Monday, 28 December 2009

Punching Sandcrabs, and Other Christmas Tales

I am alive!

We have been at my MILs since Christmas Eve ... and nobody has killed anyone yet. It's a fricken miracle. I have *finally* realised the trick of surviving in this house ... expect a terrible time. Expect a really shit, annoying, terrible time, and anything better than that is a bonus. We are all going really well. Which has been kind of disconcerting to me. I am not used to it. We opened presents and then took the boys to the beach on Christmas morning - nobody else was there. We had it all to ourselves.

This is the sandcrab that Dave caught, I managed to snap a photo before Rocco came over and punched it, then stomped on it. It survived and ran onto my leg and I screamed - crabs are WAY too similar to spiders for my liking.

Max pretending to be sad. But he's not - he's staying up late every night, eating too much chocolate, and counting down the days until we drive further north to a cabin. (Nothing fancy, it's in a caravan park. I have packed my Bingo markers ..... I am ADDICTED to Bingo when we come up here.)

Oh Rocco. He is the boss of us all. Dave keeps telling me that he was this blonde when he was Rocco's age, which is a crock of shit. He has this habit of making up his own reality and believing it, therefore it is my mission to set him straight on things. So I innocently asked my MIL what colour hair Dave had when he was small. "Brown." HA. I ran into the loungeroom. "IN YOUR FACE. YOU HAD BROWN HAIR I ASKED YOUR MUM." I didn't realise she was right behind me .... she will always, always take Dave's side in anything. "Oh, actually, he did have some blonde. Yes. Yes it was blonde." Dave was smirking, I wrinkled my nose in disdain, mouthing "BROWN!" .. to him as I walked off.

Here he is frowning at the beach on Christmas Day. See that ridiculous tattoo on his arm? It's a lion. SO DUMB. It appears to be jumping out of a hole in his skin. At least once a month for almost ten years now, I have turned to him and feigned surprise and said "Ohhhhhh, wow! It looks like that lion is jumping out of your arm! WOW."

I can't imagine why he thinks I'm annoying.

Here is my Widdle Timmy. He now gets so irritated at me taking photos of myself in stupid poses that he's started doing it on my camera to get me back.

Have I not taught him The Ways of the Wanker? I'm so proud.


I was telling my sister what a great time I'm having. My sisters always laugh at me coming up here, because it is beyond dysfunctional. I'm even washing up every night -usually I just come and sit down with the guys, as my MIL has a "no men allowed in the kitchen policy."

Which just leaves, you know, ME ..... but, I thought I'd actually make the effort to get on with her this year. My goodness she has responded. I can be a real bitch, but in laying down my weapons, I'm finding she is doing the same. Who knew?

So I was raving on to my sister how great I feel, and she said wow, those happy pills do the trick eh?

And I thought oh fuck, am I actually having a good Christmas this year or is it all false? WTF? Apparently I can never go off these even keel happy pills until I'm 90. By then, I'll deserve to be a crusty, angry, viscious pyscho bitch.

I thought of last years Christmas, which included a particularly nasty argument with Dave on Christmas Eve about wrapping paper.



I pondered this strange, peaceful state this Christmas.

I was so happy in that moment I could burst. Grateful and happy and peaceful and content and full of love.

And then this morning, Dave got up and left to go to the beach AGAIN, for his "time out." And woke Rocco up AGAIN before he left so I had to get up at 6am and mind Rocco. Then Dave came back three hours later, said he was tired, and went to SLEEP.

I was beyond irritated. We had an argument, and I have had a really shitty, annoying day.

THANK GOD. I *am* still real. I am alive.

Apparently anti-anxiety medication cannot stop the fact that your husband can be a real arsehole and piss on your good mood.


Dave asked Tim a while back to find out what I wanted for Christmas. "Ok, what I *don't* want is a SAT-NAV for my car. I know I need one, but I want something for Christmas that's personal and maybe pampering. Please."

Tim mocked me, but said sure, no worries.

I carefully choose presents for all the boys - mountains of wrapped, thoughtful presents. On Christmas morning, Dave looked at Tim and Tim looked at Dave.

