#925 Funny convo sends me roaring

“I don’t know what’s wrong today.”

Those are the words a fellow Mum said today as she walked away from her daughter during her swimming class alongside baby girl. Her daughter was upset, not listening, not cooperating, and as this Mum walked away coining this phrase, she smiled tensely.

Lady, I hear you. Those words are the living mantra of ALL of parenthood.

“I don’t know what’s wrong today.”

As I laughed internally at the very true nature of those words, feeling sorry for the Mum, and thinking I too have had those really hard days, I realised that it’s a sentiment not just reserved for children… but for adults as well. Because we are big kids too, aren’t we?

Sometimes we’re hungry. Sometimes we’re tired. Sometimes we’re sick. Sometimes it’s the Moon. Other times it’s our raging hormones. Whatever is the case, we too have those moments, those days (even those weeks or months, even) where we say –

“I don’t know what’s wrong (insert timeframe).”

Well, funnily enough, my timeframe was today, this morning in fact, and I had been in the worst and shittiest mood WAY before baby girl’s swimming lesson was even in the horizon. And no they weren’t post-holiday ending blues. It was just drab. Super cold. I was still sick. In fact I was copping it bad since coming back. Baby girl was also sick. She was staying home from kinder because of that fact. We were a WHOLE LOTTA FUN TO BE AROUND. And I was also super-duper-super-duper-super-duper erratic and emotional.

A REALLY bad combo.

I was having a whine, a moan, while all 3 of us were in the car together – Hubbie, baby girl and I. We were in between heading out and heading in, to be honest we had NO IDEA what we were doing…

I had already received a message from my sister about some weekend plans, and asking when we could talk… but I was so cranky-pants, that I just couldn’t. I don’t like getting on the phone to my Mum or sister and being in one of those states, because it doesn’t help anyone, and I just hate putting them in that zone. It’s not like I’m sad, or I need help… I’m just shitty. I’m upset, then I get them upset, and then EVERYONE is upset. It’s just no good.

So while we were in the car doing absolutely nothing, I texted her quickly. Just a ‘hey, all good, I’ll call you later because I feel like shit to be honest XO’ type message.

I soon got one back telling me that she was feeling particularly sick and crappy too – oh no… was it going around? I sent her my well wishes in return, and then, had a funny exchange with Hubbie that quite frankly, made me smile. He didn’t find it too funny which made it more so (HA HA HA).

So I decided to text my sister, hoping she might find the humour in it:

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Oh, how I roared with laughter at the ‘Nah!’ Baby girl was in the back asking “what did Ja Ja say?” (her pet name to my sister) and then I showed Hubbie the message, laughing out loud even more.

All of my anger, all of my negative emotions, all of the crappy-ness of the day just flew out and away from me at my loud guffaws, and I swear, I immediately felt lighter. I was happy to learn that Sis did, too.

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And suddenly I was grateful. I was grateful I had reached out when I was feeling most shitty and the least like I wanted to reach out. And in doing so, both mine, and my Sister’s days became a little brighter, a little lighter.

It just goes to show, sometimes sharing the angst with those you love, can actually help…

And if you’re lucky, you might be able to laugh about it too 🙂

 

#921 The ferry ride we fought for

The immediate theme apparent today soon after waking up?

“God help those trying to drive into the MONA ferry area and find parking for longer than 2 hours.”

Firstly, baby girl was not well. She went from absolutely fantastic and bubbly upon waking, to a seriously fast decline of blah.

And although we repeatedly asked her if she was sick, or sore, or was going to vomit, she continually declined the suggestions, saying she wanted to go on the boat.

We tentatively left the house, watching her carefully.

But it was meant to be even harder. The only parking’s surrounding the ferry were 2 hour slots. This was no where near enough as simply a one-way ferry ride across the river to the Museum of Old and New art (MONA) was 25 minutes.

The only 3 hour parking we found, required coins.

No credit card. JUST coins. At $3.50 an hour, did they expect me to be carrying around bags of gold on my hip? Seriously did these people just carry around bags of coins?

???

After I let out some steam bitching and moaning (or should I say, MONA-ing) about the lack of credit card facilities available on parking meters, I got some helpful info from a MONA staff person who told me there were 8 and 10 hr parking slots available, but it was a good 10 minute walk from the ferry pick up point.

