Thursday, March 29, 2007

Thinking Blogger

Okay, so I have been paid the huge compliment of being listed for a Thinking Blogger award by Digger Jones, Desmond, Oblivion, Cat, Aphron and (quite a surprise here) Christian Husband.

I don't always participate in memes and tags, but I am really quite touched by this one. Partly due to the calibre of the people who named me and partly because of their descriptions of this blog: brtual honesty, integrity, struggle, poignant, real substance, will challenge you [pause for a moment of little tears in my eyes]... Although I sound like a real barrel of laughs, don't I?

Now, naming my five Thinking Bloggers is hard to do without just tagging those people right back again. Like FTN, perhaps I should nominate a few bloggers who my readers may be less familar with and might enjoy.

Mu Ling's The Pavilion: Mu Ling tends to highlight the ways in which we can craft complicated solutions to personal problems - rather than advocating the one approach that will fit all problems, she accepts that we can take bits of solutions, even clearly temporary solutions, and sort of paste them together to construct a viable life. Also, I love her beautiful, rather spare writing style. I wish I wrote like her.

LePhare's Lighthouse: LePhare cares for his wife, who is largely bed-bound with Multiple Sclerosis. There is something so moving about the limitations and endless responsibilities he has taken on out of love for his wife. I kind of accept that my own partner's health difficulties may one day take a huge turn for the worse and put me in a similar position. When I read him, I don't know, I feel like I could stand it if I had to.

Tertia's So Close: I woke up one day in 2005 to the fact that two people I had not previously connected were actually the same person. I had previously heard that there was a woman who had endured multiple miscarriages, then achieved a pregnancy with so many fetuses she had to reduce some to give the others a chance to live. She was left with twin boys, one of which died at 21 weeks gestation and the second of which died two weeks after the birth. I remember thinking that this was the worst fucking story I had ever heard. I had not realized that this was a blogger I had actually been reading for some time because she was so intelligent and insightful and funny. I cried buckets, reading back through her archives, and felt so grateful for my own Little Dude. Tertia is a tribute to the human capacity to survive tragedy and still flourish. She is now the proud mother of two year old twins and the author of a book on her experience of infertility. She also writes great posts about her husband, her job, her extended family and post-apartheid South Africa.

Kateri's Wet Feet: Kateri is the mother of two little girls and has a much more "granola" approach to mothering that I do. She is also the mother of another little girl she gave up for adoption. She writes very passionately about Attachment Parenting, adoption and other issues and has made me think very hard about issues of fertility and donation and the other side of the happy stories about infertile couples who are able to adopt.

Ali- Nietzsche's Girl: Ali's life is a lot like mine used to be when I was still at university. She is still wrestling with Kierkegaard and Derrida and, of course, Neitzsche, and I enjoy a little vicarious contact with the world of university, philosophy and radical causes that was such a huge part of my life at one time, but which I seem to have left largely behind. I am really wondering where Ali will end up in five years time. I hope she is still blogging then.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Satisfaction II

All this time spend lying around is giving me a lot of time to think. One of my thoughts is that I need to start looking around for a new job.

The truth is, I'm bored. Bored, bored, bored. I normally switch areas every year or so, moving on once I'm not really learning anything new any more. But their flexibility about my hours has helped me to meet my family responsibilities and so I've stayed longer than I ever have before. Also, my colleagues and my direct boss are such decent people that I've found it hard to tear myself away.

But I'm now reaching that point where I just can't get excited about the work any more. I don't get absorbed in it. I know it so well that I do it with about a quarter of my brain and the rest of my brain just wanders off to ponder other things.

And, of course, there is more to it. Some of you may remember that I had what I thought would be a policy victory some months ago. That victory is not turning out the way I hoped. Essentially, for ideological and political reasons, our politicians are shifting our policy area around towards something that is more popular but which I think is wrong, wrong, wrong. Damn, I hate election years!

Almost all the original elements I put up are still there, but altered to fit in with their stupid ideological opinions and their crass political opportunism. I am usually quite realistic about what can and cannot be achieved in government, but in this case, I am offended.

It's like I gave them a baby, a healthy, beautiful baby that I was proud of. They congratulated me, cooed over it - and then they tore it up, sewed all the limbs on backwards and tried to pass it off as the same baby. It isn't. It's a Dr Frankenstein freak-fest.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Baby's Got Back II

I am still lying around on the floor. And this episode is reminding me of too many things.

