Category Archives: motherhood

An epistle to my big boy

My Darling Boy,

Tomorrow you start kindergarten.

How can that be? It seems like only yesterday that you were handed to me in the hospital, all squishy, pink and utterly delicious. As I gazed upon your perfect little face, all scrunched up and screaming though it was, I promised you that I would never take my eyes off you, my precious boy.

And yet, tomorrow I must.

You are off to school.  Not the safe confines, heavily supervised, occasional and completely optional realms of child care, but school! You are a big boy, not a baby anymore (though off the record, you’ll always be my baby. Deal with it) and now there will be so many hours in the week when I will not be able to watch you, care for you or protect you and so many hours that I cannot talk to you, listen to you and guide you. Instead, during those hours, I hand those responsibilities to your teachers.

Though I will not be with you, my head will be full of you every moment – wondering if you’re happy, if you’re making friends, if you’re being kind and respectful or if you’re kung-fu dancing in the hallways (actually I won’t be wondering that as it’s a given). And also if you are missing me as much as I will be missing you.

I feel like I’m releasing you out into the wild. I can only hope I am sending you prepared.

You are a beautiful boy with a big heart and have everything you need to be anyone you want to be and achieve anything you want in life – not least parents who will love you and be behind you all the way, whatever your choices (with the exception of serial killing and joining the Young Liberals).

I know you’re ready for this next big challenge in your life. But tonight I’m seriously wondering if I am. You are so excited and I am excited for you but a part of me is knotted up as I loosen the apron strings and let you go and grow.

It was moments ago you spoke your first words and took your first steps. And now you’re stepping out on to a new stage in your shiny new black shoes (which, incidentally, I give until the end of the day to be scuffed beyond repair).

You are my miracle. The first of two children your dad and I were told we would never have. But here you are and you are larger than life. And even now, as I tuck you into bed as a pre-schooler for the very last time, I still can’t quite believe my luck.

Enjoy your new adventure, Sweetheart.

I love you.

Mummy

xx

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An epistle to a one-year-old Sugar-Puff

Dearest baby girl,

It’s 6.00 am and I am extremely awake. You, sweetness, are not. For once! I can’t sleep because my head is so full of you, precious girl, at this sweetly significant time. You see, one year ago at this exact same time I was also awake. Only on that occasion I was being raced to the hospital due to an impatient little girl who was in rather a hurry to be born.

It’s been one year since your burst screaming into the world, all pink and squishy and so gloriously alive. One year since I first held you in my arms, amazed that your daddy and I, with the assistance of a cast of thousands and the wonders of modern science, were clever enough to make perfect little you.

It’s been a year of holding your warm little body close in the dark of night, all night, given that you are nocturnal. Soothing you and feeding you, tired but buoyed by the the physical and emotional connection that time affords us. (But don’t tell your dad or he may not let me sleep in on Sundays). I must admit though, that one year in to this whole you business, the party-all-night thing is getting a bit ‘tired’ and I’d love you to consider giving the sleeping-all-night thing a bit of a try instead. Just saying. No pressure! Think it over and get back to me – preferably between 6am and 7pm.

It’s been one year of watching you weaving your spell over your daddy (or “Dee Dee” as you squeal when you see him) with every flutter of your lovely long lashes. No matter how tired and cranky after a night of your nocturnal naughtiness, one glance into those beautiful big brown eyes as they peer from your perfect little face and he is molten mush.

It’s been one year of watching your big brother become ever more besotted with you. From that first, perfectly peculiar (and let’s be honest, fairly disgusting) lick he gave you at the hospital, he’s been dedicated to doing whatever he can to make you smile, which you seem to do pretty much all the time. There’s been no jealousy, no rivalry and no drama – just a sweet little boy thrilled to share his life and his things with “the most beautifulist and laughiest baby sister ever”.

It’s been one year in which my life has been changed forever, in ways too wonderful for me to ever have imagined. As a professional cynic and card carrying member of the basic black brigade, never could I have foreseen a life filled with so much colour or so many flounces, ruffles and bows. And never could I have imagined how whole-heartedly I would embrace my long buried girly side.

It’s been one year of your infectious happiness and, of watching you grow and thrive and become quite possibly the most endearing baby in the whole history of babies. One year of nurturing and protecting you and trying to be the very best mummy you could want. One year of worrying about the things I could and can and should do better. Worrying that is until, sweet girl, you smile at me with such trust that I realise the best thing I can do is simply love you.

It’s been one year since you joined our little family. A family that, during those long, long years your dad and I spent trying to conceive you and your brother, I feared we would never have. But here you both are, and you are precious gifts that your dad and I are thankful for every single day.

It’s been one year of you. And, when all is said and done, that is all that really matters.

Happy first birthday baby girl.

I love you.

