Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Christmas roundup

I know it's belated; but MERRY CHRISTMAS!! I hope you enjoyed time with your family, far too much food and lots and lots of paper rubbish. Ours didn't turn out half as bad as I thought it would (that bottle of Oyster Bay probably helped!!). It was quiet, reflective and, well, OK.

Santa came here for the kids; both got scooters and a few other bits and pieces. C also got a potato and a stick.

Let me explain.

In our house, if you're naughty, the birds (in which there are many around here) will tell Santa who, if he decides you've been naughty enough, will leave sticks and potatoes instead of presents. C was all 'oh sure he will; watch me get presents' - and to G that was a red flag to a bull. So, out came the sticks and potatoes.

He sucked it up which was good of him - 'Mum, that could've been a motorbike but I was naughty - maybe next year'. That's right sunshine.

Santa also came to hospital this year. I don't know where I'm up to with that saga, but he went into ICU, came out and then went back in again; so there was no hope of him coming home for Christmas. I was a little concerned Christmas Eve; he'd worked his guts out to get home for Christmas and it didn't happen and I was a touch concerned that he'd given up. But no, he was there for Santa in the hospital and, whilst there were a few tears, everyone bucked up and got on with it.

After that, the day was pretty much 'normal'. Lots of people went to see Dad, so he wasn't alone and we had the Christmas lunch thing. I had a sleep, then we went to G's brothers; where it was basically an orgy of $5 crap that the kids didn't need and a whole lot of nothing being done by the 2 wicked SIL.

G and the boys went to the farm Boxing day and I was all set for a quick hospital visit and then home to box up this house. Except, whilst I was in the hospital, we had a fire. I know; ridiculous huh?

Not much damage caused and we are all Ok, so that is the main thing. It's just a big pain in the arse really. But all the neighbours pitched in to put it out and get my dog (who wouldn't get out until Kirsten turned up and then jumped in her car refusing to get out until I came) which was all very nice. The boys next door even offered to rebuild it all for me; but I think G's brother J is going to fix it.

I'm back to work today which will be riveting.

Joanne will probably be paid for the forseeable future; mum needs her around, so that's what will happen. I have decided to just keep right out of it. If M asks, it's something he needs to take up with my parents.

I'm really ready for 2009 to be finished now. I am precariously ticking the days off; something is bound to happen between now and New Years, so I am being careful and watching what I do. Apart from Riley starting school; this year has been awful.

Roll on 2010.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

A little bit happened today....

I start off thinking 'oh I feel bad for writing this whingy whiney blog that has turned from something so nice into something so maudlin and lonng' - but then I think 'my blog, my rules'.

So, I'll apologise in advance. It's whingy. Again.

There is some good news today; we are now on a critical list for a transplant (which is not quite *super* urgent - I figure Saturday night he'd have been 'super' urgent given he was 4/5ths dead because that's the system!) and whilst he is still in ICU; they are starting all their testing for their profile for the transplant. He is now under the 'LTU' - Liver transplant unit and no longer fucking around with gastroenterologists who want to 'see if this works' or liver specialists who are completely fucking blase because they are sure he's drinking and we are just fuckwits who don't know any better...

They have told us 'early in the new year' which I, at first, thought to mean April/May (it is the public system after all); but when they started gung ho profiling - it might be earlier than that?

But I digress. He's in ICU more for the machines now than for him; the oxygen levels in the wards don't go as high as the ones in ICU; and the team want to have a bit of leway if something goes pear shaped quickly. So, he's in there on a lower setting; but because of the lack of stabilisation, he's still getting sedated (twighlight I think they called it? and no, not the vampire) just to keep him calm enough to stable him. Once they are confident about the stability and the lack of oxygen, they'll throw him back up to level 8.

I'm in a whole other place with this at the minute. I am not hoping; but I am not pessimistic either. I am not speculating in any way shape or form anymore - because the roller coaster is bad enough; let alone adding to it by 'maybe or might'. We just do not know if he'll A. make it TO transplant; B. whether he is a candidate for transplant (high BP,diabeties and the kidneys which could all be liver related, but is a question of chicken or egg) or C. Whether he even wants a transplant. He bounces between the two, depending on the day; but the psychiatrist saw him today and hopefully seeing him will at least set him right in his own mind.

I have no opinion one way or another. If he doesn't want the transplant; how could you blame him? He has had 3 'good' weeks this year - all spaced out in individual days and all 'good' enough to go to the supermarket. Awesome. I don't know that I would want to keep going either. And I am starting to be at the point where I don't need him as much as he needs this to stop IYKWIM. I am starting to feel cruel.

But, on the other hand, if he wants a transplant, then I'll be right there with him. Duh.

We got a massive book today with regards to 'transplant and you - what to expect' type stuff; they had about 4 pages of quotes from past patients/families. And it was ironic that today was the most alone I have felt for a long time; reading these quotes and reasonating with so many of them; made me feel A. less alone and B. Less freaky.

The beautiful beautiful Jayne lost her father today. I think of her often and wonder whether she feels similar; or whether it's just me that wishes sometimes that he'd just die and stop torturing himself this way. I'd love to sit down with her one day, when it's all done and dusted for both of us, sans kids, with lots to drink. One day.

Tomorrow my sister, mother and I have a counselling session of our own. I have no idea what to expect; but if it's anything like the first social worker, I'll just about punch her. After 6 attacks, we see her and she's 'oh here's a booklet'. Well we fucking HAVE that. 'oh well, you're managing beautifully' - as the crazy man looks for his dead father. But I have no expectations of tomorrow; it's such a long time away.

We started off weeks by weeks, then day by day; now we're morning by afternoon. Soon, I am starting to think, we'll be hour by hour.

Obviously he's not home for Christmas this year, which is killing him; but until he can be stable he cannot leave. And he's not out of ICU yet, so there is no hope they are going to let him out of ICU tomorrow and then home for a few hours. But, again, who knows.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Best laid plans go astray

We had such grand plans.

We had spent the morning at a birthday party and an afternoon at home, playing footy with the Christmas CD on, making ice cream cakes (and sundaes!!) and being a family. The kids were showered and in their PJ's, excited about Santa coming and all the fun the day would bring.

G had gotten Monopoly junior down; we were going to have home made pizza and a night of monopoly (although C was bound to get bored!). We all needed this reconnection and all were looking forward to it.

I had just put the kids pizzas in the oven when the phone rang.

'You better come and have a look'. He was fine yesterday! Very fat (lots of fluid, he was scheduled for a tap this week after seeing the liver unit), but sharper than he'd been for awhile. Surely he's not that crazy?

With a sigh, I put my oven mitt on the bench and told G. But I also told G that 'maybe we'll try and manage it at home. It's the Saturday night before Christmas; we're going to be in there for days'. Kissed the disappointed children (and husband) goodbye and thought I'd be back sooner rather than later.

I walk in and his eyes have rolled right back and he is drooling. Drooling!! My father is drooling!! He's talking to his dad again (who has been dead 12 years) and I had a passing hope that the bastard (my grandfather) would take him with him. As if.

We call the ambulance; a little more worried than normal, because it's been so quick. Off we go; mum riding in the ambulance and me following to meet them there. We get there and, of course, it's flat out.

Except this time we don't have to wait around. We are wheeled directly to a private ER room where he's hooked up to all sorts of machines. He's not responding to pain stimuli (or any other stimuli for that matter) and he's not concious.

They test, examine, test, examine and come in and tell us that he's suffering from enchelapathy again. Well DUH. But they don't quite know why it's happening so quickly this time. He's starting to struggle to breathe; they ventilate 'just to be safe'. They can't do a CT scan because he's too sick, so at this point they are assuming he's had a bleed to the brain. We are kicked out alot this time too; and very quickly it went from 'oh we're old hacks at this' to 'I think something is really wrong here'.

By 11.15, Alvin (the liver specialist who is someone we know, and initially we cannot believe our luck that he's the one on tonight) sits us down and explains that he has either one of two problems. A. the blood vessel to the liver has clotted (blocked) and we need to unblock it using warfrin (blood thinner). This is all completely reversible yada yada yada but that he thinks it's time to expidite the transplant profiling. They cannot stabilise him, so they are going to sedate him to A. assist with the stabilising and B. give his body some rest. Oh yeah, we think he needs a moment in ICU.

ICU? Fucking hell, what is going on here?

Alvin tells us to go home; they will not move him anywhere until he's been stabilised and that he will call if there is any change. The prognosis is promising, although, no committment is made to him pulling through.

I've called my sister in by this stage, and, as only she can, she falls apart. Dramatically as usual and she's wailing that he was talking to her yada yada yada. She is alarming Alvin, so we pick her up and walk down to the carpark. I am silent at this stage, wondering just what to make of it all.

