Thursday, February 28, 2013

Quote of the Day

Silence has often wounded me more deeply than any other sound.  It's the sound of someone's heart who is just not interested enough in me to make an attempt.  Many of us choose silence because we don't know what to say, but it gets translated instead as "I don't care about you" whether you mean it that way or not.
- Wendy in her post The Sound of Silence from the Practical Theology For Women blog.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Bible Verse of the Day

Right now I need wisdom.

I need wisdom to know how best to look after Rory.  We are seeing a paediatrician (who saw Rory in the hospital) in Perth next week because we suspect Rory has silent reflux.  We have elevated his cot mattress to a 45 degree angle and are giving him Infacol.  If it's not reflux, I don't know what it is.  It is very hard to get him to sleep for any decent period during the day which means I don't get a sleep either.  He seems to be in pain and screams a lot. 

I'm also thinking, What if we're wrong?  What if the paediatrician says there's nothing physically wrong with him?  What if it's just his personality that's grumpy and wakeful? 

I need wisdom to know who to consult.  There's a bewildering array of medical professionals and well-meaning friends out there who will tell you all sorts of things.

Thanks Amanda for reminding me that God gives wisdom to those who ask for it.

Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance.  Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.  If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him.
James 1:2-5


Tuesday, February 26, 2013

5 Most Encouraging Motherhood Posts

These are the ones I'll keep coming back to, both now and in future years.

1.  Baby Shower Sermonette - Women Bible Life
2.  Giving In To Motherhood - Women Bible Life
3. Gospel Centred Parenting For Real Life - GirlTalk
4. How To Be A Successful CHRISTIAN Parent (Or Not) - No Reading At The Breakfast Table
5. So I'm Not Alone Then - No Reading At The Breakfast Table

Monday, February 25, 2013

Quote of the Day

Thank you for your words of encouragement and for just checking how I've been going.  I appreciate it.

A true friend stands by your side in the storm and reminds you that there are sweet and sunny days to come.
- Kathryn T. Shaw

Friday, February 22, 2013

Stand By Me by Ben E. King

One thing I firmly believe in is that true friends will stand by you when you're down and out, and will still be there when you come out the other side.

Right now I feel like such a bad friend since I'm taking forever to return phone calls and emails, and every conversation with me is self-centred and depressing.  I rarely smile and rarely laugh.

But I have hope that it will pass and will one day be a distant memory.

I can relate to these lyrics at the moment:

When the night has come,
And the land is dark,
And the moon is the only light we'll see,
No I won't be afraid, no I won't be afraid,
Just as long as you stand, stand by me.

If the sky that we look upon,
Should tumble and fall,
And the mountains should crumble to the sea.
I won't cry, I won't cry, no I won't shed a tear,
Just as long as you stand, stand by me.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Back at the Ranch...

Life continues on more or less normally for our furry and feathered friends after Rory's arrival.

Ebony is curious and a bit miffed about this strange and noisy creature that has come into the house and taken her place on our laps.  Sometimes she sniffs Rory while I'm feeding him as if to say, "Who are you, boy?  And what are you doing in my house?"  Poor puss is choosing to spend an increasing amount of time outside or on the special chair in the loungeroom that she has reserved for herself.

Got my hands full feeding.  Ebony wanted to sit on the armrest and 'help'.

Everyone wants to sit on Duncan's lap.

The dogs don't seem to care what's going on as long as they get dinner, walks, pats and go to work on the ute.
Here is Duncan making our girls sit for their bones.

Patience, Maya girl, patience.  Yours is coming.


Wednesday, February 20, 2013

More Bubba Photos

Cuddles with Dad in hospital.

I really don't want a bath!

Please nooo!

Ok, it wasn't that bad.


On Daddy's lap.

Four weeks old and all ready to go and watch Dad play tennis.  This is my new favourite photo of the bubba.

Hehe I reckon he looks like a little old man in his shirt and pants. :)

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Quote of the Day

Another one I pinched from girltalk:

Hope itself is like a star - not to be seen in the sunshine of prosperity, and only to be discovered in the night of adversity.
- Charles Spurgeon

Friday, February 15, 2013


Yesterday, Duncan, Rory and I went to Albany to see a lactation consultant to find out why Rory goes mental while feeding and I can't calm him, and always seems like he is pain after feeds and just won't settle.  We were wondering if it was wind, silent reflux, or if I need to go off dairy (as someone suggested he might be lactose intolerant).