Fine. Fine fine fine.

We headed there, scrounged around for gold coins, and finally, FINALLY, found a park!

Baby girl had repeatedly denied food, I’d had to force a sandwich down her during a small lunch, and she was so, so tired.

It seemed like the idea of going to MONA, wasn’t meant to be.

But alas. We GOT THERE.

We boarded the ferry, talked with the staff, and while revelling in some gorgeous and breath-taking riverside views on the other side, also wandered around the dark corners and twists and turns of this most eclectic and thought-provoking museum, holding baby girl’s hand and carrying her (because it was a tad scary).

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A day that was so hard to come by, was a unique experience that we came to treasure. It wasn’t perfect by any means, but sometimes, you need to do the best with what you’ve got.

Baby girl crashed enormously once we were back at our place… and yet she still said through squinty and teary eyes as she lay on the couch watching her Tangled DVD…  “best boat ever.”

🙂

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#902 My heaven sent Angel

Today, while not feeling too happy, baby girl rested on the edge of the table, trying to get a peek at my face, downcast and heavy.

“Mama, what’s wrong?”

I sniffed. “Mama’s sad.”

“Why?”

I sighed. The sigh we adults make when we can’t explain. When it is too heavy for 4 year-old naïve and happy ears. When we want to explain, but can’t find the words.

“I’ll tell you about it one day. It’s ok honey.”

I continued my despondent stare, as she followed with “Ohhhhh.”

Then suddenly, she ran off.

She brought back her toy ukulele from her play area, stood right in front of me, and proceeded to play.

“Mama, me make you feel better.”

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Words can’t describe the rush of love, gratitude, passion and deep acknowledgment I felt when she said that and started playing her instrument. They were just strums on a toy, but it was the most sincere, heart-felt and beautiful music I have ever heard.

How could my heart not burst with joy? How could this loving action not override my sadness?

Then later, when I was on the couch still looking sullen, she went “I know I know!”

And she jumped in front of me, pulling funny faces at centimetre distance.

I couldn’t help it. I cracked up. My tears of sorrow turned into tears of laughter as she changed her faces to silly and crazy and funny again. I laughed again and again, marvelling at the beautiful and meaningful intention of baby girl to be so eager to see me smile again.

There are things I get down about. But today, being the recipient of my baby girl’s love and care, loyalty and devotion, well I felt so special. So important. I realised that although there are things getting to me, I was given an angel a long while ago, an angel to look after me and pick me up, make me smile and keep me going when times get tough…

And that angel is my beautiful baby girl. At only 4, she has more of a caring and sincere nature than many people my age. She is an extraordinary soul. And although there are things, like any human, that get me down…

I need not fear. I need not worry. I need not cry. Because my angel is there beside me, playing her ukulele and pulling funny faces ’til I get through… ♥♥♥♥

#898 Healing laughter

Last night when going to bed, I just wasn’t feeling myself. I was off. Down.

But then in amongst my internal searching for ways I could make myself feel better, I had a fabulous idea.

I could make myself laugh.

I held onto the thought, vowing I would put it into action the next day, and fell asleep on the hope of laughter.

This morning it happened. I was still feeling down and out, and this Winter weather has been seriously dragging me down with its severity and longevity.

I pressed the youtube button on the remote, and searched for a name that has brought me a lot of smiles lately – Sebastian Maniscalco

I’ve written about him before. I was first told about his popular “when you rang the doorbell 20 years ago vs today” skit ages ago by a friend, but I didn’t look it up then because, well I guess I wasn’t ready. Not in the way of not being ready for laughs, but just in the way of life preoccupying me and taking me away from doing things for myself…

like LAUGHING ’til I CRIED.

I brought up an 1 hour and 15 minute comedy routine of his that I’ve seen bits of, but that I’ve never watched in full.

Today, as baby girl was at kinder, and the winds raged outside, I watched it in full.

I smiled, I giggled, and I roared with laughter.

And though my melancholy remained in the background, I was uplifted by the fact that there is happiness out there, laughter to be had, and hope for good times is still around…

So get yourself comfy and watch the above routine, you won’t regret it 🙂

#897 This too shall pass

This Winter is dragging on. I thought a saw some relief days ago, but just as quickly it has vanished.

