So what actually happened? Please read this post — and tell me the wisdom of how we live through things like this.

I am not sure if you have read this post.

So what actually happened? This is how the best day turned into the worst day of my life 

This post, like everything else in my life, is me arriving late.  When everyone else is aware of something except me,  who holds the title of the designated idiot in the room.

I read this post about two nights back — I have had a run of insomnia and I am not sure how this post appeared on my feed.

How do you read this sort of post without your life changing?

Without your soul shifting — in one way or another?

How do you read this post and not sit there and consider, that you just DO NOT have any words.

No words to express the pain or to add comfort to a situation that is so painful that there just are not words in the English language that you could use?  That work.  That …. that are.

I read this post in contemplative silence.  I then got to the end and sat there and stared at it and realised that there wasn’t some magic ending.

There was no “Come to Jesus” moment or a “not a surprise this always happens” American movie ending where the hero sweeps in to save the day, to the soundtrack of some powerful music — there was just a family destroyed. No movie.  No nightmare to wake up from.

A life cruelly taken.  And nothing made sense.  Not to me.

Nothing.

I am agnostic, at best.  I cannot take comfort in religion — how do you find comfort here??  If the higher power took this child, how do you sit and say this higher power has a purpose for this child being taken??

Why could the higher power maybe not have just not taken this little boy, and maybe all the other little boys and girls — why do we have a higher power who does this?

Why this little boy — why so cruelly snatched away?  I do not understand.  My brain cannot comprehend or hold this thought.

natey_canter

{I hope Jane Fraser does not mind me using this image of her son —- her Natey}

How is this part of a plan of some mystical imaginary higher power?

How do I sit here, as a parent, and not wonder what if this was one of mine?

What if this was one of yours?

I have no words.

I have no words of comfort.

I have no words that can sooth the pain this family must be feeling.  I do not have words that can even comprehend this level of pain.

Why is there not a word in the English language for a parent who has lost a child?

I have no words that can explain why something like this would happen?

I have no words that I can use to explain in my head how and why this happens — and how we as parents can live through this loss.  Tell me how?

I have no words that can even touch on the pain – that can make it less tender, that can make it somehow less.

I have no words for Jane.

I have no words for her family.

I have no words for Natey.

I have no words for me.  Or you.

Read the story — hold your children a bit closer.  Put your face against their heads and smell their hair.  Avoid the urge to tell them to go and wash it — just smell them.

When they are fighting over the stupid things that children do — just smile, and count yourself as lucky.

Last night I had Isabelle with me — I had some medication to force me to sleep.  I was doing a 3 – 4 day run of not sleeping properly.  And I was at that point where reality starts to blur from insomnia and I was ready to sell my soul for sleep.  Or a donut.

Isabelle lay on my shoulder – she was sleeping in my bed.  I had put the lights off, it was 20h15.  I was searching through my podcasts for a story she may enjoy, which she could fall asleep to — it was still light outside, but she understood mom was tired and needed an early night.

I felt the weight of her.  I felt that warm hot musty breath that only young children have — I realised she had fallen asleep nestled against me.  On my shoulder.  Her body a little sweaty.  Her long eyelashes on her cheeks.

I thought of Jane and Natey —- I didn’t cry.  I closed my eyes and just breathed my child in.  Counted my luck/blessings/the twists of fate that made this moment possible.

I fell asleep with the weight of her against my shoulder and her presence against my skin.

Today I am crying.

My guess is tomorrow I will cry a bit more.

{I really hope Jane Fraser does not take offense that Natey has become the collective Natey to a lot of people.  I did not know this little boy — I was not that fortunate.  But there is a part of him somewhere in my spirit — somewhere in my consciousness he holds a space — he is there — I can’t explain it.}

 

 

 

I have said many things in my time, but calling someone a Fat Fuck has not been one of them …. and my life appears to be poorer for it

Recently there was a little activity on my blog and some people laughed, some people took the time to leave tips and suggestion about my parenting techniques, and gave me sage (interpret as totally useless) parenting advise, and others frothed at the mouth.

I fed the trolls a bit — I do see the error in my ways there.  I decided after Staci, I think it was, that really there are just too many stupid people in this world for me to change and try to change their narrow train of thought.  I had only glimpsed the stupid and if exponentially this was moved across the world and there were that proportion of stupid people to blogs, then we really are in a world of trouble, IQ and EQ wise.

While I am here …. I do want to point out something that seemed to anger people, and sent them into a fucking lather — people feel I called my daughter an “ungrateful little bitch.”

If you read the piece.  Like read it, with a sane mind and can grasp the concept of satire.  And READ IT without having to sound out the words aloud because your reading level allows you to comprehend what is in front of you.  Rather than say seeing something, jumping to an assumption and then yourself …. you may notice that I did not call her an ungrateful little bitch — I thought it, because well that was how she was behaving.

Let’s not get into details and stuff, it often spoils a good story.

What is more important is that you get the idea of how to school a Troll from a legend named Ellie.

Cathy dropped by and left this link on my comments page to this rather outstanding post written, by what I can only class as the brilliant and eloquent Ellie over at her blog Have Some Decorum.

I have never actually used the phrase “Fat Fuck” to answer a troll’s comment — it’s just not a phrase that ever popped into my head.  Before.  For anything. But moving forward, I am going to borrow it from Ellie and start to pepper my speech with it when it seems warranted.

Please go along and read her frighteningly clever, tragically sad and at the same time something wonderful blog post.

It starts with the Title,

Dear Fat Fuck,

and a brilliant image of a chicken — which already pushes this blog post into the realm of “oh my god, let’s make this woman president or queen  …… or something with a crown of sorts” ….

dear_fat_fuck

Dear Fat Fuck,

Jesus! I knew that when I started this blog that I could not assume everyone would love it. I knew I would have some haters. But here’s the thing, that’s okay, because I can take it. Trust me, I deal with much bigger problems than a few people who “dislike my blog.”

I started writing this blog with the intention of mostly talking about interior decorating but it has evolved into more than that. You may think that I am completely forthcoming with all that I talk about with this blog but I am not, at least not all at once. I tried to keep this blog light and lighthearted even if we talk about some deep subjects. However, there is so much that you don’t know. I intend to be an open book because that’s how I live my life. I do not have secrets and I tell everybody everything. It is not my intention to be Debbie Downer or exude a “woe is me attitude.” That is not who I am. I wake up happy and try to see the joy and beauty in every day. Of course, there is extreme ugliness with my disease that I spare you from. Why would you want to hear all of that? However, I will not spare anyone from it when I write my book. You can either choose to read it or not. But, today is different… Today is going to be ugly. I’m going to tell you some things that will make your jaw drop, I am going to call one person in particular a fat fuck about 400 times, and the unfortunate part of my disease will be exposed a little bit. If you want to quit reading, be my guest, because today I am going to be a total b*tch. However, I will be truthful. Tomorrow’s blog will go back to normal and we will talk about spaghetti carbonara and lasagna but today… Not so much.

I was reading a wonderful blog last night called The Gardener’s Cottage. It’s a really great blog and y’all should check it out. The author of the blog wrote a really sweet blog posting about me and I was going to the comments section so I could write something back to her and thank her for all of her kind words. I started to read all of the other comments that people had written about me… Really thoughtful, loving, supportive, endearing comments… Until there were about 10 comments from readers who basically hated me. Here’s the good news… I don’t care. Here’s the bad news… I do care.

Apparently, some of these readers (and the rudest one posted anonymously, of course) are miffed about my donation page on my blog. Let me give you a few examples of some of their grievances with my donation page…

Please pop along and read the rest of this brilliant way to respond to someone who fucking has no clue what they are talking about.  But then pops along and leaves the equivalent of a taking a shit on your blog.

After reading Ellie’s response, I was convinced that “Fat Fuck” was too dear a term to be used for this particular brave ANON —- but I could not think of a better one that ‘YOU FAT FUCK!!”

Enjoy her blog — and yes, it is a pleasure.

{falls on the floor in adoration – this chick has bigger balls than Hank ……. but most chicks do I am afraid}

Trolls and idiots ….. especially the ones named Hank …..

