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Chris is beautiful. Sprocket is also beautiful, but he's not quite whole yet, so there is 1.9 of them.

On Wednesday, should he be born, he would be considered at term, so maybe I should start calling them my beautiful 2. This is the one time in life when a person can be singular and plural at the same time. The mind boggles.

Chris has been slowed. It's that extra .9 of a person doing it. She is warm, soft and rotund. Sometimes when I hold her I get the very strong impression that I'm holding the baby too. Sometimes he takes the time to remind me of that very fact. Sometimes I wonder if he's trying to hold me too. I hope he knows he is loved.

I am both terrified and impatient to meet him. To be able to hold him myself, so he can demand I return him to his mother ASAP.

It's still all to come....

And i'm sure i'll keep doing more of this style of posting before it does.


Jul. 18th, 2011 09:21 am
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I'm not sure if things are going really quickly or dragging just at the moment. I've been on uni holidays, so I've had a relative surplus of free time. I've spent the free time fixing things around the house, working extra shifts where I can and generally trying not to think about teaching. I've also read a book or 2 and played a lot of The Sims 3....

This sense of time struck me last week when I was talking to a colleague in the library who I hadn't seen for a while. She asked how Chris was. I told her where we were at and how things were going. She remarked that pregnancy seems to take ages, and it felt like the baby should already be here. I guess for a work colleague I see only once a week or so, it must seem that way. Mum also always guesses we're about 4 weeks ahead of where we actually are. So it's an odd place to be in right now. Chris is about 6.5 months along. There's 10 weeks or so left till the early due date, or 12 or so weeks till the later one (yay for ambiguous scans!). So basically by the end of my next series of teaching rounds I'll come home, and the baby will be 1 or 2 weeks away. Scary shit.

So is it dragging or is it flying past? I actually can't say..... It seems to be doing both at the same time. Maybe it's the uni holidays making time feel like it's running a little slower, for me at least. There just seems to be less of a sense of urgency about things at the moment. I'm sure this sense is all the stronger for [personal profile] mstakenidentity as the one going through the physical changes. Sprocket's growing. A lot. He's also dancing around a lot. While I know that [personal profile] mstakenidentity takes joy in both these facts, I understand it's making life less than comfortable, which probably contributes to making time drag. Oh, and then there's the lack of sleep from discomfort and bathroom visits that she gets as a special bonus. When she finishes work in a month or so, things will probably slow right down for her....

We've also done most of the running around for baby preparations. Or at least I think we have. Maybe. Kinda.... We'll find out in a couple of months I suppose, but we're no longer hunting for lots of things. We've got things for Sprocket to sleep in, things for Sprocket to wear, things to catch Sprocket's poo, things to transport and carry Sprocket places, things to wrap Sprocket up in, things to clean Sprocket up, spares of most things for when Sprocket covers whatever he's wearing in vomit and so on and so on.... So there's less urgency about that side of things.

So yes, I suppose there's a lull in activity for us. Not so much for Sprocket himself though. He's going bananas. And I imagine in the next few weeks [personal profile] mstakenidentity will start to feel like this whole pregnancy thing has gone on long enough.....

We start some classes soon. July 26th is our first session, then they happen weekly after that for 3 weeks. Appointments with midwives are getting more frequent. I have a feeling time will start to speed up again really soon...
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[personal profile] mstakenidentity hit 20 weeks over the weekend. For perspective that means there is less time left in the "pregnancy schedule" than has now passed. October 8 looms large in our lives. We found out sprocket is a boy last week. We also found out many more facts about our son that are much more important. He has 2 arms and 2 legs, there are 5 digits on each of his hands and feet. He has a properly formed stomach and bladder. 2 kidneys. A heart that isn't leaking and is pumping fluid like it us supposed to. A tiny tiny brain that is taking shape. He also has a nose.

Time is flying by. Chris is showing more every day. She looks beautiful. She's tired a lot. She's hungry frequently. She can feel sprocket fluttering about, before the outside world gets the chance to.

I find it hard to concentrate on other things in life right now.... Uni is boring. School is challenging, but even it still seems like a petty distraction from the real business of living at the moment. In 3 weeks semester is over. I'm going to put the cot together. And the bassinet. We're going to get the carpets at the house cleaned, and the study will start to convert to a nursery.

The hardest thing about all this is that in August I'm doing a teaching placement in the country. I think I can still make all the birthing classes. I worry about not being around for those 4 weeks. I worry about what I might miss. I worry that we made the wrong decision several weeks ago when I confirmed my commitment to the rural placement program.... But just because the short term is pressing, the long term doesn't disappear. The experience will be invaluable, and may effect our future profoundly.

