Posts tagged ‘life’

THEY TRIED TO MAKE ME GO TO REHAB. 

It’s a beautiful day. The sun is shining but there is a cool breeze. I feel good. I am waiting in the shade until it is time for the birthday party of a very special boy. My photo of the dappled light at my feet will never do it justice. It is a glorious morning. 


There is a book I heard about somewhere. I haven’t read it but the concept was that the woman who wrote it spent a year saying ‘Yes!’ to things. I think it’s actually called that – ‘The Year of Yes’ or something. The idea is to make the most of opportunities that come your way. Anyway, it occurred to me that perhaps this year is my year of saying ‘No’. Or at least working at getting better at it. 


My psych challenged me a little while ago with the observation that most often my response to anything at all is ‘Sure’. I think his idea was to make me more thoughtful about the decisions I make. Because clearly I don’t think enough already! Ha! 

I’m a ‘why not?’ girl at heart but I do think there is something to the theory that says if you can’t give an enthusiastic and wholehearted ‘yes’ to something then it is a ‘no’. 

You cannot be everywhere at once and do everything at once. You cannot be all things to all people. You can’t always get what you want. There’s only so much of you to go around and you only have so many days left. It is necessary to make choices about where to direct your energy. In order to have the room to say ‘yes’ to some things in your life you’ll need to say ‘no’ to others. 

Every time we say yes or no to ANYTHING we have the power to change our lives. That really is some magic shit! 


Sometimes you just need the things that feed your soul. Make room for them. A laughing toddler. A much needed haircut. Tattoos and tan lines. Whether you are saying yes or saying no, let your days say something. 

Safe onward travel x 

FIGHT SONG.

Images from the Rally for Marriage Equality, Perth, Western Australia, Australia – 25th June 2016. 

WE COULD BE IMMORTALS, JUST NOT FOR LONG.

My day so far has had a certain syncronicity. If I was the kind of person that believed in signs – and I am – then I might be looking for meaning. But then I am also a person who very much believes that if we seek we shall find, so pay attention to what you are looking for.

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I posted the above picture last night on facebook and woke this morning to find two very impassioned comments from a friend in disagreement. This is one of the beautiful things about friendship,the capacity to disagree while maintaining the integrity of the relationship. For me the picture spoke of perception and perspective and of choice and free will, which to me equates to freedom. As I replied to my friend not every devil we dance with or demon we battle is external or even literal. I like that the woman is blindfolded but she knows anyway. Who’s zoomin’ who?

Another friend who posted the poop emoji last night, this morning explained that her account was hacked by her daughter who thought she was being funny. Actually I found it a profound statement and commentary on our times; you can post any old shit on facebook and people will respond to it.

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Also on my newsfeed this morning was a screenshot a friend had taken of an exchange she had on Pinterest with someone who objected to her use of profanity. To me the answer is simple; if it offends, stop looking. But there the complainant was, looking at this account, not liking it and suggesting someone else’s creative endeavour should be moulded to suit their own specific requirements. The response was infinitely classy and observed that they clearly were not meant for each other. Quite.

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As I said in this post once you put your energy out there into the Universe, or the Interwebs which is kind of the same thing, it takes on a life of it’s own. You cannot control how people will receive what you give them. It’s the ‘lead a horse to water’ thing. And by this stage in my life – THANK GOODNESS – I’ve worked out that that is perfectly ok. That all I can do is the best I can do and that the only person I can control is me. Not that I was ever big into controlling others, but being responsible for them? Well, that’s a whole other story! But I’m not. I am responsible for me. I take responsibility for me. And I always give my best. So, if that is ever not good enough for anyone else, well, that’s on them. I’ll keep doing my own thing – living, laughing, loving – and giving thanks for those of you that enjoy the ride with me. You guys are the best!

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Safe onward travel x

BRIGHT EYES.