It's now just past midnight and we're at mums just digesting what has just happened. Mum tells us all to go home and get some sleep, and I think this is all very practical. So, I get in the car and start home.

The darkness is comforting; I feel dark, so it's nice that the world agrees with me. I have no music on; just the humming of my brain is my company. I hear a noise and wonder what the hell is that? Turns out it's me. This gutteral wail is coming from my mouth, but I can't seem to stop it. It hurts to breathe, and it hurts to stop it.

I text my friend; there is no way I can go home to a house full of sleeping family. I turn up at her house and literally collapse. Her and her beautiful husband carry me inside, and just cuddle me until I can control this...noise. We talk for hours.

6.30am we are back at the hospital, but up to a whole new floor. The ICU unit is locked, with a speaker and a large waiting area. We are too early; wait 20 minutes please as Alvin has just come. So, as per hospital protocol; we wait.

Finally we are allowed in to see him. It is a mess; machines everywhere, 18 tubes coming out of his mouth and he looks peaceful. I tell Dad that he better not be staying on our account and that I promise to look after everyone. I then start to lose control of the gasping and have to leave.

Alvin comes out after awhile and sits us all down. This time, it's renal failure. Decent possibility of reversal, and some good drugs availiable, but they need to stabilise him before they will try them. They will divert blood from other organs to give the kidneys a foot in the backside. They won't wake him until tomorrow afternoon and re-evaluate; but at this point, he is soooo not coming home for Christmas. He'll be lucky to be out of ICU by then.

Relief. We won't be in emergency at least for Christmas.

We thank Alvin and go home. I've turned on auto pilot and get home to an empty house. I busy myself, doing stuff that I know I needed to do; but not thinking one iota.

Eventually the mask cracks and I am gasping again and my chest hurts. I go to bed, where I cry like I have never cried before and drift off to sleep, with my fingers crossed that he'll die in his sleep and this cruel disease will leave him alone forever.

Monday, December 14, 2009

It's beginning to look alot like Christmas!

It finally feels like Christmas is upon us. Decorations are out, cards have been sent and presents have all been bought and wrapped. I'm happy we made it here; and not only did we make it here, Dad is good.

I know that it's day by day, and that he's still a pretty sick man; but for the moment; he's well. Which is an awful load off. He sees the person who will decide whether he moves up the list for a transplant or not.

I'm a little bit...weird? about him being well; I think I'd like for the doctor to see him at his sickest; after all, two weeks ago, my mother wasn't sure he was going to get to Christmas. Yet now, he's looking really good. And it felt really reassuring to be over that fence of 'lets try x,y,z' - into proper 'waiting for a transplant'.

Connor finished kinder for the year; he's a bit miffed actually, as he was pretty sure that he was on his way to school next year. 4yo kinder to him is going to be an obstacle for him getting to school - and I have a funny feeling that the whole year is going to be viewed like this. A big pain in the butt that he has to tolerate until he gets to school. He's looking forward to Santa coming with a vengance.

Riley did so very well at school; he aced prep and has grown into a boy that I am so very very proud of. If I could put into words just how I am feeling about this boy right now, I would. But all I can say is that my heart is bursting with pride.

I love that they both still believe wholeheartedly in Santa; I'm loving that they both get it and are both being swept away by the magic. It's also a beautiful thing to take both their minds off their grandfather.

Christmas day will probably be spent at mum and dads; provided we can keep him out of hospital for Christmas. It's only going to be us, my parents and R & J - people who have known my parents for 35 years. So, no one that Dad doesn't feel comfortable with; and no one who hasn't seen my father at his worst before. Then we're off to G's brothers house for dinner; which is going to be really nice, given the other 2 IL's aren't coming. It might be there that I succumb to this increasing need to write myself off for awhile. If I only had a day spare to be hungover. ;)

Once Christmas is done, we start really moving forward with the packing. I think the kids are going up to the farm for a few days; I'm looking forward to it just being me here. I'll have to work for some of every day; but having my own 'holiday' every evening is something I am really looking forward to. I will go up after work New Years Eve and spend NYE with the kids and Grants family.


Thursday, December 3, 2009

Same horse, different rider

Dad's home (again). We now have the fun job of trying to REALLY minimise all sugar; because the lactulose is sugar rich and he needs it, his diet now has to try and compensate for the lactulose. Which means pretty much bugger all sugar in his diet. Oh yes, and low sodium. As in minimal.

He walked out of the hosptial being told to have 'no sugar'. WTF does that mean? How can one have no sugar? His sugar rate today is 19 - and that is with no sugar & one piece of fruit all day; so I think this may be the standard sugar level for him. But, it's all trial and error, just like everything else.

My sister doesn't think I am being fair making him eat porridge for breakfast - he doesn't like it you see. I'm in the 'big shit' camp - *I* don't like him being in hospital either, so we're even. Mum is just fubby dubbying along; so again, it falls to the older responsible one.

I'm hoping to finish my Christmas shopping today. I have never been so unorganised. Usually by this time I have cards ready to send, presents wrapped and can actually do some baking and festive type things; this year I am being dragged by the hair towards December 25 and I cannot stand it. I just want to move house; because you see, I have it in my head right now that life as I know it will come back when I move. Hah.

Packing for the house is going slowly but surely. Most of what we don't need is packed and G is going to start shifting it into the new garage this weekend; we can't really do a heap of that until after Christmas/New year. We're still using a heap of stuff you see, but once I know what is going on for Christmas, I'll be able to pack/sort more stuff.

I'm debating the doctor again; I am starting to have panic attacks, not sleeping and find it difficult to control myself; both in anger and tears. I realise that it's all due to the pressure I am under; but there is very little I can do to ease that pressure. I don't like the idea of 'oh, just take a pill and you'll be fine' - but at the moment, that's all I feel I can give myself. I dont' have time to fall into a hole and I certainly don't have time to work through it all on my own.

Jayne talks about her father ino this post; so much of what she says resonates with me. Watching this strong, fit, stubborn bugger end up a shell of his former self is almost too much to bear; If I had to watch my dog go through this, I'd put him down for his own benefit. Yet, us people, the most important race of all (in our own lunchbox) makes us go through hell and back before we say goodbye. *I* struggle with it - I can't even begin to imagine what Jayne goes through every day.

Lately I have been wishing he'd just die and get it over with. Not for our benefit; but for his. If he remembered that I have seen what I have; he'd be completely devastated. If he knew the street was watching when he got put into the ambulance, it'd kill him. If he heard the sympathy in so many voices asking 'how is he' - he'd be pissed off. If he heard some of the things he has said to us; he'd never look us in the eye again. Living the way he is; it's everything he didn't want. So, why are we all here?

I'll fight for him as long as he wants to fight. But, I think he's giving up; rendering it a hopeless cause. And, it probably is. But the realisation that he is not going to get over this is dawning faster and faster; and that is the hardest part.

2009 was meant to be a good year. So far as I'm concerned it can fuck right off.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Happy Birthday Dad

For your birthday you can have an extra dose of crazy, laced with low sugar levels and decorated with a buggered kidney. Awesome huh?? Now blow out those damn candles.

I know I only seem to write when things are bad; I must sound like a whinging old harpy. But, my blog is for me to say what I want how I want; and I don't really have many outlets except it.

The lactulose was causing too high sugar levels (for those playing at home, 28). So, off to the diabetic specialist we go. Who takes him off lactulose and gives him 2 pills to take once a day. Because 2 pills once a day is going to do exactly the same as 4 hourly doses of lactulose. I said then, that it would really fix him, or really fuck him - hello fucked.

Yesterday morning I called to say happy birthday. He answered the phone and was talking jibberish. Of course, I panicked and got him to get mum - you hear the phone fumble fumble drop - then mum picks up. 'Oh, you've just woken him up' she says and I heave a sigh of relief. Because, you know, imagine him getting sick on his birthday. 'happy birthday yada yada we'll see you tonight' - hang up and get on with everything else that has to be done today.

Riley had a birthday party so he went to that. No parents allowed, so we meandered up the road for a coffee and a yak. Party pickup - mum calls in a blithering mess; Dad is all over the shop.

Awesome.

Get there, try and get sugar into him; he can't even work out how to drink. Call the ambulance yada yada and spend 7 hours in emergency trying to work out WTF is going on here. Turns out now that something is causing a big issue with the kidney too - just to add to the fun. Sugar is 2 - but no one has told my mother what too low is. Fuckers.

They've gone back to lactulose.

I just keep hearing that jack in the box song - 'round and round the mulberry bush, the monkey chased the weasel' - and it's our life story. Except when jack goes 'pop' - that will be my brain exploding.

We'll get there.

