Thursday, March 31, 2011

Stymied

Image came from here

Stymied. I wanna be like Hymie (in Control). But I'm currently stumped. I lack my zeal. For anything.

I took a short break this week, didya notice? No, I bet nobody did. I guess I should quickly update that no news is not necessarily good news and that I went to Monday night's information night for the beautiful Heartfelt organisation. I went to their exhibition in the city and stayed for drinks, chips and a breath-taking (literally) presentation from Gavin Blue.

But, alas, I doubt my skills are going to cut it. It seems a piece of paper - or at least, more skills than what I possess - is what they are looking for. I have done all I can; sent in some examples at their request (I felt proud but a bit funny about using my personal photos of Ellanor to prove to somebody that, yes, I can use the tools of my trade and recreate facial features and whatnot, in order to show my talent).

Henyway, perhaps they're just busy. But I've heard nothing back, despite reading an update the next day that two new retouchers had joined up (no... I don't think I am one of them! nothing was formalised and it is a very well-run team). My best guess is they don't need me, so I'm thinking.... I wasn't good enough. And while on the one personal hand I'm gutted, on the other hand no mind! All that matters is a) that I went and offered my help, and b) that my skills have been perfect for me and Steve to see Ella without the heart-tugging reminders of her precarious journey through her short four-week life. And better still, it has allowed me to introduce our second daughter to her deceased sister - something I didn't realise until last weekend that I have gifted the LGBB. I need no further proof that my skills are "good enough" than that.

I want to thank each and every one of you who commented, emailed and .. er, twitterered (tweeted? that sounds better) about this and encouraged me to at least go. Without your support after I made this post, I would have stayed home and kicked myself for not going. Oh how I love to self-flagellate at whim for no real legitimate reason.

At the very least, all I can say is, whoever you know, wherever you are in Australia (if you do live here), please do keep this organisation at the front of your mind. You just never know when you might need to suggest them to someone you know. And they are, indeed, truly exceptional. Trust me on that one. I don't say it lightly.


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So. As that was the start to my week, I have felt somewhat like a slowly deflating balloon ever since. Couple that with the hot topic around the Aussie blogosphere this week about whether you're a Mummy Blogger or not (STOP... my head.... it friggen hurrrrts!), on the back of what was (for me, at least, I still maintain) a wonderful and fun and personally fufilling weekend in Sydney at the Aussie Bloggers' Conference - and I am waning in gusto to do another post right now.

Despite the fact I didn't meet everyone in the room and possibly, therefore, contributed to this general view that is going around about people being snobbish or cliquéy or not letting non-Mummy-bloggers feel welcome (when in reality, I only stuck to the same few people I had already met by the end of the night because I am shy and retiring and get overwhelmed and sensitive towards crowds of energies in a room... and there were many and they were vastly varied!), I'm still so glad I went.

By the end of this very loooong week, I am trying to work out whether all I once saw in my blogging community is actually just a shadow or a farce or whether it was actually truly there (and still is), because WE made it so, collectively. All of us. Even the bloggers who are part of that particular community who aren't actually even mothers!

Put all of that above together and you are left with one sorry mess of a Mummy/Blogger/Wife/Friend/Disgruntled Pet Owner (I won't even BEGIN to bore you with the many ways the animals are giving me the shits) tonight.


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I have actually paused a moment from packing (and putting together the kinder newsletter... oh yeah, there's still a hint of Mummy Blogger in me) to tell you I won't be back til Monday. Ok, Sunday night at the earliest.

You see, Steve, Lolly and I are taking a quick vacation down to the seaside for a little spot of internet-free camping.

I am desperate for the time out. An enforced break from this crazy whirlwind I seem to have whipped myself into.


So, I maintain, I am stymied. I bid you adieu, wish me luck and no rain (or lots of it, depending how much you like us). While I'm gone, I'll see if I can't string together a few more happy post ideas, eh? And a way to get my head around this current feeling of losing my community that I didn't realise was so important to me until it began disbanding.

Consider these my presents to you on my return. Because I sure as hell ain't bringing back any souvenirs. No more room in the car! Who knew you needed to take so much shite camping??

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Heartfelt

I am torn.

I want to attend this information meeting next week. Heartfelt is an organisation I wish we had known about in 2004, when we had a rather shady digital camera that did its best in the Newborn ICU but was all we had and, after all, we were going to have a lifetime to get perfect angles and correct apertures and capture our baby and ourselves in our best light.

Weren't we?

Little did I know that when the only thought going through my mind was "Leave us alone, there'll be time for family photos when we get out of here" when the nurse insisted on taking this photo of us - and making me lift my head and smile when all I wanted to do was keep my eyes on my child because it was so rare to have her outside of that plastic box that was keeping her alive - that nurse actually took our ONLY family photos together. All three of us. Steve, Ellanor and me. She snapped four and it's all we have now.

I wish I knew her name so that I could remember her because she'll never know what she did for us.

I'm smiling but my face says "There'll be plenty of time for happy snaps, go 'way."


It's little wonder that I feel compelled to attend the Heartfelt session when I come across the cute Miffy photo album of carefully placed photos that my husband put together in the weeks after his daughter's death. He made it up to have with him at work - he was still a proud father and he still liked to show people photos as much as I, but it became a chore rather than a proud parental moment when, one by one, people did not want to see photos of our baby with wires and tapes all over her face and body, especially knowing now that it had all been in vain.

It was this that initially prompted me to turn photos of Ella into works of art. I had the hours, after all, so I painstakingly went through and improved many of the 370 photos we have of her. I made all the bruising, the velcro tapes, the needle marks disappear. I improved her skin and it soothed me to see her look like she wasn't in pain or being inflicted with medical procedures to keep her alive.

Dozens of photos retouched like this...







I only wonder now what it would have been like if I'd had professional photos to work with. I've done the best I could with the camera we had. It makes me wonder the results I could come up with for people if I was given their photos taken by Heartfelt photographers. I don't know! Once again, my lack of a piece of paper (for I am self-taught) is messing with my head and self-worth.

And it is this that is the single-handed reason why we now own a proper digital SLR. We went out and bought it as soon as we started IVF. Talk about expecting lightning to strike twice...

On finding the Miffy album yesterday, only minutes after I found out about the Heartfelt information session, the LGBB came up and wanted to see what was inside. We sat down together and from the first page, she shut the album, crying and scared of seeing her sister that way. This was an album of the raw photos. Lolly has only ever been exposed to the ones I have improved. It stung me in my heart a little. I was all at once sad that she couldn't face them - but understood perfectly why she couldn't - and really relieved I had done this to the photos so that she has been able to connect with her sister and not be repelled by all the scary looking stuff on her body.

