Wednesday, 19 February 2014

Moving on

Hello everyone!

I've been gone a while.  Life has changed!  Things are better.  I have worked through my grief.  I know that I will always be sad over our losses, but I am no longer grieving.  I have learnt that there is a huge difference between those two words.  And I have even discovered, and been amazed at, feeling moments of complete happiness with my life.  Those of you who have gone through the same journey, will know what I mean by that.  You will know why it is such an amazing feeling, because it is one that for a very, very long time, I never thought I would feel again.

I've also come to realise that blogging for me is an avenue to work my way through the myriad of circumstances in life.  I've had numerous blogs over the last few years to help sort through various issues.  And, like other things in life, sometimes there comes a point when it is time to move on to the next adventure!

I'm a childless woman.  I will always be a childless woman.  But I'm no longer in a place where I need to be defined by that.  There will be times when I need to talk about it.  There are times when I still cry about it.  There are times when something happens that sends me back to the heartache of loss.  Being with people who understand what we've been through is so important.  But mostly, I am on to the new adventure.  There are other issues I need to work through in order to grow.  And there is my new life in which to flourish.

So, I've decided to move away from this blog and it's title and begin a new one.  I really hope that you will still come along for the ride.  There is a lot that has happened in the last few months.  A lot of things that have changed.  There is much to share!  I know I've been away for a while, but I have treasured the friendships I have found here and would love to still be a part of your blogging worlds.

I won't ever close down this blog.  If anyone out there can be helped, reassured, supported by the experiences that we went through, then that is an absolute blessing.  It is such a tough and life changing journey.  I don't wish it on anyone.  Even as I write this, I feel the tears well up for all the heartache and emotions and loss that have forever been imprinted on our souls.

It's time to to move on though.  I'm ready to find positivity and hope and peacefulness.  I'm ready to be happy in my life and to find joy in the day to day living!

That is what my new blog is about.  It's called Positively Peaceful.   It's a place to find, and to celebrate, all those things.  To look for them in times of happiness as well as times of difficulty.  It's a place to come to where I can talk about the good times and the struggles, whilst bringing a positively peaceful outlook onto everything.

I hope to see you there.

Positively Peaceful

Love and Light

Thursday, 12 December 2013

The Day itself

I said in my last post, that my due date itself wasn't so bad.  In fact, it was a good day because of some careful planning, my dear husband and some brilliant and talented winemakers! 

DH is in the wine industry and on our due date he had been invited to a bbq by one of his winemaker customers.  It was the perfect thing for us, on this difficult day, to be together and look forward to a social event.

I re-arranged my working hours and spent the day with him.  We travelled to the wine region and he spent the morning visiting customers while I tagged along.  By another amazing coincidence, my parents were holidaying in that region, so we met them for lunch.

I had the best ever gluten free pizza I have ever tasted in my life!!  DH has been wanting to take me there ever since he discovered it on another one of his trips.  It was the perfect choice for this day and it was lovely having lunch with my folks.

Then a couple more visits and we arrived at the bbq.  Oh my goodness!  It was an amazing wine tasting experience.  There were many winemakers there and each of them brought selections of their best red wines.  I have never been to a party where there were so many wine lovers all indulging in the pleasure of red wine.  Just looking around the party at everyone with their wine glasses gave me such a thrill.  What an experience!!

But the best experience was of course, the wine itself.  Of particular note, was a vertical tasting of the best red wine I have ever had.  It was from the winemaker who hosted the party and retails for $120 a bottle!!!  Wow!  A vertical tasting is when you taste different years of the same wine.  There were three years of this particular wine - an 05, 06 and an 09.  It is amazing.  You can really taste the difference in each year.  No two years are ever the same.  Yet all were brilliant!  In talking to him, it was all about the grapes that were used, the weather of the season and other factors.  It was just fascinating!  And I got just a little bit drunk!

It was a fun, relaxing and memorable day.  A perfect antidote for a difficult date.  And to spend the whole day with DH helped enormously.

I am glad the day has passed.  There is a sense of a new beginning, a shift in the grieving.  My time that I should have been pregnant is over and it is a little easier to move on.

