Sunday, May 13, 2007


At least I don't HAVE to do anything today

Which is about all I will claim out of mother's day today. I am resolutely not a big fan of commercially-driven celebratory days and tokenism, so I have no reason to expect anything of note today. That said, I still wear, all the time, the 'Mum' pendant the girls managed to purchase through convoluted secret means and surprise me with last year. I never take it off - in fact it is the only piece of jewellery I usually wear. (Even my wedding band annoys me when the weather is warm and my fingers swell, so I take it off a lot these days... not really very feminine am I?)

This morning we had nowhere we had to be, thank heavens, so after a 5.15am start to go bike riding yesterday, I was looking forward to it, and with no guilt whatsoever, heck - I'll still milk something out of "Mother's Day" if I can! 9am was a nicely decadent sleep-in, and having woken, we were just starting to enjoy a nice snuggle when the two youngest appeared ((dammit!)) sheepishly at the side of the bed, presenting me with some trinkets they had made this morning with beads and scoobies, and presented in a paper box they had made, decorated with pretty gold stickers with the letters spelling MUM, and stars. Moreso than the usefulness of each piece, it was sweet that they worked together on a token of their affection. Zoe also wanted to make me a cup of coffee, but by the time I got downstairs to have breakfast, the zeal had faded, and they were on the computers. *le sigh* Maybe they will do 'something' later in the day.. but I won't hold my breath.

Back to situation normal. The eldest rose sometime after 10.00.. and has barely uttered a word. I'm not game to talk to her about anything today, lest it be taken as criticism, chewed up and spat back at me in rage or indignation. For example, how I might expect her to do the odd thing around the house, as according to her, she has to do everything, and the other two get off scot-free. (Yes, I am like that, apparently. I've made her the slave, and the others the princesses who do nothing, ever! Like, yesterday she already hung about 12 items of clothes on the line, AND did Zoe's hair. So, my God, how dare I ask her to chop some veggies for dinner! )

I've done washing, because the weather plus commitments prevented it the last few days. That was ok, as chucking stuff in the washing machine and hanging it out is one of the few domestic chores I don't mind doing. But now I have a line full of wet washing, as the weather waited till I optimistically hung out the second load, before letting forth with the rain. Looks as if at some point today I will have to rescue it all, spin it again, and then cycle it all through the cabinet dryer.

We were going to go bike riding, but the rain looks to have stymied those plans. While complaining about any rain is now heresy in Australia, we've really had a reasonable amount where we are, so I really do wish I could send it inland where they need it, and so that I could have had some time out today riding. I would have really enjoyed that for mother's day, moreso than any gifts or token pretence at helping with domestic chores.

We christened our new bikes yesterday morning in the community ride.. and I am a little despondent - not because I had trouble riding it as such, but because I was a lot slower than the group we set off with - one we are usually too fast for with the tandem. Once you fall off the back, you then struggle to keep up. Marc kept slowing to wait for me, and I could see he was struggling to keep his frustration in check. No wonder he chooses to ride a tandem with me - I can't get left behind, and he can ride as fast as he likes. So I am feeling like 'the weakest link'.. and I could only use the excuse of 'um, new bike, never ridden a road bike before, hence confidence in handling it affected my ability to go as fast as everyone else'. I really enjoyed the social coffee time afterwards, though, and really didn't want to leave to head back home for a few hours of standing around serving in the netball canteen and clubhouse. We only chalked up 30km - which doesn't seem much to us these days after riding 80+ on the tandem some mornings - but I had to drop Marc off to a Touch tournament in town, and realistically, for a couple of months now, we are going to be pushing it for pre-dawn light and riding down the highway. And I rode hard, trying to catch up the whole way, so maybe I worked as hard!

At swimming on Friday night the warm up with the fins hurt my left ankle a bit, and while it was ok on the bike, by last night the back of my ankle was hurting (not helped by so much standing around the rest of the day) - so that I couldn't walk down stairs properly, and the achilles tendon area was sort of throbbing even when I just sat on the lounge. I abandoned the Swans in the last quarter when I decided they weren't playing well enough to overcome a 25 point deficit in the last 15 minutes, and hobbled off to bed. Out like a light - didn't hear another thing, like the More Dedicated Supporter joining me at whatever time he did. There's something to be said for these stupid early mornings - I don't have as much trouble dropping off at night! (And I can walk downstairs today!)

Marc has a lot of little jobs to keep him occupied all day. Including patching a bike tube - realised when we got home last night that my new bike had a flat!! Doh! Bit of a bummer to achieve that on its first outing. And charging up a car battery. Yesterday after the ride, and to save time, I left my bike in the Commodore, and rallied the kids into the 4WD to race out to netball. (Have avoided using it lately because of the petrol consumption... hmmm...) *Tick, tick, tick* Battery was flat as a tack. "Jump out everyone, we'll have to take the Commodore (and hope we don't run out of petrol in that)"

As I'm dragging my bike out, I hear cries of anguish - Zoe has shut her own hand in the door of the Cruiser...! Great mothering - "Here's an icepack, bung it on your hand and, quick, let's go. We're running late!" (Thankfully, it was ok, but there wasn't much time for any TLC.)