I have been blogging for several years.

I have been on social media for several more.

I am used to the usual on-line bullying, trolls arriving and basically taking a shit on your door step in a brown paper bag and generally say things that are painful and hurtful.

5 years ago I had what can only be described as a breakdown. I had various other things happening in my life that I was not coping with.

There were 3 “social media” things that had happened in quick succession.

One I caused using poor judgement at work, one I happened to just be standing there and got caught in the fall out of a non related incident, and one had nothing to do with me but it felt like it was aimed at me.

People hiding behind “usernames” and “gmail” addresses and the like, get terribly brave and feel very little in the way of any real interest in you as a person, the subject and the damage they do.

They sweep in under the cover of darkness, cause chaos, step away like arsonists and watch the building burn, without taking any responsibility because “I just commented ……” – they want the building to burn, for no other reason than they have one match and in many cases know how to get a fire going.  Quickly.

I admit to saying stupid things sometimes – both in life and in the land of O’s and I’s.

I do hope that I learn from my errors, and when possible I apologise.  I accept we are all jerks given the right circumstances – and that given a few hours or days to reflect we realise that.  In time one hopes to be less of an arsehole than you are today, and each day get a bit less arsehole’ish.

That was 5 years ago – I have moved on a great deal from then.  I am not totally immune to trolls and people who are idiots, but their effect on me is less and they no longer consume me.

I realise it is their shit, and not mine, and I do not have to take it on board.

I realise they are trolls.  I realise their opinions, like arseholes, are things we are all entitled to one (sorry I know it is an old jab, but there we go) – before I would believe what they said, now I do tend to shrug it off for the most part.

They/Trolls/The Hanks in the world do not know me.

They have a perception of me, and their assumptions are just that — assumptions without much in the way of fact.  {if you read this blog and assume everything here is fact, then I have a bridge for sale I would like to talk to you about}

Yesterday a gentleman named Hank left a comment and it vexed me.

Not because he commented, not because he sounded like a ball-less turd with no sense of humour and an unholy obsession with the speed of cakes flying around on the N1.  He used ONE post from my blog to make a judgement about me and my parenting style.  (even if he read all 1030 or how many ever there are, that still does not mean he knows me.)

Again Hank, I actually do not give a flying fuck about your opinion.

The blog post in question for the most part made it obvious who has children and is coping with similiar stuff, versus people who do not have children and think because they have testes and possibly access to ovaries this makes them experts on parenting.

But none of that matters.

What matters for me — is that YOU — who does not know me and who told me you do not read my blog – attacked my children.

Listen Hank, I am not quite sure of which corner of the shit heap that is this universe you crawled out from under, but there are many things you can do or say to a blogger/mom.

Insult me, accuse me of making bad judgments,  not understand why the odd cake needs to be launched from a moving vehicle, and not grasp what it is like to fight with children over pieces of plastic.

I accept all of that from you with an open mind and to a large degree a bit of a shrug and a “ah well…. he is probably a bit of a c&nt”

Hank, I am on board with that.

If you want to be the biggest c&nty c*nt there is, then I support you in that.  I am there for you mate, right behind you.  I will wear “Hank is a C&nt” lapel pin if you need me to.

The part where you lost my respect (not that you ever had it, but I thought I would throw it in just so I appear classy and stylish) and you really stepped over the imaginary line that exists in the world, is the part where you deemed it was okay to comment about my children and who they are in this world.

You get that part – MY CHILDREN!!

Did you have CRACK for breakfast yesterday???

I wrote a very emotional post last night and posted it earlier, and decided to put it on “password protect” – if you know me, contact me and I will send you the password.  I don’t think it is for general consumption.

I agree it is way to much venom to put straight out there and takes away from the fact that a fellow named Hank felt it was okay — O-FUCKING-KAY —– to come out and attack my children and refer to them as delinquents – potential delinquents.

Hank, I dare you – I dare you to come and find me in public and say that to my face.

I actually dare you, seeing as you appear to have balls as big as burgers, to walk up to any mom in Pick ‘n Pay or any other retailer and offer her advise, criticism and then insult her children whilst she is doing the best she can, in the best way she can.

You know nothing about what it is like to be a parent and cope —- even if you are a parent, parenting your children or child, does not make you an expert on some one else’s – no more than owning a car makes you a motoring journalist expert.

Last night I was at Pick ‘n Pay buying the odds and ends, my kids were at home.  I watched a frazzled mom with two toddlers in her trolley going ape shit — like totally ape shit.  She looked like she had just fought the gladiators, and then for shits and giggles had gone to pull the hair off a tiger’s arse on a dare.

This woman was exhausted and one “whine” way from a full fledged breakdown.

Her kids were screaming.  Mental because she only had one #stikeez – she had clearly miscalculated and her bill was less than R300.00 so she got one #stikeez.

I got it. I stood there with my wagon of groceries and I wanted to go over to her and rub her shoulders, maybe play with her hair in a soothing manner  and say “fuck I hope they go to sleep early” – but I didn’t.

I also did not judge her and I did not pull any low blows — because I get it.  I fucking get it.  I have been there, and most of the readers on this blog have been there – we fucking live there. Your kids screaming like banshees whilst everyone else’s children appear so well behaved it makes you want to throw up.

Instead Hank you hide behind your work, email address (troll error 101 —- are you a virgin at this, or do you usually leave your work IP details behind for bloggers to find you?) and give me parenting advise.

Insult me, insult my children, and for good measure insult the people who have read this blog and commented.  Are you actually really and truly that much of a does??  I am overwhelmed by you.  By the sheer level of does you have managed to squeeze into one shitty comment.

My children have been through a divorce, a death and several life changing events in the last two years.  My kids are fucking awesome kids.  I commented about that in the earlier post and here is what I added there:

Like super FUCKING stars.

My son attended an eisteddfod this week and scored really well, even though he only had two days to prepare.  He donates his time when he can to causes that are close to his heart.  You understand he is 13 – he is 13 and volunteers.

What the fuck do you do when you are not lambasting bloggers?

My second daughter is stellar at Mathematics and might even one day get a job at Discovery Health (see what I did there) as a statistician. She is kind, loving and does not have a mean bone in her body.  She has friends who adore her.  She is kind, patient and will hug anyone who stand still long enough.  She can recite the periodic table — she is 10.

My other daughter is a fire cracker – she is bright, clever, fucking funny and I adore every inch of her.  She sleeps with me at night and drapes her chubby hand over my shoulder so that she lies close to me – she has slept with me since her father and I got divorced – kids sometimes need a bit of extra time and the close touch of a parent.

You understand right?

She is loved and adored.  She thinks our Nannies daughter is her sister —- I have not corrected her.  Why should I?

{does this in any way sound like maladjusted delinquent children?}

Hank – after today I will not give you another thought.  Though when I do, the fact that your name rhymes with Wank and your mom called you that, will make me smile a little childishly.

I do hope that even if you hate this blog, detest my tone and use of language and think my children are maladjusted little so-and-so’s you keep in mind, fuck with a blogger, go ahead, do that, in general we have skins that are fairly thick — but fuck with a mom’s children and you my friend make yourself out to be the biggest arsehole there is, and what ever else you might do or say is null and void.

I do hope that one day if you have the great fortune to become a parent, someone comes over to you, insults you, your wife, your child and your parenting style. To your face.

I do hope this happens to you, and you can reflect then as I hope you are now, that you my dear sir, are an arsehole of a proportion that I cannot even begin to fathom.

I do hope you never read this blog again.

I do hope that you live a long’ish life, but if you happened to die in a cake accident, I might not be too cut up about it.

My three kids and I are going to go off and skip down the hills singing that song “The Hills are alive with Music” —- I do hope you go and fuck yourself.

Yes, I said it.  But it is because I care.

Protected: I know Hank rhymes with Wank, but that seemed too easy ….

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For f*k sake, why do PR companies get it so wrong?