When I've told people in the past that I've got a bad back, I've said, "It was terrible in the beginning. But I finally got really great treatment and now I can manage it - if I'm careful, and make sure I keep up moderate exercise and massages." And that has been true.

But it's only now that I'm lying here that I am remembering just how terrible it was in the beginning. The pain. Immediately after the first injury, most of it was referred into my chest and I thought I was having a heart attack. It wasn't until two years later, when the other injuries had healed up, that it was finally diagnosed as primarily a back problem.

The months, and I mean months, on the floor. It hurt to breathe. A walk down the road to catch the bus to university, attend classes, sit and talk with people - that was all out of my reach.

The weight I gained. I had been a person who could eat a lot because she exercised a lot. Then I couldn't exercise at all. The weight crept on, about a kilo every two to three months. It turned me into a person I hardly recognised. My face grew large and round like someone had pumped it up with a bicycle pump. And I'm just not going to say anything about my arse.

The sense that life was going by. Just going by, while I lay around on the floor.

I had semi-forgotten all this. It's more than ten years ago now. But now I remember.

And I'm frightened. My back is not getting better as quickly as I hoped. I have been off work. My boss says they are so busy that I'm better off staying away on sick leave if I'm not up to a normal workload, which I'm not. The Big Dude is having to do more than he can really manage long-term. My mum has been helping, but she has to have an operation next week. My Little Dude can't figure out why mummy is always on the floor and can't play with him. I'm worried that my doctor is not taking this problem seriously enough.

A bad back. It sounds so generic, right? Everyone's got one.

But if you are normally the only able-bodied person in the house, and you are out of action for more than two weeks, that is not a problem - it's a crisis.

You know all those balls I normally keep in the air? That frantic juggling act I maintain? Those balls are starting to drop.

And now I am frightened that I am going back to the beginning.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Baby's Got Back

Sadly, Emily has hurt her back and is spending her days lying on the floor, drugged up on pain killers and watching Dr Phil. She can report that Dr Phil is much better when you're on drugs.

She can't make it to the computer right now. Normal service will resume as soon as possible.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Philosophy of Life

The always-stimulating Trueself has posted the results of a quiz on her blog about her philosophy of life.

Here are my results:

You scored as Existentialism. Your life is guided by the concept of Existentialism: You choose the meaning and purpose of your life.

“Man is condemned to be free; because once thrown into the world, he is responsible for everything he does.”
“It is up to you to give [life] a meaning.”
--Jean-Paul Sartre

“It is man's natural sickness to believe that he possesses the Truth.”
--Blaise Pascal

More info at Arocoun's Wikipedia User Page...







Justice (Fairness)


Divine Command




Strong Egoism






What philosophy do you follow? (v1.03)
created with

Have you ever noticed that these things can be surprisingly accurate?

Possibly this explains why I am not very good at Christianity and churches and why somebody recently found this site by looking under "imperfect Christian" (note the very low score for divine command - much lower than Trueself's!).

Now I think about it, probably the philosopher who has had the most influence on the way I live my life is Victor Frankl.

Also, I am relieved to see that I am still 65 per cent hedonist!

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Naked Time Good

Naked Time was good.

It started unpromisingly, with the Big Dude looking very pale and announcing that he really wasn't up to much. I was feeling very stressed about work and ranting about my workload. Extremely arousing scenario, huh?

But it was gentle. It was slow. It was kind of subtle. It involved a lot of kissing and touching, followed by mutual oral sex. I had three orgasms - the first seemed to take a long time to happen, but it left me so quiveringly sensitive that the second and third were exquisite.

Then, one for him, by hand and mouth.

There is something about sex with a long-term partner. A one night stand, a passionate affair, has spontaneity and mystery. It can be hot. But it's often awkward. Especially afterwards.

With a long-term partner, everyone knows what to do. Everyone knows what they like. And somehow, the past feeds into the present. The hand that strokes down my stomach is the same hand that traced my curves when I was 21 years old and the same hand that gently caressed my pregnant belly.

I am so happy that the mutuality is back. I really don't mind very much what we actually do, as long as it involves both of us.

Friday, March 02, 2007


The Big Dude is reviving weekly Naked Time. That's good.

We're starting tonight. That's even better.

So, now I am wondering how it will be. Will it be mutual? Will it be like last time? That seems like too much to hope for, twice in two weeks.

And, strangely enough, I think I have stagefright.