An untimely meeting

Yip, that’s our car in that photo above. On Tuesday, on our way to take Ethan to the doctor, we had an untimely meeting with a motorbike.

We were on our way to Panorama Medical Centre to see the paediatrician because Ethan was (and still is) vrek sick. We came to an intersection where we had to turn right. Mark slowed down because the traffic light was red. On his right, was a car turning into the road we were in but behind him was a motorbike, in a hurry to get somewhere. He overtook the car in the bend, accelerated and fucked into our car. Luckily Mark saw him taking the bend and tried to swerve out of the way but because there was a car in the lane next to us, he couldn’t avoid him.

All I remember is Mark saying something along the lines of “look at this idiot”, I glanced up from my phone and saw this blue object hurtling towards us. I heard the metal scraping and an oofh as the man hit the car. I sat there for a few seconds trying to process what had just happened. Then Harper gave a cry, Mark tried to open his door and couldn’t and I jumped out to check on the kids.

Bike, meet car

I opened the back door, made sure Ethan and Harper was fine and shouted at the motorcyclist. I am ashamed that I shouted at him but all I can put it down to is shock. I shouted “My kids are in the car!! My kids!! What were you thinking?!!” and then 2 seconds later, “Are you okay?!?

He was not okay. He had gotten up after falling, collected his boot that had fallen off and went to sit on the grass on the side of the road. I went to him and asked him again if he’s okay. He said he couldn’t move his arm but other than that, he was fine. It looked like he might have dislocated his arm but when Mark called this morning, he was told that he had broken bones and couldn’t work or do anything with that arm for 6 weeks. I tried to call the ambulance, or the police or any freaking emergency service but I just could not get hold of anyone. 2 minutes after the incident occurred, the rapid response was on the scene and took over. They were a massive help and kept everyone calm. They helped us get the information we need for the insurance and even called our insurance for us to inform them of the accident.

Smashed front

I am so grateful that the damage was minimal and mostly only to the vehicle. I am grateful that we weren’t injured. I am grateful that the children were buckled up and safely in the backseat. I am grateful that Mark had the sense to try to swerve because the bike and driver would’ve hit us head on. I am grateful that we chose to change our insurance a month ago and now have an amazing broker that helped us even more.

Mark is depressed and worrying about his other baby. He just wants his car fixed up to the way it was and back where it belongs.

The kids were checked out by the doctor, as we decided to go to our appointment any way. However, I’m struggling a bit today with my back and pelvis. Not sure if it’s related to the accident or if it’s just pain residue from the last time my back was sore. Guess I need to go have it checked out. Ai.

My Mother’s Day and Embrace

Gosh I wish this blogging thing was easier. I’m stuck and I can’t seem to find a way out. But I’m not here to moan (even I’m tired of my moaning).

Mother’s Day was a week ago and I still think about the day I had. It was our third Mother’s Day without my mom and it hasn’t gotten easier yet. I doubt it ever will. My memories are filled with the things we did together, things she said to me, all the advice she gave me, and how she helped me through 2 pregnancies. I also spent an hour of my morning at Karl Bremer Hospital celebrating Mother’s Day Connect.

It was incredible, emotional, heart-breaking and so overwhelming. I went into that hospital not knowing what to expect. I was nervous because I didn’t know what I could say to a new mother. I was overwhelmed because I didn’t know what to expect or in which ward I would end up in. But I needn’t to have worried. The team leaders Tracey Porter and Lindsay-Leigh Thomas were so good at settling everyone and calmly explaining what we should do.

Each mom received a goodie bag filled to the brim with necessities and spoils. I got to meet a mom who had the most gorgeous twins. I met another mom who’s baby was in the NICU and she couldn’t hold him. I saw a mom who had just lost her baby. It broke me and yet also kinda made me stronger. It made me grateful for what I have. It put into perspective how privileged we are and how we take that for granted. Thank you Julie Mentor for starting Embrace and joining us to celebrate moms in all forms. I had such a wonderful time celebrating those moms and walked away stronger and more determined to live intentionally.

My mom isn’t here for me to tell her how this day changed me. She’s not here for me to tell her how much I love her and how badly I miss her some days. She’s not here to love on my babies and give them kisses and chocolates. She would’ve asked me about the mom’s at the hospital and asked me how I was feeling and tried to make me feel better by feeding me lol. I am grateful that she made me into the person I am today. But I’m not sad, I have an incredible mother in law who loves me as her own. She loves my babies and she’s always there for me when I need her. Love your mommies hard, tell them how grateful you are for them.

Silver linings

Staring at the blank screen, waiting for the right words to come. Worrying if the words I write will resonate with anyone who reads it or cause many to judge me. Wanting to get the words out of my head and hopefully find some quiet but so scared that someone will find fault and give me hell for it. For me, this is a constant struggle both for my blog and in my life. Wanting to voice my opinion and not be judged for it. Second guessing myself and everything I say so that I don’t offend anyone. I don’t always get it right and I’m glad I’ve reached a point in my life now where it doesn’t bother me too much when people find fault. I’m still learning how to let go and be brave but I’m trusting that I’ll get there soon.

Things feel a bit deurmekaar in my life lately. I feel like I’m not keeping all the balls up and it’s driving me slowly crazy. Add to that the fact that the kids haven’t been well and I’ve been on and off with some gastro bug, makes things seem impossible.

