So long,Farewell, Auf Wiedersehen, Goodbye

This must be the blog with the shortest life ever but have realised that i started it on a whim and suddenly, just like that dont see the point in continuing.

I thought i might make a few friends but to me now it makes more sense to work on that in a physical world rather than a virtual one.

I thought i could talk about my family while maintaining my anonymity but now feel that that is very restrictive and i dont want to bare all here so it is sort of catch 22 isnt it?

Thank you to the few who did bother to read , good luck to all of you and to all a good night.

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Will i survive?

 Today i feel really tired and dejected. Helpless in fact is the right word. In the little more than a year that i have been a mother, i dont think i’ve had a more difficult day.

Twin2 is on a semi hunger strike and just refuses to eat. On top of that he is badly constipated. One is probably causing the other though he has been constipated even when he was eating well. It is getting to the point where i am wondering if there is something wrong. The most difficult part about all of this is that nothing i do seems to help. I have tried various delicacies to try and tempt him to eat but nothing seems to work. Every meal is carrying on for two to three hours and at the end of it, nothing much has entered the baby. This has been going on for about a week now. The worst day has been today where not only was he refusing to eat but every two minutes he’d get down on his haunches and strain and strain to do his job but was unsuccessful. Seeing him struggle like this is just incredibly painful. I have tried prune juice, syrup of figs and other things that were recommended but none of them are working. To see your child suffer like this and not be able to do anything is not something i would wish on anyone.

Now i understand that he is not terrible ill and this is probably something very small in the greater scheme of things but still this is the first time i’ve felt truly helpless. All the other troubles that we have had to face so far ( including 10 days of gastroentritus where i had to change 72 nappies in 4 days) seemed manageable. We followed certain rules and the trouble passed. This time i dont know what to do. This evening i had to lie him across my legs, force his mouth open and spoon some porridge into him as that was the only way anything was going down. I felt so miserable watching him fight me. In between when i let him go to give him a break, he was clinging to me crying his heart out and i could feel mine breaking.

No one told me parenting would be this difficult. I lived in a fantasy dreamworld through out my pregnancy with flashes of favourite baby scenes from movies to make me smile. If i did reflect on all the hard work that lay ahead in bringing up a child, it was always with the attitude that i would manage it the best way i could. After all it was like being thrown into a swimming pool, you had to try and swim even if you didnt know how.

Today i’m not sure if i will be able to keep afloat. I feel myself giving up and then i wonder, if i fall at the first hurdle, how am i going to survive the rest, the potty training, the sleeping by themselves, the teething, the various other milestones to cross before they go to school, the leaving them at school, the teenage years, the college years and every other event down the horizon that i havent even thought about.

Babies come into your life and it is end of life as you know it. My favourite hymn has always been ‘One day at a time’ which has the line ‘ Give me the strength to do everything that i have to do’. That has always given me inspiration. Today however i feel so drained. The thought of doing this all over again tomorrow makes me never want to get up. Am i weak ? Maybe. I just feel like i’m drowning at the moment and there is no lifebelt in sight.

Misnomer

How dare the powers that be name a beautiful silvery grey nail polish ‘Monday Morning’ ?

The only colour deserving that moniker is blue.

Prude to Proud

Many people ask me how my life has changed since i became a mother. Oh in all the usual ways i reply. One that  i certainly didnt expect though was that i would become less conscious of my body.

I have always been a rather shy person, preferring to be seen not heard if it was really necessary to meet new people. As far as clothes were concerned, i was only interested in those that covered up most of me ,especially those areas i was rather ashamed of – now to think of it, quite  a few in fact. I thought my shoulders were too broad, my hips too wide,my legs too masculine, my ankles too thick, bum too big etc etc. As  you can infer there were not many parts left to be happy with and so most of my clothes were certainly not in fashion. I remember refusing even to model the most modest of swimsuits in front of my mother and a visit to the pool involved a sprint from the changing room to the water so that as few people as possible had a glimpse of what i looked like with very little on.

When i reached my teens, things didnt get better. I developed a hunch to hide the fact that i was developing breasts and i suffered agony too painful to bear when my mum suggested we go bra shopping. I lived my teens mostly in jeans or salwar kameezes. I never experimented with the tights that were in fashion then or any sort of  in vogue clothing.

When i got married, my lingerie in the first few months was not the kind that would set any one’s pulse racing and i feel sorry for my poor husband. I would  have made more of an efffort if i felt more confident of myself.

