Finding roots again

Hey! It’s been a while. And things things look quite different around here no? Well, it’s been an impulsive revamp. I have been in a bit of a funk lately, feeling a bit out of control and unmoored; thus the impetuous changes in other, trivial aspects my life (hair, blog, screensaver, laundry detergent, tea bag, loofah….you get the drift).

The genesis of this virtual space is rooted in the singular loneliness of a new parent, especially a mother (sorry, I cannot be gender impartial at times like now). I have spoken of this before. Of how lonesome, tiring, and generally hard it can be. Of how nobody really tells you that is how it is going to be. People always warn you about any impending exams, tests, professional choices, homes, automobiles, phones even; but the act of having children is never reviewed or warned about, at least not until you’ve had them. Once in the club, people commiserate, but they would never tell you these things before you enter the hallowed halls of motherhood/ parenthood. Damn all of you!

I started writing on here as a mother of a newborn. The first one. The early posts were outrageously mommy- centric. And as I grew into my role, I starting writing about other aspects/ topics. There were even some attempts at fluff pieces (make up, bags, shoes), as I’d like to call them, but I have realised that at the end of day, this is one aspect of my life that is all- consuming. Therefore, it is a manic- mum- life (the title has greater meaning- I shall maybe someday share them).

I thought maybe it is the early days that are the hardest. Helpless bundle of cells and organs that human babies are. But I’m here to report (from the trenches no less), that it doesn’t seem to get any easier. Listening to Michelle Obama talk about it (how she was her own person, doing her own things and chasing life, even while in a marriage- until she had her first child), I realised- the resentments and feeling of helplessness aren’t entirely my own. My homemaker mother feels them, my working- mom friends feel them, our grandmothers felt them. Your other half generally gets to flit in and out, and contribute when they wish, but you have the major burden of responsibility- barring any unusual circumstance.

I now wonder about these things, because amidst the chaos of having young children and trying to have a semblance of a professional life, I had to move in with my parents for a while. Two years, in fact. And now that those two years are up, reflecting on them puts into perspective another thing that I’d heard from the Obamas – Mrs. Obama asked her mother to move in with them to the White House the entire duration they were there. For the childrens’ sake. For some order among the chaos.

Moving back with one’s parents has its downsides no doubt. Being treated like a child sometimes, when you are thirty and used to living life your way isn’t easy. Especially when you consider living in an Indian household. But the complete and utter freedom I felt of having my mother with my children while I was off to work (a surgical fellowship can be as taxing as a Presidency!) for long- stretches of time is unexplainable. You have to live it to believe it. I travelled to attend workshops, conferences; stayed away for days. I missed my kids, so did they; but not for one moment was I concerned about their well- being or safety. My children had another person to be ‘their person’, apart from me. A person to run to when hurt or sick. The next best thing to their mother- or maybe even better (the selflessness of a grandmother trumps the duty- bound cares of a mother). It was in short, a miracle. Suddenly, at least for a while, I had found an island of calm. I could learn my craft, be a good mother, be a better surgeon, work on projects and things that were important to me prior to becoming a mum; and generally find myself again.

Like all things in life, that too had to come to an end of course. Shorn of the luxury, moving to a new city, looking for a another job and trying to get used to ‘ the new normal’ again has been gritty. I am often left thinking of the early days with my firstborn, the utter all- consuming nature of them. The children suddenly bereft of their ‘people’ seem to cling to me with a fervour that I haven’t seen since they were nine months old. Staying at home with them full time for the past couple of months has amplified it all. And yes, I have lost my people too. The upside of being treated like a child by your parent is the care and attention you receive. Someone actually puts food on the table for you, someone asks you if you want a cup of coffee, the laundry gets folded (magically) more often than not, people fuss over you when you are even slightly under the weather- unfathomable luxuries while being an adult and parent. It is a gift and a bane, for you start to lean on a crutch that is likely not permanent.

Anyhoo, all that’s done and dusted. And now we move on to new adventures. New lessons. New troubles. The city now is Thiruvananthapuram- the capital of God’s Own Country!

Let the parenting conundrums continue.

Till next time,

J.

Mommy Calls

It has been a long night. Most nights are this way now. But thankfully (or not) dawn has arrived and I sit here with a cuppa while The Little Man sleeps on his papa.

