Wednesday, December 31, 2008
Monday, December 29, 2008
But every once in a while, maybe once or twice a year, I get all broody. It's typical for this to happen over the Christmas holidays, when families with young children all seem so magically happy. I spend time with my grandparents, and see what joy their children and grand-children bring to their lives. I worry about being old and alone, with no one to look after me.
For the past week, I went through this familiar emotional cycle. I don't like to talk about it, because the answer most people will give me is "No problem! There's still time! Hurry up and have a baby!" That's not what I need to hear. I KNOW in my gut that having a child would not be a good idea for Ken and I. It's just not an easy decision to live with all the time. Just like having kids isn't always easy, but that doesn't mean you give them up for adoption because you've had a bad week.
Ken and I are like two playing cards, leaning up against each other to form a somewhat stable triangle. Neither one of us is consistently "the strong one". We take turns supporting each other through life's trials. We both came from childhoods that were difficult, and we're both sensitive, some would say oversensitive, emotionally, psychically, and physically. Just getting through life as it is now often overtaxes our resources. We can comfortably look after ourselves and each other, but start adding demands on top of that and the effort can only be maintained for a few weeks or months before either of us might start to crumble. I speak from experience.
If I try to willpower my way through more than I can handle, my body starts to seriously malfunction. I have a knack for somatizing my feelings.
I have a history of depressive phases, which can be triggered by too much stress and insufficient sleep. I think I'd be the perfect candidate for a truly horrifying post-partum depression.
In a perfect world, if I could trust myself to be as resilient and adaptable as I would like to be in theory, I would love to experience motherhood. Some people have told me that I should take the plunge, because I'll be surprised at what I can accomplish, when I have to. In my life it's most often worked the other way. I've optimistically made grand plans, assuming that because I'm committed to my goals I will be able to tolerate any hardship to achieve them. I truly believed that if my mind could conceive it and my heart could believe it, I could achieve it. I overestimated myself time after time. Experience proves that the best of intentions, positive thinking, and all my willpower (and trust me, I'm stubborn!) can't overcome my limitations.
Therefore, once again I must confirm to myself the wisdom of not becoming a parent. I'd rather keep the hard-won stability and happiness that I've finally achieved, than risk it all for a high-stakes gamble. In the meantime I'll keep volunteering at Babyland, and satisfy some of my maternal instincts that way. I promise not to steal any of the babies.
Saturday, December 27, 2008
Wednesday, December 24, 2008
Monday, December 22, 2008
San has been ever so kind, and honoured me with a very flattering award:
To quote San's blog, The PREMIO DARDOS award is "given for recognition of cultural, ethical, literary, and personal values transmitted in the form of creative and original writing." Wow. That's one classy recommendation! I feel truly humble.
Of course an honour like this must be passed on. After deep and searching thought, I have chosen the following honourees:
1) Ron at Warped Mind of Ron, because he writes in so many styles: poetry, fiction, and memoir. How much more literary can you get?
2) Whatigosofar because he's definitely transmitting his personal values through original writing. No punches pulled on this blog.
3) Nilsa at Somi is never afraid to speak her mind. She does so charmingly and gracefully.
4) Keera at A Roll in the Universe posts snapshots, both literal and literary, of life in Norway.
5) Dianne at Forks Off the Moment is deserving in every way, especially with regard to ethical values.
Congratulations to all y'all! ;-)
Good News #2!
Slowly but surely, I have recuperated from my spell of ill health. The aches and pains are gone, as is the shortness of breath. My hands no longer require five minutes of warm-up exercises before they can be used in the morning. I'm not breaking out in hives either. I'm still more tired than usual, but other than that, I'm back to my normal self again.
Of course the blood tests didn't show any significant results. I guess it was just my body's wild and crazy way of responding to stress. This whole past year has been pretty challenging, what with my mom and step-dad's divorce and me being caught in the middle. I don't think it's any coincidence that my health crumbled shortly after my mom finally said that she was starting to feel alright again. I was running on empty, and when I learned that she didn't need me to be strong for her anymore, I just went down like a puppet with my strings cut. 10 months of accumulated tension was finally released.
