Saturday, March 27, 2010


I love the suburb where I live. It's an interesting mix of housing, from waterfront mansions to state rentals, and is truly multicultural. There are bush trails for walking or biking, a huge park with an exercise machine circuit, access to the water at high tide. It's beautiful. I love that I can walk on a Sunday and hear the different songs in various languages from the churches, and see the families all dressed up in their various Sunday best. That I can wander through the park and see people with their dogs, groups of teens having a game of soccer or touch rugby, older folks sitting on the benches in the sun - all shapes, ages, colour and sizes.

There is a darker side though - a couple of streets away is a known drug house. I've walked past there many times and watched cars arriving for their purchases. And just along the walkway is a street that is my "loop track" when I walk - out of our house, down the coastal walkway, up this particular street and then back down into our road. And from one of the houses on this street a 2 year old has been injured so terribly that she is in critical condition in hospital, with a man charged with assault and more charges likely.

This is a house I know. I've walked past it probably hundreds of times. I think I have even seen the little girl who has been hurt. And she will probably die, or live with severe brain damage. I cannot comprehend who would do this to a child. I just can't. It breaks my heart that in my community, my own neighbourhood, this could happen.

Grace is ten weeks old today. As I hold her and look at her perfection, her wee smiles and her funny expressions, I just cannot imagine hurting her. Yesterday, she had awful wind pain. She screamed and cried for what seemed like ages. I walked her and rocked her and fed her and even had a few tears myself. And I could understand how in frustration someone could shake a baby, if they were exhausted and under other stresses. But there are so many options available - call Plunket, call a friend, put the baby in a safe place and go take a shower or a break.

I don't know what the answer is - I know that it does take a village sometimes to raise a child, and maybe it takes a village to keep a child safe. Maybe it just takes us all keeping our eyes open and not being too scared to offer a hand if someone is under stress, or calling the authorities if we see anything. We can't keep hurting and killing our children.

Grace is growing amazingly - each day she feels a little heavier - I am certainly getting my upper body workout! She has developed a very mischievous smile accompanied by a sideways look - it cracks us up, but makes us worry about what kind of child we will be raising! Each day there seems to be new levels of alertness and play - it's so wonderful to watch. Mostly she is very very good and easy, but we do get the evening grizzlies, or she will wake up with wind pain crying and yelling her head off! Who knew a wee thing could make so much noise! Still, we are getting there, and after a very good night she has just gone down for her morning nap with the minimum of fuss so today might be a good day :-)

Rupert is off doing the Motatapu Rangitoto Island marathon, so it's a quiet day for Grace and I - I have some work to catch up on in preparation for financial year end next week, so it is time to get moving on that!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Two Months Today!

Our wee girl is not so wee anymore! Two months old today and at her Plunket check up yesterday she was 5.03 kgs, and 56cm long. I hadn't realised how much she had grown until I held a friend's newborn boy on Sunday! It was fun going back to the hospital to see the cute new arrival - and to see our midwives who were so helpful when we were there.
She really is just a lovely girl. We have our times of crying like everyone, but more and more we are able to settle her or at least work out what she wants! It was a busy week, a photographer friend came over to take some family shots which should be nice, and we went to dinner at another friend's place on Saturday night, as well as having the neighbours come down here on Friday night for shared fish and chips :-)
Lots of smiles now, and "chatting" away to me when she is in the mood. She's still feeding really well and the nurse said her eye tracking was very good and her neck strength was coming along nicely.
I've been a little tired over this last week - I think the days are so quiet when we are on our own that when Rupert gets home sometimes the bustle overwhelms me - the dogs are excited to see him, then he makes dinner and often Grace is doing her grizzlies, so it can become a little noisy and stressful. Rupert, bless his heart, is ever forgiving and understanding and he is so good with her.- I really have a star husband.
In addition to all that, our cat Dream has had surgery for an abcess on her face so she ended up sleeping downstairs - this is a cat who does not like to be inside! She is fine though and in a few more days can resume her normal post on the sheepskin at the back door!
I must admit it's nice now that it is cooler - for one thing I get to dress Grace in some of her beautiful clothes, and we both sleep a little better at night! So...two months down already and life is pretty darn good!

Sunday, March 07, 2010

The Blogosphere

Over the years, blogging has been a lifeline for me. Not only in writing my own blog but in following the blogs of other women going through the same, or similar life experiences. There were blogs I read that "everyone" read - like, or And then there were the blogs I found where women wrote honestly and openly about their issues. Some of those women became friends - I may never meet them, or talk to them on the phone, but we have shared something of ourselves with each other and that creates a bond that is intense. I can imagine sitting down for coffee with any one of these women and not running out of things to talk about.

There is Eden, the incredibly brave, honest and funny blogger in Australia - who makes me laugh and cry in equal amounts. She and I had the longest game of Facebook scrabble! Eden has been through more than anyone I know - and yet manages to come out smiling (and swearing)!

Then there is Faith, who was blessed with the most gorgeous twins over two years ago. She and I originally met on a newsgroup and stayed in touch - it's been a joy to watch her boys grow up if only on line! She's always been there with an email or a comment through my bad news - and my good!

And then there is one of my earliest "blog mates" - Mony in Aussie. She has a wee boy - actually not so wee anymore - named Cooper and he is adorable. I've followed her journey with so much interest - and I am pretty sure I wasn't the only blog reader to cry when she announced her pregnancy. So, hearing from Mony today (while I had been thinking about what to blog about this week) and her telling me that she had made the quilt pictured for my wee Grace - well! What a gift! Thank you Mony xx! It is just gorgeous and with the cooler days arriving soon it will be perfect for her buggy!
I'd post a picture of Grace today but she has her milk spots. Ha! She's still darn cute though.
Highlights this week - her smiling at herself in the mirror, graduating to infant nappies and then being demoted back to newborn when we realised the infant size leaked, lots of snuggles and cuddles and good feeding. Lowlights - taking her out for the afternoon yesterday and ending up with a very overtired wee girl - she's still sleeping it off! And two days without a poo - this from a girl who normally poos at least five times a day. Apparently it's normal for them at this age - I'm just dreading the arrival of what must be a poo to exceed all those that have gone before! The week was spent working on getting her in a routine - wow, the first few days were hard. But she is doing so much better, and I think she is happier for it - certainly more settled anyway.
So - to my blogging buddies - thank you! There were times when I thought I would never be in the same club as each of you - we truly were the lucky and blessed ones.
Note - to those of you who are still trying - I am SO sorry. I would do anything I could to help you - I know how it is to be the one left behind. I never thought my dream would come true. I hope yours does one day, in whatever form that has to take. PLEASE forgive me if any of my posts hurt you. Love and hugs, and never give up xx

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