Well things have finally changed. It all began in the delivery room when i realised that since i was having twins there were double the number of people than would  normally be present and all of them had a ringside view of me with my legs far apart and nothing on beneath the waist. I was in too much pain to care then and  that feeling seems to have remained with me. I dont know what it is but the fact that i have terrible stretch marks and a droopy tummy has somehow liberated me. I still dress quite modestly but am not so bothered if people can see that i dont have a flat stomach. Maybe it is because i know that i have two children and most people dont expect a mother of two to have a perfect figure. Maybe i have finally grown up and realised that i was being too critical of myself. I deeply regret that now. I was not overweight and i now know that most of my complexes were self inflicted.  Life is too short to worry about how other people look at you all the time. I regret not experimenting more in the my teens or even my twenties. I have all the time in the world to dress like a grandma.

Now, i look more for something i really like and that suits me rather than making sure i buy something that does not highlight any of the areas i’m not happy with. I have to admit my husband has a lot to do with this. He is a darling man who says i look good even when i know i couldnt possibly. He and my children love me no matter what and that has set me free. It’s a wonderful feeling.

Desperate Times

need desperate measures.

Last evening i waxed eloquent for a whole 5 minutes on the beauty of a dustbin, all to convince twin2 to eat his dinner.Certainly not something i ever predicted for myself  when i was asked at every job interview ~” What do you see yourself doing in 10 years time? ”

Oh, the joys of motherhood. It certainly makes inventors of even the most unimaginative, dont you think?

The Green Eyed Monster

I remember watching an episode of the sitcom Everybody Loves Raymond in which the wife Debra fires her nanny, who is absolutely perfect in every way, just because she feels the children like her better than they do their own mother. Boy do I understand that feeling now.

We havent reached that stage yet. I can see that i am still top dog in my babies’  lives and that they are not yet choosing her over me. The problem is that i am a lot more possessive than i ever realised. I dont mind her being affectionate with them but when she hugs them for too long and calls them ‘putha’ ( a term of endearment which can be taken literally to mean ‘my son’) i can feel my blood start to boil. I can see that my babies always want to come to me first and that only if for some reason i can’t oblige do they turn to her. She, to give her credit, does not try to hog them. She usually  gives me the chance first to soothe them when they are hurt and hold them when they just want a hug but i find that is not enough for me. I want to be their sun, their moon,their stars – just like they are for me. I want to be their everything.

I thought i was a possessive wife but this is a lot worse. I didnt know i could be this greedy. Lord have mercy, having children is certainly an eye opener at all levels.

When you’re happy

and you know it  – Clap your hands. This is what i sing to my little taddies. They love to clap their hands but haven’t understood the connection between being happy and expressing it by clapping their hands. They show their happiness in much more unique ways.

 Twin1’s method is to crawl across the room as quickly as possible but his crawling is not  your garden variety crawling..oh no..he adds his personal touch to it by placing one hand across the other and swaying his head from side to side doing the best imitation of a little dancing Chinese dragon i have ever seen. You have to see it to believe it.

Twin2 shows his happiness by shaking his head from side to side. We get giddy looking at him but he shakes his head for so long and with such vigour that sometimes i’m afraid it might fall off.Play a little music and twin2 will do his little dance of bouncing up and down accompanied by his head shake. What can i say..he has natural rhythm.

These are their favourite methods of showing their happiness. They also love to roll over each other and crawl all over with their heads to the ground like little moles. I fear for their safety and watch carefully that they dont bang into the furniture but i dont stop them.

And finally when twin2 is overwhelmed with happiness and cant contain his joy he comes to take a big bite out of mamma. I have lots of little teeth marks all over my body. I may be scarred for life  but since they are the proof of my baby’s happiness, i wouldnt have it any other way!

Baby love

 is the best kind there is.

I hug twin1, he nestles closer to me and buries his head into my shoulder. I tickle him and he chuckles curling himself into a tight ball. Twin2 wants to get into the action and pulls himself onto my lap.Now i am holding on tightly to two warm, wriggling bodies and i decide the safest thing is to get onto the mat.

After a lengthy tickling session we decide a small game of hide and seek is in order. Twin2 hides behind the sofa while his brother and i crawl about searching for him. He is always in the same place but you’d never guess that we know where he is with all the time we take to look for him; twin1 helps by peering under the table and in between the gaps in the floor boards. Finally we find him and as i yell ‘ There he is’ , out gallops this little bundle of energy screeching with joy to think that he has fooled us. The babies then change places and now twin2 joins me in my search.

