Don’t Wait!

Four years ago, I got a phone call in the afternoon, after a completely normal, even pleasant day.
I was told that my six year old nephew, with whom I had a deep bond, had been killed in a car accident.
I didn’t stop crying for days. It still seems surreal. It still seems too incredible that I will never again hear his voice or talk to him.
I know that a part of the reason I still feel his loss and his absence so keenly, is because I allowed the anger and bitterness I feel towards his guardians to prevent me from at least talking to him on a regular basis. I regret it. I wish I could change it. I wish I could honour his memory and his nature with love and forgiveness.

In the preparation for his memorial service, we were looking for pictures of him through the many we had. Pictures of him with his father, him with his cousins, him with us, and I found lots of wonderful pictures of him with my knucklehead, and even a few with him and I together. I wished there were more. Those pictures are my treasures.

I realised with a start, during that exercise, that I had maybe a handful of pictures of my knucklehead and I together, and he was already a grown up! I had mostly been behind the camera while he was growing up, taking the pictures, but as is typical of many women – I had avoided the camera because I was too fat, had no make up on, was taking the picture… Whatever. And now it was too late to take those pictures.
I wish I had taken those pictures, or had someone take pictures of me with my boy. Pictures with bot of our faces in them.
Now I take a selfie with my son, or I hand my phone-slash-camera to someone else, every time I see him. I love these pictures.

BeFunky Collage

I also take selfies with my family when I see them – my mom and dad, my sisters, my gran… To me the pictures are very special. I know not everyone sees photos as all that important, preferring to make memories rather than take pictures, but my pictures are a part of my memories and I look at them often.

I never part company with my son, or my husband, or my parents and siblings, without telling them I love them. I never want to feel the heartache I feel now because I didn’t talk to them enough.

Don’t wait to take pictures of you and your children together. Selfies are fun. Play silly buggers in a photobooth. Celebrate special occasions. Don’t wait till you’ve done your hair or you’re better dressed.

You can’t go back.

My Baby Boy Turns 25 Today!

Today, my baby boy celebrates his twenty fifth birthday.

When I realised just how grown up you are, I literally stopped dead in my tracks. Its actually had me tearing up thinking about it! How silly is that! 😀
You changed the world as soon as you entered in, and you made sure to keep changing it. Time flies so fast, and you have grown up to be an amazing young man, but you will always be my baby.

I wish I was more eloquent a writer, so I could do a blog post here that does you justice, so I could share with people just how hard you’ve worked and how you are well set on a fantastic career in something you are passionate about. How wonderful you are with your cousins – all younger than you. How you love spending time with your family.

We are so very proud of you. Enjoy your day, my knucklehead. Stay as sweet as you are!

My Knucklehead, The Professional

Yesterday I could have burst with pride, and thinking about it makes me so happy I could cry!

I watched as my boy calmly and confidently led a group of people through a “discover scuba” experience. The one young woman had a one-on-one session and even though she is physically disabled and wheelchair-bound, she said she felt completely secure with him and had an amazing time under the water.

Sigh… Still can’t get over how grown up and mature he is…

Is There Such A Thing As Mommy Limbo…?

I read quite a few mommy blogs.
I have many friends who have young children, and they blog frequently about being a mom to those children.
I belong to a mommy bloggers Facebook group.
I am a mom.
But I’m a mom to a grownup who doesn’t live here anymore, and most of my blogging is now about my dogs

There’s no more school run, homework drama, PTA meetings, parents evenings, or doctor’s visits.
There’s no more OT, fundraisers, play dates, speech therapy, or fighting with teachers over my son’s ADHD.
There’s no more arguments with him over taking his meds, us fighting over everything, or panic when the phone rings (well… almost).
His school life and growing up was hard. His ADHD diagnosis complicated his school life, his home life, his friendships, our family life… Beyond comprehension for people who don’t live with it. Everything was hard work.

And now I feel like my mommy duties have been suspended.

My son is doing really well at the moment.
He’s matured so much in the last 18 months, and he’s worked his backside off – on his own – working and studying! He’s doing an internship where he’s getting an internationally recognised qualification and he’s learning the business around it. It’s really hard work, and the final leg he’s in now has him stressed, but he’s doing it. On his own.
We pay his rent, we buy his groceries and we’re paying for his courses, but unlike the school fees I felt like I was wasting, he’s actually thriving and he wants to do this and do it well.

I only see him a couple of times a month, when I insist on getting a #mamalove selfie to try and make up for how few photos I have of the two of us together, and he doesn’t need me right now.

He needs groceries, but he doesn’t need me to take on belligerent teachers who refused to accept that he had a special needs diagnosis and required extra attention and was allowed extra time during tests and exams.

