Sunday, March 29, 2009


Feeling so... well, everything, actually - but for some other Mummies - click on the Stellan button to find out more; and follow link to Audrey's story then the link to her cousin, Luke. Grab a hanky and weep knowing that God is in control and that even tragedy can spur on our faith and be full of beauty because of ohers' reliance on Him. I'm even more convinced now that even tiny babies can change the world for the better; they can make a BIG difference.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Pregnancy update

Okay... (to self) deep breath...

It's time!

Time for what?

To reveal how I'm going:

This photo was about 12 weeks- over a month ago now. And things have kind of changed - I've had to not only begin to wear the belly belt but I'm in between the smallest and middle sized part AT 16 WEEKS!!! I'm grateful for the belly bands I bought earlier, too, because they're now needed to cover not only the belly- midriff part but the zip where the belly belt is. This is the first pregnancy which I've actually had enough pants with buttons to be able to use it.

Unbeknownst to most, I've also got those "badge of honour" stretch marks and I'm going through that earie feeling of stretching skin...

I still have nausea in the morning / during the night but at least I haven't actually been vomitting this time:)...

I'm short of breath quite a bit...

My nose and throat feel kind of stuffy, especially in the morning and late evening...

I go from feeling freezing (wanting to stay dressed in my flannie pjs and newly acquired soft and cuddly dressing gown / robe all day - something I can't bring myself to do to meet the school bus in the morning:)) to being sooo hot I'm changed into a tank top and shorts, and then back again (Before and after yesterday's party, I was asleep in aforementioned PJs!)...

I'm already finding I need to be careful how I sit, stand and change position, and as for sleeping - well, I've taken Claire Hall's advice and taught myself to sleep on my left side, but it requires several "aides" to keep me there and comfy ( pillow between the legs, a rolled up towel+sheet behind my back, a lavender eye pillow to help me breathe deeply and relax, especially around 3-6am when I'm an insomniac after finally succumbing to a visit to the toilet; and a hot water bottle either at my back or other places)...

My blood pressure isn't high, thankfully; rather I need to increase my salt intake slightly (and only for this trimester) to help my blood pressure which registers low when I stand - hence the giddiness!...

Aching "milk-producers", but grateful that things are kicking in in this area - I love breastfeeding:)...

And absolute fatigue and here's where the rubber hits the road, so to speak:

Emotionally, I'm feeling spent, especially the last few days. I feel as though my life needs to slow down even more, and I'm wondering how to do that. I want to be able to cope -with everything, mind you. I want to be able to keep helping those who need help. I want to put more effort into my marriage, my kids, my God-given creativity, my girly girliness(!!), I want to have everything ready for the baby NOW because pregnancy has previously been harder on my body than giving birth and having a newborn.

I know Gary will be around for the last few weeks to help me but I'd love for that time to be a really special time for Declan and his Daddy in particular before he starts Prep next year and is away from home 5 days a week. I'd also really like Gary to have a well-deserved rest during this time after being such a diligent, committed and caring teacher for 10+ years. (Even as I write this, it's 9pm and he's out at school preparing for the week:)

I'm feeling lonely and somewhat isolated. I don't know what I'd do without Saminda and our very frequent phone catch-ups and DMCs during Playschool!! And it's been great to watch Declan and Elijah develop their mateship with full-on adventures as pirates, astronauts, and overall protectors...But I don't want to wear out my welcome, even with someone as close as a sister.

I want to connect better but I'm tired and sad and not very good company: I actually think I need help to cope with this stage in my life but I'm finding it hard to say that in real life, and then what do I need help with? I'm not exactly sure...

I probably need people to stand with me; to help me laugh; to help me let out my pent-up tears; to love the process of pregnancy as I journey through it; I AM overweight so pregnancy doesn't look on me like it looks in the books or on sites as a beautiful blossoming belly that is well-defined as `baby' - quite frankly, I endured so many humiliating times because people (strangers and acquaintances) asked me when I was due or if I was expecting - before I was pregnant. I feel like a whale, and I'm grieving (again) that my dream of being a classy pregnant one just isn't to be.

I'm grieving that it isn't twins (no, I'm not insane - I just dreamed we would have 2 boys and 2 girls).

I'm grieving because last year when "Cathy becoming pregnant" was on my friends' prayer lists, there was so much encouraging talk about not being alone in pregnancy; of having an incredible support network; but, for a whole variety of reasons, this now feels like a delicate spider's web that has endured some very rough weather and strong winds - emotionally, I'm hanging on by a thread - actually, by 4 threads - to my Heavenly Father (Psalm 34:18 "The Lord is close to the broken-hearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit"), to my husband, to my family, and my kindred spirits - sisters in Christ. For these, I'm grateful.

I'm unsure about the actual birth this time. Talking to a midwife yesterday at the party who works at Hervey Bay hospital (and who I first met in hospital after Declan's birth:)), she remorsefully explained that so many things were different now, for the worse. I treasured Saminda's home birth last year and wondered if we could go this way, too but with an impending law about midwives making homebirth virtually impossible, I'm grieving the lack of options available; the lack of choice BUT I also know that I know that I know that God, my Heavenly Father has had His Hand on both my previous births and that this one will be no exception !

There are others in "blogland" who are going through extraordinarily tough times; Cora's parents being the ones that come to mind as an example, so it seems rather egocentric and selfish to actually post this; but at the same time, I hope that my daughter/s down the track realise that this is real; that the story of my life isn't all smiles and that it's okay if, when it's their turn, to go through these seasons; that its normal; that, no matter what, God promises to walk with us through the hard times, implying that He'll get us safely to the other side not leave us there to sink.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Family Night Friday March 20th, 2009

Gary organised smores; a couple of Morning Coffee biscuits with 2 toasted marshmallows and a piece of "Furry Friends" chocolate sandwiched or squished in between until the chocolate melts - YUM. The kids really enjoyed finding sticks, turning them into "glowsticks", and making patterns in the air like we do with sparklers. I tried to take a photo of myself to prove I was there, too, but they didn't turn out at all (ahem) complimentary... It was lovely, especially because there was a nip in the air and it began to rain ever so gently - we were set up in the carport away from the rain.