{I have been wanting to post this for some time, but I keep thinking that one of the rules of media is not to alienate all the potential advertisers and PR companies.  Surely.  I have however come to the conclusion that I really am not dependent on advertisers, and PR companies .. .. or their products. So, with that in mind, here is me throwing caution to the wind ……}

141001_quote

 

I am not exactly the darling of the media industry.

I really do not care much for free give-aways.  I don’t really want to punt your product on my blog, and I automatically delete press releases that have been spammed on to me.

I have very little interest in trying to make a living through my blog.

I like to blog.  I like to blog when I want.  About what I want.  When I want.

Nothing makes me less likely to blog than feeling forced to blog about something or someone.

I do not really want to watch my P’s and Q’s when it comes to whether I am going to have a bit of a shit fit at a later stage that may or may not involve your product or your client’s company.

I really just could not be arsed.

The last Blog Meetup I went to – there was quite a bit of talk about Bloggers and PR Companies and how we can work together.

I have had very limited experience with PR companies other than the odd SPAM.  I get really frustrated when I get press release, after press release, after fucking press release.  {though I do ask to be removed from the mailing list …. politely}

I have not posted a press release on my blog.  Ever.  I am not likely to start now.

I do try to be as courteous as I can – if you think Reluctant Mom and your client can do something together, then contact me directly with something that sort of interests me, and will appeal to my readers.

The problem is I get invited to events.  In Johannesburg.  I AM IN CAPE TOWN.

I get notified about products that have ABSOLUTELY no relevance to my life.

In get sent the same thing that almost ever blogger is sent.  So even though I MIGHT be vaguely interested in your product, when I see the same thing pop up on 5 other bloggers pages, then I am not going to be posting it on mine.

I get press releases.  I DO NOT POST PRESS RELEASES.

I get asked by PR companies about my visits/hits/pap smear results.  NO, YOU CANNOT HAVE MY NUMBERS, NOW GO AWAY!

I am sure there are lovely, bright, clever and some very talented PR people out there.

I am almost sure of it, though the evidence that I am presented with leads me to believe otherwise.

Why do PR people not work harder at forging relationships with specific bloggers, rather than spamming all of them?

Or is this a numbers game and you send 100 mail shots in the hope of getting 2 that will stick?

If so, that even makes me feel more special.  In theory I am a motorist and you are just handing out brochures at a street corner, and hoping one of us is going to read it and then go and buy your pizza {insert product} or tell a friend about it.

I can honestly say my soul dies a little every time my mail box opens and there is something from a PR company.

I want to be excited about your PR company.

I want to be wowed by the product you are trying to punt.

I want to think “wow, you are so clever you have really got my attention ……”

I love a good advertising campaign — I do.  Make me think, make me go “hey I am intrigued” and I am yours for the taking.

The problem is that your email is generic.  And so annoying that you irritate me.

I just want to delete you. With a hard delete, not the soft one where I can change my mind and go and get you out of my deleted folder later.

 

I also accept that I might be the only blogger who thinks this way, and there are PR folks who are getting it right.  Or not.

Bloggers with no clothes on … does this make them easier to socialise with?

This weekend a few bloggers got together and visited Thyme Day Spa to do a treatment together – it was more of an exercise to get to know each other better, and see if we could interact outside the safety of the blogosphere.

I knew one of the bloggers well.

I knew one of the bloggers in passing.

There were two bloggers who I had never met personally, but I had seen at the last Blogger Meet-up.

To just clarify, I am painfully shy and being in close proximity to people I don’t know, with the threat of having to make small talk paralyses me.  I chose to accept the invitation as another step in the direction to force me into social situations, when in truth I would rather hide at home and stroke my social phobia with a large glass of wine, and my cat.

The day was planned, and this required us to all go into a room – a particularly small room, to take all our clothes off and put on swim suits.

I have body issues.  I was not going to shave as my wax is booked for tomorrow.  Not only was I going as Orca, but I was also going as hairy Neanderthal Orca.

I was mortified that I would have to wear a swim suit in front of people I barely knew because at the moment I do not even wear a swim suit in front of no one.  I just tried not to think about it.

There were 5 of us.  Everyone got undressed – there was no where to hide, this was a really small room.  As we undressed we were practically knocking elbows against each other.  There was no where to hide your shyness, or to try and slink behind anything.

After that we all got herded into a sauna room – again really small.  Cheek to jowel sort of stuff. And there we sat.

Five girls all sort of strangers to each other.  Sweating. Mascara creating the panda bear look.  With not too much in the way of clothing, and being given a little container with mud and scrubs.

The awkwardness lasted about 30 seconds, then everyone was talking, and rubbing mud on each other.

We had been given very clear instructions NOT TO PUT THE MUD on our faces or our nipples.  Of course then we had to inquire why this instruction was given.  Clearly someone had put mud onto their face and nipples, with less than ideal side effects.

The friendly therapist made her eyes bigger, and spoke in a very clear voice NO FACE OR NIPPLES!!  Which we all repeated back to her — several times NO FACE OR NIPPLES!!  It sort of became the mantra for the day eventually #nofacenonipples.

After the sauna, where we had to rinse off and there was a lot of polite “shall I spray you off?” going on, as you do.

We moved to the jacuzzi, we were served bubbly and we proceeded to chat like we had known each other for ages.

We had lunch and then had a bit of a lie around in the sun and chatted.

One of the bloggers/Sally Jane Cameron posted a note on Facebook and I think it encapsulated what we all felt, but might have struggled to find the exact words for:

This might be a little deep for Saturday night but it occurred to me that an activity like this helps to facilitate a deeper connection between women than a normal full clothed outing. The sense of vulnerability maybe? But sharing and being honest was cleansing for the emotions too. Laughing was good for the soul.

How do you know that it has all gone well and there is little in the way of awkwardness left?  When we stand around feeling the one bloggers breasts.  True story!!

It really was a good day.  Lovely group of women ….. hope to do something similiar again.

{I think we all had an unspoken agreement that no one was going to take photographs and post them anywhere …….}

 

 

This was the only image taken on the day.  Thanks to Charlotte for organising evening.

“I have lost touch with a couple of people I used to be….”

I saw this quote and it reminded me of the power of keeping a blog.

The way you record who you are and how you feel about something.  I think the key to blogging is to be truthful with yourself.  Writing for yourself is difficult enough, I can’t imagine how difficult it would be to write for someone else.

My blog has become part of me — but at the same my blog is not every part of me.

As of late I have had a lot of things I need to work through in my head – and I work better with stuff in my head by taking it out of my head, and putting it on paper.

I journal constantly.  It may not quite be formal note book keeping, but it is writing down my thoughts. I often start an empty page with “How do you feel today?”

And then I write.

I do need places to write, to jot down thoughts, to sometimes work through a thought that is running in my head.  Journalling and blogging allows me that privilege.  There are a lot of things in my head that I can’t put down on this blog — probably because they are too personal, or because they are work in progress, and I need a bit of time to understand where I stand, so I prefer to jot them down in a standard A4 hard cover book with my fountain pen.

There is something therapeutic about shaping the letters and watching the ink soak into the page.

What I love about this blog and journalling is that I also get to look back over time and realise that I have changed who I am, or how I think about something.  And how much I have changed in some ways, but not in others.

I thought an idea was a good one before, does not mean I still do.

It also gives me permission to make decisions based on how I feel — because sometimes that is all you have to go on.

I get to look back over my experiences with my kids and realise how much I truly like them.

I know we all love our kids, but I really like my kids – they are funny, and clever and make me laugh out loud.  I look back over some of the stuff they have said and done that I have recorded on this blog, and I know they will hate it and cringe later, but I think they will also smile at themselves.  Or refuse to talk to me from 13 – 19 years old.

Let’s just wait to see how that pans out.

This year has been one of huge shifts and adjustments.

I have learnt a great deal about myself in the last 9 or 10 months.  At the same time realised I know almost nothing about me, and life and stuff and things.

Some days I feel all powerful and I can take on the world, the next I feel like sitting in the corner blubbering like a village idiot without a village.

I continue to do stupid things – daily – and also things that defy my perception of how brilliant I am.  And have the potential to be.

