So many emotions .. no time to process

1 Jan

What a shitshow this year has been.

Last year was difficult. At least one out of the three kids was sick every other week. One need an operation, one broke a bone. And then the pandemic hit.

Thankfully – everyone is relatively healthy.

I haven’t had the time to really process this year – all the difficult emotions. The immense loss, fear, frustration, isolation, anger. I feel like I am going to need years of therapy to process 2020 and possibly 2021.

I’ve been lucky – we’ve been lucky. We have a roof over our head, food on the table, our health and I even rejoined the workforce in the middle of the pandemic.

But still – the mental load of taking care of a family, being the household CEO with zero time off, zero time to recharge my dead batteries, being needed 24/7 for months when we were all locked down together is a whole different level then the most difficult period of my life – when I was going through fertility treatments to have children.

I wake up knowing that my disposition will affect my kids and my partner. It is mentally taxing to know that I can’t have a shitty day alone – I must be patient and calm so my household won’t turn into a crying, yelling mess.

I turned 40 in 2020 and it was the most pathetic birthday even for one who hates celebrating her birthday. It was right in the beginning of the first lockdown – so nothing was open, no one was delivering anything. My partner tried to celebrate the momentous occasion but with no one open – it was impossible. We had a low key celebration with just our family (which was lovely) but… I had big plans for celebrating this birthday. And I missed celebrating with my besties.

When I was a kid, I just couldn’t picture 2020. It sounded so … I don’t even know. Futuristic. I could grasp 2019 but 2020…. just couldn’t wrap my head around 2020. All I know is that it was a good thing I couldn’t picture 2020 – because no one could have imagined *this*.

So if this past week isn’t a metaphor, I don’t know what is. It started off with one kid coming down with a fever, then being diagnosed with hand, foot and mouth disease. Then less than two hours later, picking up the other toddler who came down with a high fever. Oh, and then we pulled the eldest out of gan in case they too caught the virus.

It’s been a rough week. With very little sleep but lots of smiles and cuddles. My kids are pretty happy (even when sick) – and for that, we are truly blessed.

And today, on the first day of 2021, I have hope. Because we are starting off the new year with two out of the three back to themselves and back in school (with approval from their Dr).

Light. I see light at the end of this tunnel.

Vaccines. 10% of my local population has already received their first dose.

2021, you bring me hope.

And lots of therapy.

Oh, and I beg of you – sleep.

My Chocolate Gvina Levana Cake

10 Sep

This past weekend, I promised my family that we would celebrate their new beginnings with a cake. All 3 kids returned to school – and they were all in new ganim. 

Saturday rolled around and I forgot about the cake until I was lying in bed having my Sat afternoon nap (yes, it is still a thing around here, thank the Lord).

When I woke up, my eldest joined me around the table and she reminded me that we were supposed to bake a cake. I tried to brush it off – but realized, no, Mama made a promise and I keep my promises no matter how much I’d rather do something else.

And of course, baking with eldest was delightful. Here is what we made together.

Chocolate Gvina Levana cake

My chocolate gvina levana cake is based on recipe from The Cafe Sucre Farine

8” round pan, lined with baking sheet – preheat oven 175C 

Ingredients

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup cocoa powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 cup gvina levana
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • ½ cup canola oil or other mild tasting oil

Directions:

  • Sift flour and cocoa powder into bowl. Ensure a light and fluffy cake. Don’t skip this step! 
  • Add baking powder, salt and sugar – mix with fork/whisk to combine dry ingredients 
  • Create well in the middle of dry ingredients – add wet ingredients (eggs, gvina levana, oil, and vanilla extract) 
  • Mix – but only in ONE direction. Always mix in one direction to keep the cake from getting dense. 

Once combined, pour into a lined round baking pan. 

Bake for 37 minutes. Let it cool on a cooling rack before eating. 

 

Update on life – it’s been a while

7 Sep

Where do I even begin? It’s been over a year since I last updated this blog. I haven’t forgotten you, I’m just not as keen as I once was about sharing my life.

I don’t know when that began – my internet silence. Once upon a time, I was an open book (on the internet). Now … I am a lurker. I consume but I rarely contribute content. Maybe it is all the noise on the web. Maybe it is the lack of time.

Either way – the need to share my life with internet strangers is gone. Those of you reading / following this blog aren’t strangers to me. So here is a little update.

I have 3 kids – two girls and a boy. One set of twins. All from IVF. I guess all those times I worried about getting pregnant were for naught (you gotta keep your humour even after your infertility/fertility journey).

We bought our own flat in our town. I can’t believe we managed to do this – without struggling. I mean, we saved, we got some help and we did it. Took us 5 years  to do it. We bought a starter flat – so we looked for something that we could move into with minimal updates. Painted the flat, put hardwood floors into the living room (swoon), put in screens on all the windows and added a few more cabinets in the kitchen.

We moved in Nov 2019 and it took a while to feel like home. Probably started to feel like home around May – almost 2 months into our isolation due to Covid 19 pandemic.

Man, this pandemic. Most of the time I’m mentally okay with the situation – but right now, today, my chest feels tight. I am anxious and worried – will our government / will the world’s governments actually get us out of this pandemic or is this our new status quo.

As a high risk individual – this pandemic hits close to home. I am terrified of how my body will react if I catch it. But life goes on – the kids are in school. And we are keeping our network of those we come into contact at the bare minimum. I have two new nieces, haven’t met them.  I don’t think I saw my sisters pregnant and we all live in the same country.

Sigh. 2019-2020 has been rough thus far and it ain’t over just yet. I am sure there is another dumpster fire just lurking behind the shadows, around the corner.

At least we have each other. Our health. Our loved ones are healthy and safe.

I can ‘t wait to re-read this post-pandemic and say, not only we survived but we thrived. We slowed down. We made wonderful family memories.

When did I start to see the world as a glass that is half full instead of half empty?

Oh yes, when we came out of our 3.5 years of hell trying to conceive. If I could survive that, I will survive this damn pandemic.