This post come
The place I have been in is not a good one. My mood has been emulating a roller-coaster. I spent the last two nights camping at Shoreham and awoke this morning at 6.45am in order to get into work. Everything is hard. Small DB is a clingbot, and I probably told her too many times yesterday that I would have left for work when she woke up.
She was given ‘Peggy’, a book by Anna Walker, a year or so ago. It’s about a chicken that has an unexpected trip into the city. Since then we have always referred to my work as “going to Peggy” – and last night she woke up at least four times, crying “don’t go to Peggy” and “I want to come to Peggy with you”. I was feeling awful as I snuck out of the caravan at dawn
I stopped in Balnarring to coffee myself into existence and M texted me to say she was awake, happy and chatting So I ditched my plans to drive into work and am now on the train instead. WIth the car I could have left work late tonight and driven home if she was inconsolable, but I think it’ll be fine.
I drove myself and Small DB home from Shoreham yesterday morning, crying in the car. Distraught for everything and nothing. *eyeroll* I forgot that Small DB had not finished her breakfast – she then threw the world’s hugest tantrum, and when I remembered her lack of sustenance it took ages to make her toast in the stupid griller and as I waited, she screamed and screamed and emptied a sewing box all over the little bedroom. Eating improved us both. Small DB made us a salad for lunch, consisting of cucumber, tomato, capsicum, walnuts and ice-cubes, and things started to get better.
I tire of my own self. I am deluged by bills and expenses over the past six weeks. I am supposed to be appreciative of life, love and good health, but instead have yoyo mood. The camping thing was great for the Smalls and M, but me not so much. Too hot, too dusty and I was going to say that M and I are incompatible caravanners – but that’s not true. It is just that I am currently in a crazy state and am something of a hand-grenade. I have another health theory that says being coeliac does not tidily wrap up my problem.
If I was was a bit more my normal self I would have been able to kick back a bit more. I lay there last night wondering if I could paint the interior of the caravan in one day – it would mean unscrewing all the hinges off the cupboards, painting all the cupboard doors, all the surrounds and using a roller to do the ceiling/walls. If I unscrewed the hinges the night before, it might be doable. I think we painted the interior five years ago. The floor (originally done by M in the Bunning’s carpark on the way to Maldon Folk Festival in 2009) needs redoing as well. I have rethought my paint decisions from last time and want NO flat paint – all semi-gloss satin for WIPING DOWN. Has this sent you to sleep? It worked for me last night
[NOTE: This post has been brought to you by my own company, Self Indulgent Online Therapy Via Writing.]
Two weeks ago or so I was diagnosed with coeliac disease. Belatedly I realised that this is why I have struggled with low iron, osteopaenia and low Vitamin D and low zinc etc etc for so long! Hadn’t got around to posting it here because I was busy living through the various stages…
a) Hooray!! I don’t have some weird stomachy oesophageal cancer thing!
b) The cure is no gluten! Easy. Hooray!!
c) Erm…goodbye sourdough/beer/porridge/HP Sauce/Rye/Malt [sob]
d) Am not dying though, so… Hooray!
e) Cue: spasm. We make whole house a GF zone. Goodbye toaster*.
f) But WTF do we eat for breakfast?
g) More spasm. Join Coeliac Society. Never a better dollar spent. Am calmed.
h) Conflict as to whether it is OK to have GF children.
i) The above conflict is then complexified by the need to have Smalls tested for coeliac disease as they now have (or have always had, but I never knew) a 1/10 chance of having it too
j) Decide that having a GF house is a good option as we do eat healthily and the Smalls won’t expire from lack of Weet-Bix or wheat based pasta/bread…
However, we will try to give Small Z gluten every day until we have her tested. I honestly can’t see testing Small DB being a success, she would totally freak out if someone tried to extract her blood, so that will have to wait for a while.
I think that last time I posted about dietary stuff I had not yet had the formal diagnosis. I saw the gastroenterologist on Monday who agreed with my GP – coeliac. Is it possible to ever see a medical specialist and not be aware that you have about ten allotted minutes with them and then TIMES UP!? It makes me twitchy.
I had prepared my question, which was: “So, if the little villi in my small intestine are damaged – exactly HOW much are they damaged?”
“Ummmm,” he said. “Well there’s obviously damage, because that’s how we know you have it, but…”
“I’ll frame it a different way. How damaged are the villi out of ten?”
“About five out of ten.”
I wasn’t particularly horrified. It’s a reasonable midpoint. And I’d been reading data that stated people with zero symptoms could have severe damage, so I was OK with 50%. And as long as I do not ingest gluten – EVER – it should repair. It will be interesting to see what has happened over a 12-18 month timespan.