To be honest, I don't know whether I would be able to help the Heartfelt project. I do know they are after professional photographers (which I am not) and photo retouchers (which I would think I am) and it is actually a service that I have done for a couple of people in the past, but never pursued.

I have many projects on the go at any one time and I wonder if I would be able to commit myself to the time it would take. On the other hand, I ask myself, if I have this skill, how could I not? Are there many other Photoshop artists who are skilled in doing this and willing to give of their time for free and work with this subject matter? I'm not sure. That's why I feel compelled to go.

But I'm also scared to go. I would not be able to live with myself if I committed to helping out and then let anyone down if I couldn't keep up in high demand times.

What to do?


At any rate, I want to spread the word about this network of amazing photographers. You can join their Facebook group, visit their website and follow them on Twitter.

Heartfelt, indeed.



Friday, March 25, 2011

Thank God I Blog

When you pat my dog, Jazz, it's a really satisfying pat. You know like when you pat a horse? A really smacky-good pat? Well. There's something very comforting about giving Jazz a honking great pat. And she loves it. So that's a bonus. She is such a solid dog. If I patted Pepper like that now, she'd wince. She is far too frail for anything more than very gentle movement.

As Pepper slips further into senility (there is surely no further she can go, she is quite past it now), I am coming to really appreciate that little purchase Steve and I made during our first Christmas without Ellanor, in 2004.

Everything is speeding up, not slowing down. Do you feel it?

Jazz was a pup! I must have blinked, for now she is a middle aged dog.


Jazz and Pepper in 2005

And today, wisened old Pep and chunky Jazz the clydesdale


Jazzy was supposed to be an "only child" - Steve's cat, the beloved ginger and white boy we named Rusty - died in early 2005 from skin cancer, when Jazz was about six months old. He was 14. We still miss him very much and talk of him from time to time. Fact: He was 1m long from tip to tail, tall and lanky like his "Dad". He was our original "furbaby". He and Pepper were all we had, during all those years of trying to bring home a baby, and even before that - when we didn't even know what troubles lay ahead.

When we brought Jazzy home, Pepper was already ailing like she was at death's door. Now, she seems to be in a race to outlive the young brown Labrador who's been brushing things off tables around our home with her ridiculous novelty-sized tail since 2004. Pep should be dead. She really should. But something is keeping her here. She gave me the most intense, gracious, unconditional love and connection I could ever imagine an animal was capable of giving. And I am her palliative care nurse now. I owe her.

So here I was this morning, completing the enrolment forms for the LGBB. We've picked a school for next year! I am relieved it's sorted. Once Steve and I took the tour last week, it was a pretty clear winner for us.

As I signed the final page, I suddenly came over very emotional. And as usual, tears followed.

Not happy tears, not sad. Just tears. This is something we missed doing for Ellanor. With Ellanor. Here is our family, all around us, and I don't know what my little girl would look like now. I don't know whether she'd prefer to wear the school uniform dress or the track pants and polo shirt. Would she be chocolate ice cream or strawberry? Would she mercilessly tease Lolly? Would Lolly even exist??

So. The end of another era. I thought, somehow, the outings with the LGBB to local coffee shops (with Scraps, of course - he is such a coffee fiend) were never going to end. That we would be able to share these times with each other whenever we wanted. But I am about to lose her to school. Soon, these moments will be just that: moments in time. A thing of the past. And the thought leaves me quite bereft, for the time being.


"Thmile, Thcrapthy!"


It snuck up on me, this one. This little emotional release that was simmering under the surface.

I reached for the phone to call a dear friend who is forever going to be in the same situation as us with all these milestones. She lost her firstborn, a daughter, mere months after we lost ours. We lost babies in between, around the same time as each other, uncanny as it sounds. She called me after she got pregnant again (with the son who is now about to turn five) and told me she'd had a dream where she was riding a white horse and came to find me in the middle of a beautiful forest. She lifted me up on the horse and we rode it together. Less than four months later, the LGBB found her way to my womb.

I left a blubbery message for my friend this morning, for I was not teary before I rang. But just hearing her voice unbolted the safety valve and I blurted. I won't need to apologise. We have an understanding, she and I. I asked her in the message if she had filled out enrolment forms yet for her son and how she had found the experience. Surely a reason to catch up over a coffee sometime soon.

My little baby has been replaced by a young girl rapidly growing in her independence. Not that I would expect or want anything different for her. I have taught her to be independent. It's how I survived my childhood. One day soon, she won't need me at all. I didn't realise how much I need her to need me, this tall leggy blonde who already at the age of four has a joyous glow and the kind of knock-em-dead natural poise I always wished I'd had. I have the glow... but I don't have any poise, not like her, that's for sure (must get that from her Dad, he is, after all, the one I call Daddy Long-Legs). If she can overcome her shyness, this kid will be more than comfortable on a stage, she is that theatrical it's almost embarrassing at times.

"Life is a Cabaret, old chum"
I guess I just have to stay open and grateful to the times I am sharing with my beautiful daughter. They have become so much more precious and poignant this year already as I realise I'm about to be on my own again.

So it will be back to me and whichever dogs are still alive this time next year. I told my brother last time they visited two years ago that, surely, it would be the last time Pep would be here. I've been telling him that since the year 2000 - no kidding there - so who knows?!

Please, please let there be something solid for me to pat and hug. If Pepper does outlive Jazz, as she is threatening to do, I'm screwed.

The thought quite overwhelms me at times.

Thank God I Blog, that's all I can say. I think I might get that made up on a sticker for my car...



This post is part of FYBF, currently being hosted by Where's My Glow. Thanks Glowless!



Thursday, March 24, 2011

Business as usual

The cat tried to climb the security screen door and got stuck half way up - she may still be there, I still hear maowing. SHUDDUUUUUP.

Pepper is as stinky as ever and now farting loudly at my feet. I can't get away from her. She needs to be right at my side because she gets a bit disoriented/freaked out about where I've gone if she can't see me (we find her asleep in the strangest rooms when she's gone in there to try and find someone and, I dunno, has another attack of the old lady tireds)

And Jazz is being her usual belligerent self.

The LGBB isn't taking a breath when she talks at me and speaks single sentences that are five minutes long. Each.

I had a nice big fight with Steve last night. Over housework.