Well, it is very premature to say we have won this battle, but at least she has given me some hope.  She corrected my latch, gave me a new feeding plan, and it turns out he has lactose overload (but not intolerance) because he drinks too much.  Basically the bubba is a pig (he snorts a lot while feeding, too) and is giving himself a belly ache.  I have to make sure he is drinking enough hindmilk, and not just foremilk.  And I was worrying that he wasn't getting enough!  He is a greedy bubba who loves his milk!

Today was my first day alone with Rory.  My mum has gone home.  It felt like either having her stay or having her go were both bad options (either I have meals prepared, washing done and a clean house, but no sanity, or I just let it go, but at least have space to parent Rory how Duncan and I decide).  Duncan knows full well what she's like, but felt like it would be better to have her here helping (I replied that I value my mental health more than the state of the house at the moment).  I know what Deb meant about having people 'watching'.  I am so over criticism for putting Rory in a bouncy seat, for giving him the antibiotics he was prescribed for his ear infection (umm duh I choose to listen to the doctor on that one), for taking painkillers when I first hurt my back, for wrapping Rory when he sleeps, for putting the airconditioning on or not putting it on...argh!  It's very unnverving when you're finding your feet.  I can't say today was a great day; Rory wouldn't nap for very long which meant my plans for a sleep didn't eventuate.  He keeps getting out of his wrap no matter how tight I wrap him.  But he won't sleep without being wrapped because he keeps waking himself up by swatting his arms in his face.  Then he just screams and screams *sigh*.  I worry because I've found him a few times with the wrap over his face.  But at least I am still somewhat sane, Rory is still alive, and it is the weekend tomorrow.  Some say weekends don't mean anything when you're a mother, but they do to me!  Duncan will be home.  Yay!

My GP has given me a referral for counselling for postnatal depression.  I can't start meeting with this lady soon enough!  Unfortunately she doesn't come to the town near where I live so I'll have to travel about 45 minutes away (not easy when you can't drive).  It looks like I might have to wait a few weeks.

I still feel so vulnerable for my last post, but then I figured if some random person is struggling out there and reads it and is helped, then it is not a waste of cyberspace.  It's like the quote I posted back in December 2011:

Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another, "What!  You too?  I thought I was the only one."
- C.S. Lewis

Thank you for your prayers. I have hope that I will get out of this day.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

In The Pit

This is the post nobody ever writes...

Regarding parenting, there are plenty of people who've told me, "It's hard," "It's a blur", "It gets easier," but only a few have actually gone into detail about what specific aspects they found hard and the thoughts and feelings they had at the time.  It's almost like there is a sense of shame and it's taboo to admit that sometimes those thoughts descend into a very dark place.

Right now I feel like I'm in a slimy pit of despair.  On a rare good day I get false hope that I might just be scaling the walls of that dark place and will one day feel sunshine again - real, strong sunshine, not the paltry little bits I feel at the moment.  But then everything falls into a heap again and I can't stop crying.  I can count the days I haven't cried since Rory was born on one hand.  Mostly the tears run non-stop.

To be honest, some days I love him and others I wish he would just go away and never come back. Then I feel so sorry for him because he's so little and helpless and I tell him, "Bubba, I'm sorry.  I want to be a good mum to you."  I thought I was missing most of my heartstrings, but I must have more than I thought because his crying really gets to me and I end up crying too because I can't take his pain away.  Some days I think I'd never hurt him, but other days I can really understand why some mothers drown their children in the bath and self-medicate.  My mind has entertained all sorts of possibilities. There is a real lack of people who will admit to this.  Mostly there is a fear that if I admit it to some mothers, they'd just give me a horrified glare.

I miss my old life terribly; the life where I had time to do things, where I could end the day feeling like I had actually accomplished something other than keeping Rory alive.  Where I was good at something instead of feeling like I'm failing.  I guess I was just happy with it being Duncan, myself and the animals.  I never felt like I needed children to complete me. 

I haven't been to our home church since before Christmas.  Duncan took Rory last Sunday so I got a few hours of precious sleep.  He said after the service all the women descended on Rory to cluck over him.  It's nice that people care (I can't fault our church for that), but I would have found it overwhelming.  I'm not dealing well with crowds of people at the moment, and there is great pressure to say that everything is going well because that's what people want to hear.