I have made some brave decisions, and some stupid choices — and above all I am trying not to expend too much energy beating myself up about the stupid ones, and try not to get too over inflated with the brave ones.   The day often ends with a glass of wine on the couch and the noise inside my head often gets quiet, which is a peaceful place to be.

Tomorrow is another day, and there will be a new set of choices and decisions …. and probably some McDonalds meal choices, and we know those can be tough too.

“I have lost touch with a couple of people I used to be….”

 

I have lost touch

Everyone I know is brokenhearted

A link to this blog post popped up on my Facebook feed — it is a long post, but worth sitting down and reading.

The blogger is:

My name is Josh Ellis. I’m a writer, editor, former newspaper columnist, full stack web designer and developer (with a focus on PHP, JS, Node and the Meteor framework) and musician. I’ve traveled and lived all over the world, but I currently make my home in Yakima, WA, the “Palm Springs of Washington State”.

 

This is probably one of the truest, most profound, most painful, most concise, most clear, most what-the-fuck-is-happening here ones you are going to read in a long time.

Read it now, or bookmark to come back when you have some more time.

 

All the genuinely smart, talented, funny people I know seem to be miserable these days. You feel it on Twitter more than Facebook, because Facebook is where you go to do your performance art where you pretend to be a hip, urbane person with the most awesomest friends and the best relationships and the very best lunches ever. Facebook is surface; Twitter is subtext, and judging by what I’ve seen, the subtext is aching sadness.

 

I’m not immune to this. I don’t remember ever feeling this miserable and depressed in my life, this sense of futility that makes you wish you’d simply go numb and not care anymore. I think a lot about killing myself these days. Don’t worry, I’m not going to do it and this isn’t a cry for help. But I wake up and think: fuck, more of this? Really? How much more? And is it really worth it?

 

In my case, much of it stems from my divorce and the collapse of the next relationship I had. But that’s not really the cause. I think that those relationships were bulwarks, charms against the dark I’ve felt growing in this world for a long time now. When I was in love, the world outside didn’t matter so much. But without it, there is nothing keeping the wolf from the door.

 

It didn’t used to be like this when I was a kid. I’m not getting nostalgic here, or pretending that my adolescence and my twenties were some kind of soft-focused Golden Age. Life sucked when I was young. I was unhappy then too. But there was always the sense that it was just a temporary thing, that if I stuck it out eventually the world was going to get better — become awesome, in fact. –

See more at: http://zenarchery.com/2014/08/everyone-i-know-is-brokenhearted/#sthash.44zsdu2C.dpuf

#ctmeetup and social anxiety …… and neck sweat

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This is happening — and is has been organised by the highly efficient and very talented Cindy.  She has a great post with all the bodies who will be attending.

Sounds great.  I am sure it will be better than great.  More great!!

Right?

Me?  I am feeling nauseous.  I have neck sweat and the feeling of bile sitting in the back of my throat.

I do love social anxiety.

I checked my diary –  it is the 9 August 2014 – nine days away.  Only 8 days.  I can already see myself staring at the ceiling at night wondering what hell I have set myself up for.

I am sure it will be lovely.

I am sure it will be more than lovely.

I am sure it will be fabulous.

I am sure I will trip as I walk in.

I am sure I will be more socially awkward than normal, which is already pretty sad and tragic.

I really am feeling a bit ill.

I am trying to work out whether I can write myself a sick note.

I get flushed at the thought of having to make conversation with anyone.

I called Charlotte and asked her if she would hold my hand — the entire time.  So we are going.  Like a couple.  An awkward couple.  She suggested we drink Appletizer.  I suggested she take her medication.  {no I didn’t}

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Parents – how they get it right, and how they get it so very wrong …..

I have always been critical over my parents and their ability to parent.

I have written some scathing blog posts in the past.

At the time, that was how I felt.

This blog is where I put my thoughts, my ramblings and sometimes my emotional spews.

I know I can go back and delete, block or amend the many blog posts that I do not necessarily agree with anymore. Or the ones that I do not feel the same about at the moment … I could.  I prefer not to.

One of the things I like about blogging, is that it gives me the luxury to go back and read my thoughts.  To see how I felt about something.  And compare that to how I think and feel about something now.

To recapture my emotions in a slice of time.  To see my view point then.  And compare it to now.  That is a rare gift, and blogging allows that.

My parents should never have married.  If they did not have sex, that would actually have been great too.

Then there would have been no pregnancy, and  no p (more…)

Suicide Bunny gets me through the day …. sometimes

I am so behind, and keep missing out on these ones, so yes, my blog challenge is pretty much ending up in the toilet.

There was one on day 4  that went along the lines of:  Is there something in your life that you absolutely can’t live without?  What is it and why can’t you imagine life without it?

Let’s assume that I am not permitted to list any of these, which would make life barely worth living if they did not exist:

  • My children
  • My friends
  • Nutella Chocolate Spread
  • Lays chips
  • Chuckles
  • The feeling of emerging yourself in a hot bath that smells like Orange Blossoms at the end of a day when you feel chilled to your bones
  • Wine
  • Toothpaste, toothbrush and ablution facilities
  • Books
  • Beautiful pens to write with
  • Tea
  • Good restaurants
  • Woolworths
  • Good sushi
  • Laughing until you snort
  • Dexter, Parker, and Jackson
  • My laptop
  • My leather boots from Poetry
  • Falling asleep on the couch whilst watching a movie
  • Oxygen, the o-zone layer, the earth’s magnetic force, the sun —- and all the other bits and bobs that keep us stuck to the earth’s surface and wake up to survive another day.

The list is somewhat endless of what I would choose not to live without, and items that are quite dear to my heart.  I could keep this list going until we both got very bored, if you are not there already.

To relook at the question –  Is there something in your life that you absolutely can’t live without? 

I gave it some real thought, not just about “can’t live” but “can’t survive” without ……

I can’t live without humour.  Without my humour often times than not.

I do not think I would NOT have survived my life, or myself without having my sense of humour.

This year has been a total shit festival, on many levels, and even when I was sitting in the corner crying, I still have managed to make myself laugh with the ridiculous way my mind often filters and orders information.

Even at my lowest, my internal funny voice has made me smile, a bit.

My humour is often the vehicle that gets me out of bed, and functioning.  My humour and self deprecating style has been my best tool, and my fondest companion against what could have been and still may be the rapid and quick demise into madness.

Or  more extreme levels of madness, than I am already dealing with.

I need my humour to look at things differently.

I need my humour to be able to absorb something that my brain is often times screaming against.

I need my humour to get me through my day.

I am not of the society that believes “a day without a laugh is a day lost” but I need my humour to help me cope.

I am sitting looking at a very serious letter that I need to attend to.  I have already read through it, and I knew that it was coming.

I know what it says, I know what I need to do, I am not sure if I can do it — or whether this letters fore spells a rather unfortunate change of circumstances that I will need to deal with very soon.

It is not a happy letter.

It does not make me feel warm and fuzzy, but my humour and my rather wry way of looking at situations, does help me to carry on and get this day done without offing myself by means of a papercut.  Granted it would need to be a very deep papercut.

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You never really know someone …. and other snap judgements

 

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Blogging is a funny old thing to do isn’t it?

You sit and write about your life, then have total strangers pop over and have a read.

Those total strangers leave comments, some times those comments are more “character building” than others.

And you meet those “strangers” — and in some cases you become friends, and in others you issue a restraining order.

I read other bloggers work – granted not as regularly as I used to.

I used to trawl around and discover bloggers.  Then spend 4 – 6 hours reading their blogs from the first post to the last.  It was like reading a novel, filled with happiness, heart ache, tears, joy, love and loss ….. quite beautiful to behold.

Bloggers and what they blog have changed my life significantly.

I have learnt so many life lessons through other people’s accounts of their lives.  Of what they have shared. Of what they have been brave enough to put out there for me to read.

I have laughed and cried over people and their joy and pain, who I will never meet.

For those few hours, whilst I read their blogs, I felt an affinity, a closeness with them, that resonated with me somewhere in my heart, or soul, or brain.

