There’s Always Christmas.

by Lori Dwyer on September 20, 2011 · 17 comments

I still have no freaking Internet.

In a case of “this is totally not even funny anymore”, I’ve just discovered that neither ADSL broadband, nor cable, are available in the TinyTrainTown.

Fuck. To the power of one million. Fuck, fuck, fuck. How ridiculous. I’ve found the perfect place to live… except for the fact that it cuts me off from the one thing I love to do, from my community, from the virtual place that saving my real-life arse, over and over again.

I’m trying not to be so pessimistic. Telstra (*ahem* *cough* fuck you, Telstra) have signed me up to their mobile broadband. My modem gets here in 5-7 working days. Again. I’m hoping the service is reasonable. I can live with reasonable. Some Internet is better than no Internet at all.

And I guess I’ll keep doing what I’m doing now. Not Tweeting, or Instagram-ing. Doing a forty minute round trip every two days to sit in my car, laptop on and iPhone plugged into it, and get a little bit of a fix.

It’s enough to make me want to sob. Why does this have to be so freaking difficult?

Written sometime last week.
Tomorrow is my daughter’s birthday. I’m trying not to let it hit too hard- she is, after all, only two. And this is only the first birthday of many she will spend without her father.
It’s easier, and harder, with her being such a baby when this happened, such a tiny 15-month-old. I’m spared the grief her brother carries with her sunny smiles, her lack of questions.
I know it will be harder for her, as she gets older…. Grieving a man she never knew.
I’m glad we’re here, in our new house, for her birthday. It feels just right.
And I’m so proud of my sunny, smart, funny, boisterous little girl, who loves dollies and babies and flowers and birds and food.
I’m not going to try and explain the patchwork of disbelief, and sadness, loneliness, confusion and terror that comes hand in hand with each of these ‘firsts’ without my husband.
In the top of my linen cupboard is a box that contains all the bits for a pink doll’s wardrobe. I bought it just a week or so before Tony died, in the post-Christmas toy’s sales. It was for the Bump’s second birthday.
If Tony were still alive, that’s what we’d be doing tonight- standing, talking, in the garage of our Purple House, wearing shorts and thongs for the first time in six months after the first real day of spring, while he drilled bits of a tiny wardrobe together.
It doesn’t sound like much at all. But if I close my eyes, I am almost there. And it hurts like I can’t even fathom.
I pulled down that white box earlier tonight. Pulled the bits out, glanced at the instructions.
And decided that all of it, the entire project and what it represented, was just too damn difficult.
Hell, there’s always Christmas.

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{ 17 comments… read them below or add one }

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Mrs K January 5, 2013 at 2:05 pm

Did you ever put the wardrobe together for her?


Shellye September 26, 2011 at 8:29 am

Sorry about your internet troubles. Our first apartment ten years ago was in a dead zone and we didn't get mobile service, so we had to get a land line, which was frustrating. My internet has not been working recently, so I know how frustrating it is to have some form of communication cut off and you have to go elsewhere to do what you need to do.

Even though it doesn't sound like much, what you described about the garage and the wardrobe assembly, it is so much more, the little things, standing in the garage together or just talking, even though you may not remember the words you said. It's the little things that make up the big picture.

A friend of mine made up a list of the thing she missed after the death of her husband. Everything on the list was what most of us consider mundane, little everyday details, like fighting and making up, walking hand in hand, him calling her fifteen times a day just to say "hi" or watching him reading the paper on Saturday mornings in his chair.

If anything were to happen to my husband, I would miss how he can't go into another aisle of the store without telling me he loves me…I don't find it so annoying anymore.


Donna September 22, 2011 at 5:41 pm

Sometimes I read this and feel your raw pain leap out at me – it takes my breath away. The image of the present laying in the box, lovingly planned so far ahead, when you could never known what was to come… I hurt for you. And I'd not blame you if you threw the whole thing in the bin!


Zoey @ Good Goog September 22, 2011 at 4:10 pm

Now I feel like a bit of an ass for constantly complaining that there's no ADSL2 on the central coast. I hope the mobile broadband works! I am not the best version of myself when separated from the internet for too long.

Make someone else put that thing together. Some things are just too hard.


WilAma4 September 22, 2011 at 7:11 am

Happy birthday to your sweet girl and to you too Lori. The day we give birth is our day too… big change in our lives and special.


iamevilcupcake September 22, 2011 at 12:25 pm

You are so right regarding the firsts. I found they are the worst part after someone dies.

For me the hardest wasn't the wedding anniversary without him. Or the first birthday. It was the first time I had to shop like a single person. Where I had to buy only one of everything. I broke down and sobbed in Coles.

I promise you Lori, as each year passes, it does get easier. You will still get sad on those days, like birthdays, but it will get easier.

I just wish I could give you a big squishy hug . . .


Melissa September 21, 2011 at 8:45 pm

Happy Birthday to your lovely little girl. I hope you guys had a good day, and that her lightness was able to lift some of the sadness for you. It's hard for me to fathom how you make it through these days – but your strength is truly amazing. Keep on, keeping on, sister.


Surely Sarah September 21, 2011 at 4:27 pm

If you get Telstra 3G mobile coverage in your house, your Telstra wireless modem should work – they run on the same mobile network. Good luck! I can't imagine life without my broadband now.


Eccles September 21, 2011 at 8:19 pm

Happy Birthday to Bump. I hope you , Chop, Scarlette & the Beautiful Birthday Girl Bump have the most wonderful birthday party. Happy Birthday to Bump, Happy Birthday to her!! (X)


River September 21, 2011 at 9:51 am

Mobile broadband isn't too bad, I have a dodo usb stick which is pretty reliable.
But still, this is the 21st century, you'd think Australia would catch up with the rest of the world by now and have fast, reliable internet service everywhere!


Kelloggsville September 21, 2011 at 6:23 am

I remember once struggling to put together a toy kitchen that came in 70squillion pieces and my hands weren't strong enough to do it. I sat and sobbed about how the life of a single mum sucked. You'll get there. But if you're planning to do it by Christmas start just after halloween!! Hugs.


Anonymous September 21, 2011 at 4:10 am

Happy birthday Bump, I'm sure it was a special day xx

Oh Lori. The bittersweet of firsts. You're doing such a wonderful job sweetie, I just wish it wouldn't hurt so much.

Mobile broadband isn't too bad the only bug bare is at times it'll drop out but overall is bareable. I hope your little house gets into the adsl zone shortly.

Chris Johnston


Miss Pink September 20, 2011 at 7:44 pm

Lots of love to you and Bump. It is harder than I could possibly imagine, i'm sure.


Dorothy September 20, 2011 at 7:36 pm

You can only do what you can do. I cried over every first. And then I learnt how to transform Transformers and put up the Christmas tree.

I know it's different for you. Hugs…


MrsTully September 20, 2011 at 6:28 pm

Happy belated birthday to the Bump, I hope her day and yours was just lovely.

And Telstra mobile broadband isn't THAT bad, it's not ADSL but it ain't dial-up either. Here's hoping it's there before the weekend, when my parents signed up it was delivered the following day!


Crystal September 20, 2011 at 10:29 pm

I can't even imagine what all those "firsts" must feel like… Also, my deepest sympathies on the no-Internet thing! That must be awful! HUGs to you and a special birthday HUG for your Bump!


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