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Published September 22, 2017 by helentastic67

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Home

Is where the heart is, right? My parents built the home I grew up in from the age of about 5. (better first check that)

My bedroom had a window on the side of the house so the only view I had was of a fence. When the men next door worked on their cars in the driveway after hours with the lights on, late into the evening.

The house was built in the 70’s and my parents never did any major renovations, so to this day the kitchen still has its orange (sorry, mum, Mordarine) bench tops, its brown cupboards and orange spaceship lights.

 

70's Kitchen

Space light

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

They seemed to make them to last back then, right? But anyway, I digress, I moved out of home and to Melbourne when I was 19 years old, to study. This is probably when it seemed to be my home. It was a base, sure and my teenager “stuff” remained here, but it wasn’t really my home any longer.

When I was about 23 years old, my parents finally divorced. I say ‘finally’ because from about 12 years old, I knew it was imminent.

In the late 90’s (me in my late 20’s) I lived with my mum and younger sister (then 13) for 2 years, but while her house feels like a home, it doesn’t feel like my home.

It definitely feels like their home and when my dad had a thing for moving “stuff” around inside his house, much of my important childhood “stuff” migrated to my mum’s.

Every rare visit to both my mum’s home and my childhood home brings up different emotional ‘traumas’!

A visit to my mum’s, some 3 ½ hours north from Melbourne, upon arrival, as soon as you open the car door, a whiff of fresh country air, with a subtle pine and burning wood fireplace smell takes me back and refreshes me.

Melb to Wangaratta

I was quite isolated and depressed when I lived there for 2 years.

But my dad’s house, doesn’t feel like a home. Over the 20 years, its felt like the ‘life’ left.

The good furniture is still there, the wall units in dark timber is still there, the timber chest in the billiard room that housed the stamp collection, the roll-timber desk and of course the beautiful pool table. (I call dibs)

Wall unit

Op shop finds have sprung up and taken root (or even stored) for some insane reason, where it’s not needed or used. Dad’s house seems strange, like time stood still, I got bigger, but ironically, when I’ve spent a rare night there as I did last October, when I went to my 25th High School Reunion. Kitchen cupboards, the laundry sliding door, they still sound the same. Like it’s been frozen in time.

My father did move on and found another relationship (weirdly with someone 20 years older) so he has kind of aged in a strange way, if you know what I mean. She has never taken up residence there and they maintain they are ‘friends’, although I suspect he has helped her financially.

Romantically mum never moved on and was busy being a single parent to my younger sister and didn’t make time to meet anybody.

While I’ve moved so many times in the last 25 years, my mum has called me a gypsy. I have desperately wanted my own home, where I never had to move again. A place I could renovate, plant trees in soil and put down roots.

Gypsy

My father in the last 10 years, while I’ve had my disability, has retired, slightly early to deal with bowel cancer, then bladder cancer. He has beaten both, a little worse for wear, but winning all the same and earlier this year he decided to sell his house. Not to downside, but for financial reasons he has upsized.

So, his house sold and the new house is not yet built and he’s renting for maybe 9 months in between. He’s not even renting far from the home I grew up in. He’s moving from 30 to 1/22, I know, insane!

I’m not sure how I am meant to feel about this. It has certainly bought up much emotional trauma for my mum who has clearly felt short changed for the last 25 years, since her divorce. I know, I’ve heard all about it, but while I feel a little sad, I don’t feel like I’m losing anything. If that make sense?

 

New home

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Impulse Control

Published July 7, 2017 by helentastic67

Impulse Control

Impulse Control

So, there are times I’m at a clinic where there is little privacy. Such as my acupuncturist and physio work simultaneously. At times, you zone out, like when you work in an open-air office. You hear someone telling the Physiotherapist explaining the pain someone is experiencing is coming from somewhere completely different. After some massage of the affected area, they are sent on their way and I hear them ask “what if it keeps hurting?” And I hear him say to stop what they are doing. My impulse control proves lacking when I mutter from behind the curtain “more pain” insane!

More pain

Other times, a woman asks the younger physio if he’s going to use needles. He joyfully responds “first we’re going to electrocute you! Then we’re going to stab you!” He does dry needling. She murmurs her reply…

Again, waiting to create some humour, I call out “put me down for some of that.” And they laugh

To be clear, I’ve heard that physio use that line dozens of times and I could help it no longer.

Other times my impulse control is very useful for others present.

In my late 20’s I was sitting in a GP’s clinic waiting room in the country. A mum came in with her son, who was about 6 years old, my mum was there also. The young boy asked his mum a very strange question. “Mum, what’s an Orgasm?”

Out of the mouths of babes

Oh, dear God! She looked so uncomfortable. I raised my hand off my knee in a gesture and met her eyes and offered “I can do that one if you like?” She let me take it, but I’m sure she was holding her breathe, I looked at the boy and said “You know when you’re going to sneeze? And it feels really good, but you’re not sure if you’re going to sneeze? It builds up? Eventually you sneeze and you are relieved?”Snee

Sneezing

The boy looked at me like he understood and he seemed happy.

The mum looked equally relieved.

