Saving myself one script at a time ….

I saw my brand new shiny therapist/psychiatrist on Monday.

I was very glad to find her in an emergency, and well, I was having an emergency. July was just not going to be good enough to wait for the other guy, so I kicked him to the curb, as you do with psychiatrists.

Being me, by Saturday I thought I felt better (that was after I had made the appointment.)

By Sunday I thought I was miraculously healed, so did not really need to see a doctor, and was totally over-reacting by making this appointment.  I mean, really!  Of course I am fine.  Never been better, in actual fact.

I usually get instantly cured the minute I sit in a doctor’s waiting room, and alway feel a bit sheepish going inside to tell them I am ill, when really I am fine, really, and I am sorry to be wasting your time, and try to leave as quickly as I can.

Then Connor chewed pork rind in my ear on Sunday afternoon, and I went a bit postal.

I was really glad I had Monday’s appointment scheduled.  Really glad, as I felt I had been hanging on by what ever you hang on with when your nails have been pulled from your finger nail beds.  Bloody stumps I would hazard a guess.

If you have not been to a therapist before, I won’t bore you with too much detail.

The short of it is that you spend an hour sitting around talking about yourself, while someone writes furiously and goes “uh huh” quite a bit.  Almost like a first date, just you pay by the hour here and no one is buying you drinks, to get you in the mood.

It is inevitable that you will cry – a great deal – even when you chew the inside of your lip to stop yourself crying.

I tend to find reasons why not to like someone.  That way all I have to do is to wait until I find “the thing” and then I can go “see, I knew I did not like you…”

I found it hard not to like Dr D even if just a little bit.  Not because she was not adorably cute or brilliant, I found her sincere and familiar, and human.  And well, just real …

She reminded me of a person who I chat to on a forum (and who I have met in real life) who goes by the avatar, Lo**F – which was strange, but oddly familiar.

A few strange things occured in the hour.

Strange #1

I was talking about something else totally, and out of the blue she goes “When did your father die?”

I stopped talking as I think I was talking about lemon meringue pie ior something, and I said “You know that is a bit out of left field right?”

And she said “Yes it was…” and then smiled and repeated the question: “So when did your father die?”

I told her the year, and she sort of looked at me, smiled slightly and carried on writing whilst I continued to tell her about Lemon Meringue pie.

Strange #2

She asked me something and I explained my religious belief system and my sense of spirituality.

Both of which I can summarise politely as being somewhat “barren and lacking in an anchor” at this stage in my life.

She stopped me and said “you are making me very anxious right now…”

I looked at her and I said: “You know I am the patient and you are the doctor.  I am panicky and anxious, and well …. it is not helping that you are getting anxious …. it is not helping me.  You know that right?”

Dr D: “Yes, but you are making me anxious, and I needed to take a breath before you carried on to centre myself and to reduce my anxiety that you are causing in me.”

Okay ….

Strange #3

She asked me if I would like on the doctor’s bed thing – I was sitting in the leather wing backed chair at the time.

I asked why and she said she wanted to help me relax and try to panic less.  I told her lying on a bed behind a screen in a stranger’s office was not going to make me panic less or relax.

I asked her what  exactly she was going to be doing while I was lying there.

She said she was not going to touch me.  But was going to put her hands above me, to assist me and transfer some of her calm energy to me (or something like that.) – I think she said Reiki.  I asked if it mattered whether I believed in what she was doing, or whether it was okay I just lay there with my eyes closed.

She suggested it might help if I believed her, but lying there was fine too.

I said that she was making me deeply sceptical about this entire process, but if she wanted me to have a 5 minute lie down on her table, then that was fine, as long as she did not physically touch me and I could leave my shoes on.

I lay on the bed, closed my eyes, listened to my heart racing and the rather LOUD ticking of the wall clock. I did not get calmer or more relaxed, but that might have been because the receptionist kept buzzing through that her next appointment had arrived.

Our time together came to an end.

We had spoken at length that I was not a fan of medication and had “gone it alone” for some time, and at about the time that she was congratulating on my “not taking medication” stand point.

I interrupted her (as I knew she had another appointment waiting) and said: “But today is not that day.  I need a script, and I want a script today – I can come again and we can chat again another day.  But today I need a script!  I don’t care what you put on the script actually, as long as it reduces my anxiety and panic, as long as it makes me sleep through the night.”

Strange #4

She is writing out the script and goes, in a sort of by-the-by voice “Are you suicidal?”

I look at her, well, like she is crazy actually, and I go “The right answer is no, right?”  She hands me my script (granted only with enough meds for two weeks) and I skipped to the chemist.

No doubt I will be seeing her soon.

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The Naked News …. no really ….

Okay, Kennith knew I was going to do a post about this.

He also indicated that the truth and what I say on my blog is not necessarily the same thing.  However  in this  instances everything is the truth, so help me ….. and then I take a seat in the witness-box.

This morning I walk into the room, and I look at the television – and there is a woman with not a hint of wardrobe doing the news.

Nope, nothing suspicious about that.

I had heard about the “Naked News” – Kennith and I both listen to 567 Cape Talk and John Maytham had mentioned it earlier this week.

The point is some one had reported it to the broadcasting police as being something so offensive and moral corrupt, well that it was just bad.

The BCCSA (Broadcasting Complaints Commission of South Africa) then said, and I para-phrase: “Listen Granny Murray, if you do not like it switch the fkn channel and watch something else.  If a woman feels that the job she wants is to read the news without her clothes on, with a well waxed bikini line, then let her. There is absolutely nothing degrading to women at large in reading the news naked.  If she is not fornicating or trying to pimp herself and it is after 11pm, when all good children should be in bed then it is fine. If you do not like it, just flick the goddamn channel.”

I heard the comments and it did occur to me that it was odd that people read the news in the nude, and then I thought or Riaan Cruywagen or Debroh Patter in the nik, and then I just felt awkward, and pushed the thought out of my mind.

However it would appear that Kennith is a different animal.

So back to my story – or my rendition of it.

I walk in to the room this morning and the Naked News is on.

I know this for two reasons: 1.  There was a naked girl (like totally naked) reading the news and 2.  There was a black and red banner on the screen telling you it was the Naked News.

I looked at it and then looked at Kennith, and asked the rhetoric question (with a slightly raised eyebrow): “What ARE you watching?”

Kennith goes: “The Naked News…”

Me: “Mmmm, I see that.”

I think for a few moments ……

Me: “Okay, but what is it doing on our television at 08h30…?”

Kennith: “I PVR’d it….”

Me: “You PVR’d the Naked News….seriously?”

Kennith: “Yes, they were talking about it on CapeTalk and I wanted to see what it was about…”

Me – looking at the television again: “Well it is clear what it is about ……… it is called the Naked News…”

Kennith:”I started watching it last night and started to fall asleep, so I PVR’d it to watch it this morning….

Me: “It is the Naked News, surely if you watched it for a few moments it might be ……… <Kennith cuts me off>

Kennith: “Shit, I just missed that…. I have to go back to see it again….”

Me: “What?”

Kennith: “There was a naked girl reading the news on a trampoline….”

Me: “Oh my gawd, seriously… you are rewinding to watch a naked girl jump on a trampoline?”

Kennith – in a very defensive tone – : “I am only watching this because they spoke about it on CapeTalk and I wanted to see what it was about… shit, where is that piece now ….. damn I can’t find it …..”

Me: “Kennith, you PVR’d the NAKED FKN NEWS …….and now you are rewinding in slow frame by frame so you can see a girl bouncing on a trampoline reading the news ………. seriously?”

I then felt I wanted to explain that if he walked in to the room and I was watching the Naked News as done by men, and I was violently rewinding on the PVR to watch a naked man with his p.e.nis sticking out jump on a trampoline, this entire morning might be a different conversation … bu somehow this entire situation is not a problem in his head.

But then I just got too tired for that and though I might just go to the toilet instead, because really he had PVR’d it and all.

Later in the day after our many many fights about Kennith playing computer games/iphone during suicide hour.

I chirp: “What was the statistic they mentioned in the Naked News about the amount of divorces attributed to the men playing computer games?”