Yes. All is still facing Sunny Side Up in our Animal House.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Pay no attention to that Blogger behind the curtain... Unofficial ABC Best Of Awards



It was the weekend where every blogger came to meet up and reveal their true identities. Where they wouldn't feel like furtive freaks for taking photos "to put on the Internets" (like this one, above, which I took with my iPhone over my head, a middle-aged couple frowning on)

After months, and for some of us years, of blogging relatively anonymously from behind a curtain computer screen, this was a huge step for many. A time of letting go the fears of whether we'd live up to expectations, of finding out if our blogs were really "all that." They were. They were "all that" and more. It was like going to meet The Wizard for me. Nay, a collection of Wizards. The great and powerful Bloggers of Oz. Bwahahaha. Cheesy, much? A little. A lot. I'm not too big to wear that.

My one truly genuine hope is that, no matter how our community here in Australia grows, we don't ever lose the wonderful supportive vibe that really revealed itself at the weekend.

So. I know everyone is going to be doing a post (or several!) about the conference. Honestly, I could go on... and on... and on (heh, much like I normally manage to do) about the Aussie Bloggers Conference. But I shall leave it to the other more together members of the community to fill you in (if you were unfortunate enough not to go). For want of a better way to honour this huge event, I feel the need to hand out some post-party awards that really ought to be acknowledged.

The conference itself was excellent. But the biggest excitement for me was to put faces and voices to all of these fabulous bloggers I have at various times envied and idolised and laughed with and cried for and.... Ahhh it was just a real soul-filling weekend for me. Truly.

Now, time for bullet points and being succinct (er, well, my version of it anyway):

• By far, this meet up was one of the highlights of my life. Yes, it was that unreal.

• Not sure if I shattered any illusions for anyone, but I do know that never before have I been in a room full of women (and a few men!) from various walks of life and social/domestic situations and felt more included or such a sense of belonging. Ever.

• The ability to tweet unabated - and have the bizarre knowledge that my feed was coming from people in the room *whispers* "The tweets are coming from inside the house..." - especially while still at the table just rendered me strangely liberated. Whoops, I just accidentally typed "liverated". And I could have been that too, there was free alcohol after all.

• I must preface the following by saying it is in no way a comprehensive list of happenings. Nor is it indicative of all the meaningful and memorable meetings I had. I would need a week's worth of posts for it all to filter down. I think I'm still processing just exactly what I got from the weekend, personal and marketing connections happened on a lot of different levels for me.



ABC Awards, the Sunny Side Up version *

Best Memorable Introduction: NomiePT in the lift on Day One. I think the less explanation about that, the better....But it was memorable for both of us. And I just have to apologise to her once again for even opening my mouth....

Faster than a speeding blogger...
Best Message FAILWanderlust slipping a note under the door of the room next to mine, thinking it was mine obviously, in which it thanked the occupant for a wonderful evening and professed her love (and xxx's) before signing off as Wanderlust... You think the guy in that room might have had some explaining to do to his wife the next morning when she found it under their door? Me too.

Best Tweet: When panelists were discussing trolls ever so briefly and defining for the crowd what they actually were:
"I've never had a troll. I wonder if they taste like chicken," by the inimitable Bigwords. I couldn't breathe when I read that, not least of all because of the hilarity that I was reading what she wrote when she was sitting right next to me. It struck me as very amusing that as internet addicts, we were all sitting around typing what we wanted to say instead of just saying it to the person next to us. Tickled my fancy, it did.

I am Bianca's new No. 1 fan. Seriously. Put Bigwords in your blog roll if she's not already there! Bianca is just a joy to spend time with. Although here's a tip - she is really bad to sit next to in a quiet conference room if you're anything like me and can't laugh without being really obvious. My whole face crumples when I laugh, even more when I am attempting to cover up a guffaw. And between her and Naomi from Under The Yard Arm, I was in a bit of a muddle by that mid-afternoon losing-it point.

Best Lunch Buddies:  Diminishing LucySarah from Just Me and Jenny from Jemikaan. Oh what a great conversation we had! Wish it could have gone two hours on its own, but it was back to the conference room before we knew it.

Best D'oh!-able Moment:  Sarah from Just Me. It has to be said that I will forever giggle a little bit when I see her on Twitter now, she who has been chatting to me for months now. And also is well aware of a certain little blog called Sunny Side Up. And that both may or may not be written by someone called... oh, Kirrily perhaps? It's not all her fault that she spent a whole hour at lunch with me before the penny dropped that *whipping away cloak to reveal the mystery* I was one and the same button pusher! Ta-daah! It may have had something to do with my confusing "brand". I am in the process of rectifying that, having learned a thing or two at the weekend.

Best Dressed: The Thai Airways plane I saw at Sydney airport - man, that airbus totally rocked the runway with the purple and gold on her tail. Such a pretty use of colour, accentuated her tail in just the right amounts.  What? Do you really think I am in any way qualified to pass constructive critique on my fellow attendees on their outfits, let alone give a Best Dressed award? I'll leave that to the masterful Nikki from Styling You - it is her domain, after all.

Best Blogger Convert: Dean from reception at the Bayview Blvd (big shout-out, by the way, to the hotel - the well appointed and clean rooms were superb). Dean has decided there must be something in this "blogging thing" and plans to start writing a product review blog. "I think I'll start with Lambourghini test drives," he told me. And that's a direct quote. I wished him luck. Ah, to have the enthusiasm of a newbie.

Lori, Holly, Glowless cutting a rug
Best Use Of A Wall:  That would be the big hunk o' spunk, Glowless, as she held onto the nearest wall to her during her lesson in the ways of the Nutbush from Holly (Homemaker), with Lori from RRSAHM bringing up the rear in a kick-arse, gorgeous dress. They even lined up in order of height.*

Best Lot Left To Be Desired: The airport shuttle bus that never turned up. Just as I was about to ball up into the foetal position, in breezed Diminishing Lucy and Bianca from Bigwords who said that the car they had booked could take me.

"Fancy," I thought. "Phew," I thought. But... their car never turned up either! At last word, he was going to be "another fifteen minutes." And that was when he was already nearly ten minutes late. 

Best Save: The taxi driver, unfussed and relaxed as you like, who turned up within minutes and spared the three of us a meltdown by getting us to the airport in plenty of time for check-in.

Best Re-worded Song of the Night: Michael Jackson was quite ahead of his time, writing that zombie epic song, Twitter. Oh, didn't you know? It was just a "Twitter... Twitter night. You're fighting not to laugh at all the killer. Twitter(er)s toniiiiiight."