I love this blog. For over six years now I have come here to write out my heart and soul and pour myself into the Universe. I’m not always regular with my posts and there are varying reasons for that. Although I primarily write here for myself the fact that others read my words and are kind enough to say they find something of value here is a bonus really. I’d write anyway. It is how I process things and words are pleasurable to me. It’s not been an especially long gap since I last wrote but it’s worth mentioning  because there was half a thought in the back of my head that I’d not write again until I had something fun and happy and upbeat to write about because things have been a bit bleak. I don’t want all my posts to be sad.

The truth is though that I am sad. I’m very sad a lot of the time and I also feel stuck and powerless. Not a great combination, really. I’m not enjoying it much and I’m in the frame of mind where I feel like a liability to those around me, like I am inflicting myself on others, so am loath to do it. But I realised something yesterday, that I was discounting two things I know to be true. The first thing is one I know about myself and that is that I make the best I can of what I have. Secondly, that once you put forth your energy into the Universe it has a life of it’s own. People will make of it what they will and although you can try to guide it’s path the truth is that you cannot control how it will be received by the big wide world. A bit like giving birth to a child really.

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Two very significant things have happened in the time since we last connected and they are what bring me to you today. They were very different events but they resonated with the same message for me. My connections with others, the love of varying flavours, that is what it is all about for me. My facebook friends list is an interesting blend of my before and after lives; Daughter Number One’s friends, all grown up now, friends from my own school days, parents of my children’s friends. Friends from my life on the other side of the country. My former psychologist, colleagues from my previous life, other mothers of murdered children, the police officer who worked my daughter’s case. Old friends, new friends, dear friends, true friends. All these people who were strangers once.

During the worst time of my life I met the detective who was investigating my Daughter’s death. The day after she died and several times after that he was the one who interviewed me, at my home and at his station. He attended my Daughter’s funeral. He took me to the crash site and the police car lot to see what there was left to see and answered my questions.He was at the inquest, not just in his official capacity but he was really there for me during that whole process, walking me through. His wife was pregnant with their first child when my Daughter died and their daughter was born the same year. I so appreciated the work, the really above and beyond efforts, of this man that I nominated him for ‘Police Officer of the year’ and do you know? He actually won! And he generously shared with me the pleasure he had in telling his family of his award and how he looked forward to telling his own daughter about it in the future. He protested that he only did his job, only did what many, many others would do, did do, every day. In the dense blackness following my Daughter’s death this guy was a beacon. We emailed. He and his wife had a son. I had a second Daughter. Life moved on.

Nearly two years ago I found him on Facebook. He isn’t in the police force any more and I felt so glad to find that out. As good as he was at his job I can only imagine the toll that work takes on you, day after day, when you do it properly. So, I was glad for him, and for his family. I’ve seen the family photo’s his wife tags him in – beautiful, accomplished children, extended family celebrations, holidays – and all of them, without fail, bring me joy. Because even if the only work he ever did was with me and on behalf of my Daughter, all the respect and compassion and humanity he showed, then he deserves all the happiness in the world, every single day for the rest of eternity. Of course that wasn’t all he ever did and life doesn’t work like that.

So it happened that almost two weeks ago now I read a post this former police officer wrote in tribute after the death of his ten year old nephew, to his nephew and his family and about the decision to donate his organs, made during DonateLife Week. Despite the fact I avoid mainstream news I happened upon more information in the days that followed; this posting was on a website I follow and it summed up my own feelings and intense grief. I now know so much more about this family and yet, really, know nothing. But I will never forget this boy’s smile or his name. Sweet dreams Banjo, live on in happiness.

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At the opposite end of the spectrum came the other event that rocked my world and went partway to re-establishing my equilibrium (Oh, let’s not get too excited! There’s still a way to go!). Last Friday made five years since a chance encounter and a simple question combined to change the course of my life and brought me into contact with someone whose significance and value to me only increases with the passage of time. So much has passed between us and so far we have travelled together, not all of it easy, not all of it fun but he is someone who can always reach me no matter how detached I become from everything else. In that way he keeps me tethered to the present. He was the safe place I ran to when Daughter Number One’s father killed himself and even during hard times between us I have never lost sight of the fact he is a gift to me.