Kinda felt like I’d had an Atticus Finch moment as I’d explained the sensation without divulging too much. He must have heard the word somewhere. (I don’t know where the 6-year-old kid heard the word Orgasm…)

I’m sure my mum thought I’d not have gotten involved. Sometime, I think my problem with certain thoughts work out better than expected….

Noah the end

Mother

Published June 7, 2017 by helentastic67

Mother

Mother

How’s your mother? I always get asked by my carers… My mum who was here for less than 24 hours, last week to smash some appointments and things.

My mum is really the only family member to support me and she also manages to be my biggest critic.

So, it’s often somewhat tongue in cheek I reply with a smart mouth “she was alive when she left and so was I”.

Smart mouth

My mum and I have come a long way in the last ten years, in the early days of my disability, she was mid 50’s and she would come down often once a week just to take me across town to my physio and OT appointments.

Mum lives about 3 hours away in the country in a lovely isolated valley where there is NO MOBILE RECEPTION and when I go home for Christmas, mum and my younger sister cannot remember their internet password. So, for me THERE IS ALSO NO INTERNET!

No internet

Admittedly their internet is so little and so slow, it’s better to just let emails pile up. I’m less inclined to lose my mental ‘shit’ and want to kill people.

My internet is fast and reliable at home. My mum reminds me every time she visits when she claims “I just detected 400 emails”.

Fast internet

Yeah! She only visits for my fast internet, I don’t mess around with internet or computers when they don’t work, I have visual images of Jackson Pollack paintings. Anyway, I digress as per usual.

It is rather typical of family members when they are carers for people with brain injuries and disabilities to verbally spar with each other.

Most people with brain injuries I’m sure it’s like torture and torment because they lack the verbal skills or mental capacity to give as good as they get.

My mum probably doesn’t realise she should count herself blessed, I have a smart mouth and deliver her a sharp retort at times, despite it offending her. Because the early years I used to bite my tongue until I realised Passive/Aggressive didn’t help me.

Smart mouth 1

Nothing was going to change if I couldn’t let it be known. Clearly, we have had many opportunities for a difference of opinion, on this whole topic.

But what can you do?

Mum 1

 

Hot off the Press – 17th April 2017

Published April 17, 2017 by helentastic67

Happy Easter 1

Happy Easter!

Although I’m tapping this out on Sunday night in Melbourne, OZ. And this will go live Monday. Hopefully.

Easter always seems to be an excuse or a reason for families to get together. I live in the middle of my family. Definitely closer to part of my family but as I have no direct family of my own ie. Children/significant other(husband) I still consider my actual family to be my 2 parents and 2 siblings. One older the other much younger. I’ve not seen or heard from any of my family on Easter.
Wait! Mum just rang. It’s nearly 11pm! We spoke for over half an hour, and when I say that I mean my mum talked mostly and I listened.

on phone

Has been a really weird weekend. I normally pack my week with all the ‘busy things’ so I can go off-grid on Saturday and not do much more than eat, sleep, catch up on TV shows and cups of T(tea) and this plan was largely thrown by the fact that Good Friday was a public holiday and the day I have a carer to taken shopping, I could not go.

shopping 1

My carer was open to my asking me out for a few hours on Saturday, so very grateful I’m going to be contacting the office on Tuesday to make sure she is paid for the 2 extra hours she gave up of her weekend.

But after returning home around 4pm on Saturday, I still put all of my groceries and purchases away, took the tags off some new tops to wear around the house, I made a béchamel sauce and threw together a pasta bake for a friend who moved house this weekend. Ergo! Hate moving house! I finally made my own standard Saturday lunch and ate around 6pm.

Standout TV show this weekend I highly recommend is called Taboo. Sometimes, I see adverts or a mention somewhere and if a show looks good I add it to a Dream List. When I eventually start to watch it, maybe a year or 2 has passed and I can’t recall what made me add it to the list but I’ll give you 2 words. Tom Hardy. At first, he looked familiar and after a search on the google machine. There is plenty he has been in I’ve seen. Taboo itself is an odd little mystery, slowly peeled back to reveal much in only 8 episodes. Short and sweet, sometimes how I like it.

Taboo

Anyway, managed to read 2 comics since last week and still 5 years behind. But still noteworthy. Hope you had a lovely Easter, I guess I should get. My 2 Lindt bunnies out of the fridge. They have been in the fridge since I bought them 2 months ago. It will take me the rest of the year to chip away at them, even the hazelnut one.

lindt-deaf-bunny

Family

Published February 23, 2017 by helentastic67

family-1

Family

I’m yet to unpack and draw a picture about my family and I’m getting there but things come up all the time so……

My Mum is my biggest supporter and occasionally my biggest critic, but Truly Ruely.

My Mum has been the only family who has been there when I’ve been in hospital and there is nothing worse than having my Mum look down at me with that look I recognise as “Oh my God Don’t let me watch another of my children die!”

sad-mum

And to be clear she gave me this look after my Disc bulge surgery. The nurse came in and felt she needed to remind me I could sue the morphine button. And the look my mum was giving me, having just seen my scar (covered in tape) and to let Mum know I was okay. I gave her the acronym STFU! The nurse looked started and my only interest was when I was allowed up to go pee. It was three days, I think! Three fucking days! I’m just saying. This once; THEY DON’T MAKE BEDPANS FOR WOMEN!

But more about my family soon.

family-2

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