Love and Light

Wednesday, 11 December 2013

The Due Date and coming to terms

For the last few weeks, I've needed a break from the childless world.  I've needed to find my own space again and to allow the grieving to run its course.  I stopped reading the books as well, just occasionally still working my way through Jodie Day's book "Rocking The Life Unexpected", but without doing the exercises.  I know I will go back through and do them at some point.

A lot has happened and it will take a few posts to catch up. 

The biggest thing was the coming and going of my due date. 

It was on December 3rd.  Exactly one week before my 45th birthday.

The day itself was, surprisingly, a good day, thanks to my husband and some careful planning.  It was the lead up to it that was horrible.  I think though, that all the grieving I had to about that day was done in the lead up.  By the time the day itself came around, I had already grieved.  And because the day was busy, it didn't creep into my mind too many times or for too long. 

I know there will always be grief about this in some way. 
I know that Dec 3rd will always be a date that will remind me.
I am still so sad.

The strange thing is the nature of the grief. 

When I get triggered by something, what I feel now is sadness more than grief.
But ever now and then, with no warning, grief will hit me like a ton of bricks and I am back in its depths once more.  There is never a reason or a trigger.  It is just like a big wave that comes and washes me back out.  And then, after a while, it goes again and I am back.

I don't understand it.  But I guess I don't have to.  I just have to keep working my way through it.

Yet amongst all of that, has been a sense of coming terms with my life as a childless woman.  I'm finding my life again.  New things are coming into it.  I have been busy again and finding enjoyment in new directions. 

My brother asked me to get the office side of his business in order.  It is a job that has been a long time coming and I am gradually bringing order to the chaos!  I have been really enjoying the process, not to mention getting paid again!

I've also been volunteering in the music office at school.  I am learning the ropes, enjoying the company, happy to be helping.  Fingers crossed it may lead to some paid work - maybe a day a week.  Even it doesn't though, it has been really good for me.  I am loving being a part of the music department in a new way, I have thrived in the office environment and volunteering has been good for my soul.  And interestingly, it has brought a different dimension to the teaching that I am still doing, because I am seeing the department as a whole, not just from the angle of an instrumental teacher.

While there is still so much that is so difficult, I am SO grateful to be seeing some positives creeping in!  And when I think about some of the timings of the things around me, I know that I am being looked after.

Love and Light.

Saturday, 16 November 2013

A dream coming to fruition

It's been a little while since I've been active on the blogosphere and communities for a number of reasons.  The best one is that I have been consumed with a new interest that has seen me turn a corner in my recovery!

For the last week I have been creating and then actively engaging in a home management binder.  I saw the idea a while ago and it peeked my interest.  Last week I acted on it.  Before I knew it, I was spending all my time creating daily, weekly, monthy etc cleaning lists, turning them into colorful and attractive word documents and acting on them in a frenzy of cleaning, clutter clearing, organising and labelling.

My scrapbooking materials came out as I created dividers and matching tabs and I began to feel a sense of truly beginning to live my life again after months of grief and years of fertility treatments.

One of the goals that I have had for this last half of the year was to find what it was that I wanted to do with my life.  This is the reason for taking time of work and giving myself space to not only grieve but to create the new life that I new that I needed. 

I began to realise that one of things that I really wanted, was to be at home creating a beautiful and natural home life for us.  We began with putting in raised garden beds and buying heritage seeds and seedlings.  And we are slowly looking at other natural options - a worm farm, better composting etc.  To do these things needs time and I know that I want my life to have room for this, along with time for babysitting and taking care of my parents.

This means not going back to work as I did before and not bringing in the same income.  I am so grateful that DH is happy for this to happen.  Neither of us are obsessed with money.  We both feel that as long as we have enough to live plus a bit extra to enjoy life, is all that we need. 

I can't tell you how excited I am at the prospect of not going back to the full time work of teaching that I have been doing for over 20 years.  To move away from that world is a relief.  It is a world that no longer serves me.  A world that doesn't fit who I am now.  I've felt that way for quite a while, but the last few years and particularly the last few months has seen me change in so many ways.  Finally, with the support of DH, I have broken away.

