Wednesday, 19 December 2012

Sad before Christmas

OK, I am supposed to be all excited and happy, getting my last presents ready. But the truth is that when husband brought home our christmas tree, I was sitting in the living room, stared at the thing and felt annoyed that I have to fuss around it. My Christmas spirit is gone. I was looking forward to this year's festivities since the end of summer. I suppose the reason was because our weather this year (specially here in Manchester) was so magnificently miserable since the freak 'week of summer' in March ended, the only think I could look forward to was the Winter. The days are supposed to be cold and miserable, but it is Christmas so ho ho.

Why am I suddenly so melancholic? My cat is gone. My dear old friend passed away during last Sunday night, I found her on Monday morning behind the sofa. She just went there and died quietly. Judging that she seemed quite OK during the weekend - although not herself anymore, I hope she didn't suffer. I didn't have to make the painful decision and take her to the vet, she didn't seemed to get worse or having any pains, she was just slowly disappearing in front of our eyes and then decided to die on Sunday night, alone.

One of the things about this Christmas was that it was supposed to be our last Christmas before we have a baby, our last Christmas in this old group - cat, husband and I. But it will be different, just the two of us. I am very emotional and sad about all of this, but somehow bad things always happen in the worst possible times, when you hope you will just simply enjoy yourself - boom - you are suddenly confronted with a whole new issue to deal with. Christmas lost its magic for me, it will not be the same. I know it is only a cat, but to me every animal is a member of the family, end of story.

Yes, I will put myself together, clean the house and prepare the decorations (we are a little bit late with them, our street is all festive, in our window is a single little star and tree still stands without all the decorations), do the food shopping, prepare a  feast and be glad that I have my great husband, my family (although far away from us) and good friends which we will see during the holidays. I will just think about cat, the way christmas tree used to freak her out and how I always had to watch out so she doesn't try to climb it or attack it, the way she enjoyed jumping around wrapping paper and chase ribbons and my heated arguments with husband that she indeed did understand I am giving her a special christmas gift.

I had to get rid of her things straight away, her bed and every toy is a sad reminder, so I am already working on the big clean. Our house will look as a house with no pet for the first time since we moved in. Next year baby stuff will fill it instead and we will see if our family will grow even more.

Of course I am not writing, I am not in a state of thinking about my characters or pushing my word count forward. November with its writing challenge seems so faraway now! January, promise.

One thing I discovered? Pregnancy yoga, what a life saver. I did some classes and practiced with DVD before I got pregnant, but now I experienced how much it can do for me not only in pregnancy but also when going through something challenging and personal. I am definitely hooked. The physical exercise helped me to make my body happy, breathing calmed me down and final relaxation was just amazing. I slept all night with no waking from discomfort or bad dreams. I spoil myself with a private class because at the moment I am not in the mood for a chit chat but I realized I may meet lots of lovely pregnant ladies and make some good friends. Anyway, the teacher is great and I hope I can discover something about meditation with her, too. Suddenly I am experiencing a need to be quiet and more 'with myself'. It may help me with my creativity and discipline, too. Looks like January will be an exciting month and so will be all of 2013...

Whoever is reading my blog, thank you and have the best Christmas and all the best in 2013!