I'll be taking it easy for a while longer. I can feel that I need a long rest. A few days off for the holidays couldn't have come at a better time!
Friday, December 19, 2008
How were you inspired to start blogging and how did you choose your blog name?
I've always loved to write. I wrote journals for many years, but eventually I got sick of being my own audience. With no one else to read what I wrote, I was prone to lots of complaining and being a Drama Queen. I was also not motivated enough to try to get any of my work published. When I learned about blogging I realized that it was the perfect solution: I can self-publish for free, get instant feedback, and participate in a community of other writers. How cool is that?
I can't remember how I chose my blog name. It was a passing whim that became permanent.
If you can only do one family tradition/decoration for the Holidays (Christmas or Hanukkah) what would it be?
I love decorating Christmas trees. I don't have one in my home this year, but next year I'll get on that.
What is your idea of a dream vacation?
My dream vacation would involve being instantly teleported to my destination, without any jet lag or lost baggage. I would like to go somewhere that's not too broiling hot, with tap-water I can drink without getting sick. I think being pampered half the time and touring beautiful, historic sites and natural landscapes the other half of the time would be a good balance. If anyone knows where I can get a package like this, please e-mail me.
If you saw a man that was obviously a criminal drop a big bundle of cash while running from other criminals and you picked it up, what would you do with it?
I wouldn't pick it up, because the other criminals would chase me down and beat me until I gave it to them.
Oh, you mean that the other criminals didn't see the bundle of cash drop? So it's just found money? I'd have to be a goody-two-shoes and either hand it in to the police or donate it to World Vision. I have a very sensitive conscience. I don't keep gifts like that for myself. I have to pass it along to someone who needs it more than me.
If you had a small thermonuclear device and it was counting down to zero (quickly) which wire would you cut the red one or the blue one and why?
RED! No, BLUE! No, BOTH! *snip* **KABOOM** Uh, sorry, I guess that was the wrong choice?
ummm.... #5 may be a little arbitrary if you want you can use this one instead
Does your family know about your blog and if so are they supportive of you talking to strange internet type people?
Some of my family (a minority) know about my blog, and read it regularly. That would be my sister, my biological father, and my step-mom (Hi Guys! I love you! :-). They are supportive of my writing, and let me know that they're missing it if I go through a phase of not writing much. This gives me the warm-n-fuzzies, and keeps me motivated to write even when I might otherwise get lazy.
The rest of my family hasn't been introduced to my blog, and for now I'll be keeping it that way.
Oh, and Ken reads my blog. He's very supportive. His only condition is that I'm never allowed to post a real picture of myself because he thinks I'm so gorgeous that weird cyber-strangers will stalk me. Then I'll unwittingly give away too many clues regarding my identity, and they'll show up one day and kidnap me. Or something.
Dear Ken, I love you! Thank you for believing that I am so irresistibly attractive that the mere sight of me might drive the men of the internet crazy with unwholesome desires. And thank you for referring to Milla Jovovich as "that girl who looks like you". You really know how to flatter a woman.
End of interview. That was fun! OK, who wants to be next? Here's now to participate:
According to the rules I must link back to the post I got this from.
1. Leave me a comment saying, “Interview me.” (And your e-mail address, please.)
2. I will respond by emailing you five questions. I get to pick the questions.
3. You will update your blog with the answers to the questions.
4. You will include this explanation and an offer to interview someone else in the same post.
5. When others comment asking to be interviewed, you will ask them five questions.
Tuesday, December 16, 2008
Last year there was much drunkery. Clerks gave their bosses lap dances. A "respected colleague" of mine stuck her tongue in Ken's ear. Bonuses were handed out at the party. One spoiled young lady decided she hadn't gotten a big enough bonus, threw a tantrum, and tore the cheque into little pieces. When she went to the management the following week, claiming she lost her cheque and could she please have a replacement? they told her she'd made her bed and she'd have to lie in it.