At netball, Ali got a couple of nail gouges courtesy of an over-zealous opponent who obviously got past the nail check. (Plus an elbow to the head, and a jarred finger ) The one to the palm of her hand took a bit of a chunk out, and the poor kid had copped one thing too many, dissolving into tears at the end of the game (and again come shower time.) Lucky kids can bounce back fairly resiliently.. but one of the best mother's day weekend gifts I could have was having the Daddy back here and home for the weekend. Sometimes it's just the little things - he could play Dr Dad ("Step into my surgery and we'll deal with this hand") while I got dinner happening, and to be frank, he is the better 'physician'. (He does the practical stuff, and I deliver the emotional care.)

So back to today. 2pm and we haven't done anything about lunch. Marc is tinkering with bikes. I've talked to his mother on the phone. The younger two are pottering around upstairs - Ali has just come down to show me a design she's done, incorporating all her friends' names into it. It looks cool. I suggest she puts it in a frame. Eldest chips in with a narky "Copy cat", pleasant sibling that she is (not), because some aspects of it look vaguely like a design she has done. Once.

Does anyone have a single cone of silence they could lend me so that every now and then I could lower it just over her? So that I, on the outside, could not hear HER being loud and unreasonable. Look, even one just for today might be a good thing, because we seem to be going through a 'phase' here which I am not coping with very well.

Today, She, as I mentioned earlier, is possibly still stewing from my audacity in making her cut up vegetables for dinner last night - as I figured she obviously needed some practice. Friday night as I left for swimming the one thing I asked her to do was 'Could you prepare the vegetables for dinner.' She said 'which ones?', and I said 'look, any - go through the drawer in the fridge - there's a few in there - and choose some, and chop them up.' I figured that at two weeks off 14 years old, she could manage that by now - I know that the 11 year old could have and would have. Oh? But no. Too hard? No initiative to decide? To even try? It's not like I came home and found not enough prepared. She didn't even TRY. It's as if she's never chopped vegies before in her life, and while I have never been one of these 'cook with your children from when they are 6 months old type awesomely patient Mums' the girls have had a hand in doing stuff in the kitchen. The truth is, she didn't want to (get off the computer), and 'how very dare' *I expect her to be able to make a choice, or know how to head and tail beans or snow peas. [In my head I am imagining 'how very dare you!' in the same tone that the Catherine Tate's character Derek uses, even though it has no other relevance to the situation other than the hyperbole of the skit matches the exaggeration and ridiculousness of her indignance!]

If I am lucky, we might just get through Mother's Day without a scene. Which, in the end, is all I would really like from the day. I was able, just now, to signal to #2 to 'just walk away' (as we have discussed is probably the best way to deal with the irrationality of the stroppy older teenage sister). At least I am getting through somewhere while I am failing miserable somewhere else.

Dammit, I wish I could get out and ride my bike!


Happy Mothers Day to you. The Cone of Silence sounds like a magnificent idea. I want one.

I'm glad Marc was home :o)
Oh I hope the teenager did not dampen your Mothers Day... I remember 13/14 - it was a horrible century!

Give yourself kudos for the 30k bike ride - I hadn't been on a bike for a week and did 2 very short rides (accompanied by 7yo) and man, my legs were jellied!
Thank you, thank you for being honest about the hand-in-the-Cruiser thing! I always wonder if I'm causing Psychological Trauma if I just don't have time for TLC.
Mine are still young enough to give kisses on Mom's Day, and they did, so maybe no lasting trauma yet....
Judging how bad an injury is is always a tough one. You have to gauge the intensity of the cry - even at age 8!! I figured ice and the 10 min car trip would sort her out, and if it was still bad when we got there I'd deal with it then!!! Whoever decided ice was a good treatment was onto a good thing psychologically, on top of any physiological advantages!

My youngest is a cuddlebug, and even if she gets some tough love at times, she knows there's always a kiss and a cuddle waiting.... Sometimes both her Dad and I can feel a bit like the cat that Pepé Le Pew is always trying to kiss because she gets on your lap, and then just plants dozens of kisses all over your face.

Had the two of them in bed on Sunday morning. My eldest has never been a snuggler, but in between the times when we are cranky with each other, we do manage the occasional hug. It's very disconcerting when they are just about as tall as you now! I would just never expect it of her on Mother's Day. She is far too wise to let me get away with being a hypocrite - on the one hand claiming I don't go in for Mother's day, and then on the other, expecting to be showered with gifts and affection just on the day.

Post a Comment

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?