When a house isn’t a home

A short while after I fell pregnant with Tatum, my husband started getting really antsy about our living situation. He was renting a typical Johannesburg bachelor flat, at least it had a decent bathroom and a second bedroom. All he wanted was a garden and space for little Sesame to run around and maybe a puppy even.

He phoned a realtor and we were quickly brought back to earth from our white picket fence dream. We didn’t qualify for a huge loan, but she said we’ll find something in our price range. We went and looked at a total of three places and decided that the one with the bigish garden is what we want. We were so naïve…

We just celebrated our one year house anniversary when a month or so later I found out that I was pregnant again.

Grant and I were reeling. How are we going to fit a toddler bed and a crib into a room that barely holds one child’s belongings? Grant phoned someone and he gave us his recommendations. There was no way on this dear planet that we would be able to make our place work for a family of four.

So we set out to find a rental for us as well as renters for our property. We found a really nice spacious home. No more listening to the upstairs neighbours procreating or drop a bag of marbles. After a year and 4 months the place has become so boring and bland. Everything, and I mean everything is painted and tiled in neutrals and browns. It makes me want to vomit in my mouth a little bit.

My soul is yearning for a place of our own where I can hang our degrees and family photo’s with pride. Paint and decorate to my hearts content. For now, I can only lust after the chic Scandi inspired spaces on Instagram. 

Buying that property was the worst mistake we made together. And I do wish we could turn back time and just decide that the bachelor pad had more than enough space for at least a year. It would have given us time to save and prepare to purchase a home of our own that would last us longer than a year. 

I’m off to go drool over posts over at Apartment Therapy now. 

Grieve, we all do it differently.

 

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No, the cold gloomy Johannesburg weather didn’t throw me into the pits of despair over the weekend…

The old saying goes that time heals all wounds, I tend do disagree. You see, today is my biological father’s 8th birthday, not on earth, a big one as he would have turned 50 today. As much as I was okay about it, when my sister phoned to tell me that she will be putting flowers on his grave today, I’m not that okay today. Maybe it was the horrible dreams about death I had the whole of last night or the unexpected message someone posted on Facebook. But today, I kind of miss him. Today my heart is really sore, and that’s when I realise that after eight years, the pain is still very much real and hurts just as much as the day you left us.

When my Father passed away, he left three woman with a mountain of unfinished business. A real business and lots and lots of unresolved issues and feelings behind. You see, a lot of water ran into the ocean leading up to my fathers passing , and wherever he is now, is probably for the better.

But I do miss him. I haven’t given him and his death any thought as that is how I grieve. Things are swept under the rug for another day, and I move on and get on with life. Crying wasn’t going to help me pass Matric, grieve sure as hell wasn’t going to put me through university. No, I moved on and “forgot” about it.

So on days like today, on his birthday, I miss him. I spare a thought of what could have been and little bit by little bit I deal with the sorrow and pain that still lingers in my heart over what happened and why he decided to leave.

Happy 50th Birthday to you!

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Marriage is anything but beautiful 

You get to live your vows on a daily basis.

“To be my wife/husband, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and health, to love and to cherish, until we are parted by death. This is my solemn vow.”

As a husband and wife you get to see the absolute worst part of that person’s soul. When they’ve been disappointed, mad, sad, stubborn, so annoying that you want to knock him out with the Le Creuset pan. When they are so unapproachable and unlovable all you want to do is shake them by the shoulders. 

But you also get to experience special moments with that person. The unnamed emotions when your first baby is born. The silly moments teasing each other in the kitchen, taunting, joking. The highs and the lows that, that person gets to experience in their lifetime.

You get to see the gross parts. When that person wakes up after a surgery and they mumble the weirdest stuff, the bed farts, morning breath. When he is sick and can’t even reach for the remote because of Man flu.

Marriage isn’t a one size fits all. It’s anything but beautiful. But it’s a rollercoaster ride you get to experience with hopefully one person for the rest of your life. Because that is love. It’s perfect in it’s imperfections. 

On the dark days

Sometimes it feels like you can conquer Everest without even preparing for it and on other days it feels like you can just pull the duvet over your head in the hopes that your bed will swallow you in.

I’ve struggled with depression for the most part of my teen and adult life. Without going into major detail there has been catalysts in my life that were really hard for me to handle at that stage. More recently I was told by my Doctor that I mainly struggle with Seasonal Depression and anxiety. You see, my head is a busy space. Grand Central of brains, and I retract and sort and work through things there and then I go quiet. Very quiet. And this causes even more problems because my “mood” is mistaken for rudeness. Plus I have bitchy resting face, so fun times all around. 

But I don’t get to lay in bed and eat slabs of chocolate and little pots of Haägen Dazs because I’m an adult and I have responsibilities. There’s no such thing as slouching around in your pajamas with messy hair and to care for yourself. I’ve been having a few of these days as of late. 

As the end of my contract creeps closer and closer, I’m left wondering what’s going to happen with our household. Our family. I lay in bed restless at night and if the slightest thought of job hunting sneaks in, I can kiss my dreams goodbye. 