Kennith: “……………..”

Me: “What was the statistic for divorce?”

Kennith: “You know I did not actually hear them say anything.  Were they actually reading the news?”

Me: “……………..”

A few moments pass ………

Kennith: “17% percent, I sure it was 17% percent………..”

No, it was 10% but nice guess.

Big white mom looking for men ……..

I often glance at the search results to show me how people arrived at my page – without a shadow of a doubt this is my week’s winner:

Shame, I hope he was not too disappointed.

My Big Black Dog …..

I know you want to talk about the colour of babies poo and what my kids are eating for breakfast, but unfortunately that is not what we are doing today.

Today is “Talk about my Depression and find a Therapist Day.”

Unofficial day of course, but I figure if enough of us get behind it we can have it declared a public holiday with the requisite president’s speech and youth parade at Soccer City.

I know that I am fortunate to be living in an age where we can talk about depression and medication with only a certain measure of shame and embarrassment.

I know there are folks who are embarrassed to admit that they pop the odd Prozac or shoot back a handful of Zoloft with their glass of wine, but I am not them folks.

I spent much of my teens and twenties realising that I was clearly certifiable insane and just wondering how long I could keep this secret until someone found out.  I did not realise I was depressed.  I did realise I was a very sad girl with some happy moments, but I accepted this as being “just the way things are.”

When I had Connor my wheels well and truly came off, then I really got afraid.  Of me.  For me.

I thought THEY would find out and take him away from me.  I became (more) paranoid and anxious and when something happened, it was not that he was going to get hurt, it was that he was going to die.  He was never going to get lost at the mall, he was going to be stolen.  (To be honest I have not outgrown that, I have just learnt to play it down.  Kennith insists I remain in reality as much as possible.)

Initially I did not really tell anyone about my little internal battle with my black dog of depression.  I really do not bring it up as a key part of conversation, it is a bit of a buzz killer I am afraid.

It is much easier to tell people who ask you “How are you?” to answer “I am fine….” because any deviation from this “party line” does make people feel a bit uncomfortable and then the conversation gets awkward.

People say ‘depression’  in a whisper like the way your grandparents say “cancer.”

Unfortunately the most common reaction from Joe Public when they hear the term ‘depression’ is to go “aw, sorry you are feeling a bit blue, I am sure tomorrow you will wake up and feel happy.’

Sweet but misguided.  Actually a bit annoying, but one smiles and nods, and sometimes waves as you flee the scene.

I did feel that admitting to it and if I ticked the block for “mental disorder” on the form (depression = mental illness/disorder on most forms) that it might be a problem for me when I changed medical aids.  It also might be a hinderance if I wanted to qualify as a pilot or apply to be a meals-on-wheels lady.

At some point I realised, agh, sod it, pilots are over rated and meals-on-wheels declined my application any way.

The thing that burns my arse about depression, is I barely understand it.  It is something about the chemicals in your brain being out of whack – for what ever reason, and the result is that you cannot actually “decide to be happy and then you will be …”  You seem to lack the chemicals to keep you or make you happy or smile or have a “normal” reaction.

Being me is not fun, not for me, and not for my family and for most people who know me.

Being happy is a chore, so right now I aim to be mildly content.  Mildly content is  a bit of an aim high achievement at the moment.

I am going for sort of content, some of the time.

I do however have faking content down pat, but the mask does slip off quite regularly, and some times I do not give a sh*t about keeping it up. (this week is that week)

My mate told me about a reference in Marian Keyes Newsletter about depression where she describes it as:-

“Wave after wave of black agony has been rolling up from my gut and bursting in my head and I’ve been powerless to stop it. I’ve heard people describe depression as feeling like they’re living behind glass, of being
numb and unable to experience anything, but for me, it has been totally different. It has been like being poisoned, it’s felt like my brain is squirting out terrible, black, toxic chemicals that poison any good thoughts. I’m well aware that I have an enviable life and there are bound to be people who think, “What the hell has she got to be depressed about?” But whatever has been wrong with me isn’t fixable by an attitude shift. Believe me I’ve tried (Mindfulness, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, gratitude lists…)”

That is probably the most apt description I have read for some time.

I am at that point – and granted I have been here for a bit, where I no longer care about the how and the what, I just want it to go away.  I want to be happy people.  Okay I do not want to be happy people.  Happy people (and clowns) scare me a bit.

I want to just be mildly content people who appear mildly content for the majority of the day.

I do not want to feel like I am carrying the world’s sh*t around with me.

What I want to do today (and for the last two weeks or so) is curl up in a ball  and then sob some more – which is fabulous, because I am not even sure exactly what I am sad about.

If I am done crying then I want to sleep – because sleep is about as close to feeling dead as you can get.  And that right now is quite an attractive feeling.  (sorry no fairies and unicorn stories for you today – insert sad smiley face icon here)

Unfortunately in my neck of the woods, pity parties are not really catered for.

I get up, put on my furry slippers, my grubby blue bathrobe, get kids ready, get myself ready, drag myself to work, try to really try to be productive, and then go home, get kids into bed, and find the quickest way I can get into bed and fall asleep.

And tomorrow repeat the cycle.

Last night on the drive home, I considered if I had a wee little car accident it might get me 3 – 8 days lying in a hospital bed and drinking luke warm milky tea and sleeping.

Then I thought with my luck, the car would be totalled and I would walk away totally unscathed and then have explain why I am a tosser driver, and well there is the insurance excess to consider and …..  lots of logistics, so maybe that was not my best idea of the day.

Just too complicated, and way too many things that could go wrong on that one.

It really is about as much fun as it sounds, really – I am not leaving out any of the really cool parts here.

I have made an appointment with a doctor who specialises in Cognitive Behaviour Therapy.

I plan to arrive with a list of issues and ask if he can make them each go away individually with what ever he does.  I clearly have no idea how it works, but right now I would pay for shinola if it made some of my sh&t go away.

I also think I am kidding myself – but delusions are part of it I guess.

I have also made an appointment with a pill doctor who has a large white script that he can write my name on in big block letters and write something along the lines of  Wellbutrin, Lexapro, Ambien, Valium or what ever else they are dishing out now a days …. I really do not care at this point.

The first appoinment I could get was in August!!  AUGUST? August!  “B&tch, do you realise how close I am to going off my frink’n head over here!!” …… The receptionist did not quite get my sense of humour and did not take to my tone of voice ….. or being called a bitch ….. …. but did bump me up to the 12 July and kept telling me how lucky I was ….. repeatedly.

Yep, I am feeling pretty darn lucky right now.

Sorry there is nothing funny on this post today.  Not feeling so funny today.

But that does lead me to the fact that you might need a bit of upliftment after this rather somber and (excuse the term) depressing post.

I seldom come across depression jokes, but I saw a few recently that made me snort a little bit:-

Q What’s good about depression?
A You always have your funeral planned in advance,

Q  What’s an advantage to Major Depression?
A  You never have to make your bed, since you’re always in it.

I was depressed last night so I called Lifeline. They’ve got a call center in Pakistan. I told them I was suicidal. They got all excited and asked if I could drive a truck.

Okay, that’s all I got ………………

(Illustrations credited to Matthew Johnstone)

Mr. Popper’s Penguins …. Movie Night

Last night Kennith and I took Connor to watch Mr. Popper’s Penguins at the Nu Metro V&A.

We can discuss our bad parenting and how we dragged our son out to a movie theatre on a school night in another post.

What is tragic is this is the only time that I have been to a movie house to see a movie in about two years – and I love movies. (The last movie I saw as The HangOver and I had Isabelle with me and she was about 7 days old, so suffice to say, it has been some time since I parked my bum onto plush seats and hooked my foot up into that space that the arm rest makes in the seats in the row infront of you.)

We got (really good) pasta, a glass (insert large) of wine at Primi and then headed to the movie with a trough of popcorn, and about a gallon of Coke (lite, because that will help, of course).

Connor has been very keen on a pet for some time.  Before we even got to the cinema, I had the “we are not getting a penguin” conversation, just to reinforce that there was no possibility of begging/pleading and nagging once we got out of the dark cinema.

