My name is Annie. It rhymes with Fanny. I usually tell people this upon first introducing myself because I heard once that rhyming and association helps people to remember names. Yet, this name was taken as a web address name- bummer! Nevertheless, I went with “Uncanny Annie”. It seemed to fit better. Maybe I should take you back to the beginning to see if you agree?
I grew up in a small town in the Western District of Victoria, Australia. I was always the eccentric, animal loving kid. I raised money for my mouse’s $200 tumour to be removed, walked around with a chicken in a make shift sling over my neck nursing its broken leg and even had a “rehabilitation centre” for snails that had accidentally been stood on. My parents explained me as “intense”. I went vegetarian in primary school and proved all those wrong who said it was a faze, as I am now 27, a vegan and trying to live life as ethically as I can.
Young me and my brother
I was bullied throughout my teenage years which eventuated in me having an accident which has left me with a permanent visual disability. So I happily waved school goodbye when I graduated and got into do law/science at university. After trying to adjust to being a newly, visually impaired person, I wasn’t coping and slipped into a deep depression and dropped out of uni despite being quite some way into my degree. I struggled with my inner demons for a while and then, with the words of my mother ringing in my ears (“stick it up them (bullies.) Don’t let what has happened hold you back. Prove to them they didn’t affect you”) I grudgingly re-enrolled at university again.
This time I had moved into a house in central Melbourne with my close friends that I had grown up with in my little country town. We were naive, over-friendly, eclectic and partied oh-so-very-hard but still had a lot to learn. It seemed there was never a night that we didn’t have a couch surfer in our house. I had the time of my life and I suppose you would say I “went off the rails.” Some questionable decision making, lack of money and insomnia did not help my already fragile state and I ended up finding myself looking out the window one night at the train station next to our house fantasising about the possibilities. I did not return to uni. I was lost.
That was until (cue prince charming) I met my partner, Liam, in what was then rated the worst nightclub in Australia according to credible sources (revolting mens magazines.) We became the prime example for “opposites attract.” And all of a sudden I found myself in an intensely inseparable, spew-in-your-mouth, ooey-gooey, loving relationship. Despite being the independent person I am, I do credit Liam with helping me through.
Myself and Liam
Then (to our bloody shock) we found out I was pregnant with a whoopsie-daisy pregnancy only months into our relationship. I didn’t know what to think or feel. I was scared about what plan Liam had with his life and scared I was going to screw it up.
But before I had time to even think about the prospect of having a child, my brother (whom I was extremely close to) was killed in a car accident. It’s here where I struggle to articulate the pain I endured (and still do.) Life felt shattered.
I forgot I was pregnant and didn’t show signs of morning sickness because I curled myself up in bed, tired from wailing about my brother. Liam was next to me the whole way comforting me and making me sip soup. It was a blur but before I knew it I was 12 weeks and having to tell people that we were expecting a baby. Surely you think that there would be no bigger trigger for my depression than the death of my brother? Well, yes and I believe that if not for my pregnancy I would hate to know where I would be. However, my unborn baby gave me reason to look after myself. I got out of bed. I showered. I ate. All very big steps. And eventually became excited about becoming a mother. The grief from my brother has never left but my mental health has never been better. I still have my moments, sometimes weeks, but generally I’m in a pretty great place.
My last photo taken with my brother
In March 2011 we welcomed our baby boy, Malachy. I had my challenges, like every mum does, but I also had a lot of perspective after my brother’s passing. Every sleepless night and every snotty nose I wiped didn’t get me down because I felt alive. Malachy was the best (such a mum comment.) And I thought, how could life be any better? Hold on. Lets make another one like him! So we tried for another baby.
Turns out I am “Fertile Myrtle” and got pregnant very quickly and easily… with twins. Because, heck, we wouldn’t want to make it easy on ourselves would we?
One week before Malachy turned 2, I gave birth 13 weeks prematurely to my twin girls, Delphine and Cheska. It was a long haul with the twins in hospital for months and months but we now have 2 healthy little girls. They are the chalk to each other’s cheese; Delphi being sweet, introverted and sensitive while Cheska is carefree, confident, independent and… a ratbag. Malachy is extremely energetic and an extremely deep thinker. You could say it makes for an unpredictable and almost sitcom worthy life.
In 2015, I began my blog as an outlet after being the primary carer for our children for so long and also to develop and find what I want to do with my career again. What’s more, I wanted to have challenging, intelligent and thought provoking conversations with people. I wanted to learn more from others and I have tried hard to create a place where other’s voices are also heard particularly on my Facebook and Instagram pages. I’m very humbled by the response.
On NYE 2015 Liam and I were married with our children by our sides. Pure bliss.
And yeah, that’s pretty much where life is at. Thank goodness I’m coupled because if this was a dating website I would definitely have baggage! Haha.