In the meantime, the Coeliac Society are just awesome. One of their volunteers spoke to me for a-g-e-s on the phone. She wasn’t diagnosed until she was 52! I found out lots of bits and pieces from her of which I’d been unaware. And she also recommended that the Smalls be tested. Sigh…
Ah well. Interesting times. Going to cafes feels slightly fraught – I didn’t know some soy milk has gluten – and that the chocolate they sprinkle on top of coffee often has it too! Meanwhile, M found me a new friend…beer from O’Brien. I thought I just didn’t like beer anymore as it has made me feel gross for about the last four years, but no! It was just the gluten! Who knew?!
*Toaster not actually in bin, but sleeping at my office because it will probably be put back into action to gluten-up Small Z
Time is getting away from me again – the end of February – a perfect time of year to lose one’s early January writing mojo. I have not been finding the time to do much of anything, making or writing. Small DB has not recovered from her week of fever – it really knocked her around. She revived to go to kindergarten twice, but has been dragged down by a horrible cough, a sniffle and very little stamina…
Cue regular scream-a-thons and almost incessant fighting between the Smalls. The older one is not 100% either. So we are not getting good sleeps, I’ve had a croaky voice and more 5.30am wake-ups. I”m pretty over it and I’ll be sleeping in the caravan tonight. Anything for a good chunk of rest.
I have not seen the inside of the pottery studio in two months, initially because the Nana was away, and then because of kindergarten. Admittedly there was one day when I could have gone, but the temptation just to get all the shopping done on my own and run errands unencumbered was too great.
I knew it would be like this, and brought a bag of clay home to do some hand building. Haven’t gone anywhere near it. Sigh… Let me get esoteric and blame it all on Mercury being in retrograde. Glerk…it’s almost over…
Hey – guess what!? My very talented cousin had a baby! She’s probably lucky to be living far away up in Brisbane or we would be begging to visit and smell his little newborn smell *swoon* Big congratulations and I am hanging out for the birth story
A very social weekend. I journeyed with the Smalls to Kinglake – a rather epic journey for us, taking almost two hours in the car. I am loath to use toll-roads but…(that ‘but’ was always going to be there) I remain so desperate to make the journey as painless as possible, that we went via Eastlink, and did it in about one hour and forty five minutes.
The Smalls were so desperate to catch up with their friends that they they were fine. (Small Z was always going to be fine, Small DB is the grenade – she didn’t go off.) It was C-O-L-D up there! So cold that we actually had a fire in the wood heater on Friday night, and I stayed up too late drinking wine and nattering…
I got lots of information about gluten-free life and was gifted some GF bread flour and an excellent GF cookbook. It was very soothing to be at someone’s house who I know is just All Over the whole gluten thing. I am still feeling self-conscious about asking whether things are gluten free – but there, everything already is!
We got in a visit to Polly’s school – new and fancy, having been rebuilt since the bush fires. There were chickens, a mini athletics track, great shade-covered play equipment…and a constant freezing wind that turned Small DB’s lips blue (she was being recalcitrant about wearing a coat).
On the way out of town we went (as we have before) to the park before saying farewell, and the Smalls got to watch a helicopter taking off.
We reached home after enduring half an hour of screaming before Small DB passed out. M then took both Smalls down to the Westernport Festival to show them the sights. That was the good bit. Then he wanted us to return to see the fireworks at 9pm. He made us leave at 8.30pm (it is a ten minute walk away) – so we were there at 8.45pm – waiting, waiting, waiting – tired Smalls, tired Smalls, tired Smalls – fireworks did not eventuate until 9.30pm. Small DB watched the first five minutes with abject disinterest and then started whining to go home… I won’t bore you further.
Sunday morning was surreal – we were all very tired and grumpy, but the weather was perfect – we went on a beautiful sailing trip to Sandy Point with our lovely friends and their boys – they brought the most a-m-a-z-i-n-g food (they don’t run the most awesome local cafe for nothing).
A really beautiful day, and great to spend it with our friends who we have hardly EVER hung out with outside their cafe. May there be many more
The moon is busting through the gap at the top of the curtains where the clothespeg is supposed to be. I have been dozing on and off since you woke up and wanted your top off.
“Too hot. My top is not comfy.”
“Sit up and I’ll take it off.”
The top is off, and mine is off too, and we settle back down. But it is obvious we are both in the state of semi-dozing – where it feels like no sleep at all. Almost an hour later your little voice comes calm and quiet out of the moonlit gloom.
“Mama, I can’t sleep.”
“Neither can I,” I whisper.
A year or so ago you would not have been able to explain yourself so well and I might have groaned with frustration at the intrusion, back when sleep was like gold dust. But now we share a cuddle in the dark.
“Maybe it’s because there’s too much moonlight coming through the curtains,” I say. “I’ll fix it.”
