Saturday, May 16, 2015

Zen

There are some women, I see them every day, who have an almost Zen-like existence.

Source: Zen Mumma

One heavily pregnant lady in particular struck me recently.   She was walking her eldest child to school, had one in a stroller and one walking next to her.  She was not on time, but looked like she really didn't care.  

She looked like she didn't HAVE a care in the world.  Her hair was brushed, her clothes stylish, and her children following like ducklings.  I thought to myself "I aspire to your Zen like existence.."  

Most of the parents at school know me.  They either know me personally, or KNOW me from my daily cat herding of the Vixen.   To my credit I do not skreach after her…well mostly don't….  but I do feel like a dishevelled mess most of the time.  

These fabled Zen Women are all around us… I sit and observe in awe


Tuesday, November 18, 2014

This

This again
http://spagsy.blogspot.com.au/2013/06/cut-it-out.html?m=1

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Life moves on.

I've decided not to renew the web hosting of spagsy.com 
I decided a while ago that I share too much online.
I do have some lose ends to tie up before I "go" about my life and my happy mess.

But not today. Today everything feels like too much. 

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Tweeting

For those of you who might not know. I gave up twitter for Lent.  And Ive logged in once since Easter and really had not missed it much.  And by the looks of it, I was not missed either.

I have been missing from the blog too - Im going through a phase where Im not sure what I really want out of spagsy.com let alone this blogpot one.

How much of me am I willing to share anymore?  To the masses…  the older i get the more inward i reflect and the more selective I am with those I share.  

This week has just highlighted a few things really.  People who are greatly inconvenienced or have fresh friendships have checked in on me.  And those whom I thought would shoot me a text or something didn't.   That paragraph makes it sound like I am cross.  Which is funny and another strike against blogging.   How the tone just isn't there.

I had a stellar day out on Tuesday with a new friend, who is Irish, so you know we laughed.  a lot.  And on Friday I had a good chuckle with a work colleague over an impromptu dinner.   Ive cried and laughed this week.  Ive tried to do some reading too.  I have set myself a goal and now I am not logged into twitter I am finding reading books a great substitute.

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Mental health

There has been a lot of talk about suicide lately.  I'm not going to profess to know everything so if you are looking for an education on the subject you best read something from www.beyondblue.org.au 

I read in a book that the opposite of happiness is unhappiness not depression.  I really liked that so kudos for Gretchin Rubin.  

One thing I will say to people who have no sympathy for the mentally ill is this; it is an illness. If someone is addicted to drugs and you wonder why they keep relapsing realise this; it is an illness. 

People with serious mental health issues struggle EVERY DAY.  Somedays the struggle is bigger than others, but just like a reformed smoker who thinks of smoking whenever they see a "non smoking" sign it is a daily fight. 

On really bad days the negative thoughts suddenly take the reins and you wonder firstly how you let it happen (they once the guilt sets in) you wonder  why. And what now. And why now. 

And why is it still happening. What is wrong with you that this "stuff" still bothers you- you're supposed to be stronger than this... all these insecurities that seemed to not weigh more than a handbag are now crushing your spirit. 

If you have been fortunate to have gotten support previously you pull out the toolkit and get to work.

There is a fork in the road and you choose. Some people choose the path with the least pain, others take the painful path and emerge on the other side.  After a while of this emotional rollercoaster, where each repeat on the ride hits you harder and dips you deeper you choose. Sometimes, for some, it feels like there is no choice.  You look at the people in your toolkit and feel like you have worn them down, that they are better off without you, that you are broken.... And you choose to end the pain.  Sometimes- just sometimes- there might be one person who you can't bear to hurt- someone who is bright eyed and optimistic, non judging.. Who doesn't even know their importance to you....that they inspire you to keep going. 

You might not know where the road is going and you have no long term plan but you know that deep down you ending YOUR pain will damage them so very much- so you just carry on. 

Slowly you crawl out and celebrate each rung of the ladder- the up and the down. Knowing each down rung enables you to realise you are going down before you hit the rock bottom again.