The problem with blogs, is that you actually are given snap shots in to a blogger’s world or life.  You do not actually know them.

Sure, you have an idea of who they are.  Possibly you get a sense of how they may react if you threw cold water on them, but you do not really know them.

Blogging, like anything creative is sometimes about a persona that is created.  Sometimes you write and it is with a particular slant, or a way of expressing yourself.  But is not actually who you are.  Not totally.

My blog gives glimpses of who I am.

I talk about how I feel at a particular time — it may be filled with emotion and raw honesty, because it is how I feel at that exact moment in time.

I have no issue with writing posts that I know I will disagree with in 10 days time.  Or where in 6 months I may have a totally different view on that subject.

How I feel on a day, and how I am able to express that thought and emotion is dependent on many factors.

What I write here is not the everything of me.  This is not a summary of who I am, this is not a “quick tool” to get to know me – a cheat sheet as it were.

To say that you know me absolutely based on the last four years of my writing, would be inaccurate.  Hasty.  Flawed.

I am glad – thrilled – that people read my blog.

Even though I have slowly become the world’s worst blogger —  I am madly excited that people cheer me on when I have had a shit day or am going through a bit of a disaster.   I often feel such a sense of joy when people send me private emails and leave messages on this blog.

In some cases people want to give me a hug when I am feeling bad —-  I think as a reader, and even as a blogger, it is good to make the realization that reading someone’s blog, does not make you know them.

This blog is not my life — it is portions that I choose to share with you.  But it is not the total sum of me.

I am all these things on this blog, and a thousand other things.  In some cases I am more, in others I am less.

I share a great deal.

I write on my blog, to large degree, like I am in real life.  There are parts of who I really am represented here, but there are many aspects to me that I keep to myself.  Those parts I share with people who know me, who really know me.  And parts I never share, because they are mine alone.

Please don’t think you know me just because you’ve read my blog.

 

 

 

Reluctant Mom’s Blog won the Kidzworld Mommy Blogger of the Year 2013

The winner and runners up were announced late last week on the KIDZWORLD website.

1st prize – The Reluctant Mom’s Blog – https://reluctantmom.wordpress.com/
2nd prize – Belinda Mountain who blogs over at “Making Mountains” – http://makingmountains.co.za/
3rd prize – Natasha Clark who blogs over at “Raising Men” – http://littleandbunny.blogspot.com/

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I really was pleased.  I know it is very bad acceptance speech material to say that “it was a surprise” – but it was.

I have really been off my blogging game for a while.  I know that a lot of the bloggers who made the short list work exceptionally hard on their blogs, and write good stuff – so to win is really an honour.

I have a lot of things going on in my personal space that I can’t blog about, but are taking huge amounts of energy and my focus.

My humble and grateful thanks to everyone and anyone who took the time to nominate and vote the The Reluctant Mom’s Blog in the competition.

Winning shit makes me super happy — and it is always nice when my blog gets props.

This blog is l something I hold dear, even when I treat it like a wasteland of bitching.  It’s still my little corner where I retreat to when I need to try to find sanity in it all.

Thank you very much to everyone, and congratulations to the other nominees and the other two bloggers who were in the top three.

These bloggers were nominated and made the top 10 short list:

Cindy Alfino who blogs over at “3 Kids, 2 Dogs, 1 old House” – http://alfinos.wordpress.com/

Chereen Strydom who blogs over at “For the Beauty of It” – http://forthebeautyofit.blogspot.com/

Stacey Vee who blogs over at “Living Lionheart” http://www.livinglionheart.co.za/

Tanya Kovarsky who blogs at “Rattle and Mum” – http://www.rattleandmum.co.za/

Sharon van Wyk who blogs over at “The Blessed Barrenness”  http://www.theblessedbarrenness.co.za/

Amy Westerman who blogs over at “The Grace Factory” – http://thegracefactory.co.za/

Sarah Huddy who blogs over at “The Mommy City” – http://www.themommycity.co.za/

{apologise if I have spelt anything wrong, please let me know if I have}

 

Mommy Bloggers hear us roar …..

What are you working on right now?

I am really struggling with an army of financial shit.  I am trying to juggle finding R260.00 for a full body wax versus finding R15 000.00 for a French Bulldog.   I have cancelled the butt wax to save for the French Bulldog.

Where did the idea for The Reluctant Mom’s Blog come from?

I had just expelled Isabelle via a c-section. I was pretty convinced I had this parenting thing waxed, what with having two already and being well read on the subject.

When I started to wonder how hard I had to throw Isabelle against the wall so I could have 30 seconds of silence, I realised I had failed this parenting malarkey – and badly.

I needed a place to shit myself in public, and to try and work through some of my thoughts.  I was pretty convinced at the time that I was the only mom feeling so helpless and distressed by having a baby.  Blogging helped, and I also realised I needed a good dose of medication and a guy who knows what CBT means.

What does your typical day look like?

I wake up and am barely awake.

I throw on an assortment of clothing, brush my teeth and scream “ AM LEAVING EVERYONE BETTER GET IN THE CAR NOW!”  On occasion I do this on a Saturday morning and then the result is me sitting in the car honking the horn like a mad person and thinking “FUCK, CAN I GET THESE KIDS INTO A BOARDING SCHOOL AT PRE-PRIMARY LEVEL?”

How do you bring ideas to life?

Wine.

What’s one trend that really excites you?

Wine.

What was the worst job you ever had and what did you learn from it?

Waitressing.

At a restaurant that we had to come in on a Saturday at 10h00 to set up the restaurant for a shift that started at 17h00.  We had to pay the kitchen staff to wash the cutlery and crockery so we could set the tables.

I stuck it out for nearly a year – whilst I had an full time day job during the day – and then left it for another waitressing position with 0nly slightly less restrictive work conditions.  I think it showed me that people in the service industry, are often exposed to less than ideal working conditions, and I try to be courteous to “service” people.

If you were to start again, what would you do differently?

I would like to have David Beckham sperm in my DNA so that I would be born pretty, rich and really thin.

If you could change one thing in the world, what would it be and how would you go about it?

  1.  There has got to be a way to stop people from posting stupid Facebook status updates that require people to ask “so what’s up honey..” until they confess later in the thread that their cat died ……
  2. Friday Public Hangings for Child Abusers and Child Rapists.

Tell us a secret.

I am going to sell my soul to buy that French Bulldog.

What are your three favorite online tools or resources and what do you love about them?

Pinterest – because it makes me spend hours wondering how I can plait my hair, and make a cupboard out of toilet rolls.  None of which I will ever do.

Linkedin – like Facebook for adults.

Twitter – still quite a recent discovery for me.  Have  I told you how much I love @XplodingUnicorn

What is the one book that you recommend people should read and why?

I read a great deal, so this is a tricky question.  I know it is probably not deep and meaningful, but one of the books that have stuck with me over the last few years in how simply it was written but so profoundly moving was The Book Thief by Markus Zusak.

Three people we should follow on Twitter and why?

I am really a newbie to Twitter but my favourite things that pop up on my twitter feed belong to:

@XplodingUnicorn –  I have no idea who this person is, but I am hoping to camp out in his garden pretty soon, with my Cape Union Mart tent.

@Parentpains Because of this post – Apparently, women only enjoy a nice romantic breakfast in bed when they know how you got in their house.

Yes, I know that is only two.

 When was the last time you laughed out loud? What caused it?

I am experiencing a spate of depression at the moment, so laughing is pretty far down my list of survival skills.  Trying to smile is already and exercise in super powers.

Who is your hero?

School teachers everywhere!!!  After 5 days of school holidays I have an entire new respect for them, and feel embarrassed that I did not volunteer to donate a kidney or a liver to any of them who may need it.

Bloggers who you would like to take part?

Countess over at http://countesskaz.wordpress.com

Sharon over at http://theblessedbarrenness.co.za

And

Charlotte over at http://thestilettomum.wordpress.com/

No there are no rules to this, but here is a blog graphic to use just in case you would like to use it and pass it on to three other Bloggers who you would like to recognise and hear their background story – and give some props to Bloggers who you thing are doing it well.

