The Stories Within Us

My daughter turns 14 next week. As is always the case at this time of year, I’m reflecting on the difference she has made to my life, what joy she has brought, and what lessons she has taught me. And as I prepare for the publication of my first novel next year, my thoughts inevitably […]

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Welcome, beautiful boy

A year ago today I was standing in front of the Mona Lisa in the Louvre museum in Paris with my daughter, speaking to my ex-partner (my daughter’s father) via FB Messenger, reassuring him and telling him to take deep breaths, to trust the doctors, and to have faith. He was about to witness the […]

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Loving and losing our children

New Zealand’s appalling youth suicide rate is in the news again, as is our impotency in the face of it. A new UNICEF report has found New Zealand’s youth suicide rate – teenagers between 15 and 19 – to be the highest of a long list of 41 OECD and EU countries. The usual culprits […]

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A trio of poems

In honour of World Poetry Day (which was actually yesterday), I thought I would re-publish three of my own poems – poems that are dear to me in very different ways. The first I wrote for my daughter, the most precious thing in my life. It tries to capture those moments in the wee small hours […]

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A Different Child

As some of you know, I have one child – not by choice. I wrote about my struggles to have a second child and my experience of recurrent miscarriage and secondary infertility in this article, which was published in a New Zealand magazine last year. I wanted to share my journey for selfish reasons – cathartic […]

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Selling Beauty to Babies

My six-year-old daughter was invited to a party this weekend. The little birthday girl is a delight and I would have loved Miss B. to attend. After checking out the venue online, however, my partner and I decided we had to decline the invitation. Club Girly Girlz hosts parties for young girls centred around getting made […]

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Brightness

It is Miss B’s birthday today. I wrote her a poem not long ago (see “My daughter’s bedside, 3am.” Today, however, I bow to the superior talent of New Zealand poet Denis Glover (Dec 1912 – Aug 1980). For you, my darling daughter. Happy Birthday. Brightness I am bright with the wonder of you And the […]

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My daughter’s bedside, 3am

Mothers Day (tomorrow in New Zealand) is always special to me. I am so proud to be a mother, and so very grateful.  I wrote this poem today. My daughter’s bedside, 3am You are far away, somewhere mothers cannot follow. But I am near; so near your breath is my blanket. It won’t be long until the […]

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The Hurty Bottom and other stories

The most gorgeous 5-yr-old in the universe (aka my daughter, Miss B.) was awarded a certificate at her school assembly this morning. The certificate read: “For writing some awesome stories so far this year. You are trying so hard with your writing!” Miss B. is turning into quite a storyteller. Every morning after mat time the […]

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The Duck Huggle

OMG, my daughter (Miss B.) has beaten me to it. She’s written a book. And it’s good. Gripping, even. She disappeared to her writing corner the other day with paper, a pen and a determined look. More than an hour later she emerged, ink stains on her fingers and that slightly wild look on her face that […]

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