This week I have been mostly…

Rediscovering old tunes. It started with Hall & Oates; my sister mentioned she had recently realised how good they were, so I had another listen. She was correct & it spiralled from there. I have since found myself in voyage of musical rediscovery & I am loving it.

Since they kicked off this forgotten tune trip, Hall & Oates are the perfect place to start. My mum used to play them in the car all the time when I was a kid. I didn’t dislike the songs then, but I think they just kind of washed over me. I was busy thinking about important 13 year old things & fighting with my siblings. Who has time to pay attention to some old dudes their mum likes? Turns out mum’s old dudes were pretty cool. In particular Rich Girl & Maneater have made my frequently played list. I love that they sound simultaneously upbeat & chilled out. I’ve known plenty of rich kids who could ‘rely on the old man’s money’ & I can totally relate to the song’s portrayal of that type. However, I think what I like best is that I can close my eyes & be transported to another time. I can picture mum’s big hair & remember how safe it felt to drive around with the music up loud.

Mum & girls in beach

Next up was a song I heard a snippet of on a tv show & immediately needed back in my life. Novocaine for the soul by The Eels is another little time machine. It takes me back to the end of high school & navigating my first forays into adulthood. It is a turn it up loud & dance away your problems kind of song. It has to be said that my problems back then were laughably light; I definitely didn’t need any novocaine. The whole Beautiful Freak album has worn well. My problems may have gotten heavier, but blasting The Eels can still help lighten the load.

The wonder of shuffle dug up the gem that is 212. Azealia Banks has since revealed herself as problematic af, but I can’t stop loving this song. This is so not my usual kind of jam, but I can still remember the first time I heard this song. It blew me away. I love everything about it; strong sassy women taking no shit, killer beat & that feel good factor. For some reason this will always be a sunny day song for me. It’s perfect crank it up & get ready to go out music. So glad to have this foul mouthed banger back in my life.

Azealia Banks, 212 video

I first remember hearing Bright Eyes First Day of my Life around the time my Godson was born. The lyrics really hit me because when I looked at this tiny new person I felt like I was getting a fresh start too. I wasn’t in a great place back then & that precious new baby to focus on was a real life line. I’ve thought about this song again when special little people have entered my life & the words still hold true. When I hold a new baby who is dear to me I feel flooded with love & renewed. The arrival of my tiniest nephew brought this one back to me & I’ve been playing it a lot lately. Life is so much richer when you have little ones to cherish.

Meeting muffin for the first time

Things I can’t believe I have to say again… Part 2

I’m not sure if everyone got the same extensive instruction on manners, but my parents, grandparents etc were very clear that being polite was important. School further instilled in me the concept that there are things that are rude to comment or enquire upon. I feel like even if no one took the time to teach you social etiquette (for want of a better phrase) as a child, there are more than enough opportunities to pick up the basics as you go through life. It seems as though this is in fact an incorrect assumption on my part because tonnes of folk still have zero clue about what is appropriate.

So, let’s try & clear up another area of life on which you really should not broach. Babies. Specifically, when, if, how someone may have them. Unless someone opens this conversation with you, zip it. Wether or not someone wants to procreate is a private matter. When they might do so is none of your business. Why they haven’t already done so is not a topic that’s up for public consumption. Seriously, don’t ask.

Mainly don’t ask because that is private information & prying into other people’s lives is rude. I’ll say that one more time for anyone in doubt,

IT IS RUDE TO ASK ANYONE INTRUSIVE QUESTIONS.

Further to that don’t ask because this a sensitive subject. Regardless of a person’s circumstances there isn’t really a way to reply that isn’t awkward. People (especially women) who do not want children are sick of being judged & interrogated on that decision. If people do want children & don’t have them, there’s a reason. Trust me, they don’t want to discuss whatever that reason is with a random person. For someone people the topic of having children is so emotionally charged that talking about it can be distressing. It’s not ok to hijack a person’s privacy.

I want to have children. I love little ones, but I don’t want to explain that I’ve had multiple miscarriages. Thus far haven’t been able to get pregnant & stay that way. Hence, I don’t feel able to simply say yes I plan to have kids. Part of me dreads occasions centred around children because as much as I love celebrating little people & the wonderful people who made them, I know someone will ask that question. I’m sure I’m not the only person who feels this way. No matter how inconspicuously I shrug off the question, inside, I want to cry. Do you hear that? Your nosey questions are spoiling otherwise joyous occasions for people. I (we) don’t want your pity, we want you to exercise good manners.

Next time you consider asking someone if they’re broody or winking and saying you’re next.

STOP

No one likes that rude bitch who makes things awkward. Please try not be that person.

Cold water surrounds me now…

I’m having one of those days when my emotions feel like they might sink me. It’s like all the feelings I usually keep in check have escaped & flooded the room. It’s hard to breathe or concentrate on anything other than keeping my head above water.

Luckily, I’m a strong swimmer. I know the worst thing one can do when in rough waters is panic. I need to take deep breaths whenever possible & focus on getting to dry land. All of which means sunday hit me a little harder than I expected. Mother’s Day always gives me pause, but this time last year I was pregnant. Now, here I am, still childless. Still trying not to lose hope. It does feel hopeless at times. When all the hurt & negativity bubbles up it is hard to see a point. What am I doing? Where is life taking me?

That is when I have to reach for reason. I must force myself to get sickeningly, happy clappy. In short, I count blessings. There are many & if it doesn’t make you cringe too much, I’m going to share a few.

Love. I have love in my life.

I have many beautiful little people.

Potatoes. Boiled, roasted, chipped, baked, in scones! A world with potatoes can not be all bad.

I have a very big & very comfortable bed.