"Ummm, where's Edens present??" "You had it." "No I didn't, you had it."

I was annoyed, but enjoyed watching them squirm. If they didn't find it, I was going to have SO much mileage out of it. They found it, in some random bag. I opened it.

It was a SAT-NAV.


Dave had another present for me. I opened it and cried.

He had the school photo of me in Fiji blown up and framed. He said he loves it, thinks it's so exotic. And funny, that I stand out like dogs balls because I'm the only one with red hair.


Later that night, I realised why I cried - Dave is the only person who really "sees me" as a child.

I love him ..... crap lion tattoo especially.


I hope you are managing your holiday season ok. I hope nobody got a fucking SAT-NAV. (Bo-ring).

..... a lot of you are in winter, so I apologise for the beach snaps. (Such a strange concept, to have Christmas in the cold!)

Saturday, 19 December 2009

Jingle Bells, Batman Smells

Remember when you were ten years old .... so glorious and beautiful, all the boys liked you and you always looked so cool. All the girls in your class were so jealous of your effortless ways of looking chic.


Me either.


I actually remember quite a few strange looks when that photo was being taken.


Christmas is upon us. Rocco has destroyed our tree. He nearly shat himself when he saw it all decorated ..... he is obsessed with soccer balls, so he ran towards it shouting BALL! BALL! And then gave all the "balls" on the tree a hug.

Then he ripped all the lights off, as well as the tinsel, santas, and candy canes. I was so sick of re-decorating it all the time that it will now stay like this.

And when I went to take a photo of Max's homemade Angel with only one wing (I love the symbology of our Angel only having earnt one wing) .... I discovered a spider has now started decorating the tree too. With it's shiny web. Can you see it sitting on her left shoulder?

I *hate* spiders, but have granted this one a reprieve. I love the symbology of an angel with one wing sitting on our christmas tree with a frickin' spider on her shoulder.

Lastly, here is our nativity scene. I bought it a few years ago .... a then-three year old Max went running up to it and added his Shrek and Buzz Lightyear. This year we have a skateboarder, Donkey Kong, and of course Buddha sitting next to Mary.

Mario is consoling poor Joseph who lost his head last year. (Which was symbolic of our household last year when the paternal figure almost died.)

I saw Rocco playing with Josephs tiny head saying "BALL."

And now I can't find it.

This nativity scene is not a joke - it represents all the different views and melting pot of people who come together at Christmas time, trying against all odds to make some fun and joy and love out of this fucked-up life.

Merry Christmas, my magnificent friends in the computer. Thank God for blogging. I hope your Christmas time is going ok. I wish you one thing - peace in your heart.

And I hope you don't lose your head too much.

love Eden XOXOX

Tuesday, 15 December 2009

Better. Better get a bucket ..

I've so much to say and so many posts to comment on .. but I just got back from the hospital, Max, Rocco and I are all sick. Tummy bugs, rashes, exhaustion. Had World's Most Indifferent doctor, who might actually work on his bedside manner after being reprimanded by me. Who shouts at a one year old? "OK you, come here. Now."

He's lucky I'm sick.

We are all ok, at home. Thank you for the comments and emails on my last post. I was telling Dave about what you had to say. He was thoughtful for ages ... then goes, "Hon? How does blogging work again?"

He just doesn't understand the concept, calls my bloggy friends "the computer."

"Aw hon you're not going to tell the computer that, are ya?"


Here is a pic I call, "Christmas Sharing." It's probably how I ended up with Rocco's tummy bug.

It was kind of worth it.

Friday, 11 December 2009


Recently I weeded the entire vegie garden. I took a walk around our house .... to find weeds the size of triffids. We have a big area around our house. I was gobsmacked. "DAVE! THERE'S WEEDS EVERYWHERE!"

"No shit, sherlock." He was amazed too - at my obliviousnessnessness.

