Monthly Archives: June 2012

Phlegm, failures and tummy troubles.

Welcome to our humble home.  Leave your health at the door and be prepared to be surrounded by coughing, sneezing and the soothing sound of gurgling phlegm.

The main reason I haven’t blogged for a few days is that I am battling the mother of all coughs. And when I’m not coughing, my chest is rattling with phlegm and I’m struggling to keep my eyes open at the end of the day. Oh, and I’ve got my period too. Can life get any better?  Yes.

Reading back on what I’ve just written, I’ve realised I’ve already mentioned phlegm twice. So can you tell that we’re all sick and phlegmy??

Work is so busy at the moment and one of the reasons I got myself this sick and run down is because I was trying to deny I was getting sick because I couldn’t take break from work.  And I can’t even look after my own sick kids because of my workload.  I feel like such a failure.

Both kids were home sick today and my husband had to stay at home to look after them.  Tomorrow he has to work and so do I – and it kills me because I know the kids would both benefit from another day home.  But what can we do? I have three things due this week and no-one else can do them.  And if I fail, then it will only make me look as though I can’t manage my time.

So I either fail as a Mum or fail as an employee.

I’ve definitely failed as a wife.  It’s been weeks since I’ve given my husband a good cuddle. It’s very hard to feel sexy when you cough all night and then have to knock yourself out with cough mixture full of codeine.

Oh, and I think I failed as a school mum tonight!

All day my tummy had been bloated from something I’d eaten. Then I had a work event and was struggling with a sore tummy while trying to be super sociable between dashing off to the toilet.  Thank you IBS!

Straight after the event, I went to my daughter’s parent/teacher interview.  Half way through it I felt my stomach start to clench and I suddenly thought “Oh no. I need to go to the toilet and I can’t concentrate on what the teacher is saying!”

I tried to focus and ignore the painful cramping, but I just couldn’t.  So I had to interrupt her and say I had to go to the toilet!!  We had pretty much finished and so she tried to wrap it up by asking if I had any concerns or questions and of course I said no. Luckily my little girl is doing beautifully at school, but I was so embarrassed. Imagine knowing you were cutting short chatting to your child’s teacher because you had to run off to the toilet!

Should I put a little note in my daughter’s school bag and apologise?

Bloody IBS – you shit me! Literally.  Ha Ha Ha.

 

 

 

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Self sabotage

Oooh, my tummy hurts!  Was it the three sausages with barbecue sauce I ate for dinner?  Or was it the rice snacks I wolfed down that contain non-FODMAPS friendly onion and garlic powder.

Oh, I know! It may have been the teeny slice of lemon tart I had for dessert.

Oh no, hang on! It may have been the packet of chicken chips I had at work.

Yes, it’s been a bad day.  Crazy considering yesterday’s blog was all about how I don’t want to let myself go.  Hopeless.

Do I get any sympathy if I tell you that I am battling a chest cold with a chronic cough? I couldn’t perform my wifely duties last night because I was hacking away – coughing, that is. I overdosed on Rikodeine – THE world’s best cough medicine  – that knocks me out, but makes me groggy in the morning.

So I woke up this morning tired, with a groggy head and feeling like a frump.  But the good news is that the massive pimple on my chin has started to go away. There’s always a silver lining, eh?

I had the evening to myself tonight which explains the bingeing. For some strange reason, when I know I have the house to myself I get this strong urge to eat, eat, eat. Like it’s my own dirty little secret.  And yes, there have been times when I’ve hidden chocolate wrappers in the bin by wrapping them up in tissues.

My hubby has started a 9 week photography course in the city, so I have the kids to myself every Monday from 5.30pm.  And it’s now 10pm. And how did this little black duck spend her time? She ate bad food which gave her sharp tummy pains and the runs.  Sorry to be so graphic, folks!

But to balance out all that self sabotage, I was kind to myself and watched Episodes 7 & 8 of Season 5 of Mad Men. Don Draper. Sigh.

So in the words of my favourite heroine Scarlett O’Hara – tomorrow is another day! I now have a FODMAPS cookbook, so there are no excuses. Actually, that’s not true.  I’ll find an excuse and I’ll probably just cut and paste this blog again in a few days time! Or I’ll just try harder tomorrow.

Stay tuned!

Thank you to my two followers

I just wanted to take a little bit of time to say thank you to my two wonderful followers!  You’ve come in quite early in my blogging world and I hope we can grow together.

I’ve been spending a bit of time reading some amazing blogs and am following a few myself – including my followers (I’m nothing if not loyal)!  Gawd, there are some great blogs out there and I can only hope to slightly emulate some of that terrific work.

But please, all of you who have passed through and had a quick read, and especially those of you who have made the effort to “like” one of my blogs, let me know how I am going!

I want to hear how I can improve, or if something I’ve written has made you smile or nod your head in agreement (or made you punch your fist in the air and go yeah!!).