No matter how cute and civilized penguins appear when they do synchronised dancing, I really do not want one!

My concern with Jim Carrey is that he is always “Ace Ventura” no matter what movie he is in.  I must confess to being a tad (very) reluctant to go and see this movie based on that fact.

But I reasoned that I did like him a bit more when I saw him in the rather dark comedy/drama “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind” and I thought he was really good as Count Olaf in “Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events.”  So with that in mind, maybe there was hope ……

So how was Mr. Popper’s Penguins, I hear you ask?

Carrey was funny as he monkeyed around with the penguins and he managed not to be outclassed by them too much.  He also managed not to steal the entire show.  I thought he was funny, but he did not appear to be trying so damn hard to be funny all the time, which is a relief.

Short summary:  The penguins enter Mr. Popper’s Jnr’s life as a final gift from his father who had visited every corner of the globe except his own home. The “now very absent (read dead)” Mr. Popper Snr means
to reinforce the importance of family on his son — an idea he evidently embraced very late in life — through these loving and loyal birds (I stole that blurb from somewhere).

Obviously Mr. Popper Jnr is having his own “family separation” issues and the idea that maybe pursuing “the next big thing” in life is not as important as finding ways to connect with his kids and estranged wife, is brought home to him with the aid of these huddle of penguins (proper collective noun there, who said I don’t teach you stuff?)

Good parts:  Jim Carrey is quite good and his physical comedy is pretty good. He is tall and wiry and does the bouncing around bits pretty well – he looks daft just standing there, so add a furry hat and sliding around on ice in his flat and he does not look any more daft.  The penguins are pretty cool, and each has it’s own personality – I liked Nimrod.

I thought there was a good balance between ridiculous and sanity, and there were a few funny quips along the way which made me smile.

Connor guffawed in several places!

Bad parts:  Jim Carrey is supposed to be this rather mean-spirited guy who is changed when the penguins come onto the scene and show him the error in his ways.  The problem is that Jim Carrey is always, well, Jim Carrey, so he does not really get this one quite right.

But I did think the point does come across, eventually, though in the usual saccharine sweet way of family movies.

At the end of the day, the movie is about penguins, them sliding around lots of ice, and a few “aawwww” moments, a few sprinkles of happy families and the message that sometimes we forget our families in the rush of life — and need a penguin (or 6) in a crate to remind us of that fact.

Connor liked the “butt” “poo” “pee” and “stupid” parts thrown into the dialogue – I saw him snorting with laughter at many spots.

He quite enjoyed the part where the penguin found itself spinning around inside the toilet, bowl – but toilet humour is pretty much Connor’s pinnacle of high-end comedy.

On a scale of 1 to 5, I would give this a 3 to a 3 1/2 as a family show – but I cannot stress this is only as a kid’s show.

Do not attempt to take your date to this show unless, you really are only hoping for one date (though there were 3 couples in the cinema without kids, who seemed to enjoy it.)

I asked Connor if he could tell 5 people about the movie how many he would tell (pick a number from 1 to 5 stuff), he said everyone.  So I said “so you would tell 5” and he said “no, I would tell 700!”

Take the kids, it’s easy, makes you smile more than it makes you cringe, and makes the kids laugh.

Brothers and sisters …. sibling rivalry …

My kids are pushing me to where I am considering opening a bottle of wine before going to work in the morning ….

It is the constant fighting and the bitching about nothing that is doing my head in.  One stupid argument at a time.

I can deal with three kids (albeit if only some of the time).

I can deal with one kid crapping in their pants, one kid messing glue and cellotape all over the house and the other kid lying on the couch playing DS when he is in his jammies at 2pm and has not brushed his teeth.

I can deal with all of that.

I cannot deal with them fighting about sh&t!

We can say that because I am in a bit of a depressive episode, everything pisses me off.  Yes we can say that, but kids fighting pisses me off whether I need medication or not.

This morning was a bit of a rush, with the usual morning stuff.

I especially enjoyed the part where I told Georgia more than six times to get dressed – I was in her room sitting on her bed watching her not listen to me.

The only reason she did not get a slap across the back of her head was because it was her birthday. (And because child services regularly reads this blog).  Now even that I take with a sigh, and a pinch of “she will grow up out of it …..maybe”

Eventually I gave up and sat and dressed her myself, but that was fine.

I put breakfast out for Connor and Georgia.

Both kids decide they did not want milk in their cereal and wanted to eat it dry.  No worries, I put the milk in a cup.

I have no problem with them eating their cereal and milk separately – I figure it will get mixed in their tummies.
As long as I do not have to listen to them crunching dry cereal in my ear, then we are all a-ok in my book with what ever method they want to go about taking in their cereal and calcium.  It is fine, really, fine!

I head to have a shower and sort myself out.

I issue firm instructions for them to finish breakfast and to go and brush teeth.

Georgia gets a special instruction not to mess toothpaste on herself.  It is not uncommon for me to have to change her shirt and wash her face, and parts of her hair after a tooth brushing exercise.

I am in the shower and it sounds like two small kids throwing their combined body weight against the door – well, because that is exactly what they were doing.

I get out the shower, open the door, in a rather aggressive and very frustrated manner.

Me still dripping wet, with clumps of conditioner adhered to my congealed locks and scream “WHAT now?  What crap are you two fighting about NOW!”  (my good mother skills have been a bit absent as of late)

I said something of that ilk at any rate.

I had conditioner spilling down my face and dripping into my right eye.  I also did not grab a towel, so both kids were exposed to the full fright of an overweight full-grown woman-who-has-not-seen-sun-in-about-five-years with a recent brazilian wax!

Suffice to say, they will be thinking twice before interrupting me in the shower again (and the university fund has now been flagged for their future therapy fund).

Connor tells me that Georgia spat on his sleeve.

I have seen Georgia spit, that girl gets absolutely no range.  The logical assumption was that his sleeve would have had to be trying to cover her mouth – and she simply dribbled on him – though, granted with gusto.

I scream at both of them.

I warn them that they had better get sorted and go and finish showering – I am effing and blinding under my breath at this point.  Slam bathroom door and nearly slip on my recently waxed arse as I make my way back to the shower (as I have left water puddles all the way through the bathroom….)

I get out the shower for the second time – sort of shampoo free at this point.

I think, you know what ever is in my hair can stay in, really I have lost any dignity I might have possessed anyway. I am so far past caring about my personal appearance right now, it is all a bit alarming.

Isabelle is crying, I fetch her, change her bum, get her a warm milk bottle, lie her down, and then attempt to find clothing to get dressed in for work.

I am trying to get dressed, I know Georgia is in the 15th minute of brushing her teeth – which means that odds are she has not actually got the brush into her mouth at this point.

I hear a scream and shouting.

I sigh.

I look towards the heavens for help and strength, and nothing is forth coming.

I squeeze into my now-too-tight-granny panties.

Georgia comes into the room and is screaming as she has toothpaste across the front of her pink jacket.

I notice the partial remaining lump of toothpaste on her toothbrush which still has not made it into her mouth, and decide to let that issue pass.

Connor is behind her defending himself at a rate of 350 words per minute and at a very loud pitch – which only tells me he has done something very wrong and by speaking loud and fast he hopes he will be able to drown out any sense or the possibility of me arguing back.

I assess the situation.

And the facts are:

Connor has taken his bathrobe belt and has gone into the bathroom where his sister is trying to brush her teeth (or not in this case), has stood and spun the robe belt around – clearly hitting everything in the range of the belt – including his sister, the toothpaste and the toothbrush.

There is toothpaste splattered everywhere – including on his sister and her jacket.

God’s truth – seriously!!!

I know there is the old adage about not being sent more than you can deal with.  Here is an announcement: I have more than I can deal with. Stop sending me trials and tribulations!!!  Really.

I mean where and why does my son think this is a great idea – he is meant to be really bright.  We just saw his report card, he scored well.

Of course I go off like a cyclone! No TV, no DS, no electricity for the day, gone!  Everything.  I might have insinuated he will sleep in the kennel outside as well, but don’t quote me on that one.