I think back to my days as a rotating resident in general surgery. The night shifts. Doesn’t matter which part of the body you decide to hack up for a living, the initiation is almost always by general. I won’t get into the arguments of which surgery is hardest and other trick questions like that, but general is by far the most busy with ortho coming in a close second. Of course, this depends on the kind of hospital you work in.

You go in, all prepped for the night. Meet the guy/ girl from the previous shift in whichever bay/ area/ bathroom/ OR/ closet/ cafeteria that he/ she wants to meet you in. After the hell she has been through, she earns the right to choose the meeting area.

You sit for a mere fifteen minutes or so and try and absorb the barrage of info that she assaults you with. Meanwhile the wretched bleep on the table goes off about 5 times (on a good day/ night). She wraps up her “endorsement” and right at the end casually throws in the fact that apart from the last five bleeps, the four before that are also mine. You are welcome!

The night passes in a haze of pressing abdomens, probing arses and squeezing pus from all sorts of nether crooks and crannies of the human body.

(Thank God I deal with Head and Neck in my world!)

On good nights, you  may see the bed in one of the on call rooms. The operative word being SEE. You see it, and you wish to sink into its hard, noisy springs. But you just sit on it for ten minutes or so and type away pending charts furiously while the bleep/ pager goes berserk next to you. All you bloody wanted is to hide away for five minutes, gather you ragged breath, steady yourself and get the darned charts updated. Damn you surgical gods!

As the night progresses, you get into The Zone. You go into auto- pilot. Your senses are heightened, your concentration is at it’s peak. You don’t have to think, you just do.

As dawn approaches, you are almost experiencing a high. You know the end is near. At the appropriate hour, this shall be over. The burden shall be offloaded from you to another. (of course, there are still incomplete charts, pending cases, rounds..). You look forward to your cool shower and warm bed later.

I try and get through my mommy calls similarly. I prep for the night, gather all my supplies and mentally grit myself for what lies ahead every night. But there are no endorsements, no handing over. No end. THIS. CALL. NEVER. ENDS. Save me lord.

Some nights, we (aka MR H and I) tag team and therefore things are a tad easier.

I am a sissy mother, who does not sleep train her children willingly. I rock, sing, bounce, sway, soothe, cuddle, nurse my baby to sleep. I put him to sleep by ‘whatever means necessary’.

My first born was the same as a baby. And I can now tell you folks that I did not ruin her for life by doing so. She sleeps on her own and stays asleep, until morning of course. So I guess there is hope, but not in the near future.

As the night progresses, you get into The Zone. You go into auto- pilot. Your senses are heightened, your concentration is at it’s peak. You don’t have to think, you just do. You change, nurse, bounce, rock, sing automatically and do whatever it is that needs to be done.

But, the thought that this call does not have an end hour, is utterly thought defeating.

The main difference between the hospital calls and this is the loneliness. And the bright lights. There is a buzz around you in the hospital. Here, I move around in dim lights,  half- awake and not quite asleep, soundlessly (lest I disturb the older one) while I try to do whatever I need to do to put the baby to sleep and keep him that way.

Won’t lie to you folks, some nights I am at the threshold of insanity and want to pull my hair out and run out into the streets of Doha in my spit- up soaked pyjamas, bellowing profanities into the universe. Just like I sometimes want to do when I’m dealing with stubborn/ weird/ drunk patients or unreasonable, know- it- all nurses on a particularly bad call.

However the night goes, the first rays of sunlight brings hope. I’m not sure why, but things always look less bad when looked at from the other side of dawn. I know this too shall pass. And unlike the first time, the utter dejection and the constant worry of “Is my life f*&^ed for ever” isn’t quite there.

I am tired folks. So, so, so very tired….

Oops, I think I dozed off. There goes my pager again. The human one.

Till next time.

Dr J

Holidays

When I first started this blog, about three years ago, I never did have to think so much. I mean, I pretty much penned (rather typed) my thoughts on here, as and when they poured forth. As days became more rushed, the posts became forced. Now, we have reached a point where I sit in front of the laptop and wonder what would interest you folks. I forget sometimes, rude as it sounds, it was never about the readers. This was a pressure release valve. A place to vent.