In other news - all is good. Boxes freaking everywhere and I am outright lying to my children - i.e. ' why don't we put this battered broken toy into the box to 'go to the new house'' (aka lets just chuck the freaking thing out and by the time we get to the new house you'll have forgotten about it). Only problem is, Connor wants to help so has chucked ALL toys into the box. So, now I have to go through it again. Lying to your children will always bite you on the ass.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Mish mash...

It just gets better doesn't it? SIL, the one who threw the tanty about doing Kris Kringle because buying shitty $2 made-in-china presents for the 14 neices and nephews is more 'personal' so we're doing it her way - isn't even COMING for Christmas day.

'She didn't know'. My eye she didn't.

I don't even care. Well, I do really, in that none of us have spent a Christmas with G's family for upteen years because of TWO SILs'; and now we're doing it again. I'd love to call her and tell her exactly what I think of her - but she's not my family.

I've got enough of my own family to deal with, thanks all the same.

In other news; I caved and watched Twilight last night.

I have read all four books and was transported back to the 'babysitters club' years and found all four books awful. Sorry, but I did.

With all this damn hype about Vampires etc, I thought, well, I best cave. So, I did.

And it will be probably the only time say that I liked a movie better than a book.

But I'm not running to the midnight session of the next one; trust me on that.

My super-duper-cool friend and amigo Ames has released her very own book. Which is about 37 times better than the twilight book. Get it. It's awesome. How to be a vampire

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Extended family - Who'd have them?

You would think that I'd be a frenzy of boxes and packing and stressing and hurrying right now; work is picking up (being involved in refrigeration, it happens..), Christmas is on it's way and our whole lives need to be picked up and moved.

Instead, we are going to see old friends of ours for lunch, bash around their pool and do a whole lot of nothing.

I have stopped being all things to all people. The perfect wife, the perfect mother, the perfect assistant manager and the perfect daughter. Because, too often, they collide and I am constantly feel as though I am letting someone down. The pressure cooker went bang on Friday night; G came home with tea to find a bottle of wine gone; and me sitting on the deck, tears silently running down my face.

His family have pissed me off badly this week. Not all of them, but half of his brothers and their other halves. Their hypocrisy astounds me, their self importance baffles me and their expectations are endless.

It was C's birthday on Wednesday. He had a ball; ran into R's room and dragged his school uniform out because 'now he can go to school'. G's eldest brother called and pretended he was Jamie Whincup - which made C's day. "MUM. JAMIE.WHINCUP.SPOKE.TO.ME'. It cost Chris nothing and it made his day.

The others. Well. After this big hoo ha about not doing Kris Kringle because 'it's more personal to get all the children a present' and 'I really want my daughters to get a present' - not one single thought came to C from either of them on his birthday. But, an invitation to a Christening did.

Each year, I send each and every neice/nephew a $20 voucher and a card. It's just something small to say that we are thinking of them on their birthdays. The most personal day of the year, I'd have thought. But, because it's not their child - big deal.

Before J had children, the kids would be lucky to get a card with some money in it for Christmas. Now he has children - we're all expected to buy presents because his children must have presents.

Instead of a thought for C's birthday, an invitation to a Christening came. Now, I'm not big on Christenings, or any sort of religion for that matter, but I am very respectful of those who are not hypocritical about it; those who live it. I once knew a mormon who I had a hell of a lot of respect for; because she lived her beliefs. This Christening? Present grabbing exercise; no more no less.

For starters, mum and dad aren't married. And I wonder how do you christen children in a church, when the religion itself would call them bastards? Money talks I imagine, but there is no way no how I would do any sort of religious ceremony on my children; we weren't married in a church (a chapel on some beautiful grounds), so how could we enter a church, without a sanctimonious marriage and christen our children? Doesn't work with me; but I would go to keep the peace.

Anyway. That same day, G's work Christmas party is on. At Puffing Billy. With Christmas presents for the kids, lollies and a whole lot of fun.

I assumed we'd be sucking it all up (as usual) and going to the stupid hypocritical christening so G could just 'keep the peace'. We're not though. He has chosen to go to the Christmas party. So they've hurt him more than I thought too; because he'd never do that.

Family suck.

PS: Dad is still same old same old; they won't start dialysis until his bowel starts bleeding and not coping with the treatment now. Awesome. Sane dad or insane dad, depending on the day. We're also goign to try and get into the house early so that we can have christmas there together; as we're starting to think it'll be dads last.

PPS - my sister hasn't found a job; my stupid parents are paying her. Would you get off your butt and look for a job when you were getting paid good money to sit on your arse? I have lost an awful lot of respect for that girl.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Regroup

I 'shut up shop' this weekend.

Not literally; although, once I was done with the kinder fete, I just about ran home. But, my family needed time as a family; and I wanted to be part of that.

G and the kids came down and had a great time at the fete. It was lovely to watch them together; I was even a tad envious that I couldn't be part of what they were at the time. Watching them without them knowing, I saw so much in their faces, their walks and their behaviours toward each other.

G loves those kids. It sounds so very blase I know, but he loves them. Watching his face light up when R got his face painted (R is nearly 7 and has only ever had it done once in his life - about 2 months ago), and laughing at C, who was trying to do somersaults on the jumping castle, just melted my heart.

Once we were home, we went out into the park with the kids bikes and him and I sat on a rug whilst Harvey dog wandered about and the kids tore down the hill on their bikes. We talked about what we wanted, where we wanted and why we wanted. Days like those are the days that bind us together; and whilst we did nothing important, it was a beautiful day spent with those I love most in the world.

We played trouble with the boys and ate a late dinner. Once the kids were showered, we put Harvey dog inside and bundled into the car down to the local park where our town festival was on. Pulled up a patch of grass and watched.






There's something really special about fireworks. I don't quite know what, but I felt happy. Sitting there with hundreds of other members of my community, watching my boys eyes light up with all the pretty lights, I felt complete. As though I have accomplished something I have been trying to do for a long time.
I think I can forgive.

I think I already have.


I caved this morning and rang mum; dad is doing really well. He's having regular gastro something or other (a tube down his throat to see how the bowel is handling everything) and, apart from reflux and heartburn, he's doing really well. One big change of note; the carbs have been backed right off on a hunch. And I think that it's working.

My logic is; when you go on a diet, you're told to eat low GI foods because they take longer to process. When your bowel is being used to flush crazies, logic says that you don't really want to tie it up with stupid carbs. So, on a logic hunch, we've cut back his carbs. And he's been NOT crazy for an entire week. And not just NOT crazy; SANE. Nearly coming-back-to-work sane.


I don't want to get my hopes up that we're finally managing something; I'm simply not prepared to crash as hard as I did earlier. But, it's a positive, and I'll take what I can get.


The rest of Sunday was spent packing and baking. I am beginning to simplify again and I feel really good about it. I have much more room in the new house in which to store stuff, make stuff and DO stuff; the possibilities are endless.


I want Santa to bring a sewing machine. Or, failing Christmas (hello, we've just bought a new house!!) - birthday. But, I want to learn to sew.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Finding the constant

I look forward to moving. It's funny; you pack up all the same stuff that you have gotten, dump it somewhere else - and it feels like a whole new life.

I am looking forward to my new house. To having more storage than I know what to do with; to being able to stock my pantry properly and fit another freezer in. To being able to keep jars and ingredients with which to bake.

I am looking forward to my vegie patch; I have already started vaguely drawing up plans and am going to start preparing it for Winter next year.

I am looking forward to simplifying again. Things around here have been so ridiculously complicated that I feel as though I have just wound myself up in a tight ball and am unable to untangle it. So, we will pack up and have a 'new start'.

It is the 'new' start of a long life. Many things are in the pipeline for changing; but the one thing I was so sure would change - has actually been about the only constant. My family.

My little beautiful family are all I have that is constant in this world; it's very humbling to know that. I know I made the right decision way back here and the more things change and get harder and harder to deal with; the more certain I am that I have all that I need.

Slowly things are starting to sort themselves out in every other which way; and I know that things will work out one way or another. I've given up fighting and making attempts to change things/see things differently with regards to my father; all we can ever do there is ride the ups and the downs. The ups and the downs aren't quite as severe these days, which is definately a good thing; although they are as constant as ever.

My extended family are also riding a wave of their own; accepting this, and all the other changes that have happened with my sister leaving and dad being sick. Some have, some haven't; and the way they choose to ride their wave is of no business of mine. I realise now that I am not so strong that I will never break; I have now broken, the cyst has burst and is now starting to heal for me. The others? Well, I'm not sure.

All I can do is make sure my one constant stays happy. My family and my boys.

Connor is FOUR next week. THAT is scary.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

The house

Our new kitchen





A bit of our backyard; I cannot wait to read the Sunday papers out here
The entrance. Where we'll be curled up in Winter.






Tuesday, October 27, 2009

We got it.

The house. We settle in mid Jan.

I will post some pictures once I work out how to get my new address off them; but trust me when I say it's bewdiful.

