Can you tell I didn't think this through?
I decided at the beginning not to "read ahead" and discover the next steps because I suspected it might make me cop out and not do the series at all.
And as you can see by the gap in posting, I have procrastinated about approaching this one. In the end I went back to google and instead of jumping on the Wikipedia tram, I scrolled down a bit and found the irish website.You see, because this is still allegedly a catholic country, they take their religion for granted. So the Godspeak is decidedly low key. Which suits this Anglican Agnostic nicely.
Actually that reminds me of a good joke:
"Did you hear the one about the Dyslexic Agnostic Insomniac?
Stayed up all night wondering about the existence of DOG."
Boom Boom! I actually rang up and told that joke on the radio once. And fuh'ed it up saying"Oh Shite I fecked it up" live on air.
Which was actually way funnier than the joke. People were crashing their cars laughing, apparently. (Don't worry it was only Triple J)
Ahem: Back to Step 2.I have thought about this one and I am sorry but I am not going to link it to Religious faith.
Faith, like a small waist or neat ankles, is something you either have or you don't. You can't force it. So while I am not shutting the door on a death bed conversion, I am not comfortable with the accepted dogma of the church and I hope God will forgive me for that.
What I do recognise is the basic principle of the golden rule "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you" Meaning put it out there and there is a better chance that some of it will come back to you. The power, therefore, that is greater than ourselves, is that of our COMBINED efforts to manage and support our child's disability. You gotta have friends. You gotta network. You cannot do this alone or you will FECK IT UP. (as a great philosopher once said)
At the beginning you will be feeling hopeless and may be tempted or even told to "offer it up".
A charming irish expression commonly bestowed on women meaning to take all the injustice and cruelty of your daily existence and offer it up to Jesus or God.
What God is expected to do with it is anyone's guess.
Women being the vessel of sin are supposed to just suck it up I guess.
And yes for 800 years they mostly did.
(pre-invasion the Irish women warriors ran around doing what they liked)
Bad marriages, abusive husbands, a cruel and dictatorial church, exploitative labour laws, absence of contraception and the right to "Say No".
They were expected to put up with it. Many did, and it was to the detriment of their kids I can tell you.
So, as previously discussed, nobody is going to fly in on a cloud or indeed ride in on a white stallion to the rescue with all the services and intervention your child needs. Indeed, the system actually supports denial and if you choose that option, no one is going to bother you until your child reaches primary school age and can neither talk or use a toilet independently.
Then they might notice.
So you are going to have to go out and seek the greater good that is already out there in your world, most likely created by parents like yourself, who went before you.
The best diagnostic, therapuetic and educational services in this country are parent driven. There is also an informal network of support groups lead by parents and finally, a formal counselling service at the National diagnostic Centre; Solas.
Parents who have gone before you, who have fallen into the traps of waiting for non existent services, of pursuing the false gods of expensive treatments.
Parents who know how awful it is to hear the news and walk out of the clinic with that piece of paper that confirms your baby isn't perfect.
Parents who will never tell you to "offer it up" or indeed give you the the irish version of grief counselling: "God Help Ye" and "Sure, you'll be grand, you have your OTHER kids"
Please reach out, relinquish absolute control and accept the help that can restore you to sanity.
And when you do get yourself together. (I reckon it takes 2 years) you can sit down and work out what you can do to help the next ones who come along.
Do unto others, put it out there. By the laws of mathematics, the more good we put out there the more likely we are to come across it ourselves.
Now for my shoe of the Week.You remember my reference to ankles? Well I got some lovelies in the the Trinity Hospice store on Queensway London W2. These shops are all over London and they are fantastic as unlike the some of the choosier thrift stores; they take in Anything.
From the designer dee-lights stored safely behind the counter; to the bric a brac of unopened perfumes, vintage sunglass cases, designer shoe and handbag-bags, airline and hotel toiletries, and best of all: kids videos.
Some snootier thrift stores have decided not to take videos anymore because they are "obsolete". But surely thrift is the last refuge of the obsolete and heaven for the collector.
IN one morning I got:
A gorgeous black Burberry skirt with a very minimalist burbery check on the tie belt. (completely non chav),
a little purple Maxmara cropped jacket, Ralph Lauren Polo Denim Jacket (to share with Boo),
Mango arse flattering trousers, (gotta love spanish labels)
a little Radley wallet bag to keep my sunglasses in.
And sitting handsomely on the shoe shelf (as opposed to the shoe bucket which is universally full of crappy pleather and nylon nasties, and Crocs) were some suede Kurt Geiger Mary Janes.
Now I am under no illusions about my ankles, and freely accept that like True Faith, I don't really have any. As evidenced by this Hen Night Heifer picture.
However, I am able to compensate for this cankleness and by adjusting the straps and adding some opaque tights, I can create the illusion of daintiness.
I still have my sturdy little carry me 10 kilometres without a worry ankles; while looking like I could be on my way to a highly paid job in the city,
- as opposed to drinking cocktails through a penis shaped straw in Temple Bar.
Phew, step II out of the way.
Now I have to run. Will try and improve on the photographs later.
Thanks for sticking with me.