Ramblings of a Ringless Wife

Ringless Wife, Messy House, Cluttered Brain. All in a standard day.

May 25: What being a big sister means.

I am one of luckiest people in the world. Why? Because I have a big sister, and I am a big sister.

Now, we all know bigger siblings are generally tied in to hair pulling, fairy pinching, dobbing, wrestling, and death threats every other day. Right? But people tend to forget the finer, more important details and privileges, that come with the title.

I’m talking about the right to call your little siblings every name under the sun, but threatening anyone who even calls them a “silly-head”; Or the right to teach your sister how to aim a kick at the Taco of the girl who is bullying her; The right to stalk their Facebook page and tell them when their language is disgusting. But, most importantly the responsibility that comes with being, in my case, a big sister.

To me, being a big sister is all about backing your siblings up, no matter what they are doing. This is not to say that you support everything they do: I have been known to absolutely go off tap at all my siblings for the way they speak, act and/or treat the rest of us. But the second anything goes wrong, you are there for them. Even if it is a 12 year old’s feelings at being left out of something, it is your duty to make sure they smile.

A friend of mine, Jenny, says:
This is why big sisters are so important to little sisters!
1) They make you smile when all you want to do is cry
2) They will say no to you and make you stand on your own two feet!(even if they know you really do need to borrow that 20 bucks!)
3) All that fighting as youngsters teaches little sister not to put up with any ones crap!
4) All the baby sitting you do for big sister will be repaid when you have babies!
5) They give you something to aspire to as a mother and friend and employee because honestly all little sisters hope to grow up to be like their big sister!
6) If we could look half as good as big sister in a mini skirt we little sisters would be happy
7) Knowing that at the end of the day no matter where you are, who you are with, or what stage of your life you are in, big sister will give you a hug and make you feel like nothing else matters!
Your sister has your back .
9) And most importantly she will always be your friend coz she has no choice!

Jenny has hit the nail on the head with all her points. Being a big sister means looking beyond the smile and seeing what they’re thinking. It means that you have to force out what they’re feeling, even if it means sitting on them until they spill it out.

It means letting your little siblings know that no matter what they do, or what they say, or how they act – you will always have their back, you will always stand by them… and you will slap them across the chops if they get too cheeky.

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April 3: Since When is Easter all about Eggs?

Today, I received the panicked message from my Big Sister saying “OMG, all the eggs are sold and I have nothing for Easter, WTF am I going to do?”

This will be the first year in which I give eggs for Easter – I generally give small gifts or vouchers and I really don’t feel comfortable handing out Chocolate to the young ones who are going to get a million tablespoons of sugar, anyway.

I like to give something that is going to be used for more time than it takes to go through someones digestive tract – and OK, a toy might only be cool for approximately 4.75 minutes, but atleast that 4 minutes more than it takes for it to be scoffed.

As both my sister and I are not exactly rolling in the dough, we needed to come up with an idea that still provided everyone with something from her family for Easter, that didn’t cost a fortune, and allowed her to be able to be organised within 3 days.

It didn’t take long for an idea to hit me: KuppyKakes for everyone!

So tonight, my sister and nephew came over and we began a cooking session that left everyone with six kuppies and a personal decoration idea for them.

After a few hours, Bec had more than enough Kuppies for all who needed them, and some left over. We had decoration ideas, different flavours, and a way to package them for a fraction of the standard price so that everyone had their own “special” kakes.

It made me wonder, WHY is there so much emphasis on the commercial side of Easter? I know that I would prefer to have kuppies made for me than an egg that is just picked off a shelf. I would rather have my nephew make me a card that said “Love you Aunty Gert!’ than receive anything else from him.

Why do people feel it’s insufficient to make something for others instead of buying it?
Why does Easter carry with it an expectation that everyone must be given something store bought?
It’s not like it’s Christmas; it’s not like it’s a birthday…

I will be giving eggs to all who I have to, and gifts to some as well. I will enjoy the time spent with my family and I will enjoy the looks on my families faces when they get what I give them.

But I will also be trying to find a different way to provide my easter ideas next year.

xxx

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March 19 : Family Grudges

In every family, there are grudges. Some are over little things, some are over big things, and some just shouldn’t even be an issue.

I’m not above it either: there is a family member who is in my immediate family whom I haven’t spoken to since October.

Grudges happen for a variety of reasons. It can be jealousy, meaness, words said that can never be taken back; it can be a difference of opinions or it can be over who got a better Christmas Present.

It’s how you deal with it that makes or breaks the family.

I know in my instance, it was easier for me just to wipe my hands of this person, and realise that her thoughts and opinions don’t influence me or my future kids lives, so I can live without them. That is not to say that I don’t miss her, or her baby, because sometimes I do. I just acknowledge that her and I will never be friends, we will never get along like a house on fire, and we won’t be close. And that is perfectly fine.  At the end of  of the day I will always love her and her babies, but we are just not able to communicate.

For some people, they manage to put aside their grudges and co-exist fairly harmoniously for the sake of other family members. I will be honest at this point and say that I wished I had this fabulous gift. In some aspects I can, but a lot of the time I just cannot hold my inner bitch tongue.

I know several people who have grudges against me but haven’t as yet told me why, and again, I am OK with this. If a person can’t even tell me what it is that I have done wrong, then obviously I don’t need them or their input into my life. I do find it sad within a family structure, but hey, life sucks! And if it didn’t, we would all fall off.

I am very lucky in that within my immediate family, everyone is aware of why someone else isn’t talking to them. There isn’t a lot of room within either side of my family for back-door politics; we are all very outspoken, and have no qualms in pointing out who is pissing us off and how they are doing it. We are also very good and hurling back whatever reasons have come to us (in my family, we are all perfect… ya get me?).

