Tiptoe, Tully and I .

collections, Mother and Child, Philosophy, Relationships

Last night as I stood at the sink washing up, I finally got an idea about my writing this week. Every six or seven weeks I go to the homeopath and initially it was for my eczema but it has helped unravel a whole lot more. Yesterday’s session peeled back another layer of the onion. The problem is, what ever ideas were flowing to me whilst I bathed the dishes in washing up liquid they are not quite streaming to me this morning as I write. I knew I should stop and write them down but the boys were bashing each other upstairs and I needed to get the pots cleared up so I could go and sort them out. The sculptor was at the studio, if you were wondering.

At bedtime, sometimes the sculptor (from a culture with a history and background of oratory) and also with his imagination tells stories from his head but more often that not it is I who reads to them every night. Except this week, I have used the consequence of their brotherly squabbles turning into tears, as a reason for them going to bed early. Which actually last night, I pondered is probably slightly counter productive, as I  think reading to them calms them down before bed. “I think left, I think right” (Dr Seuss). However, we have all been slightly under the weather so the thought of sitting in-between two snotty coughing boys was not so enticing.

This cheeky sculpture is now in Contemporary Sculpture Fulmer which opens May 12th.

tiptoe outdoors

Tiptoe, looking like a Dr Seuss creature exploring in the woods.

It reminds me of the Dr. Seuss character ‘Cat in the hat’ with the red and white stripes. I have loved reading his books to the boys and as much as they haven’t grown out of picture books, poetry and reading time, the boys put them in the pile to give away. It is hard passing on books but when you have limited space there are only so many books you can keep. I am trying not to discourage them  as they always put the strangest things on the discard pile and keep the little odd plastic bits! In our house this week it has felt a little bit like a Dr Seuss book. We have all got into the habit of speaking in rhyme the biggest culprit, well guess! Honestly it is a mad house. I think living with an artist it is bound to be.

Over the last two weeks I keep seeing the trailer for the movie Tully. It immediately resonated with me, as it will probably do for most mothers. But I also really felt, from the brief snippet of the film, that it portrayed my life over the last ten years. I hadn’t realised at the time but when our eldest was one years old we opened our own business and so my husband had to pour into that. So I guess I was home with the baby ( or in Egypt where I spent 2 months of my maternity leave).  This year marks our ten-year business-owning anniversary. Within that time though, we had two boys and I stopped any paid work, so my role has been one of pouring into them. Often, when we are within something we can’t see what is happening and I very easily forgot to re-fill myself. I have been learning about self-care over the last 18 months, a bit like when you are on an aeroplane, they tell you to put your own mask on first before your children. You can’t pour from an empty vessel. I have often looked at other mothers and wondered how they had so much energy and attention. My sleep deprivation definitely had an effect on all areas of my life. Even with the power of knowledge and hindsight ten years later, sleep deprive me for a night and I am not fit for much.

From what I gleaned from the trailer of the movie, a woman called Tully comes to care for the mother in the film, played by Charlize Theron, who still looks pretty good despite gaining 50 pounds for the role. I guess everyone needs a Tully to come and care for them. I think this is what we lack in the west now as we live and bring up our families in isolation. Perhaps, the African proverb , ‘it takes a village to raise a child’ has underlying wisdom. So, this past year I have sourced a kind-of care from several woman globally and I feel I am slowly coming back to the woman I was. The woman I am. Not the Sam I am (that’s the sculptor and Dr Seuss talking again).

We tiptoe around motherhood in so many ways. Although we may not be able to get a Tully in our lives ( I will have to see the film and probably should have before writing this post) but if you can then do. More importantly you can affect your own life with the story you are telling yourself. Stay positive, words are powerful and find your own inner Tully.

dr seuss

Links for woman needing any help rejuvenate themselves!

May 13-19thwoman’s health 

For un uncluttered life, become unstuck with Allie

Mother like a boss with Kendra

Get fit with Zehra at The Fit nest or Yoga with Adriene

If you are local and looking for a homeopath :

Emma Colley

or

https://wwwfindahomepath.org

The Sepia Woman – For National Poetry Day

Uncategorized
sleepless-for-poem

Sleepless nights (2016) Sam Shendi

The Sepia Woman

I’m not an octopus, I’ve said it a thousand times

yet I often have one wrapped around me, I should have read the signs

as I’m sinking, dragging, sagging to the ocean floor.