I guess where I’m going with this is that you just can’t always have a perfect happy sitcom life. These dark days are there to ground, and sort and file through the library that is my brain and get on with life again.

I’m now going to pull the duvet over my head in the hopes of my children thinking the bed swallowed me for real.

A new month closer to the next chapter 

We’re already two days into August and as much as I wish Spring with all the promises of newness will come now (the Winter lurgies just won’t let go of the Martin family) I am scared. 

I’m scared for the main reason that my temporary contract will expire in the beginning of September and so far nothing has come from any of the leads I had or positions I’ve applied for. The unemployment rate in South-Africa has recently been reported as 26.6%. That’s just a little bit above a quarter of our workforce. 

So with my clever Human Resource Degree let me tell you what according to the clever people unemployed is defined as.

Unemployed individuals can be categorised into two groups. Group One which is individuals actively searching for employment and want to work and Group Two whom has no prospect or willingness to work.

I’m in Group One, actively, on a daily basis sending CV’s out. There’s just no way in our current Economic climate one can be without a steady and definite income. There’s bills to pay, cars and insurance, the never ending story of nappies and hungry tummies to feed. But what if nothing comes at the start of the new month? People assume yeah she’s got an older husband, no worries he’ll pay for everything. No, I didn’t marry my husband for any kind of meal ticket and secondly I’m not a lady of luxury. I want to work, as much as the guilt eats me up when I miss an extra hour with my girls because of traffic, I have a want and need to succeed in life in order to provide for them. 

Come September I might just have something going for myself or I might be unemployed. But whatever it is, it all will work out for the best. There is a plan for me.

Life Lately

After my last post it has been way too quiet on the blog. The same can’t be said for my “real” life.

Let’s catch up!

Finishing the Well I am Challenge became my main focus, and let’s face it, nobody wants to read about bland chicken and broccoli. Dieting was strict and my training programme became even tougher. The challenge came to an end on 16 June 2016, on Youth day. I thought it was quite an apt day to have the challenge finish on a day where we celebrate the youth of our country. Although I am still classified as a youth or a millennial, being only 25, I didn’t feel like a young mommy. I went from muffin top to almost mean abs, from lethargic all day to Duracell bunny. If it wasn’t for the support of my husband in the final days, which competed in IFBB for close to 10 years, I don’t think I would have made it. He stuck it out through my hangry moods and sore muscles and even patiently took my after photos if I didn’t think they looked good enough. I love my husband dearly, and the patience he has exuded during the challenge was admirable. So a shout out to my wonderful husband for keeping the balance in our house, bathing the girls on the nights that I went to gym, gave sound advice and kept me from cheating on my diet. You allowed me to find myself again, and I am glad that the old me is back as a new and improved version.

The finalists were announced on 27 June, which was a day of total torture! I was stalking the Well I am Facebook Page like a pro. I can safely say that when I went onto the page at around 08:00 there was 13504 likes on the page. At my very last look the likes had gone up to 13514 (and it has increased to 13990 during the course of the week!) During this last check-in, I was actually finishing up my ab training for the day and then I saw the photo. At first I thought nah, can’t be. I was one of the finalists and out of pure joy and excitement I burst out crying in the gym (I’m that person) and then I phoned my husband to tell him about the news.

 If you would like to give support to the 12 Female and 7 Male Finalists, please go and have a look on the official Well I Am Facebook page and give someone a like or comment. These men and ladies have gone through some remarkable transformations, even the ones who did not make it to the finals.

The Grand Prize winners will be announced on 5 July 2016! Good luck to each and every challenger, all the best.

Mothersday and Fathersday also happened since my last post and I will be posting about these two events as well in the course of the new week. I received the nicest Foodie Box from Date Factory for Mothersday, and I will be giving a review on the box. On Fathersday we had a whole Dads weekend celebrating the husband, with some “tourist” type travelling and exploring our vibrant city.

I don’t have many other predictions for the coming month, one little long weekend away to Mpumalanga for the Jock Classic, which the husband is training hard for at the moment.

Keep warm and keep healthy.

It’s all downhill from here

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There is officially 22 days left of the Well I Am Challenge, and from here on out it’s all downhill. But, in a good way.

I’m starting to become a bit antsy about the preparation that still needs to take place before I take those after photo’s. Thinking along the lines of getting a spray tan because I can actually give the friendly ghost a run for his money. My competitive side however is starting to frazzle! I keep having these thoughts of “did I go to gym often enough, how badly did my flu filled week affect my results, was I strict enough with my diet…” All normal thoughts I guess.
However, I am continuously comparing myself to other competitors. And I know that I really shouldn’t be doing that. My start can’t be compared to someone who’s been on a lifestyle change for the past two years.

For the life of me I know I’ve got no upper body strength and it’s taken me forever to get some sort of definition in my biceps. So I do feel a smidge envious when members post pictures of their biceps, because I also want sleek sexy arms and no flabby chicken wings.

So that’s all I have to do. Keep pushing through these 22 days, take the after photos and be happy with the results that I have achieved during the 100 healthy days. Because at the end of the day these are my achievements and my body. Not someone elses.