I am off from work for a couple of weeks. Therefore I am at home with the babies- full time. I keep them fed, clothed, bathed and entertained (kind of). I make sure they are safe and comfortable at all times. Yet, when the dust settles (more like when the toys move from the carpet to the boxes) and as the day draws to a close, I feel like I have whiled away time and have accomplished nothing. I have not worked on my papers, or read up on anything. I have done nothing to better myself or the world. I feel like a lazy slob, who willed the day away.

Worse, even though I feel like I achieved nothing, I am beyond exhausted.

I deem myself to be an utter failure because I cannot get my 3 month old to nap for even an hour. Ha, not even 30 mins. Nor can I get my three year old to eat anything truly nutritious. I ain’t even one of those hip mums who has summer activities and playdates planned out. My idea of a playdate is a trip to the mall and playing peek-a-boo amid the clothes racks. We do make almost weekly trips to the beach, but the time spent in the car (with screeching baby and whining child) far outstretches the time spent on the sand because come on, it f*&^ing 50 degrees outside. Who are we kidding!

My ‘annual vacation’ is being eaten away by this mundanity, or so I feel. Of course, I enjoy the lie ins, and the late nights. I don’t have to set an alarm for a few days and I can veg out the entire day in my PJs. I appreciate these small mercies. Yet, I cannot for the life  of me get this irrational, stupid, annoying, nagging feeling out of my head. Of being useless.

The fault is mine. Entirely mine. Just before the start of this “break”, I had grand plans for myself. Of getting our schedules on point. Have the baby and child sleep and wake up at humane hours. Of working on my fitness. Of seriously getting some work done on my pending work projects aka research and review articles. Of maybe even attempting an exam or two, and get a couple of collegiate memberships under my belt. Of getting the three year old into some classes. Hahahahahaha…..

Even though, I’m not really ‘busy’ (with busy being a relative term) I am constantly on a short fuse because small, independent, outspoken humans are hard work. Battling the will of an intelligent, stubborn 3 year old is a lost cause. Add another smaller human attached to your body and constantly needing outfit changes into the mix, and a brain constantly telling you that you have so much to do- your fuse is about a nanometer long.

At the risk of sounding like a monstrous mother, I will admit that I am much better off as a working mum. I do so much more. I offer so much more. I accomplish so much more.

All the rushing, and I suddenly realise I have no idea how to relax. I truly don’t.

Also, if  time expands to fit the tasks at hand, it also contracts and becomes nothing when you don’t do much.

So, here I am. Venting, past midnight. A sleeping baby on my lap and me straining over him and typing on my laptop. A true picture of “a mum who doesn’t have her S*&t together”.

And oh, did I mention that my three year old had a McDonald Happy Meal for dinner.

To giver her company, I made instant ramen.

We sat in front of a screen playing Caillou.

But the kids are alive, the parents are fed, the home is livable, the bathrooms are scrubbed and the toys have found their night homes.

F*^& the other s%^t I say!

 

Till next time.

Dr J.

 

Weekend tittle tattle.

How are you folks?

I’m in a bit of a chatty mood.

Most days, when I’m at home I’m passed out cold somewhere. On the couch with the laptop dangling over the edge, or with my face squished into the pages of a poor book. In the guest bedroom, with half- folded laundry. On the breakfast table in the kitchen with the coffee gone cold. You get the drift…

Therefore, even with the best intentions of keep up with the whole blogging, and online journaling thinggy- I never quite manage to put up even a couple of decent posts a week.

These days, I feel like I have so much to share. Mum and baby wise. “Coping with work” wise. Tips, tricks and hacks that have helped me survive. Alas, this knackered body, and the foggy, preggo brain are just not that cooperative.

Honestly, I thought the so called “pregnancy brain” was an urban myth. Propagated by lazy, pregnant mums who needed excuses to not do stuff that they do not enjoy doing. I hate putting the laundry to dry, or empty the waste bins. So, it is pretty darn easy for me to just say “Honey, I forgot”.

No folks, IT is truly a THING. A REAL MALADY. My keys, my stamp, my pager- I can never find them even if they are in the very same places that I always leave them. I forget my own pre- natal appointments and scan dates. I am so tired by the time I finish clinics (mind you- it’s not even a theatre or call day) that I forget simple, little details like the fact that my first born needs to be picked up from this thing called nursery before I head home.