And this is it you see, a word we write, a question we ask, everything we do in our lives has the potential to impact on others. Lives changed. Events of various significance but all attesting to the fact it is a short life and a small world and no man is an island. We are all connected to each other. It is not just the one police officer I remember. It is also the guy at my local station who kept answer my calls on the very long night my Daughter didn’t come home. The same officer I spoke to much later who told me how it felt to speak to me the during the final call, when he knew that she was almost definitely dead, but when I didn’t know. Not then. Not yet. I also remember the newly minted officer who wrote about the intense smell of the crash site but who kept doing his job anyway. Whether it is quite literally by donating organs or by the love, kindness, respect and compassion we share we leave pieces of ourselves with the people whose lives we touch. Those are the things that burn brightly, long after we are gone. I try to go gently, with myself, with others. It is my very real experience that, truly, everyone is fighting a battle you can know nothing about.

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NO MAN IS AN ISLAND.

No man is an island,
Entire of itself,
Every man is a piece of the continent,
A part of the main.
If a clod be washed away by the sea,
Europe is the less.
As well as if a promontory were.
As well as if a manor of thy friend’s
Or of thine own were:
Any man’s death diminishes me,
Because I am involved in mankind,
And therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls;
It tolls for thee.

John Donne

Make the best you can of what you have. Travel safe my friends x 

NO MATTER WHERE I ROAM. 

  
This time next week I will be thousands of kilometres from where I am now. I am travelling to attend a wedding. As I’ve said, I adore weddings! They are full of optimism, hope, faith and love. Because this is the wedding of two people I care deeply for it is even more special to me. 

While I am away for the weekend I’ll be meeting up in person with friends I have only spoken to online – one of my very favourite things to do! Making the virtual real! I am also going to spend time with other people – and animals – that I have loved for a long time now. And two plane trips each way! I love to fly! So I have lots to look forward to.  

   
Having lots to look forward to is handy because things have been quite hard for a little while now and the next week has more Baby Daddy induced trauma, none of which I am looking forward to at all. 

If home is where the heart is then it is both a blessing and a curse that bits of my heart lie everywhere, near and far, thanks to my gypsy soul. Bits of me that remain and live on in places I have been and people I love.  Even getting on a plane feels like home because in a strange and somewhat corny way when I am flying up there above the clouds I feel closer to my Daughter Number One. 

At the end of the day we all want a place we can lay our heads. Somewhere safe, secure and warm we can relax and be ourselves. Whether that is a person or a place or just a feeling of inner peace, it is something I am still working on. 

I guess I’ll know it when I find it. 

Safe onward travel x 

  

WE’LL WALK THIS ROAD TOGETHER, THROUGH THE STORM.

It is the early hours of the morning and today is the day after yesterday. The area where I live now is poised, ready for a storm coming off the back of a cyclone. All the Catholic schools in the region are closed today and my Partner in Crime friend suggested maybe the Catholics know something the rest of us don’t as all other schools remain open. Hell, maybe they do! They had Noah!

Me, I love a storm. We’ve spoken before, you and I, of my affinity for the wild things; the vast, raw ocean, turbulence on a plane. Storms are magic to me and the whole place was abuzz with expectation yesterday. It’s as if most people went to sleep holding their breath in anticipation.

Yesterday I went to a lookout with my Partner in Crime to see the ocean. It was tantalisingly and magnificently tempestuous. It reminded me of the final scene in the movie Point Break, although it had not yet reached it’s full potential. A camera man and a reporter pulled up near us and set up to film. I wanted to go down and sit on the beach; to be buffeted by the wind as sand whipped against my face. But, you know, real life! So I took my photo’s and eventually we got back in the car. As we drove towards my friend’s home Eminem’s “I’m Not Afraid” started playing and we turned it up so loud I could feel the bass thumping in my chest.