Think of me as a sponge.  I want to learn from the masters!

 

Giving up too early

Something major hit me last night as I was staring at my reflection in the mirror.  I was looking pale, puffy, couldn’t take my eyes off the major volcanic pimple on my chin and my hair was a crazy birds nest.

I’ve given up on myself!

I’ve gone weeks hating my hair while I’ve been trying to grow it out and not cared how horrible it was looking.  I haven’t taken much care with my appearance – watch out for those spiky hairy legs! My face has decided to revert back to my teenage years and erupted in red pimples around my chin.  I may as well wear a sign that says “I’m getting my period soon – step back!”

And I’ve just sighed and thought “Oh well, who really cares?”

Isn’t 40 meant to be a time when a woman reaches her sexual peak? I’ve got to pull my socks up and get my groove on!

Righto, tonight I am going to shave my legs and have sex with my husband!

I’m going to give up on the ridiculous notion that having long hair again will make me more attractive, and get it cut short again (which my husband has been waiting me to do for ages).

And I will use that super expensive mask that the beautician recommended would help with my skin “issues”. Imagine how depressing it was to hear a pre-pubescent, stunning beauty technician who obviously has never had a pimple in her life, tell me that my skin discolouration and ‘ruddiness’ is due to ageing!  Feck off!

I also had big plans to look faaabulous for my 40th in January.  And I was doing so well until a few months ago when I stopped going to Weight Watchers because I was paying $18 a week to step on some scales!

Even though I had planned to keep going on my own, all the motivation went out the window and the weight has crept back on – not too much, thankfully. But I have lost my exercise mojo big time.

Boo hoo to me!

Someone pass me some dairy free, wheat free, flavour free chocolate – quick smart!

 

 

 

 

 

 

All boxes ticked

The end of another busy day.  And I love my couch!  The only trouble is, once I sit down, it’s very hard to get back up again.

And I’ll need to get up soon so I can take my daughter’s school uniform out of the washing machine so it can be relatively dry for tomorrow – or else she’ll have nothing to wear.  Oh and I have to make her lunch too. Time check: 9.24pm.  The night is just beginning.  Woo hoo.

I can confidently say I have ticked all the boxes today (not necessarily all good ones):

GOOD MUM

My kids woke me up at just after 6am and came into my bed.  I gave my little boy a huge cuddle and had a chat to my little girl.

GOOD EXERCISER

At 6.45am, I made the kids their breakfasts then did my Michelle Bridges circuit DVD. Had to pause it a few times when the kids would yell out for more cereal or to show me a picture they’d drawn.

GOOD MUM (again) & SEMI GOOD WIFE

Got the kids dressed and ready for school and day care.  Packed lunches, checked that my daughter had her ‘show and tell’ items and sports uniform.

I think I even managed to say a few words to my husband in the morning rush! But he didn’t really get much more out of me.

GOOD EMPLOYEE

Churned through my work today because unlike most of my colleagues, I cannot work back late because I have to pick up my little boy from day care!

BAD DIETER

Ate some liquorice bullets, a choc chip cookie (not in my FODMAPS diet) and a small bar of Cadbury’s chocolate.

GOOD MUM (again)

Smothered my kids in hugs and kisses when I got home and listened to their stories about their day.

Then I cooked two meals for dinner – didn’t even change out of my work clothes – one for the kids and one for me and my husband.

BAD MUM

I never planned to make two meals, but as I started to cook the first meal,  I realised my kids were not going to wear it, so why bother going through the turmoil of tears, etc? So the second meal for them was chicken nuggets and veggies (got to get veggies in there somewhere!).

GOOD MUM (again)

Dished out the kids’ dinner, while still cooking the second one.  Then when the second one was in the oven, I played Connect Four with my kids and husband.

Got the kids into their PJs, read three books (!) and once again smothered them in kisses and cuddles and put them to bed.

GOOD WIFE-ish (again)

Actually sat down with my husband at the dinner table and ate dinner – and had a conversation!  Lawdy!

GOOD FRIEND

Checked in with a few friends on Facebook and sent off comments.

BAD WIFE

Have since been sitting on the couch, working on my laptop, watching ‘Offspring’ and ignoring hubby!  Not meaning to of course, but I am spent!

The end!

How does she do it?

If I had a dollar every time someone asked me “How do you do it?” after I tell them I am a full time working Mum, I’d be able to be a stay-at-home Mum!

And why don’t people ask ‘How do you BOTH do it?”

You see, people always seem to look at the working Mum and ask her how she does it; as though the husband does nothing at all. Do people assume he does nothing?

Are we still stuck in the 1950s stereotype that childrearing is all up to the Mum? It’s strange to me that people are so impressed and surprised when I tell them how much my husband does. To me, marriage is a partnership.  Simple.

The only way it works for me is because I have an amazingly supportive husband who mucks in and helps out.  If he gets home early, he picks up the kids and starts dinner. If I have to go to a work event, he supports me.

