Friday, 27 January 2017

When your child hurts

As far as I am aware most parents hurt when their child hurts. I say most because of the reports that appear in the media about child abuse in homes and child maiming or death instances where parents are found to be negligent or worse guilty of abhorrent treatment of their children. So, I repeat, MOST parents hurt when their child hurts. Whether it is with a common flu or 'minor' ailment to severe health issues which might mean heavy and drastic treatments.

But not only when your child is ill do you 'feel' their pain. Problems at school, relationship upsets, job struggles, personal struggles to name a few instances when I as a mum can truthfully say, " I hurt right along side you." If possible there are moments when you want to take their pain away to ease stress, sadness and in some instances - despair. I know, it is called life, lessons learned, their own walk. I know... it is just, well I just don't want them to have any kind of hurt!

(This blog is written from a MUM'S perspective. I realise dads feel things too - only I cannot describe those emotions because I am a MUM. So don't feel left out dads. I understand you too feel the pain- your way.)

When I was 13 my mum gave birth to my baby brother. Although a healthy looking baby, pretty hefty health issues were discovered. I recall my mum praying that she would rather loose the use of her legs in order that her baby would walk. He had spina bifida with a twist, and kyphosis of the spine. It turned our family's world upside down.

I am proud and pleased to mention my brother is a dad of 3 and just recently celebrated his 50th birthday. A miracle child in more ways than one. Mum mum did keep the use of her legs - with 5 hip operations and 2 knee surgeries. But hey, maybe she would have had to have those anyway! Who knows.

Being a MUM of 3, I too have had my shared sad moments when ills and unhappiness entered the lives of my children. Being an oma I now feel unsettled and connected with my grandchildren when they have their moments. A few years ago the intense disbelief and grief at the death of my step grandson, that pain lingers even still. Recently one had a ski accident, thankfully no lasting effects, there have been all sorts of health issues per child as per usual. The various levels of distress at times do creep up on me. NO, I am not a sad, forlorn, depressed person in any way or form. I think it is a natural healthy and emotional connection I experience with my children and grandchildren.

I 'feel' the happy moments too. My internal system detects up and downs - without even trying. I call it a blessing.

And now, for the BIG STUFF. What happens when you hear that your adult child is ill. Someone who has an independent life, family and friends. Does that pain then no longer affect you? Well, let me tell you, it still hurts. And for your child you want to be strong, encouraging, understanding, a rock, the shelter to run to. You want to have the wisdom, energy, the courage to be there hiding your own fears sadness and concerns. And as a mum you too need time to let the dust settle, come to terms with and get a grip on .... !

I received a long and detailed account of someone's daughter going through more than a wee rough health patch. More like a jungle. Not only does the patient have to digest all the information and let it all 'land' but those around close to her are also affected. And the ripple spreads.

In this big pond of loving and caring people, of which I am privileged to be one, we all want to swim with her. Our arms are there to catch her when she fears she will fall. But not only the patient - the MOTHER too will also need a floaty - an air cushion of love to ease the pain she feels - because HER CHILD HURTS.

Right this minute, and I know it will ease, I too hurt. For the mums with pain, because 


Tuesday, 24 January 2017

Whichever way you look....

Whichever way one looks at life will determine one's demeanor. If you had a good night's sleep and wake up refreshed - one can tackle anything that comes on one's path. Have you tossed and turned, gone to bed too late and the alarm went off before you were rested, then every little task can seem a chore.

From experience I have found that the way I look at a task or up and coming event is telling for my success or failure to enjoy.

Take cooking for a group. I LOVE cooking, I love being amongst friends and I get pure JOY from deciding on a menu, the challenges of new recipes and the final moment when te meal hits the table. So whether I have slept badly or not - the JOY of COOKING will ensure that I have a successful and enjoyable day. Someone asked " what can I wake you up for in the middle of the night?" and I replied - "as long as you are hungry I will cook something for you!"

On the other hand - my administration. You know, keeping the files up to date, accounts files and all sorts of documents stored etc. Whereas many moons ago I loved 'playing office' and was quite sharp in that area - I now loathe the task and unfortunately, that means I let things slide. I am careless with some documents, I stash stuff in a box and think- yeah yeah- later! I have lost the 'FUN' feeling this task held for me.

It is that time of year again- tax time is looming. Even though I am also dependent on outside forces to send the annual records which I need to complete my tax return, I could, should and have to get my own 'house' sorted and up to date. I keep procrastinating. Which only makes the task less appealing.

So this morning I decided to challenge myself into turning my thoughts around on this matter. A new approach to things to avoid. On attempting to look at this task differently to entice me to embark on my 'adventure' in ADMINLAND!

I am going to purchase some new colourful binders, a new note book and set up a time table in which to have chores done by so that a whole year of administration is broken down into smaller tasks. I will be posting times into my diary so I keep those days during the year free to update my administration. It then should only take 30-60 minutes a time. Now I know I will be active all week to get things completed to my satisfaction.

I know for a fact this will work for me as I applied it to some other 'nasties' on my to do list. And I have to say - I have less and less things I avoid doing. Breaking larger tasks down into small jobs does make things easier to handle ( for me).

So today - I am going to change my view of ADMINISTRATION TASKS and embrace them instead of avoid them.