I get in the car and I ask Connor if there was another room in the house that he could have gone to stand and swing his bathrobe cord around – because clearly he had an itch that had to be attended to, and who am I to stand in the way of a young boy who is dabbling in experiments with his grey bath robe?

He said sure, but he did not realize he would hit Georgia.

Really – in a bathroom, swinging a cord that is probably about 1 metre long off the end of your outstretched arm – you did not imagine this would hit your sister?

No, he says.

I say really? (dripping in sarcasm)

He goes, no really!

I challenge him.

Tonight we go into the bathroom and I swing the cord around, I will bend my arm, to counter the size difference between him and I. He can stand by the basin, and if I hit him with the cord, he loses a DS/Television day each time I make contact.  We can keep it up for 5 minutes and see how it fares.

Anyway then I went on a full-fledged saliva-spurting non-sensical mother-driving-wildly-whilst-gesticulating rant and lament about this constant fighting between them.

I really hoped I hit it home this morning, because I am really over did it a bit.

I indicated that soon I was going to start implementing my “all for one” theory of punishment.

If one person misbehaves and starts antagonizing the other and I walk into the scene and there is “he did this …” “she did that…. “ going on, then they both get punished as I am officially over refereeing this lot.

Dear Villlage Chief

I know it takes a village to raise a child, but for fk sake can someone from the village come over from 06h00 – 08h00 and then from 16h00 – 19h30 and show me how it is done?

Yours in hope

Reluctant Mom

The bitch is back ….granted she never actually left …

On Tuesday morning I made a full confession to My Good Egg that I was struggling with what can only be politely described as a “bout of depression” of the EPIC PROPORTION.

I feel a lot like one of those fine bone china tea cups that are being rocked on the saucer, with all the hot tea spilling out.  At any moment the tea-cup is going to fall over, spill out over of the edge of the saucer and break into a million little pieces.

<side bar: I am the tea-cup in this analogy.>

I was very anxious and stressed around the girl’s birthday party.  I totally lost my mind about picking out paper plates and serviettes. EVEN at the time, I knew this was not important in the bigger picture.

Well my rational mind knew that, but where the rest of my mind lives, rational is too scared to go.

I was freaking out – and when Kennith bought the “fairy” ones and I wanted the “princess” ones I still ran around to two more stores (after the easy 6 I had been to) seeing if I could still find princess ones.

When I start making these kind of heavy decisions about throw-away tableware, then you know it is time for Valium and a padded room.

I have been aware of it for some time, and then I thought, okay, well maybe you are just in a bad mood.  This, if I must be truthful, is a bit more than just a bad mood.

I am in the downward slide down the rabbit hole of a depressiive episode.  I am desperately grabbing at dirt as I slide down in my little blue dress with the big white bow on the back.

I spoke to My Good Egg this morning as I was sure that the only option was to get a script of Zoloft or something similar.  I seldom discuss “my ebbs’ with Kennith as he knows when they are occurring and gives me the necessary space to move through them, and I usualy move through them.

But I am not moving through this one.  And I feel like I am being swallowed alive.  I am not coping.  I cannot cope.

I had a good cry – actually it was not a good cry,it was a snot sob which I dripped on to Kennith’s work shirt.

I have a cache of (totally misguided and inappropriate) anger, rage and spite bubbling under the surface  – no idea where it comes from.  It is not directed at anyone or anything, and spares no one.  I mean really, what the hell have I got to be angry about??

I feel persecuted – “they” are watching me and “they” are out to get me. I have absolutely no idea who “they” are.  But I feel aggressive if someone starts asking me for something. (My job requires people to ask me for things all day, you can imagine how that is going.)

I have learnt to manage my depressive episodes better as the years have gone by (this however is not a good example of that statement).

The (not so) funny thing about depression ebbs is when I am in them, I believe in my heart of hearts that they will never end.

I am frazzled, I am further down than I have been in what seems like an age, and I am not coping.

I am actually spinning out of control.

We are going away for the long (it’s only a long weekend if you take Friday off work) weekend to the most divine place – I call it my “waiting to exhale” place.

When we get there, I sit and look out over the hills and hear the cows going “mooooo” and the wine in my glass catches the light over the valley.  I let out a breath that I feel I have been holding for what feels like forever.

The part that stresses me, is in my present “state,” I am bound to do or say something to alienate someone if not everyone this weekend.

It is not “if” it will occur, it is merely a case of “when” it occurs.

With that in mind I decided that the best course of action, was to just tell our friends so that they could prepare (and allow them the opportunity to arm) themselves for the weekend:

Morning Folks!!

I am in the throes of a full scale  depressive episode – of what  can only be described of EPIC PROPORTIONS.

This particular bout is characterized by my inability to follow a conversation, my overriding urge to start talking about the most awkward things possible, my inability to take social cues, an urge to alienate people by offending them, and the fact that my brain is not able to process what you say versus what I hear, and a few other
delicious issues ……ah the fun I am having.

No, this is not an opening line to a joke, this is unfortunately where I am right now.

It has been going on for several weeks, but this week is total “wheels fkn falling off stuff” so this email is a warning/word of caution that odds are I will try to find something to say or do this weekend that is bound to piss you off/alienate you/wonder if you can find a spade to kill me with/look at me and wonder how long you will need to count before you just slap me ….. you know that sort of stuff.

There is a good chance I might incite all these feelings in you simultaneously, and odds are I might have already.

I am seriously freaking out, and Kennith and I have discussed possible ‘action strategies’ to get me through my present ‘spell’ – I suggested Zoloft, lots of wine and a cliff, he suggested a few other options.

We are trying his options in the short-term, however I reserve the right to use mine.

So, please try not to be (permanently) offended by my actions/what falls out of my mouth this weekend/Tourette’s Syndrome – I am trying my best to keep it under control, but it is rather epic and a bit out of hand right now, so just warning you that
what I say or do right now (no matter how bizarre it might seem, and I can
always promise you bizarre) is not a personal attack on you in any way, and I
am a total twat, and and and …….

I am also not suggesting that this is a “free get out of jail card” for me, as I also need to take responsibility for my actions/what I say, but if you can please just keep this in mind while you watch me having a total senseless rant, usually in the kitchen, in my blue grubby bathrobe, with a wine glass in my right hand and a child on my left hip
……..

Okay, so when you pack your groceries, please pack some Valium (for you) and maybe some forgiveness fairy dust for me.

Xxx

PS: I am drafting letters of apology now that I will just send off on Monday morning, so I will leave them in my draft tray now.

The red beret incident ….. picture story

Okay, now that I have recovered from the Huisgenoot Mooi Shoot (and I still have not actually seen the magazine yet) – though my friends have promised to bring along a magazine for this weekend and further ridicule me, I thought I would put up these photos that I took of the shoot day.

Me at the Hairdresser at the One and Only – seriously I could live like this ….I permitted quite a lot of hair to be cut off, I was a bit traumatised afterwards.

Neville treated me to a Hydra Mist experience, which other than looking like an Alien Mother Ship landed on my head was divine – something about pores in your hair shaft and moisture …..

Poor Neville having to brush the knots out ….. he was probably rethinking his career choice right about then.

The divinely talented Neville – Hair Guru at the One and Only Hotel, Cape Town

Makeup artist applying the first layer …. of many many layers … I don’t really wear makeup so it was all a bit shocking ..

Er, that is a lot of makeup ….clearly they knew I would be coming along …..

Stylist Kim sorting out the clothes … for the record we all look slightly wrecked as we were at studio before 7am ….

I actually quite liked this outfit, I was not loving the beret at all – I LOVED THE SHOES, not sure the poncho/wrap was working, but it felt nice on.

The photographer kept asking me to stand on one leg – then I fell over- then he asked me to do it again — have no idea where this was going.

Incredible how I followed instruction from people I do not know ….. total Jedi Mind Tricks that day.

Photographer guy wondering exactly how much time he should set aside for Photoshop on this lot …

Another look they were trying – no I would not under normal conditions stand with bright red lipstick and a compact in a room – but they felt this might be a good idea (notice how big and how much lips I have – makeup artists do not have to colour within the lines ….)

