Life as Mommy, The Rollercoaster aka Life

Summer Meltdown

We’re going to blame all of this on the heat that my body (and mind) are simply not prepared for this year.

We had a pretty busy weekend of birthday parties at the beach, and celebrating Father’s Day with Grandpa at the beach… aka we both got too much sun this weekend. Admittedly the kid had waaaay more fun than I did with a pair of dolphins and a floating obstacle course, but it was a good time with family and friends and a much needed break from regular weekend “adulting” for me.

Last night he of course pulled his now standard “Mummy it’s hot in my room, can I turn on your air conditioning and stay with you?” Fast forward to about 30 minutes later when we’re both snuggled in my bed chit chatting about the week ahead before lights out.

“Mummy, this year hasn’t been going so well and I thought I was cursed, but it really looks like it’s getting better.”

I hate to say but I felt like all the wind had been knocked out of me. Why on earth would my kid feel like he’s cursed?! I apologized to him for sometimes being the “fire breathing dragon” and for not always being able to do the things and go where he wants to go. He stopped me. He explained that he was talking about things like getting kicked in the face at Kung Fu, getting a black eye from crashing into someone playing football, and a few other embarrassing moments he’s experienced this year so far.

Reality check, Mom. Your baby is officially gone (except for when he’s sick). These are his experiences and interpretations – that are completely independent of you.

I have to say that despite understanding that he will grow up, no matter how not-ready-for-any-of-this-dear-god-puberty-is-next I am, I’ve been in a funk all day. Responsibility for someone else who becomes less reliant in the immediate ways every day makes you question your “enoughness”. (Thanks R-L for the unknowing nudge)

It’s that voice that makes you wonder “am I enough?” and you better believe it doesn’t stop at the kid. Am I enough for this job/task? Am I enough for my friendships/relationships? That voice that makes you question whether or not you’re doing the right thing or making the right choice – what if I’m setting myself up for disaster/disappointment… AGAIN? The voice has been very loud lately – for those who matter, I know you don’t mind my unusually quiet nature lately but this is it. For those who mind, you don’t matter.

It’s a maddening voice. The one that has fully written the dramatic end of a story before the ink of the introduction has barely had time to dry. The one that has firmly decided that the story is there to be written – I’m just not in it. The one that has a loving relationship with sleep and pretending there are no missed calls or messages awaiting responses. The one that makes me oh so very tired.

I’m working on my “presence” with the kid these days, not merely existing and going through the motions in the same space. Some days, like today… it’s hard. He assured me that he will love me forever and always be there for me. Then he rolled over and went to sleep.

Be like the kid. Moments of pure joy.

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Life as Mommy, The Rollercoaster aka Life

It’s been a while…

… and this is nothing new around here, although I will admit this absence has been an extended one. I’ll spare you the usual apologies and just give you the executive summary of what’s happened since we last spoke…

We lost my grandfather… I lost more than a grandparent and miss the friend he had become in my adult life every.single.day. The house was sold, we moved… a nice townhouse in the same neighbourhood has been our home for a year now… it’s nice, but it’s not quite “home”. The kid points this out rather often, especially since the fur babies had to go to new homes due to space restrictions and such. Despite that he’s great – really great – and now at chin height he makes sure to drive me insane at every possible opportunity, as my grey hair (cleverly hidden by lots of very red hair dye) will attest.

What else… hmm… there have been some awesome professional opportunities, which all of course come with more responsibilities – cue the wrinkles on my forehead for these. They all come with their own unique challenges, but I can honestly say they are never boring and I’m constantly challenged to learn something new and watch my language everyday.

Personally… not much has changed and at the same time, everything has… funny how that works. My current year worth of existential crisis is due in part to the impending 40th birthday and coming to terms with some of the not fun parts of “getting older”. I’ll spare you the gory details, but I am grateful for the friends who keep me grounded with the occasional pep talk or lecture, as the case may require. There’s been a lot of reflection involved, not in the regret sense, but more in the understanding the consequences of choices and how all those moving parts come together to put me right here… and the parts of “here” that I want to keep and the ones that just must go.

