Charlie's Bird

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

Archive for family

Happy Birthday Pops!

My dad turns 80 today! Fighting fit, but sad and forgetful. What an achievement!

I am so honored to have him as part of our lives!

Born in the rural Eastern Cape, around the time of the Second World War, he grew up without his own dad around, he was fighting in North Africa, and when this stranger came home, he wasn’t so sure of him. He was educated to matric which was also quite something in those days, but there was no money for anything more, and he was sent to JHB with £10 and an address of an uncle to stay with until he’d found work and his feet. He started work on the mines, worked his way up, got educated, met my mom, and made a life for all of us.

He’s taught me several things – moderation is important, be sensible, work hard and apply yourself to everything you take on. He also instilled in me the value of an education. Lately he’s demonstrated the devotion of lifelong marriage, through thick and thin; and the value of friendships – maintain them, be a friend to others, be an active member of a community.

Refueling

…while my weekend was really busy, I have been blessed with some really positive events that helped refuel my tank. There was some running, there was some winning, there was some real joy!

On Friday night we celebrated my father’s birthday – a few of his friends were able to join us and I think that Pops has a good night. He’s 80 on Wednesday, quite an achievement! Unfortunately, my brother was due to be there too, but someone left booking his flight too late, so he couldn’t get down in time for Friday, but arrived on Saturday, which was great. My dad, despite knowing that he was coming down, had forgotten (really!) and was super surprised and, I think, really loved seeing him.

Saturday I had to drive down to the neighboring city – there was an obgyn meeting, and I was presenting a topic, which I did actually enjoy. I love doing a literature review, putting a presentation together and learning!

While I was in the other city, Thandi attended her ballet prize giving ceremony – to her (and my) delight; she passed her ballet exam with distinction and thus was awarded a ballet badge to wear on her uniform next year; and then won the picture prize for musicality! Her little friend pointed out to me repeatedly that it was ‘the biggest picture of them all!’ She was beaming. Roll around Sunday and the tap and modern prize giving where she won a trophy, for the most promising pre-grade dancer! so chuffed with herself! I know all parents do think their kids are special and the best, but it was nice to see that someone else validated my opinion! 😉

On Sunday we also had the huge pleasure of participating in a very special fun run – our local newspaper hosted their annual fun run, and an initiative was launched by the disability organizations, that #wecanrun, and we were involved in pushing wheelchairs, guiding the disabled, piggybacking, and allowing to participate. It was so humbling and inspiring. I think it felt better than finishing 2 Oceans this year, helping the team finish and seeing the joy and pleasure on everyone’s faces. Loved it!

Settling back down

…time to get back into the rhythms and routines of everyday life. Although is an OBGYN’s life ever routine? This week I have had 2 early morning deliveries, one was while I was still sweaty and stinky after a run, today I at least managed to sprint through the shower before getting to the hospital to catch that one. Phew!

I am trying to get the running routine established again; my running confidence isn’t great, but I am plodding forward and starting to maybe feel a few positives. I have gone back to my weekly dancing class and had a good session with my personal trainer at the gym. I really need to just keep the stretching, core and proprioception work going now. I am realising that neglecting that side has done my running NO favours! Diet still needs to settle down – it seems my quest for the perfect tick toffee pudding in Scotland has left me with a well activated sweet tooth again; but I can feel already, my body is starting to want me to eat better, with the increase in the running.

Thandi has settled back down well at school. She has lost her first front tooth to much excitement. She is preparing for her dancing exams – ballet, tap and modern – poor kid! There is also a school concert coming up, so they are learning their songs for that. She is reading so well! On holiday we read Harry Potter aloud to her, but she read a Roald dahl on her own, and read The Wickedest witch herself. Amazing!

Charlie is settling back down to business; and is also starting to think about running – we have signed up to do the RB Africa Wild Coast Challenge together in February next year; and considering its 110km over 3 days, we need to get fit!

From next week I hope to get my blogging back to scheduled writings! Lots on the cards, lots to talk and think about. 2017 is almost done, let’s make the most of it!

Preparedness

…something I struggle with. I really wish I could emulate those people that get things done weeks in advance; minimise their stress. But right now I am struggling. Things seem to creep up on me and I am left stressed and floundering. Flip! The next 3 weeks before we depart for Scotland are going to be hectic! I still need to secure my Spanish Visa, but fortunately I am not too stressed about that. Our UK one arrived on Friday. Phew!