And we can thank Naomi from Bigwords, once again, for planting that play of words in our head whenever we hear Thriller from this day forward.

Best Sentimental Favourite: Meeting (my) Kakka ;P from Menopausal Mama. What a delight that was for me. It was like having an aunt or something there, on my side, providing a soft, familiar place to land. Thanks, K, it was such a pleasure x

Best Hen of the Night:  Veronica from Sleepless Nights. Well, technically, I think she was the only hen of the night but that's just splitting hairs. And what a night to be a Hen!

Best Pocket Dynamo:  Hands-down, has to go to Carly Findlay from Tune Into Radio Carly. Wow. Just wowie-wow. This woman absolutely blew me away. I was captivated by her delivery - she was all the right parts of engaging (and how!), deeply moving, unassuming, self confident, funny, gorgeous and extremely eloquent. My tweet during her address to the audience was that she gets it. I mean, really gets it. She encapsulated easily what it means to write, to blog, and how to reach out. And that is... by simply being yourself.

Most Notable Absence (even if only in my not-so-humble, selfish opinion, it has to be said): Okay, so he's not an Aussie (not that that stopped us all adopting a US-based one!), he's not a so-called Daddy blogger but he is a blogger who's a Dad and more than that, he's a blogger I would dearly love to meet one day - Bloggertropolis. Now, if this blogger is not in your RSS reader, do rectify that soon. He might disagree, but myself and at least one other ABC attendee dub him The Gentleman Blogger. Exceedingly encouraging, devout about leaving awesome comments, witty and such an intelligent writer it leaves my head spinning. He is one follower you'd be lucky to have.

Best Roomy:  Tenille from Help!Mum. Of course! She would get this award on the sole basis of affording me the pleasure of not interrupting me when I am in the bathroom. Fact: While sharing a room with Tenille, I was not asked once whilst performing my abblutions to "watch this" or "fix that" or "turn on this" or rub her hurties if she fell. 

But not only did she endear herself with that, she also got herself dressed and ready without any help and there were no tanties. Not a one. Just the nicest, most unassuming and quietly funny, intelligent woman. Able to brush her own hair and clothe herself. Pure heaven for a mother used to travelling with a toddler. So thanks, Tenille. It was an absolute pleasure to share a ridiculously oversize bed with you :) And uh... I'm wishing for the sake of my shot adrenals that I had taken you up on that lift to the airport...

Best Hugger:  Has to be Brenda from Mummy Time. It seemed every time I saw her, she was embracing someone, in an excited "I'm loving this shit, WOOOO!" kind of way. Unfortunately (or not), to my knowledge there are no photos of the dozen or so times Brenda grabbed me and hugged herself into my ample bust. Sorry. But there it is. The damn things arrive into conversations before I do, it has to be said.

Best. Conference. Organisers. EVER:  Brenda, VeronicaKarenTina, and NicoleGuys, without your vision and your perseverance and planning.... well, where would we have been without you? Love and sincere thanks to all five of you for making this a reality for so many.




* May or may not be completely irrelevant to the actual events of the Conference
** May or may not have been deliberately choreographed that way.

What I learned at the ABC: My Cheat Wrap-Up

Kleenex Mums asked the question What Did You Learn At The Aussie Bloggers Conference.

I'd like to say a hearty thank you to @kleenexmums for compiling that list of questions today because, really, it has made my waning creativity in the aftermath of the high energy weekend quite a lot easier. I have a partially concocted blog post in my drafts folder. But I also have a little Lolly Gobble Bliss Bomb doing her very very best not to interrupt me. It's not going too well. It's time for a walk for us now, I have to tear myself away from Twitter and Blogger and just go. The post will wait. Her hot chips date at the local café will not. Apparently.

So I've cheated. Here is a copy and paste of my reply to the question Melissa has posed at the Kleenex Mums website. If you have anything to add, why not go and comment as well? You could end up in their upcoming e-book on the topic! And if you have something to add here, well... of course, don't be shy. Go ahead and leave me a comment!




What did you learn?
First and foremost, there is room for everyone in the blogging community.
Keep at it. Be consistent and persistent with your writing and your goals for your blog. As Mark Pollard said, "Like attracts like." I will hold onto that thought as I really step my own blog's marketing up a gear.

My greatest learning was on a personal level. I learned not to hide my writing light under a bushel (so to speak) and to be proud and confident with it. It was hugely confronting yet so rewarding, in equal parts, to meet people who knew me because of reading my blog. It was also incredibly beneficial to understand that as bloggers, we all started somewhere, we all have a voice and we are as unique and worthy in the blogosphere as we are in life offline.
From my observations of the weekend and the inspirational perseverance through some truly unspeakable adversities, I have been reminded and heartened to once again return to writing like no one is reading. It is honestly the only way I enjoy my blog and I am doing it a disservice by not putting in anything less than my own voice.

What inspired you the most?
Watching the faces of bloggers around the room as they made connections. It was something I will take with me for a long time to come and I am emotional now as I recall it again. The sense of community was unexpectedly warm and welcoming, beyond my hopes and expectations. I hope it never changes, no matter how big the community grows.

Is there anything you think you’ll start doing differently now?
I have already made my avi consistent across my social media accounts - Twitter, blog, Facebook. I am also planning to move my blog across to its own dot-com (I already have the name) now that I have received advice from the bloggers at the conference about the plug-in I will need to go from Blogger to Wordpress. And I have to get a Facebook fan page organised post haste!

If you were starting your blog all over again, what would you do differently?
I wouldn't give it a ridiculous .blogger.com name. I began blogging in 2005 and moved to its current home in 2007, and at that time I made the URL long and confusing because I had a few stalkers I was trying to give the flick. Bad mistake! It is causing me a bit of hassle now as I plan to move across to a name more inline with my 'brand' (which I did not realise was so strong until the conference... so I'm doing something right, at least!).

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Bump Fertility

This is a sponsored post.


I'm not in the habit of sponsored posts - you know that. But when Naturopath and Founder of MassAttack and Bump Fertility took me up on my request to be sponsored for the Aussie Bloggers' Conference, I was delighted. See, if you know anything at all about me, it's that 1. I seek the alternative to doctors/western medicine first, and 2. This philosophy made pursuing IVF (in 2005) rather a challenge to my belief systems.

Added to this, I bristle at so-called "Get Pregnant Quick!" type ad's I see on my side bar in Facebook and the likes. As if it's as straightforward as handing your money over. Preposterous! Most people who have had issues when trying to conceive know that even if you try everything, sometimes it just doesn't work.... But it doesn't stop them from being as healthy as they can be and doing all in their means to improve their fertility to increase the chance of a healthy pregnancy happening.