Well, that is step one. My dairy appointments with myself are done. The old binders are on my desk and I will start 'unfiling' them today- keeping what's relevant. The newly purchased will be filled tomorrow. The box which holds a 'horror' moment- will be tackled later this week. And by the end of the month I should be all sorted. A first so soon into the New Year for me.

Thursday, 19 January 2017

The clock is ticking.....

Tick tock tick tock- goes the clock. I don't know if you notice or experience it as I do, but somehow the days seem to dissolve into nothingness at a speed of knots that is making me nervous.

I seem to be ticking off my days on the calendar faster than I have ever done. I wake up Monday morning and before I can complete my set tasks it is Friday afternoon.

And it isn't just me. All around me I hear the same comments.

Is that a real reflection of what is ging on? Is the world spinning faster, are our days losing time? Hardly seems possible. Yet, for some things, time is running out. For certain species animals in our wonderful and colourful world of nature- things aren't looking too cheerful. Ice caps and glaciers are losing ground ( or in their instance - ice). Flocks of birds are shifting their breeding grounds, tree types are threatened as are habitats and small indigenous peoples are being forced into unfriendly and alien territories.

I recently saw this posting of The Free World Charter and it instantly reminded me of a book I used to read to my children and later my students at school. My grandchildren have also got a copy of this book- which I feel ought to be in all homes and lessons taken from it put into practice.

And the book is called: The LORAX by Dr Seuss. Dr Seuss wasn't so silly after all when he wrote this book which was published in 1971. I guess people didn't take it seriously because it was ' a children's book!' What may also have played a role was that the damage brought to light in the book- wasn't as evident then as it is now. The thought- we have TIME to fix this, also played  apart I feel.

BUT people, the rate things are going - TIME isn't our friend anymore as far as this subject is concerned. We NEED to wake up- NOW!! And YES, YOU CAN make a difference. All little bits help.

Maybe I am speaking to the converted and my readers already recycle, grow their own vegetables, ride bikes when possible instead of taking cars. Maybe you do already contribute by having solar panels and eat meat only once a week- or not at all. So, well done for that. And thank you. BUT there is MORE.

We need to not preach - but encourage others to join us.

Invite acquaintances over for dinner and cook and serve fresh produce- so they can taste the difference.

Do stop and pick up that discarded tin can, food wrapper, Mc-ers meal box, which hasn't landed in the rubbish bin where it belonged - but missed the  mark. Help it find it's way there.

Sort your refuse- plastic, metals, paper, food scraps and 'ordinary' waste.

Avoid the 'cheap clothing' stores. Better to have a 'environmentally and employment friendly fabricated clothing article which lasts then 6 cheaper unfriendly versions.

Educate your (grand) children - especially by example. If you pick up the chippie wrapper and bin it while at the park or on a walk, and they see you do this, they will learn some valuable lessons like:

1. Keep our parks, paths, cities clean- it starts with you
2. Don't litter.
3. Every effort no matter how small- helps.

As far as  projects that are about saving the whale, or whatever- support the initiatives, give credit where credit is due and select appropriate materials when purchasing home products.

Small things but they all help fill the bucket.

Anyway, enough of my ranting and raving. It all came about the memory of reading Dr Seuss great book- The Lorax. If you haven't read it- time you did! Think it out to be more widely read and promoted.

Thursday, 12 January 2017

Changes can, generally speaking, be unsettling

The saying, " a change is as good as a rest" isn't always as restful as one might imagine.

We human beings are creatures of habit, of rituals and routines. We like to know what the day or event has in store for us. At least have some indication of what we might expect. And of late,  that isn't always as clear as we would like it to be.

Take changing jobs for instance, shifting house, country or lifestyle. In this changing world where most things have become unpredictable as far as long term is concerned. Where marriages hardly last the distance, where gold watched are no longer handed out after 25 years of faithful service, where shops come and go, there isn't much that holds promise for longevity - except for us humans. We live longer in a more unstable world.

Events world wide are splashed on screens and in newspapers and reach our ears sometimes before the storm has died down, dust has settled or embers are smoldering. And before the news is old and cold- a new disaster reaches our ears and eyes. And I haven't even mentioned political unrest and abhorrent offences against human beings.

My last blog was about TRUST- the trust we have lost in so many instances. In people close to us, in friendships, in promises, in politicians, in those who have been elected to guide and protect us.

What I would like to see happen, is that we ourselves become that reliable factor in the lives of those around us and in our own lives. That stability and the comfort and security that it brings those around us, also ourselves, helps restore some of this unrest in us as a people. That we know that we can count on ME, YOU and the OTHER PERSON.

Somewhere, some how we have become restless, insecure and indecisive. It has become harder to hold onto a decision we have made - we dither in uncertainty. This reflects in all we do. Our 'leading examples' our ' heroes' from yesteryear have vanished or at best have become invisible or unreliable to many.

Time to turn the tide. I am an Optimistic Realist/ Realistic optimist. I believe people CAN bring about the right sort of change of which we all can benefit.

I believe we are more resiliant than we believe ourselves to be.

It is January 2017. Let's make it a TOGETHER and TRUSTWORTHY year! Let's fulfill promises, offer assistance to those needing our support and reach out from within.