A little later we sit down to watch mummy’s program on telly. Twin1 crawls into my lap and plays with my fingers while twin2 is engrossed in trying to make the little animals pop out on his Farm toy. 10 minutes later twin1 jumps down to explore and as soon as he’s off my lap, twin2 stands and lifts his hands up to be picked up and cuddled.

My lap is full and so is my heart. I couldnt ask for more.

To borrow a few lines from the Temptations:

I’ve got sunshine on a cloudy day,

When it’s cold outside, i’ve got the month of May.

I guess you’d say ,what can make me feel this way…

Baby love, Baby love….Baby love.

I feel good

and it’s all because someone took the trouble to smile at my babies.

   I’ve been grumbling to Mr Toad that i was sure this was the only country where you can walk on the road with two babies who are cooing and reaching out their hands to people and those very same people will ignore them and walk by without smiling. Does it cost so much to smile at a little baby, i cried. The people here are as cold as their winter.

His response was that these days people are afraid to look at other people’s children. You never know what the parents’ reaction will be. They may think you are a paedophile. He has been getting funny looks from a couple he sees everyday on the way to work and whose baby he smiles at. He has decided to stop.

It was very depressing to hear that cynical tirade. What sort of a world have i brought my children into? These days most adults are so afraid of children that they don’t stop and interfere when they see them bullying other little ones. See a hooded teenager defacing a bus stop…cross over to the other side and walk away as quickly as possible. Don’t get involved, they aren’t your children. What happened to the thinking that it took a village to raise a child? Was this behaviour  now extending to tiny, harmless babies as well?

Well this morning, one woman at least refused to subscribe to these views, and actually smiled at my babies, waved at them and called them ‘gorgeous’. That’s all it took to make my day. To believe that there are still some people out there who will look you in the eye and acknowledge the simple, undemanding beauty of a child.

Thank you lady for stopping me from brooding on all the wrongs of this world and bringing to mind Nat King Cole’s velvet voice singing

” You’ll find life is still worthwhile, if you just smile “

Tradition,Tradition

shouts Tevye, my favourite character in my favourite movie ‘Fiddler on the Roof’. According to him, the only reason the fiddler on the roof does not fall off and break his head is…you got it…Tradition.

    Now this may seem a bit old fashioned but i am actually longing for a little display of some sort of  tradition. I know many people laugh at old customs and sit through them only to humour their loved ones.They dont see the relevance or even understand the significance of them.To them it’s often mumbo jumbo and they are willing to endur a small ceremony only to get at the good parts afterwards – the food and the drink.

  I have often felt the same way. The family i was born into is very big on tradition. I dont mean big religious ceremonies just something to mark every event. Houses must be blessed, new cars must be blessed even new jewellery must be blessed. No birthday or anniversary is left unnoticed and unfeted even if the only celebration is opening a bottle of champagne. My mum always lit a candle in front of the Sacred Heart when we had our exams on. We had to kiss the picture of Jesus or touch the crucifix before leaving the house. I often felt a bit embarrassed at this overt display of every emotion and thought that as long as you acknowledged it in your heart, there was really no need to put on a performance.

    It is good advice to be careful what you wish for because then i got married into a family that mostly goes about its everyday business without feeling the need to mark every milestone and i hate the ordinariness of my days. We lived for a little while with the inlaws before we bought our own house and i longed for the tradition of eating together every night and discussing our day. All i got was a whole lot of coming and going and eating in front of the telly. Birthdays went by and i longed for a little bit of fuss and all i got was a buffet meal. When i was expecting, from all sides my pregnant friends reported  having seven month ceremonies and being given saris: I had nothing of the sort. And that’s when it hit me….i was a tradition junkie after all. I wanted to publicly acknowlege all the big and not so big milestones in life. I didnt want every day to be just another one with nothing to look forward to. I didnt want my children to feel that achieving something, however small, was not worth celebrating.Most of all i wanted the joy that  fills your heart when you know you are not alone; that you are a not an island; that something that matters to you, matters enough to someone else that they make an effort to celebrate with you.

  That is when i decided that i would have to make more of an effort with my own family. Make sure that i didnt let anything pass by unnoticed and unrecorded. For all of us are like that fiddler on the roof,maintaining a fine balance against all odds and a little display of love and support everyday keeps us sane and happy. And so i join in with Tevye  ‘Tradition Tradition’ or as he sings it ..’Tradishun!’

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