There is always a silver lining, we just need to keep a look out for it. For me, it would be the belly laughs from Harper, or the sneaky smile and massive hug I get from Ethan, or Matthew trying to squeeze the life out of me. Or just that hand on my shoulder or quick glance in my direction from Mark while the kids are in the bath or I’m putting Harper to sleep.

I’m grateful for my struggles as they make me stronger, grateful for my husband and family for they keep me grounded, grateful for my children because they made me a mom, and I’m grateful I get to spend my days with the amazing people I have in my life.

Simple birthday party and a scare

It’s been a long 3 weeks guys. I felt like something was missing. A piece of me. I needed the break because it seems like the first anniversary of my mom’s passing hit me harder than I thought. The ideas were there, in my head, bouncing around and fighting to get out. I just couldn’t face coming here yet and putting those words down. But I’m back! And I’m sorry that I took off without a word. This first post will be a catch up on Matthew’s birthday.

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I decided not to do a ‘proper’ themed, décor’d, party for Matthew’s 6th birthday. We went minimalist with cake and sweets for the children and snacks for the adults. Matthew got to decide what kind of cake he wanted and I decided on the rest. He wanted a Spiderman cake (again) and I got the BEST person out there (I’m hinting here, Melissa) to bake his cake. Melissa has baked our cakes since Matthew’s 4th birthday and makes the most delicious looking (and tasting) cakes ever. Pity she’s retired for a bit but I’m hoping she will be around with Ethan’s next birthday. Anyway, where was I? Oh yes, Matthew got his cake and I decided on the pool party. We had it by my dad, because of the pool obviously.

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The children really had the best time. I didn’t do themed décor (we didn’t even have a birthday banner), there were no extra cakes besides the birthday cake, and you know what? There was enough. I didn’t get to take many photos as I tried to be as present as possible and not stuck behind the camera or with my phone in my hand all the time.

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Later the evening, the men decided to start the fire and makes potjies for supper. The kids were dressed and warm and running around outside playing in the yard. There were about 4 men outside watching the children. The ladies were inside playing doll with one of my friend’s babies. I was chatting to my friend and Mark was holding the baby. I see him telling me something but I ignore him because we’re mid conversation. It hits me then that he’s shouting something at me. “KIM! ETHAN IS IN THE POOL!!!” It took me a few seconds to grasp what he was saying and yet I still moved to the yard like I was wading through honey.

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I get outside and I see Ethan standing next to the pool, dripping wet. My cousin is in the water, soaking wet. Only then did it sink in what was happening and I moved. I grabbed Ethan, pulled his wet clothing off. He was coughing at this stage. I took him inside to dry him, take his nappy off and dress him in warm clothing. He was still coughing. I’m drying him and he’s coughing. I put him on the ground to stand so I can dry him properly and his legs give in. I don’t think anything of it and stand him up again. Again he falls down, as if his legs can’t hold him up. That’s when I panic. I shout for Mark and tell him we need to take Ethan to the ER. WE rush out of the house, me apologising to our guests that we’re having to leave them to fend for themselves.

We eventually get to the hospital. It only took just under 10 minutes but it felt like forever. And guess what? There is a freaking shift change happening and we have to wait! After a half hour wait, we’re eventually called in. By now, I’ve calmed down a bit, thinking that the nurses and the doctor are going to call me an over protective mother and I’m wasting my medical aid and my time. I managed to not let that deter me from finding out if Ethan is okay. The doctor sees Ethan and says everything sounds good in his lungs and that he’s fine. I must’ve looked a bit dubious because he said he wants to send Ethan for x-rays but it’s just a precaution and he doesn’t think anything will show up. We head to x-rays and after a short wait, get called in. I must mention here that I was so proud of this child! He sat on the machine and didn’t make a peep. He did what the lady asked of him exactly as she wanted (I was expecting tears, screams and loads of kicking).

We get back to the doctor and he is very happy with the x-rays. He calls me around to come have a look at the pictures, showing me there are no black spots (indicating water in his lungs) and that I can rest easy now. The relief was such that I felt I was going to faint right there.

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Smiling and happy after the incident

On our way back home, I realise why I was so frantic and panic stricken. Not a week earlier, I had read of a mother and her son. Her son, Natey, had passed away just after Christmas last year by drowning in their home pool. You can read the story here. I was so moved and heartbroken by Jane’s story, that it stayed with me (I still think of them every day). I realised how close we came to the same thing happening to us. Even though there were 4 people outside, Ethan still managed to slip into the pool unnoticed, not making a sound. If my friend’s son hadn’t said that Ethan is in the pool and he wants to get in too, I think this story would’ve ended differently. I am grateful that nothing serious happened to Ethan. I am grateful to my cousin for fishing Ethan out of the pool. I am grateful that this happened so that I could open my eyes to how quickly (and quietly) things like this happen.

The kids threw blocks and other floaty things into the pool during the day. We think that Ethan was trying to get one of the blocks in the pool and slipped in. We have no idea how long he was in the water. We have no idea if he swallowed any of the water. All we know is that we’re really lucky to have survived this time and that it is imperative that Ethan gets swimming lessons.

If you only take one thing away from this post, please let it be one of these.

  1. That accidents happen in a split second.
  2. That children can slip into water unnoticed, right under your nose.
  3. That all our kids need to be able to at least float and swim to safety should they fall into a pool.
  4. That yes, it CAN happen to you!

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Have you ever had an experience similar to this? Or have you had a “ag it will never happen to me” moment and then it did happen? I’d love to hear your story and learn from it.

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