Quietly confident…

I have a just had a really lovely weekend.

I did things I’ve never done and went places I’ve never been before.

I did these things without stressing myself out of going… okay there were some concerns about how to get there and where to park and what to wear and what to pack and if I needed a jacket and if my lipstick was too red.

Saturday afternoon I went on a photo walk with strangers and I was happy, chatty, (possibly slightly silly) me.

I was confident in myself in the company of people with far superior skills to me.

I was happy to be me.

Then I surprised my husband with dinner and a show at a comedy venue.

The food was very basic, the comedians were late coming on and not entirely hilarious but we had a nice night out together doing something different.

Sunday morning we woke up late and without a harsh word spoken (have you tried to get two boys dressed lately?) got the family ready and drove to an adventure park.

I resolutely decided not to pack my swimwear as it was too cold to swim but ended up buying some shorts and going down water slides in a white singlet top.

(Yep. You’re welcome.)

I am able to do more and be more right now. I’m not worried about the small things or the big things either.

She’ll be right mate.

It’s all good.

Bring it on.

So much younger than today…

A little boy in one of my classes yesterday started several stories with “when I was young”.

He is 4.

This makes me smile so hard.

The stories he tells of his youth.

The things he used to do before he became a big boy.

Anyway just a brief reminder to all that we are privileged enough to be getting older all the time.

And further away from our youth.

And old enough to remember when we were young.

xx

One of the better ones…

As a serial whinger of bad days I should probably also take time to document the good ones.

Yesterday was one of the better days that I’ve had in a while.

Woke up on the right side of the universe.

Enjoyed my porridge with summer berries in bed with my book.

And a coffee. And then another coffee because I think the machine is still running a bit too fast.

But I digress.

I went food shopping with the kids and nobody died.

The 5 year old nearly ran into a little old lady using a walking stick in the baking aisle but other than that it was good.

We made it home and I got to watch some cricket on the telle while eating the very last mince tart of the season.

I made a huge batch of bolognese sauce in the slow cooker and then ended up freezing it in batches because the family all went bowling.

We had fun.

I had fun.

I kept bowling to the left though. Not sure what that’s about.

It was a good day.

(And that was without me even mentioning that I bought 2 large tins of chocolates for $8.)

I’m not sure what made it such an okay day. I wish I did so that I could replicate it.

But thank heavens for small mercies or something like that.

A good day amidst a sea of blue leaves me looking on the bright side.

x

My version of normal…

Had quite a crap day today but I’m okay. I’m happy. I’m breathing in deep and exhaling all slow and with a weird reggae rhythmic motion.

I am channeling all the Marley’s and swinging my dread locks to the beat in my head.

I have been busy for 12 solid hours now. This is the first time I’ve stopped all day. I’m exhausted. But some people work much longer hours than me and probably feel this tiredness in their bones on a regular basis.

I like to have rests. And coffees without being interrupted and breakfast while it’s hot.

I would like to be able to go to the toilet at home and/or at work without a small child calling out my name in a shrill and whinging manner.

I’m hiding in the spare room. After carefully folding, sorting and putting away the washing so that I could move the clothes horse and sit down on the couch in comfort.

I’m hiding from my busy day. My brain is fried. I just realised I forgot to call someone back and I didn’t RSVP to the 5th birthday party this Sunday.

But I’m happy and good and grumpy and almost pimple free.

I’m sleeping on the couch again tonight because it’s better than lying (muttering bad thoughts under my breath) next to my husband with his horrid cough and chest infection.

I am not sick. I am not sad. I am not sure where I left my other pink jumper. I sometimes wear gumboots when it’s not raining and I sometimes have licorice for lunch.

There is no normal or usual. There is just today and the version that I lived. Tomorrow will be different. It may seem longer or shorter as different things will make me laugh.

But I laugh a lot. So that’s good.

Feeling bubbly…

So it’s that time of year again. Or is it that time of years?

Plenty of people will be partaking in some bubbly tonight. Seeing in the New Year with fizz and bubbles tickling their taste buds and noses.

I will see in the New Year in my own bubble. I’ve been stuck (albeit pleasantly) in my own bubble floating around for the past month or so.

I am breathing deeper.

Things are a little fuzzy in a nice way. I know that I’m feeling happier but not quite sure if I trust it or how long it will last.

There are still big things that I would like to change but can’t. I’m mostly okay with that and am trying to enjoy while enduring the things that I just have to live with.

I’ve had a few days lately where I’ve just sat for extended periods of time in the company of friends. I know that I’m relaxed and comfortable but not sure that I’m expressing it right.

I went to a party for the first time in years. I wanted to be around people. Not just my people but other people’s people too. I was in good form. I snuggled up with a baby and transformed my ample bosom into a place of rest.

I have no idea how long this bubble will last. I don’t know if it’s the new me, the old me or the medication. Possibly a combination of all three.

But for now it’s all good.

No really, it is.

Eggshell heart…

I seem to be taking a lot of things personally at the moment.

