Charlie's Bird

living the dream with Charlie and Thandi and chirping all the way back to the nest.

Archive for November, 2016

Emotional day…

…today my Dad turns 79! He is incredible! Having only retired 18 months ago, he has taught me all about hard work; but I hope tom learn some lessons from both him and my Mom in terms of how one ages.

My Mom has struggled with her health for the last 16 years. The first time she experienced a heart issue which required admission to hospital was in 2000; since then – cardioversion for atrial fibrillation (x2), triple vessel bypass and valve replacement (2007), hip fracture (x2), and now just a very frail old lady, who is deaf and stubborn. She really has been reduced to a shell of her former self, and can no longer really do any of the things that used to give her joy – sewing, embroidery, knitting, reading, cooking… It’s very sad to witness. It’s also frustrating to watch her, being frustrated with her failing body.

My Dad, hale and hearty, healthy, no chronic health problems – he had a hip replacement electively about 1 year ago; however since his retirement he has retired to his lazy boy chair (god, why are those things so damn ugly?) and watches TV and does soduko puzzles. Not much else. There is no interaction with anybody outside of the home. He sits with a simmering resentment since his retirement travel plans have been scuppered by my Mom’s health. He cannot think of anything else to do and so he sits.

What happened to them? They were both involved members of our community – my Dad was mayor of this town, my Mom was involved in various charity works – Child welfare, CANSA, jersey week – you name it, she did it. Yes, many of their friends have passed away; some have moved away; but I am stunned by quite how isolated and lonely they are. But it does seem to be very much by choice. And it’s not the choice I would make for myself in their shoes. And I guess that is what makes it so hard for me and my brothers. We don’t understand, and similarly they don’t understand my desperation for them.

I’ve tried everything – learn to play Bridge, Walk for Life, help me with the deli’s books, help Charlie with his business, take your granddaughter for a stroll… the answer is always a stubborn “I’ll think about it…” which we all know means no… Damnit, ageing isn’t for sissies, but neither is watching them age.

So today, on his 79th birthday, I am so sad… sad for what my beautiful parents have become, sad because they say no…


Migraine diaries

…so there were highlights and then there was a migraine…

  • Interview went well, I think we have a new Nox.
  • The cook off was great fun, with a nightmare protein for me – pork – which I don’t really eat much, and have never cooked. The green peppers made Cuban pork with black beans and rice – it turned out really well, and we enjoyed prepping and eating! We did a cuban dessert too – making a flan, yum!
  • The call was fine.

Then, in a haze, 1am on Sunday morning, I was roused from a superficial slumber with pain, nausea and a haze that endured for the day… A debilitating experience that reduces me to an aching brain. And today leaves me ever so slightly photophobic and auditory defensive.


…are what I am running on. Yoh! I feel like I am out of gas. And every morning, I wake up, wondering if I am going to get through this day, but (this week) I’ve pulled up my panties, thrown on my running shoes and hit that tar. I am, today, feeling shattered. It doesn’t help that my entire practice is away – 2 are at a congress, 1 is at a graduation in Edinburgh – so I am it. In other words the weekend on call is looming.

In more exciting news, this weekend is also our book club Christmas function, and we are having a bit of a cook off. I’m not sure who remembers that BBC show Ready, Steady, Cook, Ainsley hosted it – 2 teams – red tomatoes, green peppers and a bag (or in our case, box) of mysterious ingredients; and from that box, with a basic pantry, we will have to produce 2 courses. Our husbands and our cheffy friend, who is providing the boxes, will judge the best meals. It’s a bit like the master chef Mystery Box challenge. So here’s hoping we have some fun with that. I am sure with wine (not for the on call me though) and much laughter we will have a blast!

Enjoy your weekends, you beautiful people!


…Changes… are coming.

Ok, so I think I can share some news with you – as of 1 March 2017, I will have a new associate in my practice – taking us up to a total of 3 OBGYNs doing deliveries in my practice. So I go from a 1 in 2 call roster to 1 in 3, which I promise makes a HUGE difference. Also, I get to take leave with less guilt – going away and leaving 1 person to hold the fort is really tricky. And I get to train without having to carry my phone around so much! I am so so so happy!

And then the news that has made me sad – Noxy has decided that she must make this move, to take care of her own children, which we understand, but leaves us heartbroken… Saying goodbye to someone who has been as reliable as she has, as kind, honest and caring as she is, is going to be very hard. I am dreading how we will break the news to Thandi one day… I get that people come and go, but my little girl is as sensitive as her mother, and I know how tough an adjustment this is going to be.

So 2017, let’s do this!


…weekend it was! From runs to meals to parties, phew!

Friday night was a quiet one, fortunately – we chilled at home, before my WWOTR training run on Saturday morning. What a good run it was, although very hot! I have discovered the joy that is toe socks, and am convinced that they will save my toes. I bid farewell to the nail that was hanging on by a thread on Saturday after the run, and so now the new one must grown, but I think I will be better off in the future with my toe socks! 15km with the girls – lots of laughing, lots of fun, always good.

After the run, there was a Christmas market to go and have a browse around, and then a birthday party for certain young lady to attend – off we went to a pony party, it looked like lots o fun was had by all, and the girls all loved their pony ride. In the evening, once again, I collapsed in a heap! It had been hectic! Sunday dawned another perfect day, so I took myself off for a run, met my family at our local breakfast spot – the only problem being that I am generally not very hungry by the time I get there… Anyway, breakfast, nippers for T, which was really leaker yesterday, because that weather was so gorgeous – and the kids started learning about boogy boarding! Then, we needed some groceries and finally I got home! Phew! Lupper was prepped, before I finally got to sit down! a quick braai in the early evening with my parents rounded out the weekend. It was good to see them, although every time I see my mom, my heart breaks a little more… She’s such a frail Dawny now, it’s so tough to see it…

Anyway, and now it is monday – up and at it, kids!


…Bueller? Anyone? Shoowee, the blogoshpere has gone rather quiet at the moment… My reader is just so quiet. Of late though, I get the feeling blogging has almost gone out of fashion, or maybe I just need to find some new ones. Any suggestions?

Have awesome weekends, my beautiful people! I will be trail running, and trying hard to hold onto my toenails…

Running changes

…everything! While I am still slightly reluctant to get out bed in the mornings, it is lighter and the habit is forming, and I have had a good month! Yay!

I have been battling some frustrating injuries, many because of under training and then trying to do too much, but I have for a while suspected my shoes may be aiding and abetting the situation. Dryland confirmed that for me, so I have made a change, and this morning for the first time I have run in my new shoes – Nike free Distance. They have a much lower profile than my previous shoes, and I am so excited, because my run was good this morning! Yay!

And aren’t they just beautiful?img_7231