Thursday, January 31, 2008


Today, I:

• was mesmerised by a woman for nigh on six hours as she presented a course I took - her blinking eyelashes fell against her fringe. Much like a Schnauzer;
• got fed up with my own idleness and inaction;
• added another tool to my belt;
• took my husband's generosity for granted and don't think I have thanked him appropriately enough (because I'm too defensive);
• drove white-knuckled through torrential rain surrounded by trucks on a country freeway in a 110km/h zone;
• learned that I can feel the washing machine through my desk (two rooms away) when it's on its spin cycle;
• missed the LGBB so much I couldn't wait to get home (was away for 13 - what seemed like very long - hours);
• drank too much coffee flavoured milk (but that can happen on any given day);
• weeded the path of my future just a bit more.
• realised I have to prioritise my 'me' time much more efficiently if I am to be of any ongoing use to society;

And on that note, I bid the day a hearty goodnight (wow, before 9.30pm!!)

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

So a priest, a nun and a shepherd go into a bar...

It's about as good an opener as I can do today. Ain't no jokes this week.

Am on the precipice of slipping back into old habits (of feeling like a tonne of bricks is on me and I can't shift it no matter what I do, there's always bricks to be shoved) I had at the last place and I don't want to be in that space again. I need organisation. I need inspiration. I need.... Grease Lightnin'. Okay, maybe not the latter. But surely one of you reader(s) knows what I mean?

Work is piling up and I only just started back last week for another year. The business is chugging away nicely, year-long, and I get all flustered when any unusual amount of work comes flooding in. Then I stepped back and looked at just why that might be - aside from the fact that I have always seen any work under the business name as pertaining to Ella (and then it goes without saying that I look on it as the replacement for physically 'raising' her), my clients seem to have an uncanny knack of piggy-backing their big site overhauls or yearly stationery orders or whatever else it's time for. So it's no wonder I feel snowed (but not all the time) with it. If only it would space out. But it doesn't.

It wasn't like this to begin with. In the first year, I had a steady amount of work and it was ace. Now, four years later (wow! our little venture is four in March!) and I can see there are great slabs of work - renewals and the likes - in various months, as if they are our hot-months that will need quite some co-ordination particularly now Lolly is here, and then other months where there's nothing much doing. In terms of the yearly/regular requirements, that is.

So I've just hit a surprisingly busy January, is all. And I've felt it more keenly because we only moved in here not two weeks ago.

Add to all this that last week was a rather hair-raising one for the LGBB. On Tuesday, she came down with a mysterious skin reaction to "something" - the doctor saw the welts, they were all appearing and morphing and merging and then shrinking, in her hot spots (forehead, cheeks, hips, shoulders and top of arms) - so after a dose of Claratyne it all appeared to be gone by next morning. Wednesday night, she was off her food. In fact, didn't eat at all. Managed to give her some fruit and yoghurt after her bath and before bed, so I didn't feel so bad sending her to bed when she hadn't eaten.

By Friday, she had had only a handful of sultanas, a bit more yoghurt and a sandwich for lunch on Thursday - no dinner at all, not interested in breakfast or any snacks - and she'd slept overnight for 15 hours. I woke her at 10.30 because I couldn't stand the rising doubt in my mind that something was up. To cut a long(er) story short, she ended up in the local A&E after not being able to sit up - she fell twice, was so lethargic and listless, wouldn't properly wake up and was virtually non-responsive, just laying wherever I put her, very pale and sleepy and not communicating with me at all. After seven hours there, a failed urine sample (damn, those bags are so useless), three more hours' sleep and a blood test that turned up no more than some dehydration and a slightly elevated white cell count, all of a sudden our limp wan little BB wanted to sit up, turned very pointedly to her Dad and said "HI...Dad" and then to me, "HI, Mummy". We didn't quite know what to say, other than a quiet thank God to each other over her head. She then went on to sit there virtually haggle all the passers by - "hi peepool" - and called her doctor a "noose" (nurse).

Bit of a mystery, to say the least. A follow-up appointment with her doctor today confirmed that she's probably had some sort of virus pass through her system. But the lack of any obvious signs - like a temperature or any signs of fever, infection, coughing, any of that - is dubious. On Saturday, she had a full day of the runs. Sorry to anyone eating while reading. But they went as suddenly as they came on. She seems to be pretty much back to her normal self today, aside from bags under her eyes that have been there for a week now. Oh and I'm not allowed more than a metre out of her reach just for the time being. Most draining. Especially when I can't get anything else done. Unless Play School is on (hence this update and grab of time for myself today).