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Please vote for The Reluctant Mom as Mommy Blogger 2013 – please pop along and VOTE today.

Click – click, capture a few personal things, and then it is all over.

Voting closes on 15 December 2013 at midnight.

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{http://www.kidzworld.co.za/competitions/mommy-blogger.html}

On your marks, get set …. go Mommy Blogger Competition 2013

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The Kidzworld.co.za nominations are all in and have been tallied up!

The Reluctant Mom Blog made the shortlist this year, so that is pretty cool.

I am not in the habit of false modesty, but I really was a bit surprised and pleased when I saw the notification on Twitter.

I have been a pretty shitty blogger of late, and am a bit wrapped up in my own head.

I have not courted sponsors as I should.

So really I have had fuck’all to give away and attract you to come by and visit – and I have also realised I have not posted enough “good heavens I am so happy right now” posts with associated pictures of my food.

None the less, even at a clear lack of baubles to attract you and captivate your attention, you still were kind enough to go along and give me a nomination.

Yay for you.  Super yay for me.

{walks over to the fridge to pour herself a drink}

Thank you for anyone, and everyone, and anyone who told someone to go along and nominate this blog.

I know the registering to vote/nominate is a bit “off putting” it does make you start to get concerned how much information Kidzworld is actually capturing about you, and as you really just want to leave a vote, and do not necessarily want to have to received weekly emails about them.

I do  realise that going along to cast a Vote might be a big ask and pretty much goes against all your instincts of “not giving your personal information to any web site to try to market their crap to you” —- I feel your pain.  Truly I do.  But there is no way around it.

The top nominees are (and it is great to see some new ones popping up):

Cindy Alfino who blogs over at “3 Kids, 2 Dogs, 1 old House” – http://alfinos.wordpress.com/

Chereen Strydom who blogs over at “For the Beauty of It” – http://forthebeautyofit.blogspot.com/

Stacey Vee who blogs over at “Living Lionheart” http://www.livinglionheart.co.za/

Belinda Mountain who blogs over at “Making Mountains” – http://makingmountains.co.za/

Natasha Clark who blogs over at “Raising Men” – http://littleandbunny.blogspot.com/

Tanya Kovarsky who blogs at “Rattle and Mum” – http://www.rattleandmum.co.za/

Sharon van Wyk who blogs over at “The Blessed Barrenness”  http://www.theblessedbarrenness.co.za/

Any Westerman who blogs over at “The Grace Factory” – http://thegracefactory.co.za/

Sarah Huddy who blogs over at “The Mommy City” – http://www.themommycity.co.za/

{apologise if I have spelt anything wrong, please let me know if I have}

I don’t know all of these blogs, but it has given me a few more to go along and stalk, so that is always good.

 

Like one of the blogs, like my blog, go along to Kidzworld and vote for your favourite blogger or your favourite blogger right now – and VOTE HERE.

Click – click, capture a few personal things, and then it is all over.

 

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The small print:

It’s now time for you to vote for your favourite Mommy Blogger by completing the form and clicking on the subscribe button.

You will receive an email confirming your vote request.

You will need to click on the link on that email to confirm your nomination.

This double opt in email is to help discount spam bots.

Voting closes on 15 December 2013 at midnight.

Let the Mommy Blogger know you have voted for her so that she may post a “Vote for Me” badge (see below) on her blog to attract additional votes.

The Mommy Bloggers who receive the top votes in the voting round will be placed 1st (most votes received), 2nd and 3rd and will receive vouchers accordingly.

 

 

 

Protected: How your blog post can get you fired or never hired …..

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The annoying and persistent begging starts ….. cloaked in humility of course ….

It is that time of year again – the Kidzworld Mommy Blogger Competition has started.

I cringe slightly as this is about the same time that I start  appealing to your ability to click on the badge and Nominate Me.

I will do it subtly (not so much), so that I do not sound as desperate as I feel when I am faced with these things.

The next step will be my constant pestering that you “please, for the love of gd go and nominate me …”

When that is done,  there will be ever more begging and pleading, with some grovelling.  I may even promise tasteful nudity – and repeat updates on my Facebook status of “please pop along and vote” or something of that ilk.

I will always appear to sound non-nonchalant and “oh I do not worry about that sort of thing … ”

Heads up.  It is all a lie.  Of course I care.  You get a shiny badge, bragging rights, and on-line vouchers and a batch of books!!!

I would like to say that I am above this.  I would, but let’s have an honesty moment.

I would like to take this opportunity to prepare you for the “oh my heavens, I am just honoured to be nominated” or there might be a bit of “oh for fuck sake just go and vote —- after all I have done for you” which will eventually end in “I really no longer care if you vote or not it is a stupid competition….”

This statement will be associated with constant and annoying re-checking and hoping that I at least make the short list.

I will constantly keep wondering if I was a bit nicer, swore a bit less, and really made more of an effort I could climb over the dead and bleeding bodies of my competition … and was far nicer to sponsors would that have helped?

I will tut-tut, avert my eyes and say things like “oh that silly competition … it really does not count for anything …. really I am so not bothered..”

I am the Sally Fields of Mommy Bloggers — pick me, pick me, you must really like me –please do not leave me standing her in my stupid PT shorts and no bra -because-I-have-no-breasts-and-my-,mom-refuses-to-fork-out-for-a-crop-top-which-looks-like-a-bra PT shirt.

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Yes I do realise this entire post sounds like I need to pop back to my Dr Pill and ask him to up my Serequel and Serdep … but there you go, it’s been that sort of week.

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Here is the Nominate Button – there really is absolutely nothing in it for you, this is truly all about me — I would like to say that you win a lucky draw or something, but it seems not.  This is all about me and my four year old child The Reluctant Mom Blog vying for first place with all the other really pretty and talented children/blogs vying for your vote.

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You can pop along to the site and read about how the competition works, and all of that jazz, but here is the Executive Summary:

1.  Click on button and nominate Reluctant Mom – I will be doing this until the 30 November 2013.

2.  The blogs with the most Nominations will be sorted into the top 10 or top something number.

3.  There will be a new button that will really try to convince you to go and VOTE assuming that The Reluctant Mom is shortlisted – this will go on until 15 December 2013.

4.  There will be several days of checking and re-checking my email and hoping that I get somewhere in the Top 3.

5.  Then it is finished.  Everyone takes their bow, there is a bit of air kissing, and a fair amount of “shit, I lost, but hey the winner blogs are really fantastic” …. oh I am so honoured just to be on the short list.

6.  Everyone goes home eats too much cake and drinks too much wine!

 

Kids who are picky eaters …. I think I am a bit out to lunch on this issue ….

Calvin

I recently attended a workshop that was hosted by Pediasure about “Picky Eaters….”

Going in to this I really felt like I was being made to sit through 45 minutes of a round-about talk, so that in the end I could be told why a product is so good, and then in turn I would have to tell you.

I am deeply suspicious of anyone trying to sell me anything.

I have a bit of a “shit alert” radar that goes off when ever I see a sales person walking towards me or a pretty yet inappropriately dressed woman in the local Pick ‘n Pay wearing a bright KNORR banner and asking me what I am going to be making for dinner.

I may appear hostile in the wine aisle as someone leans over to ask me if I need any assistance making my wine choice this afternoon.

Clearly she has no idea who I am and how much time and effort I have spent in choosing screw top wine over the years.

I feel I know me, and I feel that I can choose to use a product or not without the hard sell that is usually associated with it.

I approached this workshop with the same mild disdain and “concern” and sensitivity to the fact that at the end there will be a big “reveal” of a product that will solve the problem of picky/fussy eaters – and my guess is it was not going to be parenting classes.

The only reason I went along was because Stilletto Mom was going, and I figured a workshop was a good way to spend a quality two hours together.

We arrived a bit late –  my fault.  I kept arguing with my GARMIN – and ignoring it, and then we were late.

The location was the Deer Park Cafe.