Spent far more than we wanted, but doesn't everyone? Not out of our depth though, so we'll be fine in our beautiful new HOUSE!!!

Monday, October 26, 2009

I think the eyes have it

After the dramas of last week, a group of friends and I went out for a nice dinner, a few drinks and a few laughs. As usual, I was wearing my contacts.

Toward the end of the evening, my contacts started playing up a bit; so I pulled them out. My eyes were extremely sensitive, but I figured I'd be fine in the morning because we WERE GOING HOUSE HUNTING AND I NEEDED TO SEE.

Uh-uh. Not in Shel land.

I woke up Saturday morning and my eyes were so sensitive that even the fridge light with sunglasses on was too much. Awesome.

Off to the doctor.

He gives me Chlorsig and some anasthetic which helped immensely until it wore off. At each house, I would drop in some anasthetic and bob was my uncle. (BTW, we found a house, we'll find out tonight whether we were/are successful).

Went home and spent the day in bed.

Next day; same thing. Doctor gave me the wrong drug. Awesome.

Can see now though; which is lucky because there is a big meeting at work this morning.

Dad is on a downhill slope again; I am guessing Wednesday.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Grabbing the reins

He's home again today. He looks better.

I just wish I knew it was going to stay that way; that I know he will always know who I am.

Until the next episode, I grab the reins, get back on the horse, and put one foot in front of the other.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

The Wedding and everything after

Sorry dear internet, this is more for me than for anyone else; I need to spit this all out.

I woke up yesterday morning all set for, what was going to be, a big day. My little sister was getting married and we had a day full of hair, makeup, photos and pretties.

Mum called at 8.45 to say that she was going to be late; dad was not well. She was crying and tizzed - she didn't think he'd be capable of coming. He was worried about what the savages were going to do. Being the level headed one, I told her that we'd get our hair done first, get home and we'd re-evaluate before we told J anything.

We get home, hair all done, and we check on Dad. He's not all that, so I dose him again and put him back to bed. We didn't have to even get him organised until 3, so we still had a fair bit of time up our sleeves. All the girls were getting ready there, so we could easily check on him throughout the morning / early afternoon.

Toward early afternoon, he was much more lucid and could talk properly and even he thought he could do it. The other option was, both G and I would pull out of the wedding and come as guests - so we could look after Dad. But, by the time the photographer turned up, he was up and dressed. Not all that, but he was there.

Cut a long story short; he walked her down the isle. He actually DID IT. It was bittersweet; in that he was so sick, but he did it.

I had a moment when he got up and did the bridal waltz. Not all smooshy because of him and my sister; but because he looked so ill. I went outside and pulled myself together before I sucked it up and went inside.

But he did well. I bought him home at 8.30, gave him his medicine and put him to bed. He was exhausted. Utterly spent, but we were so proud of him (and pleased for J) that he'd done it. I went back to the wedding for the final hour.

Because I'd decided to drive, I bought home Mum, R, J and my G. We all went to mums, I had a coffee whilst the others (mum mostly) were just so relieved we'd all gotten through it unscathed (relatively) that they all let loose and had a few too many drinks. We all laughed and just revelled in the weight off all of our shoulders.

G and I left at 3am. I'd checked on Dad; mum and the others were having a ball. Not rowdy, not blind; but laughter and fun. Finally. He'd had his last dose just before I left; and we expected that he'd be out and stuffed for at least 2 weeks.

At 5.30am this morning, mum called hysterical. Dad had vomited everywhere and didn't understand what was happening to him. I had a quick shower and went over there. We were beyond managing him at home; it was time for the ambulance.

He didn't recognise me. He looked at me and drew a blank. Right then and there my heart broke. My dad doesn't know who I am. But I sucked it up and we spoke with the ambulance and I followed in the car down to the hospital.

We get to hospital and he thinks he's in Geelong, it's 2005 and he's 28. Mum, at least, is mum. Me? 'Oh, she's....a nurse?'. Ouch.

We stayed until we'd seen the doctor, he'd had the drip inserted and was asleep. Mum was still well under the influence and hadn't showered or anything. So, we went home and I told mum to have a shower and a sleep; I'd pick her up later and we'd go back.

But, I couldn't. I am devastated. I know in my head that he knows who I am and that once he becomes normal, he'll know who I am and all will be fine. But, for the moment, I don't have the children, I am in the car alone and I am starting to lose the facade of the strong one.

I howl. I cry as though I was dying and actually felt physcial pain. I felt as though I was nothing, nobody and that my own father didn't know who I was. I was the one who has held everyone together and kept everyone strong for these last two years; and he doesn't even know who I am.

I get inside and I am a mess. G gets up and just holds me. I collapse onto the floor, crying for all the times I have wanted to lose it, but not been able to. For all the times I have held onto this mask of togetherness for the kids, or for mum, or for my sister, or for my work. I cry for me, and how unfair it all is and how much pressure I feel.

I have a pain in my chest which I know is telling me that I am about to fall apart. But, I dont' have time to fall apart. I have two kids, no house and a full time job. And my biggest fear; if I do take a big breath, let go of the cliff that is me coping and drop down into a sea of some sort of breakdown - is what if I can't pull myself back together again?

My head knows that my father knows me, loves me and that this is just the illness. But my heart? Is broken.

I can't bear to even call my sister; I can't fathom hearing again how he cried when she spoke to him. How he remembered her. Because, right now, even the slightest thing gets me crying and I don't have the ability to just stop and fall apart.

And I dont' think I can put myself back together if I do.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

All my friends are getting married...

Well, it's my sister actually, but hey, it was the first thing that popped into my head!

Today is the day that the last thing that has prevented us from house hunting starts and ends.

My little sister is getting married.

It all starts at 8.30 when we head off to the hairdressers. Not sure what they will do with mine, it's lopped; but I'm not too fussed.

I have orthotics now and it seems to have made a grand bit of difference which is good - I can now walk properly and my feet bones aren't bashing around. We won't know how much difference it makes to my quad muscle for a few weeks yet, but as it stands, they work a treat.

The boys will be page boys and are accompanying me down the isle; it will be so nice to see them all dressed up! Grant is a groomsman too, so hopefully we'll get a few nice photos of us all together.

Starting tomorrow, it will become all about the house hunting. And packing. Ick. I'm going to start packing slowly but surely, there is an awful lot of stuff that we won't use between now and then.

Wish us luck!

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Aint it weird

It's funny how life gives you nice little reminders sometimes.

This week things have just plodded along nicely. I got to eat lunch and read the local paper on Friday because I'm finally getting on top of this work. By the time the new year starts, I'll definately only have to work 4 days. And that fourth day will be a push. But, for now, I'm liking it alot.

Rileys surgery went really well. Except he power vomited right through my car. Apple juice and blood clots. My car was detailled on Wednesday.

Today I decided to take the kids to the movies - they hadn't seen 'Up' yet, so I thought I'd be a good mummy and take them. My sister decided to come, and my parents decided to meet us for lunch afterward. So, off to the movies.

Firstly, she cried (well, not really, but metaphorically speaking) because I got 2 small popcorns. I thought the kids could share one, and we could share one; given we were going out to lunch and all. 'That's not going to be enough' she scoffed; and when it wasn't (for her anyway!) I got a smirk and a 'I told you so' look as she went out to buy more.

We went to lunch and it was ok - about as ok as lunch with your parents, whom, you have seen most days of the week anyway, gets. We eat (ok, I eat) far FAR too much and roll back to the car to go home.

Except we've forgotten to pay for parking. I don't think I have ever paid for parking in this shopping centre; shopping is not something I tend to do much anyway. But, we haven't paid, and the door will not open for us.

Instead of walking (at best) 100m to pay $3 for parking, she expected me to sit there and argue with the guy who answers the phone if you have a problem, as to why we shouldn't pay for our car park; because they 'don't have a pay place anywhere NEAR here'.

I walked the 100m.

Lazy, egotisitcal and selfish. Only 3 reasons in 3 hours why what happened at work happened.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

It was bound to happen...

Heartburn that is. These past two weekends have been filled with so much food, wine, laughter, tears, panic attacks and fun that it's kind of half expected that I wake this morning feeling like I'm burping razor blades.

But oh what fun!

Last weekend was a trip up to see some very old and dear friends. It is a trip I look forward to and enjoy every single year; and again, I wasn't disappointed. We had a ball and I miss them terribly.

This week - work work work work. Nothing new there. Dad had another 'episode' (sounds so much more dignified than an attack of the crazies doens't it!!); but we managed him at home (with the specialist on the phone) - so whilst it's a down - he hasn't had one in 6 weeks - we managed it without hospital.

This weekend; Caught up with a girlfriend I hadn't seen in aaageess and drank a beautiful bottle of 2001 Cab Sav with her, before tumbling into bed at midnight.