So yes. It looms large. Larger with each passing day. I remain excited, overjoyed and terrified. And, from what they say, the real challenges are yet to come.
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Last time I posted about this I went over a range of feelings the ever more impending Sprocket has stirred deep within me. And now, about 1 month on, the feelings have not subsided, they have not normalised and they have not reduced in depth or intensity. In fact the opposite is true.

Conditions have altered a bit. Chris is now definitely showing. The nausea seems to have settled down (touch wood) and in general things are more in a routine. But that haze of anxiety and euphoria continue to envelope my world. I can't just describe it as 'anticipation' - doesn't do it justice.... I'm never not thinking about sprocket. I imagine that's the way it goes from here on in.

We are accumulating things. A fair few of them. Many of them we've now owned for some time. A pram. A Cot. A bundle of cloth nappies. A bath. A High Chair. It's sitting behind me as I type this starkly glaring at me. The pile is silently judging my capacity and readiness to take on what is to come. I'LL SHOW YOU PILE OF STUFF! MARK MY WORDS!

Another odd thing of note, just a bizarre observation really... pregnant bellies are harder than I thought. Of course that makes sense, but it actually surprises me for some reason.

I am trying to take care of Chris through this time. I actually find myself more in love with her each passing day. Her back is sometimes sore. She gets tired. She has odd eating habits. But that's part of how it works I suppose. It'll get worse before it gets better...

I get to see Sprocket on Monday. Monday will be good. We can even get a DVD of the scan.....
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So, Chris is now 15 weeks along this apparently 40 or so week journey. It's both going fast and slow at the same time. It's joyous, exciting confronting, terrifying and at times heart-wrenching all at once.

There are a bunch of guide-books out there for dads to be. I've been avoiding them mostly because they will say things like "So, you've gotten her pregnant, well no more strip-clubs for you then!", or "Time to give up on restoring that Holden out the back" or some such crap.

So here's my attempt to use words to give an honest appraisal of the experience so far:

It's hard. It's kind of bewildering and it can feel like you're blundering around in a haze that's a mix of anxiety and euphoria. You have no idea what's going on most of the time, and all you know is that the person you care about most in the world is on a journey you can never truly understand.

But, truth be told, your partner's probably not got that much more of an idea of what's going on than you do. They're just in the unfortunate position of having to deal with all the changes from the inside while you run off to get chocolate milk, open doors, carry things and try your darndest to make yourself useful because you know you can't really bring them any real relief from what they're going through.

That's the hardest bit. Feeling useless. Knowing that if there's pain, you can't relieve it. You can't even comprehend it. You're a passenger on this ride. She is too when you think about it, but at least she's sitting in front seat.

In my heart of hearts, I'm loving it. Granted, I'm am a slightly insane paternal cluck-monster. It is a beautiful thing, nonetheless. In spite of the vomiting, in spite of the pains, in spite of the tears it's beautiful. It's beautiful the way you watch your partners abdomen with a kind of bizarre impatience as you wait for it to "pop". It's beautiful when you see the 12 week old foetus dance around inside your partner as it tries to get comfortable. Seeing a picture so clear that you can make out a tiny brain forming, a brain that will one day have all the capacities and complexities of yours, probably to a greater degree. It's beautiful taking the time to think about what it is and what it means. It's beautiful hearing the excitement in the voices of future grandparents. And it's beautiful standing awe-struck by your partner and what she and her body are working on.

Anyway I'm out of words. Words stop working in the face of experiences that are too massive. I wish dad was here sometimes. But he isn't. So I give him the news in my dreams.
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I have had a splendid weekend.

Utterly splendid.

We had a night at the Langham Hotel on Southbank (with a random upgrade from a Club Room to the Corner Spa Suite). Saw Thyestes (brilliant piece of theatre, not event appropriate, but still brilliant theatre (more on this in a later post... but have a quick look here for an idea:

So yes, fun, frivolity and opulence.

Very spoilt, and very lucky.

I'll see many of you Friday!
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  • Hot Poppy Breakfast
  • Watch DVDs and fold programs
  • Go check on the bowls club
  • Wait for florist to drop off button holes at home
  • Get married
  • Take photos
  • Get a rickshaw to the bowls club
  • Dance, eat and be merry
  • Go to the Hilton at Melbourne Airport

Today Good!!!
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Our wedding rings arrived today.

That is all.


Mar. 16th, 2010 10:21 pm
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It is done )
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For Chris' Birthday I'm taking her here .

I've been looking for an excuse to try the joint out, so yeah....

She doesn't know, and is flocked from this. She'll find out tonight.

EDIT: Unlocking now, because the birthday is done!

It was fantastic, highly recommended.
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I haven't blogged at length about the fun weekend that was the weekend away of awesome....