I teeter around on the bed, half nude, with the nightlight in one hand, trying not to step on the slumbering six-year-old. I peg the top of the curtains together. The room darkens.
“I’ll try one more time to go to sleep, but if that doesn’t work, we’ll just get up. Okay?” you say, like the most self possessed three-year-old in existence.
Your little arm reaches out to my shoulder, to my chest. Touches and eventually relaxes. Under the blanket I read my Kindle, half of me living in Donna Tartt’s shellshocked New York, half of me hearing the wind and the soft breathing of my present. A train whistles – it’s after 5am.
I lie and muse on coeliac disease, cancer, homeschooling, how long it took Donna Tartt to write ‘The Goldfinch” and remember reading somewhere it took her ten years. I wish for a cup of tea and wonder, yet again, whether it would be better to extract myself from the bed by wriggling down and out the end, or…
As always happens, one of you stirs and I take that as my cue to sit up and ease out from between the both of you, collecting Kindle, blanket and slippers on my way to the kettle. It is 5.30am.
Early wakening is something you read in psychiatric reports – a symptom of depression. I am not depressed. My brain is fizzing. My body is inactive. I pledge to myself that I will go to the beach and WALK ALONG IT. Although, as the next four days are awash with committments, I’m not sure when that will happen.
I turn off the gas before the kettle hoots. The wind shushes through the trees and what sounds like a gang of tiny birds whistle through the dark mixing amongst a sprinkle of wind chimes. The day is about to begin.
– Goldfinch picture from Etsy
Small DB woke up with a buzz of excitement and a smile that did not stop. She missed her first day at kindergarten last week, but I never told her, so today was her ‘first day’. She was a different kid – ate her breakfast, willingly got dressed into something that was not a flowery dress and was standing ready by the gate with her backpack on while everyone else (me) was still getting ready.
I belatedly realised that this was one of the first thing she has ever down ON HER OWN!. It was her own gig, and she wanted to jump in with both feet. She was ready in more ways than one. While she was waiting she renamed the family for the day (she’s kind of quirky like that). I became ‘SilkPot’, Small Z was ‘Mizzarky’, she named herself ‘Spotplant’, and M became (kind of hysterically) ‘Tomato’.
Yes – it’s actually a photo with me in it! (Thank you, M!) Small Z and I walked her down to the kindergarten, took her inside, hung out with her for about ten minutes. Her best little three-year-old friend arrived. She seemed happy for us to leave her there. So we did. There was no heartache involved. She was confident, but a little bit shy.
Small Z and I headed off to the library and The Local cafe for a little bit of much needed one-one-one time.
The kindergarten session was only two hours long and we were almost late back to pick up Small DB – we ran all the way! She was very happy to see us! We were told about singing ‘Dingly Dangly Scarecrow with a Flippy Floppy Hat’, story time, her snack, going to the toilet on her own… She was so pleased with herself.
It is, of course, hard not to make comparisons with what the experience was like with Small Z – they are both so different (such a stupid but unavoidable statement of the bleeding obvious). But reading back on what Small Z’s experience was like (thank-you, Interweb) – they are not dissimilar! One of my fervent hopes was to not have children that were shackled by their shyness, like I was, and I think we’re doing OK in that regard.
Hooray for Small DB! You’re all kinds of a-w-e-s-o-m-e!!
I have been unable to leave the house with Small DB for days. Sick for an entire week. The day they have to be looked after by M – she’s finally back on track. HOW IS THAT FAIR? Since I fixed his phone, he can send me photos, and this is what I saw…
That the child who stayed nude and housebound yesterday, impervious to my begging, got herself dressed this morning, made herself a snack and even BRUSHED HER HAIR (hello Anne Marie). And look! She’s wearing the trousers I made her – they appear to fit…
Small Z had decided it was Z-Mow’s birthday. Who is Z-Mow? Do you remember when he was freshly made?
And of course there was a cake and a candle for Z-Mow at the Local cafe…
Then M sent me this photo…Small DB napping…the little slender sapling that she is. She has lost some weight this week…
They finished off the day by a trip to the beach after dinner.
[...all photoes by M - thanks for giving them an awesome day!]
In our house, money is always a juggle. In comparison to many people we know, we don’t have a lot. This obviously has its down sides. But a big positive is this: I have had a week of hell with Small DB being ill. And a day of hell yesterday. Both Smalls need some one-on-one time; and I feel like I need to focus on Small DB (I’m getting to the big positive…here it comes…)
And this can all happen. In the interest of family sanity, M is recalled from boat duty and sent to the weekly WildThings adventure with Small Z. I am home with the other one – who awoke with a freshly made tantrum, but is responding to a quiet house, a bowl of blueberries and ‘Dinosaur Train’ watched in a patch of sunshine. And this is good.