Yesterday was my sisters hens day. An afternoon of pedicures and make up (that wasn't all that, I looked like bloody BOZO THE CLOWN) before we trekked off to the Chinese restaurant for dinner and a bit of a show. Nacho (seriously) did a big puppetry of the penis demonstration which was rather funny (even if a bit icky, t'was 18 times better than a stripper would've been!!) before coming home and speaking to my best friend in Perth for a few hours.

Daylight savings starts today; clock is foward and I've lost my beautiful morning hour.

Tomorrow; Riley has his 3rd set of grommets and adnoids out. We are grommet veterans, but nervous adnoid virgins. Wish him luck!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Busy

It has been ridiculous around here of late. Since the big bang, I have been working flat out. If I'm not working, I am cleaning. If I am doing neither of the above, I am parenting. Or doing 4yo Kinder. Lets say I'm busy enough for the minute.

The house is OFFICIALLY sold. For a price that went above and beyond what we could have expected. We had 4 offers and I am so very glad that the people who have bought it did; they appear to really love it and will look after it (in particular my gardens!!).

We move out in January, so that's another thing that has worked really well. Considering there's not a heck of a lot out there, a bit of time will hopefully bring *our* house out and it'll all work out. I'm too busy to even worry if it doesn't!

School holidays have started here, which is yet another thing I have to work around. Once we get through all the 'already planned, organised and can't get out of' things, I will be able to organise myself a little better. I don't work well when I am not organised; and working 'this Tuesday, that thursday etc' ATM doesn't help.

Everything has settled a little at work; I'm doing my job, her job & Matts job (her other half who quit too - a good thing for him). M stayed; he and I work very well together, and he's happy with what I'm doing. It used to be very 'work xx, xx and xx' - now it's more 'don't care, just tell me when you're not going to be here'. Which has been really nice. There's a fair bit of pressure in that I have time limits on things now; but ATM I really enjoy it.

Connor has just stormed up here now (did I tell you how much I DON'T like having a child who wakes as early as I do!??) so I will close in saying that I am having a THREE DAY WEEKEND with some of my best friends in the world. I leave early (even for me!) Friday morning and don't come home till Sunday night. And the best bit - EVERYONE is telling me to go and have fun! Not one single 'oh, but what about work'!!!

Monday, September 14, 2009

Both gone

The house and my sister. I start today. The house is sold; but we just dont' know who too yet. It'll be officially sold on Wednesday.

Now to find us a house!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Bang - now to see where the remanents lay...

I was going to do more 'tada' posts; but something is wrong with my mouse and I can't drive the tab options here for some reason (if anyone can assist the luddite, my mouse wants to 'clip' things all the time instead of just pointy point and highlight like it should).

So, instead, I'll tell you about the big bang.

The rest of my world is just fine. There is plenty of interest in the house, so we expect that to be gone in the next week or so (thank CHRIST because these inspections are killing me!). Dad is still on the up (we found out why everyone wants to believe he's some closet swilling alco - and that is because apparently, according to the liver clinic, some ridiculous amount of people end up with transplant - AND START DRINKING AGAIN; logic much??), the kids are fine and Grant is fine (except he ate a dodgy sausage roll yesterday - I say suffer because he didn't eat his lunch!).

But work. Oh my god, work.

As I have probably told you, I work for family. Since Dad got sick, that family has decreased by 1. M, who has been there since I was like 3 (there are old tables we still have in the workshop in which I have 'written' letters to him) has taken over the running. That was my fathers wish, and I am more than happy with the arrangement.

My spoilt little bitch sister though? Epic fail.

She is not coping with it at all. When Dad was in charge, she could steamroll him and yell and scream etc and really, have nothing happen (I do blame my father for most of what has happened, he created it and now needs to fix it). She can't tell M to get lost, can't tell him anything really; because he simply will not put up with her shit (have I told you that I heart M??). So, the little digs, backstabs and pain in the arse attitude have just climbed higher and higher.

M has been doing both his job and my fathers; and has done far better than anyone could've thought. His wife is in hospital (knee reconstruction), he has 4 youngish children and is doing two peoples work.

J says to no one in particular yesterday (and please picture and hear the *sigh*, woe is me, drop of the shoulders the world is on it type thing) 'The company cannot keep running as it is'.

I meander out of my office and ask her why she thinks this is so.

She babbles here and there and comes up with 'There are four quotes that he hasn't done that are sitting on his desk' (meaning M. And let me say that if Dad were here, there'd be 34 at any given time and he'd be feeling qutie 'caught up').

I then say 'hellooo, his job doesn't just stop because Dad isn't here you know. He's doing the boys, the quotes, the computer programming, the invoices, the schematic drawings aswell as Dads job'.

'Hummpphh' is the reply and nothing else is said.

Until later.

Turns out her nemesis (she does have a few) has overheard the conversation and runs to M to 'watch his back'. I get a phone call from M beyond furious, beyond hurt and honestly, in the 30 years I've known him, have never heard him like this. He quits, is hurt and cannot believe she cannot see everything he has / is doing to help both our father and the company.

I am so shaken I drive over to speak to my father. He's completely floored; see, no one has told him any of the little narky things that have been going on because he's sick. I lay it all on the table, plus what happened tonight and he's floored.

He calls M and M hits him right between the eyes with everything that is going on. He will not/cannot work with her and there's going to have to be a choice.

Dad calls sister and next thing, I am the biggest arsehole in the world because *I* dobbed. Until she found out what happened.

I haven't found out what has gone on since; but at last check, she was a sobbing 'no one loves me' mess.

Is it a really bad thing to hope that your sister gets the sack? Even though it means I will have to go back full time? (or at least 4 days)......

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Little bit of a 'tada'










The whole before and after photos. You can now really see just how crap a photographer I really am!!!

Friday, September 4, 2009

Still going....

Just a quick one; he's STILL not in hospital!!! Can I start to whisper that I *think* this time we're managing things?

House is on the market; when I get more than 5 minutes to scratch myself, I will post some photos. They come up really well and there is an awful lot of interest!! It went on the net Wednesday, we've had 20 enquiries and 2 inspections already!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

7 days

It's now been 7 days since dad was last discharged. SEVEN days. I'm just waiting for it all to fall down again.

The house is almost ready. I will take some photos today and show some 'before' and 'afters'. Trust me, it's not all that; but it came up well (I think).

Back to walking on eggshells...

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Err, hello, I'm Shel and I'll be your blog host today...

I apologise for my lack of update; things around here have been beyond ridiculous.

Dad: has been in and out of hospital since my last post. They are talking dialysis (cleaning out the toxins in the blood by pulling it out, cleaning it and putting it back again) if this keeps on going. We have ditched the first specialist and now have a new Liver specialist and a gastroenterologist. Things aren't looking up or down; they are just looking. So, whilst they are just that, so will I be.

House; is almost ready for market. The photographer will be here Monday week, so it's been very much 'sorting, moving, packing and prettying'. I do have some photos of each room 'before' and very soon I will take some of 'after'. The painter has finished inside (except for whatever I write on my list between now and Thursday) and only has a little bit of the outside to do (because Grant will not have time to finish). It's come up well; hell, if I wasn't selling it, I'd buy it!!

Kids; gosh, considering what has been going on around here of late, the kids have been awesome. House full of wet doors? No problem. Mum stressed over one thing or another? Eeasy. They are both good kids at the end of the day - Riley is getting another award at school on Monday. I will be unable to attend, but it worked beautifully that G will be able to.

Today we take some stuff to mum and dads (only for storage, we're minimising the pictures/trinkets etc), drop into work to pick up a few bits and pieces and then we're home to clean out the shed, polish the floors and continue prettying/cleaning.

Our final home run will include cleaning up outside, getting some pretty little plants to brighten up the place and the RE comes over Sunday to pick up keys.

We haven't even started looking; I refuse to start that until I finish this. So, one more week.

There's been a bit of an 'incident' with G's family. There are 4 families (plus G's parents) and in total there are 12 children. Each year, we have been buying Christmas presents for all of them; and as more came, it was starting to get ridiculous. So, at Christmas, the 3 girls and 1 husband (because the 4th wife didn't come up that time) discussed the idea of Kris Kringle for the children. That way, they would all get something more substantial (durable!!) and not 18 things that are made in China and break in 3 days. All good; what a good idea etc etc.

This week, I put forward who had who for the KK. 4th wifes husband hasn't told her, and she feels 'it's more personal to give all the kids presents and I'm still upset we don't do it for the adults'. Because, you know, what you need is more shit you don't need. Then I receive another email from 4th wife telling me that '3rd wife didn't realise it was for the children, she thought it was for the adults and she doesn't want to do it either'. Which is a complete load of rot, because we all discussed it in depth. But, hey, if she wants to lie, who am I to judge?