Nice location, nice food – probably not the best for a workshop.  There were other people sitting there with kids, and kids just don’t understand they need to be quiet whilst a work shop is going on.  So they tend to keep getting up going over to the door that leads to the play area and either standing there going “mmmmmmmmuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuummmmmmmmmmmiiiiiiiiiiiiieeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee” or leaving the door open – which slams or the tired looking mummy has to come over and close it.

Repeat a few dozen times and it starts to get a bit tiresome.

Tricky to pay attention when all the little bits of “annoying standard restaurant” stuff is going on.   I sat there and dutifully paid attention.  I really did.

The workshop was being hosted and the “discussion” was about “picky eaters.”

The problem is I kept waiting for the “sell” …….

Withstanding all the scientific experience and the frequent amount of mommy-hand-wringing associated with this topic I do have a few thoughts on it.

I think these may well be some of the reason for Picky/Fussy Eaters:

1.  Parents are afraid to say no.  

I think when junior throws a shit fit that they are not going to eat tomatoes, fish, anything white, anything that belongs to the pork family – then parents stand there and the easiest thing to do after your are exhausted and you really do not care what they eat, as long as they shovel it in, and go bath, go to bed, and hopefully have sufficient sustained nutrition to survive the next 24 hours.

In a panic the easiest thing to do is whip away the meal, and pass your kid the stuff you know they are going to eat. Repeat this a few times, and kids pretty much realise that if they just refuse to eat what ever you are presenting to them, they can “teach you” to give them what they want.

2.  Parents tend to be okay with meal times being a democracy.

I am all for kids feeling a bit empowered, and being able to put up a fairly good argument about pretty much anything.  I do think that too few parents are just not up for the challenge, and it is easier to have your child win the negotiations and then give him or her what ever she appears to be screaming about.

3.  There is way way too much discussion and a bit too little “you are the child, I am the adult, here is your food, eat it or go to bed – sorry no negotiation”

4.  Moms seem to be okay with the idea of chasing a child around the the room with a spoon trying to shovel something in.

Personally if I could continue reading my book, climbing the curtain whilst the “responsible” person ran around with a spoon trying to shovel rice and gravy into my pie hole, I think that would be far more interesting than sitting on a chair and feeding myself.

5.  In many cases (not all) in many cases the issue is that the child is actually not a picky eater, but wants to exert his or her dominance. The mom (or dad) are unable to deal with it on that level, so it becomes a “picky food issue” when the reality is that it is not a picky food issue but actually a behavioral issue.

6.  Kids are seldom picky/fussy eaters when they are at a party and there is as much chips, cake and junk food as they can breath in.

I do think there are children/people who for what ever reason do require a meal supplement or a vitamin.  But, and here is my but, it should be for a period of time or whilst the child is ill, or there might be an issue that is health related that needs to be resolved.

A child that is allergic to a food that makes their windpipe close and their tongue swell clearly should not have that food and this can be excluded from their diet.

Short of that it often comes down to who ever is going to win the supper hour fight that exists in every single home where there are children and parents and people trying to get kids to eat food.

I could easily label any of my three as fussy eaters – instead I opt to go with the rule “its on your plate eat it!”

I realise that Connor might like tomatoes less than Georgia, or Isabelle is not a big fan of meat, and so on – but they all get the same meal, and some days it is all the stuff Connor likes, and well some days it isn’t.

That is the way the cookie breaks guys – suck it up, eat, and get a move on.

I {personally} believe that if your child eats a balanced diet then they do not need meal supplements, milk supplements, vitamin supplements and the like.

I think there is a great deal of “sell” on retailers shelves, in mommy magazines about why you MUST include a supplement.

The advertisements seem to play on “moms and being able to meet all their child’s needs” – and again if you don’t give them supplement ABC then you are not letting them be all they can be.

Or what ever the tag line is.

If your child is not eating a balance diet – then adding something in as a supplement or a vitamin is not correcting the issue.  You are merely throwing a band aid at the problem, and not addressing why your child is not eating a balance diet.

All kids are natural manipulators.

All kids will always try to push a situation to their benefit – no matter how detrimental it appears at the outset.

All kids, once they realise they are able to get their own way in a situation, will learn that they will always be able to get their own way if they just continue to resist for long enough.  They know you will give in.  The question is just when.

That is my theory.

Not scientific, just my theory.

I was presented with a Pediasure hamper – and I have not used it yet.

There is something and it sits with my resistance to start to give my children supplements when in actual fact they are quite capable of eating a proper meal.

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I do realise I am probably not the ringing endorsement of product advertising that a PR company would hope for.  Sorry about that.

When do I think it is okay to introduce a supplement?  When there is a medical reason that your child is not consuming food – and the supplement is an interim measure for the issue to be resolved.  Your child might be on medication that makes eating a full meal difficult, or your child might be ill, and the result is he or she is not able to eat regular meals and take in sufficient vitamins and minerals.

Your child saying “I don’t want to eat it….” is not a medical reason.

I feel that in many of the issues around “picky eating” is not an aversion to a food, or a food type, it is often a behavioral problem that needs to be addressed – and actually it has nothing to do with food.

I saw this piece of advise on a site recently and I think it should be on a t-shirt somewhere:

NEVER cater to a picky eater, it just prolongs picky eating. If a child says they don’t like a food – keep serving it on a regular basis. Serve what the family enjoys and let the picky eater accommodate to the family’s tastes.

This website contains material for my amusement only.

I thought I would act grownup and put a disclaimer on my sidebar.

I am not sure what a disclaimer is. I assume it means if someone slips on a wet spot in the sanitary napkin aisle, they can’t lodge a complaint nor claim damages.

I wasn’t really paying attending during LA Law circa 1984 so my reference might be a bit sketchy.

If you need clarity on any of these issues, please feel free to raise your hand and let me know what exactly about this blog you find confusing.  I am really a wonderful people person.

I do not post happy pictures of myself and my children.  We are in fact all pretty happy, I just don’t feel an overriding need to rub my happiness in your face.

I really do not in any way give you the illusion that I have a happy, sunny, so fucking happy life.

I am (surprisingly) happy and content and have a great family.

I am beyond in love with many aspects of my existence.  But I see no point in lying to you about how freaking happy we all are — because really who believes that shit?  There are tons of blogs about happy families – how cute the kids are in every damn photograph – and how much the mom and dad are in love.  Sorry, I am not selling that shit over here.

At a glance you may get the impression that this blog is about “real life.”  Much of it spent cleaning dog piss off the toilet (on the side of the toilet, not in the toilet).  Arguing with kids about food, repeating for the 15th time “get in the car NOW I am leaving” …… and the joy does get sucked out of your very soul when you have to explain for the millionth time to any of your children why we are not going to be buying them a cell phone.  And I don’t give a shit who at school has one.

I will happily reverse my car out of my drive way, and hide in the cul-de-sac whilst sitting in my car just so that I can hear the end of a song, or listen to the end of a talk show without my kids.

I take pleasure in the fact that I am a parent.  But I am an adult – and mommy needs me time, and mommy does big people things. I have not stopped being an adult person because I am a mother.  I am a bit alarmed at how mothers stop being people …. and become “only mothers” ,,,,, yeh, not so much over here at Reluctant Mom.

Life does not stop because I have children.

I could not be arsed to put up recipes – you are clearly clearly looking in the incorrect place.

I try to photograph my food.  But really how many times can you get a good instagram of Egg McMuffin and Sausage with a Large Fries for breakfast in a bag, with a large Coke Zero on the side?

If the phrase FUCK. FEK, FREAKING, FREAKN OR WHAT THE FEK/FUCK/FREAK/FREAKING offends you – I need to direct you to the click away button.

If you are hoping motherhood and having children is all soft lighting and designer dribbling – then please go to your neighbour and ask her to smack you hard … with a frying pan.

One outing to Pick ‘n Pay once at the end of the month, shopping with your child(ren),alone should make you realise you are in fact a Nik Nak packet away from leaving your child in the frozen vegetable aisle. And possibly you can’t/won’t/will choose not to judge me so harshly when I have a few of my “moments.”

