Wednesday, March 09, 2016

quick post to mark the fact that tomorrow I go into hospital and on Friday I am getting the massive TRAM flap surgery. 6 hours under, 6 days in hospital and 6 week recovery (plus a bit longer probably). plus a further operating in 6 months to make a nipple and tidy things up.

am I happy about it? no.

but it's what I've decided to do.

scared, annoyed that my summer is being cut short, sad about the new scar it'll leave on my stomach. horrified at the cost. worried about leaving A and R to their dad's mercy for a week and how much R might miss me.

and maybe a tiny bit looking forward to never wearing this prosthesis again, never being anxious about people seeing down my top. hoping it will make me feel somewhat normal.

it'd bloody better. it's going to huuuurt.

Friday, February 12, 2016

logged in to do some admin so I may as well post. nearly two and a half. in a new childcare centre (the one his brother went to) and doing well.

independent. bossy. curious. loves a tickle but not really a hug. experimental. likes to take giant knives out of the kitchen drawer and run around with them (it was just once!)

we've sent off the forms to 'dispose' of the one emby that's left. I turn 50 in May.

in four weeks I'm going in for the truly horrid, painful reconstructive surgery that takes fat and skin off my stomach and tries to make it look like a boob. many misgivings but taking a punt that the result will be worthwhile. rather sick of this silicon thing and worrying about whether people can see down my top. just want to feel halfway normal.

planning a lot of tv and movies and maybe some books. will not be able to ride or swim for six weeks. really not looking forward to it, or the bit where I rely on husband to take care of things, and me. my expectations are high and his efforts don't meet them and it gets ugly.

and so on...

Thursday, November 13, 2014


sometimes I feel like I'm not his real mother; a hangover from the IVF and egg donation I suppose. and he can be grumpy and demanding, and I'm aware I don't feel that same level of bonding as I did with my first child.

But if I'm not his real mother, why did I feel ill and weak at the knees as I left him at a perfectly fine, brand-new childcare centre today, with food in front of him and a carer on duty, after spending an hour each of the previous two days there in order to make sure he was familiar with the place? Why did I feel shaky, like I'd been punched.

It wasn't like leaving him at home with a sitter, or with his grandparents. It's commercial childcare and to be honest I'm not yet 100% convinced it's a happy place, brand new and shiny though it is. too many babies crying.

Last time I started care, it was to save my life. A had to go *somewhere* while I did chemo. I guess this time it's to save my soul, as I know I need time to work, and time free of the demands of responding to a small child. time to move at my own pace. but it doesn't feel like it's saving me right now.

and I worry for him. he's not always a happy, friendly kid. how will they treat him? how will the world?

sometimes I don't like him much myself. but I love him and I want to protect him.

as they say: it's complicated.

(and there's a certain irony in the fact that this morning I let him sleep because I knew he was going to care, and that's when I worked: and now with 20 minutes before I have to leave home, I'm writing this, not working).

Thursday, November 06, 2014

walking now.

well, not now. now he's asleep on my bed with a temperature. has been hot and snotty for 24 hours. occasionally sooks and looks around and accepts a drink, then goes back to sleep.

and I shouldn't be frittering away time on the net. should be working. have accepted a revision of a book I once did. but today I just don't feel like it, however limited time is.

still wistful for the way things used to be. all that time. all those choices. all that sleep.

Friday, October 24, 2014


me: "Rufus, what noise does a doggy make?"
him (softly) "awuf".

he also decided to walk on 20/10....had been doing a few steps but this was the full dozen or more. now he walks, drops and crawls, but more and more walks, holding things in his hand or mouth.

first trip to the pool yesterday. the full excitement when he saw the water. and once he was in, he sat and splashed his hands in it like crazy.

Tuesday, September 02, 2014

this is the one-year-birthday post.

it's quick because R is asleep and I have things to do. too many things really and I won't know where to start.

he is a beautiful, smart baby. he cries too much. he is still waking me at night which I am increasingly having trouble coping with. he loves me and wants me to pick him up all the time.

I know I'm: exhausted. depressed. having trouble coping. I don't want this to turn into a post about my husband, but I'm pretty much giving up on him ever showing real empathy or treating my need for help as anything other than a personal affront. I'm just hanging in there as I don't think leaving him will actually make my life any better. it's sad but there you have it.

I'm trying to get the house organised. supposedly for R's party but at some level I need to clear the decks. I need to feel that at some point I am going to be able to get on with things without clutter and crap everywhere; even that if I choose to leave, I will be able to move out swiftly and cleanly.

I am sad that all the things I am doing, which I'd looked forward to so much: baby music, brunch in a cafe, walking him through the park; are tainted by this depression, exhaustion and my grief at the destruction of the freedom and work I had achieved prior to his birth.

the baby's birthday is a big deal. but it's a different kind of milestone for me.

going to get offline and write some to-do lists. it seems to help.

Friday, May 16, 2014


been reading posts from 10 years ago to see how we sorted A's sleep.

strikes me I was very different then; less demanding, more focussed on the baby and more willing to put up with damage to myself.

is the difference age, or the experience of cancer - the way it knocked me sideways and I realised I hadn't taken care of myself?

reading that stuff didn't help relationship with DH. he'll never get what happened and I guess I'll never really forgive him.

R's sleep is not good - waking 3-4 times a night - and we are going to have to just stop feeding him in the night. problem is that means days or weeks of night screaming and I'm not sure I'm up to that. is it better to continue being mostly wrecked or to risk being totally so?

he's trying to crawl. cutting top teeth. whingeing a bit more than I like. loving swings and outdoors and (mostly) eating. adores baths and screams when taken out.

talking to a friend on the phone just now I said I thought the thing was, 10 years ago I was just "on leave". now I'm a writer and can never really be "on leave". really feeling all the things I'm not doing; that whenever there is a moment I should be writing, not resting or doing housework...

have definitely been depressed, apart from the exhaustion. small things like swims and bike rides, which I didn't get in HK, are helping a bit.

probably Sunday night we'll stop feeding him every time he wakes - just wake him at 11 or so for a rollover. so hope it just works. it's hard to believe it might.

can't write long, have my donor and her two boisterous kids due. have to leave my computer and go prepare scones....

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