That's why I find Bump Fertility, in particular, a very good fit for what I talk about on my blog. Over the next little while, you are going to see regular sponsored posts from me - via Bump - because their information is heartening, interesting and helpful. What's more, the team really does care.

If you are - or you know of - someone who is keen to maintain fertility health, which may or may not also include a regime to improve your current weight (whether that is to gain or lose), then Bump just may benefit you.

Without further ado, I give you the kick-off - an extract from a recent Bump Fertility e-newsletter I received into my Inbox that sets the tone of this unique program.



How to Achieve the Goals you Imagine…
by Narelle Stegehuis

I love this story because its essence is about staying positive and having faith… 
An old Cherokee shaman taught his grandson about the battle that goes on inside people. He said, "My son, the battle is between two 'wolves' inside us all. One is evil. It is anger, envy, jealousy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority and ego. The other is Good. It is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion, faith." 
The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked the grandfather, "Which wolf wins?" 
The old Cherokee simply replied "The one you feed."

Remember: all that is good will come back to assist every aspect of the "inner universe" that is you. 
Knock - and it shall be opened unto you
  
Seek - and you shall find
 
Ask - and you shall receive
Three steps to action - Knock, Seek and Ask. 
Perform the first positive action yourself and watch the positive effects come into your life. Consider not just sitting passively by and saying "this is my lot". Instead, consider taking forward positive action. 
Knock, seek and ask. 
It's up to you to put the law of receiving into action and to take the steps required to enhance your fertility and create the family of your dreams. Move in the direction of your goals, create your future. We never exactly know what our actions today will mean for tomorrow, but the more committed and aligned we are with our goals, the more our dreams tend to come true. 
I sincerely wish this for all of you so keep faith in your heart and open all the right doors so your future can find you. 
With Love and Support,
Narelle Stegehuis

Make Cash Blogging:  Visit MassAttack today to find out more!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

You know you're getting close to a blogger's conference when...



1. You're about to leave the house to take your child to kindy, head full of distracted thoughts about what you have yet to pack and need to remember, when your husband points to your bare legs and says, "Uh... pants or a skirt would be good?"

2.  You put a load of washing on, containing your conference/trip clothes, and realise five minutes later that - flast and buckit - you did this last week. At least your clothes will be doubly fresh and clean.

3.  You're having a rethink and kinda wishing you'd kept the reminder of your dorky past to yourself.... Hey, at least you know now that if you see me acting all grown up and serious, it's just for pretends. 'kay?

4.  All your failsafe methods of calming your nerves have gone out the window.

5.  You wonder why you think of other bloggers as stratospheric superstars? I mean, I'd be less excited to meet countless celebs than I am to be meeting some of my favourite people. For serious.

6.  You're starting to have palpitations about what shoes you can wear, given the limitations due to that dicky big toe that you broke 15 years ago but that still gives you trouble and prevents high-heel wearage... Hey, at least I know first when the rains are a-comin'.

7.  You're beginning to gather all your directions, tickets, passwords and various technological devices together and working out connections. Note to self: Don't forget your cousin's phone number or you'll be stranded at Epping station like a lost puppy. A puppy with 3 suitcases and 14 pairs of shoes because it couldn't decide which shoes were going to be best.

8.  You've scheduled a post to publish long after you've already left for the airport so that by the time people read this, you're well on your way to Sydenay for a long weekend to remember. Huzzah!

9.  You become so rushed by everything converging in the last couple of days that, in your haste to cook your family a hearty meal so that they don't replace you while you've been let off the chain attached to the sink you're gone, you tip scorching hot water over both hands and down your front. Tip: If your partner stands before you handing you an ice pack and telling you to step aside so he can finish for you, take his offer of help immediately. Don't waste precious burning-hot skin time shouting profanities and telling him you are quite capable, thankewe, because clearly.... right now, you're not.

10. Come hell or high water, swear to yourself you'll not rush. That you'll pack and be ready to make the 5am drive to the airport so that you're not rushing around the night before. And then spend that last night ironing your patooty off. Just see if you don't. Mark my words.


See you at the conference! And to those of you not going - I hope you don't get sick of all the Aussie blogs (and one US one) that are likely to be blathering about all things conference for the next whenever. There are a fair few of you who I WISH desperately were going so we could meet *wail* but oh well.

Perhaps a time shall come to pass when we will. Maybe next time, it will be somewhere more central to everyone.


International Blogging Conference 
in the Maldives in 2012, anyone?? 
Who's with me?

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Long ago, in a galaxy far, far away...



This is a trackback/rewind (whatever the kids are calling reposts of old blog posts these days) from a post I did on my old blog about four years ago. With such a new audience now, I thought it time I embarrass myself even more show my real identity before the Aussie Blogger's Conference. So that when you meet me (if you're going..... and damnit, other-Steve, I am still bummed you didn't try harder to scrape a spare $3,000 together to fly over here for the day! You sure you checked in your car ash tray? There's always surprise coinage in there), you can feel much more relaxed in my presence. For I may be standing before you in a dress (or pants... or a tunic... oh hell, I still can't decide what I'm taking/wearing), but know this: I have had the biggest wardrobe malfunction in the worst place a teenager can have.

Imagine that when you see me, yeah? Me and my tighty-whities. Scrunched up in my hand.... Enjoy! (at my expense)

------------------------


It's a little known fact that I am, in fact, a Superhero.

On one of our first, fledgling forays into the titillating area of our relationship, Steve and I got caught. I was 18, living at home with Dad. We were living in a rambling old '40s era house in an old leafy suburb, it was a great house. The front entrance was open to the lounge room to the right, the kitchen was accessed via one of two doorways, one straight ahead of the front door, the other facing the dining room and with a two-way swinging hinged door which opened onto that room. There was a sunroom past the dining area, tacked on the back of the open plan house. To get there from the front door, one went either straight through the T-shaped lounge room and dining area or, if in the kitchen, simply swung open the hinged door and through the dining room.



I am setting all this architecture up in your minds so that you can fully grasp the gravity of the situation that follows.


It was a typical school day afternoon. I was in Yr 12, Steve was supposed to be at uni, no doubt, and instead of doing something constructive we were fooling around in the sunroom. In broad daylight. Geez, those were the days *wistfully stroking severely distended belly with the painful welts - they're no longer worthy of being deemed mere stretch marks*

Anyway, I can't remember the specifics, suffice to say somehow I was the one who ended up pasty white and bare nekid while he had left on all his clothes and simply pulled down his jeans and jocks to his ankles (typically boy-style, complete with socks still on and all). It was late-ish afternoon, not nearly late enough for anyone to be coming home from work. Unexpectedly. With briefcase in hand.

