You Are Not My Mom…..

I saw a tweet yesterday from a Step Mom, who has taken her time and put all her effort into her Step Daughter. “You are not my mom, so stop acting like it…”

That is equivalent to a Step Mom as it is to a vampire having a stake driven through his heart.

Being a step mom is a balancing act, and it always seems like you are teetering more to once side than the other, it is never clean cut in the middle. Either you are the good step parent or you are the bad step parent. You need to know where to draw the line in discipline and in loving, get either wrong and you are the evil step parent or you are faking it or worse you are trying to buy their love.

Your opinion is always on the back burner, because naturally you are not THE parent, but exclude the child from a photo on your desk, then you are wrong because you need to accept the child as YOUR child too.

It has taken me nearly 8 years to figure this out. I have learnt that although I am not my step daughter’s mom, I am LIKE a mom to her. I leave her; I let her do what she needs to do to make this work for her. We forget that these little people we call step children, did not choose this situation. What they really want is their mom and dad in one home. They didn’t sign up for step siblings and half siblings. They didn’t sign up for every second weekend and alternative Christmases or in my case one long holiday and one short. We did that, we signed them up for it; we are forcing them into a nucleus that they just can’t figure out yet.

So step parents, when your step kid turns around and says things so mean to you that you think you might die, stop and try figure out why? Whether that child is 3 or 17, there is something in their soul that is hurting. Is the child missing home, is the child feeling second rated in daddy’s new family base, is the child feeling unloved? The reasons can be simple or complex, but find out why.

Most of all, love the kid, he or she deserves it. Love your step child like you love your own because one day that kid will be all grown up and will understand and they will love you back, because they secretly do anyway, they just don’t admit it because they are scared to hurt mom or dads feelings.

As a step parent what tips do you have to make it easier for the family? OR are you Step child, how was the experience for you?

She Walks the Walk, but She Ain’t Talking the Talk

Tori is going to be 2 next month,how the hell did that happen?!

Besides the terrible two’s which started at 1, I am battling with the dreaded DUMMY, I have no idea how to get rid of the damn thing! She is so attached to her “myne”, that it just feels downright cruel to force her to give it up.

So besides the general irritation of seeing my child with a handle attached to her face, I am worried about her speech. Maybe I am being paranoid; she does say some things and does listen and follow basic instructions. I am almost certain, well actually 100% positive her lack of speech is contributed to the DUMMY.

She doesn’t have it at school, at all, but the moment her bum sits the car seat, she screams, cries, tantrums for her “Myne” and after a long day at work, I do not have the strength or energy to fight with her or deal with her tantrums over a freaking dummy. But I also have noticed that her speech is (as you have seen by “Myne”) is Dual, she is in an Afrikaans school.

So could her lack of speech be from learning 2 languages or the DUMMY or both? What did you do to get rid of the DUMMY and how long did it take for your little one to adjust to not having a DUMMY?

Yours sincerely,
Desperate mama

Waiting for Tori …part 2

I was the newly elected chairperson for the Union and I was summoned to be part of the mid Term review.  I thought this was awesome, I was being whisked away to a lodge in the Free State for 3 days, I would get to see the inner workings of the Department , have my opinion valued and heard, and just all round work on my career.

When packing for the trip, I packed like any woman who was ending her cycle, extra everything including the painkillers! After all I was due on the 28th and I left on the 26th!

The trip was tough and tiring, I could barely keep my eyes open and they just didn’t feed us enough, or so I thought. It was only on the last day that I had a light bulb moment. It was freezing cold and I was dying of the heat, I could walk, stand, or do anything without feeling like I was going to pass out. Yet I still just pinned it to be exhausted.

By the time I got home, I was officially late. Philip and I bounced the idea around of doing a test, but neither of us courageous enough to actually act on it. So I waited, and waited, and waited some more. Still nothing!

I remember making the call on Saturday, the 30th of October 2010 to be precise, to my bestie. I told her I need to go to a lab and have bloods taken, she was there in a flash.

While in the lab (I don’t trust peesticks) I was so afraid. I was afraid of a negative and even more afraid of a positive. I COULD NOT LOOSE ANOTHER BABY!  While anxiously waiting for my results, bestie and I meandered, had lunch and did the girly thing. Neither of us was focused on anything. She would say let’s call, I would say let’s wait, I would say let’s call se would say let’s wait.  Then my phone rang, in the middle of a parking lot. “Hi, Mrs. Nichols?, this is the Sister from Ampath” I swear I stopped breathing, Alet stopped breathing, the world stopped turning….” Your blood tests are back and your betas are high, congrats you are between 4-5 weeks pregnant” ……breath out, heart pounding, Alet jumping up and down. I was afraid.

With every positive, I always tried to call Philip first, Philip NEVER answers his phone. He was warned the morning he left.  I called him and it rang once. “Babe, its positive” There was no excitement in his voice, when he uttered the words “that’s fantastic” there was fever, pure unadultered fear.

We kept my pregnancy were quite, until 12 weeks, when I ended up in hospital, having an asthma attack and they put me in the maternity ward. Besides I was 12 weeks it was safe to tell everyone, I made the first trimester!.

While I was in hospital, I had many scans, so that the Doctor could monitor the baby with all my meds, well that’s what she told me. They did the bloods and also checked for the Trisomy’s. It was routine according to the nursing staff. I was discharged on the 24th December 2010 and was told they will call me if there is something abnormal with the results.

Weeks went by, and eventually, we adopted, no news is good news……then I got the call. It was my doctor, “ I need to see you now”.

Philip and I rushed to her room expecting the worst, and the worst we got. The Baby’s nuchal fold was too thick and the test results came back positive for Trisomy 18. The devil of all the Trisomy’s.