I really liked this look and was hoping they would use the photos from this series…but sadly not.

A ton of makeup being applied …..

They were doing some portraits at the end, which they did not use …..I quite liked the dress, actually I really liked the dress.

And, as they say, that’s all folks!!

My 15 minutes (or seconds in this case) of fame, over.

I wore a beret …. because they made me …..

So I have been dreading this moment for some time.

<I figured as I had posted images of me puking at my hen party last year, I might as well out myself on this before someone else does>

The experience was really a lot of fun – but I hate being in front of a camera (anyone who has attempted to aim a camera at me will know this), and anyone who sees the result might agree that I look relatively uncomfortable.

About two months ago a few Mommy Bloggers were approached with the aim to be styled by a Style Blogger, and to have hair and makeup done and photographed for Huisgenoot Mooi Magazine.

I was keen on everything, except the being photographed part.

But it appeared that issue was a bit of a deal breaker, so I thought “no one will see it, surely….”

I had my hair coloured and cut by the brilliant Nigel from the Hairdresser & Spa at the One and Only, Cape Town.

Neville gave me the best hair cut I have ever had, and he did a great job colouring my hair – he gave me a hair treatment that will make me think fondly of him for many years to come.

The next day I met Kim Gray (who won Style Blogger 2010) and the merry band of directors/makeup and camera people at the You Studio in Cape Town.

Kim had selected some outfits and we then tried to put my large white body in to them.

I will confess she chose some really lovely pieces, that I probably would not have chosen myself.  I was also nowhere near a mirror so had to take her guidance in terms of what looked good.

I had makeup done and hair was fine from the day before.

At that point I was asked to stand around in a studio and smile or jump or leap – and then it just got very awkward for me.

Everyone had their job, and my job was to do what ever they said … and not try to change anything, or suggest not to wear the beret for instance.

I really hate being in front of the camera and I think every cell in my body was screaming “get me the hell out of here!”

But I stayed and played along – it was actually a lot of fun and quite an experience.

I showed Kennith these pictures and the first thing he said is:”What the hell is on your head?” and then he burst out laughing ….. sigh ……. so I predict the next few days are going to be rather painful for me.

I have taken the images from Kim’s pages, as I have not seen the magazine myself.

Measuring Time … one school drop off and collect at a time ….

There is no pleasure worth forgoing just for an extra three years in the geriatric ward. ~John Mortimer

Last night I sat and worked out a time line focused on when the kids would be in what grade.  I was interested in the  year they would finish at a school to go to another – you know grade versus year stuff.

I was aiming to establish when there might ever be a year where I would be driving to one school with kids, or whether I would permanently be a mom-in-transit across several schools.

I got really excited as I thought 2015 was my year, but then I realized I had made a calculation error, and 2015 was not going to be my year.

I will always be going to a minimum of two schools to drop off and collect kids.  Three if we decide to send Connor and Georgia to single-sex high schools.

Some years I can look forward to:

2016 – Isabelle will start Grade 1 and it is the same year that Connor starts high school.  I will be 44 years old with a daughter in Grade 1 as I face parents entering the school with their first-born.  The bulk of them will probably be in the 25 – 32 year age range.  These parents are going to be all shiny eyed and bushy-tailed. Eager little beavers.  I on the other hand will be a complete jaded wreck!  That should do wonders for my self-confidence and ability to offend parents at get togethers.

2019 – The years I will start driving to three schools; two kids in separate high school and one in primary school.

2020 – Connor will finish high school.  I will have Georgia in a different high school.  Isabelle will still be in
Primary School.  That will be a bumper year for driving, but it will mean Connor will be getting ready for University/Fishing College.

2023 – The girls will both be in high school, so this might be the year where I am driving to one school assuming they are at the same school.

2024 – Connor will be in his final year of University (I am allowing for 4 years). Georgia will be starting University/Beauty/Art School and Isabelle will be in Grade 9.  So in theory, I could be dropping one child off at one school (I figure university = get there your damn self)

2028 – Isabelle will start university. Connor will be 4  years into paying back his University loan. Georgia will be in her first year of paying back her university loan and I will be 56 years old!  This will be the first year that I will not be driving a child to a school and fetching them again.  This is working on the premise that no one fails, and life goes to “plan.”

14 years – that is how long I will be driving to and from the EXACT SAME Primary School that my kids are at now.  Connor started there in 2009 and Isabelle will finish there in 2022.  I have been doing it for three years already and I am already bored out of my tree.

I will be 59 with a child in final year university.

Right there, that alone is an argument in favour of teenage pregnancies (as you are a younger parent when you r kids are big, incase that statement did not make sense on first read).

My friend Warren, kindly did an age progression image for me, so here is what I will look like when I attend Isabelle’s Graduation from University (I did ask him to make me look 60, I think he was aiming for 70 or 75….).

I really hope they have a Zimmer frame facilities and an open bar!

So, how is your time line looking?

Do you know where your street fire hydrant is?

No this is not a pun or a play on words.

This is an actual question.

Let’s call this post a Public Service Announcement.

A mom at my daughter’s birthday party on Saturday had said that they are living in a guest house as their home had burnt down about three weeks ago.

After I got over the ‘what?’ part of the conversation – and she brought me a glass of wine to calm my nerves and explained that they had experienced a fire and their home was gutted. 

They had to live in a guest house until ….. well until …… when ever. 

The part that impressed me, was that she was the first to RSVP, she arrived timeously for the girl’s party and well she looked quite relaxed (more so when she heard there was wine on offer, and no tea and coffee).  I am not sure I would be that put together if my house had recently burnt down.

The story goes that she woke up at about 6:30 got her daughter dressed for school, and was heading up to the kitchen for breakfast/coffee, as you do.

Her house is on three levels with kitchen/main living area being on the first level. 

She said she got up to the top-level and then saw flames, arrived at the kitchen to find a column of flames on its way up and licking the ceiling.

She called the fire brigade and then hustled to get everyone out of the house.

It seems to the source was their Panasonic Microwave, which had shorted – it was turned off at the time and not in use.  Does that freak you out and make you want to unplug your own about now?  Yes, me too. 

During the conversation she kept referring to it as her “Panic Sonic” Microwave, and I thought that was either a Freudian slip or the wine talking, so from now on I am re-naming Panasonic to Panic Sonic.

Fire brigade arrived in their shiny red truck, with their very able firemen and their hoses and big … boots. 

That is really where the problem began, or should I say where she acquired an additional problem – considering her immediate problem was a huge raging fire in her kitchen.

The sign in her street indicating the location of the fire hydrant, did not have a fire hydrant, and then the game of ‘find the fire hydrant’ began.

45 minutes later was when they managed to start getting water onto the house, as that is how long it took them (and how ever wanted to join) and play find-the-frkn-fire-hydrant-while-my-house-burns-down.

The house was gutted.  No one was harmed and no animals were injured. 

However some vital things could have been saved if they had known where the fire hydrant was in the street so that they could direct the fire brigade.

So, today go out and walk up your road/street/complex and look for your fire hydrant.  Not just for the sign that says ‘fire hydrant’ but for the ACTUAL fire hydrant.

I am thinking of al the arbitrary things you should know, this is possibly one of those that will make you the most popular neighbour in the street, and maybe give you more time to rescue your wine collection if the fire is at your home.

Another disturbing story I read relating to this was this story where the fire brigade also arrived and could not use the fire hydrant at this particular home, as it was damaged and they could not clamp their hose thingy-magigee to the fire hydrant.  So house could not be saved …. now that must really be one of those times where you wonder how the universe has conspired against you.

730 days old today ……and actually so is this blog …. sort of ….

Today is Isabelle’s birthday.

She turns two.

The reality is she does not really give a hoot and appears happy to drink her bottle, and throw a tantrum until someone gave her a Cheese Curl for breakfast.

That girl really loves Cheese Curls.

What she does not love is talking.  Two years old and I still do not have a Mommy.  We have a “uck” a “cat” a “og” and “ooce (like juice)” and “aaarrr” which pretty much covers anything that is not yuck, cat, dog or juice.

