Today

Inigo decided a while ago that when he goes to university, he will study music, so he can be a singer.

Today, after I explained what the army is, and why they exist, he found out how comes the world is. I explained that there are people who think about complex problems all the time, who try to work out right from wrong, and who try to define grey areas.

He has changed his plan. Now, he wants to study music, and philosophy.

Today I had the pleasure, and the great privilege of uniting two dear friends in marriage. I was booked for this wedding about 4 years ago, just after I became a celebrant, and this has been my longest “engagement”, and I am thrilled to have finally sealed the deal. Congratulations guys, I wish you many more happy years together :)

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I take it all back

I was rather pissed off at my unit convener for knocking back my application for special consideration for last semester, but after talking with a psychologist from campus well-being, I feel much better about the decision. Apparently, you no longer get bumped up a few marks, all you get is the opportunity to sit another exam – which in my case was the last thing I wanted. And getting 78% for the unit as a whole was a great result, especially since the way Macquarie works out GPA is to give 1 point for a CP* (will have to look up what this means), 2 points for a pass, 3 for a credit, and 4 for a distinction or a high distinction. So a distinction is every bit as good as a high distinction in terms of keeping my GPA high (which I need to do to transfer into Psych, and to be admitted to honours).

Secondly, I talked to her about how high my stress levels are this semester (I have already gained back 2 of the 10 kilos I lost while I was sick), and how seeing formulae on the lecture slides makes me feel like crying, and I have been diagnosed as having perfectionist tendencies that go a little beyond what is strictly considered adaptive. She has offered me counseling, and (hooray!) a free tutor for 2 hours a week to help me get through this unit.

Tutoring is reliant on there being one available, so I have to keep everything crossed, but I am feeling a lot better about the switch to MQ after that meeting.

*Apparently a CP is just like a fail, but they recognise that you were pretty close to a pass, and they let you through.

School Transition

I’m afraid this is going to be another one of those “I can’t believe how awesome my kid is, and I feel compelled to share him with the world” posts.

Last Friday we started transition to school. I say we, because one of the learning outcomes is a parent that doesn’t sob at the school gates on the first day of real school next year. And we all know I am in grave danger of that!

We convened in an adjacent room, and when everyone was ready, we walked together into the classroom. Inigo took off ahead of me, full of confidence, but at the door he turned around to wait for me and grab my hand. We walked in together, and a teacher greeted him and asked him to sit on a mat in the front of the classroom. Reluctantly, he let go of my hand after I assured him I wasn’t leaving.

The teachers had a laminated card with a picture of each child, and their name printed on another card. Each child in turn had to identify his or her picture and name, and then stick them on the wall so everyone could see. Inigo waited his turn, but quickly scanned the field so that he could be the fastest when it came to his turn. When his name was called, he was so eager and speedy that all the mums had a chuckle, clearly this was a kid that is ready to stretch his wings in an academic environment.

After that the parents had to go next door for our own lesson, and we left the kids to their own devices. After an hour or so I snuck back in to take a picture (you HAVE to take a picture of a kids first day of school!).

This program runs for 4 weeks with kids who are going to a variety of schools in the area. After this program the school runs another one, and after that there is another one we can choose to do – all up, it is 17 weeks of school prep, running from now until the end of the year. Hopefully, we’ll both be ready by then!

Two years down

Tomorrow marks two years since my waters broke, and my worldview shifted. Two years since I stopped believing in karma, and fairness, and balance. Two years since I stopped taking what I had for granted, and started to live with fear and hope, and after that, with loss.

And I am OK. Really, truly, OK.

Life will never be the same. I will never be the same person. But that is OK too. Little Aubrey Michael, who never drew breath will always be a part of my heart, and his “big” brother Archimedes Hare, who worked so hard to stay with us, and Inigo George, who never had his chance to be a big brother – each of these boys has shaped the person I have become, and because of each of them, I am different.

Loss has certainly shaped me, and though I am marked by this, I am not defined by it. As I look at my life today, my opportunities and my blessings, I feel like the grief is flaking away, and recollections of my twins begin to have positive associations.

Resilience is a trait I have never seen much of in myself. Stubbornness, yes, but the true ability to bounce back after a low kick hasn’t been a strong point of mine. Now, I can look at where I have been, and where I am, and where I am going, and I cannot explain the change without attributing it to developing a true bounce.

Of course I regret that my babies aren’t here now, smearing yoghurt on the furniture and waking me at 2am for a breastfeed. And I would never have chosen this outcome in a million years. But this is the hand I have been dealt, and I am pleased and amazed, and proud to say that right now, I am dealing with it.