Son Number Two and I had dinner with my Partner in Crime and his Better Half and their sons. There was good food and great company and exceptional bourbon. Many laughs were had. After dinner my Young Friend and his Lovely Fiancée arrived. They are travelling in this part of the world at the moment, for which I am most grateful because I get to hug them a little while longer. There were many more laughs and I admired their newly acquired body art before bidding everyone goodnight and taking my leave,

Shortly after the goodnight texts and shortly before midnight came the crushing but not unexpected news that the Lovely Fiancée’s beloved Uncle had died. Not unexpected because an accident a little while ago had left him fighting a losing battle. My beautiful friend, the Lovely Fiancée, sent me a heartbroken text and I threw a jacket over my pyjamas and walked back to my Partner in Crime’s house where the Lovely Fiancée was sitting in the dark out the front. So I sat with her.

Life is short guys and it turns on a dime. One brief instant and everything changes. The Lovely Fiancée’s beloved Uncle actually introduced her mother to her father. Without him, and that moment, she would not exist. He literally knew her and loved her for her entire life. Long before that he was, and remained, her father’s best friend.

There is nothing I can do for the Lovely Fiancée but be her friend and travel with her, so that’s what I will do. It is what she has done for me. I will throw a jacket over my pyjamas and walk in the middle of the night to get to her, without hesitation, so she knows I’ve got her back. That is what life is about. It is about standing on a lookout staring at the oncoming storm together. It is about music and laughter and friends. It is about love and it is for living.

And it is so, so short! So live, laugh, love NOW!

Safe onward travel Tom x

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THUNDERBOLT AND LIGHTNING.

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Yep, me again. I have more time on my hands and no less things on my mind at present so you’ll have to bear with me for a little bit folks!

Last night there was a fantastic storm with crashing thunder and lightning that made the dark into daylight. It was fabulous! Although I felt for the dogs – one in particular – and the goats – one in particular – who may be bothered by the storm I have always loved storms and after the incessant, oppressive heat it was glorious just to stand out in the open air and watch the show.

It is the wildness, the unpredictability, the raw energy that I love for all the same reasons I love the ocean and turbulence on a plane. I was speaking to a friend and he said he had been in a number of storms whilst sailing and loved it, surviving being a fantastic feeling once you get to harbour. His statement was interesting to me because although I agree with him for me the exhilaration is absolutely in the storm, not on reaching the harbour. I really do like the reminder that there are so many things bigger than I am but also the recognition that I am a part of the whole and just as fierce and free as any other untamed force.

I find myself standing on a precipice again today and that same mix of apprehension and excitement. In a little over a week the next phase of my life will really be able to begin and I am so looking forward to it. I don’t do limbo well and waiting for things to happen drives me spare. One at least likes to have the illusion of thinking one is in the drivers seat! I do try to live in the present moment and some days I am better at that than others but for me the stark reality is always that life is short. Make the most of what you have while you have it because tomorrow is never promised. So, I don’t have any problem jumping. Once I commit to something I am all in.

My sailing friend very kindly also said that if he was all at sea, figuratively speaking, and I was standing on the deck ready to face the storm with him he would find it heartening, which was gratifying to hear. I like reciprocal arrangements! Once again I am lucky to have my crew, two of whom get a special mention in this post for their unflinching support, without which my steps of late would have been much more faltering.

It is rather awe inspiring and extremely humbling to watch beautiful people support me so comprehensively. Completely without hesitation and calling me silly in the face of my own. I am blessed indeed.

When I awoke this morning the sky was grey and there was drizzling rain. Now it’s blue skies and sunshine as far as the eye can see. Which is the way it goes. Sunset, sun rise. Rain and then sunshine. There are positives in all of them if that is what you are seeking to find.

Safe onward travel x

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