So here it is in a nutshell:

Friday: Get crap together and get in the car!

In the car, driving, Chris says "look in the glove box" and I do, and I find out the details of the plans she has made for the weekend. I'm going to the Grampians. A place I haven't been to since I was about 16, and a place that I still go on about as one of my favourite places.

Chris does all the driving up, we have a wonderful time, I get to admire the scenery. We stop for lunch at The Vines in Arrarat (eat here if you're in Arrarat, it's amazing and surprising at the same time!). Afterwards we stocked up in Arrarat (closest , and discovered that Aldi now shares wheelchairs....

We proceed to this little idyllic little nook tucked away in Pomonal at the foot of the Grampians:

The website is an accurate description of what you get there. It is opulent, highly civilised, luxurious, close to nature and miles from anywhere all at the same time. An amazing, private retreat with a comfy bed, wood fire, spa bath and lots of yum!. At the same time the property is a wildlife sanctuary. Plenty of birds, a mob of roos (or two) and a mob of emus (collective nouns are correct!).

We enjoyed the facilities immensely, spa bath every night, fire going and movies for after dark. It was cosy, and at the same time in the middle of rolling green hills at one side, and sheer granite rockfaces on the other.

There was a plan for minigolf, but we didn't end up going due to rain. Instead we had a spa bath with champagne and chocolates on the first night! Magical. Magical....

After a good nights sleep, we went to Seppelt Great Western to see a unique bit of cellaring. The winery has been built in a gold rush town. The gold rush apparently lasted about 5 seconds. The winery thought "lets use the out of work miners to get them to dig us some underground cellars", and so the winery has about 3 km (I think that was the figure) of tunnels about 15m under ground in the winery. Turns out they do weddings at the winery, and underground dinner functions as part of the touristy stuff they do. There are also some spots down there where a few public notables have a private collection stored down there. We had a tasting at the end of it all, bought a few bottles and then drove back towards the grampians.

Lunch was at the Brambuk Cultural centre for a look-in and lunch. We had the bush foods tasting platter and liked it so much we bought a stack of sauces and condiments by "outback Kitchen".

Next stop: The Gap winery in Halls Gap where we were treated to a cheese platter and we chilled with a glass of very good desert reisling! The lady at the cellar door there was super friendly, very knowledgeable and gladly sold us some wine! It was lovely. Rain was intermittent while we sat inside and supped on fine dainty dishes.

We went home and got dressed up for my birthday dinner at The Quarry in Halls Gap. It was very nice! I had a pile 'o' meat, and a slice of cheesecake! We were highly classy individuals.

Then we went home and had (you guessed it) a spa!!!! And then sleep.

The next day was our last full day up there, so we went to the zoo! Decked out with a picnic hamper and a desire to see aminals (as Chris called them) we tropped off down the road to the Halls Gap Zoo where we saw many things. Highlights inclduing: monkeys, psychotic (or speed-addict) marsupials in the nocturnal exhibit, kangaroos that were tame enough to feed, deer, wombats!!!! and tiny horses.

We ate our picnic (good lord there was a lot of it!). And turned home, going via a small lavender farm nearby (we bought condiments), and an olive patch that was also nearby and sold olive oils - which we also purchased (I think we helped sustain the local economy while we were there).

Then we went home, watched 2 movies, drank a bunch of the wine and went to bed! We forgot the spa because we were a bit tipsy....

We woke at a ridiculous hour that night and observed that the sky was clear! So we got a glimpse of the heavens in the country, and it was amazing.

On our last day (Monday) we arose, and finally got our chance to go play mini-golf on the way home. So we tidied and packed, bid a fond farewell to Baroka Downs (it was a lovely way to spend a weekend - really it rocked. Worth every penny. To Chris. She shouted me the whole weekend).

Mini-golf was fun! There were 2 important issues with it though:

The course was confusing - we skipped 2 holes by mistake, but went back to play them without any problem...
The course was slippery - Chris fell down 3 times.

The second issue was more of an issue than the first...

So we survived mini golf!

And then went home, via Dunkeld and ate at the Royal Mail Hotel. Brilliant dining! Really really wonderful. Pigeon Pie! I hate pigeons, so I'm glad I got to eat a few of them.

And then it was onwards to Melbourne via Ballarat.

We got home, greeted the kittens (thanks Penelope for seeing to them!), and was relaxed, revitalised and spoiled rotten.

I was speaking to dad about it later on and his first question when he found out it was the grampians was 'did you go rock climbing?'

I coyly answered 'it wasn't that kind of holiday dad....'

It is done

Jul. 17th, 2009 05:22 pm
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it is now where it belongs )
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This is it.... )
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Somewhere in a workshop in Adelaide.... )
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Ring design


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