Naturally, “here” is also temporary and while the next “here” is still to come, part of the mind does wander down the roads of the hopes and dreams long since abandoned. I’ve chalked it up to the way of things, where survival with any semblance of sanity means adapting to the way things are instead of the way you wanted them to be. I’ve reluctantly accepted that this is probably the source of the well of sadness that never seems to dry up, and seems to fill up a little more with every dream that gets put on the shelf in the cupboard of the dark recesses of the mind.

The one that ripples like a disturbed puddle that’s just had a pebble dropped in it when a glimmer of hope that maybe, just maybe, one of those boxes on that dark shed could possibly be dusted off.

The sound the coin makes when you drop it in the wishing well turns into the echo of moments, moments that had promise but were really only just passing moments for whatever reason or season.

Reminding myself that sometimes giving up isn’t failure, it’s recognizing futility and deciding that the road isn’t worth the journey. And then the silence…

Doesn’t make it any less sad, and sometimes quite lonely, but does challenge me to still just enjoy the moments with all the joy and heartbreak, because “here” will be there whether I do or not – and even with the heartbreak, who really wants to miss the joy?

I guess today I’m just a little sad. It’s been a rough week, personally but even more so professionally. Really wanted to talk to my grandfather about it. He’d know just what to say even if he didn’t have all the answers. So yes, today I’m just sad.

Tomorrow is a whole new day, let’s see what happens then…

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This is how I’ve been feeling since school started earlier this month.

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More pressure and responsibility at work, the kid in “big school” with a full day schedule – coffee is my friend. Special shout out to my new favourite – Whitfield Hall Blue Mountain Coffee – it keeps me going during his schedule and mine. It’s funny how the days can feel longer when going through the motions of handling responsibilities. Continue reading

Life as Mommy, The Rollercoaster aka Life

Keeping up with the kid…

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Life as Mommy, The Rollercoaster aka Life

What’s your name?

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I had a moment this morning with another parent at school that would have been awkward, maybe even embarrassing, two years ago. This morning it was just run of the mill. Continue reading

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Life as Mommy, The Rollercoaster aka Life

“Responsitility” 

In true 5 year old style, J has a way with words. In other words, he has his own versions as the title suggests. I try not to laugh while attempting to offer gentle corrections, but I often give up e.g. Destickable Me. You can figure it out. Today’s word is brought to you courtesy of Gramma giving J a fish tank. Thanks Mum *side eye* Continue reading

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Life as Mommy, The Rollercoaster aka Life

Talk to Me…

.. This one is my new mantra with the kid. I’ve reluctantly accepted he’s at the stage of many new feelings and very little clue of how to handle them. So lately I hear myself saying all too often “talk to me baby, tell mummy how you’re feeling”.

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The Rollercoaster aka Life

The magic of takeout…

… So after yesterday’s post I’ve been a bit tightly wound. It’s been a stressful time at work and at home lately and to top it off little one has been sick. I would like to thank the Universe for the infinite wisdom of having Gramma take charge of the little one and the dinner invite from my literal oldest (read longest known) friend.

We all have a friend who is always in your heart, even if not always in your presence. Our parents were friends before we were ever born and we lived next door to each other fresh from the womb. Graffiti and school hi jinks aside, we’ve always been a curious mirror of each other. He is that friend who magically appears at moments in life when one or the other is having a moment. Just like he appeared that night at the hospital when J was born.

We haven’t spoken or seen each other in months, but a feeling and a phone call made for a quiet evening of Chinese takeout and “what’s going on with you?”. It is refreshing to have friends you can always learn from and have a calming effect, no matter the turmoil in your soul at the time. Despite the challenges we both currently face, mutual acceptance of the people we are as well as unwavering support (including the obligatory bullshit call outs) will always be what I treasure most. We’ve both been on very interesting personal journeys and being able to sit and share the ups and the downs is priceless.

Friends who are family. Treasure them, love them, support them and honour them as the lights in the darkness. In silly and serious. The challenges are still there, but that understanding and encouragement is probably the best gift friends can give each other in this life. Love you… One foot in front of the other.

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