To rule out a UTI, I have to try and collect another sample from her - today, so far has proven a write-off and now the place is closed - and we have a referral to a Paed because we also cannot rule out some sort of seizure apparently, because of the lack of any observations that were usual for a viral or gastric "thing".

Anywho... I am remaining just ahead of the crest of the crashing wave. Getting good at this surfing thing. Feel guilty and/or exhausted from quite possibly overly worrying. When I talked it over with Steve, he said "well, the world will just have to get used to it - we are always going to be overly cautious and careful about these sorts of things now." Makes sense when he says it. But when I feel or think it, I just come to the conclusion that I sound like I'm complaining about my "lot" and that's not it at all.

I was thinking on all this as things getting in the way. In the way of what though? Life. But I see now, after going back over this post, life can't "get in the way" of itself. That, dear reader, would be a vicious circle. This is not that. This is life. And so it only depends how you look on it.

Ok! *emphatic head nod* Point taken.

Monday, January 28, 2008

I don't know if we can be friends anymore

The results of the latest poll are in.

71% of you prefer the inside piece of a cake.....

That's too many people to do a hand wrestle. So we'll have to work something out here. Or never meet. Or if we meet, never share a cake.

Because I can't have any of those corner edge bits. Just can't.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Do you clean your computer screen?

Been trying to find the right thing to clean the LCD.

HAVE to get onto getting me one of these.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

How do I get into these situations?

I got roped in before I saw it coming. D'oh! *smacks forehead with flat palm*

Got an email from a girl from playgroup that seemed like I'd been joined in in the middle of a bunch of correspondence I should already know about, extending the invitation for me to come to a party-plan (toys and books I think) sesh at her place. I was a bit taken aback by not even getting any lead-up or "hey haven't seen you in yonks", having not heard from or seen her in months. I have been missing going to actual mothers' group - the LGBB has informed me in her decidedly displeased fashion that she doesn't care for the children there and quite frankly, isn't even happy for me to go along for the social stimulation. And she lets me know it. So we haven't been going. I've been catching up from time to time with a couple of the girls, but as far as the whole meeting once a week big group thing with the kids goes, I've been out of that loop for ages now.

So I thought, despite the lack of touchy-feely "we should catch up" in the email, why not, I've been invited along and it sounds like a few of the others are going to be there.

Little did I know that this is not a one-off and in fact this girl has decided not to return to work, instead making a go of these parties full time. I mean.... more power to her and I really hope it works out. But uh... eugh.... ummmm??

Look, no offense to anyone who does this on the side, up high, down low too slow, but it's just not for me. Apparently there has been another of these nights already and a couple of the others in particular felt quite pushed into having parties of their own (I think both respectfully declined). I don't know her all too well, haven't heard from her in ages and from the get-go the communication seemed really heavy-handed (but I put it down to just me being sensitive!) and now I know why, after hearing today what the consistency of the correspondence has been like.

I feel uncomfortable about it. But I'll go. I'm too much of a push-over to reply back now and say I'm not coming. And besides, today at lunch Nat virtually clung to my calf and told me I was coming "or else". So I can't let the safety in numbers rule down either now. But ungh... the pressure to buy - and apparently this stuff is really expensive - will be great. Fair enough if it's the best-selling floor cleaner you've ever come across. But we're talking books and toys, both of which we are not in short supply of here already.

Oh I detest situations like this. Shoulda seen it coming but I just put my hand up and said "yeah why not" as enthusiastically as Jazz would've. Hey... maybe I could take the dog along. That'd certainly make it an early night *strokes hairs on chin thoughtfully* She'd love to go, I'm sure. Meet new people, sample the food, that sort of thing.

Have any of you been in a position where someone in your social circle has started something up like this? How uncomfortable (or handy) was it? Discuss.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008


We have officially landed at the new house. Point form is required.

1. Mouse, meet new occupant, new occupant, meet mouse. Or if preferred, utter a gutteral yelp while proclaiming to husband that "we never had to put up with any of this shit at the old place" in a moment of panic about what you've gotten yourself into.