I write everything down these days- then forget the bloody planner at home, or (the worst) in some random OR in the theatre complex. I then have to retrace my steps, hoping that some nosey consultant, or nurse has not been reading my most personal scribblings (e.g.notes like-mention to the doc the insane “lightening crotches” in the past couple of days!).

Baby Preparation wise, I am no where close to being ready. I had my first one, a little less than three years ago. But honestly, I don’t have much of the stuff with me anymore. Last time around, by this time, my hospital bags were packed and almost ready to go. Not so this time. I have picked up a few bits and bobs during the January sales (read- about 6 baby grows and a blanket) but no where near the amount of stuff that I might need to survive the first month.

I have a Grand 8 Weeks as maternity leave before I jump (and hopefully not sink and drown) back full throttle into work, therefore I need to get my pumping act together right from the get go. Last time, I had a good six months off and was therefore lax with the whole pumping shebang. A Medela Harmony worked just fine last time. This time though, I’m going all out- so the Pump In Style Advanced it is. Good news is the pump has been ordered, and I’m awaiting delivery (pun intended). It is ridiculously expensive to buy one in Qatar (read 2700 odd QAR), so I’m having Mr H’s friend (imagine! that too with other more embarrassing accessories) ship it from the U.S. The things we do to skimp on a few extra Rials here and there 🙂

The changing bag has arrived as well. From the U.K this one (seriously, looks like only the clothes will be bought here in Qatar). Will share more on that one soon.

And for those who have been asking- I plan to deliver at Women’s again this time. For several reasons. Might share more on that in another post.

That is all I have time for this morning folks. I have let Zoe have a lie- in to accomplish this. It’s time to wake the little, sleeping “monster” up, or I will end up ruining her (Okay, mine!) entire schedule.

Have a lovely Saturday folks.

Till next time.

J.

 

Dearest Zoe.

Today has been a hard day. I fought valiantly. I gave it my all. I warred with all my might.

My might obviously isn’t mighty enough.

You won every fight. Hands down. No arguments there.

I lost and there is no shame in it. I lost miserably, but I lost to you – my dearest. And though I’m clutching dearly to my threadbare sanity, I will live. To fight another day.

You may kick and scream and throw yourself violently to the hard- tiled floor like you did today. You may survive on just four strawberries and two morsels of rice for a day. But remember my dear, your Mama is trying her best. She is only trying to do what she thinks is good for you. Who knows, maybe she is right, maybe she is not. Just give her the benefit of the doubt please.

I’m not sure how your almost brand new brain processes emotions. But I’m assuming you don’t take things to heart.

You surely do not. Otherwise you wouldn’t throw a hundred watt smile my way the minute you wake from your nap. A nap that was induced by relentless crying for something that you could never have. A nap before which I yelled at you. Literally. And told you in very forceful tones that you cannot always have your way.

If you were anything like an adult, you would despise me. For all the rules. The discipline. The number of times I say NO. You would probably be plotting ways of running away. Or better still, of taking control of Mama.

Thankfully, you are not. You are but a two year old. Vivacious, sassy and incorrigibly adamant. I wish I had half the fight you have. I would breeze through my days if I did!

For all the times I say no, and for all the times I stop you from being yourself,  forgive me. I am just a frail and emotion- ruled mama who is trying to get through her day.

I see how important it is for you to clean the toilet seat with your toothbrush, and how wonderful the table salt looks, strewn decoratively on the leather sofa. (Like snowflakes on the tarmac perhaps).

I secretly admire your sheer guts in trying on my 4 inch heels and then climbing the bed with them on. When you manage to wiggle and contort yourself out of your shoulder straps of the car seat, even after I have tightened them to the point where you can barely fill your lungs fully; I am flabbergasted. I am also amazed at your sheer will and tenacity.

Disregard my reproaches and calls to slow down, my child. Forget all the inhibitions and doubts I unconsiously instil within you.

My fears are my own, and they should not be yours too. My failings and insecurities should not be your burden to bear.

When the time comes, spread your wings and fly my dear, as high as you can. As high as you want to. Remember that the sky is truly the limit.

Let no one, including  this silly Mama of yours, tell you what you are capable of. Let no one dictate what you can and cannot do. Heed my advice, but do not be a slave to them.

Remember one thing if that is all you remember. Despite all your quirks and idiosyncrasies, irrespective of your shortcomings and occasional disobedience; I shall love you. Unconditionally.