So I start weeding. Hardcore weeding, man. Heaven. There is nothing better than ripping big long tall weeds out of a garden. I should have hired my garden out, for anger therapy. I was on a mission. Bent over in an inappropriate denim skirt that hung too low and my bumcrack got sunburnt, wearing Havianas and no gardening gloves. Hardcore. My hands became thick and calloused and permanently dirty. When I closed my eyes I saw weeds. I started seeing weeds everywhere ... Max's school, outside the video shop.

Dave just shook his head. My brother came over, finding me weeding again. I said "Mate, this is proof that I can get addicted to ANYTHING. I CAN'T STOP."

I had the choice of getting weedkiller and be done with it. I refused, preferring the natural way much better. I noticed all the different types of weeds. Some were tall and thin and came straight out. Some needed two hands. Sometimes, the weeds were so darn pretty. I felt like I was committing genocide. Who am I to decide who is to stay and who's to go? You! No dirt for you! The purple wildflowers stayed, I didn't have the heart to pull them. Dave would bring them to me years ago, to the small pokey house we lived in while he was building this one. There is something so lovely about handpicked flowers.

I miss that pokey house. Life was simpler then.

After many many days weeding .... I looked around, and got disheartened. There was so many! It was like I'd done nothing! Yet still I kept going. I got to know them. The little soft ones .... the out-of-control succulents, the ones that grew quickly and aggressively, exactly like Daves tumours did last year.

There is a particular type of weed around here ... the mothership. The core issues of weeds. Like, your fucked up childhood in a plant. It grew so thick, and coiled. I couldn't get it out. And it was strangling all the other plants, tangled up in everything and making it all look terrible. I pulled and pulled but could not get it out. It would break off at the surface of the soil, so it's roots were still in there, growing and moving. Like a shapeshifter.

I cracked the shits at it so bad. Using all my strength, it would not budge. I cursed and kicked it and got so angry, ripping pieces off where I could, knowing it would just grow straight back again.

It had overtaken my garden.

It needed weedkiller.


A little over a month ago, things got so bad for me I didn't know what to do. I had let things slide, ignored my need for therapy, my moods turned into some kind of mania. In all my years of being fucked-up, I'd never really experienced anything like it.

I would be at the shops and suddenly think, oh my God something terrible is going to happen to Max or Rocco I know it I know it AHHHHH. Panic attacks? Maybe. I'd rush to pick them up and couldn't believe my luck that they were ok.

At night, I needed complete silence. Tell all the boys to shut the hell up on a regular basis, worried that they would wake Rocco up. I always feel nervous and a bit scared when Rocco wakes up. Flashbacks? Maybe.

No social outings, no friends, no dinners. Just gardening and chocolate and scrabble. At 2am in the morning because I couldn't sleep. Felt wired and strange.

Had a major meltdown in the carpark of Toys-R-Us. I made both boys cry. I wasn't even angry at them, I vented and raged my frustrations out so inappropriately. As I drove off, a woman was looking after me in shock. I was so embarrassed, I thought the carpark had been empty. There's a woman out there in the world, who thinks I am a terrible mother.

For a while there, I WAS a terrible mother.

Crying for no reason was normal. I'd eat nothing or everything. I knew something was happening that I couldn't ignore any longer, something I'd been resisting for a while now. I needed some kind of anti-anxiety medication. The kind of medication that for ten years, I have heard some people in meetings share about, and silently judge them. Because, you know. WEAK. Just go hardcore!

I've had to eat a lot of humble pie, lately.

I needed weedkiller.

My doctor definitely thought so. It has been a month now. I told my brother about ... a few days in he walked inside and asked how I was.

"Even keel, mate. Even keel!"

I asked him if this was how I *should* have been feeling all these years? Is this how normal people feel? He said no way .... everyone's fucked up to some degree.

I don't know that I agree with medication, but God knows I needed it. It was a big decision, and not one I took lightly. The price to freedom is eternal vigilance .... I need to be wary about taking "a magic pill" that makes everything better.

But, it hasn't made everything better. It does not give me a "buzz" or a "feel-good." The main thing I am aware of is the absence of the intense worry. When I wake up in the middle of the night now, my heart isn't racing at a million beats per second, in terror. I've stopped crying in my car every time I'm alone. Stopped yelling around my kids. Started to be a bit more manageable again.

