08 June 2014

21 : Growing Up - Something Old...

Moving Onward and Upward

It's a strange thing growing up, you never feel quite done. When you are a kid you look at all the 'oldies' and think they just don't know anything, but it also seems right that they go off to work and pay all the bills. Yet when it's your turn, it somehow doesn't feel so 'right'. It's so cool when you get your first pay packet, for me it was cash in an envelope I had to line up and sign for, very happy! It isn't long before you realise how much physical work you are expected to do for the little money you receive, and become pretty annoyed that just because you are 'younger' you should somehow receive less pay. This part annoyed me for many years. Especially as I became a parent way too early and had to support a growing family with a pitiful wage that I worked full time for. Because I had to live so far from my job-only place we could afford, I would spend a minimum of 12 hours away from home each day just for the privilege!

I'm pleased to say that things have improved somewhat in the financial situation. However, in many ways it truly is only in comparison to how it used to be. Considering we have 8 children between us (only 2 have left home-sort of) we are still in the midst of the financial/poverty grind. We have heaps more stuff, I mean assets, but we also have only just enough money to pay for it all, just. I figured out a long time ago that although we have to be a slave to money in some respects, we certainly don't have to put up with situations that cause you to hate what you do. Life is all about choices and opportunity, you can choose to stay the same or you can take the opportunity to improve your life and your job.

I have been very privileged in my life to have had the opportunity to raise my own six children, three already into adulthood. It's really nice to see all that damn hard work and huge fortune you end up spending actually pay off with well rounded, educated and motivated adult children. Not too many families get the opportunity to have older children and younger children at the same time. Of course personally it means you lose your opportunity to finally do your own things and not have to worry about the daily grind of caring for children. Instead, I'm still taking kids to school, sports, dealing with homework and balancing studying and working to somehow pay for it all. The pay off is you get to appreciate a little more how quickly they will grow and learn to become independent of you, you already know that because you have been through it before.  When you are caught up in the middle of all the constant activity and drama the first time around you forget that this is just another stage of life, one that you need to get through to be able to move to the next. We are all learning together; the children, the teenagers, the adult children and us. All moving forward and experiencing new things all the time, nothing is set in stone, life is flexible and malleable.

I have my memories of my children as babies, as toddlers, as cheeky little kids and then the growing years, right up to the arguments of teenage years. I've done it all, experienced it all, and I'll do it all again and again until they are all grown and off exploring the world. I'm very lucky to have this experience extended over so many years, of course it means that my life has to take a different course than if I had never had any children. It doesn't mean that I don't get a life or experiences of my own. I have had an incredible life, I feel as though I've lived multiple lives all in the one and I'm only 42! I've got so much more to come and I'm excited about that, about the years ahead.

My biggest problem is fitting everything I want to do in my life, there are so many amazing places out there I want to visit and people I'd love to meet. I don't want to spend all of my days stuck in the same house, in the same neighbourhood, in the same job, surrounded by the same people. I want to learn new things, experience new things and new places. I feel I still have so much more to give and enjoy from this amazing world we live in. I'm so over worrying about all the little things, the crap of mundane life and mundane people. There's so much more to life than that, the world is ready to be explored.  

In the meantime, however, I get to enjoy my cozy home, I love where I live, I love the views from my house, I love that my kids are close to their school and their friends and I love that we have a place that we can truly call home. A home surrounded by family photo's of all our experiences, filled with hand picked pieces of furniture that we love, full of life, aquariums, laughter and small and large feet running through the house at all hours.  Although sometimes this can be annoying!

I especially love to walk through my home and enjoy the many, many photo's adorning the walls. I particularly love my baby pictures at the entrance of our home; all my babies lined up together, so many. I remember each and every one of their births and love those memories, they were amazing times but certainly not without the stress and worry that comes along with a new so called bundle of joy. 

Sadly there's one photo that reminds me of our loss, of the hole in my heart that will never quite heal. We still have her picture with the other babies, but it's not a picture of her birth, it's a picture captured when we first saw her on the ultrasound screen. A tiny perfect little human, that we made, a part of us; kicking tiny legs, waving tiny arms, heart beating strongly. Perfect. Within weeks we lost her forever, gone, just like that. Our dreams of her life with us gone. Others may be able to forget that and wipe it from memory, pass it off as one of those things.  For us we couldn't do that, she meant more to us than that, she had already become a part of our family; we gave her the name we had chosen and we put her photo with the others along with an angel to watch over her. She physically left us but has never truly left me, she is with me forever in a way none of the other kids will be. She won't grow up and leave me and move on, she will always be with me in her own special way, I have to learn to be at peace with that. Even still, the ache remains, the emptiness from her physical presence gone from this earth. 

However, I am so lucky to have had my six babies that did make the long journey and survived, one day I hope to enjoy grandchildren. Life will become full circle then and it will be amazing to see these new people existing because I brought my six into the world. I know those six will make a difference in their own ways and contribute to the world in amazing ways. I can't wait to see that and to see what else I have to give and get to experience ...  

Life is good!

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