Creating the home management binder has been a HUGE step in achieving the goals that I do want.  It has taken me away from the stationery place of my grief and has seen me becoming passionate and active and finally achieving my goals of breathing life into our home.  The grieving is still there (big time today), but that is for another post.  This post is about the good things that are happening in my life.  The corner that I have turned!

As I talked to my therapist about all this, I realised that I just can't up with a name for the role that I am playing.  "Housewife" seems to have a negative, almost degrading feel to it.  "Homemaker" seems a bit corny to me.  What do I say to someone who asks what I am doing with my life?  Aside from the three days a week work that I have, one day teaching and two days doing officework, this is my role.  A role of maintaining our home, growing vegetables, being there for DH who is doing such long hours at the moment, being there for the rest of my immediate family and taking the much needed time to take care of myself.  Basically getting back to the roots of life, to what really matters.

I keep thinking back to the days before civilisation took hold, when people's lives were about the basics.  Obviously I wouldn't want to go back to that (!) but the simplicity of life appeals to me.  Spending time growing food, preparing food, using what the world gives us, ensuring that we live in a clean and uncluttered environment creating a freedom of mind, heart and soul.  Most importantly, taking care of ourselves and our loved ones.

The routine and structure of chores in the home management binder has brought that to my life.  Anything I think of goes down in the to do list, freeing my mind of worrying about it, and then getting ticked off when it is done.  I can easily see what needs to be done and when it needs to be done.  The house is fresher, less cluttered, cleaner and it is being reflected in my mind, body and soul.  I am feeling better.  Finally, I am out of my rut and bringing into my life what I have known I wanted to do for so long.

DH is away at the moment.  Three weeks in Italy for work.  It is really hard with him away and I haven't been coping well.  Yet, it has been the perfect time to begin this huge project.  And when he comes back at the end of next week, the place is going to feel SO much better.

I am so grateful for this coming into my life.  And I'd like to give a big thank you to all the women that have posted about their own home management binders and shared their ideas, their homes, and their visions!


PS.  I seriously would like an answer to what to call this life I am leading now!!!  Any thoughts?

Monday, 4 November 2013

Blessed silence.

I've decided that there is a reason why women are fertile in their 20's and early 30's.  It's because by the time you are in your mid 40's, looking after an infant is E.X.H.A.U.S.T.I.N.G.!!!

Yes, it was babysitting day today for my 18 month old great nephew.  The day started at 5.45 when my alarm went off so I would have time for a quick shower and some breakfast before he arrived at 6.15.  Then it was non-stop until 4 pm, aside from a blessed nap in the middle of the day. 

The kid doesn't stop.  He just goes from one thing to the next.  Outside, inside, play with this, play with that, come here, go there, up the steps, down the steps, whizzy's, chasey, chase the cat, where's the dog; food, food, finally lets sit and watch Cars 2, 15 minutes later thats enough, on to the next., and on it goes. 

I'm 44 and for the first time ever, feeling every year and then some.  It's certainly enough to cure my desire for a child!!  For today at least, the grief is on the back burner.  Whats that?  Silence?  Stillness in the house?  Aahhhhhhhhhhhh................

Time to go watch some Ellen.

Tuesday, 29 October 2013

Footsteps In The Sand

Depression is the word for the day.  Yet, I think it comes with a clarity of where I am right now.  And a sense of transitioning.

I saw my kinesiologist on Friday.  It was a good session.  After two sessions of not feeling that any progress was being made, I finally feel that maybe some breakthroughs have occurred. 

The first word that appeared in the session was "struggle".  I am struggling with so many things right now, not just being childless.  The difficult emotions of dealing with not having children, are severely triggering my coping mechanisms.  More than anything, I am struggling with those old and tired patterns of supporting myself, that do me as much harm and negativity in the long run, as they do protect me from my emotions of the moment.

I realised this morning, that I need to find others way of supporting myself.   And then I realised, that I don't have any other ways.  I can't do it myself.  I thought about my last exercise from the "Life Without Baby" group on Finding Support and came to the conclusion that there is no one in my life that can support me in the way that I need in order to release my negative patterns.

