The One About Underpants

I really want to preface this post by saying – yes, I will be talking about my underpants.

However, I think what’s important to clarify is this :  If you’re here because you did a hashtag search on underpants for reasons other than “I’m really that obsessed with one brand of underpants and I’ve been buying them for nearly 25 years and I’m gutted I can’t buy them here.”, this is your time to bow out of the post gracefully.   Thanks for the click! 😉 Continue reading The One About Underpants

The one about pockets.

I bought a dress the other day.  Hardly mind blowing, revolutionary stuff really, but bear with me.  I’ve started working again, and occasionally I want to do stuff like frocking up and looking like a human, rather than something that crawled out of suburbia, got dragged through a couple of hedges on the way and lost an argument with a couple of sassy 4 year olds that morning.  But enough about everyday life.

I bought a dress.  I’m very proud of this fact.  It was one of the first I’ve bought post babies, and I got excited about getting something new.  It’s something I own that I didn’t buy on a clearance rack because hey, it’s just going to be puked/boogered/stained on anyway.  I actually owned something NEW!  Without STAINS!  And I looked like a functioning member of society in it! Continue reading The one about pockets.

The one about D-Day…

Today is the 25th of October.  Just another autumn day for most people.

4 years ago, at around 10am, this day took on another meaning for me.

I went to my regular checkup, and found that baby A had barely any fluid, whilst baby B was swimming in her fluid.  We had suspected, then confirmed later, TTTS.  This day was horrible – I had so many ultrasounds, talked to many doctors, including one that told us we should make funeral plans for our babies.  The next few days were spent in shock and tears, as we came to grips with what was happening.

Today is our D-Day.  Today it’s 4 years since we got the diagnosis that changed our lives, and makes us count our blessings.

I look back at everything we went through with uncertainty, and the ongoing fear of the worst, and I can’t believe that we came through with our sanity and sense of humour intact.

The constant travel to and from Leiden, the endless appointments, the sometimes brutal honesty of the situation really did take its toll on us.  Then the weeks in the NICU, followed by months of therapies, as well as getting used to having 2 babies in the house… I seriously don’t know how we did it.

I know I make light of the situation at times, but please don’t ever think I don’t take what happened to us seriously.  I wake up each day and am so grateful that I am in this country, that I had access to the best doctors and the researchers. I’m acutely aware of how lucky we are. Every day I see new cases and I see stories that are so similar to mine, and yet so many different and sometimes sad outcomes.

4 years has taught me patience.  It’s taught me that my writing is important.  It’s taught me that it’s important to share my story.

I’ve met some awesome people and met some amazing friends on this journey.  I hope I’ll meet some more.  I love using my voice and my writing to help people understand my journey.

So here’s to another 4 years of memories, and facing each October 25th and staring it in the eye 😉

This is what 4 years of memories looks like (well, this is half of a box. I have another box as well).

The one about the oliebollen …

I have to say, I love this time of year in the Netherlands.  Yes, it’s a bit miserable, rainy and starting to get cold.  But there’s one thing I love every year – the oliebollen!

Oliebollen are traditional eaten at New Year, but from the first of October stalls pop up everywhere selling the delicious, hot Dutch-style donuts.  The smell is amazing! Continue reading The one about the oliebollen …

The one about the Wikkelkinderen…

I hinted a while back that I was working on a story that was a slight deviation from my usual style of writing – and it was published today on Amsterdam Mamas – a website dedicated to parenting in the Netherlands.

The story was my story, intertwined with a fascinating story behind a painting in a castle, not too far from my house.  However, the painting is significant to me. Continue reading The one about the Wikkelkinderen…

The one about the perfect gift …

Warning – this post contains images of placentas. If your stomach isn’t so great, time to move along … 😉

Oddly enough, this post isn’t about my poor, long suffering husband ;).

Over the years, I’ve developed a unique relationship with our research doctor, all based on the tale I told about the girls placenta. (It’s worth the click. Really).  I share updates on the girls progress and catch up on the occasion we’re visiting the LUMC. Continue reading The one about the perfect gift …

The one about the breakup…

Dear Albert Heijn,

We need to talk.  I feel we’ve come to a point in our relationship of over 3 years where we can be honest with each other.  You’ve been there through modified bedrest,  premature deliveries and anxious parents of twins who are afraid to leave the house . You’ve come in snow, rain and heat with my crazy orders of 10,000 diapers and a bottle of milk. Most of the time you get my order right, and I get everything on my list – and I’ve forgiven you for the times that you’ve  been out of stock on toilet paper and cucumbers, forcing me to leave the comfort and safety of my house for the real world.

Things have been good between us, haven’t they?  You’ve had a loyal customer who loves your home deliveries and looks forward to the monthly delivery of all the stuff I can’t be bothered lifting or carrying home.  I’ve had some good service and who can complain when you send around that good looking delivery driver who drops the load right in your kitchen and smiles at you as he asks you to put in your PIN …

I have to admit though, my attentions have been straying.  Things are getting expensive, and I’ve been forced to look around at other options.

And then, today, I cheated on you.

I discovered someone else delivers to  my door.  They offered me free delivery on items that I actually purchase.   They had good deals.  It was all so tempting.  Cautiously,  I compared side by side on some of my regular products – and they were cheaper!  I found myself clicking and building a shopping list and then … I ordered from someone else.  But it doesn’t end there.  I realised that I had already ordered from you  the same day! What was I going to do if you met on my doorstep?  I carefully scheduled a delivery time later in  the day, and prayed that you wouldn’t meet.

You were late this  morning. Nervously I paced the kitchen, hoping that you wouldn’t meet the new supermarket in my life.  When you finally arrived, I paid quickly, ushered you out and then raced around, putting things away so there was no evidence for when the next driver arrived.

And then, the new blood came. On time.  And he was so friendly, so nice, and  so efficient, I began to fall into a trance.  Everything was in my order.

Things used to be  good  between us.  But now, you have competition.   The cliche is “It’s not you, it’s me…”.  I’m beginning to think maybe it is you …

As for next month, well, it depends on  how things go.  I’ll still pop down to you  to get the occasional  thing, but for deliveries, I’ve tasted a new world. And I liked it …

Sincerely,

Stephanie

The one about the trip to the doctors … (again)

Given my previous experiences in blogging about doctors in this country, I really should have learned my lesson by now and stopped when I had the thought ‘Hey, this could be a super funny post!’  Continue reading The one about the trip to the doctors … (again)