running guy, as I said I wanted to learn to run, and felt a bit of one-on-one is what I needed to gain confidence.

I worked with running guy for a month.

First session – we walked for 20 minutes, then we ran for 3 minutes.  I seriously nearly threw up on the sidewalk.  Not the polite vomit, but the one where you are leaning over and vomitting so much you are just dry heaving and your eyes are watering – that kind of throwing up.

I then spent the next 37 minutes trying to get my breath back.

I figured he would call the next day, and suggest we stop at session one, as I clearly had shown that I could not run.

He didn’t call.

We did session two, and he said to me in response to my question of “have you ever met anyone you could not teach to run?” and he said “I have met many people who think they can’t run, but I have NEVER met anyone who can’t run.”

The dude was a legend.

We did three sessions a week, and though he never beat me with a stick, he knew what he had to do to get me do push myself.  He never asked me to do more than I thought I could do.

In a month he had me running two x 20 minute sessions in an hour.  I would have been less amazed if he had turned water into wine!

I am not running really fast, but I am running, and that for me is HUGE.

I can also hold a basic conversation and run.  I am not gasping and wheezing – it is all quite fabulous (if you are into that sort of thing.)

So at the moment, my mate Alice and I are setting our alarms for 5am three times a week.  We both wish/pray that the other will sms to cancel.

The alarm goes off at 5am, we get our clothes on, attempt to brush our teeth, then I drive to her house and we both schlep out at 5:30am for an hour of running/walking.

We walk for 20 minutes to warm up.  Then we start running.

This morning we ran for 20 minutes – and we both felt like Rocky who ran up the step of the Philadelphia Museum of Art.  I really would love to say that there is a monumental soundtrack in my brain at the time, but in reality all that is going though my head is “motherf*cker.”

After our 20 minute run/stumble/crawl, we walk for 10 minutes, then we do a 5 minute run-as-fast-as-you-can-without-throwing-up-on-the-sidewalk, and then we end with a 5 minute limp home.

I really really hate exercise, but for an hour two or three times a week, Alice and I go out and run, and we feel like super-heros when we are finished.

It is pretty heady stuff, we are like the kings of the world there!

<We have also committed to do a half-marathon soon, so we are all ambitious and stuff.>

<sidebar: the title of the post makes reference to a scene from the Simpsons where Lisa Simpson acted out a scene from Rocky>

Bath time and rubber ducks ….

My kids are in the bath and I am trying to ignore them and catch up on some blogs and forums.

All three of them are in the en-suite bathroom, so I can see them in the bath though I am at my computer.  Thought I would add that in before you start dialing ChildLine again.

Anyway, Isabelle is screaming because Georgia took her toy.

Connor grabs the toy away from Georgia and gives it back to Isabelle, so now Georgia is screaming – but a high pitched girl scream that makes dogs in the neighbourhood sit up and take notice.

I hear Connor chirp – at Georgia -in a total serious voice : “Get a hold of yourself lady!”

I snorted a bit …… I think Connor is going to have many amusing years ahead of him, and I am going to have several call in to the headmaster’s office.

Breath …. just breath …

Recently someone made an observation which was a bit of an “ah-ha” moment for me.

She commented that as  a child you experience your experiences through the eyes of a child.  When you revert back to the incident through hyno-therapy and even through therapy as an adult, you often experience it again as a child and are re-traumatized.

The value in being able to look back is not so that you live through every horrific detail, but so that you are able to look back on that childhood experience as an adult and maybe try to understand it better.  Processing it as an adult, and trying to heal is the aim – one baby step at a time.

That really is what it is about, this looking back and reflecting. It is often painful, as you have to pick at the rancid sore that has an old crusty scab holding the delicate pieces of flesh together – it is painful and smells bad.

I agree that there is value in taking your ugly experiences and packing them into a box.

Putting that box into a cupboard and closing the door, and going “I’m done with that shit, let me move on.”

There is total value there.  I am all for that tactic.  Been there bought the dozen box set.

Unfortunately it does not always work.  Even when it does work, it does not work for very long.

The googlies do start to find gaps in the seal of the box.  They do start to crawl and slither their way out of your tightly strapped box.  They find gaps and creep through your finely constructed cupboard. The googlies find their way into your bed at night.