Mummy

xx

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The maladroit mama and the movie star.

Today was all about introducing Devilboy to the world of the theatre at a cleverly irreligious Christmas Baby Proms performance of The Three Kings at the Sydney Opera House.  

 A stage of twinkling stars, an orchestra and singing had Devilboy and his BFF Devilboy 2 but a set of opera glasses away from becoming die-hard theatre buffs.

But the real action wasn’t on the stage. In fact it was seated about two feet away from me in the guise of a twinkling star of a different kind. Well at least she would have twinkled had she been able to move a solitary muscle in her famously frozen face. 

This “completely natural” Oscar winning movie star and her Grammy grabbing (and surprisingly hot) hubby had also decided to bring their genetically blessed tot along for some infant theatrics of the tantyless kind. And that was where it all turned to hell.

You see Devilboy, in classic form, decided to do a runner. And his mummy, in bulging gutted and lumbering form, decided to give chase… navigating a toddler strewn carpet in her attempt to capture her errant offspring.

Devilboy was quickly detained but in my elephantine and inelegant trek back to our celebrity strewn seats I nearly took the head off the superstar progeny with an ill-placed size 9 that came within centimetres of her unsuspecting little face. 

Suitably embarrassed, I apologised to the waxy one and in return was rewarded with an Oscar worthy death stare that, coming from such a freakishly frozen face, was nothing short of terrifying. How the hell you can communicate that much contempt in a face that is literally completely immobile is anyone’s guess. I mean this is a face so devoid of lines, or even pores for that matter, that it’s bordering on the otherworldly, something she puts down to the regular use of sunscreen. That is some pretty fucking impressive sunscreen -perhaps if we slathered some of that shit across the hole in the ozone layer we’d be able to stop global warming!

I’m not blaming the super sunscreened one for  her for her maternal protectiveness. In fact, I’d have reacted exactly the same – except with wrinkles and actual facial movement and a bunch of extremely foul language (muttered carefully under breath so as to not upset the kiddies)  if some clumsy twat nearly beheaded my child.

So Devilboy’s introduction to the performing arts was mostly about his moronic and mortified mummy being a mere centimetre or two away from being dragged off and beaten to death by security… and her newly aquired a-list adversery being a mere botox injection or two away from being put on display as her own doppleganger at Madame Taussaud’s.

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Acts of War

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The Curse of the Evil Pain Stick

When it comes to immunisation, it would appear that there are three kinds of parents in the world. Those who are for it, those who are against it… and those who are prepared to consider both arguments, who sit twiddling their thumbs on the fence. ME, I was just obedient and did as I was bid and immunised my precious Devilboy according to the directions of Mr. Jab from Governmentland.

Devilboy had been dutifully kept up to date on all his jabs until the dreaded triple whammy 12 month injection extravaganza which we had to postpone as he was teething and already miserable when they were due. But after a nasty little reminder/veiled threat arrived recently in the post – off we went to the doctor for the jabathon.

All forgotten. By us both.

But that was then and this is now and I can definitely say that I am no longer a fan. I have chosen a side with absolute blind prejudice and if any medical professional comes near my son brandishing their evil pain sticks again – I will forcibly jam them down their bastard throats.

Quite frankly, I think Devilboy would probably have been better off dealing with with considerable risks of measles than what he has been through in the past week. In fact, I think he may have been slightly better off being injected with ebola virus.

On Sunday morning, Devilboy broke out in a rash. A rash bad enough to take to the local medical centre where he was diagnosed with a garden variety case of hives – probably from an unknown food allergy and sent merrily on his way. No biggy, one would think.

That same afternoon we noticed that the rash had spread but had been warned this could happen. So, with a still mild fever, we tucked him into bed with a wee dose of paracetamol and figured that morning would bring us a healed and happy Devilboy.

We figured wrong.

After a fairly disturbed night he woke to a fever of 39.5 and a body covered in scarlet welts.  I took him straight to our GP. Approximately 10 seconds after arriving he was on his way to the emergency ward at RNS Hospital, as the red welts magically turned dark purple before the GP’s eyes.

After an hour or so we received confirmation that we weren’t dealing with meningococcal and I recommenced breathing… but we still had no answers and no guarantee from the Doctors that he would be ok.

As the day progressed his skin discoloured more and more. As his eyes and throat started to show signs of swelling, Devilboy was admitted and placed under observation. The following morning his hands, face and feet had also begun to swell and by afternoon had turned into tiny little balloons and he was unable to even bend a finger. His throat too had swelled and this had the hospital on high alert as there was a possibility of his airways blocking.

We sat by helplessly for DAYS as Devilboy was paraded about the hospital to a cast of thousands so they could all point and gawk and generally treat him as a sideshow freak, and us as irrelevant. None of them offered anything more intelligent than “Ewwww….That’s weird.”