2. First day here, I thought it'd be joyous to throw a ball to the girls in their new spacious backyard. Said backyard has two small citrus trees in the middle of it, down the back but essentially in the middle of the grassed area they can run in. What does Old Pep do? Full of gusto (and hellbent on playing keeping-off with Jazz), she sets out after the ball and in her determination to herd Miss Mena from it, looks down and smacks her head square into the lemon tree at full pelt. Out of the entire expanse of grass, she managed to clock one of just two tree trunks to be navigated. I heard the crack from metres away and promptly cringed. My urge to giggle at her stupidity quickly turned to horror as my dear old girl then took a stagger sideways and fell to her bum. She slumped into a lying position and I raced over, calling her. After a moment she did get up and walk over to meet me. But it was a walk. And she didn't bring her ball. Oh deary me. The day is nearing, I'm afraid (she is fifteen, after all, but I do hope she gets some days, weeks, months, even a year to enjoy here after the tiny cooped-up backyard she's been used to for the past ten years).

3. Fresh carpets, half the floorboards laid (made of bamboo! Bamboo floorboards, highly sustainable, harder wearing than timber.... who the hell knew?), the wall we wanted down is completely finished, patched in another door we didn't want or need. We've done stacks in the first month. Far more than I'd hoped we would have done before we moved in.

4. Yet I still cannot shake the niggling doubts that we have made a rather hasty move. Honestly, I am still in a head-spin. Feels like just a week ago, I was sitting in the living room of my home, everything in its place, garden finished, everything done. Not a thing to do. Hmmm... yes, ok. Am starting to recall the feeling of being stifled there: the neighbours who you could just feel watching you through the curtains (and then have it confirmed when someone else in the street would say something). Ick. Yes, it was time to move from there.

5. Note to self: masonite board should not, I repeat NOT, be saturated with a mop. It has a tendency to seep under the attractive linoleum and make the floor rather lumpy underfoot.
In one fell swoop, I managed to produce a horrible-feeling floor and more work for Steve when it comes time to laying the floorboards through the kitchen (so help me, that new kitchen cannot come fast enough - there are a couple of cupboards in this one that I can't even bring myself to clean... so the doors will just remain closed. With police tape over them.). He now has to most likely replace the ocean waves I've inadvertently created in the subfloor. Oh. Whoops. I swear, all I did was try to clean while he and the LGBB had ducked out for moment. I mopped the plaster dust so it would be nice and clean for Lolly to crawl about. A moment later, after stepping back into the room, I noticed a real strong "woody" smell. Got down, sniffed the floor. It was the masonite sheeting that is waiting for the floorboards to go atop. Still, it dried okay or seemed to. Then, standing that night over in the kitchen, I stated that the floor there felt decidedly more "lumpy", rather "crap". "This is lumpy and crap," I believe I said, for I can be quite the stroppy little shit if I am out of my comfort zone. And Steve confirmed then that, yes, masonite probably shouldn't be allowed to get too wet. Well, just what exactly is too wet? Four Weddings and a Funeral wet or Alice getting dunked in the Brady kids' dunking booth wet?

6. Separation anxiety to old house reaching feverpitch. Have not given this place a good chance to welcome me properly yet, we've been so busy. It'll come. It will all work out as it should. For now, the melancholia can be eased with a good coffee and ... more painting out of the insane wall to wall spearmint green old colour scheme.

7. Watched the moonrise over the hill last night. I guessed we would be able to see it, as we used to see it from our old place but it rose on the service side of the house. Here, you can see the hill from all the living areas. Stunning, the moon. Just mesmerising (heh... I am a moon baby, after all!).

8. The LGBB has no flies on her. She knows we can't convince her that her new room is even similar to her old one. For starters, it's L-shaped. That's a first. Second, (did I tell you?) she has an ensuite*. If you don't mind. And third, since when was Angel by the door? Everybody knowwwws she hangs out under the ceiling fan. But not here. For the first night, not everything was right in Lolly's world. We thought she would be okay, with most of her familiar things around her. But she freaked right out once it was lights-out time. I wandered back in and had a chat to her, like I used to when she was just a little brand new bubba in her huuuuge cot, telling her this was her "new safe room" and that all her friends, even the ones she couldn't see, were all there making her safe and comfortable. Told her where Mummy and Daddy would be and that she could call us whenever she needed to. She seemed satisfied with that and by the time I got back up to the kitchen, we saw her on the monitor having a chat to Scraps. She drifted off not long after. I missed that one: I could have saved her a freak-out perhaps. But it was very validating to know that it's not a trick, the method of treating them respectfully and letting them know what's going on. I completely forgot that it doesn't just take a lick of paint and the same curtains (I couldn't part with them, they're the ones I made for Ella so we took them and brought them here to hang) to make a child comfortable.