You go to sleep thinking all is well in the land of what-ever-you-have-created.  One morning you wake up to find that suddenly the sun does not warm your face the way it did the day before.

The hug of your loved one, has a bit of an awkward feel about it.  Everything you touch feels a bit sharper and more jagged.  The glow of the morning seems a bit duller than you remember it being.

You do not wake up and your life has gone to hell in a hand-basket, it happens one tiny tear or crack at a time.

Yesterday’s post was not about suddenly deciding today was the day that I have a total meltdown.

It was something that has always been there and is the underlying reason why I started this blog in the first place.

One comment made by one caller on a radio station, set off a tide of emotions that literally threw me to the floor like a raggedy-Anne doll, clutching my chest in anguish.

This week has been a very emotional one for both Kennith and I.

Kennith’s grandmother died last week, and we attended her funeral on Thursday.  Her death affected Kennith deeply and his sadness and loss was heart-wrenching to witness.  I have never known Kennith to experience such sadness or emotion, so it was painful for him and our family.

The emotions of the funeral, combined with a very “honest” therapy session on Tuesday, and the disclosure of some of my things to Kennith on Wednesday night was the crack in the proverbial dyke.

I agree that I wish I could just “get over my stuff” – I really really do.

I have said it a thousand times.  If someone could give me a pill, that would make me “normal” I would take it – I would take it every day.  I would even opt to take it as a suppository if that made it more effective.

As yet, I have not found THAT pill. I have tried several pills, and several combinations of pills.  But those pills do not make you “forget and move on.”

They often just help you get out of bed, get your shoes on and shuffle through your day.  And some days that is all you can do.  And all someone can expect from you.

I have realized that since I started writing this blog more than a year ago, I have changed as a person and I have evolved.  I continue to evolve.  I am more aware of who I am and what makes me do what I do.

There are so many things in my life that I am thankful for.  Part of it is having the privilege of being able to write about my stuff.

It allows me to try to understand some things that have often been choking inside me for years.  It is liberating and this blog has become very important to me.

I am grateful that I have Kennith.  He is that person who can look into my soul.  Even when he sees my darkness and my unbearable pain, he chooses to still hold me close and tell me he loves me – even when I am particularly brutal and am pushing him away.

I do not make his life easy.  I know his life could be easier if he chose a bit more wisely back on the 17 July 1994 – it really could have been.

But he chose me in his drunk state (which he may use as his defense when we end up in divorce court).

I feel I have fought him every step of the way.  I have been honest that I come with huge amounts of carry-on baggage.  He has still chosen to stand with me time and time again even when the situation appears hopeless.  For that I am ever grateful.

I have three divine children, who challenge my sense of sanity each and every day.

I get to watch them put on sunglasses to brush their teeth, smile at me as they slurp porridge out of their bowls, steal the last cheese curl out of the packet and forget to flush the toilet … I get to experience all of those little things, and as strange as it sounds, it is those things that remind me that it is worth getting out of bed in the mornings.

I do however have the right to be angry that maybe I did not get the best hand in life.

I get the right to be upset that my parents did not do for me what they should have or could have done.  They did not take enough care with me.

I get that right – I have earned it!!  I do not have to explain it or justify it with anyone to feel how I feel –  I just do.

However I have not earned the right to make the same mistakes. Repeat the same poor judgment and carelessness towards my kids.

I do not get to use that “get out of jail-free” card.

I can’t change my sh*t, it has happened and it is there.  Clicking my heels together three times, does not seem to make it all change either, so here I am stuck.

But I make an effort each and every day TO NOT play it forward onto my kids.  Some days I do  better job than other days.

Even when I am screaming like a banshee in the passage, I always let them know that though I am angry, deranged and probably certifiable, I love them with a fierceness that is indescribable.

I would kill for them.  I would take a bullet for them, and I would hunt the wretch down who ever laid a hand on them and caused them pain.   I have always got their back, and they know that no matter what, I will and I am there for them.

They never have to worry that they are alone, or that when they cry at night no one will come.

I hope that through the uncombed hair, and the spittle on my chin, my kids can hear that message.

I know by best is not always good enough, and with that in mind, I wake up each morning and decide that maybe today is the day when I get it right!