I don't know how long I will be on them .... perhaps a few months, a bit longer. I think my brain needs some retraining. Maybe?

(Please feel free to email me or leave a comment if you'd like to know more - I have nothing to hide, but it's a tricky subject to navigate. I feel judgemental of myself, for Gods sake.)

I know that nothing will ever kill off that whole kick-arse weed entirely. The weedkiller made it wither and it got cleared away.

It will always be there, under the surface, growing and twisting around.

I'm ready and waiting. I hope the weeds never get so huge and insurmountable again.

Tuesday, 8 December 2009

The Ugliest Photos in the History of the Internet. You're Welcome.

It started off innocently enough ... fooling around in my office with Rocco, snapping some pics.

Then I thought I'd try to take a photo of my new glasses, and write a blog post about What The Glasses Saw, detailing all the things my old glasses saw, and pondering on all the things these new specs will see. Things will happen and I don't know what they are yet.

After about a billion and seventy photos, I still wasn't happy. I know, how about I prop my head on my hand and look all thoughtful?

Nuh. Not happy with any photo. I clicked away. Realised I've worn glasses for 25 YEARS. What's older than a cougar? A mountain lion? A goat? Yeah, I'm that.

Then I realised how white my eyes are, and snapped a mere trillion of those.

Then I made this crazy, kooky face. Because I am such a crazy, kooky person don't you know!

Things quickly degenerated into something quite ugly.

Rocco had been watching me the whole time, and finally got bored and tried to get in on the camera action.

Outta my way baby .... mumma has some more Ugly to do!

Seriously, who does this? What is wrong with me? There's something wrong.
In this shot I look like a fricken serial killer. Eating liver with a fine Chianti.

My nose. MY NOSE. Hey Eden - America called. It wants the Grand Canyon back.

TRUE: On windy days, I feel my nose hairs rustle in the breeze.

I've had a stressful week, trying to not let Christmas swallow me whole like it does every year. Dave is going through something pretty huge right now. I'm here, trying to stay balanced and supportive. Getting a standing ovation from Max's class for the Bart Simpson cake and watching my sisters incedulous face as Rocco tore through her house like a cyclone .... I owe her three cushions, four Christmas decorations, and a round delicate shell ornament that he threw around her house like a "ball".

I need to do stupid things, remind myself that life is just too damn important to be taken seriously.

Tuesday, 1 December 2009

The Goddess is Dancing

That was the bumper sticker on the car in front of us this morning.

"The Goddess is Dancing."

I like it.

After lunch, Dave and I were talking about the next few weekends, so I pulled the calender out - and realised, that today is exactly 21 years since the suicide of my dad.

And I had forgotten about it. This, huge thing that used to rule my entire life. I only remembered it halfway through the day, and didn't even think enough to tell Dave.

It's more than half my life away, now. Twenty-one years ago since I walked my little brother into the toy shop with a wad of cash and told him he could pick anything, anything in the whole shop. And the shopkeeper scoffed and said something about "being spoiled." And I ignored him, because I was still the nice Eden back then. But how I wanted to grab that shopkeeper by the lapels and scream at him that our dad was lying in the fucking morgue. Then pound his head against the counter until blood and brain juice came streaming out.

I looked down into my brothers eyes and they were worried and hollow. Right then I realised that nothing, not any toy I bought him would make one bit of difference.

I remember when I fell pregnant with Max in 2001 .... the doctor told me the due date would be the 1st December. The date I hated most of all - but now, a baby was due to be born on that date. My baby. It was a sign, symbolising the turnaround in my life that I knew could happen if I did the right thing.

I was only 29, and had been busy raising hell. All of the people in my life - even Dave, I suspect .... thought that me becoming pregnant was the worst thing in the world. But I knew I would have the baby, and had this deep inexplicable sense that things would be ok. It was hard to articulate that to people, and they only realised the deep changes in me many months, even years, later.

Max didn't end up coming on the 1st December after all, he came the following day.

If you'll excuse me, I have a Bart Simpson birthday cake to ice.

The Goddess is Dancing.
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