I did write a post about all of the above, but I can't find it. I did, however, find this one with the pictures of Scary Santas. The hobby shop that had these guys in the window has since disappeared (the owner retired), so those are truly historical pictures now!
This year, the Christmas party was like the last three Christmas parties, minus the shenanigans. The menu was exactly the same. (Potato and Leek soup; followed by fish fillets, salad, and rice; followed by steak, tater tots, and steamed veggies; followed by ice cream; pause for dancing; then at 11:00 pm they bring out giant platters of seafood - lobster, crabs, shrimp, mussels- nothing that wears a shell is spared. All the food is high quality and very yummy. I have no complaints about the predictable food. I like to know what I'm getting.)
The DJ's were the same and they started off the dancing with the same slightly irritating medley of 1950's rock'n'roll tunes (Rock Around the Clock; Tutti Frutti; etc.)
As usual there was one girl who's not used to drinking who ended up spending the entire night sitting on the floor in a bathroom stall, miserable, because she got just a little too adventurous with the liqueurs on top of a stomachful of fried cod.
Generally speaking, a good time was had by all. Drunkards make for good stories after the fact, but I didn't miss them.
Friday, December 12, 2008
They live on the west coast, in Nelson, B.C., so I don't get to see them much. I watch the kids grow up in a lengthy, stop-motion animation of infrequent visits. I knew they were due in town sometime around the holidays, but I wasn't expecting a call that day. It was the best surprise I've had in a long time.
We made plans to meet for dinner that same night. Ken and I drove up to Thornhill where they were staying with my girlfriend's in-laws. As we rounded the corner into the cul-de-sac, I had a flashback to 1989, when I had visited that house once before.
Of course, when we first arrived, my friend and her family had all my attention. Her boys, ages 6 and 3, are sprouting up, and her 10-week-old daughter is as sweet a baby as you'll ever meet. Celeste was awake when we got there, so I got the satisfaction of immediate smiles and snuggles. She's just a wee thing at a shade over 9 lbs, but she can already hold up her head just fine, thank you very much.
I even talked Ken into holding the baby for a few minutes - not his preference, but once she was on his lap, smiling gummily, he relaxed. I don't know what it is with men. Until the second they become fathers (and possibly after that, I don't know) they seem to have no inclination whatsoever towards holding babies. All the non-dads I know say "But I'm scared I'm gonna drop it!"
OK, first of all she/he is not an "it". And second of all, when was the last time you dropped anything? These fellows handle sharp knives and power tools with total confidence. How is holding a baby scarier than using a nail gun? I don't get it.
The boys stayed behind with their nana and gramps. The rest of us drove around the corner to Congee Queen restaurant. It's the kind of Chinese restaurant where you can order a whole roasted pig, with enough advance notice. (Large Pig $185, Medium Pig $ 135). There was so much cornstarch in the sauce that our shrimp dish looked like it was covered in a thick layer of clear-dry glue. However, it didn't taste like glue. We had a good feast.
Back at the in-laws' house, I had a chance to take a look around. It was EXACTLY the same as when I was there in 1989. In fact all the decor was pretty much the same as when the family moved in, in 1981. They actually have a parlor, otherwise known as "the room nobody is allowed to go into". The colour scheme is green and peach, with silver-foil-swirl wallpaper. And lots of silk flowers in peach and minty green - the kind with glitter on the petals.
In fact, there are silk flower arrangements everywhere in that house, as many as three in any given room. It's really quite something to see. It answers that burning question: who buys silk flowers anyway? Apparently my friends in-laws buy ALL of them.
I don't want to be mean. They were very gracious hosts. I just couldn't resist telling the story. I figure anything that makes my eyeballs bug out like that is worth sharing.