The one where I puke … emotionally

Background:  I wrote this post yesterday.  I was angry and hurt.  I had just been to a therapy session that went well, as therapy does.  But it had opened some particularly festering sores.  It had scratched things open that I had put into boxes and kicked under beds years ago.

I was going to push the button that said “publish” and then I realised I was writing this from a very hurt and very painful place.  I then decided to hold on it, I dropped it into my draft tray and left it there.

Kennith and I spoke last night and I confided in him about things that had happened to me, that I had never told him about. Partly because (a) I had not thought about them in years (b) I had hidden them away to protect myself.

So here is the post from yesterday, but slightly edited ….

I was listening to Cape Talk on my drive about today and they were talking about the Seven Myths of Perfect Parenting and I was a bit taken back.

Here is the list just so you can get some  context:-

“I have to be a great parent to be good enough.”

“I have to parent perfectly so my kids will turn out okay.”

“Kids are scarred for life by the mistakes of their parents.” * file that one away for later shall we.

“Someone out there knows exactly how to do parenting the right way.”

“If I don’t teach them everything they need to know, I’m a failure as a parent.”

“If I don’t provide them with everything they want, I’m failing as a provider.”

“It’s important that I be my kids’ friend.”

Loads of moms were phoning in to agree that most of the myths. They were saying yes these were just myths.

Unfortunately I could not listen to the entire piece as I had to get out of the car at some point.  Well to be honest, if I did not have to get out of the car, I might well have thrown myself into moving traffic ….

For the little bit I was listening to I started to get upset, like angry and then crying upset. (I also realised that my anger and reaction was totally out of the what would be deemed suitable reaction for what was happening on the show – but it seemed to hit a nerve with me.)

I agreed with many of these statements.  These are myths and we often labour ourselves trying to live up to these ideals, which are things we should toss out with last night’s left over wine.

The thing that I was not hearing from these moms who were phoning in, was that you can actually totally “fek” your kid up – like start-investing-in-a-therapy-fund-now-and-abandon-the-university-education-one level of fek up.

I accept that as parents we will not be the perfect parent.  I am the poster parent for NOT PERFECT PARENTING – I barely make it on the ballot for “good enough parenting”.

As parents, we will get things wrong, and often kids will be okay …. but – and here is the kicker – some kids will be fine, and others won’t (presenting exhibit A).

I am probably not going to be eloquent here, as my nerves are raw and ragged.

As parents you can totally fuck it up.  The effects will resound in our children’s lives, well past adolescents and into adulthood and they will arrive like monsters in the middle of the night or when you lean in to hug your nearest and dearest.

Parents cannot use the “get out of jail free card” and “well, I did the best I could” – that shit does not work for me.

I know I am using profanity, but I am really worked up … so give me some latitude before you report me to the nanny-police.

I sit here as the result of the “I did the best I could with what I had” parenting.

As a thirty freak’n eight years old I am a total stuff up.

We can argue for hours how really stuffed up I am, and who gets to define the level of normal versus stuff up.  In my world, I get to make the rules, and I am pretty stuffed up on even a good day – I have a doctor’s note to tell me so.

When you have some time, I will give you a list.  Suffice to say that I can win an Academy Award for my ability to “act normal” in so many situation it will bring a tear even to the most jaded eye.

I have relationship issues.  I do not have good relationships to mould mine on, I have no clue what I am doing.  So I wing it.

Socially I am anxious, because I cannot relax into any social situation.

I do not know what is right and wrong in a social setting.  Everything is an act.  Everything is “hey look at what so-and-so is doing, I will replicate their action.”  But then I drink tons of wine, and it makes me somehow feel better and often behave inappropriately.

I struggle with motherhood each and every day.  I am not talking about the “usual” way we all struggle with motherhood.

I feel like I am Sigourney Weaver and I have just had an alien baby and I am trying to mother it.  No one has the same alien baby, and we are not on alien baby’s planet, so there are not self-help books on the problems I am experiencing.  I am alien, the baby is alien and we are being dragged to a mommy and baby group, where stupid mothers are showing off their advanced children in onesies.

I do not know how to parent or be a mother because I have no one to emulate.  Everything, every thing I do is hard – nothing has the faintest smell of natural to me.