I shall be there, whenever you need/ want/ wish for me. And I shall find an inconspicuous corner for myself, and be out of sight, when you don’t need me to be hovering over you. I shall try.

For now, all I ask of you is to eat three decent meals a day, and help me keep yourself injury- free and alive. (Hint- climbing to the head rest of the couch and jumping off is not a good idea.)

 

Yours truly.

Haggard Mama.

 

 

Running away from errands.

Running errands.

It’s amazing how often we mention the phrase. Every time a friend calls, if I’m not at work I tell them I’m either doing chores at home or “running errands” outside.

Coming from a simple, salaried household- as a child I never saw my parents “just chilling”.

Ever.

Hard work was valued above all else. If my parents ever caught me sitting and watching TV or idling reading (reading novels, even classics was not considered a worthy use of time) they would invariably ask “Don’t you have school work to do? Or something more useful…”.

Therefore, it is passive- aggressively ingrained within us at a tender age, that it is criminal to do nothing. Doing nothing means watching a movie, or reading a non- scientific book, surfing the internet, blogging, even running.

Pray tell me folks, why do we relentlessly pursue chores and errands?


 

I spent last night sewing up cut, torn, broken people. Without a break, like a machine.

I was assigned to one of the tiny, surgical rooms in the ER. Triage would send people (bruised, harassed, bleeding folks who have been waiting for at least 4 hours) over. I would take a brief history, get X-rays if needed, assess the injury, sew them back up, fill in a bunch of papers, prescribe medications and send them on their way.

I remember reporting to work at 2150 hours, I remember looking at my watch one last time before I removed it from my wrist and tucked it away at one of the knee pockets of my cool, navy cargo scrubs. The next time I looked at it, it was 0547 hours.

Saying it was an intense 8 hours will be a gross understatement. Eight hours, on my feet, sometimes on my knees or squatting (you wouldn’t want to know why). Eight hours of craning my neck. Eight hours of placating disgruntled patients. Eight hours of concentration. And the pressure of seeing the “next guy” as soon as “this one is done”.

I finish my shift, gather up my belongings, grab a tepid coffee from the cafeteria and head to my car. I can sense summer approaching, the air isn’t so chill anymore and the sun is already on it’s way up. Until recently, it used to be dark at this time.

I open the sunroof all the way back and roll the windows down, my lungs crave some un-conditioned air. I listen to Mike Posner singing about how he took a pill in Ibiza and I lazily drive back home with the sun right in my face.

As I turn the lock of my front door, I already have a minute by minute plan for the next hour. Mr H and Z will have to leave in an hour. My shower will have to be a short, clinical one. No soaking in the soothing, luxury of the warm water or enjoying the citrusy- fresh fragrance of  the new Bath and Bodyworks shower gel.

An hour and fifteen minutes later, the home is devoid of other humans. The bed beckons, but I sense my body has moved on. It has realised, the sleep for the day does not exist and therefore it will make do without it.

I have washed laundry, lying in a pile in the guest room. It is as tall as my two- year old. The hurried cooking session for the nursery run, means a decent sized dish- pile in the sink. There is a long, pending salon visit, the dry- cleaning needs to be picked up, the car needs repair.  Cupboards need organising, make- up brushes are desperate for a cleanse,  some work- related emails need urgent replies. And oh! I need to feed  myself.

The little, salaried-parent’s child, self in my head tells me there is not a second to spare. I will be toddler and work free for the next few hours, and I should make the most of it. Get as much as possible done. I can sleep tonight.

Go on, get to it. She tells me. That darned voice in my head.

Chop, chop.

There’s TONS TO DO WOMAN! She screams.

I fight back.

I kick back, put my feet up on the recliner and settle in to watch a movie. To hell with doing chores and running errands.

Call me an escapist, procrastinator, or whatever else you wish to. I have about 5 precious, free hours, before I make the mandatory trip to the place where they keep little humans occupied till their antecedents come back for them. As sleep declines my proposal, I shall hook- up with youtube and do nothing for a bit.

It’s now 1330 hours. I did manage to fold some laundry and put it away while watching random crap on the tube, and yes I also got some work done over the phone, and I fed myself.

Everything else will have to wait.

For today, I shall hide from chores and run away from errands.

