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A new journey November 10, 2010

Posted by Amanda in Blogs, Observations, Personal.
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“Carry the bags” was a phrase that Chris used when we were headed overseas for six months of travelling. Sometime he’s a reluctant traveller until he is actually on his way so he complained one day that the mammoth journey wasn’t for his benefit, he was just going to carry the bags. It became a bit of a joke between us, but really the phrase has a lot more weight than just a flippant comment.

There are lots of journeys in life and we have just embarked on one from which we can never return – parenthood.

Of course the phrase ‘carry the bags’ is one that’s very applicable to any western parent because all of a sudden it seems our life has been invaded by more ‘stuff’ and more ‘bags’ than we’ve ever had before. We’re the type who travel for six months with 15 kilo backpacks and yet now we’re lucky if we can leave the house with equipment that weighs less than that.

And yet of course the blog title is also apt considering we really are on our way to destination unknown – does parenthood even have a destination? Or is that just the desperate hope that you will live to old age and die before your offspring?

Perhaps now this blog can be an occasional drop-in point for my thoughts on this trip of a lifetime.

Many of our friends were surprised, if not shocked, when we said we were having a baby. We’d managed to cultivate the impression that we were quite happy with our two cats and yearly overseas jaunts. The truth was that although there wasn’t the desperate need to have children that some people experience, it is something we had long hoped for, but for a while it didn’t seem like it would happen and we were in the process of accepting that perhaps it wasn’t meant to be.

I found out I was pregnant in February and it was a big surprise to both of us –  a pleasant one, but it was hard to believe. In fact I stayed in denial until the day our daughter Freya was born one week ago.

I had meant to blog throughout the pregnancy, but it just never happened. I was fortunate to have the easiest pregnancy of anyone I know – no sickness, no cravings, no real exhaustion. Even though I ended up having an emergency caesarean after about 24 hours of labour, I can’t even say the birth was something I look back on as being particularly eventful until the last hour or so. It was frightening when the baby’s heartbeat dropped low enough to warrant the emergency button being pushed and being rushed in to surgery but maybe the drugs have made the rest a bit of a blur.

Having never been a ‘baby’ person, I was a little concerned about how I would relate to my own child. I can’t say I’ve felt the overwhelming rush of love for my child that many seem to experience in the delivery room but it’s certainly something different and deeper than I’ve felt before. There is something special about holding this little warm bundle who is totally reliant on me.

I thought I was having that moment of ‘falling in love’ with Freya late one night when I was in hospital. I had just fed her and she was sitting in my arms looking into my eyes for what seemed like a very long time. I really was overcome with wonder that this small child was mine and she was staring into my soul. Then I realised she was actually concentrating on the enormous green production in her pants. But perhaps that’s the first lesson in how children keep you grounded.

She’s asleep now and will soon wake up needing to be fed. This isn’t the post I sat down to write but it’s an introduction to how I might use this blog from now on. I have no intention of becoming one of the myriad mummy bloggers and it’s more of a place to sort my own thoughts and make some sense of what’s happening to us.

I’m glad I called this space “Carry the Bags” so long ago. It might just be a place to dump all my mental luggage as well.



Slack July 25, 2007

Posted by Amanda in Blogs, Personal.
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Work, starting at 4am, moving house and the lack of a computer have conspired to have me neglect my blog.

I resolve to do better in the future. 

Secret lives of dresses February 23, 2007

Posted by Amanda in Blogs, Fashion.
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Ok this probably isn’t one for the boys, but if you like bitter-sweet tales from the wardrobe go here.

Blog vs Band February 12, 2007

Posted by Amanda in Blogs.

When you are in a band and play a gig with other bands, it is considered polite to stay and listen to the other acts on the bill. It is a thing that considerate musicians do.

I think that reading other people’s blogs and leaving comments is similar. I enjoy reading the blogs of people I know, but in some ways I also do it because I appreciate that they read my blog.

Maybe we just all feel like we are in the club…

Net desert February 5, 2007

Posted by Amanda in Blogs.
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I have been without the internet for a week. It turns out all I had to to do was plug it in but I thought it was a wireless connection.

Anyway. I am so reliant on this stupid thing it has been killing me. All those things I would normally just look up whenever they occur to me have had to be stored up.

What did I do before?

More on blogging January 23, 2007

Posted by Amanda in Blogs.
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Expanding on some thoughts from last night, I think blogging is like reality TV. The minutiae of other people’s live can be fascinating. Now I know that many blogs are ‘worthy’ and don’t discuss what the writer ate today but I don’t mind the ones that do just that. I like the ones that have some meaty discussion to chew on and the comfort foods of what is going on with friends who live overseas or just down the road.

To some extent, it is not such a surprise that we enjoy this sort of thing.  Part of life is talking to each other about what we and our associates have been doing or saying. It is no different to learn about a person on a blog or a program- we will get to know them soon enough if we read about or watch their lives. I have friends who I talk to about their other friends whom I have never met, but I am still interested in what is going on with these phantom acquaintances of mine.

This is the same reason why so many people love programs like Front Up and the Seven Up series. We have a little window into the lives of people who are just like us and we find it riveting.

The big blogging dilemma January 22, 2007

Posted by Amanda in Blogs.

To blog or not to blog. That is the question.

I think that this must be something that most people who write some sort of online journal or opinion page have struggled with at one time or another. Especially when your site is more or less just a personal musings space as mine is.

I often have things that I would like to write here but have second thoughts about. I am a pretty open person and most people who know me probably are aware that I am not afraid to show my emotions or say what I am thinking, but sometimes in this space I am not sure that it would be worth the hassle.

For example, there might be something bugging me about someone but is it worth me telling them and everyone else about it in this forum? Even if I write in very general terms and don’t use names, if they check my blog, they may guess it was about them. There are things that annoy us all the time that we don’t bring up with people because it is not major enough to worry about. It could be cathartic for me, but may cause more grief down the line.

Then there is the issue that, for the most part, this is a one sided process. Do I want to make myself vulnerable to anyone who happens to click here? That is ok in a relationship where all parties are being equally vulnerable but there aren’t too many people I know who are putting their thoughts online. Many of my readers don’t even leave comments because it is somehow hard to put yourself out there.

So what is the solution? I have thought about starting a secret blog as I am sure many bloggers do. But there is the thing in me that likes an audience and would I get one with a secret blog? I am sure you would all find my secret blog much more interesting but that would defeat the purpose! And anonymous writing is somehow cowardly.

So my quandry remains. There are things I would love to get off my chest but I have to weigh up the consequences. It is not an easy one to resolve.

Any thoughts?