When under stress I resort to being an “ugly almost abusive” mother – yes, go and dial child-line now, I will wait while you find the number.

I cannot tell you the discomfort I feel when my children try to hug me or touch me – because of my discomfort with physical contact! (how is them apples for a reveal?)

I struggle to have a relationship with Kennith, who is my partner of 17 years. He is loving, reliable, and a truly wonderful human being – but  I do not form healthy attachments  (my new word of the week) so I always keep him at an arm’s length in every possible area.

I form no permanent attachments to people or objects.  Nothing is permanent in my world. (watch me write off my father, my brother and anything else that just gets a bit too hard)

I have learnt from a young age that there is no one to depend on.  No one to fall back on.  No one who has my back.

When the shit hits the fan, or there was something that went so wrong or when I needed to run to someone and just be held and comforted, that person was never there.  Ever!

On the upside I was not an anxious attacher, as I always knew there would be no one there.   It was me – it was me alone!  I have formed an independent attachment.

Sure, I hear you say – that is super, you are independent, you are strong and resilient and look at all you have achieved?

Of course I am – I have the cuts and bruises to show for it, but I am a limping damaged individual whose ever day is a pretense of “normality”.

Nothing I do is easy.  Nothing I do feels normal.   I “act” my way through nearly every situation.

I look around and think “how should I stand to fit in here” “what is the right thing to do here to appear normal” and then I do it.  The person I most identify with is “Dexter’ – serial killer movie guy!

Do you know how exhausting and draining it is to act a part every single day – each and every day –with everything?  Quick answer – it is excruciating and totally exhausting.

I can never ever open up to Kennith, or rely on him because I cannot rely on him to be there for me (though he has shown me a thousand times over that he will always be there for me).

I cannot believe in my heart of hearts that he can be relied on.

Is not the act of loving someone just that? That you allow yourself to fall into them (physically/spiritually or what ever) totally.  You make yourself vulnerable to them, and allow them to be there for you when you fall or allow yourself to fall.

I don’t.   I can’t.

Every time Kennith leaves the house, I have made a mental plan that he is not coming back.

I have already worked out a plan of what I will do when he does not come back.  Even before he has completely reversed out the drive way.  I have worked out what I will say when people offer me their condolences – I know what the fitting response should be.

I cannot love Kennith in that totally unabandoned run-through-the-daisies sort of way … I can’t love anyone in that way.  I am robbed, and so is he (my poor egg!).

Why?  Because I cannot trust he will be there when I need him to be.  I do not trust anyone.

We can argue that Kennith  is a helluva reliable guy, and he has always been there for you.  He is and always has been– a good egg!  It is nothing that he has done, but he unfortunately bears the brunt of it.

My reality (maybe not THE reality), but MY  REALITY is still to only depend on me.  I cannot trust another.

That is what I have been taught from a very young age.  The lesson has been reinforced time and time again.  My coping or survival mechanism was created and I needed it to get through my shit, to survive my stuff.

I have spent years in therapy.  I have done psychologists, psychiatrists, hypnotherapists, psychologist-hyno-therapists, self help books, screaming into the night, ingestion large amounts of alcohol, anti-depressants, combining too much alcohol with sleeping tablets (the fun years) and short of singing kumba-ya around the fireplace, I feel I have done just about everything in the last 10 years to fix me.

What I know now is that I am a very broken individual.

There it is said – I am broken, and when all is said and done I actually can blame my parent (s), why shouldn’t I?

I have recently starting seeing a fabulous therapist.  She has given me a glimmer – a mild glimmer of hope that maybe, just maybe she can’t fix me totally, but she can repair me a little.

That alone is ALMOST enough to get me out of bed in the mornings.

I get at thirty-frek’n-eight to face ANOTHER long long road of healing, because in short of the crap my mother (and father) did because they thought “they did what they could” was good enough.

Now what has this to do with the Cape Talk show you wonder?

I am a result of “well we did the best we could” parenting!

Here I am – standing before you with all my idiosyncrasies and bizarre shit that I present every other day on this blog.

This is not a persona, this is not the dancing monkey show for pennies, this is my freak’n life!  Every tear, every cry in the shower, every just-get-through-today is me – this is my shit!

