My story is not like everyone else’s. I know total cliché line to open with. It is something, that I have learnt to accept and I am very open with. To tell my story I need to also tell my mums. Read more ›
Today is a good day. Sometimes the good days feel few and far between. Perhaps that’s not the case, perhaps my brain only recognises them on the odd occasion, perhaps my mind isn’t able to celebrate all the beautiful little things in life.
That’s my brain though. Sometimes I’m a glass half full kind of girl, and other times I want to peg the glass at the wall and yell at the person that brought it to me. What a fun character, right?
I love you, but I love you for different reasons now that we are actual adults, you know, adultier adults.
I love you when you change a nappy that smells like satans breath.
I love you when your muscles glisten with sweat as you Gumption away Mr 2’s latest wall art.
I love you when you cook different meals because one has to be gluten free and you don’t want to see your little man in pain (and up screaming all night).
I love you when you let me sleep in even though your eyes are hanging out, you keep forget the kids names, and you just tried to put a bib on the cat.
I love you when you talk me down from an anxiety attack. Most would run for the hills, or tell me to harden up, but you always know how to bring me down softly.
I love you when you wash every piece of linen we own after food poisoning has taken us out.
I love you when you tell me that you think I’m beautiful even when I haven’t showered for two days and I’m wearing your ratty old shirt and granny undies that are four sizes too big.
I love you when you go in to settle the terrors for the thirty-fourth time that night.
I love you when you speak up and say ‘I just can’t go back in there, they’ve broken me’ because we’re a team, and I’ve got you.
I love you when you read to our children. I know you don’t like reading. I know it makes you feel awkward and silly. You do it for them anyway.
I love you when you play computer games with a child on each knee. I love you when you teach the boys how to play and I love you when Mr 4 comes to teach me how to land an aircraft,because that’s all you.
I love you when you perfectly lip sync the ‘Trolls’ movie. I also cringe though, sorry.
I love you when you sing and dance while you clean, like a better-version of Tom Cruise with a symmetrical face and without Scientology.
I love you when you watch something boring or gross on Netflix and I end up watching Good Mythical Morning on my phone. Then you stop watching your zombie crap because GMM is more interesting, and we realise that we should have just put it on in the first place and agree not to let you choose anymore.
I love you when you shave for work every morning because you want to look professional, even though we both know at heart you’re a bearded beast.
I love you when you discipline the children so that I don’t have to (for the twenty third time).
I love you when you recognise that even though I will only be working once a week, that doesn’t make my work any less important to me than yours is to you.
I love you when you tell me to study. Even if I do spend most of the time doodling ‘my husbands a jerk because he’s making me study’.
I love you when you talk about my grandfather. It kills me that our children didn’t get to meet him, but you did and you help me keep his memory alive.
I love you when you get home from work, tell me to go and have a rest, and brace yourself for the onslaught as three boys come flying at you from every direction and I run like I’m being chased by a mass murder.
I love you you get excited about me watching 50 Shades of Grey because you think that I’m going to come home wanting to pretend you’re Christian. Mate, it was one time.
I love you when you sleep walk. When you jump out of bed yelling at me to run because ‘they’re coming’. When you roll around the ground so ‘they’ don’t see you. When you laugh about it while I tell you of your adventures the next morning.
I love you for so many more reasons, but at least one child needs me so I have to leave it at that.
I love you. I just really, really love you. I love you so much I want to squish your cheeks and never let you go.
I love you more, but I love you differently.
I love you for the gross things, the boring things, the necessary things, the real things.
I love you for navigating your way through this ridiculous, crazy, life with me.
So I’ve just finished doing the grocery shopping and I’m sitting in the car, in the air-con but still sweating more than any lady should, and I just don’t want to move. You know?
I feel so bogged down.
Grocery shopping is bittersweet for me. Oh my lord do I love the alone time. Seriously, it’s incredible to have a couple of hours (hell yes I take my sweet time) to just be an adult. Doing an adulty thing, without the Trolls soundtrack blaring in my ears. That’s the sweet part.
The bitter part is that I have to farewell a dear friend that I quite simply do not get to spend enough time with. Money. Yes, yes I know, money is private, I shouldn’t talk about it. Eh, that’s the same thing people tell me when I talk about depression, and I haven’t stopped yet, have I?
Money is like Bigfoot in my house. You can see the signs that he was here…there are groceries, there is toilet paper, there are gigantic footprints in the snow – BUT YOU NEVER SEE HIM! Just when I think I’ve got him pinned down someone needs a specialist appointment, or the cat gets in a fight (we name her Khaleesi and it’s like an invitation for randy tomcats to come and try to put her in her place #womeninpowermate), or some breaks a shoe, or the bloody kids expect to eat again! It’s exhausting. I’m so tired of having to worry about something that is so vital.
I’m tired of having to stay logged into NetBank while the cashier is scanning my items so that I don’t go over the $23.47 in my account. I’m tired of having to drink crappy coffee because Moconna costs more than nappies. I’m tired of panicking when the kids ask for the odd takeaway dinner, and then I have to say no and watch their little faces drop. I’m tired of not being able to go on date nights even when someone offers to baby-sit because we can’t afford the petrol, or movie tickets, or milk for the baby-sitters coffee. I’m tired of not spoiling my husband on Christmas, or his birthday, or Valentine’s Day because we agreed early on that it just isn’t a possibility. I’m tired of having to do a walk around Woolies just to let the kids get a piece of fruit from the kids basket. I’m tired of complaining about it. I’m tired of hearing myself thinking about it. I’m just so damned tired.