But all of a sudden, there was the over-exaggerated coming-home noises being made by Dad. He (respectfully? fearfully? playfully?) was making sooooo much noise, I knew that he knew exactly what he suspected we were up to...... he was whistling a jolly, tuneless whistle, and in case that wasn't enough, he clomped very loudly up the three steps to the front porch (making the three itty bitty steps sound like full on steps to be reckoned with), and in case that wasn't enough, he was also loudly jangling/fumbling with keys for far longer than was usual.

I stood bolt upright, stark narkered, and ran to the far corner of the sunroom. Without my previously hastily-strewn clothes. Why I did that and not just throw on my clothes, I do not know. Guess I got the guilts. And I was no cool cucumber back then. Not when I was nude, anyway....

While I did prancy nervous steps on the spot, shaking my arms and flailing hands (like Homer when he's missing the Chili Cookout) and eyes wide with "oh God, oh God"s, I watched as Steve simply stood from his seated pozzy on the couch, hoiked up his pants in one swift move, did up the zip and sat back down to "continue watching the cricket" innocently.

Meantime, Dad was in the front door by now, putting keys away, whistling merrily. "Hello!" he bellowed characteristically joyously. I spurred into action and called out a greeting in reply, pulling my crumpled clothes towards me in a mad scramble (they were all inside out, which could have been deemed romantic because of the "heat of the moment" passion that got them that way but were now just a fucking nuisance to turn the right side out and make presentable again). Pulling on my top while Dad carried out some conversation with me as he slowly made his way through the kitchen to, I don't know probably grab a knife to skewer Steve with, I amazed myself in hindsight at how deftly I was able to use the chit chat as a decoy to what was really going on in the next room. Just that swingy-door between us.

I jumped into my pants and whisked them up, replying conversationally to everything Dad was saying about his day. Never one to just leave it at that, and I guess to prove to myself that I had triumphantly averted danger, I sauntered towards the closed kitchen door, chatting with Dad all the while as he stood in the kitchen reading the mail.

It wasn't until I'd almost rounded the dining table, hand outstretched at the door, that I felt my other hand brush past a rogue piece of material at my side. What was that? Looking down, as if in slow motion, I realised it was a pocket. It took me a second or two to realise that I hadn't pulled my pockets inside out in my haste.... oh no. Far worse. I had put my pants on inside out, complete with undies on the outside as had been the state they'd been discarded in originally. The hoppy, unsteady banging on the old stumped floor I made as I struggled to literally rip the stitching off my undies to get them down and step out of them brought me to not only Steve's very amused attention, but also caused Dad to sing out, "What're you doing in there?"

Needless to say, I waved that off with some excuse and breezed in through the kitchen door, undies scrunched in a tight tight ball in my fist, which was now stuffed inside my pocket. And I continued to, probably very flustered-looking and giving away eeeev-er-y-thing I'd just been doing, carry out my conversation with Dad.

I think I got away with it. He certainly never said anything. But then... he's too proper to, even in gest.

And from that day on, after I recounted the story to very amused girlfriends, I was known as Supergirl, given my supposed preference to wear my undies on the outside.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

I need your opinions!

I need your opinion please. Always welcome, on all things.

Today, very important question....

Which paint colour should I use on my office exterior walls?? 

Our home is a green-tinted cream weatherboard with lovely dark green-grey accents. From the east side of the house, we will be able to look across the deck and see the office from all windows. So it has to be a colour that we're not going to be offended by in the near future. I am partial to red, as you may have seen if you were reading my blog back in the day (when we did the kitchen reno) but for those not familiar with it, here are some shots of my splashback:

It's a bit brown, it's burnt, it's a good red


So I had wanted to carry that red through to the back yard. I'm thinking this colour mightn't look too shabby. A nice, earthy brown-red. But I don't know if I should do a less "in your face" colour.

What are your thoughts? Have you seen this sort of red or another bold colour work well over a large area outside like this? Got any photos of it?? I was thinking perhaps a deep green. But think it might start to look too much "the same".

Here is the wall we'd be looking at the most - all those blue areas you see are what I have to paint. Given the muted greys/greens of the rest of the house, I want a really strong feature colour.

And no... we're not remotely interested in keeping the blue....





Friday, March 11, 2011

Oh, Japan

My brother is making his way home on foot from Tokyo city. He can't get in touch with his wife and daughters (age 6 and 8). I've been trying to get through to him since 5pm our time. He phoned via Skype - love modern technology - not half an hour after the quake hit - and he rattled me almost clean out of my tree.

It was not a cool-cucumber moment from me, I must say. Having just witnessed Christchurch images and living that, live, I just couldn't shake the worry (thinly veiled hysteria for a while there up until about an hour ago) as I watched the horror unfolding from the effects of this massive natural earth reaction.

I have attempted this evening to walk up to the bottle shop for a settling tipple. Walked Jazz up to the shops, realised I forgot wallet and went back home again. Headed out, Jazz in tow again.... got almost to shops again. Forgot wallet again. Dammit! Took car, came back just now. Pinot Gris in hand.

---

Poor Mother Earth. I am so weepy for the world right now. What are we doing to Her?

---

In the midst of all this, I had sporadic contact with my brother mostly via Skype, but he managed to get onto Facebook to tell me not to panic. "They're still shopping here (in Prada, dahling)" he updated. It made me laugh, despite myself. I requested he buy me a handbag if he would be ever so kind.

---

Still can't get through to my sister in-law. Latest advice on Twitter is not to phone Japan. Well.... try waiting to find out if your family is safe and then see how that sits with you! I can only hope now that my brother makes it home tonight, the only way he can right now (on foot). The traffic must be horrific now, right? We're talking Japan here. Hundreds of thousands work in that city.

To give a rough idea, he is walking a distance on foot (and hoping when he gets there that they are safe, if not shaken, and just incommunicado) of Melbourne to roughly Blackburn, or Sydney to Homebush. Nothing left for it but to walk and avoid the aftershocks.

My heart is in my mouth. Praying and thinking of all those caught in Japan and in the tsunamis.