I have done my being angry at my mother because well she fucked up.   I had my year back in 2004 where I was angry all day every day at her.  It nearly killed me.  I got a bit of institutionalization, and though I did not get my peace, I did get a bit more self-aware.

I have not forgiven her – nope, not there yet.  I have however decided to construct a relationship with her that protects me, and still manages to give the impression of a largely functioning mother-and-daughter relationship.

On one level I accept it is done and nothing can be undone. There is no Cntl+Z on my life!

Someone who loves me, commented that  I should not remain in the past, I should move on.

I am not here out of choice. I do not choose to drag this shit with me to make myself a more interesting person or so that I can self-fund the wine community of the Western Cape.  I am here because I DO NOT HAVE ANY CHOICE and I DID NOT DO THIS SHIT TO ME!

I do not choose to be this crap horrible individual who finds happiness bitter, and well not very often.

I do feel an overriding urge to bitch slap someone who tells me to “decide to wake up happy and then I will be!”

My childhood shit is being dragged into my adult hood and has paralyzing me.

I totally get that other people have crappier childhoods than me, and they go on to be president or CEO’s , whoop-whoop!!  Big fat ice-cream lollipop for them.

Me, not so much.

I do not care that my mother did the best she could.

I actually do not give a hoot, good enough was not enough on this one.

What I do care about is that I managed to get through my child and adolescent years and forced myself to be a good scholar and a good girl.  I played by the rules, and I decided that I needed to get to adulthood in one piece – without any help from my family situation.

Everything I did I did on my own!  I survived.

I am angry today because at thirty freaking eight, I am still fixing the crap that my mother did because she did not do good parenting.

And that folks is the bitter and ugly truth.

So when you sit and make your kids feel better that there are no monsters under the bed, maybe you can also give some thought that the scarier monster is the one calling themselves parent!

<I am sure tomorrow I will publish a retracting post, as clearly this one is way too emotional and is sounding a little fractured, but this, this is how I feel right now…sleep well…>

Sunshine to warm the soul …

I really beat myself up that I do not spend enough time with my kids.  But when I am spending time with my kids, I wonder if they will notice if I slip away, pour myself some (more) wine and  chat on Facebook or read some blogs.

So, yes I am perfect in my imperfection and fail miserably at most things motherhood in nature.  But there we go, such is the way in my neck of the woods.

Isabelle is my baby and maybe because she is the baby I love her with a gushy gurglie kind of love.  I love her pudginess as she snuggles close to me.  I melt when she gives me a toothy grin.  My heart wants to burst when she pushes her face into my neck, or when she gives me a zerbit for a kiss.

I absolutely adore this little girl more than I can explain in any rational you-appear-to-not-actually-have-had-anything-to-drink-this-time-but-are-babbling-uncontrollably manner.

I am not trying to take away from how much I love my other children, but my love for them is different.

Connor is eight and pretty self-sufficient.  He is at the dirty nails, scraped knees, snot coming out of his nose stage, where he regales me with stories of what bait to use to catch which fish.

Georgia is a law unto herself. She needs me for little more than wiping her bum, and maybe the odd snuggle at night – however I seem to be very useful when she is faced with creepy crawly or flying insects – moths specifically.

But Isabelle is my little fufie-nuffie (pronounced foo-fi noo-fi!

When I get home from work, I say hello to everyone and then try and go for a little walk with Isabelle up our road.

It is a walk of about 100 metres, and she toddles as a 16 month old does.  She grips my hand firmly with her pudgy sticky fingers and I love every moment of it.  She points at things and goes “caaaaa….” and I sort of just stand around with her aglow in the wonder of this blonde-haired-blue-eyed piece of heaven walking next to me.

It is our little moment of quiet, in amongst all the time that she has to share my attention with everyone and everything else.

On Saturday morning, I bathed Isabellle.  When I took her out of the bath, I put her on the mat on her bedroom floor.  The sun was shining through the window and made a nice warm patch.  I sat on the floor with her and she was on my lap.

I was rubbing cream on her skin – and for no other reason than that it made me feel good to sit with her and massage her – she actually did not need the cream.

