Word For Wednesday (W4W) #60


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Play here!

This week’s word is:

Family.

Didn’t Phil know what he was talking about? Never has there been a truer poem in the history of all poetry! IMHO!

I also second my mate Leo’s take on family…

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When we were younger, my sister and I used to lament the fact that our family was so unlike the Cosby Show, who seemed to personify all things ideal when it came to family life. (Given recent revelations, I have reconsidered Dr. Huxtable’s appeal as a father figure…)

A clear early family memory came back to me last week, whilst watching Stewart Lee’s excellent Comedy Vehicle on BBC, on the topic of Death. He spoke about how the first time a child encounters death is often the demise of a beloved family pet and it triggered this recollection for me –

I am not sure how old I was, I would hazard a guess at between 4-6 and my father, a plasterer by trade, came home from work one day with a round Blue Ribband margarine tub in his hands, saying he had a surprise for me. I was excited. He opened the tub and inside was the tiniest, cutest little mouse, (perhaps a wee baby or a door-mouse, I am not sure). Thinking he was giving me a pet, I clapped my hands and positively jumped for joy, delighted.

Was I wrong????

He had actually brought it home as a toy for our two Jack Russell Terriers to ‘play with’ and was simply  letting me have a look before setting the poor doomed creature free into our back yard.

Cruel? Twisted? Sick?

Obviously this little mouse was not a beloved family pet, but for a few joyous minutes I thought s/he might be.

Add to the story the fact that my mother was standing next to me, cooking dinner. She had a terrible phobia of mice and I remember her saying his name and pleading with him to take the creature away from her.

I have no clue why I chose to share this story today… it’s bleak, dark and downright fucking weird!

But hey… today my family is the OH and my two furry little girls, who love me more than I could ever have hoped for, along with a collection of nephews and nieces that make my heart sing with joy and love.

Family is what you make it…

💋

Copyright, 2016, k1kat.com

All rights reserved.

Gratitude


I am aware that my blogs appeal to quite different audiences, but I cannot decide where today’s entry should live… so I am posting it to both blogs.


The OH left for work this morning very tired and not in the best of health. But he went in to his office with a smile and hugs and kisses for the girls and myself.

His job is incredibly demanding and very, very stressful, (hence the recurrent bad health). He works with people who, and I am being generous when I say this, are less than cooperative and pleasant to be around. He works tirelessly every day, with very little recognition or support, and comes home to us three loony girls and whatever chaos is waiting for him here.

He is never too busy for us. His motto in life is, and has been since the day I met him, “there is always time for a hug”. I know, without doubt, that I am his top priority. I can call on him anytime for anything and he will deliver. Yes, I scold him for spending too much time playing games on his phone, but when the shit hits the fan he is there. Always.

I truly think I got the better end of the deal in this relationship. I have no idea how he puts up with me. He endures my endless chatter, my anxieties, my depressive dark thoughts, my hormonal moods. He laughs with me when I am silly and playful, he joins in singing in the car, he dances with me in the kitchen. He is generous, with his time and with material things. He is kind, funny and, (*although he does get it wrong sometimes), he always does his best.

I never feel I do enough to support him or show him how much he means to me. I do my best to make sure he comes home to a loving and happy home. When we hear him come in through the door every evening the girls and I literally run to greet him and I love to see how happy that makes him.

I take care of all the domestic tasks so that once he gets home he can relax and unwind, (ok, ok, he does take care of the bins!). I listen when he has a gripe or dilemma about work and try to help him work it out. I take great pride and pleasure in cooking his meals, making sure his shirts are washed and ironed, making good healthy lunches for him to take into work. It feels the very least I can do.

And yet I do not think I do enough. How can I?

As well as working so hard to keep us fed, watered and sheltered, he relieves me of the burden of things I find too stressful to deal with. He takes care of all the nasty financial jobs such as finding the best deals in insurance, utilities and general admin. I take an incredibly ‘ostrich with her head in the sand’ approach to such matters. I can hear my feminist sisters screaming at me now that I need to be more in control of these things. I know that if anything happened to him I would be very vulnerable and quite helpless. He is the grown up and I am the silly kid.

I felt the need to write this today to let him know that each and every little thing he does for me and our family is appreciated. I wanted to tell him, very publicly, how much I love him and how grateful I am to have met him all those years ago.