People with no children who go on about easy it is, how life doesn't change all that much, how babies are so 'portable' make me want to scream.  The best visitors have been the ones who've brought meals, washed dishes, changed nappies, held Rory so Duncan and I can eat dinner, and offered a listening ear.  They're the ones who don't expect us to roll out a red carpet and offer cake...they BRING cake.  This is in comparison to people who stay until 11pm on a weeknight when Duncan has to work the next morning (I just announced loudly that I was going to bed, hoping they'd get the hint), who don't understand why we won't answer the phone during feed times or when we're napping, or who keep asking when we're coming to visit THEM!  It's like they think Rory is some kind of celebrity and Duncan and I are nothing but his managers who have to cart him around to whoever wants to see him next.  Not likely!

Before I had Rory, I had a childless person bitch to me about mutual friends with kids and how they 'aren't making an effort with the friendship'.  I said to this person, "Hello!  She's just had a baby!  Give her a break!"  That person is probably bitching about me now.  Duncan said, "Don't worry about it.  Let them."

'Accept all the help you can get' is the most ridiculous advice ever!  Not all 'help' is helpful.  My mum has been here supposedly 'helping', but all she has done is cause more stress.  We've never had a good relationship, and I'm sure the amount of arguments we've had is causing Rory to be even more unsettled.  Every day I ask her to leave!  I would rather battle it out on my own.  A good friend told me she completely understood how some people cause new mothers more stress than the baby does.  Before she came, my mum said she would just do whatever we wanted and wouldn't offer 'advice'.  What a load of crap that was!  It has been exactly the same as it was in the lead up to the wedding.  She criticises every decision I make and if I ask her not to do something, she undermines me by doing it anyway.  I'm at my wit's end!

All of this is on top of Rory having an ear infection plus wind and feeding issues.  We have an appointment with a lactation consultant tomorrow and if she can't help us, I'm really considering giving up breastfeeding.  He'll still get breastmilk (I have an electric pump), but just not from the breast.  Each feeding session is an absolute nightmare and I don't need the stress when there are other ways he can get breastmilk (he takes a bottle far better anyway).

Then when Rory was just over two weeks old, I hurt my back bending over to retrieve a DVD out of the DVD player.  I was in agony; Duncan had to help me into bed and get me some painkillers.  I went to the doctor who was far more concerned with my mental state than my back.  I had to go back to be assessed for postnatal depression (which I already feared I had), but the second time he saw me, I was having a good day and he thought I wouldn't need medication for now.  Well, things went dramatically downhill after that and I felt the worst I'd ever felt (I'm sure part of it is connected to having my mum here.  I don't think it's a coincidence that I had a good day on Sunday when she wasn't here).

I know it's considered 'normal' to have a hard time in the first few weeks, but I still feel so alone.  I know some people have far more difficult babies than Rory, but I still feel so alone.  I know I'm not alone in my head, but I FEEL alone.  Maybe others have it far worse, but I feel like my plate is full, and I could never cope with any more than this.

The culture of silence has to be broken.  Mothers joke that they wanted to throw their child against the wall, but nobody admits what they've REALLY considered doing.

All I can do is ask God to help me, trust that He will, and pray that one day I'll come out the other side.

A quote from Up The Duff which so perfectly captures how I've felt:

I was so tired in those early days I thought it would never end.  I cried towards the end of every day when fatigue started to overwhelm me.  We discouraged visitors because rather than offer help, so many seemed to need attention.  The visitors who were really helpful were the ones who would pick up the baby or otherwise make themselves useful around the house.

All at once I felt lonely, but too tired to make an effort to reach out to friends.  It seemed like I was living in a fog of fatigue, robotically waking, feeding the baby and trying to sleep again; like some kind of demented wet nurse on Valium.  Beck told Des to make me go outside for a walk in the afternoons so at least I knew which was day and which was night, and that there was an outside world.  It helped a lot.

I've got to try to go with the flow.  Eddy is waking up every 4 hours, which is not too bad compared with some babies, but I am still absolutely stonkered from lack of sleep.  Not only do you have to live day by day, but sometimes hour by hour, without looking forward or back.

Marg described the first few weeks as 'falling through the day' and she had her sister and mother to help.

Breastfeeding is easier than it was in the beginning, but Eddy still has a lot of trouble attaching...The scar and pain from the caesarean make everything harder, including finding a good position for breastfeeding.  I need two pillows to balance him on, and how to feed him insouciantly and - arrgghhh - in public is a complete mystery to me.