Wednesday, 12 December 2012

December so far

My word count for December is a big fat 0. I miss nanowrimo. Since it ended I started to do all the other stuff that was needed, all the forgotten or put away things and my novel is lying on the side, waiting patiently. Some people in discussion forums said they didn't take any break as they would miss the story too much. I miss it, too, but somehow I can not bring myself to writing - at the moment I put the other things before writing and before I know it the day is over.
A weird thing is that I feel somehow slower now that I am pregnant. One way, pregnancy makes me busy because there are new things to take care of and plan plus some appointments. I made a firm decision that I will only start to buy and prepare things next year, but I am already quite busy researching practical things around pregnancy and birth preparations. On the other way I feel generally slower, as if everything is taking much longer. Well, definitely walking, I am a good walker as I don't drive but lately I am taking a while to go around. With the icy roads I am a little afraid, too, but the cold without rain is so nice and christmasy..
What takes most of my thoughts at the moment is that my dear cat isn't very well. I inherited this wonderful fury thing after my aunt passed away and it was my condition to move together with my then boyfriend to come with a cat. He hates cats and claims he has got an allergy. There is the occasional sneeze but since we live in a house with a garden and the cat is free to move it isn't that bad. He has got his spray and something to complain about.
Anyway, cat is old and it is getting weaker and weaker, I am so sorry to see it. I am not sure if she will make it through the end of the year or meet my baby. I will do all I can to keep her comfortable and make sure she doesn't suffer. If she could only tell me....
Animals tend to get out of the way and seek privacy when they are not well and I miss our plays and cuddles. It will be hard without her but I have to prepare myself for it.
I am not sure if there will be a new cat any time soon. Husband wants a dog, I want one too (and a cat or two!) but at the moment he is freaking out we will not be able to have an animal as everything is getting soooo expensive and there is a baby on the way... We will see. It will be weird not to have a pet, I suppose we will get one sooner or later. My dream is to have house filled with animals, I see myself right there as a 'mother earth' surrounded by them.
It is hard to sit and write about my characters when there is so much going on and so much stuff on my mind. But I will get there. Writing is too important.
During November I stole a better chair from my husband's desk (we both work from home so there are two desks but only one really good chair which used to be his as I am more out and about and he likes to sit by his computer for hours) and discovered a power of a onesie. Two things that definitely helped me to get through nanowrimo: good chair to support my back and growing bump and a onesie to keep me comfortable and warm.
To cheer myself up I ordered one more. The one I have is pretty civilized, well as far as a onesie can be, but there is a giraffe on its way! Can't wait. It will be huge which is good because I worry my bump will outgrow the one I already own and I have got all winter to go through being more and more pregnant. Husband will be ecstatic. He already noticed my 'playful' pregnancy hormones didn't really kick in as he hoped and now I will walk around looking like a clown. Well, whatever makes ME happy, right?

Monday, 3 December 2012

Hairy Dilemma

I have got an unusual fashion dilemma. Being in the 24th week of my pregnancy, my bump is now noticeable but I am still pretty much able to see myself. I mean I can see myself down there, the bump didn't make the bottom half of my body invisible yet. I am aware that being pregnant and giving birth means my body will be seen more than usually. So I wonder: what is the appropriate hair style in my pubic area? Or, to be specific, at what age is a landing strip inappropriate? I started thinking about it few weeks ago, while shaving, thinking how long will I be able to see what I am doing? And then it dawned on me: very soon I will be pretty much on display. Time to think about my image...
While growing up it was clear that past thirty a woman (obviously a married mother of a family) would not be expect to wear short skirts, even jeans may be considered a little bit too much, to make it short a woman over thirty was settled and should look the part.I suppose she wouldn't even consider touching the pubic hair. When I was little girl grandmothers looked like grandmothers and mums looked like mums. Basically, women were attractive before marriage, than they had kids and their looks went away, making way to the practical things in life. I grew up in a small town in the continental Europe but I believe England wasn't too different. I am thirty five now, expecting my first baby. I married when I was thirty two. It is hard to compare myself with my mother because I remember celebrating her thirtieth birthday with her. She grew up in the times when people married much younger and had families sooner. They didn't have contraception, careers or a sense of entitlement and freedom. A girl would ruin her reputation if she behaved the way we do now.
While I was making my life the life I wanted it to be I had to constantly listen to the comments: 'When I was your age, I was already married and had you and your sister! How hard can it be?'
My dad dated her with the awareness that if he wanted to get serious he should propose and that sex in their relationship might bring pregnancy which would lead to a marriage.
I dated guys who expected me to be on a pill or go on a pill and they would freak if I left my toothbrush in their bathroom. Guys of our generation wanted to enjoy themselves but so did we!
The same thing is about looks. We expect to go with the fashion and keep ourselves looking young for much longer than our mothers. We are no longer considered selfish because we go regularly to a beauty salon or update our wardrobe, it is normal to look good, have hobbies and 'me time' and still function as a wife or a mother (thanks for that!).
I started to shave my pubic area pretty soon, I just didn't like the hair. I worked as a model and a dancer for a while, so hairless look was pretty much normal. I didn't consider the feminist question around it at all and went for it because I liked it. To keep my landing strip was a part of my usual beauty routine done without much thinking, the same way I keep my underarms and legs smooth. Only lately did I start to think about it more and wonder: is there an age limit when too little hair starts to be inappropriate?  Will I look like I am trying to hard? Will I shock my midwife?
I am not prepared to send my razor to a retirement, but I am considering a new look. It may make my life a little bit easier as in few weeks time visibility will become an issue and I am not prepared to make my husband my beautician. On the other hand, if this is the only problem I am facing at the moment, isn't my pregnancy going really well?