She was quiet and sort of leaned in to me.  I lay her on her back and massages her legs and her chubby toes.  She just lay there and serenely looked out the window.  When I massaged each toe, she made a light giggling sound, that was very sweet, but she did not try to pull her feet away.

I massaged her arms and her fingers and she just lay on her back and smiled at me.

It really was such a wonderful little moment in time that I got to spend with her and just have some peace and quiet, with some one-on- one time with her.  She came and sat on my lap, and I rubbed her shoulders and she put her head against my chest – not in a clingy way, just rested against me, it was so peaceful and blissful and reminded me why I like kids so much.

Kennith made her a bottle. I dressed Isabelle for her late morning sleep.  It was all quite wonderful.

I was putting her into cot, and spoke in a soft voice, saying pretty things to her and telling her how precious she was and how lucky I am that I get to be a part of her life.

Georgia then came bounding into the room singing…

I asked Georgia to please be quiet as I was putting Isabellle in bed, and she needed to leave the room – still using my sweet I-am-earth-mother voice.  Georgia then upped the tempo and not only sang, but danced around the room.

Still retaining the illusion of peace-mother, I asked her in a slightly less sweet voice for Georgia to please leave, as Isabelle was going to sleep (and she was spoiling the entire moment here!).

Georgia it seems, does not respond to sweet and light voice – and moved to the second chorus of the song in a more up-beat tempo, to which I responded “Get out of the room, NOW!”

Georgia then backed out and stood in the doorway and continued to sing her song loudly … to which I in turn responded: “GET OUT OF THIS DAMN ROOM NOW!! WHAT THE HELL IS WRONG WITH YOU, WHY CAN YOU NOT HEAR ME THE FIRST TIME, NOW MOVE BEFORE I GIVE YOU A HIDING ON YOUR BUM! GO!”

Georgia left the room.

I glanced down at Isabelle to see if she was still in her mom-and-I-are-at-peace-and-this-is-a-magic-moment place.  It seemed she was blissfully warm and snuggly in her pink blanket, clinging to her play-dog and sucking on her bottle with blue eyes firmly fixed on mommy!

‘good sleep my angel!”

<now let me go and find your sister so I can make good on my promise of giving her a damn hiding….>

Rantings of a crazy Monday-morning-mom …..

I am so angry this morning, like spitting angry.

It started this morning when I heard Isabelle starting to bleat. I just thought, if she could be quiet just a little longer, I can get just a little more sleep – I am exhausted and it feels as if someone has been hitting me with a large stick,and I am just not ready to face this week yet.  It is not even 6am dammit.

Isabelle fortunately did quiet down.  I figured, tick, close eyes, doze a bit and put off the inevitable.

Kennith is a morning guy and likes to prod me in the back with his appendage in the morning – this does nothing for my sense of humour.  It just makes me act better.  I take faking sleep to an entirely new level.  I have the deep breathing and total body paralyses look down to a fine art for occasion just like these.

I was lying there faking sleep, and Connor burst into the room sobbing and all I got was “money” and “lost” and snot and crying.  I was not sure if I should “wake” from my fake sleep or carry on faking.

Kennith sprung out of bed – put some pants on – which I am sure my mom and my aunt (who are our present houseguests) will be ever thankful for.  Kennith dove down the passage to assess what the hell was going on.

Connor has just hysterical.

It turned out he lost his money IN HIS wallet that he was looking inside of for his money.   How one does that is not clear to me, so I can’t even explain it to you.  I had my own set of problems to deal with.  So I did not spend too much time going over that particular crisis.

I went to get Georgia up.  She kept telling me she was so tired that she will be spending the day in bed:  “Er no! Now get your arse out of bed and get your fairy outfit on!”

Georgia has a fairy outfit she is obsessed with.  I have given up the good fight of dressing her appropriately.  I have instead opted  to allow her to wear her orange fairy outfit to school on a Monday.  It has orange wings and a small clutch bag – as is the pre-requisite with all things fairy.

I go and try and find a bottle to give Isabelle milk – cannot find one.  No bottle in sight, in the house of a thousand baby bottles, so the hunt begins.

I return to Isabelle – she is all happy and gurglie, which always makes me feel all happy and gurglie as well.  She is such a happy gorgeous soul.  I too am a happy soul when I am greeted with a pee nappy, and not a poo nappy first thing in the morning.  I took that as a sign that this morning was going to go well – I was very mistaken.