9. Cockatoos are funny buggers. We have one (is it the same one, though, for they all look the same) who routinely comes and hangs out on the security screen door and peers inside. First one eye, then turns his head and peers in with the other eye. Classic. Mind you, if you hate birds, especially big ones, you may just wee your pants reading this. Sorry.

* We're undecided whether it will stay (the toilet will, that's a given) because the back end of it juts into a sitting room/kitchenette that is really an extension of her bedroom and which she is already most comfortable playing in. Imagine a granny flat under the roofline of the main old cottage part of the house. That back wing, it's all hers. There is another spare room, quite a comfy little nook, but apart from that she has the run - or the crawl - of it. The family thinks it's quite humourous that such a wee person is all set up like any nagging sixteen year-old could only dream of.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

I'm getting all the symptoms.

Sweaty forehead.

Throbbing temples.

Double checking dates on the calendar ... it couldn't be ...

Palms clammy.

Quickened pulse.

Slight waves of nausea and feeling out of control.

But it's true, it's happened, just as planned ...

Our Foxtel's been disconnected.

Monday, January 14, 2008

I promise, I'm not some weird stalker

You know what's just occurred to me? I'm sitting here clearing out my desk drawers and packing them to move across.

Just came across some dusty old photo albums and was giggling at the things I thought so interesting as a kid to photograph (so interesting that they have pride of place in an album, no less). Among them were the back verandah of the home where I grew up, a succession of childhood dogs, Christmas trees through the years (my mother was nothing if not an excellent draper of the tinsel), my first bedroom and so forth.

Then, the subjects of the albums sort of turned into more people than familiar things of mine. And what struck me most was the number of young children who obviously captured my heart soooo much that I had to take their photo. At least a dozen if not more, and this doesn't include neices and nephews who came along a tad later. All were images of children who I cared for in my high school years - yes, yes, and with parents' permission to take the photos! - and although I cannot remember most of their names, their dear wee faces are so familiar. Grinning ear to ear, all of them, bless their little souls.

I recall moments with them all. Ben, who I'd push on a swing (I loved 'swing duty' at the child care centre where I worked after school, such an ace time to hear their baby conversations) and told me once that he knew Meister Jackston, that in fact "I know him every day" - I do believe he was meaning to say Michael Jackson (and uh, I'm pretty certain and relieved he didn't "know" him every day if you catch my drift). Little Nicky, the dearest little 2.5 year old who formed a crush on me and would hold on to go to the toilet til I took him - I had no concept before him that a willy ready to "go" on a little boy actually spurted up. But it did. And I could have wept with love for this little bloke the day I didn't "point it down" fast enough, he was busting and I caused him to, as he put it tragically, "wet me dacks". Then there were the two young children of a newly divorced mum who I befriended in the town where I used to go and visit my interstate teenage love interest - what my mother was thinking, allowing me to travel on my own at 16 every few weeks for the better part of year 11 I do not know, but anywho. And I recall them putting on a Michael Jackson (what IS it with that guy, must be great music for the littlins, huh?) concert for me, perfecting their routine to Black Or White and replaying the *friggen awful if you ask me* song over and over and over, but there I was nodding of head and clapping of hand, encouraging them and hoping to heaven that they would grow tired or their mum would call them to dinner or bed or bath or something (please oh please, show some mercy) soon.

All great times.

I just loved all these kids. And I'd forgotten all about them! Well obviously I had not forgotten them completely because I would have recognised them anywhere - er, that is, if they were still 2, 3, 7, 11, whatever, and hadn't aged a day in the past fifteen or so years.... But my point is, it was really poignant seeing for myself how much children obviously meant to me. I've always tried to convey it, here in my blog, on the occasions when I've mentioned it. And now I have the confirmation for myself (for it was starting to feel like a blur, almost a concoction of my mind, this past connection with others' children before I had my daughters).

