A couple of nights ago Son Number Two woke me in the early hours of the morning. I had been having a nightmare that something was coming at me out of the dark and, in my dream, I had been screaming his name. He said, in real life, that he couldn’t understand what I was crying out, but that I was clearly distressed, so he woke me up. It wasn’t the first time, it will not be the last. He wakes me up and talks to me for a couple of minutes as I reorient myself and then he goes back to bed. And in the morning he gets up and goes off to school. 

Last Wednesday was Son Number Two’s eighteenth birthday. That seems incredible to me but there you have it. My beautiful Daughter Number One died when he was four years old and he has very few memories of her. Life ‘After’ is life as he knows it. I wanted his birthday to be all about him and I think, I hope, that he felt that it was. The birthday video I made to post to facebook had only one photo of him with each sibling; the rest of an increasingly good looking boy across the years. So many memories as I trawled through photos to pick the best ones. 

And I got things together and I organised his birthday dinner but by the big day I was exhausted from the effort of containing the unfairness of his big sister not being here to celebrate this milestone with him and the brutality of the knowledge that she never got to see her eighteenth birthday. Or any birthday after she turned fourteen. Each night this week brought a nightmare that didn’t really stop when I awoke. 
On his birthday Son Number Two went off to school and I attended to the last few details. I went to visit a friend and while they were sweeping outside I stood in their kitchen with music on full blast and sobbed the kind of heaving, full bodied sobs that leave you unsure if you are going to vomit and bring you literally to your knees – and they did, and they did. But before my friend came inside I had wiped off my face and regained my composure and the day wore on. 

I came home to my Son and one friend, followed by another, then another. We all got ready to go out for his birthday dinner and there were many laughs. The general consensus amongst his friends seems to be that I am cool, as parents go. But they have no idea of how hard my Son’s life has been at times. We have had some adventures though, he and I, and I guess we have both made it this far. That’s saying something in itself even if I’m not sure what that is. What I do know is that he has a solid group of friends who, like him, are loyal smart arses for the most part. But funny as fuck. 
We all prepared to go out and I sent them off to the bus stop and waited for my own lift at the top of my drive way and with their laughter travelling around the corner to me I felt the tightness in my chest and the change in my breathing as the grip I held so tightly once again started to slip. I sent an emergency text to one of my oldest, dearest friends and then my other lovely friends picked me up to go to the restaurant. 

The birthday dinner was a good night out and a jolly good time was had by all. I limped through the rest of the week and here we are, on Father’s Day. 

Once again I feel for my son and all that was stolen from him but more than that, I am so grateful. I am grateful beyond measure for the truly good men who have been in his life. The ones who came to his birthday dinner and clapped him on the back, shook his hand and hugged him goodbye. I am grateful for all of those men who have spent time with him over his life and who have cared enough to make the effort. I am thankful for the beautiful men and fathers I have the privilege of knowing, the true good guys that mean I continue to have hope. Lastly, I am grateful for my Son, who he is and who he is becoming. 

Safe onward travel x 


You win some, you lose some….

I started the day with the (what has become) usual headache, and turned on the computer to find twelve views of my words!! Perhaps it is just a case of if you write it they will come, or maybe it is one person viewing my blog twelve times? Whatever, it did give me a little buzz- someone is out there!


My day was just as taxing as I’d imagined. One of the doctor’s appointments I had this morning was to find out  the results of a pap smear that I’d worked up the courage to have after three and a half years. And the results were……drum roll please!……..’technically unsatisfactory’. Which basically means they didn’t get a good enough sample to test and would I please come back in three months for another go? Isn’t that just a pain in the ……..well, you know where. I suppose it serves me right for avoiding it for so long. I do know it is stupid, and I was really proud of myself for tackling it in the spirit of my new looking after myself kick. I think Jade Goody’s death probably provided the final nudge. Anyhow, looks like I get to be proud of myself again in three months.


While I was there I also hopped on the scales and found I was a kilo and a half  HEAVIER than when I started eating less junk and exercising. Yes, it really was a cheery trip to the doctor’s. She tried to console me with the knowledge that muscle weighs more than fat and that if I have been exercising it is possible that I have been increasing my muscle bulk. Mmmmmmm. That may be theoretically so but it still felt like a big kick in the teeth, with the temptation of giving up looming large. My clothes do seem to be fitting better though, or at least I thought they were? Now I’m wondering if it is just wishful thinking? SIGH. Anyway, I haven’t been at it very long so I’ll give it a good go before I call it a day. I don’t give up easily.  


My visit to Centrelink (which is social security) would have been straight forward if not for the very bad weather we’ve been having. This meant I was not the only one going there today, and the queues were very long. Daughter Number Two takes after her mother in the patience department and was very put out by having to stand around for an enormous amount of time doing nothing. I’d like to say her shrieking helped me get served in a speedier fashion but I don’t think it did. I think it just annoyed everyone we were waiting with.


Anyway, I accomplished all I set out to do and although I literally feel like I’ve run a marathon I am thinking positively about all the exercise I have done walking all over town. I was going to tell you that I picked up some belated birthday items from the Post Office for Daughter Number Two. A dinner set with Miffy on it. Daughter Number Two is a big Miffy fan! I was going to tell you that I somehow had lost the Miffy dinner set after getting it home. That I had looked and looked but couldn’t for the life of me remember what I had done with it upon getting it home.I was going to tell you how my brain no longer functions too highly and that sometimes it is a wonder I can make it through the day. That my memory and concentration are shot to shit and the reasons why I am not in any hurry to learn how to drive any time soon.


 Thankfully Son Number One went to have his bath and found the Miffy dinner set in the children’s bathroom (don’t ask, I don’t know!) . So, all’s well that ends well, right?

One more river, one more river…..

I’ve been wandering around the blogosphere today and it is a little intimidating. It is also awe-inspiring. There are so many voices out there, some saying things so much better than I am. So many people and stories and lives. Maybe it doesn’t matter what I say or how I say it here, because today no one has dropped in to read it, and my biggest day yesterday was with six views!


My primary motivation was to empty out some of the things spinning around in my head, and that is certainly accomplished by writing here. And I guess however small the numbers I am connecting with others on some level, even if it is only when I follow links to their words.


Today has been a busy but mundane day. Housework and children and getting ready to lurch into the coming week. It has been chilly, I am tired, I can’t remember the last morning I awoke without the dull headache that slows me down all day. My two year old Daughter Number Two has decided she no longer needs her day time sleep. I beg to disagree as she has been cranky and tired all afternoon.


I know that I have a very busy day tomorrow and I am less than enthusiastic. I have to fit in two doctor’s appointments, one visit to my Nana, one visit to Centrelink, one visit for Daughter Number Two with her Dad, blood tests and be home at 1pm in time for Son Number One to get home from school.


I am writing this while making dinner. Predictably Daughter Number Two has fallen asleep on the lounge next to her brother. Sigh. Finally she sleeps and I have to wake her. Oh well, we are nearing the finish line of bedtime. I think tonight the children and I may be neck and neck.


Despite having to drag myself step by step through the day I still feel like I’ve accomplished some things. Nothing big, but every little bit counts.