Tomorrow we are doing a combined party for the girls.  I think Isabelle would be as interested if we went to the spur and I put a sparkler on top of a Krusty the Clown ice cream cup.

So the party is what I want, and has nothing to do with what she wants/needs/cares about (but admittedly aren’t most kid’s parties about the parents, especially the mom?)

I know birthdays should be all about the child and the presents and being thankful for them.

However, for me it is a day to reflect on how fast two years have passed and how much I have changed in the last two years (and yes how much Isabelle has changed, and has moved from teeny baby to little girl status).

Another thing to consider is if it was not for Isabelle, this blog probably would not have existed.

Isabelle being born = Reluctant Mom being born.

I was so sure with her that it would all be easy and I would get it all so right.  I was not going to be the perfect mother, but damn, I was going to be the organized and assured mother, and this time I was going to get it right.

Maybe not all of the time, but definitely the bulk of the time.

What happened instead is that I realized that I really did not have it together.

I was struggling because I thought it would be so much easier, because I had done it twice already, and it was so damn hard, pretty much all of the time.

I was so sure I would take to it like a duck to water.  Because I wanted this baby so damn much, and I was so excited about having her.  I had planned this, I was mature, I knew how this worked, and again, I had a plan!

I had visions of being a stay at home mom, instead I started counting how soon I could go back to work (I did actually contact my company and begged/pleaded/indicated I would like to come back early if they wanted me ….)

What happened instead was a plunge into another wave of depression.  I thought that one of us was going to die, or I was going to do her serious bodily harm. I was sinking into the abyss.

I did eventually bob to the top of the cesspool, primarily because I found/discovered/stumbled on blogging.

I know it is not cool to get all-emotional-on-your-arse.  It is so cliché to say “blogging is cheaper than therapy”, but damn, blogging was my saving grace (and still is, often).

I had done therapy, so I know it worked, and at my lowest moment I went to my first appointment with a new psychiatrist, and he wrote me a shiny new script of Zoloft, and he suggested I come back and see him …. soon.

Then I decided to try this malarkey called “blogging.”‘

I had never read a blog, I had clearly not blogged, but I thought it might help to write stuff down – and I type quicker than I write.

I adored and still adore Isabelle with an all consuming passion.

She however made me realize that every pregnancy is different.  Every birth experience is different and every child is different.  Far be it from me to offer advise to someone who is struggling based on my “wealth”  of experience, because my wealth helped me not one bit.

It felt like nothing I had experienced had prepared me for what I was going through.  I have tried with this blog, never to come across as “having all the answers” and my aim was always to reveal how faulted I was.

Motherhood for me was pretty lonely, especially that first year – funny how you feel alone even in a room full of people.  I always felt people spoke about their babies and who eats what, but no one really speaks about how they struggle and how they cry in the bathroom, and how much they want to run away.

I made huge mistakes, like Mommy 101 mistakes.  I struggled and I cried, and I just was not getting it right.

It was nothing like I thought it was going to be.  And I was disappointed that I was not a better mother, the third time around.

It does not get easier, no matter how many times you take a run at it. (in my opinion)

Isabelole taught me a measure of humility.  She taught me that we all do what works for us at the end of the day, no matter how bizarre it appears to the rest of mommydom.

However  my having a Good Egg to step in and save me when I was totally fking it up, does help.  It really does, and it continues to.

Happy Birthday Isa-Bubbles …

Isabelle : About Two Seconds Old

Isabelle :  Two Weeks Old

Isabelle : Four Months Old

Isabelle : Seven Months Old

Isabelle : Twelve Months Old

Isabelle : Thirteen Months Old

Isabelle : Fourteen Months Old

Isabelle : Eighteen Months Old

Isabelle : Twenty Three Months Old

Bet you did not see this one coming …..

I am not quite sure how to explain this phenomena without posting the issue in the words of the mother who was effected/traumatized/left stunned:-

I feel so betrayed because I trusted my nanny with my kids, little boy (2.7yrs) and
little girl (7months).

Last week I found her breast-feeding my little girl and I still feel
traumatized by the thought that she might have infected my little girl with HIV.

Of course I took little girl for HIV testing the same day and gave my nanny an hour to get out of my house, but I feel like I will never be able to trust another nanny with
my kids again.

I don’t even trust crèche teachers at this stage.  But what can I do
because I have to work and my job has a lot of travelling involved.

I feel so stressed and depressed right now. Please give me any advise on  what  I can do from this point.

Instinctively you will want to go back and re-read it as, if your brain is in any way programmed like mine, is going “What the Fuck!”

You might even say it several times over and then think “what!?”

It actually does not get any easier to absorb no matter how many times you try and take it in.

I could not  wrap my head around this.  Where in any women’s mind would it be okay to “breastfeed” another women’s child?  How ignorant must you be?  How totally removed from …. I don’t know ….. everything must you be to go “this is a super idea.”

The mom in question had stopped breast-feeding her daughter when her little girl  was 4 months old.  But as the little girl is now 7 months old and took the breast, the thinking unfortunately is too frightening to begin to imagine.

When I picked myself up off the floor from the rather dazed state I was in after absorbing this – it appears that this phenomena is not as “wildly” uncommon as my “suburban mind” is assuming.

Nope, if someone is looking after your baby and baby is upset and nothing is working, then said person often things “well, I got milk, and baby needs to be soothed, so let’s pop my nipple into baby’s mouth.”

Two other moms said they had heard of this occurring before and though they were horrified that it occured they were not as shocked as I was, as it “happens”.

Officially a total WHAT THE FUCK MOMENT?!!!

My point here (and I think there could be so many things we could say on this but I am going to leave it to this one) is if you left me for 50 years interviewing and hiring nannies to assist moms with newborns or young babies, and I would NEVER have thought to say “oh, my baby is being breastfed, I just want you to know in no uncertain terms that if you put your nipple anywhere near my child I will kill you – and not quickly.  I will kill you slowly and painfully and bury your body so no one will ever find you!  Okay, so we clear on that?  Anything else you need to know about the position?”

Not an issue that I would have covered in any interview, ever – no matter how many times I had interviewed or reference checked someone.

Ever.

But this it appears might be one I will suggest you add to your list if you are interviewing someone who has recently had a baby — you know, just because she could slip and her nipple could land in your newborn’s mouth.

Freaking unbelievable.  (or am I the only one who has just had the bejesus scared into them?)

Winner winner chicken dinner …..

I get excited when I find a half full bottle of wine in the fridge, so I get pretty excited about a lot of things.

Yasmin – bless her cotton socks – gave me some props on her Blog and awarded me (even in the face of heavy and far more deserving competition) two fabulous awards..

A “Lovely Blog Award” and the nearly as lovely “The Versatile Blog Award”.

I had a very long acceptance speech planned, but I was reminded that there will be no awards dinner nor free wine on offer with these awards.

Granted I was a bit disappointed, but I bought myself some wine, because a girl needs wine.

On that subject.  Is it wrong to buy bottles of wine at Pick ‘n Pay and put it into your 5-year-old daughter’s “kids trolley” and her wheel it around the store for you?  I decided it was totally appropriate….but I must confess that the amount of tsk-tsk’s I was getting, did indicate a different public opinion leaning in the other directions, but moving along.

That being said, I bought my own wine, ate a square of fudge made by my co-worker and that really is about as good as an “awards dinner” can get, I think.

I have also been informed that the “rules for acceptance” are:

1. Choose five (or more) other people who deserve this award and pass it on.
2. Tell 7 facts about yourself.
3. Let the people you gave the award to know.
4. Thank the person who gave you the award.

First:  Choose five (or more) other people who deserve this award and pass it on.

I assume this needs to be limited to blogs.

I must confess that I make the 101 Blog Etiquette error and that is that I do not follow blogs daily.

What I do is have a weekly binge fest.  I pop along at some point, maybe 2am when I cannot sleep, or when I am sitting in a room with lots of porcelain and find myself alone, too “other wise detained” to have a book, and I open my phone and read up about what I have missed.