Look I know there is more to life than money. I know my kids can still have a great childhood and that love is the most important thing…blah,blah,blah. That doesn’t make it easier. Sometimes all that helps is a good old fashioned whinge-rant.
I start work this week. Once a week I will Carmen the employee (my super power is excessively talking about my kids, pretending I know how to act in an adult situation, and eating without sharing). This is my first job in nearly five years and whilst I know we need the income, and I really have to do it ready or not, it’s still hard to come to terms with. Ideally I would be in Uni full-time, smashing out my Bachelor in record time and getting a job that pays a stupid amount of money, but I have kids, so nothing in life is that simple.
Little blessings they are – going to eat me out of house and home, I’ll be living in a box on the street, in a four year old bra that’s three sizes too big for me, with hair resembling Cousin Itt, and my feet will be so black it’ll look like I’m wearing shoes #fashionstatement
Thinking positive, thinking positive – I am grateful for the bottomless pits that are my sons, that cause me to spend my whole pay on food. I am grateful that I need to buy toilet paper because that means they are keeping regular. I am grateful that I have a car to get around in, and spend copious amounts of money on for ridiculous things like petrol, and rego.
Oops. I guess I’m not in a very ‘silver lining’ kind of mood. Maybe later when I’m shoving my face full of the salami I just spent this weeks rent on?
Until then, I’ll keep on searching for Bigfoot, that jerk owes me a flat white.
You know, I knew I would. It wasn’t good. It’s my first one and I just didn’t ‘get it’. I also have a thousand and one excuses about why I failed, some valid, some a bit of a stretch, but it doesn’t matter. Bottom line is, I did fail.
But it’s totally okay because it was the submission of the fist draft so I get another shot at sucking! Yaaaay #sarcasm.
I just bought more expensive, healthier yoghurt pouches that I really can’t afford and I told my kids they can’t eat them.
I know, I know, you’re all like ‘uh Carmen, why did you buy them if they can’t eat them?’ Let me tell you!
It is because #biggestlittle starts pre-school on Monday and I’m already bracing myself for the lunchbox guilt.
We are a relatively healthy household. In June last year we cut out most of the basic junk from our lives (sweets, soft drink etc) and since then we’ve made additional tweaks here and there to hit that next level ‘healthy home’ – swapping regular flour for coconut or almond flour, giving sugar the flick, making spreads from scratch, actually making everything from scratch when we can.
But seeing some of the supermum lunch boxes that kids get these days has me feeling a little low.
I don’t even know why I’m panicking. Possibly (read: definitely) because of old mate anxiety. Our kids usually choose tomoatoes over lollies, they’ve never had soft drink, and they live for the free fruit basket at Woolies. There’s really not a big adjustment to be made. But that nasty little voice in my head is telling me it’s not enough.
Please don’t think that I’m sitting here all holier than thou looking down on others who choose to do things differently. No, no, no. It took us a long time to get here, and we are far from perfect. The kids still get the occasional Maccas meal and spend Christmas getting hyped up and Boxing Day crashing down. Easter still involves chocolate (and yes supermarkets, I saw you stocking the shelves with brightly coloured foil covered animals whilst the garbage trucks were still straining under the weight of scrunched up wrapping paper and empty Shopkins blind bags), and birthdays are still all about the cake.
The point I’m trying to make is that we are a healthy home and I still feel incredible pressure to provide a very specific kind of tucker for the little tacker. I’ve been Youtubing, Googling, and Pintresting my fingers off. My most used words may now be ‘lunchbox’, ‘Sugar-free’, and ‘kids’ ( kids because otherwise I get a heap of mason jar salads perfect for the office!)
I feel strongly that some of the pressure is good. No, seriously! Sometimes pressure is a good thing, because it makes me try harder. I strive to do better for my family.
And other times it just makes me crumble. I break, and instead of trying my hardest to adapt I retreat, sometimes literally – jumping into my bed and assuming the foetal position.
We need to find the balance. Not everyone is in the same place and that’s ok, it’s not my life, not my children, not my circus.
Of course children should eat healthy, nutritious foods, we all know that, but we shouldn’t shame those who don’t have the same mindset. We are all on our own journey. Perhaps we could gently see if someone is open to advice while being careful not to have a condescending undertone, or we could share our advice to the public in a place they can see and leave it in their hands.
My kids will have healthy lunch boxes majority of the time, but some days I just won’t have the energy to do anymore than a jam sandwich, an apple, and a biscuit and I shouldn’t have to feel guilty about that. No one should.
Strive to be healthy, cook together, make mistakes, try new things, and make sure you laugh while you do it – we’re making memories and creating lifelong connections with food here!
The Simpsons say you don’t make friends with salad, perhaps it’s time we consider that Homer may not be the incredibly sexy, intelligent, healthy role model he was so clearly designed to be.
Disclaimer, because internet – I am not saying that we should ever ignore situations where a child is actually being neglected. #commonsense #hopefullythatsobvious
When I hit upload on my blog post ‘We’re under attack‘ the other day I had no idea what it would turn into! It seemed that the reply threads consisted of twenty-odd positive, supportive comments and then one that suggested my children were monsters. Twenty more ‘I feel you!’ comments, and one accusing me of shrugging my children playing up as ‘boys will be boys’ (I have never, and I will never). Another twenty comments sending love, and one telling me that my children targeted the little girl and had planned an attack on her – puh-lease.
I just refuse to believe that children are nasty little schemers with a plan for world domination and pulling peoples hair. Perhaps I’m naive. Either way, I know my children, and they definitely don’t have a bunker full of targets photos and playground blueprints.