What a beautiful gift I've just allowed myself to receive. Was honestly just dumping and throwing out and boxing things before I had the presence of mind to open one of the nondescript covers. I'm so glad I did.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Images of today

Today was lovely. We started off with breakfast out, just the three (four??) of us at a fave haunt. Thoroughly immersed in watching the LGBB and wondering was it just us being tender with her or was she being even more sweet than usual.

I started out with a lump in my throat and tears just threatening to leap out. Text messages and a couple of short loving phone calls from dearest friends pushed me to the brink (due to the kind and caring, not just for us but mainly for our girl) and one in particular came right when I was marvelling that I had never, in all the times we've been to this restaurant and were familiar with their rather limited play lists, heard Jeff Buckley's Last Goodbye. I find it such a haunting song, really beautiful. And it, along with receiving a really gorgeous honest message, was my undoing. I haven't cried in public for Ella in a long while. It's really crazy, and I'd kind of forgotten, just how even a love song can seem so very fitting as a song to cry for your baby to. But I guess, it's all about yearning really in the end, isn't it? Right but also .... not exactly fitting. Just fitting enough to bring the tears to the fore (what any good song should do):

This is our last goodbye
I hate to feel the love between us die
But it's over
Just hear this before I go
You gave me more to live for
More than you'll ever know
This is our last embrace
Must I dream and always see your face?
Why can't we overcome this and more?
Baby, maybe its 'cause you didn't know me at all
Kiss me, please kiss me
But kiss me out of desire, babe, not consolation
Oh, you know it makes me so angry
'Cause I know that in time, I'll only make you cry
this is our last goodbye
Did you say, "No, this can't happen to me"
Did you rush to the phone to call
Was there a voice unkind in the back of your mind
Saying maybe you didn't know him at all
Well, the bells out in the church tower chime
Burning clues into this heart of mine
Thinking so hard on her soft eyes
And the memories offer signs that it's over

But my tears were short. For there was Lolly, eating the crayons and 'colouring in' nothing in particular on the picture she'd been given by the waitress. Ahhhh, back to reality. For this is my reality for now.

Later on in the day, we met up with the LGBB's aunt and uncle. They arrived with a beautiful native plant (a grevillea) for us to commemorate Ella's fourth birthday. There is nothing quite like seeing your family enjoy your baby, I have decided/discovered. Just pure, lost-in-the-moment joy of each others' company.

Today more than any, I noticed the fun my brother and SIL had just being with the LGBB. Of course, it gave Daddy good leverage ("Come for the company, stay and assist me to lay the flooring")... Just kidding. It had been prearranged that we needed to get this done and there's nothing quite like things all coming together far sooner than you'd hoped but converging on an important day is there? So it was lovely to have them over as an excuse to a) see them and b) inch just a tad closer to fixing the kiddy unsafe bomb site which is the home we are moving to in five short days *gulp*

The years celebrating and honouring what today means for Steve and I (and increasingly as the years go on, obviously Lolly too) are beginning to take shape. One thing that has remained consistent so far, though, is the lead-up being far harder to ride than the actual day itself. So I get to today and I can joke, I can be 'normal' (for what it's worth), I can even catch myself by surprise realising I hadn't thought about Ella for the past half hour *that I am aware of* My energy was even, I wasn't sad. I feel exhausted, though, and perhaps this is a taste of future birthday anniversaries - a day where I'm not flooded with tears, not overly upset that people close to me either have forgotten altogether or at least been remiss in mentioning they were thinking of her (for it is not me/us I want them to think of, it is her) bar noticing that that's exactly what has happened again, none of the past things I would previously have fretted wasted energy over. Just even. Quiet. Reflective. Confirming to myself that despite what my narky niggly 'voice in the back of my mind' says to me sometimes, I have grown and changed since Ella's last birthday.

It's a nice place to be. It feels like a safe place to be, where I'm headed.

And to anyone who sent emails, cards, messages... I just don't think you can ever really understand how much it means to both Steve and me for you to offer that bit of yourselves in that moment. It's far more than others are capable of. So, THANK YOU. I can't properly repay the gesture but I hope in some small way the care you show is paid forward.