And then it occurred to me.  God can.  I'm reminded of the story of a person walking along the beach with God and looking back at their footsteps.  The person notices that in the most difficult parts of her life, there was only one set of footsteps.  "Why did you leave me in the most difficult times, God?"  "My child, those were the times when I was carrying you."

I'm not religious.  I was raised in the church, with my father as the minister.  By the time I reached my 20's, I began exploring all aspects of religion and spirituality and eventually found the things that worked for me, the beliefs to which I believe I was led.  It was wonderful having a father who supported me in my search and loved being able to provide me with greater clarity and revelation.  It didn't matter to him that I wasn't staying within the church.  What was important to him was that I was exploring God and discovering what that meant to me.  Dad's in depth understanding and education in matters of spirit and religion was a wonderful sounding board.  I don't place myself in any particular faith or philosophy now.  But if I had to define myself, it would be "spiritual". 

I'm wondering today whether I have ever let God carry me through the difficult times.  I'm wondering today, if through the difficult times, I always turned to my eating disorder to support me.  A completely dysfunctional pattern that may have been my only way of coping in my youth, but does not serve me anymore.

Today however, I have been feeling a sense of being carried.  Whatever healing went on in my kinesiology session has finally brought to a new place in my journey.  I don't feel it as one of letting go and handing over my problems to God.  I believe they are God given problems with which I need to work through in order to evolve.  But I do feel it as releasing the weight that drags me down and allowing God to lift me and carry me above my debilitating emotions.

Even as I wrote this, I felt some of the depression lift and a little bit of peacefulness creep in.

I am grateful.

Monday, 28 October 2013

Graduating to a new level

My period started last night.  I had 30 seconds of feeling very sad that I wasn't pregnant.  And then it was gone.  You see, I still dream of the miracle.

I have come to realise that I am beginning to lose the desire to have children, but the dream is still there.  I wrote this in the "Life Without Baby" community.

I still hold this fantasy that by an amazing miracle, I will get pregnant naturally and everything will be fine.  I think I may still live from month to month for a while.

I'm not going to be disappointed when AF comes around.  There has been too much loss for me to ever want to go through just a part of a pregnancy again.  And that is what would happen...

But it still exists as this little fantasy that everything is going to work out and we will get our dream and it will be good and life will be happy etc. etc.

The wonder of "what if" still remains each cycle.

Why am I feeling a change in my desire for children? 
I think that as I am grieving, I am partly healing and envisioning a new life, but I'm also finding reasons for why it is best for me to not have children.  Are those reasons excuses to help me feel better?  Maybe they are.  Probably a lot of them are.  I think they are a big part of my self-preservation thoughts.  "This is why it is best that I don't have children."  Yet the fact that they are there, shows that I still hold a big place in my heart and life that is meant to be filled with my children and I am needing to fill that hole with excuses in order to survive the heartache I feel. 
But maybe some of these reasons and understandings are also me finding my true path in my spiritual journey through life.  That is something to explore further.

The other thing I am feeling today, is a loss at never fully experiencing the natural bodily function of my reproductive system.  I will never know what it is like to feel my baby kicking inside of me, I will never feel my body swell as my child grows, I will never experience birth and breastfeeding etc etc.

As I sit here, I am so aware of my uterus shedding its lining to start afresh again.  I can feel the discomfort and the sensations of my reproductive system at work.  I feel connected to that core of my self.

At one time, my uterus held a growing child.  For 12 weeks, it did what it was meant to do.  Then it was gone.  Now as another cycle leaves me, I feel that loss again.  And I feel the loss of an important aspect of womenhood. 

My 'womenhood' is not something I have ever fully connected to.  It's always been a little elusive as I have dealt with the issues of my life.  In part, I saw having a child as a way of 'growing up', of 'becoming a woman'.  I felt that many of my problems would leave me as I enveloped the role of motherhood, as I shed my 'childhood'.  Maybe that was just a fantasy, it probably was, but it was real for me. 

Now that there isn't a child to help me 'graduate' to the next stage of my life, I have to find that new level myself.  I have to find my 'womenhood' in another way.

This is going to be an interesting journey!