And so we wait. My family here are on hold. My father has thrown up, apparently - he says he thinks it's not related to this, which is a moot point, given that he's obviously so internally upset that he considered the possible connection. But it is stressful, the waiting. Not knowing. They could be fine, they're surely fine. The girls are probably at home being kept distracted by their mother. I hope and pray with everything that they are okay. The girls would have been at school.

---

9:44pm Friday
I'm thinking of my sister in-law, she doesn't know if my brother is okay. He's on his way home and is fine for the time being, but I just did a quick Google Earth calculation from the city to his suburb. It's telling me it is over 4.5 hours on foot. I sure hope he catches a ride some way out of the city. What a torturous time for him, for her. For us back here! He's able to contact Australia, but he can't call his wife. Aaaargh.

Breathe.

More later. I'm on Twitter.


---


10:46pm Friday
A little bleary-eyed, a couple of glasses in...

Just heard from my brother, he has managed to make the trek to his mate's place somewhere outside of Tokyo to the west. They are now trying to drive him home but he still cant' get through traffic. We still can't get through on the phone to our sister in-law. But he is closer now. Man, this is testing my calm resolve. I hugged the LGBB SO fucking tight tonight when she got home with her Dad. And then I hugged her Dad like I never wanted to let go.

---

11:35pm
Just heard from my brother. He turned back the friend who was driving him towards home, the roads are too congested. He is on foot again. BUT.... he has been in email contact with my sister in-law! She is very sad but the girls and her are safe. And they know he is okay. My heart can get out of my throat now and I think I am about to crash into a stupor.

Thank you for your care, Twitter/Blogger-verse. You have been awesome. Big shout out to @CateP36 and @kirrilyfred especially.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

The search is over

In a final flurry of enthusiastic bargain shopping, I now have everything I need for the conference and the various drinks/nibbles extras I've been invited to next weekend.

For a while there, up til last week, I was planning on just coming for the conference. Sneaking in through some side entrance and even, as discussed with one kindred blogger who shall remain nameless (unless she wants to out herself in the comments once she reads this...), turning up in my usual blogging attire - hey, it's a blogging conference. I blog in house clothes. I'm more comfortable that way! It made sense to me at the time.

But when I had a flash forward to walking in, by myself, on Friday night... and then Saturday.... and then seeing everyone else do a costume change on Saturday night.... I realised my trackies and singlet weren't going to cut it, much less the bed socks.

So I loaded the LGBB in the car today and took her to a dress shop. If nothing else, I figured, she would be able to delight in seeing her mummy "dress up perdy" - I do scrub up alright, I had totally forgotten - even if I wasn't going to actually buy the cocktail frocks the hopeful shop attendant kept fetching me.

She totally got my shape wrong. I looked like a lollypop on a stick. Over and over again, she brought me things that cut in underneath my sizeable bust and kept my shoulders and decolletage bare. Thanks, lady! Just accentuate the .. erm... unpositive bits.

Lolly, as I figured, had an absolute ball. We had the change rooms to ourselves and she kept closing the curtains and announcing my grand entrance to the empty foyer with the scary mirrors all round. That kid needs a stage and a spotlight. Her mother needs an invisibility cloak. How did that happen?

Anyway, we left the shop of the pretty, expensive, way-over-budget very not-Mummy dresses and tottered our way a few shops down to a Melbourne designer outlet. A shop I have always walked past, no idea why, but am I ever so glad I went in there this day. Here comes a plug...

The women from Motto give the best happy-energy, honest confidence boost you could EVER hope to come across. I left there with a tear in my eye (no, not from the price, which was very reasonable for the three items I bought - I even snapped up a $130 dress for only $30!!! And in fact, all three combined were $30 less than the one, single-purpose dress I was being pushed to buy at the first shop) and was even given a hug goodbye. I do that sometimes to people. They wanna hug me. Maybe one time someone will offer to adopt me, take me home, love me, bring me meals and make sure I have my collar and registration tag on before letting me out to roam.

So, it seemed, I had needed to get an outfit after all. I promised myself only to "buy practical" and if I saw something that I couldn't justifiably use again, I should leave it and walk away. Truth is, I could have made do with what I have in my wardrobe at home already. But who wouldn't pass up an opportunity to go shopping in places one would not normally shop?

It wasn't until we were climbing in the car that I unexpectedly received the biggest confirmation I could have hoped for. I looked in the rear vision mirror and saw Lolly gazing at the back of my head as I was getting my seat belt on.

"What's up, Lollypop?" I asked her, not sure what she was thinking, her look was so earnest and focused she was almost frowning.

"I think you are very beautiful," she said. Just like that.

I cried then, quietly. And just like that, whatever I chose to wear to the conference, the dinner, the pre-conference drinks, the morning after.... All of it vanished into insignificance. The money I had just spent on the clothes, while not irrelevant now, was put into perspective. It doesn't necessarily mean I'll be coming wearing my knock-around house clothes. But it does mean I have been firmly reminded of what (and who) is underneath.

Just as I have always said to my daughter, when she watches me put on make-up on the rare occasions that I wear it,

"Make-up doesn't make you pretty. 
It just colours in the beauty that is already there so that it stands out a little more."

I don't want her thinking that clothes and makeup are all she needs to feel good about herself. But it's good to bring in some balance too. I'd like to think that she sees the difference, or starts to, as she grows older.

Touching noses since 2008

All of us are beautiful to those who matter most to us (and to whom we matter). It's age-old and very worn, but it is oh so true. It reminds me of a Dr Seuss quote I used to have on my fridge - and should probably put back on my blog here because it's a great one:


"Be who you are and say what you feel 
because those who mind don't matter 
and those who matter don't mind."
Dr. Seuss


Flog your blog over on a special 10,000 BC edition of FYBF today with Wilma Glowless!

FYBF 

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

I love what she sees

Occasionally, I am given cause to stop and pause...

To catch my breath and remember what I'm actually doing is not rushing around, is not trying to do this, that and the other before bedtime, is not failing all of my own high ideals.

It is, simply 
Living

There is no more poignant a time to realise this than when I am granted the deep privilege of seeing things through my daughter's eyes. And no greater illustration than through her photography. In her four year-old outlook, almost everything holds the potential of wonder.

On this day, it was the formation of the "beautiful clouds". A capture that surely would have gone unnoticed had I not been given the clue to look up. 

And that's all it takes to replenish me. In an instant, I am granted the release, to realise that although I am of the world, I don't need to get so caught up in it.


Taken by the LGBB.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Where do we come from?