So, we say 'whatever, I think it's stupid, but whatever'. 1st family (we can be the 2nd family) also say it's stupid and an utter waste of time and money, as do G's parents. I now an am uber bitch in 4th wifes eyes (because *I* organised it without telling anyone, or at least, have not been clear enough; 4th wifes husband has wisely shut up and played dumb, and with the 3rd wifes lies, is the only conclusion she can reach) and have sensibly not heard from 3rd wife.

Considering neither 3rd or 4th wife remember anyones birthdays, all this 'happy families and Christmas is important' rubbish is running rather shallow. It looks more and more like a present grab, whereby families 1, 2 & 3 pay less attention to 'spending limits' and more to what the particular child will like; family 4 spend not a cent more than the limit and mostly buys things that do not fit, work or appropriate.

I am very dirty on that. But, what do you do?

So, I shall continue on. I'm certainly NOT looking after myself; I'm either not eating at all for 2 days, or eating rot after I've not eaten for 2 days. My face looks like I'm 16 again and whilst my weight hasn't gone one way or another; I feel very routund and tired. The better I deal with dad, the better I will deal with life. And it's not going to get better, or easier, or managed. There are too many variables, however slight, that cause a relapse. So, we just wait out the 5 days until we go back again and on the 5th day, he rests and gets dripped and managed in a controlled environment. Even outside temperature is a variable for him. How much he walks, whether he has too little water when it's 2 degrees higher than what it was the day before are variables.

It sucks. I'm getting a tree full of lemons. I'm making lemonade out of it; but it has a very bitter taste.

Monday, August 10, 2009

It all starts to become a little much when it's real

You know when you fall over and scrape your knee; it hurts like a bastard, but you know that eventually it will all be fine. That the cut will slowly scab, itch and eventually, leave barely a mark. In 12 months time, you'll giggle at the ridiculous squeal you omitted when you suffered such an injury.

I've put all this stuff with my father into this category. Bung liver? Pfft. Give it a few years and he'll be right as rain. He's done nothing even remotely untoward for at least 7 years now; surely that has to count for something? Attack of the crazies? Pfft; one drip full and he's back to normal.

Except, it's starting to not go that way.

Today it hit me like a big bag of potatoes. He's dying. This is not some little issue with a knee; or something that will heal up and be gone. It's here to stay, warts and all. It will be what takes my father away in the end.

I went over there today and he looked awful. 'It's just the tablets' both of them are telling me; but do they really think that? Or, like me, are they trying desperately to make it fit into the 'it'll be fine' box - when it obviously is not going to fit there?

I have no idea what to do. I want to do so much; yet, at the same time, I want to cover myself in the blanket called denial and just pretend that he's just 'got the flu' and will be back at work this week. That it won't be a long term thing because he'll be fine.

But, I'm really starting to doubt that now. I am honestly starting to think that this will be the death of him.

And I dread that moment.

A song, from the early 90's keeps popping in my head; and it's filled with bits of advice for living. It basically says 'worry, but know that worrying is as effective as trying to solve an algebra equation by chewing bubble gum'. Which, is true. But, it's like living on tenderhooks.

'How is he today?' has become my mantra.

And each time he gets better, and then slides backwards, I feel like an over-optimistic fool. I nearly shout it from the rooftops that 'he's fine' when, for a whole day, he's fine. But, the following day turns into a bad one; and I feel even more useless than I did before.

Surely I would know when my father is going to die?

What scares me the most, is what my gut is telling me. I can't even put that into words.

I have been keeping myself relatively busy with work, the house and the kids. It's actually been pretty good; work all day, come home and pack/unpack some more stuff, do the dinners and lunches and go to bed. But some nights, like tonight, I find myself shovelling mulch in the pouring rain crying my heart out.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

I said it was going to be a busy week, but really....

Well, as it turned out, I was very busy this week; it was just very little of the above got done. I will apologise for the length now, because it's going to be a big one.

Monday; The day was at work, the night was shifting furniture, packing boxes and sorting half the house out for the painter.

Tuesday; was a normal day. Except I also had kinder duty. So, school, groceries, swimming, kinder, lunches, dinner etc. Night was moving furniture around, getting organised for my course the next day.

Wednesday; I did it. I got to the course, got the kids to school and everything was rosy. The course itself is really interesting and perfect for what I need. It also helped considerably that the teacher was very nice to look at.

Let me pretext what comes next by saying that Connor had grandparents day at school on Wednesday; and that mum and dad were going up there.

At about 2pm Mr nice looking told us to go have a break. I checked my phone and saw that one of the guys from work rang. So, I go downstairs and call him back.

'Hows your Dad?' he asks.
I ask him WTF he's talking about; he was meant to be at Connors Grandparents thing, so he might not have ended up coming in at all.
'Where are you' he asks.
'In the city on that course' I reply.
He then gets into a complete dither, apologising because he thought I was with him etc etc. My sense of urgency grows and I nearly spit at him "what the bloody hell is going on?"

I call mum who says 'he's not right'. He has tried to plug his disposable razor into a power point, can't get his shirt on and is trying to call work with the TV remote. He's slurring, dizzy and he's not right. She tells me not to bother coming home (yeah sure).

I tell nice looking man I have to go, as my father is sick. He's totally fine with it and I shoot home. Walk into mums and near on die myself. He looks completely vacant and can talk, but very VERY slowly.

It takes him forever to tell me that 'he's fine' and that he'd 'spin out' if I took him to hospital. So, I call 000 and explain the scene to them. By this point, we are nearly positive he's had a mild stroke. Ambos come (lovely people they are) and whisk him off to hospital with mum in tow. Connor, who was at mums, announces to no one in particular that 'poppy has gone to die now'. I nearly agreed with him. G picks up Connor and I head up there too.

Midnight. After 5 hours of triage, shambles and tests, we finally get a general diagnosis. encephalopathy. So, not a stroke. Mum and I leave at 1am at least relieved to know he's not had a stroke and that this attack of the crazies is probably not permanent. They ask him todays date a hundred times; each time it changes. March 1990, June 2000 etc. As the hours progress and the thiamin? is dripped through him, he becomes more and more coherent.

The next day at the public hospital, we walk in to find a group of interns grading his alcohol withdrawal. Not a big thing for a great number, I give you that, but I nearly burst into tears at the fact that we were back at the fucking start with this place. I crack the sads and call his specialist. Until this point, we had no idea exactly what it was. Now we know it's his liver, we'll call him. So we did, and Scott moved him out of the public, into our local private hospital. Even that took 5 hours; and I was already driving him there.

Where are we now? Well, he's much better. He's had more tests done, another ultrasound and a CTG to measure any brain damage, which has come back OK. The ultrasound/Xray was only done yesterday evening, so we don't quite know if it's all gotten worse or not yet. But, he's coherent, looking much better and Scott thinks that it was all caused by a combination of lack of B12, constipation and (due to the constipation) a build up of ammonia, which likes to get rid of B12. And no B12 can make people go crazy; especially liver patients who have no B12 in reserve.

Where am I now? Sitting in a brothel of a house. The kids just barely made it a normal week, although no homework got done (for the first time this year). In addition to all of the above, Riley got 'buddy bear' to take home this week. I think 'Buddy bear' will be going to Auskick and the hospital and that's about it.

My sister called the place where I had my course and they are more than happy for me to start the course again; which was a nice little relief. Not that it mattered, but I'd have liked to have finished it. Now I get that chance.

The painter has been fantastic. Left him a key, he's painted and it has all come up well. At least that's one good thing that happened this week.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Busy much? I did ask for it though....

This week I am;
working
groceries
kinder duty
swimming
dropping children off @ 7am so I can make my 9am course for three days
Packing/unpacking for the painter
Organising carpet
Painting outside
Mulching
cleaning out the shed
Getting 4yo kinder offers out

amongst all the regular every day things you do when you have 2 kids. Except, my husband will be away.

We've decided we're going to take full advantage of this housing bubble and put ours out for sale before the bubble bursts. So, on Thursday, we got a real estate agent out to check it all out. Saturday, we got our painter friend over to price it. He starts Tuesday morning.

This week is going to hurt. But, if I get through this, the rest will be eassssy.

Just wish me luck!!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Finding the balance

Balance; I think I haz it. For the most part anyway. Usually, theres always something to throw out the equillibrium of life; it's work that is a hiccup when my home life is great, or something happens at home to throw out the balance when work is great. For the first time in (at least) awhile, things seem balanced.

I start a new course next week. For 3 full days, I have to train it to and from the city to attend a course regarding the work I am now doing.

I'm terrified.

Not only is the work I'm doing mostly a 'boys world' (the last course I was the only girl); but I have to get up, find a car park at the station, get the train with 18000 other people and spend 3 full days learning about this program.

