It’s officially the last day of 2012 and I have no grand plans for any NYE festivities. Those days came to an abrupt halt when children entered our lives! I can’t say I miss it too much. I had my fair share of fun and right now the idea of the kids tucked up in bed, a glass of red, and a DVD with my husband seem the perfect way to end to the year.
I am not big on resolutions but as each years draws to a close I am partial to some reflection. Looking back over the past year I have had some highs and lows and a lot of average stuff in between. There have been fabulous times, difficult times and a few catastrophes in the mix, but fortunately nothing too serious. I’ve experienced birth and death, sadness and sheer joy. Here’s a little summary of my year…
The highs – the BIGGEST HIGH
On March 3 at 5pm I gave birth to my third baby – another healthy, beautiful girl. There is no greater experience in life and I feel deeply blessed that I have been able to experience the thrill and joy of childbirth three times now. My gorgeous Holly was born and the labour was wonderful. I had the childbirth experience that I had hoped for. It was natural, free of intervention and (mostly) calm. My two previous labours had both resulted in epidurals and vacuum extractions, and I had desperately hoped to give birth naturally. I got immediate skin on skin contact and I was the one to announce her sex. I can honestly say those first few minutes were the most blissful moments of my life. And then my body went into shock…but lets not spoil the moment.
Unfortunately from this wonderful high came a big low two weeks later when I suffered a serious post-natal haemorrhage and narrowly avoided a hysterectomy. When I was being rushed to theatre in the middle of the night I was scared but I remember feeling relieved that it was me and not my baby at risk. I can’t imagine anything more frightening than watching your baby suffer a health scare. I took some time to recover fully from my postnatal complications but I was the recipient of tremendous love and support from my friends and family, and mostly my husband, who rallied around me to help ease my load.
The cycle of life has never been more apparent to me than it was in 2012. I said goodbye to two people close to me. Early in the year, I attended the funeral for a friend who was just 39 years old when he died from melanoma. There was so much pain and sadness at his service and the suffering of his family was heart breaking. I remember touching my heavily pregnant tummy for comfort during the service and thinking how closely life and death are linked and how precarious and precious life is. His life was only half lived but he crammed a lot of life into his 39 years.
Later in the year I also said goodbye to a very close family friend – a surrogate aunt. She was 70 when she died of the exact same cancer. She died a week after I took in my newborn baby to the hospital to visit her. I miss her.
The big developments
This year my eldest daughter started preschool. Bidding her farewell on her first day of kinder was a big day for her, and for me. I confess I felt quite emotional….something that surprised me. My “big girl” has entered the school ‘system’. And whilst she won’t start school for another two years, she’s developing and growing up fast.
My second born daughter turned two and she too is developing at a furious rate. She is constructing full sentences now and she is showing a very strong will and determined personality!
My young baby is now 9 months old and she is a delight. She is so happy watching her older sisters play and it won’t be long before she is a big part of the action.
In amidst the chaos of daily life I have been dabbling in a bit of freelance writing. My sister and very close friend encouraged me to put pen to paper. And I am so grateful they did. My writing has now been published in a variety of publications including Daily Life, iVillage and Webchild. I am looking forward to developing my skills next year and also dedicating more time to this blog.
This year has been tough. Managing three kids under four (and even under three for a short time) has been all consuming. There have been times when I have wondered what on earth I was thinking having my kids so close together in age! But we have all survived, and we have had some incredible experiences.
So, as I pause to reflect on the year that was, I feel incredibly grateful for all that I have. And whilst not officially a ‘resolution’ I will aim to find some more “me” time in 2013. For almost four years I have exclusively dedicated and devoted myself to my children. Next year I hope to find some time for more writing, reading, Pilates, tennis and slower mothering….
Happy New Year and thank you for following my blog.
May 2013 bring you happy and healthy days.