Thandi’s ballet show is this week, my princess is the cutest bunny ever! I am so impressed with her! She has coped well with her practices, and has even done a few practices at home. They are seriously cute! Their make up is being done by a face painter, and it is so super effective! As soon as I get the go ahead I will post a picture here.

My training is also ramping up in this month before the marathon. My running stats are not looking great, and I know I need a bit more time on my legs, so I am prioritising the running for now. I am tired though, so I can see a lot of caffeine in my future. I managed a 2 part  Kriel run yesterday (named for a friend who has this ability to get home, and then decide to head out again- crazy stuff!); so I ran 10 with a friend, then after breakfast, took Charlie and Thandi (on their bikes) and the dogs (on leashes with me) for a run down to the park – some play time, some fun, then it was the trek home. The Squiff dog was exhausted and almost had to be dragged. But on the whole a good experience for everyone! I was impressed with my endurance! Although this morning the legs were a bit tired and protested on the hills.

HBD Charlie!

…so this weekend we celebrated Charlie’s 45th birthday; or as I liked to tease him; half way to 90! And when you put it that way, its a bit scary. Chances are good we have already lived half our lives! Really? Really? I know the whole Business Women’s Association awards thing kinda made me reassess things, but once again I am reminded that it really does go by in a flash; and I think we must always be clear on where we are going in life, be clear about our goals, because before you’ve realised it, it’s too late! Thanks for that reality check, my love!

The weekend felt jam packed! On Friday night Charlie, Thandi and I had a quiet dinner out to celebrate the birthday boy. That was nice and it was good to relax with a glass of wine after a really busy week. Saturday started with a fabulous run – pain free, I felt like I could run forever! Then it was onto the first birthday of a friend’s little girl, for whom I made that cake – so much fun to see such cute little people playing and having fun! Saturday afternoon I pottered in the kitchen – baking a cake for Charlie’s birthday celebration and prepped some gourmet boerie rolls for supper while watching the Springbok game.

Sunday started with another run. The polar opposite to Saturday’s run – the pace was fast, probably a little too fast for me, my legs were tired and after about 5 km the calves started to cramp up again – I struggled through 15km, but had tears along the way. I was soooo frustrated! I guess I will have to get some more dry needling done again! Aitog! Anyway, I dusted myself off and then prepared for Charlie’s lunch – a roast leg of lamb and all the trimmings – totally divine and indulgent! Followed by a cheese board and then a scrumptious apple and pear cake with a salted caramel drizzle. Yumyumyum!

And now it’s monday, and the diet must start again – just once I have had this slice of cake with my tea…

So where am I

…in this journey of mine?

Our German friends are leaving on Monday. We were away with them in the Karoo over the weekend, they continued their break and got back yesterday. They’re staying with us, and it is all a little intense right now. I am not looking forward to them leaving.

I need to sort out the visas for our trip – Spanish and UK for me, UK for Charlie and Thandi. Although, if Charlie sorted out his passport then I wouldn’t need to sort that one out.

My dad continues to be miserable. Depressed, sad and lost. I am still out of ideas there.

My running is ok. I am needing to start to increase the mileage; the Loch Ness Marathon is in 11 weeks. I can do this!

My headaches are a bit better. It appears that they have been largely caused by my latest ailment – hypertension. It’s a diagnosis I am extremely pissed off about – I am fit, only slightly overweight, eat well, exercise well and only battle with work stress. Grrr… But I am more than happy to take the treatment, because it has helped my head, and I have seen the ravages of what hypertension in Dawny.

 

58

year anniversary. Today would have been my parents 58th anniversary…

A lifetime of love and family. Dad and I both had a weep yesterday, he’s so lost without you; and I can’t fix him. He, like me, is wrapped up in what he perceives other people’s opinions of him to be – I’m a burden, I’m a third wheel, I’m a nuisance; I hate feeling like this. And I keep trying to figure what you would stay to him, how you would have motivated him to pick himself up and rise again. I’ve begged, I’ve pleaded, I’ve nagged; I’m not winning. Mom, help me please…

(This photo was taken of the AYPA (Anglican Young People’s Association), where my parents met – 60 years ago. Pops in the front row, seated on chairs on the far left, and Dawny back row, 6th)