By nature, I have a degree of agoraphobia. Although, it's more a fear of getting lost; and trust me, if there is an opportunity to get lost, I will find it. But, this fear takes over and I'm sure it's why I end up getting lost.

I won't sleep the night before it starts and I'll get there about 3 hours before it starts - I'll allow myself 'enough time' to get there.

I just hope I get something out of it.

And don't tell anyone, but I am vaguely thinking of #3. I can't believe I said that out loud.

Friday, July 24, 2009

A month has passed....

It's been a long time. But, it's been a long month. I sit here tonight, @ 7pm ready for bed and ready to leave all sorts of things in this month; in particular this week.

It seems as though my family is receiving a big hug tonight. The house is warm, the kids are happy and the jobs are done. I sit here, writing, feeling as though big things have ended for me. But good big things. But big (and exhausting!) nonetheless.

Firstly, my father. Is doing so well it nearly makes me angry. I know that sounds silly, but all that guesswork and predictions by specialists - turned out to be little more than the wrong medication. It nearly makes me cry just writing that - how dare these people put my family through that. Putting him through that. Over a freaking tablet.

But it is such a joy to see him now. The revelation that he will not live forever is not lost on him. He is living again. He's happy and interested; but he's also relaxed and willing to let go of the small stuff. His grandchildren make his eyes shine and the laugh lines come back to his face. Work is merely a blip on his radar these days and truly, it's a beautiful thing to see.

He's doing so well that he's off all his medication. All the reminders of his life past are gone; he's now considered a healthy person. And, even just having that mindset is doing him the world of good. He is going to see a dietician tomorrow (and if you know my father, you'll understand just how different that is for him) and is starting to really participate in life; rather than just watch it float by in a neverending spectacle of profit/loss reports, cash flow problems and employee issues.

On the bad side; those issues have now befallen my sister and myself. Which, is a double edged sword that, until today, were stabbing me constantly. I felt torn, confused and very very angry. But, today was the end of a great chapter in our family life.

I have probably said earlier that my sister and I are completely different people. Having two completely different people left in charge of a company is not a good thing; and don't ever let anyone tell you it is. Loving a person as a sister; yet loathing having to deal with her in a work environment is probably one of the harder things I have done. The tension, the stress, the anger, the sadness has now given way to mass waves of relief. The wound has burst; now it can heal. And god I hope it does.

This week also marked the first anniversary of the death of my friend, Craig. It's hard to believe that a year has gone since he died; but there was a beautiful memorial held for him with hundreds of people turning up and the convoy of motorbikes and all his old cars making their way up towards the place where his life could be celebrated was a perfect idea. Johnny Cash's 'Ring of Fire' far too loud on the stereo, a beer in his honour and a great number of laughs. He'd have loved it and I'm sure he was watching.

The day after was his birthday; so from a smiling memorial where all the good times were remembered, came the day where he should have been here. He just should.

A repeat of last years kinder issues also threatened to rear up it's ugly head again; mother lion came out and nearly didn't think before she acted. Now, as I sit here at the end of it all, contemplating the 'could've, should've would've's' - I'm glad I did have a think. Because, in the end, it was all a bigger deal to me than to him.

This week has also been the commencement of my position on the committee. 4yo kinder offers went out this week, and, because of my own stupidity, have mucked my own preferences up. I'm still not quite sure what to do on that front yet, but I have decided to wait and see. Whatever is meant to be, will happen.

We are still deciding what to do with the house; whether to keep it and rent it out, or just get rid of it. Slowly, we're fixing bits and pieces, cleaning things up and just in general making it a little easier on the eye. Whatever we do, none of this work will go to waste. And we're not really looking at anything else yet, and our friend the real estate agent doesn't know yet either. When it's time, it will all work itself out.

Our camping trailer also went this week. It now offers the ideas and dreams with what comes next. Should we get a caravan, or should we get another trailer? Dreaming about that is also a prominent feature in my life at the moment. But it's very nice to come home to an empty space where the trailer used to be.

My sisters wedding is also approaching rapidly and I am now almost positive that she doesn't want to marry him. But, talking to her about is futile; she will marry him anyway, even if it does turn out to be because she didn't want to admit she was wrong. All we can do is pick her up if and when she falls over; and take heart that he treats her well.

The children are both in a really good place now; Riley is at a stage where he's just turning into a proper 'school kid'. The beginning of Prep saw his uniform too big, too new and far too green. The colours are starting to fade, become more a part of him; and all that 'newness' has paved the way for growing up. He's a proper schoolkid now - and for him, it's a beautiful thing.

Connor is nearly 4 and cannot wait to be 5 and 'go to Auskick and big boy school'. Part of me is sad he wants to grow up so quickly - he is a big handful, so full of life, passion and laughter that his 'toddlerness' seems to have been extended. He is loved by everyone and that sparkle in his eyes has everyone chuckling 'Dennis the Menace' style. Whilst Riley has that coveted 'first grandchild' place in his Poppy's heart, Connor and him have a different sort of special bond. Connor does what Poppy would like to do, if only he weren't a 56 year old. And the laughs the two of them have together is more the heartwarming.

G. Dear G. Who is loving his job and is all things to all people. He is loved at work, and missed when he's there by us. Watching the three of them together, playing 'Power rangers' or 'Wrestling' just make me so happy. The way those children love their father is truly a delight to watch; and watching him just watching them sometimes nearly brings a tear to my eye. He's just so perfect a dad.

Tomorrow night we will go and help a friend clear up their property. It'll be just the two of us, as the kids are off to Grannys and Poppys for a sleepover. They are excited about it; and we are looking forward to, finally having a little bit of 'us' time - instead of falling in an exhausted heap at the end of the night. He'll be home soon and he can have his sigh of relief that another project is finished and under his belt as experience. He's so happy with his job and what he is doing; and it's taken a long time coming.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Plod plod plod

Again, the comfort that routine brings is calming. Like a big blanket and hot soup on a cold rainy winters day.

Why is it that sometimes I want to throw the rug off, tip the soup down the sink and run outside; and other times it's all I want in life?

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Shut down

Some people have a need to talk when there is something not so right in their lives. Me, I tend to shut down. Completely. Which, while is probably not very healthy, is something that I have just been used to doing.

This time I made a big effort and slightly unloaded. To 3 people.

Making yourself vulnerable is really hard. But, I am glad I did.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

The story of the goat

Has anything ever happened to you, that if you heard it from someone else; you'd never ever have believed it?

I was about 32w pregnant with C and happened to be loading Riley into the car to head home from mums. Mum had come out to say goodbye and we were nattering away in the sunshine. Normal day.

I heard a noise that sounded like a kid crying. It got louder and louder; but not in intensity, just that it was getting closer. Up at the T-intersection, was a guy walking past. With a kid. As in a baby freaking goat. Dragging it by the back legs.

Now. I should stop here and inform you of a number of things.

1. My mothers house is in definate suburbia. I mean, parks etc are nearby, but by anyones definition; this is suburbia. Please keep this in mind.

2. I (and my mother) are huge animal rights activists. Huge. Both of us happen upon stray animals quite regularly; all of our family pets have happened upon us. Molly, who was going to get drowned; spot, who we found in a wood pile etc etc. Any sort of animal cruelty makes me ill.

3. I am 32 weeks pregnant (and there is something about me and 32 weeks pregnant. Riley, I cracked my cocxyc and C, this happened and then 2 days later I smashed my face. I aint having more children for largely that reason alone!!)

4. It was rubbish day, so everyones bins were still out. Empty, but out.

Ok.

So, we see this guy walking up the road dragging a baby goat. After we picked our mouths up off the ground (after all, this is suburbia), mum starts yelling at the man to put the goat down.

He completely ignores my mother and keeps ambling along, with this dear little goat bleating behind him, dragged on his back.

My mother, instantly turned into a screaming harpie. It's like a switch for her; but she's screaming at the guy. I'm standing at the car with my son in his carseat gibbering away - he's got no idea what is going on.

Mum realises that screaming like a banshee is not working. She yells out to me to 'stay there, I'm going to call the police' and I'm still standing there dumbfounded that a freaking goat is being dragged up the road!!

The cleaner comes out to see what is going on and I think 'you know, I should just follow him and see where he's going so that I can tell the police where he is (you know, because the police are sooo going to come out sirens blazing over a goat being dragged up the road). I ask the cleaner to watch R whilst I follow.

I carefully make my way up to the corner, because I can't see him anymore. You know, I am a girl, I am 32 weeks pregnant and this guy could be an absolute nutter. (You know, just in case the dragging of the goat didn't confirm that).
k
l;k

I see him as soon as I turn the corner. He's screaming all sorts of something at me and I'm just trying to get the goat off him. I plead, beg, yell and even offer to buy the freaking goat; just please stop dragging it along the footpath like that.

