Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘motherhood’ Category

New CDC recommendations released Tuesday state that all women of childbearing age should abstain entirely from alcohol, unless they use contraceptives. Come again? On first reading, one might think that they are on to something. Everyone knows that drinking during pregnancy is bad. Well…the research is actually mixed. But, aside from attempting to address the real problem of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders, which can have lasting impact on children, it makes a lot of bad assumptions about women, it’s unrealistic, and it might not be entirely evidence-based.
My first thought when reading the report was that this type of government recommendation sounds like something out of The Handmaid’s Tale. In Margaret Atwood’s 1985 dystopian novel, a theocratic dictatorship takes away women’s rights and separates them into classes. Fertile women of childbearing age are kept as handmaids for reproductive purposes by the ruling class after a large portion of the female population becomes sterile due to pollution and sexually transmitted diseases. They live under strict control of their wealthy male captors, and are treated as vessels for potential life.

From Steph on Grounded Parents with “The CDC Can Rip the Wine Glass Out of My Childbearing-Aged Hand”.

I have written about the policing of pregnant women and alcohol .. oh, once or twice before..

Compare and contrast

Light drinking during pregnancy

Mystery results

Public health message of the day: don’t trust women, especially when they’re incubating

Whenever people start talking about the “unborn child”

 

 

Read Full Post »

I read Monkey Grip (1977) by Helen Garner last year and I can’t believe that it is a) Australian and b) I’d not read it until now and c) something this good and interesting was written about single parenthood and wasn’t handed out at the door. It’s set in a very different time to now but captures well the compromises you make with difficult men and also, the possibility of freedom that exists as a single mother.

I thought about the patterns I make in my life: loving, loving the wrong person, loving not enough and too much and too long. What’ll I do? How much of myself will be left hanging in tatters when (if: I don’t want to end it) I wrench myself away this time?

Read Full Post »

One day you’re cleaning up your kids’ rooms while they’re away at their father’s and among their piles of mess you come across a list the two of them made and.. oof.. if you don’t just ache with longing for them then.

12353428_1662672967320464_2086248097_n

Writing lists about one’s family members is hereditary, apparently.

Read Full Post »

Pictures of childhood

12141803_10153685518564085_5536713881145264462_n

Me and the family dog.

My mother and brother and I in Greece.

12011120_10153685523954085_7921705022170954008_n12032960_10153685518989085_867398112554400745_n

My grandfather and I in Australia.

12088292_10153685524129085_4682687757936065691_n

Always me on horses.

12105969_10153685522764085_2194085222526634204_n

My brother and I in Iraq.

12122407_10153685523049085_5413808824867644916_n

My mother and I in Iraq.

12141520_10153685522324085_8966235540062678062_n

My brother and I in Iraq.

12144842_10153685522564085_8795489212327490885_n

My mother as a young woman.

12108717_10153684989549085_7538034216107868095_n

Read Full Post »

From the Danish.

Read Full Post »

1. Went to the art gallery the other day with my kids and I kicked it off with a joyful little sermon before leaving about how I would not be buying any food at exorbitant gallery prices and that we would be there for the long haul, touring two galleries and to take some responsibility for themselves because enough already. And you know what? They then cooked and prepared their own picnic of healthy snacks to take with them and were the talk of effing Gallery of Modern Art with their little check-in bento stack. And if I then did not bask in parental pride like I was the goddamn business.

2. Cormac, aged 6yrs: Mum are you broke at the moment?
Me: A bit, yes.
Cormac: That’s a bit suspicious, isn’t it?
Me: Why?
Cormac (smirking): I think you bought the Santa presents.

3. Oh the serenity in the evening of kids restrained from computers, suddenly let loose on screens.

4. Beautiful observation from Lauca, my 10 yr old daughter who lives half time at her dad’s house which is multi-generational and includes her 98 yr old grandmother – “She doesn’t really keep time with time anymore”.

Read Full Post »

My son Zain was born with the kind of reflux and colic that no doctor seemed able to cure. He screamed for up to eight or nine hours a day for the first twelve months of his life. There was nothing I could do but push him up and down the streets of my neighbourhood at all hours of the night and day. So much of those long hours of walking are in my next book, which doesn’t really focus on motherhood at all but rather, on a close and intimate portrayal of all those people and places I observed while walking. It wasn’t just that it was the first time in my life in which I had given myself permission to sit on a bench on the river or to hang out in a park all day and really look at those everyday things I had never taken the time to notice before, it was also that everything had so much more emotional intensity and significance than it had previously had. It doesn’t last forever but there is this crazed state you exist in, in those early months, that is something right out The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test. I remember, distinctly, standing on the Parramatta River, looking at Jamie Eastwood’s mural on the footpath which depicts the local Indigenous population trying to fight off the boats in that same place where the ferries were now coming in to dock at Parramatta Pier. The whole place seemed so heart-breakingly gorgeous and tragic in a way that I think I could never understand if I wasn’t in such a heightened emotional state. That space is now the central image that my next book revolves around. It was feeling that space in such a different way that made me realise I needed to write a book about it.  I wrote a lot during that first year of being a mother. It wasn’t the kind of long concentrated writing I had done before but I came out of it with a lot of lines scrawled on bits of paper that turned into great things some time later.

From “Who gives a shit? On motherhood and the arts” by Felicity Castagna in the Southerly Journal. 

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 5,385 other followers