Ms Mushy from Melodrama, signing out *sheepish wave, exit stage left... tripping over cords dorkily, waving*

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Nowhere else to put it

I was busily cleaning up the LGBB's strewn toys after she'd gone to bed with Daddy tonight. Just as I heard Steve come in to the room, the dogs barked and as it had been a tense afternoon I began to mutter a "Shut the &*@K up" at them.

And then I looked up because he kept coming towards me. What? A hug? At this time of day?! But I saw his face, red and wet with tears. And he just collapsed onto me and said he'd told Lolly just now that tomorrow is going to be a special day for her sister Ella the Baby. I asked him what her reaction was. Apparently she just stared wide-eyed, probably trying to understand but not getting anything other than Dad was different tonight. She knows exactly who Ella is, in a line-up of babies she can point her out. I'm so pleased to see that our lovingly nurtured remembrance of her sister, for her, has already begun.

I didn't know what to say. So I just gave a hug in return. What can you say? Hell, I kind of feel like I've even run out of people IRL to share this sort of thing with. So I put it here. At least I can get it out here where, hopefully, it is left. It's just another of those moments that we just have, there's nothing to be done about them, nobody needs to 'fix' anything (for they can't), it just is what it is.

It's sad but it's not desolate anymore. Moments like this bond us, remind me at least that my husband is not a machine, that he is not unfeeling, that he doesn't forget (I was fearful he had, when he booked in some help from family tomorrow - we're laying the new floor in the morning and I didn't want to do any work at the house on Ella's birthday but a distraction for Steve for just a couple of hours is actually right and perfect and good timing, it seems).

So once again, I go to bed anticipating an emotional day tomorrow. And yet, if it's like last year, it will be (while poignant and a quietly reflective, low energy day) quite alright. I will cope. I don't have to remember to breathe in and breathe out anymore, those days have long passed.

But I do have to remember to see Steve in all this. That's the hardest part. Reaching out to each other in our own spaces of deep sadness on anniversaries like tomorrow.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Happy 4th birthday, dear Boo

"I am an onlooker on my daughter's dance, which I made possible because she came through me . . . I'm not a part of her dance. Yet whenever she takes pause and needs someone to talk to, I am there. But that special dance with the child and the future is hers."

Liv Ullman

And just exactly how is it, my darling girl, that the resemblance between you and your little sister grows rather than shrinks the further she gets from her own baby-face days? It warms my heart yet tears at me so much. I am so thankful to have you in my life. And this year for the first time, can truly see the acceptance I have come to - of losing you from our daily physical lives - and all that this entails.

On the 13th, we will take time to pause and reflect, you can be sure of it. Just the three of us.

I am just so very very fortunate to have been given the opportunity to grow from knowing you. My beautiful, beautiful forever baby girl.

All my love,
Your Mummy

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

If it wasn't for Scraps

I feed him...

And taunt him with my sandwich

But seriously, Mummy, Scraps is soooooo darn funny that...

... *snoooooooooooooore*

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

And the mystery spot izzz....

For several months now, the LGBB has been sporting some pretty hefty-looking blisters on her bott. Like full-on, bursting, sometimes bleeding, blisters. Really, really strange. Then all of a sudden, they'll go away, only to come back raging. It flares up and settles down with no noticeable rhyme or reason, sometimes accompanied with a related gut upset - so it's been a bit difficult to manage, you could say.

I've tried various singular and combined methods, ruling out new foods, not enough free-to-air time, the way I wash my cloth nappies. Yada yada yada. Tried homoeopathics, my cure-all of choice. Eventually, the homoeopath admitted defeat with this one and advised me I should just "go and get some bloody anti-biotics", for he loathes them as much as I.

So, tail between legs, we went to the doctor who adamantly announced it was a Staph infection. We left his office, armed with a prescription and the instruction to call back in three days to obtain results of swabs he'd taken - we were to start the meds immediately (the infection was quite acute at this point, in the scheme of it coming and going). I asked what the point of taking the anti-biotics would be if we didn't actually know at this stage whether we were treating what he only *thought* it was. But I was assured that not only was he 99.9% sure it was Staph, that if it wasn't then the a/b's wouldn't be making it "much" worse. Oh. Ok. Goody then? (I think).