And someone I like rolling around in it with.

I’m smart. I’m funny. I’m pretty fucking tough.

I was lucky enough to be born in a place that offers me safety.

I adopted the very best puss cat.

I have access to quality healthcare.

I got to be young in the 90’s.

I’ve seen the sunset on a beach in Corfu, cuddled a koala in Brisbane, watched fireworks from castle ramparts in St Malo, walked in The Beatles footsteps in Hamburg, ice skated in a snowing Central Park, got so wasted I lost one shoe in Amsterdam & so much more.

I have sung beloved babies to sleep.

Watched them take first steps & their personalities unfold.

I have a roof over my head.

Food in my belly.

Some really cool shoes.

And plenty to look forward to.

I don’t have everything, but what I do have adds up to enough. Life goes on. Life is good.

But I ask where is the poetry…

I’ve had a rough couple weeks. Ill health (myself & others), unavoidable obligations & insomnia rearing  it’s ugly head have led to an incredibly stressed out ly. Alas, the blog has suffered. Normal service will be resumed soon. In the meantime I offer a small poetic interlude. 

I find poetry incredible cathartic. I often attempt to write away my troubles. You’d be surprised how often it helps. 

I am ready now to fall…

Dear Baby,

I still write baby even though you’d be almost grown now. You’d be pretty much a man, which is very scary. I bet you’d be amazing, though. I picture you as tall & sensitive & just a tiny bit reckless. I know we’d have butted heads, but I’d love your fire. 

 I’m feeling pretty raw this year. You have another sibling who didn’t make it to life. I have another reason to cry. I have reasons to smile too. I’m doing ok. 

I’d be better if I was buying cake & wrapping presents, but life had other plans for us. I had to learn to be strong & you were destined for somewhere more beautiful than this world. 

I’m ready now. Love, loss, life, I can take it all in my stride. I am ready to to mother a child I can hold in my arms as well as my heart. I have wonderful new little people to cherish, I have hope & I will always carry you with me. That’s enough for now.

Love always,

Mum.

Xxx

The time is now…

I’m lying on my bed with the sun streaming in my window having a lazy morning. I’m planning dinner in my head & pondering what colour to paint my nails, when it happens. A vivid flashback, of a day like this, but 16yrs ago. 

  
Like today I am resting on my bed observing the sunny world outside. Unlike today, back then I had a life growing inside me. I can smell the incense I used to burn in the flat & see the steeple of the church at the the end of the street. I feel the warmth on my face, the ache in my back & the love pounding through my veins. 

As fast as it strikes, it wanes. Part of me wants to cling to those sensations, the rest still finds these memories tender. I’ve been having these flashes a lot lately. They’re not new to me; I’ve been living with PTSD for a long time. This wasn’t a bad one, but it still leaves me feeling sadder than I did before. I’ve been thinking about why these bolts into the past have become so frequent of late & I think I know the answer.

For the first time in a very long time I am making baby plans. I have always wanted to be a Mummy. The loss only increased that desire. For years I’ve watched friends & family create beautiful little people. It’s never been the right time for me. Well, I’m 35 now and life never really gets any simpler. There is no right time. There will never be a perfect set of circumstances. So, the time is now. 

  
Or the time for planning is now. I’m getting my self and my life in shape for baba. It’s a little scary, but I don’t have any doubts. My life will never feel complete without children. It’s going to be a long campaign, but Operation Baby is go. 

And they’ll come true, impossible not to do…

I was inspired by my darling sister’s 35 before 35 post to get some goals down in black & white. However, as I’m only 3 months from the mid 30’s point I had to raise the age bar. So, here it is, the 40 things I really must get done before I enter middle age.

1 Finish my tattoo collection. I have three more designs that need to get out of my head & onto my body. 

2 Develop my stigma fighting business plan.

3 Have babies.

4 Take a ride in a hot air balloon. 

  
5 Learn to drive. Yes, I am a 34yr old woman who is terrified of driving.

6 Buy all the Irregular Choice shoes.

  
7 Rescue animals from factory farming.

8 Perform in a burlesque show. Chorus line would cool.

9 Visit Jenna in Philadelphia.

10 Master Japenese cooking. I need to know I can have yasai gyoza whenever I feel the urge.

11 Visit Tagalooma with Athena.

12 Adopt a retired greyhound.

13 Lots & lots of surface piercings.

14 Execute the cutest pregnancy announcement ever.

15 Cook Xmas dinner for my entire family.

16 Take a break in one of those beach huts on stilts in the ocean. 

  
17 Write for Skorch.

18 Mix my own perfume. 

19 Teach Billy to swim properly.

20 Get a book deal.

21 Check out those big heads on Easter Island.

22 Send the perfect family xmas cards. 

23 Make Danilo go on the big romantic xmas wheel. 

  
25 Perfect one ballroom dance & trot it out at every single occasion.

26 Take a romantic break in a Scottish castle.

27 Learn Sign language.

28 Fall utterly in love with more nieces & nephews. Get to it, siblings!

29 Get a professional portrait painted of my beautiful Bronan. 

  
30 Rock the Big Apple with my girls.

31 Find miraculous cure for all my health issues. 

32 Take my little ones to Disney World.

33 See Morrissey live.

34 Finish Athena’s books before she gets too old for them.

35 Try synchronised swimming. 

36 Finally see Much Ado About Nothing performed at Bard in the Botanics. 

37 Send random mystery flowers to folk who would appreciate them. 

  
38 Learn to code (at least well enough to snazz my blog).

39 Take my Mum to Austria to do the Sound of Music tour. 

40 Be the best Mummy ever!

Any advice or suggestions on who to achieve my goals is most welcome. Wish my luck.