He needs cigarette money, but he doesn’t need me to take on the bullies who loved to pick on him because he gave them the kind of reactions that feed a bully’s ego.

He needs electricity money, but he doesn’t need me to drive him to endless doctor’s appointments for prescriptions and therapies, that sometimes made me feel like I was stabbing myself in the eye.

He needs us to pay for his trips, but he doesn’t need me to help him with his homework and stock up on stationery.

He’ll probably come back and live at home once he’s finished his internship, while he looks for work and a place to stay, and we’ll probably fight like cat and dog while he’s here, but I will never again be a mom to a little boy who needed me for everything…

Edited to add:

Make no mistake, I am a very happy mom.
I have time to indulge in my hobbies and learn new things. I have learned how to crochet, I have a few grown-up colouring in books. I can be a full time wife to my darling husband. I can work with my dogs.
And I love seeing my boy! We have actual WhatsApp conversations! I miss him like mad, and I am so proud of him.

Odontophobia, The Fear of Dentistry

I am a sufferer.

Its ridiculous because I can’t actually pinpoint a particular dentist appointment in my life where I was hurt by the dentist. I was about 10 when I got my first filling, and I remember the assistant wiping my tears out of my ears but I don’t remember actual pain… and as I’ve gotten older its gotten worse.

This afternoon my knucklehead had an appointment ‘coz his wisdom teeth are really bugging him, and as I have a few small problems with my teeth – nothing painful yet – I decided to book an appointment too.
I called the dentist last week to arrange a Dormicum scrip because just phoning to make myself an appointment gives me butterflies, and they called me back saying the Dentist wanted to see me first to see what needed to be done before he’d write a scrip. It took several phone calls to explain that I couldn’t even sit in the chair without the meds, no matter what needed doing, so he wrote me a scrip.
The chemist didn’t have the 15mg tablet I was prescribed and gave me two 7,5mg tablets instead, which I didn’t think would be a problem and I took them 50 minutes before my appointment.
But once my knucklehead was finished – having a wisdom tooth pulled IN THE CHAIR no less – the dentist told me to take a seat, and I was still wide awake… and I burst into tears.

My poor knucklehead has never seen that because I tried not to be in the chair if he had an appointment – and he has no problem with the dentist! When he was younger I would still be checking our details in reception and he would have slipped off down the passage and be sitting in the chair chatting to the dentist when I got there.
And I only found out about Dormicum when he was already 17 years old! I couldn’t believe no dentist had ever mentioned it before.
Needless to say there’s no twice-a-year check up for me.

My boy was so sweet. He put his arm around me and encouraged me to get in the chair so the dentist could just have a look, and he came and sat next to me and held my hand, trying to reassure me as I literally bawled and tried to push my body backwards through the chair.

The dentist was really nice too, trying to reassure me that he wasn’t going to hurt me, but even as he just had a look with the little round mirror and took X-rays I cried, gripping the arm of the chair and my son’s hand till my arms were white to the elbow.
He tried to ask if it was the needle I was afraid of and I spluttered that it was all of it. Then he said there was one small cavity he could fix without giving me a shot as it was only on the surface, and asked if he could try. I could barely acknowledge anything and as he started the drill he barely touched it to my tooth before I was sobbing and he just couldn’t work like that.
Then my darling Glugster arrived and immediately saw that the meds hadn’t worked like they should, and he held the hand my son wasn’t holding.
We tried to wait a bit to see if the meds would kick in but nothing changed and after a few minutes I left, I’ll make a new appointment when the tooth starts hurting me. 😛

Normally, when the Dormicum works like it should, I fall asleep in reception 20 minutes before my appointment and have to be guided into the chair. Apparently I talk a lot of nonsense and the dentist has to repeatedly tell me to open my mouth, but I’m not there and I remember nothing afterwards. Obviously I have to be driven to the dentist and then home again, and I sleep for several hours afterwards, but it doesn’t take me days to recover from the physical tension I experience without the meds!

I apologised to the dentist, who I am sure has seen this kind of behaviour before, and my Glugster drove us home. As Murphy would have it I fell asleep 5 minutes before we got home and slept for a couple of hours, but I remember the appointment in its entirety.
The dentist suggested we hire a type of anesthetist next time rather than using Dormicum, but that will be pricey as we have to pay the specialist up front and claim it back from the medical aid, so I think I’ll probably go with the Dormicum again when I have to go back – I’ll just make sure I get the 15mg tablet.
Thankfully I’m not stiff and achey this time since the poor dentist didn’t actually do anything.

How are you with dentist visits? Do you need to be medicated first?