Blogging Birthday

Skate Fast, Turn Left is three years old today! I’ve really loved writing this blog, it’s given me an emotional and creative outlet. It’s given me the opportunity to connect with other writers and to follow and read some wonderfully written blogs. 

I’ve had dry spells in my writing and days where I’m brimming with ideas and the need for my fingertips to touch the keyboard. It’s been a balance. Right now I’m in a limbo of wanting to write but not wanting to write drivel. 

And so, I leave you with this question today; do you plan your blog posts ahead of time or fly by the seat of your pants? 

Whatever the answer, I look forward to reading your next post!

Sparkling

Now and then there are days I like to refer to as Unicorn Parenting Days. I call them this because several things will happen that are unusual and blissful to parents. For instance, this morning the kids sat quietly eating their breakfast, I pooped alone and I drank my cup of tea whilst it was still hot! This my friends, is the start of a Unicorn Parenting Day!

These days aren’t quite as mystical and rare as unicorns, but when you’re going through a rough patch, say with teething, restless kids or sickness, these little events are magical!

So to all the parents out there, I hope you have a day that is as awesome as a unicorn farting glitter whilst leaping over a rainbow with clouds showering you in lottery winnings! 

Conflict

I’m not a very argumentative person… Okay, I can be argumentative when it’s something I’m passionate about or I’m defending myself/family or friends, but most of the time I avoid conflict. 

Last year it truly felt like everyone was offended by everything, and with the Internet at their fingertips, their outrage was shared with everyone who happened to scroll by. This year the arguments are politically charged with the presidential election approaching and to be honest, it’s quite scary. Not just because the candidates are a bunch of idiots with some questionable ideas, but their supporters are equally, if not more terrifying in their beliefs. 

I try not to discuss politics with people as I have often gotten the comment that I shouldn’t be interested in US politics as I can’t vote… But that is ridiculous. I live here, my family are American citizens, the choices made politically, effect them as well as myself. 

The scariest thing about all of the political talk though, is discovering that people I thought I knew well, have some interesting views that I just can’t gel with. And as this post title says, conflict is afoot and is something I try to avoid! I’ve found myself deleting people from Facebook in order to avoid ruining those relationships completely.

I was angry at myself the other day. I was angry because I politely nodded in agreement when a friend discussed his views on the family unit. Specifically the roles women play. He stated that women should stay home with the family and that to work is selfish, it takes away from the children and from the husband who depends on her to stay home and take care of the kids and the house… I’m a stay at home mom, luckily my husband works bloody hard for that to be a possibility, but he also supports me going back to work if I would like to. I also have friends who work and their inportance as a parent and as wife isn’t diminished by that. 

I should have argued the point. So to my fellow women, who stay home or work or work from home, I’m sorry.

Rules

 Today I watched just a few minutes of roller derby before realizing that even if I were to go back after these many years, I’d be completely lost rules wise. So much has changed since my last game in 2012 and honestly, I’m not sure I’m into the new style of roller derby that is being played and all the rule changes that go with it. It’s evolved, I get that.

Many years ago, in a galaxy far, far away. Photo credit: David Costa

 

Draft

There’s a draft that has been sitting in my folder since the early days following my fathers dead. I’m not sure if I will ever publish it, even though I’ve reread it so many times. Maybe I should just delete it… after all, the words are burnt into my memory, I can still feel them being typed out under my fingertips, I can sense their release and then their entrapment.

Journaling

I’ve got a bit of an obsession with notebooks. I love hard cover, ring bound notebooks with college ruled lines and clean, uniform design. Simple is good, but a modern, minimalistic design always grabs my attention. 

I always set out with specific goals in mind when I buy a new notebook. I assign them to list making, idea jotting and general purpose. I just bought a new notebook and I think it’s my favorite one. So far I’ve marked two pages with my scrawls and I always feel the same way about that… Like I want to keep the pages pristine. But a notebook is for notes after all, they have a purpose.

I’ve been thinking about using a notebook for journaling, although most of the time I write here. I’m trying to realign myself with some spiritual need and although I could share those musings here, perhaps it would be best to keep them private.

The reason I love notebooks most of all, is that from arm to hand, to pen to paper, there is a flow. I love to see my thoughts move from my mind to the paper, tangible, palpable words. 

Lines, Dots and The Squiggles In-between

Parenting is definitely a learning curve, that looks something like a crayon squiggle across a brightly colored wall. So maybe it’s not a curve, but it sure has its ups and downs.

I’m learning a lot about myself in the process of raising these two tiny human beings. I’m realizing things about my personality, my approach to life and really feeling more connected to my emotions in the process. And trust me, for a British person to be sharing as much as I have about my feelings, is a big bloody deal!

Calvin is teaching me every day. He’s made me more patient, more understanding and shifted my perspective on what parenting would be like. We are taking this journey together. For example, today he went running off across the field at the park. Usually he doesn’t go far and knows that he needs to stay where I can see him. But in an effort to keep up with some squirrels, my calls to him to turn his little butt back around, fell on deaf ears. I chased after him. My immediate response was that I should be angry and tell him off. Then he opened his mouth and the excitement as he told me why he had run away made me put the breaks on. I listened. And although I still told him off for running and not listening when I called, we also discussed his interest in the squirrels and also the dangers of him being out of my sight. I could have blown up, him not listening really pushes my buttons. But I’m learning.

Mia although she can’t speak, is teaching me the power of communicating in different ways. She is the most communicative child I have met without having to say a single word. The looks on her face, her bodily response, speak volumes. It’s making me more aware of my own body language and behaviors. When I approach the kids with love, I want it to really show, and when I approach them with discipline, I want my expression to read as stern and not frightening as I fear it does right now.

Creative Bloggers and Tantrumming Threenagers

If you are following my blog, thank you! I often follow back and really enjoy the content I read. One particular blog that I started following just a few days ago is Forged From Reverie which is written by a friend of mine. I love the creativity of the writers I follow. From writing about life events to short stories and poems, there is always something interesting to read.

On a different note, Curtis and I experienced our toughest parenting moment this past week. The manipulating attitude of a three-year old. Calvin has never been a great sleeper, but he has consistently slept through the night, with the occasional bad dream since about 18 months old. This past week however, he decided to use his sisters night waking as an excuse to proclaim that he hated his bed, the floor (which he chose to sleep on), his room and us. It came to head when he decided half an hour into bedtime, to kick and scream to the extent of a new decibel being reached. At first, we tried reasoning with him, which temporarily calmed him down. Then we had to get tough. Eventually he put himself to sleep around 2am and has since, slept through the night.

That has to have been one of the most unpleasant experiences so far as a parent. He is one strong-willed, spirited child. But the manipulation and fake excuses and crying, had to stop. I’m glad that he finally calmed himself down and I’m happy that he isn’t saying he hates us anymore (when did I get a teenager instead of a three-year old!?). Screw the terrible two’s, three is a whole new game!