THere were plenty of this “might be’s…” but we didn’t want ‘might’, we wanted a confirmed diagnosis and the little lovely treated before he got any worse.

Three full days and a constant 39 plus degree fever later we were finally delivered a diagnosis of “blahdyblahblah-impossible-to-pronounce-unheard-of-medical term.” In layman’s terms he’d suffered a massive and potentially deadly allergic reaction to a medication or virus. Given that the only medication or virus he had been exposed to were the immunisations – we have a fairly obvious target when it comes to where to point the blame. And point I will! Even if it is rude.

Of course the doctors wouldn’t actually confirm (or deny) this as the cause because if they were to admit it was the immunisations, not only would it throw their fluffy bunny ‘immunisations-are-so-great-and-no-one-ever-reacts-badly-honest’ statistics out , but it might also see them getting their arses sued off by pissed off parents with extremely sick children.

These pics don’t show the rash in all its fluorescent glory as by the time it spread and he swelled up like a balloon  thoughts of snapshots weren’t top of mind…. but you’ll get the idea.

Monday Morning

Tuesday Morning

Postscript: Devilboy had to go back to the hospital for a follow up and the doctor admitted (though absolutely off the record), that it was almost certainly a reaction to his immunisation. The medical profession tow the health department line and will seldom admit that any reaction is caused by a vaccine – no matter how obvious – as it might throw out the Govt’s pretty stats when they are trying to sell the safety of vaccines, as well as increasing the risk of legal action.

This makes it very difficult for a parent to make an informed choice when the information they are offered is not accurate – though making an informed choice isn’t really an option anyway as the penalties for choosing ‘no’ make it an impossible one to make.

I have calmed down somewhat since first ranting on the subject and am slowly moving my back to the fence as my anger subsides and Devilboy returns back to his normal nutty self. But I am still convinced that injecting babies with massive viral cocktails is a huge mistake and that immunisations should be admistered in a more gentle and accountable way.

 

Postscript. When I took my boy for his 4 year immunisations = not a single doctor would administer them (though they had towed the it wasn’t the immunisation line). He was eventually sent to a specialist in adverse reactions who diagnosed him as suffering from severe serum sickness from his MMR and advise he not be given it again as the risk of a worse reaction was too high. I’m all for immunisations (my daughter is fully immunised – but doctors avoiding telling the truth about blatantly related reactions really isn’t helping the cause)

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Imagine…

I understand that many children have imaginary friends and that they generally appear between the ages of 3 and 4. I also understand that this is generally not an indication that said child is lonely or in any way mentally disturbed. More often it is a sign that they are simply creative, imaginative children.

But… in doing my research I have yet to discover any information about the workings of a 13 month old Devilboys imagination.

Not that Devilboy has acquired, as far as I am aware, an imaginary friend. I think, for the minute, he is quite content with the real life flesh and blood friends he has.

However, about a week ago my mad little man seems to have found himself himself an imaginary block. That’s right, a block – as in a small piece of wood generally used for stacking on other small pieces of wood to create unsteady structures for the sole purpose of smashing into oblivion. At least it would be a small piece of wood, if it actually existed.

I have observed now on three separate occasions the following, admittedly entertaining, but rather peculiar scenario.

First Devilboy removes all the blocks from his block box by chucking them with wild abandon across the room – completely normal 13 month old behaviour.

But each time he has stopped to look over the blocks he has scattered on the floor with intense concentration before checking back in the empty box. He then reaches into the  box and very definitely picks up a nonexistent object and carefully places it amongst the others on the floor or on top of a one of his crude and primitive constructions (I’m talking three blocks precariously balancing  – I am not claiming Devilboy is an architectural genius here).  

I have watched him as he forgets about it for a few minutes then comes back for it, remembering exactly where he left it… even though it doesn’t exist. Twice he has even passed the imaginary block to me and then taken it back out of my empty hand to put back in the box for safe keeping. It warms my heart that at least Devilboy is showing signs of generosity and is happy to share his lunacy. (Or maybe the block is real and I jcan’t see it becasuse I’m the loon… hmmm )

I’m hoping that this means he is destined to be an easy to please child… as opposed to a low achiever. I mean, if he’s going to go to the trouble of creating an imaginary anything he could have aimed a bit higher than a small lump of wood and gone for something good like a truck (though why I would think he would invent something as normal as that when his favourite toy is the small plastic vulture that came in a box of alphabet zoo animals, and which he won’t leave home without – much to the consternation of strangers who find an angeliclooking baby boy playing with a toy vulture a trifle macabre to say the least.)

I think it a fair assumption that having an imaginary block is a clear indication of early onset insanity but when you consider the gene pool Devilboy emerged from it really isn’t all that unexpected. 😉

 

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