His 'wind' is still bad and he cries and cries inconsolably after all the daytime feeds, really screaaaaaming in the ear of whichever parent is holding him: it's extraordinary how loud a baby can yell.  It's so hard not being able to take the pain away, and hard to remain patient with the crying.  Yesterday I found myself raising my voice in frustration and saying angrily, 'Shut up!', which is about as useful as saying, 'Act your age', and as soothing as a death-metal song.  Luckily I get hold of myself, stop raising my voice, and just end up crying as well....But nothing really helps.  I just have to keep saying, 'This will end, this will end.' (pages 415-16)

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Quote of the Day

I read this over at girltalk and it moved me to tears, particularly with how low I often feel at the moment.  A great reminder that God listens and cares.  I'm trying to lean hard on Him.

This morning listen to the voice of the Lord Jesus speak,
"I will help you.  It is a small thing for me, your God to help you.  Consider what I have already done.  What!  Not help you!  I died for you.  Since I have done the greater, will I not do less?  Your requests are nothing compared with what I am willing to give.  You need much, but it is nothing for me to grant your needs.  Help you?  Fear not!  I will help you."
- Charles Spurgeon

Friday, February 08, 2013

The Good Old Flannel

One thing that has confused me in recent years is...

Whatever has happened to the good old flannel?

Just to clarify, I mean a flannel like this:

Not this:

Image is from

The second species of flannel should definitely die out haha.

When it comes to showering, nothing beats the good old flannel.  Loofahs have their place, but they cannot compare.  I always chuckle when we stay with good friends and they give me a towel AND a flannel.  Haha they know me too well!

But it seems that flannels are fast becoming an extinct species.  Sometimes when we stay with people and I ask if I can borrow a flannel, they give me blank looks or simply don't own any.  I was horrified when we went to Melbourne and the hotel had no flannels.  I had to go out and buy one.  A hotel with no flannels?  Outrageous.

Yep, what is happening to the good old flannel?

I don't get it.  Please explain

Wednesday, February 06, 2013

5 Things Les Miserables Reinforces About The Christian Life


I've been wanting to see the latest version of Les Miserables at the cinema, but I do wonder if it will top the 1998 version starring Liam Neeson (which wasn't a musical).  I watched that version for the first time a year ago and loved it...especially since I thought it reinforces a number of truths about the Christian life.
1.  God can change anyone.  No-one is beyond His grace.
2.  We can't free ourselves from the bondage of sin.  We need Jesus to do that.
2.  If someone is truly following Jesus, this will be evident by the good fruit they bear in their lives.
4.  No matter how much God has changed you and been at work in your life, there will always be people who doubt you have changed and will use your past against you.
5.  Despite opposition and persecution, do not take revenge.  Keep walking humbly with God and leave vengeance to Him.

This post has been entered in the February edition of the Christian Blog Carnival. If you're a Christian blogger and would like to enter one of your recent posts, submit it here today.

Tuesday, February 05, 2013

2012 Visitors' Honour Roll

Another year of welcoming returning guests and first timers to the farm.  Unfortunately the infamous storm meant we had to cancel some visits which was a bit disappointing.  Who will visit us this year?  I wonder......

Jane and Tim (all the way from Sydney) in January

Eleanor, Rianna, Emma, Hazel, Christina, and Mike in April

Jill and her dog Daisy in April

My parents in June and October

Clayton and Aaron in June.

Sarah in July
Treva, Lucy, and Rod in July and December
Duncan's parents in September
Lee and Tracey in October


Monday, February 04, 2013

Quote of the Day

This is a quote I'm trying to remind myself of when things are tough and I find myself wishing the time away...

I really am your gift.  I'm not just a little person who needs to be 'raised', taught, and taken to activities.  I came to the people in my life to bring a message: slow down.  Feel.  Be.  Over and over again.  When you do you will notice immediately that I am not an obstacle to your work, or inconvenient to your daily life.  Instead you will come to appreciate my honesty, humour, presence, and love.
- Bruce Scott

Friday, February 01, 2013

Friday Funny

I'm not feeling that great today so I thought I'd post a Friday Funny.


Why women can't put on mascara with their mouths closed?

Why you don't ever see the headline, 'Psychic Wins Lottery'?

Why doctors call what they do 'practice'?

Why lemon juice is made with artificial flavour, and dishwashing liquid is made with real lemons?

Why the man who invests all your money is called a 'broker'?

Why there isn't mouse-flavoured cat food?

Why Noah didn't swat those two mosquitos?

Why they sterilise the needle for lethal injections?

Why they are called 'apartments' when they are all stuck together?