Whilst at Pick ‘n Pay, until they call you to come and fetch him/her from the Manager’s office – and you sort of dawdle to get there, then you know you have crossed a real threshold in parenting.  It is actually a fantastic babysitting service by the way.  Informal – and you cannot use it every time you go shopping, but now and then seems to be okay.  The kids always go to the Manager’s office, and then a supervisor sits with them whilst they get to play with the Pick ‘n Pay Manager’s stationery.  It really is quite a sweet deal.

I abhor mommy and baby groups.

If you refer to your husband as “hubbie” or your pregnancy as “preggies” – unless you are writing a telegram and paying per letter, use all your letters for goodness sake, speak English like a grown up.

I am pro-breastfeeding.

I am pro-bottle-feeding, I am pro-formula.

I am pro many things, and at the same time I will judge you if you put your child in a cut off sleeve vest.  Every time!

So here’s the sign above the imaginary door.  There will not be a test later, so feel free to glance over it.  Or not.

This website contains material for my amusement only.

This is the part where I tell you to be kind to animals, to help little old ladies across the road, and just give other moms who are having a kak day a bit of a gap from the insistent need to offer them advise on how to control their child losing his/her shit in the bread aisle at Woolworths.

My stuff here is {mostly} my own thoughts – and I do not amend my speech to adjust to your map of the world, or an advertiser or in a bid to make money from my blog.

I think that ship has already sailed.

Some days I am really proud of shit I say, some days I am embarrassed – some days I have no recall of what happened yesterday.

This site may contain personal misinformation or stuff written for stuff sake. A fair deal of swearing, and moaning goes on here.

Activities and parenting advise appearing or described on this site may be potentially dangerous.

Blink if you accept the above conditions.

Copyright © Celeste Barlow/Reluctant Mom Blog 2009 -2013 All rights reserved.

Fucking hell … no that is all ….. how stupid are people?

I am sorry to cut and paste things – but sometimes there is just no other option.  And I do not want to link to the post in case you are too shit arsed lazy to follow the link.

Today, I have been further amazed at how stupid the common person is.

How on earth did we manage to multiply and take over the planet when we have people who exhibit this level of IQ, common sense and inability to spell in our gene pool.

I am starting to feel quite strongly about asking the government to institute an IQ test before people are allowed to breed – via what ever method they have access to.

Self Righteous, Ignorant & Judgemental Mommy “Support”

I was tagged in a post today on FB, another “mom’s support” group, although, I have to say, I’m not sure that there was much “support” going on in this particular post. Just a whole lot of judgement, self righteousness and ignorance. Anyway, the reason I was tagged was to offer some advice to a pregnant mom who wanted to place her baby for adoption. I’ve copied and pasted some of the unbelievable ignorant, stupid, self righteous and down right judgmental comments below:

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Here is the original message:

Anon:
Please ladies do NOT Judge.

I’m about 4months pregnant, unplanned and unwanted pregnancy.. I do have a child and love my child to bits, I’m just not ready for another one.. I’m tired of pretending to be happy about it when all it does is make me moody and nasty towards others.. I could not abort so I want to give this child up for adoption… How do I go about it and can I do it without the biological father’s permission?

  • Your child will have a brother or sister. A friend for life. Try to see it from your child’s eyes in a few years time and how it could be. Don’t make a hasty decision.

Um… DOH! Adopted children have brothers and sisters too, or perhaps you’re one of those who are so hung up on genetics you can’t see it any other way. 

  •  don’t make a decision in haste. if u really interested in giving the child up I know some1 that will gladly take it and gv it vrything it needs for a blissful life.

The “it” you refer to is NOT a hamster or puppy. It’s a CHILD! Who are you to judge who qualifies as a suitable adoptive parent???

  • If you are serious about adoption please let me know, I know someone who would give the baby a great life.

Again, who qualified you as a social worker to determine who would make suitable adoptive parents? 

  • When you see that baby you’ll fall in love. Don’t make a decision until you are 100% certain. How will that kid feel when he finds out he was put up for adoption but you kept his sibling.

So missing the point. This is not about siblings, this anon mom is issuing a crying for help, she is trying to what is best for EVERYONE in the situation.And really, way to go simplifying such a deeply complex situation. 

  • You will never be financially ready ….once you waited to long you will be old for a second child ….its also selfish know your child has a brother or sister and you want to give it up ….pls dont …you will regret and when your lo finds our when they older they will never forgive you ….you cant just think of yourself….think of your child that you love so much

You must be an idealist who lives in lala land believing all a child needs is love. Seriously, children cost money and for some of us (perhaps I shouldn’t include myself in this group as you probably don’t see me as a “real”mother either given my barren womb) providing for our children is of the utmost importance. We consider things like the cost of a good education, medical care, child care, etc etc etc. You don’t know the state of this anon mom’s finances, so don’t be so flip about her concerns. And again, I think this anon mom is very brave, I don’t believe she’s only thinking of herself but her whole family, including her unborn child. 

  •  Pray!!! God will not afford u a child if He cannot put in place any help…U dnt know what is God’s plan 4 this baby.Maybe this child is supposed 2 be there 4 the other 1.They might need one another more in later years.Do u want ur child 2 be all alone when God forbid something happens 2 u….@ least they wil have each other…kids are a blessing & plz wait a while!

Adopted children are blessings too, in ways you could clearly NEVER understand. And pray, oh my favorite, pray. If I had a $ for every time somebody told me to pray when I was going through my infertility. No matter your faith, surely we are all adult enough to realize that sometimes our prayers are answered and the answer is no! Perhaps adoption IS the answer to anon mom’s prayer?  We don’t live in a fairy tale, shitty things happen in life but how we cope and the choices we make with the hand we’re dealt is what counts. 

  • I always thank God for the mum I was blessed with. For I could have been born to someone who felt I should be given away or worse, aborted………sad how the new generation thinks.

Self righteous bitch! Adopted children ARE NOT given away! You clearly HAVE NO CLUE!

  • How about you just give the baby TO the biological father? I mean really.

Again, seriously! This is NOT a puppy, this is a child! Not to be “given” from one person to the next! And again, there could be a million and one different reasons why just “giving” the baby to the biological father is not a possibility! 

  • Some women spend so many years trying to conceive ( knowing they can provide a good, loving home) and some die never knowing what if feels like to carry a new life inside of them. And then we get women who don’t even feel remotely excited about being pregnant, life is such I presume! adoption is an easy way out and should only be implemented when the natural parents die, my opinion anyway … whatever you decide, I pray your unborn child ( which didn’t ask to be born by the way!) never feels unwanted or unloved

Yes, I am one of THOSE women you refer to, poor little me, I will die never knowing what it feels like to carry a child inside of me and yet I am still blessed beyond your narrow mindedness! Adopted children, while they may experience a certain about of rejection when they are older and understand the concept of adoption, when placed in a loving, suitable, properly screened and approved family WILL NOT grow up feeling unloved. And most importantly IDIOT, adoption is HARDLY the easy way out, adoption is love. Adoption is about putting the wants, needs, hopes and dreams of your unborn child before your own. It’s about making a life long commitment to sadness and to feelings of loss and grief! It is HARDLY easy. I’m quite sure both my children’s biological mothers would agree with me and be shocked at your careless thought that its the easy way out!  Oh and just to add, thanks for your opinion, but if your opinion were law, then women like me would NEVER experience motherhood, and beautiful families like mine would never exist. 

I’m just reminded over and over again that we live in a society where the large % of people will never know or understand my family. Where some people are so obsessed with genetics that they can NEVER truly know love. How sad for them. But how dare they put their issues onto a scared, sad pregnant woman who is looking for help!

You can read the full thread here.

if you want to go along and post a comment on Sharon’s blog – please link through to Blessed Barrenness and feel free to leave your rant, or tell her she is over reacting.

Please do not tell me these comments are done with the best intentions.

Best intentions circumcise boys with unhygienic instruments and then make them wander around in the bush for 30 days.

Best intentions came up with burning heretics.

Best intentions gave rise to that little “jewish” problem.

Seriously, best intentions do not mean you can be a total toss.  Or knob!

And people wonder why I say FK so much!!  Fucking hell.