Grudges can provide an awful lot of entertainment within a family unit as well. There is nothing like sitting around a Christmas Dinner table, and going for Gold on a family who can’t look any body straight in the eye… to us, it is a very Worthy subject. And she knows we all think of it, and talk of it, because everyone of us has told her straight to her face. (That’s another thing I like about my family and its grudges – we all only say what we have already said to the person about it!)

I guess, at the end of the day, the big thing is making sure that your grudges don’t affect the people around you. I know for one person in particular, she and I will be perfectly nice to each other for the sake of our Grandmother even though we barely speak and have very little to do with each other nowadays.

And you always need to remember, that grudges can be resolved. One day, your person whom you are grudging against will be dead – and then it may be too late.

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January 2nd: Being asked an unanswerable question.

Have you ever been asked an unanswerable question?

I have two things that I would move Heaven and Earth to have. They’re not materialistic, such as a new car, a house, or even my midwifery dream.

Both of these things are so deeply buried in my soul that when I was asked to choose, I honestly couldn’t. I found a question to which I had no answer, and Google couldn’t even help me!
To take a quote from the distinguished Captain Feathersword, you could have blown me down with a feather! Wow… two of my deepest, fiercest dreams and someone was expecting me to make a choice. I thought on this conundrum for days; and I still don’t have an answer, but I now highly doubt I ever will.

“Hey Kloi… If you had to choose between having a baby, or having your nan back, what would you choose?”

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My Great-Grandmother, Ellen Mary, was born on 30/10/1917 and joined my Pop after more than 20 years of widow-ship on 16/3/2010. To say that my world was broken is an understatement. Few know just how deeply depressed and black I became. My life was shaken, and it will never be the same. Ever.

Nanny was a verifiable angel. She grew up in the depression, so if anything was free she took it with both hands! She never drank, but did have a shandy at birthdays, christenings, weddings and funerals… considering there is over 100 descendants of her, I’m sure you can see the funny side to that statement. She was “the Knitting Lady” in my hometown, and every body loved her. Nanny was devoutly religious, and knew from an early age that one day she would be worthy of God and a place in Heaven. My Mum said after Nanny has passed, “I certainly hope there is a God, because if there isn’t, Nanny is gonna be pi-iiiissed!”

Nanny was not just “Nan” to our family. She was, to just about every one, Nanna Midson.
But to me, she was something worth aspiring to. To my mum, Nan was even more.
Don’t get me wrong, there are times where I think I should have done more for Nanny. I should have behaved differently and realised the jewel she was much earlier than I did. But, I like to think that Nanny always knew how much I loved her – and I never left her company without telling her so – and that she knew how pivotal she was to my life.

For the last couple of months of Nanny’s life, I began driving to Myrtleford of a Thursday afternoon, and taking Nanny out for lunch and a “caffecina” at Heiners Bakery. When she was admitted to hospital in Early March. 2010, I realised that I wasn’t going to have my Nanny forever… I wasn’t going to have my Nanny for a few more months… I was going to be lucky to have her for a few more days.

Every second day I was in Myrtleford, sitting beside Nanny in her hospital. We would talk… or rather, I would talk, and Nanny would nod at the Angels who I believe were surrounding her bed. If she slept, I would sit quietly and read. But when she was in pain, or delirious… It was the most agonising thing in my life. I was watching someone who had kissed my booboos, made me yummy meals, hugged my hurt away, and taught me more in the final weeks of her life than anyone else ever will. And I couldn’t stop it. I couldn’t ease it. I couldn’t help her.

I learnt what helplessness was. On March 15th, I had to leave the room, and I could still hear her screams and cries from inside, through a closed door. I stood outside her door, sobbing because I couldn’t stop it. I couldn’t do anything.

That was the last time I saw her. If only I knew then what I do know.

I was due to go back on the 17th, and had planned to be there by 1130am. But at 7.13am on the 16th, I was woken by Daniel. I told him how I felt weird, and how I just wanted to cry. I remember him saying, “It’s about to get worse. She’s gone, Babe.”

I remember lying there for a minute, being totally stunned, but hearing this banshee-like scream in my head. And the flood gates opened. I cried myself sick.
I went out the front to have a smoke, and I could still see my Grandmothers footprints from where she came to the door to tell Daniel. And I cried. I screamed. I vomited. And I hated. Hated, everything.

Realising that Nanny was gone wasn’t happening for me – and it still isn’t to an aspect. I remember her funeral, and I remember doing what I know she would have wanted me to. But in reality, the weeks and months passed afterward in a vale of tears. I only found out much later how worried so many people were of me.

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I even now have bouts where I can’t stop crying. Ask my manicurist, Rach! She copped it the other day, unlike any one has in the last few months.  And I posed to her the question asked of me. Rach gave me the simplest answer, and one I hadn’t even thought of… “I wouldn’t choose.”

I ended up answering the poser just as simply. “You can not make me choose between things like that.”

On reading back over this blog, I have deviated so far from what I wanted to say. This seemed to write itself, and as such, I don’t think I will change it.

Inside every persons life is a jewel. Cherish it, Polish it, Take better care of it than you do of yourself. One day, your jewel will be gone; your heart will be broken; and your life shattered.

In Memory Of,
Ellen Mary Midson
Born in Young, 30/10/1917
Died in Myrtleford, 16/03/2010

Good Morning Nanny. I love you.
I miss you more, today, than yesterday…
But not as much as tomorrow…

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