My aunt asked me for the sewing kit – I stopped trying to find a bottle, and went to find the sewing kit instead. Found kit.

I found a bottle, cleaned it and made Isabelle some warm milk.

Screamed at Georgia to get out of bed and into her damn fairy outfit. (I might have used profanity!)

Reminded Connor to get his school bag ready, grab his poster (for his oral) and start making his way to the kitchen for breakfast.

I am still in my sleep shirt.

I make Kennith coffee, and me some tea.

I put the kids breakfast out.  Georgia pours her milk and messes it all over the counter.  I clean this up and then realise that time is ticking by and I still have not even started my morning ablutions.

Leave them eating breakfast, go down the passage to see why Isabelle is crying.  Find her toy dog, solve that problem and start making my way to the room so I can get ready.

Georgia is crying because she has messed pronutro on her fairy outfit.  I go back to the kitchen to clean her up.

Connor finishes his breakfast.  I remind him that he needs to brush his teeth, do his hair,  blow his nose and get his school stuff and the poster together and start making his way to the car.  He gos: “yes mom.”

Georgia decides she has had enough to eat, and I have had enough of cleaning Pronutro off her.  I tell her to go and brush her teeth.

She gets to the bathroom and then cries because Connor knocks her with the door, by accident.  I explain that she is fine, and I give the miracle-mother-kiss-that-makes everything all right.   I remind her that she needs to brush her teeth and get a move on.

I head back to the room and find a homework book and some school stuff on the bed – I ask Kennith where this comes from.  Kennith says that Connor dropped it there this morning i.e. before 6am!

I read the note and see that I need to cover a book and bake some cupcakes that need to be at school on the 1 November!

Of course I sh*t myself – why does he keep doing this to me?  I know I am an inept parent, but at least let me have a fighting chance at getting it right.

I call Connor and give him a total tongue lashing.  Which actually is quite easy, as I have had the same conversation several times so I am working off a script.

I realise that I am angry, and a bit more angry than the situation calls for.  Once I have finished doing my uit-kak I decide I am not going to punish him now, as it would be done in anger, so I send him on his way but with the warning that there will be punishment later.

I then have to stop to find Georgia’s toothbrush which was lost (Isabelle had walked off with it and put it in another room.)   I put toothpaste on the toothbrush and send her back to the bathroom to finish up.

I ask my mom to please cover Connor’s school book as it is now 07:18 and I need to leave at 07:30.  I stand there whilst my mom explains she cannot cover books and that my aunt should do it.  I am screaming inside – like loudly at this point – but I am standing in the passage in my sleep shirt trying to look serene.

I find plastic wrap, pair of scissors, tape and set it out, then I try to dash for the shower.  My aunt asks me for pegs, as she uses this for covering books.  I do not even ask why – I have already given up on life at this point.  I go out the back door, still in my sleep shirt and get some pegs off the line.

I know I am way beyond cross at this point, as my inner voices have just stopped talking to me.  They have all gone off to their respective corners to fume.

Leave pegs with my aunt, I go past the kids and remind Georgia to finish brushing her teeth – she has distracted herself and is singing the elephant song.  I remind her to get her bag, and ask Pepe to please brush her hair (Georgia’s hair, not Pepe’s hair ….just to clarify the ambiguity there).

Before I head back to the room.  On the way I find Connor and remind him to take his medication, brush his hair, brush his teeth, get his poster, get his school bag, and go over his oral (which he must do today) while he is waiting for me and starting aiming to the car as I am leaving shortly.

I get in the shower it is a little past 07:25 – brush my teeth, wash my hair, condition my hair, try to put soap onto skin, rinse off, dash out of the shower.

Isabelle is crying as she wants to come into the room.  I wrap a towel around myself and go and fetch her.   I see the workers standing at our front gate – we are doing renovations.  I go and find Pepe and ask her to please go and unlock for them, and then I head back to the room with Isabelle in tow.

I remind Connor to get his poster, practice his oral, grab his bag and head to the car.

I ask Georgia to get her bag and head for the car.