It is difficult to narrow it down to “who deserve this award” so I am going to opt for “who jumped into your head immediately” and go with that.

I think these things are always nice to introduce people to other blogs and that is never a bad thing.

So my 5 blogs that I want to introduce you to (in no particular order and also apologising to the 55 I was not able to add to this list – I do however have a blog roll on my page and I also follow those blogs rather religiously and often in awe) are:

Raising Men – the funniest and one of the most talented all around chicks I have come across.  I heart her a great deal.

Fear of Missing Shit – I really enjoy this blog, but this blogger needs a kick up the rectum and to be told in a firm voice to get off the couch and blog more, because she is so damn good at it and is so funny she makes me snort.

Being an Adult Child of an Alcoholic or Two – profound blog, and such a great writer, with so much real life experience oozing through this blog.  She offers so much in the way of life lessons and really shows you that you can heal yourself, one blood soaked step at a time.

Whiskey in My Sippy Cup – my find of the week.  Hysterically funny blog and I do love people who cuss.  In her About page she writes “She grew poor, white trash in a part of the country where the only way you could be poor is if you were also black, so she never really liked white people all that much and can braid like a motherfucker.”  I might start stalking her – I will try to poke her on Facebook and see how that goes.

Dooce – I forgot how good Dooce was, and then Jana reminded me.  I saw this post – and now I am a rampant fan.  Finding a great blog you used to follow is like finding money in your pants that you threw in the wash – it is money, but money that makes you really really happy – like the prodigal son.

Secondly:  Tell 7 facts about yourself.

To quote Finn from Great Expectations:  I’m not going to tell the story the way it happened. I’m going to tell it the way I remember it.

Fact 1 : I always count people’s toes – always.  I am obsessed with finding a person with 6 toes on their one foot.

Fact 2 : I have three birth marks, one large and dark one on my side, a light one on my right shoulder and a light one on my right knee.   My side birth mark made me feel very embarrassed growing up, and I never wore anything that would reveal it. Now I do not realise it is there, until my youngest attempts to wash it off in the bath.  She has been washing the same spot for ages.

Fact 3 : I smell things.  I smell clothes I want to buy and pretty much anything.  When I pick something up as part of my evaluating process I smell things.  In stores I try to look like I am putting the fabric up against my cheek to feel it, but the reality is that I am smelling it.  I do this with things that technically do not have a smell i.e. crockery.

Fact 4 : I love beetroot, but cannot eat my food if beetroot has touched it.  The result is that I never bought it.  I now do on occasion and eat it on a side plate with my food.  I do not like my food touching my other food. I like to eat my food separately, and this is partly why I am not a stew fan!

Fact 5 : I chew gum like a smoker would smoke a cigarette.  I keep a pack in my bag, and when I feel stressed, I take out a gum square, chew chew chew, then I feel less stressed and throw the gum away.  Unfortunately chewing gum heightens my sense of anxiety, so it is a bit of a lose-lose situation.

Fact 6 :   I can’t say the word “reality: without thinking of Mitchell’s Plain schoolteacher and Big Brother housemate Janine Orderson (fast memory rewind: first SA big brother, appalling primary school teacher who in her “talent” act showed how to perform a blow job on a cucumber ….total TV Fail Moment.)  She used to pronounce the word “reeeee-a-lit -tea” in such a particular way, that I always mentally mimic her when I have to use the word.  I do think of her regularly and see she is on Facebook if you are keen to hook up with her.

Face 7 : I spell “their” and “friend” incorrectly all the time without the aid of spell check.  I can spell a myriad of words but for some reason “their” and “friend” I get wrong nearly every time.

Fact 8 : Bonus fact – for you who have endured this post. I was photographed to appear in the Huisgenoot Mooi Magazine due for publication shortly (it went to print on Friday.) I am mortified and embarrassed as I was jumping around the studio doing things that I would normally not do without the aid of copious amounts of alcohol, and a departure of good sense. (Departure of good sense was present, alcohol was sadly not).

3. Let the people you gave the award to know.

Tick, done.

 4. Thank the person who gave you the award.

Tick, done

<note the rules did not say I could not amend/improve/update the look of the ‘award badge’ so I have taken the liberty of doing this – if however anyone wants to keep the “original” they are available to be grabbed on Yasmin’s Blog ,  or you can grab the ones here, or you can email me and I will send you better quality jpegs to use… totally your call>

RSVP’ing … what the fk is up with that?

I am trying to plan a birthday party for Georgia and Isabelle.

Georgia turns 6 on the 20 June and Isabelle turns 2 on the 10 June, so this year I thought it might be easier (for me) to just lump their parties together on the same day and we will have a party on the 11 June.

I am not going to be able to get away with this for very long, so I plan to take the gap whilst I can and it might be nice for the girls to share a birthday together, and I have got them skirts that match.  So as naff as that is, that is what is going to be happening here.

Parties are very stressful endeavours for me.

Planning them, attending them, just about everything party = stress for me.

(everything party = total oblivious Kennith)

I know this should be a happy time.  I should be basking in the joy and celebration of my daughters.  Planning a party (whether in my home or at a party venue is very stressful and make me anxious) gets a bit overwhelming for me.

Why?  Because it does become all about me at a certain point.

I want it to be a great party for my kids. I want in those two hours them to feel like the most important people in the entire universe.  I want them to remember the party and remember it fondly as a day where they were the most important thing in the world.

Kennith says I am throwing the party for the parties I did not have as a child.

He is not totally incorrect.

This party is like all the other parties I have thrown for my kids.

I am stressed, and anxious about the party. I worry that no one will come.  I worry that my kids will
not feel loved and have a good time.  I worry that I will be more socially awkward than I already am.

I worry there will not be enough food.  I worry there will be too much food.

But today I am pissed off that parents cannot follow a FUCKING RSVP.

I am starting to think/reason that maybe people (parents) do not understand what an RSVP is.

In my map of the world RSVP means – please tell me if you are coming or not, so that I can plan to make  enough food, buy enough wine, make sufficient party packs if you are coming.

If you cannot make it, no worries, just let me know, as then I do not have to wonder if you are coming and then start catering if you might come.  It really would save me about 3 hours and probably a few hundred rand if you did RSVP.  Use the cell number or the email, sms or email, you do not actually even have to talk to me,
I am fine with that.  Totally fine.   Just do not leave me hanging in this middle-earth of not knowing what you are doing.

But parents don’t RSVP.  Granted people don’t RSVP.

But why?

Is the time to write a “Yes, love to be there, thanks” or a “No, can’t make it, thanks” message either via sms or email just too straining on their time?

Is it because they are so inundated with invitations to so many events that they hand them to their personal secretary and she has overlooked this one.

Is it because they are unsure of whether they wish to come or not, and want to sort of leave it open in case something better comes along?

Is it because they really do not like me or my child and by not RSVP’ing they know that this will annoy me no end and also be a personal snub on my child?

Well, what is it then?

I am gob smacked as to what is wrong with people.

Why must I have to go back to each person and say “so are you coming?” so I can be sure whether to pack a party pack or not.

<I have had instances in the past where kids arrive to a party and the parents have not RSVP’d so I am left without a party pack for said child.  As a rule I pack 5 extra party packs now without names on them.  How bizarre is it that I adjust my behaviour because I expect parents to be self-absorbed-I-don’t-care-about-other-people-and-their arrangements people!>

<Sidebar:  I have had the same thing for big people parties, baby showers, weddings, so I am thinking that is not anything person against my child, though right now I do feel like it is a personal snub.>

If you get an invite, just respond say yes, say no – it really is pretty simply stuff. Takes no more than 5 second, 12 if you are stupid and can’t work an QWERTY keyboard.

Surely you get an invite, check your diary, right there you know.

If there is a conflict and you are unsure if you can make it then email the person ‘Would love to join you on the 11 of June, might have to have an anal tumour removed, but specialist doctor is checking avialability.  Fingers crossed.  Will let you know if it is a go on the anal tumour on the 9 June, if not, then I am definitely there.  Would much rather have some cake and jump on the jumping castle than the anal tumour removed.  LOL”

You get the idea.  What is the FUCKING big deal?