I was booked for an Amnio on the 22nd January 2011.

I have never prayed so hard in my life, I have never had so many people pull around me, I have never heard so many prayers, I have never cried so hard in my life when I was told I will need to decided very quickly whether I am planning to medically abort or keep. The FSH results were due in 3 weeks and I would be 19 weeks when I got them.

It didn’t take much, when we had the amnio, our baby was moving (she actually has a scar where the needle nicked the bridge of her nose) the baby was ours and it didn’t matter how long we would have her for, what she would be, but we knew she was ours, from God and we want Him to take her when He felt it was time.

It was the longest, most agonizing 3 weeks of our lives.

I got the call at work, and I could hear in my Doctors voice, “ its Negative Tracey, all negative and its definitely a GIRL” My colleagues, erupted with excitement, I didn’t realize they heard it, the celebration was the one I missed on the 11th June2010 Prayer groups erupted, and I sobbed on the phone with my nearest and dearest.

Even though we got a 99.9% clear, 9 months later in the theater waiting for Tori to arrive, Philip and I held our breathes, until the moment on the 24th June 2011 at 3h21 when we heard her screech in anger and announce her vicTORIous  arrival.Image

I have been blessed everyday since then.

11 June

I think for me 11 June will always suck! For many South Africans, they will feel nostalgic about the Soccer World Cup.

So today, 2 years on, I think of my would’ve, could’ve and should’ve baby. I will dream about who you would have been, and how wonderful life would have been with you. Mommy loves you, always did and always will.

That is all.

Golden Oldies

Some days I feel 29 going on 89 and other days I sit back and think, OMG I am THREE OH, next year!

Like I told my brother on my birthday, we are all kind of screwed when the youngest is in their 30’s. This in turn made him grumpy- old fart!

Maybe its just me, but it has taken FOREVER for the reality, that I am actually an adult, to dawn on me. Is it because I am the youngest? Or is it because my family has had a hard time letting go of me?

Recently, I have noticed a trend of everything retro, we are living in a very nostalgic time and everyone seems to be trying to either hold on to their youth, relive their youth or see their childhood in their children. Now to me retro is the 60’s, flower power, Cycladic and all that groovy jazz, but I have noticed that the retro trend is actually the 80’s and the crappy fashion and dodgy hairdos!

There is nothing like watching Smurfs in 3D with your kid and explaining the history of where these little blue fellas originated from, because, you used to watch it! Or watching reruns of MacGyver on TV and remembering CLEARLY how fantastic he was….trust me it’s pretty disappointing now that I have an HD TV.

Or how about Nintendo and Donkey Kong and the Mario bros? Or better yet neon colour tights and mesh gloves? High tops and of the shoulder sweats? MICKEY MOUSE t-shirts…for adults!
It is these things that are making me say, back in my day or when I was little, and it is this that is making me feel so damn old and grown up!

About time, no? NO!

P.S Its just a pity that the retro doesn’t extend to playing cricket matches in the street until the street lights came on, or jumping on your bmx and cruising around the neighbourhood all day long.


Dear Josh

Gosh, its 4 days away from your 8th birthday. 8 years old! To be honest, that just blows my mind!

I am so proud of the boy you have become, you are doing exceptionally well at school (not that I ever doubt your abilities) and you have been faced with some really hectic situations. I am trying to raise you to be proud of who you are, and like you so proudly announced the other day “It’s not what you are on the outside, it’s who you are on the inside that counts” Such a big statement for a little man.

You are super intelligent, but you still need to figure that out for yourself. And when you do, there will be no stopping your curiosity. You are kind, and very tentative to those around you. Qualities I hope you will keep.

Tori thinks you are the best thing since sliced bread, you honestly rock your sister’s world. When you are around everything else pales in comparison. And you are such an awesome big brother! I know that you will always look after your sisters and I know that the 3 of you will always be there for each other, no matter what! Because that is how your dad and I are raising you.
Son, you are definitely one of the best things in my life. I am so privileged to be your mom and when I look at you, I know that I must have done something very right to be granted the blessing that is you!

So as we get closer to your birthday, and as I reminisce about the day the changed my life. I will be thanking God a little more than usual for you.
Always remember, no matter what anyone says, you are awesome. You are amazing. You are kind and you can achieve anything that you set your mind to.

I love you like a circle, my son. I love to the moon, the stars, all the galaxies and back, I love you like bees love pollen. I love you always and always and always


Things I love…….

I am stuck in a blogging rut, I always want to be deep and meaningful and thats just so tedious. So I am doing a list of things I LOVE (besides my kids)

1. The colour pink
2. Caramelo bears
3. Disney channel – I love Disney movies and will watch this channel under the pretense that I was too lazy to change it after the kids left
4. My NEW pocket coil bed – this is mine, no other woman has slept in it but me (long story)
5. Pretty woman, Notting Hill, Titanic and August Rush
6. Reading…I just dont have the time at the moment.
7. Scrap booking …see above
8. Photos – I would love to do a photgraphy course, but that will come in time
9. Pickled onion and peanut butter sandwiches – together – its like an explosion of fantastic in your mouth
10.Long hot baths…ones where NO-ONE comes looking for me….throw in a book and I am in heaven!
11. Stationary-I can stroll in a stationary store for hours!
12. Hardware stores – Builders Warehouse holds my interest more than truworths or any other store does ( besides a stationary store).
13. Grave yards – there is a certain peace in a grave yard. I love strolling through it reading all the head stones, it makes you reflect a bit.
14. The British Monarchy – I am boarderline obsessed with the royal family
15. Sally William Macadamia nougat – my nearest and dearest know that, that is my favourite and I will chew your arm off for it, I am also hesitant to share it with you, I do to be polite, but inside i die a bit.

What are your favourites?