I’m not an oyster tethered to its rock

though Cancarian I embrace a shell on my back

I chance direction from this, to that

Oh to be in the ocean blue,

blue is something I seem to do

to wear, to feel, to dream

of that independent creature swimming serene,

not on the ocean bed, scuttling

shy solitary cuttlefish,

this elegant creature with remarkable eyes

masking emotions on its rides,

blending in with the world around

spraying black ink

With its dark moods, a sombre cloud

 inky fish, this ink with which I write

and have now spilt, what a mess

I’m cross with myself but have to confess,

if it had been anyone else, how angry I’d have been

Yet, look now at what I have seen

the most beautiful free-flowing design has appeared,

So scrap all the rules and conformity

Patterns all rigid, perfection for normality

I’m messy, I’m inky, I’m free to be me

Now ink of sepia, you colour of brown

I wish you could photograph and capture my frown,

furrowed lines on my head, cross-examine

the state of the dye which has spread

blood like,

tea stained,

brown, black and blue,

used with creative spontaneity through

history,

for writing, drawing, thinking in hue,

for colours is where attraction will lay,

with colours for moods, they change, react

to any words which others say.

So I create, I move, I dance with abandon

because I’m not an oyster afraid of the sand,

with a walrus near by and a carpenter to hand,

I’m not an octopus, I’ve said it a thousand times

yet I often have one wrapped around me, I should have read the signs

I am the cuttlefish, the sepia woman

writer of verse and a poet of rhymes.

T.Shendi 2016.

adult-c-for-poem

Adult Conversation (2016) Sam Shendi

 

Love and other drugs.

Beautiful Bronze, Egyptian, Mother and Child, Relationships, Soul searching

Sunday saw the start of yet another bug in our household, a really nasty one that has my eldest and I still suffering on the sofa. So, it was nice to see this piece ‘Patience’ back home though restored after the fire and looking highly polished and reflective, looking very different to before. Patience, so needed when you are poorly. Especially as it was the start to the holidays and I had lots of things planned to do with the boys.

'Patience restored'

‘Patience restored’

This week’s illness has really taught me to be much more patient and gentle with my eldest soon who is ever so often fighting off illness. It has really taught me how to be a bit more ‘motherly’ in my care towards him. I am quite a believer in the body’s ability to naturally fight infection and also that it  is our bodies way of purifying. Not in a negligent way. I give the children calpol but when the doctor insist there isn’t anything stronger needed, I don’t really push for it. Although, I am starting to get a bit concerned about how frequently we get poorly in our household. When it come to being poorly I am all for the love and homeopathic approach. Perhaps also because it’s not long since that due to lengthy nursing and two pregnancies i couldn’t take strong medication. However, I have indulged in a Lemsip and a few adol (paracetamol) and that seems enough for me.

My sister-in-law in Egypt who is a pharmacist, really noticed the different approach when she was here in December sent me a message. She sent me  a message  asking how we all were, so I gave her our weeks account of our illnesses. She wrote to me, ” oh you poor girl, take one of the antibiotics’ I brought you and a pill for flu and an adol pill and you will be fine in an hour, you amaze me you English people with your patience about sickness!!! Move off the sofa and take meds now! I had to laugh I now understood my Husband’s lack of sympathy. He had told me to take medication. If there is a simple solution to a problem then that is the obvious solution. I can understand it, when you see your child particularly suffering you want to just get them better quick. In Egypt they can’t stand illness and suffering and pharmacies are a business where most sold items are medicines not cosmetics. My sister in Law thinks it will require 50 years or more till the medical system is one like here, “Souls are not yet so valuable”.

So I did a little research and here is why we don’t dish out drugs easily here….. “Studies from around the world have shown that between 40 and over 90% of antibiotic prescriptions are unnecessary. In many parts of Africa, where antibiotics are commonly available from unsanctioned providers, it will be worth educating the general populace about the consequences of irrational antibiotic resistance.” ‘Antibiotic Resistance in Africa’ (Iruka N. Okeke* and Anibal Sosa†)

The Department of Health in the UK advocates that;

  • Antibiotics are losing their effectiveness at a rate that is both alarming and irreversible – similar to global warming.
  • Urge patients and prescribers to think about the drugs they are requesting and dispensing.
  • Bacteria are adapting and finding ways to survive the effects of antibiotics, ultimately becoming resistant so they no longer work. And the more you use an antibiotic, the more bacteria become resistant to it.”
  • Antibiotic resistance is not new, but more action is needed now to tackle this global problem if we are to keep pace with its development.” (Professor Dame Sally Davies)
'Patience'

‘Patience’

The UK is leading the way in responding to EU calls for action, with the development of a new cross-Government Antimicrobial Resistance Strategy and Action plan, which will be published by the Department of Health next year.
The strategy will champion responsible use of antibiotics, and build on ongoing work to:

  • slow down the development of antibiotic resistance
  • maintain the efficacy of existing antibiotics
  • develop new antibiotics and alternative treatments
  • investigate the link between antibiotic use in animals and the food chain, and the spread of resistance in people
  • minimise antibiotics entering the environment in other ways
'Paitence'

‘Patience’

So I do believe it has reason to exercise patience when poorly, strengthen our natural defences and immune systems but most importantly  in educating  and developing an understanding into the problems with using antibiotics. Sometimes the quick fix isn’t the best long-term solution. So despite the best laid plans for this weeks holiday and my initial frustration with having to stay put, I also learnt that some times laughter, lemsips and love are the best kind of drugs!