So when Steve phoned for the results early last week, it shouldn't have been much of a surprise that the doctor's .1% margin of error won out. She doesn't have a Staph infection. We had to go back again, at which time he looked at the sores again - nothing much had improved, after a week of guzzling this medication which, whilst the LGBB is a "medi" lover since age dot (where her usual homoeopathic pillules, Brauer's teething liquid, etc. etc. is known in this house as "medi"), has been useless. Greaaaat! So not only has she been taking the a/b's which I do so try and avoid (in fact, this is her first course of anything), it's been for the wrong friggen diagnosis!

Doctor now says, sitting in his office and "confused that not Staph, in fact NOTHING, grew from the swabs I took", he believes without a doubt that this is a bacterial infection after all. We leave his office, once again armed with another prescription, this time for an anti-bacterial cream.

Well, the LGBB has had this lathered on her for a week now and there's been some slight improvement, for which I am very relieved. Don't get me wrong, the horrible sores have gone and it is now just a couple of persistent crater-looking spots that were in danger of becoming infected (which those treating her all unanimously said was something they did NOT want to happen - no kidding!). So these have now become, well I guess you could say, dormant. But this is nothing new in the scheme of how we've come to understand this particular whatever-it-is. We've seen them do this before. Our instruction was to use the cream for a week and come back if not "all clear". Well it's not all clear so I guess we go back.... but for what? So he can guess again? Cripes.

So I'm no closer to finding out what it was, in order to treat any recurring bouts again in future. It was a pretty sloppy stab-in-the-dark method of treatment, if you ask me (look, it's not that I don't like doctors, I just think they guess and prescribe sometimes a little too hastily and you could say 'give them a break' on that one, but really.... I've had my share of doctors in my life and since going routinely, or first call, to a homoeopath instead of a doctor, I've been stunned at how powerful this modality is - call me a zealot, dear reader, I don't mind!)

And I guess the LGBB is obviously a lass who will just have various skin "things" in her life, if her first 17 months are anything to go by.

Monday, January 7, 2008

My reputation precedes me

You know, it's not often I get concrete evidence that a stranger has come away from meeting me and is changed even in some small way by our story.

The last time that truly happened was when Ella's longest-running nurse, a really sweet young girl called Jade, ran after me in the halls of the hospital when I had mustered up the nerve to go back to visit (looking heavily pregnant with Lolly by that time) - I was there anyway, for foetal monitoring, such was the LGBB's blasé existence in the womb - and she caught me by surprise and said "I THOUGHT it was you! What happened?" She went on to explain she'd been on days off when Ellanor had passed away and she had always wondered what events led up to her (quite sudden, in the scheme of things) death, for they were not expecting her to die and certainly not on that day.

Well today, an even less likely candidate has left an emotional lump in my throat. I've just dusted off the business card of the tradie who did our electrical wiring for the memorial pond Steve and I built with our bare hands in 2004. This guy came and did the wiring for the pump and lights and he also came back to wire up the new kitchen in December 2005.

I didn't think he'd remember us, but he interrupted me and said he remembered the job well. One thing I do distinctly recall feeling kind of uncomfortable (for him) about was the fact that Ella's nursery was still all set up as it was the day I'd gone into labour. I suppose for some it was bizarre that it remained set up almost two years later. We installed a ceiling fan in our room and one in that nursery/spare room (Steve's and my thoughts were that we had to keep "living the dream", that one day we would be bringing a baby home and seeing as we had no plans to move and nowhere to store all of the furniture even if we had taken it all apart, we may as well keep it set up as it was).

And I do recall my heart skipping a beat after Dean left, when I wandered in to the nursery and saw the post mortem photo of Ella sitting neatly on the bookshelf where I had left it, unable to put it away but unable to look at it in the main part of the house either....

I guess maybe that could make us more memorable than I'd assumed we might otherwise be to a passing tradie.

And when I organised his services again today for some more electrical stuff we need done at the new place, he tentatively asked, "Did you have the baby?" I assured him that, yes, the Bliss Bomb was most definitely in our lives. He sounded relieved, "I wasn't sure if I should ask," he blurted. Mind you, the baby he was asking after was the one we ended up having to terminate at 10 weeks - I had been about 8 weeks pregnant at the time and had thought, seeing as I'd probably not require him for any more electrical type stuff at this place, it was safe enough to sort of "round off" our story and tell him I was expecting again. Given, I mean, that he knew we had lost Ella (hence the pond, the empty nursery, the photo, the weepy housewife, you know all those give-aways).