It was a relaxing way to end a week, which, for me, has been full-on:
* taking Chloe to the dentist on Monday;
* spending most of the day on Tuesday doing the groceries (yes, it takes a long time but at least I can still do it - good muscle tone developing in the arms:) then a growing time at "Nurture", the ladies' group that happens every fortnight at Belinda's with Mychel as leader and Saminda there for the first time this year;
* Wednesday was 6 hours in the kids' room and 2 hours doing the play verandah and vacuuming;
* Thursday was a lovely morning with the Fern boys and Declan, giving Saminda time to breathe;
* then Friday (finally feeling awake after 12:30pm!), cleaning the toilet, washing up, doing 3 loads of laundry, bringing up one dry load, sorting and folding and putting away, supervising Declan's bodypaint, reading Max Lucado's "If Only I Had A Green Nose", after Declan declared he wanted a green nose!, feeding us both, supervising what he calls "pin play" when he takes my sewing pins and sticks them into somewhere soft - his preference was the couch but we agreed on the small red cushion, making dinner, walking to town to do some banking, pick up some school books for Chloe and a mended cushion for Gary's classroom - I might put in here that I had a protesting little boy who didn't want to walk and didn't give up his protest until we reached our first stop in Bazaar Street - 7 blocks from home:( - at least the walk home was happier:) and dozing upright while Declan watched some Charlie and Lola on DVD from Saminda (thank-you for knowing I needed this!!) and resting on the bed during Playschool - I wish that went longer!!!

Today being Saturday, I've been awake since 5- ish, breakfasted and ... am blogging -Yay!! Rock and Roll is playing through the DVD player while the kids play - Declan with pin play again, Chloe with Amy, one of her large dolls from Nanna. Gary, I think, is reading. We have a birthday party to go to from 11am-1pm and we have to remember to vote. Dinner is leftovers and I'm dearly hoping for a sleep this afternoon and maybe a well-worn girly classic this evening. Happy Saturday to all!
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Face (and Body) Paint Friday

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Saturday, March 14, 2009

Spotlight on Chloe...and friends:)

Gary and I took Chloe to see "The Wizard of Oz" stage production this afternoon with Mr Fern as the lion and Saraya as a sweet little munchkin. It was fantastic and it has caused me to reflect on the opportunities I had as I was growing up:
* private tuition for ballet (3 years),
piano (3 years),
violin (8 years),
horse-riding (4 years),
Speech and Drama (11 years-AMEB and Trinity College),
swimming (learn to swim classes then later 3 years of intense training),
tennis (1 year, I think)

* Girls' Brigade (1 year),
Guides (4 years),
horse-riding week-long camps at Mt Tambourine,

* extra-curricular school activities: school orchestras (8 years),
school choir (4 years),
Concert Choir (combined with Boys' Grammar) (3 years),
ISCF (4 years- and including Surf Camp, Study Camp, Discipleship Camp and Schoolies),
Interact (1 year),
German dancing, Japanese dancing (2 1/2 years),
netball (which I didn't like at either of 2 schools,
softball, which I did),
ran (and lost:)) the 1500m 3 years running because my house was awarded 1 point for participation- I just had to survive and just qualify for a jogging pace- go England house!!!

* director / coordinator/ actress for regularly-performing church drama group,
church choir (alto),
youth orchestra and youth choir,
youth group,
co-leader of Yr 4-7 weekly group,
organising camps and excursions, interactive lessons, craft, music for them,
organising outreach concerts and events,
Youth Encounters, prayer retreats, and other youth group camps, Leadership Team for Youth Group

* Christian clowning course, and over 50 performances over 5 years in 5 towns,
amateur theatre prodution of the English comedy "As Long As They're Happy", playing a 16-year old head-over-heels with a swooner,
dressing as Sandy in "Grease" and miming and dancing to "You're The One That I Want - Oo, Oo, Ooo" :),
and as Marilyn Monroe doing "Diamonds Are A Girls' Best Friend" , (and yes, I have proof of these daring, out-of-character dramatic pursuits:)

* School play in a competition at the Arts Theatre as one of the leads in a play about the suffragettes -- I loooovvveedd this, but didn't feel alternative enough to take drama in Senior - something I regret - instead doing English, German, French, Maths in Society, and Ancient and Modern History... something else I now very much regret is not following through on sitting for my letters in Speech and Drama- I had prepared for 2 years for Year 7 and pulled out under stress in my final year of Uni, during my final prac and the graduation of the Clowning course - everything was culminating in the same end-of-year time frame, and I figured I'd be able to pick it up again later - not realising as I do now that, should one move to Maryborough, it would not be an option - I never dreamt I'd leave Brisbane - how things change!

I'm grateful to my parents for this endless list of opportunties- the cost, the driving, the $10,000p.a. for my highschool education at Brisbane Girls' Grammar, the patience of listening to practices and lines and ideas; amidst all this, I also wonder about my own children and the opportunities we'll be able to expose them to; how will they find their niche if we can't manage to find the affordable, available opportunities?
Still, they're young, and I'm sure God has great things for them...The first song they listen to as they go to sleep is "God will make a way where there seems to be no way-He works in ways we cannot see - He will make a way for me - He will make a way".. Reminder to self: have faith; we're in the palm of His Hand:)
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