But I do feel insanely guilty about it. And my spunky, lazy self doesn’t appear so cool anymore.

 

Till next time,

Dr J.

Being a crappy mum.

I honestly despise the organic, organised- playdate obsessed, daily-trips-to- the- park, let’s bake teddy cupcakes to nursery, TYPE- A mums that are constantly posting holier- than- thou updates on Facebook and asking really stupid sounding (at least stupid sounding to more ‘go-with-the-flow’ mummies like me) questions on the half a billion or so “mommy forums” on the internet. They irk me no end.

I believe these mums and their presence on the web will be the death of women like me. The cause of the death of our sanity and peace of mind.

By their standards, I am an utterly useless, totally crappy mum. Yes. I said it- I am a crappy, crappy mum!

I let my child eat sweets at odd hours- if that is the need of the hour.

I let my toddler sit with the iPad- if that is what it takes for me to get ready for work.

I bribe my baby to the potty, because her being constipated bears far worse consequences.

I sometimes distract my little one while she eats, so that I can get a few morsels into her very active, but grossly underfed system.

Trying to tame my baby’s locks in the wee hours of the morning, long before she is truly “awake” generally puts my little princess in a particularly dour mood, so I sneak a hair tie into her nursery bag, hoping the teaching assistants at the nursery get the hint. And she goes to nursery a little sour faced and looking distinctly unkempt but less pissed off than she would be if I tried to put her in pigtails.

I let her stay up late, if that is the only time I might get with her in the next 36 hours.

I break a LOT of rules from the Guide to Organic Helicopter Parenting Handbook. A dozen a day, maybe more.

'You know at some point we have to stop swaddling him, right?'
‘You know at some point we have to stop swaddling him, right?’


 

I wish we lived in simpler times. I really do.

I don’t recall my parents ever obsessing about things the way we do, and apparently our grandparents were even less “obsessive”. The kids ate when hungry and slept when tired. They went to school to study, did a bit of homework here and there; and frolicked around as they chose for the remaining time. I remember doing that as a child.

I don’t have a problem with anybody raising their child a particular way. To each their own. But this crazy, hovering style of parenting, and it’s very vocal proponents are like an infection that creeps up upon you. Into your system, slowly; without you ever realising it. And if you don’t give into it, you might end up feeling inadequate and miserable.

Once you do give in, there is no end to it. Like a cancerous cell, it multiplies – grows and feeds on you until it consumes you.

My other half/  the father to my child is my vaccine against this disease. One who moderates almost all my parenting decisions, both big and small. One who usually aborts the fanciful, wasteful, gimmicky parenting actions. And reminds me, each day to try and keep things “old-school”.

I can almost hear him say, ” Our parents went with the flow, and we turned out okay, RIGHT?”

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Till next time.

Dr J.

The time of our lives.

I had an epiphany this afternoon.

It wasn’t a particularly extraordinary afternoon; it was in fact one of those mundane, lowly ones. I was driving home after a gruelling  8 hour ER shift and the traffic was uncommonly horrendous.

I had to wait full hog at every one of the nine, painfully long traffic signals on the way to Z’s nursery and the seven damned ones back home.

People driving around me seemed rude, rash and inconsiderate, and I was ravenously hungry- which in turn made my head throb (I have “hunger migraines” as I like to call them).

The joy meter was hovering over the ‘dangerously low’ mark, and the darkness within beckoned with her icicle arms. As a creature prone to odd highs and weird lows, it seemed like an opportune moment to wallow in one’s self- created miseries.

And then it hit me. With a gentle tug though, not a crashing thump like people usually say it does.

The epiphany.

What if these incredibly trying times, are the times that will most impact us.

What if these days are the days that make us who we are truly destined to be.

What if, unknowingly we are actually having the time of our lives?

The best days. The most productive. The fantastic, exciting, alive days.

Doing things and accomplishing goals that would have once seemed impossible.

Heavens forbid, what if these are the days that we would fondly look back upon. Days that we were at our physical prime, honing our unique set of skills to their zenith.

Days that challenge us, tease us and as cliched as it sounds- days that make us better. Sharper.

I am not sure if I believe in pure, pre- determined destiny or in unchallenged, human free-will. I don’t honestly care either way. But I’d like to believe that what doesn’t kill us DOES make us stronger. Once you have been in neck- deep shit and survived, you wouldn’t even bat an eyelid the next time you are in it waist deep! So, dial down the anxiety folks.