For the record, (and before you all throw up as a result of my sentimentality today), we have not always been happy. We had some very difficult times, and there were even points where we weren’t sure we would make it. But at the end of the day, neither of us could imagine life without our best friend.

I believe in soul mates… why? Because I met mine 25 years ago.

💋

Copyright, 2016, k1kat.com

All rights reserved.

*randomly pointing out that Lily has a shorter life expectancy than me, causing me to tear up was not your best moment babe…

Love Yourself Challenge #19


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I have a lovely memory of a day during last summer when my sister in law visited with her hubby and her three adorable kids.

We all sat out in the sunshine on the patio and, as the ‘adults’ chatted, my nephews, niece and I had a wonderful time.

The oldest nephew was 7 at the time and fascinated by all things science and geographical. We had an overdue birthday gift for him – a light up globe and some books about geography to accompany it. He spent the day taking me on an epic journey all over the world as I quizzed him on where different countries were, before we moved on to explore the books. He read parts aloud for me, his little blue eyes wide with excitement, while the younger nephew spun the globe and called every single landmass Brazil. My beautiful niece, with her long flaxen hair and enormous blue eyes, danced around the patio singing to herself and swinging out of the parasol pole like the world’s cutest little pole dancer.

I was enchanted and amazed by these three tiny humans and think I certainly got the better deal that day than the OH, sis in law and her hubs, who talked the usual adult stuff and missed out on the magic that was happening right next to them.

It is a wonderful memory to have, for me and I hope for them too;  the day we spent playing, chatting and laughing together. I love those kids to death!

Ciao!

💋

Copyright, 2016, k1kat.com

All rights reserved.

The Old Black Dog


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My friend Busty, (we haven’t known each other very long at all, but, given the support and kindness she has offered me, I think I can safely call her a friend), pinned this link on Pinterest and I found it this morning. It really does explain depression very well; how it impacts our lives on all levels – the psychological, mental, social and physical.

I have been struggling on and off for a while now, finding I am having more bad days than good, although on the good days I do feel genuinely happy and okay. But the bad days… when that bastard Black Dog comes and sits with me… I hate those days.

I have noticed several of my online friends are also having a difficult time. I know some of the reasons behind this, but I wonder if the season we are in is a factor too. I know I really did feel a dip in my mood as the light changed and the evenings seemed to arrive earlier and earlier.

Without my realising it, it was that time of year where everyone was talking about Xmas and I hadn’t even noticed it creep up on me. I do not have children, (discounting the OH and dogs of course), and I do not have any religious faith, so for me December 25th really is just another day. I resent feeling that I must “join in” in what, to me, is a man-made, socially constructed consumerist farce.

I am off to visit my family on Saturday and that brings with it its very own tailored-made gift of stress and anxiety. If it wasn’t for my nieces and nephews whom I adore, I can honestly say I would fake illness to avoid it. (Funny how I don’t feel able to use my depression/anxiety, which is a genuine illness, as a valid excuse!)

I won’t go into the reasons I find this visit stressful. God forbid they find this blog and read them! (Ha! Another gloriously Irish family trait… the horror of actually having a frank conversation about how our families make us feel!)

After spending yesterday in a heap on the sofa, watching hours of crappy TV, finally dragging myself into the shower at 4.30pm, this morning I forced myself to eat and shower and I sit writing now at 10am, make up on, hair done. I have a hair appointment this afternoon to cover the dreaded roots, (again, must keep up appearances right?). In all honesty, it’d be so easy to cancel it and lie on the sofa again but I MUST do this.

It’s the little things, the small acts of self-care that count and add up. The idea of sitting in front of a mirror for an hour and a half leaves me feeling nauseous, having to look at my chubby face, eye circles and lines. But I tell myself that the result, shiny, glossy fresh hair, will lift me. I don’t know if it will… but I hope it does. At least I won’t have to face them all with grey roots as well as a frame wider than the last time they saw me.

So, today I am going to try. I really, really do not feel like it, but it is necessary.

If you are struggling, I hope you can make yourself do one small nice thing for yourself today. One act of self-care.

If you know someone who is struggling, please don’t pressure them, just be there.

That is all you need to do, just be there.

With love,

💋

 Copyright, 2015, k1kat.com

All rights reserved.