Dunno if it was a good thing or a bad thing, but Mr nutty goat man decided to take my advice and stop dragging the goat. Very swiftly, he picked up the goat and carried it to our neighbours recycling bin. And put the goat into the bin, takes the bin and proceeds up the road with a wheely bin with a goat inside.

I was utterly horrified.

I'm still following him at this point; far enough away that I could run (yeah, who was I kidding, maybe I could've rolled) away, but close enough to be able to talk (?) to him and see where he was going.

He was getting rather agitated at me at this point, and started telling me to 'Piss off'. I kept repeating no, I was not going to piss off until he either let the goat go, or give the goat to me. That the police had been called and were on their way.

He started roaring at me - I was this, that and the other thing; and not only that, he did have a gun and was going to shoot me. I didn't believe he had a gun (seriously, he was more looney than scary), and figured his aim was going to be fairly off trying to lug a wheely bin, a goat and himself up, what was starting to be, a bloody big hill.

He crossed through the park and stopped to catch his breath. I stopped when he stopped, after all, I wasn't out to be a hero - I just wanted to know where he was going. Anyway, he took the goat out of the bin and went into the backyard of a house opposite the park.

I was rapt at this point. He was in a backyard, he couldn't possibly chuck the goat over a fence or anything, and the police were going to be there soon (of course they were, a goat was being dragged!!). But, of course, the owner of the house happened to pull into his driveway at just that time.

The little elderly gentleman hopped out of his car and looked at me funny; after all, I was pregnant, hot, frustrated and standing out the front of his house. I told him that maybe he might not want to go in there just yet; because there was a lunatic with a goat (I know, can you believe it!!) in his backyard and he might just want to wait for the police.

Instead of looking worried, this 4ft little italian man went beserk. Screaming obscenties (well, I'm sure they were, they sounded like it!!) with 'He got my goat, I keeeel him, I keeeel him!!' every so often.

He abrubtly turned from me and marched into his backyard. And dragged this lunatic out on by his ear. It was the oddest sight I had ever seen; this tiny little Italian bloke dragging out this 6ft tall lunatic. But, the weirdest bit was yet to come.

There were TWO goats. Little Italian man, as it turned out, also had a goat. And he thought that 6ft tall lunatic had stolen his goat. What started off as a screaming argument between them turned out to be a Thanks, have a great day amongst the two of them. Little Italian man shakes his hand, takes the goat and walks inside, not even looking backward at me.

I'm standing over the road with my mouth gaping open. I literally cannot believe it. Two goats in the one street.

So, little Italian man has gone inside and I am left all alone with one lunatic and no goat. He marches over to me, grabs my shoulder and starts screaming about some girl called Sue at the RSPCA. I say nothing except 'you should NOT drag a goat up the road' and eventually he just gives up and shoves me away. He starts up the bloody big hill.

I'm ok, but am very hacked off at the police; I bloody told them he was a nutter. And, not two seconds after he leaves my line of sight, Keystone cops style, 3 cars come screaming up the road. I pointed out the direction he took and wandered back to mums.

On the way home I realised what an idiot I had been and howled until I got to mums. Where we waited for the police to come and take a statement. And waited. And waited.

We're still waiting.

Now. If someone told you that story you'd not ever have believed it. But, true enough; every single thing happened!!

Bizarre or what?!!!

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Reasons why.....

It's not so much about the safety of wildlife for me; although it is certainly up there. It is the thought that, someone, somewhere, will find my poor cat on a road, runover by a car. Paralyzed from the neck down freezing. The fact that I would have to rely on someone else to reassure him, cry for him and be kind to him and take him to the vet at 6am, being prepared to pay whatever bill was required.

The fact that someone else would be notified that there is nothing the vet could do; he would have to be euthanased. And that my cat would be all alone. I would never forgive myself.

They are why I keep my cat locked inside. With an enclosure attached.

To the person whose cat it was I found on the road outside our house yesterday morning; it's ok. I looked after your cat, took him to the vet and reassured him that he was going to be ok. It was I that cried when the vet called and I who mourned his loss. I don't even think you'd know yet - your cat wasn't microchipped. Hopefully the council will notify you tomorrow.

Just so you know - he wasn't alone. And someone has spent 2 days crying over such a stupid loss.

If you do decide to get another animal - please keep him inside at night. Not for the wildlife - but for his own safety. PLEASE.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Random thoughts 101

Random thoughts (in no consecutive order);

Why am I feeling so lonely?


Dad: Fucking doctors and guessing. He's off to hospital today we hope....*it's all good, it's all good*.....they've taken him off ALL his medication, what happens if he has a heart attack, how are they going to treat him now, what happens if he does need a transplant, OMFG my father is going to die one day, how will I cope with that....*IT'S STILL GOOD, IT'S STILL GOOD*

I wish to christ this flu would bugger off. I've missed TWO WEEKS off work, Riley's missed one week of school and now Connor is on antibiotics. I'm living within these 4 walls and it's driving me mental, but it's nice being a stay at home parent sometimes, no it's not, I hate it and want to go back to work, but there's nothing to do at work, so there's no point in forcing the kids back when there's nothing to be running back for...

Mafia bash was good; talk about complete talk-it-up to my girlfriend though!! They changed it all around and it was the more BORING night ever!! Although, we DID see Mick Gatto which was very interesting....

Why am I feeling so lonely?


How's Jenn going? Is she enjoying her beautiful little boy? Oh how I hope so. I hope that this is everything and more she thought it would be. I should send her a card, would that be weird, no I know Jenn would love it...

Why am I feeling so lonely?


I should really apologise to K for the other week. I am still mortified over it. I know she doesn't care, but it showed me a few things. Her birthday is coming up, I will sit down and write her a letter. I know she'll understand and I will put what I want to say down far better than talking to her with that meathead around. Next time, we should do something completely different.

Why am I feeling so lonely?

I SHOULD get a real estate agent in here and value this place so we can see what we are up for whichever option we take. But it needs so much WORK!!! If I start doing something, we'll slowly get it where we're happy to sell it. It doesn't REALLY need THAT much work; I know, if I keep ontop of everything, it will all be ok. I don't want to sell this, I want to keep it and rent it, but no, I want to sell it and go in without a committment, I SHOULD see a financial advisor, but I don't want to overcommitt, but I DO want to keep this house.....

Why am I feeling so lonely?


Work is quiet when I AM there. tick, tock, tick tock go the hours. There are A HUNDRED things I could be doing other than sitting here and doing nothing. Why am I working? Why don't I just go find another job? Oh, but if I do that, I'll break Dad's heart and J will resent me forever, do I really want that, I don't CARE what she thinks, but she's my sister......

I've been a very good girl and done a whole heap of baking; keep on top of that. It's easy, it's half fun and the kids love my banana cake. Only do what you can do though; no pressure and you'll want to keep doing it. You don't eat the type of things that are in the freezer, so there is no worry about weight.

Saving money; if we can save money, we can move to the next thing we want to do. Oh, swimming/electricity/rates/kinder etc are due? R and C need new clothes and G went away for the weekend? Oh yes. We'll start saving THIS week. Oh that's right, it's J's and G's birthday...Ok, next week....arrggh, we are NEVER going to hit our goal at this rate!!!

All these excuses over weight loss; for what? Do what needs to be done and you will have the results you want to have? But who cares anyway, it's only me and there are far more important things to be worried about right now; and I'll start tomorrow. Stop the woe is me and hurry up. DO SOMETHING and you will SEE SOMETHING. No, pills will NOT help you, no one would give them to you anyway and you already know what to do, you just need to put up and shut up....

Why am I feeling so lonely?


FINALLY some rain. It's annoying and it's cold and it's icky - but that rain is more than needed. I hope hope hope that this will be the year we get some half decent rain; I am secretly terrified of what happens if we run out of water. Please rain for at LEAST today. Pour down; just end up in the freaking catchments.

Why am I feeling so lonely?

Amongst many others...

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Favorite Blogs?

What are yours? I have a select number that I read religiously - most days in fact. But, I want more. Any subject matter at all; I just want to find some more nice blogs to read.

What are your five favorite Blogs?

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Poking through the clouds...

This week has been an utter write off. I have been rather...ill? Nothing majorly serious, just some virus that kept me in bed for most of the week.

Yesterday was a beautiful day; and today hopes to bring more of it. Hopefully, we'll get a chance to clean up outside a little, play some footy and later even have a nanna nap. Then a roast dinner, lunches etc and get the house back to normal all ready for the week.

Dad thinks he might even come into work tomorrow. We all know he'll come in, sook about how things weren't always done *his* way, open the mail and then go home. But, he'll have thought himself 'well enough to come to work'. But he's improving - really improving.

Not much else going on around here; lots of thoughts running around my head and it's a little struggle at the minute to pin them down. It feels nicer that they are flowing around and not stopped and examined. I should do it more often!