You just can't hit rock bottom again because you know- deep down if you do. You might not get back up. 

Americanah

I'm reading a book at the moment called Americanah - ok so I'm listening to someone else read the book.   It was recommended to me by a friend, Sam who loved it so much she recommends it to everyone. 

At first I thought why would she recommend this book to me? It's a story about a girl as a boy who were high school and college sweethearts and they are seperated; she to the United States (I cringed inside to hear it be called 'America' in this story- as if South America doesn't exist..but I will get to that later in my Goodreads review.) and he to London.  It's a commentary on African life, on her life in general and is supposedly seen through her eyes despite having a displaced feel about the narrative..

I'm not done with the book however I think I've worked out why it was recommended.  

The notion of an 'Americanah" in the book is how one is changed from living in the USA; nuances, turns of phrases that creep into your vernacular and dare I say a twang to the way you speak. 

When I came 'home' to spend Christmas 2005 family and friends had commented about a change in me- to this day I'm not sure if it was good or not- but a covert change.  My mother was convinced that I had an accent, which I laughed off.  My speech has changed so much over the years, and the more public speaking I do the more balanced and 'proper' it becomes. When I came home I spoke slower- something I adapted to doing not because I was living in rural Illinois, but because Melbournians speak so bloody fast!!  Coupled with a foreign accent and people had difficulty understanding me. So I just learnt to speak slower and remove the Aussie animation from my voice. 

I'm currently reading about the main character's culture shock and have had a few laugh out loud moments as I relived my own, mainly related to "American English".   Over time these things creep into our own culture (for example saying "you're all set" to indicate a readiness to leave or completion of a task). Overtime I just leaned to translate things automatically into "American" 

Being married to a Yank I do find the opposite is happening with Baz.  I recall his recounting from his first visit home asking where the rubbish bin was and he receiving a blank state until he finally realised his error and rephrased it to be the "trash can".  

I have also noticed a more open acceptance between our extende families over the years to ask "what do you mean" when we encounter these small idiosyncrasies of our mother tongue.  When my father in law was in town I recall him checking with me to see if he were using the correct word for rubbish bin- it was such a sweet gesture.  I loved it because had it been 16 years ago he would have just been that stereotypical yank who was crass an expected YOU to understand HIM.

I loved it because over the years of blending our cultures we have all rubbed off on each other.  It's a mutual respect for the way we do things "here" (wherever that may be) and more importantly (to me at least) has enabled is to expand our notion of "home". 


Photo taken 2009- GO CUBBIES!!

Monday, December 9, 2013

Christmas time I'm trying

Those of you who may have caught a blog post here and there over Christmas might remember me discussing how hard it is for me to get into Christmas despite not having had a huge tradition of singing carols with Dad.  (Link coming- I have to find the post) 


Well this year I'm really trying. Honestly. I really am.  I have resolved to do more than last year- which isn't hard because all I did was put the tree up...and next year I will resolve to do more than this year....

So I thought I would decorate- just a bit. In a way that is subtle and meaningful to me. 


The wreath is from our place overseas and the letters are left over from the art project in my entrance. For those who don't know we have a game of scrabble in the entry way worthy of pintrest.  

And I seasoned up our family portrait.

So while Eleanor slept Sebastian and I made life decorating elves and put up the tree and embellished the entry.

I don't think we are done but I think it will have to do for now.  

The million dollar question remains: will I go to midnight mass. I have not been since 2007.  The answer will be no.  If you had asked me this last Wednwsday when we decorated I would have said yes.  The strangest thing happened. I was talking to my friend about my resolution to do more this year than last and doin myself getting choked up when I mentioned midnight mass.  

And really, it's supposed to be a happy time, exciting and full of magic and anticipation for children from 8-92.... And Seb is getting that... And I don't want to mar all the progress I have made. I'm actually getting into the season too- playing carols in the house without crying. And that's an important start. 

So judge me if you like. I don't care. I have to answer to God only.