So this is how I do it (hubby does pretty much the same):

  • I get used to pushing through a haze of tiredness
  • I drink lots of coffee
  • I push myself to do something for myself – exercise or a long shower
  • I do housework at 10pm
  • I outsource and buy online as much as I can (including birthday cakes and cleaners)
  • I don’t waste time at work, so I can leave on time
  • I rush around like a mad woman in the mornings
  • I can put a full face of make up on in 5 minutes (hubby doesn’t do this.  Hee Hee).
  • I have an amazing husband and supportive family
  • I cook on Sunday afternoons and freeze meals to attempt to make weekday dinners easier
  • I have every now and then given my kids Weet Bix for dinner!

I work full time for financial necessity, but even if I didn’t have to, I would still work part time. I think I would go insane if I was home full time. Does that mean I don’t love my kids enough?  Hell no! I love them so much, my heart almost pops.

And I always assumed I would be a full time working Mum because my Mum always worked.  I can’t remember her being around much when I was little, but she has told me that she actually worked part time when I was little.  But I don’t remember.  Isn’t that funny?  Here we are tying ourselves in knots, worrying that we’re not there enough for our kids if we choose to work; and they probably won’t even remember whether we were around or not!

I think my kids have really benefitted from being in childcare. They are social and happy to make new friends.  They don’t freak out if they spend the night away from home at someone else’s house and have learned good routines.

My six-year-old was so ready to start school this year because she had already been taught to look after herself and her bag at childcare, and to get her lunchbox and understand there are rules and schedules.

Even though they thrived at daycare, I still had many mornings of crying in the car in the carpark after dropping them when they have cried for me to stay home with them.  Having to turn your back on your small child who is crying and screaming for you to stay is the absolute worst part of being a working Mum.  And I know they quickly got over it once they got distracted by toys or other friends.  But hell, it tears you apart.

I went through it again when my little girl started school and we put her in to before school care so I could continue to start work at 8.30am. She didn’t know anyone at all and she looked so tiny in her school uniform – my sweet little Preppy.

For about a week I would sit in the car and cry after saying goodbye to her. And then I told my boss that I needed to start later so I could walk her in to her classroom at 8.45am.  I didn’t ask, I just said that it was what I was doing.  So now I work back a bit later and sometimes miss lunch, but I get to hold her hand while she skips in to class.

I asked my little girl once what she thinks Mummies do.

And she said, “work and eat”.

‘Nuff said!

Shredded nerves

Oh my god, what a night! The minute my hubby picked me up from work with the kids in the car, it was ON.  Apparently they had been great all day and had just decided to be grizzly and whingey (is that even a word?) just for my benefit.

My little boy kept playing with the electric windows in our car – up, down, up, down.  My hubby almost had an accident trying to find the window lock button while driving in heavy traffic. So I asked him to pull over and then I told my little boy if he didn’t stop, he’d get a smack.  He didn’t stop so I smacked him on the hand.

I always try my best not to smack the kids and when I do smack too hard, I absolutely hate myself.

I know there is that debate that smacking should be banned, but how could you possibly police that?

I haven’t heard anyone talk about degrees of smacking. Sometimes I believe you will need to smack ONCE and that’s enough.  If you are like me, you hate that you’ve done it, and that is that. But is it fair to lump parents like me who smack rarely (and always as the last straw) with parents who smack often – and more than once- and don’t even bat an eyelid?

When we got home and had dinner, the kids were niggling at each other and I threatened that if they continued, they would be eating their dinner in their rooms.  So of course they continued.  And then I set up their tables in their rooms.  My six-year-old lost the plot and started crying and yelling, while my four-year-old meekly sat down and actually thanked me for letting him eat in his room!

From then on, my daughter screamed and cried most of the night.  She just couldn’t stop. It broke my heart, but it was also so hard to take – esp. after a long day at work.  I’m tired.  I’m exhausted.  I have almost no reserves left and then I have to face this!

So what were my tactics? Well, I tried to keep my voice low and to keep her calm.  I would walk away when she started yelling and come back when she stopped. But she really did just have to wind herself down, the poor poppet.

We read about four books, had a few cuddles and then just when things were calming down I asked her to take off her nightie because she had spilled lots of her dinner on it – and it all started again! And that’s when the nerves started to shred and I could feel them twanging like a guitar!

The only thing that keeps me sane during those moments is that for some reason, when one kid is losing the plot, the other seems to be an angel.

So I walked away from my girl to put my little boy to bed. Lots of cuddles and kisses for Mummy from him.  When he threw his chubby little arms around my neck for a hug, it was like someone had put soothing balm on my poor nerves and I was ready to face the battle again (which had been standing outside the bedroom door, crying and yelling out for Mummy, by the way).

Hurricane 6-year-old eventually wound down after lots of tummy rubs and soothing words.  Poor chicken. She is going to be exhausted for school tomorrow. And poor me! Hee Hee.