I want to discuss in today's post something I usually don't write about openly. Have a conversation with me for long enough and you will learn more about this side of my life. But yeah. In writing, on here, not so much. Main reason being, I think, is that it involves other people (or at least, energies) and I am deeply respectful that these are not my stories to chat about, no matter what the well-intended purpose. That and, it's just a matter of course - not something I like to mention because the work is very humbling and at times, overwhelming. I harbour a deep respect for all those things that are unseen, but at the same time, if I'm not candid about it sometimes (which is why I don't mind talking to people if they want to ask me questions) then I am doing a disservice to people who might be new to experiencing these things they have no other logical explanation for.

So today, I've felt the urge to write about this. I expect I might see my Follower number drop slightly, but so be it... ;)  This is me, too, as much as the LGBB, my stories about mullets and my memories of Ellanor.

One of my "other" jobs is, for want of a better explanation, like being a switchboard operator connecting babies to their parents - most often before conception has taken place. Sometimes, one or both parents has something to clear in their own pattern before the child decides to come (and in my experience, the child always decides!). Sometimes it has taken months, sometimes it hasn't happened - take me and Steve, for one example I know I can safely mention - and sometimes it's quite instantaneous.

It's beautiful work. Hard to explain, certainly hard to prove. So I'm not out to prove myself here. But I do want to explain a little bit what it's like for me, as some sort of caretaker on this physical plane, when I have these little kids about.

Years ago, I used to have dreams with the same pattern:  I would be a governess in a large, rambling boarding house, walking around with a lantern (yes, a ruddy great lantern! how very unsafe in an occupational health sense...), opening all the doors and checking on the children asleep in their beds in these rooms. Room after room after room, packed with children. I'd wake feeling like I had been up all night, as if I had spent it literally walking the halls of a rambling old boarding house.... checking all the doors...!

Sometimes, I would dream about the children actually going off with their parents - parents I don't know, have never met before in my life - and I can remember vivid scenes and how choked-up and happy I felt, knowing that those children had been well looked after until they got to go home with their mum and dad. These were bigger kids, of about 6 or 7, I'd guess. And I'd stand and wave them off, bus loads of kids and their parents (the scene would be kind of like I'd imagine it is when school children come home from camp and their parents are there to greet them and take them home).

These dreams continued, somewhat tantalisingly, between losing Ellanor and having Lolly. It was during this time (in 2004/2005) that I began to dread and then slowly accept that perhaps that was what I was put on this Earth to do. That perhaps there was to be no other children for us, because I had to do this job that was starting to feel enormous - rewarding, fulfilling even on some level, but really huge.


One memorable time, after I'd had the LGBB (for they waned after that and I don't have nearly so many - in fact, none in the past few years that I can remember), I dreamed that I had to park my car on the freeway and walk with other adults across a pedestrian bridge to go and work in a child care centre to help them. ....Huh?!


But slowly, the dreams slowed as I began to be more responsible to actually doing the work in my waking hours. It would take a few more years and would come after I had healed enough from my own trauma and by 2008, it started to really become something I could set aside time for, instead of being called out of bed at ungodly hours in the dead of night to go and sit with these energies and this work (it used to really scare me, I avoided it a lot of the time until I learned to master it and dissolve the unfounded fears).

These days, my work in this area is more practical. The dreams are rare now and the situations happen less often but I usually have more of an idea who I am helping, although sometimes even that happens only after the fact (if at all).


One time, I think I actually captured one of these little people in a photo. Check this out:
Click on the photo, look in the mirror on the left

That mirror reflects the back wall of the kitchen and the kitchen bench. There was nothing on the bench at the time, certainly nothing of any great height. It was kind of cool for me to see what looks very much like the face of a young child (a bit older than my child at the time), as I don't ever see these kids. I just hear and feel them.


Take, for instance, what is going on around here lately. I am again being touched on the leg by unseen little people (or possibly just the one). I'm hearing them come stomping up the hallway on toddling little feet. Steve hears them too. He just says it's weird. I don't think it's weird. A tad unnerving, hell yeah! But after this long, I don't find it weird. In fact, I find it something close to as normal as I'm probably ever going to get, frankly! *I'm laughing now, for poor Steve* I know that pretty soon - and soon could mean months - I am going to learn of someone who is trying to have a baby. And I'll be given more information, if it's required, and I'll be working with one or both the parents to see this baby come into reality.

Anyway, the last time this happened was about twelve months ago or a bit less. I wrote about it at the time on my private blog, wondering if this was a child of ours. I was going through some angst about this and that, and the age-old concerns of the infertile couple:  "Am I not getting/staying pregnant because of something I am doing or saying or who I am or because I can't sort my shit out or because I have fought with my husband for 6 months straight?" At that time, I was the only one who had been hearing footsteps (always thinking they were the LGBB but finding her tucked up asleep in bed, or otherwise hearing them when I was home alone), until this one night when Steve heard them too.

Those footsteps turned out to be a little someone who I had been looking out for for nigh on two years - long story, won't go into it all now, as it's not my story or my child to talk about anymore, but I had originally assumed this was a boy who was waiting to come to us (because he hung around so long!) - and who is now about to be born.

Well, it happened again the other night. The footsteps. Steve heard them, came out of the living room and asked if I wanted to go and see if Lolly was okay or did I want him to. I told him I was on my way down to see what she was up to. It sounded like she'd tried to get to the loo and was still half asleep, because those steps were pacing between her room and the toilet, then up the hallway to us and back down to her room again. I never expected to find her, fast asleep, all tucked up in bed. When I told Steve, I think he wasn't even surprised anymore! Which is kinda cool for me - I feel not so alone because he hears them now too!

So. That coupled with the little nudge I got yesterday, which I actually thought was the dog or the cat bumping my leg but when I looked around they were nowhere in sight, leads me to believe I am looking after another little kid again.


I realise at this point many of you will be very challenged by what I'm saying here. That it seems too unbelievable and there is no way for me to prove it (apart from get you to talk to Steve about the footsteps he hears these days and to some of these past parents who've had an awareness/understanding and dialogue with me about what's going on for them and for me, mind you!). But the fact is, for me, this is fact. These things actually happen. I appreciate many people will find that hard to believe, much like anything that you can only take someone else's word on. Healthy doubt or scepticism is a good thing.

I'm more interested in asking:

Does anything like this happen to you?
If so, what is your understanding of the process?
Are you too afraid to talk about your work, for fear of sounding crazy or being misunderstood? Hey... come sit by me, then! And you can email me if you don't wish to leave a public comment here. I'd love to hear from you.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

I love this girl

Walking home from kindy.


And I adore these Photoshop filters.

Pity I only had my iPhone handy...


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