The days are long, dark, cold and windy. The heater is our only respite.

My child chooses to argue with me relentlessly, and I respond over-emotionally – I don’t know if it is the after-affects of the lunar eclipse that is wrecking havoc in our worlds, but times are trying.

I try to look up, but when I am reminded of repeated failure, I feel like that is ALL I know. How do you feel good when what you experience is anything but?

The slimmest of lights has me wondering. It has me with little Hopes.

My sister once owned a clock that read

“The best times and worst times have one thing in common… they never last forever.”

It’s one of those sayings that have left a forever imprint on me.

Because it’s a sentiment that lifts you up amidst times of hardship, reminding you that something good is around the corner… and it keeps you humble when you are as high as a kite, riding on the coat-tails of life and feeling the love and adoration of the world at your feet.

What goes down, must come up… and vice versa.

And just this afternoon, I noticed that it was lighter outside when baby girl finished with her usual Monday afternoon swimming lesson.

We leave at the same time each week, but today it was lighter.
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Well, maybe things are turning around the corner after all.

The darkness is leaving, and making room for the Light.

#861 Buy and purge day

It wasn’t the best start to the day.

We’ve all had those days. Those days where upon opening your eyes, it is immediately shit. You lift your head off the pillow with heaviness, dread weighing your feet down as you try to swing them over the sides of the bed. Eyes downcast in sorrow.

It doesn’t matter what the reasons are for these crap starts. I’ve had them. You’ve had them. We’ve ALL had them. And collectively, we could fill a book, or 2, or 20, with all the ways in which a day can start soooo wrong.

On the flipside, we could also create 600 books and more, on ways to turn it all around.

That’s what happened today. You see Hope, it’s a funny thing. It drives me crazy, because no matter what, there is always that little part of me, that is against all odds, HOPING. Hoping for the best. Hoping it all works out. Hoping that my luck will improve.

I rely on Hope heavily. And other times, like today, I HATE it. Sometimes I want to lose it. Sometimes I want to throw in the towel. Sometimes I want to curl up into a ball and shy away from the world.

But then, this freaking little annoying thing called ‘Hope,’ this tiniest of glimmers, pops its head up and asks “but, what if?”

It drives me MAD.

But it also saves me.

Step by step, I turned my day around. Isn’t that what we all do? We have no choice, and on we go…

STEP. STEP. STEP.

And then through the haze and confusion, two separate events helped me to move on.

BUY

Retail therapy. I mean, for such a heavy post, this really is a materialistic no-brainer. If you can, buy your way out of misery. I didn’t go mental or anything, though when I saw a nearby lady about to dig into a huge milkshake/ice cream/sundae, I had the insane urge to borrow my head into her gross and overwhelming dessert.

But I did buy some clothes, and since I’ve been wanting to get some new pieces for my Winter wardrobe, ticking this off the list on such a low day, started to really help.

PURGE

If by some chance you can’t buy your way out of unhappiness, there is one thing you can most definitely do that is FREE. And I think we are all screwed up and over-consumerised in our lives that we can ALL do this:

Get rid of STUFF.

After our shopping visit, I started to head at random, from room to room in our home, getting rid of stuff. There is a pile of ‘stuff’ we had in the corner of the top of our stairs, placed in such an odd spot because I think we thought putting that pile in the already crowded spare room of ‘stuff,’ would somehow overcrowd it.

(Huh. Get that logic. Put stuff in weird place near corner of stairs, but not in the room of actual ‘stuff.’ Anyway).

I worked at getting this pile out of there, using two categories.

Donate

Find a proper home (in the house).

I removed the entire pile, and honestly the donate to keep ratio was about 40/60. I was impressed.

I then moved to other areas of the house, with the added category of

Throw away

This was particularly handy when going through baby girl’s play area. I actually have a work in progress post about toys, the mental anguish parents go through, and how to tackle the problem of space and moving on from them. Watch my SmikG space. But I found it interesting that I didn’t tell baby girl what I was doing as I took various bits and pieces of hers to the bin, yet she somehow knew, because if she saw me pick something up that she liked, she called after me and made sure she retrieved it, yet for the other items, she didn’t say a word.

Interesting.