Do it within 48 hours of getting the invite, then you know they know and everyone can get on with their lives.

There are family and friends coming, but I wanted to include some friends from Georgia’s class and school who she asked to invite.

I sent out more than 20 invites to kids at Georgia’s school last week Friday and asked them to RSVP by the 6 June – I have heard from 2.

But that being said I had worked out in my head that of the 20 invites, I would get 10 RSVP’s and of the 10 only 5 would be able to come, I was fine with that as a final figure.

What has annoyed me is that even with my very practical mental calculation, and rather (very) pessimistic view on how crap people are, the RSVP rate is still lower than I had pitched it.

Really if you perform lower than my expectations, then you must suck!!

<I have some family members who I have sent invites to who have not RSVP’d either.  I am actually at the point where I want to go and sh*t on their doors steps. I am not sure of what point that would prove, but I am actually out of ideas.  My guess is if someone shat on your doorstep for not RSVP’ing, my guess, is you would be the best darn RSVP’er from that day going forward.  So it might work.>

When mommies and daddies fight ……..

Last week Kennith and I had a humdinger fight.

EPIC. FIGHT.

We do not have huge fights often.    We disagree about stuff and then I call him names under my breath, but who doesn’t… I mean honestly?

I am not suggesting we skip around saying “love you noodle” and then telling everyone on Facebook how fabulous we are.

On a sidebar note, why do people feel they must tell everyone on Facebook how much they love their husband or wife?

Seriously, get off Facebook, and tell them yourself.

It is a about as sad as those people who phone in to a radio show to tell the disk jockey how much they love their girlfriend/boyfriend/wife/husband/person they are shagging/person they hope to shag, when the person is sitting behind them and you can hear them squealing with delight in the background.

I really do not give a shit how much you love your significant other, you go tell them.  How desperate are you to give the impression you have the perfect relationship when you need to announce it to Facebook …. constantly.

Any the way, I digress…. a tad.

Back to my story – I have been trying really hard of late to address an issue with Kennith instead of using my passive-agreesive-behaviour.

I do love a bit of PAB as much as the next gal.

I have found that standing with a baby on your hip, a glass of wine in your other hand and sighing in a very aggressive manner while your husband plays computer games during the evening suicide hour is not an effective manner for him to realize that he needs to put off the game and come and help with the kids/dinner/bath routine.

The only thing that it achieves is that you start looking too trailer park for your own good.  Husbands behaviour does not change.

So my story really starts here – my AF (periods for the uninformed) was a bit late, six days in actual fact.

Like most (all) girls if your AF is late you start wondering if you might be pregnant.

By 2pm of said day you start thinking you might be.

By 7pm of said day you are starting to suspect you are.

By 9am of the day that follows the day-when-AF-was-due you are really starting to think you are… for sure.

By 2pm of the day that follows the day-when-AF-was-due you are really sure you are.

By 9pm of the day that follows the day-when-AF-was-due you start to fkn panic because you know you are, but willing to wait for the next morning, as no doubt all will be right with the world.

By 9am of the day following the day that follows the day-when-AF-was-due you know you are.

By 2pm of the day following the day that follows the day-when-AF-was-due you have thought of a short list of names, have already mentally shopped for a pair of maternity denims, have started to feel pregnancy
symptoms that include sore boobs, swelling tummy, and irritability.

(I permanently exhibit 2 of the 3 symptoms all of the time, so this only feeds my slightly wild imagination.)

I was about 6 days late, and you can imagine how my brain had run away with me at that point.

If not, then let me enlighten you.

It was a boy, I had named him, already worked out where he would sleep, and how work was going to deal with my pregnancy.

I also had already mentally worked out how I was going to tell Kennith, and the total frkn explosion that was going to be and how he would suggest I viist a Marie Stopes Clinic, and I would cry and fall on the floor all prostrate and stuff.

Listen, when I am allowed to run about in my head, people get hurt.

I had popped along for a POAS (pee on a stick test) and it was negative and then my AF started, so I was relieved that I was not pregnant, which I also found odd as I do want to be pregnant (but we leave that for another post.)

I am regaling this story, because granted it has been a very stressful 6 days for me, to Kennith who looks decidedly green while I am telling him the story.  I am gabbing on and on and ……

The problem is that the story escalated to a full on argument that included, but was not limited to:

  • You leave wet towels on the bed.
  • No, you leave wet towels on the bed.
  • You never do anything with the kids.
  • Why can you not stop bossing me around.
  • I can’t go to the toilet in peace while you appear to be able to watch an entire rugby game on a Saturday afternoon, how does that work?
  • I will never change so stop trying to make me change.
  • Who do you think is the maid if the maid is not here and you continue to leave your shit all over the show.
  • You are a douche bag (okay maybe I just thought that).
  • You are a selfish bitch (I am sure that one was said out loud).
  • Fuck you.
  • No fuck you.

Any the way …. it got quite brutal and I must be honest I am not sure what we were fighting about exactly, but the wet towel seemed to be the fuel for the fire.

I actually learnt nothing from that fight, other than …..no, actually I learnt nothing from that fight, and I am still unsure what the point was.

I did learn that fighting with a woman whose period has just started is probably not the best course of action.

The thing with me is that after a fight, I am unable to just forgive and move on.  Resentment and anger lives
with me way after a fight has ended.  I am not really a bury the hatchet kind of girl.

I was so angry with Kennith – not about anything in particular, the fact that he was breathing was sort of making me angry.

I did calm down and I did sort of just “let it go” – but I am glad we do not have those arguments often, because they are harrowing.   I am not sure how people function in relationships where they argue all the damn time.

The next day Connor give me this little note …. shame poor lamb chop ….

The Tooth Fairy strikes ……

Georgia has been sporting a wobbly tooth for some time.

I can’t stand wobbly teeth, they make me throw up a little when I see them.  I have the same reaction when I see stitches being put in, stitches being taken out, or have to listen to Patricia Lewis.

I just want teeth in or teeth out.  I can’t stand the stage where kids wiggle their loose teetth with their tongue.. It is the equivalent of biting on wool for me.

See how that makes you feel – that is exactly how I feel when I see a loose tooth.

Georgia shows us the wiggly tooth last night and Kennith says: “Let me pull it out with a pliers!”

And she goes: “Okay daddy … ” and then squeals in delight.

I start cringing and hiding behind the oven – not sure why the oven, and why I was hiding, but there I was.

True as nuts Kennith gets the pliers, which was actually his Leatherman Tool (I am not doing puns about his male member, it really was one of those all-purpose tool things, that you keep in a leather pouch, on your belt …… really no puns here) and he then pulls Georgia’s tooth out.

She runs through to the kitchen (where I am still hiding) looking like she might live on the Cape Flats and she is squealing in delight – not pain, delight!

I bought her a “tooth fairy” pillow nearly three years ago, and she dug it out, and deposited her tooth in it and was ready to go to bed.

<so the tooth fairy could come earlier you see>

At that moment I realised that besides having to quickly determine what the going rate was for a milk tooth (which we decided was R25.00), Georgia was on the road heading in the opposite direction of being a baby.

Soon we would be standing in the bra aisle at Woolworths, or in the tampon and sanitary towel aisle at Pick ‘n Pay.

It has all started with her one milk-tooth popping out of mouth to make room for her first adult tooth.

It has officially started ….

It makes me smile with a bit of warmth.  It makes me sniff back a tear because the clichés are true – it does all pass so quickly.

I also got a bit scared, as she is not going to be that little gawky quirky little girl who comes and hops into our bed to give us a cuddle for much longer.  Soon she will not be doing that, soon she will be stealing the car keys and sneaking out with stinky boys.

Yes …. I know it is JUST a tooth ….

Georgia sporting the Cape Flats look …..

The Tooth Fairy pillow, much better than trying to retrieve the tooth from a shoe …. I have been hanging on to this thing for years.

Georgias was past excited, and could not wait to go to sleep ……. possibly if you  are struggling to get your child to sleep, you can start pulling teeth out and see how that works …. I am just saying.