Grip

Grip

Even though I knew it was a bit of naive cliche, I did expect to be completely head over heels in love with my daughter from the moment I saw her. In reality, I was just relieved; so very relieved and so very tired. I hadn’t slept in almost 60 hours by the time she was born, and although the labour had gone well,I was deliriously tired. The first few weeks were such a blur; an intense, beautiful, challenging blur. We brought a little bundle home, and were immediately hit…

Us

Us

I had expected that after the birth of my daughter, I would miss ‘me’. My independence, my body, my time, my sleep. In fact, I missed what I missed more was us; my husband and I. Our time together, our independence as a couple.  It felt like we were floating adrift from each other; two kayaks tied together, floating along and occasionally knocking into each other.  Becoming ‘us’ had seemed quite easy. I guess the beginning always is easy. There were pub dates and meals we cooked at our respective…

Mother

Mother

When my daughter was five days old, my mother arrived to help us. I naively had thought we wouldn’t need help in the first days home. I was wrong. I called my mother in tears the second night we were home with our daughter.  On the day my mother turned up at my house, I cried on her shoulder and said “I love you so much and one day you won’t be here.” I had been a mother myself for less than a week and I could not bear the…

The Last Summer

The Last Summer

I have many happy childhood memories spent at the local swimming pool. It was a large but simple complex, where I spent school swimming days and had swimming lessons in summer’s evenings. Occasionally we’d have a barbecue dinner with another family at the pools; my parents passing out plastic plates and opening bags of crisps. I thought of those summer evenings of my childhood over this last summer; my last summer before becoming a parent.  My third trimester of my pregnancy spanned the summer. The days grew hotter and then…

Heartbeat

Heartbeat

Heartbeat The morning we first saw you, the little flicker of you, started as rainy and wet. It was the first day of Spring, although it still felt very wintry.  Your daddy had fixed the brakes on my bike, and I followed him up the hill from our house, on our bikes, in the dark of the weekday morning.  Your daddy has always looked natural on a bike. I’ve seen a photo of him at only 4 years old riding a bike, with the same confidence and poise that he…

Blessing

Blessing

Blessing A couple of weeks ago I was standing in the chemist, with my 3 month old babe in her almost comically large buggy. Why did we feel we needed the widest buggy we could buy? I was there to buy cream for her,  because her bottom was sore.  I couldn’t bear to see her skin in pain, I couldn’t bear to know there was something in my power to make things better for her than I had not done.  My Mum, bless her, had already spent about $50 on…

A Brief and Unusual Obligation

A Brief and Unusual Obligation

It was a brief interaction. He was in need of help but unwilling to accept it and clearly prone to impulse. Me, just a woman out for a morning jog, not expecting to have the fate of another life placed into my hands before I’d even had my morning shower. I had noticed him as I approached the part of the footpath that ran between a wooded reserve and a busy road. It was an unusual place for him to be; crouched down close to the footpath. It was before dawn and still…

All This Love If You Need It

All This Love If You Need It

One out of four seemed a reasonable turn out, given our geographical spread these days. For Dad’s birthday last weekend, I was the sole kidult physically present to wish him a happy birthday. But on the morning of his birthday, there was a kind of digital party created, with first a video call to my brother, then as Mum and Dad continue talking to him, I answered the landline to one sister, and we chatted in the lounge as I could hear my parents talking to my brother in the…

Some Kind of Wonderful

Some Kind of Wonderful

The photo above was taken at the island Tiri Tiri Matangi. It’s a magical place, in the Hauraki Gulf and accessibly by a ferry from downtown Auckland.  Going there feels special because you can only approach it by boat, and only a few people are able to stay each night. It also feels like one of Auckland’s many well kept secrets. The last time I went, the day I took this photo, it was the middle of the New Zealand winter. In some of the photos, we’re wearing shirts and…

Don’t Fear The Reaper : La Plagne Part II

Don’t Fear The Reaper : La Plagne Part II

And so there I was, sliding down the slopes of La Plagne in Savoie, with Blue Oyster Cult’s ‘Don’t Fear the Reaper’ playing on a loop in my head.  That 70s guitar riff playing out in my head as I did my best to control my speed and follow the girl in front of me, who I had decided had good technique.  It was quite a beautiful moment. As much as my story of learning to ski was about overcoming my mental blocks about not being good at sport, it…