Thursday, June 21, 2007

March of the Pink Elephants

Nothing much to report, appart from the fact that I'm doing horribly not well at all, really bad actually.

Yeah so, after the last post about how I was getting better, I decided to take the happy pills. Waiting to hear back from the health visitor now, so I'll keep you posted (or you'll be able to guess what happened when I start blogging about pink elephants in the house -PEACE MAN)

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ETA: Symptoms of postpartum depression may include but are not limited to:

Feeling hopeless, worthless or inadequate (Yup)
Frequent crying or tearfulness (ditto)
Insomnia or sleepiness (well, I am sleepy after Matilda woke me up at freaking 6:45, does that count?)
Lack of energy (Have you been having sneaky looks at my house?)
Loss of pleasure in activities you normally enjoy (Like living, you mean?)
Difficulty doing typical daily chores (Yes, tick that one too.)
Loss of appetite (Mwahahaha, I wish. That'd be enough to make me postpone treatment for a few months.)
Feelings of sadness and despair (Yes.)
Feelings of guilt, panic or confusion (Yes.)
Feelings of anger or anxiety (I said yes already! This is getting old!)
Extreme mood swings (Yes yes YES)
Memory loss (Have always had that... As far as I remember. Heheh.)
Overconcern for baby (Nah.)
Fear of “losing control” (Oh yes. Big time.)
Lack of interest in sex (No comment. Children might read this.)
Worrying that you may hurt your baby (No)
A desire to escape from your baby or your family (Yes, on occasion.)
Withdrawal from social circles and routines (Feeling VERY tempted, trying not to.)
Thoughts about hurting yourself (Ahahaha. Well, it's always been nice thinking about it. Not that I'd do it -too chicken.)

Woke up today at the civilised time of 6:45 by Matilda screaming "BREAD! BREAD! BREAD!" (She woke up with an appetite, bless her...NOT.) By the time I'd grabbed her and dragged her downstairs, she had woken up Philip too, so the screaming was in Dolby Surround Stereo. I resisted (with difficulty) the urge to stuff a whole loaf of bread down her gob to see if she'll choke, and started the dance of changing nappies/feeding/not killing the babies.

Now she's been plonked in front of CBeebies again, as this is about the only activity that I can bring myself to do with her.

Look what she did yesterday:

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She drew this, which is not that impressive in its self, but she insisted it was a picture of mummy. "One mummy here, and one mummy there." QED, my child IS sweet and adorable, and I'm horrible for wanting to choke her when she screams at me.

Matilda talking on the phone:

Philip being ticklish:

Plus she has now learned all the songs from CBeebies credits and sings them when we're out and about, making sure EVERYONE knows my child watches too much TV and I'm a useless parent.

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I am also tempted to complain that Marilena never calls me, messages me or in any other way seeks my company (appart from when she wants me to do something for her,) but she doesn't read the blog anyway, so why bother.

And I want to complain that I don't have any friends. But if I do that, a) I'll sound pathetic (which I am anyway, Proudly Pathetic since 1979 TM) and b) all sorts of people who are not my friends but are friendly-type aquaintances are going to come out and say that THEY are my friend, just because they want to make me feel better, when in fact they know they're not really my friend. I wonder what they'd say if I started calling them to cry at them because I burned the food. In the middle of the night. Thought so. Or c) worse, no one will say THEY'RE my friend.

(Matilda's friend, Atticus)
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But it doesn't matter anyway, because soon I'll be taking the happy pills, and the Pink Elephants will be my friends. And if I'm lucky, they'll carry me away, and no one will ever see me again.


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And Peter

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Friday, June 08, 2007

Corrosive Parenting

Yesterday we were walking home, and a mother with two little girls was walking in front of us. The girls might have been 6 and 3 years old, or thereabouts; they were holding hands.

"Let the lady pass, she's walking faster than us, you're too slow," said the mum.
"Yes, but they're so sweet, holding hands like that," I commented.
"Oh, that's just because she runs off if someone isn't holding her," she said dismissively pointing to the 3 year old.

Then the girls started cooing over Philip in his wrap.

"Hard work, isn't it?" (This HAS to be a tie with "is it time for his feed" as the most hated phrase in mothering. Yes, I agree, I don't get to lie in bed and watch television all day long anymore. AND?)
"Well, yes, but it's nice; I like it."
"Oh, do you? Not me. I wouldn't have any more."
"I will. I'm not done yet."
"Aren't you? I am. These two have convinced me I don't want any more," pointing to the girls. Then they walked off.

WHY do people do this? WHY? WHY? I hear comments like that almost on a daily basis.

"They're so nice at that age. Just wait until they are (4-5-6-*insert approximate age of child standing next to the person making the comment*) then they become horrible."

"Oh, little Jackie here? He's 9 going-on-29. Eheheheh."

I had a mother actually tell me (while she was holding her baby girl and her little boy, who has just started school, was standing next to her,) "I like boys until they start school. Then they change."

This sort of casual, unprovoked put-down always makes me cringe. To me, it's worse than spanking, worse than swearing at them when you get angry. I think that a normal child can actually recognise acts made in anger, as long as he also receives a comparable amound of affection when his parents are not angry. "When is do this, it makes mummy angry. When I am angry, I stomp my feet. When mummy is angry, she calls me a ****** ****** or she gives me a swat on the bum" is not an ideal situation, but at least there is a cause-and-effect element to it. What does this sort of behaviour tell a child? "I am so insignificant that my mum will talk to strangers about me like I'm not there." "I am such an inconvenience that my mum will complain about me even when I haven't been doing anything wrong." "I am so unpleasant to have around that I have proven to my mum she wouldn't want any more like me." "There is no point in NOT being naughty, they complain about me anyway."

Don't get me wrong, I DON'T condone spanking or swearing at children. I very much aspire never to spank my kids. Notice, I said aspire. I try never to say never.

But I promise, I will never, ever, EVER treat my children like insignificant pests when talking to other people.

Check this out, I learned how to put videos online! (your reward for reading through my rant -unless you are Marilena or Andreas -SHAME ON YOU!)

Matilda decided walking is too much effort:

Philip Live, Unplugged:

And Matilda, having her morning cuppa:

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More than Good Enough News

Good Enough Mum is pregnant!

I envy the people who get to have an Attachment Parenting friendly (the spirit, not the pedantic detail of AP; i.e. "follow your baby's cues, with respect") Terry Pratchett fan for their GP. Plus she writes damn good blogs, and she always kindly answers my medical questions about Matilda when I pester her with emails.

I have this secret hope that I might get to meet her some day, especially since she's actually in the same country as me (now we get to see if she still reads this blog -hnnnngh hnnngh hnnnngh!) Maybe if I can convince Pete we need to go to a Discworld Convention....