I did bits and bobs, even putting some things away in our new cupboard adjacent to the kitchen, and by the end of it all, boy did I feel rejuvenated.

Fresh. Lighter. Freer of junk, and freer of unhappiness.

I felt better.

BUY and PURGE. Take your pick, or do both, and get on with it…

STEP by STEP.

#842 Scones and Schnitzel

It’s kinda hard to look for gratitude and try to find small things that make you happy in amongst shitty days, even more so when those shitty days reveal even worser days for others.

How can one complain about smaller issues when they know of family or friends in ill-health or distress?

It actually reminds me of what I used to say after my father-in-law passed away. Here I was, a new Mum to a beautiful baby girl, yet still completely overwhelmed by my new parent role and the life that came with it; and then there was Hubbie, equally besotted by her, while simultaneously still in deep grief over his father’s passing. And sometimes, someone, somewhere, would tell me they were having a bad day.

They would quickly realise their words in my company, and apologise for complaining. They saw in me, in us, in our family, that there were far harder things to go through. To manage. To overcome.

But you know what I would say to them?

“Everyone has their own problems. You shouldn’t feel bad about yours, and feel guilty that they aren’t big enough to cry over. You are allowed to be upset, it’s your life, your problems.”

Sure, little problems in light of big problems become an awareness of the bigger picture, and that enlightenment is major in itself.

But we can’t all be in woe at the same time, can we? Then we wouldn’t have those others around us, less in woe, to pick us up from our sadness…

At this time of my life, I think I’m in a state of ‘less in woe.’

So I’m grateful.

But that isn’t what this gratitude post is about. That in itself is actually huge, more so because I know, and I have felt the comparison of being WHOLEHEARTEDLY in woe.

This is perhaps about the most trivial of things in light of today… baking.

For a week now I’ve been planning on making scones. They seem to make them for any given reason at baby girl’s kindergarten. Parents getting to know each other afternoon tea? SCONES. Mother’s Day? SCONES. Neighbourhood primary school visits? SCONES.

A possum jumps from the gum trees into the yard and shits all over the kids play equipment?

SCONES.

Ok so clearly I am bullshitting with you but you get my drift. I have not made scones in ages, well since we moved here really, and part of that has to do with

  1. kitchen reno, AND
  2. having half my kitchen stuff still in boxes upstairs because I’m waiting on one more damn cupboard (COME ON kitchen guys!) to get made.

I’ve forgotten half of what I do own in the way of bakeware and pans and the like, it’s been that long I’ve seen half of my things. But after repeated reminders by the kinder that both baby girl and I, really enjoy them, well I said to myself “I’ll damn well making them.”

You require next to nothing to make scones after all.

I really wanted to be grateful for them, really I did. And at the end, I was, for some brief moment at the end as I indulged in jam and cream upon pillows on doughy lightness that were apparently ‘café-style’…

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But the ‘before’ was hard, because baby girl was sick you see. I held her back from kinder, quite rich since THAT IS THE PLACE SHE CATCHES ALL HER WEEKLY COLDS FROM.

Not shitty much.

She was weak, tired, and developed a sudden ear ache during the day which had her retreating to the couch often to lie down. I had imagined us making these together with happiness… the most she did was brush the tops with milk.

And then the ‘after’… because as I was trying to enjoy my coffee/scone break, breathing slowly, ALONE, in peace, once baby girl had finished her babycino… I somehow spilt my coffee.

No, it gets worse. ON MY PHONE.

I swore better than a sailor out at sea. OH MY. Baby girl knows her Mum too well, and wasn’t afraid. In fact she came up to me and asked “Mama, you ok?”

Awww.

So instead of being grateful for my scones, the preparation time with baby girl which wasn’t special, and then the clean up which was devastating (I’d let dishes pile up half of the day), I instead became appreciative of something else.

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Hubbie cooked a killer chicken parmigiana tonight. He cooked it fresh, placed passata and ham and freshly grated cheese on top, grilled it in the oven, and it was THE BOMB.

The best part to him making it for us?

I didn’t have to clean it up.

(That wasn’t agreed to from his original contract, but from the day I’d had, there was no other choice).

Every time I complain about something going shitty, really I am grateful… because I do know better… I know better, that there is worse.

P.S My phone survived