This is it. Life.

Take it or leave it honey, she says. And smiles; mockingly. Alluringly. Batting her long, flickery eye-lashes and and gazing at you with faux warmth and affection. She promises much, but beware; for she is a fickle, remorseless creature. One that is in no way indebted to you. You are but given a free gift, one that is not designed to your likes or preferences, so use it the way you deem most fit. For there are no replacements and definitely no cash refunds.

You and I are most likely having the time of our lives. So, let us give in and have fun while being beaten around ragged. Along the way, let us teach Ms. Life a teach or two of our own. For throwing us around and dragging us in the mud like a battered, beleaguered rag doll.

Till next time.

Dr J.

 

P.S. Just realised what must have been the trigger for the general bleakness- bumping one’s car 😦

Of life, love and laughter.

It is all about the little things. Things that shouldn’t matter but do.

A handsome, older gentleman smiles at the rearview and thanks you profusely for letting him pass in maddening traffic when everyone else just pushed through.

It doesn’t matter, but you suddenly believe that the embers of decency and chivalry are yet to completely die out in this seemingly rude and impolite world.

You finally are able to let your little one participate in the costume party at nursery because for once you find a costume that fits. On a whim, you make a chance trip to a toy store in the post-call, hazy afternoon trip back home. She will be a tinker bell with a skirt that is a tad too long, but it will do and you feel like a less crappy mum. All the guilty thoughts of a mom that works too many nights and is absent on too many holidays abate for a moment.

It shouldn’t matter, but it does. An inane costume party at nursery matters!

It’s 3 AM and it’s been a long night in the trauma room. But when a barely conscious, construction worker with a split open face thanks you for sewing it back up, and tries to smile for you- you are secretly elated.

A simple thank you shouldn’t matter, but it does. And there is a spring in your step. At 3 AM.

Your mum is visiting for a couple of weeks, and suddenly there is hot food on the table and a bathed and content baby running around every time you are back from work.

You never knew hot food and a fed and cleaned baby mattered this much.

The husband fills up your car with fuel while making a grocery trip, just like that.

The next morning you notice the needle point at ‘F’ and not ‘E’; you are thrilled that you don’t have to battle it out at the nearest (i.e. about 20 mins away) WOQOD/ fuel station for the next four days.

It matters.

All the small, little things add up and voila, you have a great day.

A little bit of love, a little bit of laughter and some unexpected charities- that is all we seek ultimately.

I’m sorry folks, for being a laggard with posts on the blog recently. Being busy is one excuse, but honestly it’s been the will that is lacking more than the time. As time wore on, the habit of writing here wore away, and like a friend to whom you haven’t spoken for a while, it started getting awkward. I would have the blank page open, would have half a dozen thought threads running simutaneously in my head, but my fingers would be still. Finally, sleep would take over. And that was that.

Anyhoo, things have been as usual and we are still here in this tiny, desert town (as I like to call it). The little one turns two tomorrow (whoa! when did that happen) and we have absolutely no plans for the day. Now the question is, does it matter?

Till next time.

 

Dr J.

Runday Monday- Why I quit running..

I have quit.

There.

I have said it.

Out loud.

* Long breath*

The mojo has long been murdered by circumstance, though I can not be blamed for giving in without a fight.

I fought, long and hard. But my loss was pre-ordained, almost inevitable.

I could blame dodgy knees. Or work-days which stretch into the ungodly hours of the night. An endless barrage of chores and domestic tasks that magically burgeon in every hour that they lay undone. Presentations which crop up every week and pre- rounds that begin at the crack of dawn.

Regardless of the raison d’être, the guilt and helplessness (of not doing what one wants/ yearns to do) has been festering within for long now. Letting go, has been a relief. Unexpectedly I sense a calm resignation descend upon me, one that soothes frayed nerves and restless thoughts. It’s better now. Like emesis post a long episode of relentless nausea. The pressure is slowly but surely fizzling out, and the competitiveness and will to go harder, faster and further has dimmed and almost died out.

I thought such a day might never come about. Heck, I did not know such possibilities existed.

But then I always thought things wrong!

Life truly is an evil, manipulative, sadistic ol’ devil.

 

 

Till next time.

Dr J.