I find my mom – as I realise that reversing is going to be a challenge as she has parked behind the garage I am in. I ask her to reverse her car as I cannot get out.

She starts telling me a story, which I cannot actually listen to, as I am dripping with a  brown towel wrapped around me. I still need to get ready and it is now 07:30.

I take Isabelle to the room, get dressed.  Grab the last of the fancy-dress stuff together (we went to a Halloween Party on Saturday), take all the coffee cups to the kitchen.  I start screaming down the passage ‘everyone get in the car, we are leaving.”

I am trying to brush my hair, which is dripping as I have had no time to dry it.  Make-up of any kind is a nicety I have totally abandoned.  I am thankful I have shoes on at this point.

I grab my bag. Isabelle starts to cry as she realizes I am leaving. I am trying to say goodbye to everyone – my mom and aunt will be leaving a bit later, so I won’t see them tonight, so we are doing the “good bye have a safe trip” and I am trying to sooth Isabelle.

Fortunately Pepe comes to the rescue and takes Isabelle’s hand, and they sort of stand around on the stairs and Isabelle looks content enough.

Kids are in the car, I am grabbing odds and ends as I go and I am making my way to the garage.

Georgia comes up the stairs screaming.  She cannot find her orange fairy bag and is having a total melt-down of epic proportion.

Now we are doing a hunt around the house to find the flaming bag.  Finally find bag – always in the last place you look it would seem – we throw ourselves into car.

I then realise I have forgotten my diary.  Sh*t, so I race up the stairs, go back to the room, grab it, get back in the car.  I am way past irritable now (not surprisingly as you may be able to empathize).

In car, start car and  then realise the remote to the garage door is not in the car.  Fek!!  I get out of car – after cussing severely – and go and find that.

Get back in the car, open garage, reverse, and get on our way.  The kids are all looking a little wide eyed and scared of crazy mommy right now!

07:53

While we are driving I am telling Connor that I am tasked to remember all his stuff, Georgia’s stuff, Isabelles’ stuff, dad’s stuff as he keeps forgetting stuff and then my stuff.

It is unfair to expect me to remember everyone’s things and my own.  And when I ask him to do something, he needs to do it.  And he knows he needs to get home from school, sort his school bag out, and give me any notes/letters/requests for baked goods at least the night before.

I explain this is a common theme of my rants and I am a little bit at my wits end.

I said next time he does it, I will be taking R10.00 from his saving-for-a-DS-fund.  If he does not give me the note (because he has forgotten, and does not want to lose the R10.00) and I find out, I will then take R20.00.

Begrudgingly he agrees – he is not happy about it, but he agrees.  So on we drive.

Georgia meanwhile is making spider shapes with her hands and wants me to keep looking.  I explain I am driving and can’t keep checking on her designs, to which she then goes “aaaaawwwww” and does a little sulk.

I am trying to  calm down, and think: “Just get to work.  Do not take out your frustrations on the kids.  You do not want to have the kids going to school upset, or telling teacher that there mom is a screaming ranting psychotic freak!  You have got about 12 minutes to change their perception of you …. you can do it…. just take deep breathes and calm it down ……the worst of it is over, you just need to drop them off … come on, the end is in sight!!”

Me talking to Connor: “Okay, so you are ready with your oral.  Please put your school book in your bag, so you do not forget it.  I hope you remembered your poster!”

Judging by the look of horror on his face I realized he has forgotten the poster – the one I made on the History of Transport and the one I have reminded him to pack in the car at least six times this morning alone!

I TOTALLY UNEQUITABLY  SH*T IN MY PANTS RIGHT THERE!

Totally!

I do a 180 degree hand brake turn  in traffic.  I drive back to the house.  Thw difference here is that I was dead quiet.  Because I am  now so cross, that if I said what was in my head, I would be contributing to childhood-therapy-with-a-psyciatrist for the rest of my children’s natural life.

I stop the car, he gets his poster, I drop him off at school, it is now 08h15.  He is late, Georgia is late.  I walk in to my 08h30 morning meeting – late, and really angry!

Fabulous – I fekn hate Monday mornings!

Georgia has reminded me on several occasions that fek’n is a bad word – I might just revert back to saying fucking because it would seem I am living in hell anyway, I might as well go there for cussing …..