I guess he'll mentally calculate that I either have the gestational period of an elephant or we lost that bub too. It doesn't really matter. The point is, he remembered us enough to ask the question. And I think that is entirely heartwarming that he cares and was obviously touched. It's lifted my day no end.

Sunday, January 6, 2008

And STEP two, three, four

In the closing days of October last year, the LGBB made her first crawling movements. She was about 15 1/2 months.

A couple of days before Christmas, she discovered her feet were made for walking - but only if Mummy or Daddy held her hands.

And yesterday, after her midday snooze, she seemed to have woken full of determination NOT to move from her spot unless it was to WALK from it! Which was kind of tragic to watch, given the fact that she hasn't actually mastered it yet nor would she let us help her anymore. Oh dear.

So we had our first legitimate-reasoned red-faced frustrated toddler tanty. It was so sad! But so funny. The way she crunched her little body over, fists tight, neck taut, a gutteral wail in her throat, all in the name of doing it herself. She wanted to get over to that ball so badly. But each time she went to stand, she couldn't get her hands off the ground and was stuck in an A-frame position. Whump! Back down to her bum. Angry tears. Then she'd start to crawl to it and throw herself on the ground, as if to say "Nooooo!!! I don't WANNA crawl anymore!"

Looks like Daddy picked a good week to quit going to work (for the holidays). Think I'm going to need some backup.

Saturday, January 5, 2008

Asking the important questions


Why does Alicia Keys look like she has to go to the toilet in that new film clip of hers?

It's strangely mesmerising, watching her writhe around on that lone chair. I'm impressed by her gorgeous eyes and face, that naturally beautiful hair, how she can somehow pull off wearing the most unbecoming off-white skin tight number despite not being a skinny girl - very healthy, she looks*. But why the very staccato mode of "dancing" around her keyboard she appears to have invented?

What is going on with her dancing? I really do think the poor girl needed to have a bathroom break but fear they may not have let her and she was doing take after take all day... until they got a music video that looks for all the world like poor Alicia can't uncross her legs.

She looks mere seconds away from doing a Kelly Pritchard.

* I can channel Yoda now, it seems

Friday, January 4, 2008

Up and down like a bride's nighty

.... as my dear Grandma used to say about anyone who couldn't make up their minds (or was flitting about, up and down, indecisive).

Well, that's me. I'm a bride's nighty. The blog's private, it's not. It's called this, it's called that. You can feed via RSS, you can't.

To my ever-faithful small legion of readers who have been with me (pretty much all of you) from the start, I apologise that I did not see this sooner. But it's only been after a firm sisterly talk with, well, one of you whom I hold most dear, that I see I really am not being responsible. Still! And here I was, thinking that by keeping my nose out of trouble/head in the sand/eye on the prize, I was doing all the right things. But no.

It would appear that a steadily increasing case of writer's block is stifling me. My creativity is at a low point - could be because it's being TRICKED, yes tricked, into thinking its only current outlet is painting (that bloody house, will it ever be finished and painted??? I swear, it was possibly one of the LGBB's first words, painting) - and so, I have actually done the worst thing by shutting off any refreshing newness in closing this down and making it private.

I think I went in the complete wrong direction back a month or so ago. Instead of going private, I think I ought to have gone public. Hmmmmmmmm. And here's me, trying to convince myself of my fledgling, awakening intuitive abilities. Yuh. Uh huh.

It's kind of like, I was on the precipice of stopping it altogether. But like my obsession with iced coffee, it's been with me too long now to just sever the connection. September 2005 I started this thing. It has been an important outlet in my life, I've nurtured it, it's nurtured me. As have you. But suppressing my urge to purge was not what I expected to happen with changing it to a private blog. I'm sorry for messing around (and no, your email addresses have not been sent to any telemarketers, I promised you that before).

So, there you have it. The old one's in the Links at the side there, if you are reading this new blog, are new to it and want to know .... "But what happened before she became bitter and twisted and paranoid?"

It's all there, pretty much.

I have too many very loyal readers who relied previously on RSS feeds to alert them of the latest bit o' drivel. And so, to placate them (as much as anything else, as I do so heartily appreciate their reading), I am switching off the lock-down-shut-down-smack-down mode. And sticking with the new blog, which I do still love. It looks much neater. Probably because it hasn't been sullied yet with my ramblings.

But I'll still be me. Rest assured.

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