If anyone says anything even remotely critical to me I feel like I’ve let them down. And let myself down. And let the universe down.

Have you noticed my tendency to overreact?

I have been feeling so good lately. Life’s gotten more manageable.

I’ve carved my life into bite size pieces and it’s like popcorn chicken for the soul.

I’ve managed without my afternoon nap for 3 days now which is a new record. I have maintained an almost steady level of cool, calm and collectedness.

I just can’t cope with people being unhappy with me.

I am working so damn hard at being happy with me that any cracks that I could usually smooth over now make me feel like I’m dancing the Zorba with tectonic plates.

Of course it is all in my head. People probably don’t even realise that I am taking their words/actions/non-actions to heart so much right now. It’s my fault not theirs.

It’s harder to be happy when you’re second guessing yourself off the metaphorical cliff.

Plato said “Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle”.

Be kind to yourself too.

xx

With friends like these… I’ll be okay.

Well would you look at that…

I just had the most delightful dinner with a friend that I haven’t seen for close to 5 years.

She is gorgeous this lady. Inside and out.

We chatted over the spinach lamb dish.

I walked her to the tram stop and we hugged.

We talked about lots of things. We seem to be feeling a lot of the same things. We share the same frustrations.

We also both know that we’re incredibly lucky to have what we have.

And what do we have?

We have healthy happy children who drive us mad with their idiosyncrasies and neediness but fill our hearts with love… usually when they’re asleep.

We have husbands who work hard and travel lots to provide for their families but are good at what they do and let us know that we’re loved.

We have dreams of more and desires to be better than just mothers and wives but we know that we’re doing okay.

So what do I know now that I didn’t know 3 hours ago?

I know that I’m okay. That I’m not alone. That friends are worth their weight in gold even if you have to get on a plane to see them. That people who are like you and listen to you and make you laugh are a gift to be treasured.

And whether its a friend from far away or a friend who brings you bolognese or a friend who laughs at you because you’re up late with your cat watching cricket, friends are precious.

I was asked today who my friends are and I said that I wasn’t sure anymore.

But they seem to know who I am and are doing a damn good job of looking after me and for that I’m thankful.

A happiness list.

Right. So. I seem to be coming across a little bit lost and sad in my recent posts. Which is probably a fair indicator of where my head is at right now.

But there are still things that make me happy. A lot of things. And strangely enough I seem to be enjoying these happy moments more.

Happy moments are brighter. Clearer. Funnier. Warmer. Lovelier.

So I decided to make a list. I know I’ve done this before. But I need to do it again.

These are some of the things that lift me out of my fog at the moment:

– Songs that make me happy. One of my faves is “You make me happy” by Claire Bowditch. I like this because its obvious and direct. I appreciate that.

– Songs that seem to understand my sad like “Details in the fabric” by Jason Mraz (featuring James Morrison). There is a line that says “hold your own, know your name and go your own way”. I like that.

– I like baths and showers at the moment. I can’t seem to get warm enough without them. I may not be myself but I’ve never been cleaner.

– I like my new brand of muesli. And it was on special this week so I bought 2 boxes and felt smug for hours.

– I love my new clock.

– I love my $8 jeans.

– I love reading 2 books at once. Even though its only because one is a bit too scary for me to read at night on my own but I’m really enjoying the fluffy romance one too.

– I am happy that there are people I can be myself with and that listen to me without judging me and provide me with some much needed perspective.

– I am thrilled that a man in a cafe practically begged me to sing “Benny and the Jets” loudly in public. (Practically begged being somewhat of an exaggeration but I did it anyway.)

– I like wearing my new beanie.

– I like my spotted pj’s.

– I am a recent convert to chilli hot chocolates for reasons that need to be tasted to believed.

And yeah. That’s probably enough for now. Those are the things that are bringing me joy.

Life is a bit like a fog and there are moments when the fog rolls in and it seems thick enough for planes to be diverted.

But there are times when the fog lifts and the things above as well as the love and craziness from my family make me laugh… out loud!

Some unasked for advice free of charge…

An open letter to Generation, um, whatever we’re up to now,

You might think I’m old.

I’m clearly not. I’m funky, hip and cool.

What’s that? We don’t use those words anymore?

Sorry.

But here are some things I think that I know:

– You won’t be happy all the time. That’s normal. It’s called life. It’s nobody’s fault so don’t look to blame anyone. Find something to do, maybe help someone and the happy will come back.

– Not all your friends are your friends.
And even the friends that are your friends won’t always have time for you. That’s okay too. If you’re upset about it maybe help someone else and make new friends.

– Drinking single origin coffee doesn’t make you better than anyone else (and you know you can’t tell the difference anyway). Save up all those 50 cents and use them to help someone else.

– The rest of us don’t owe you anything but if you want to watch, learn and work hard then the only thing you’ll owe is gratitude. Which can be paid forward when you help others.

(Goodness me! Someone pass me a tissue. I think I got a blood nose while sitting up here I on my moral high horse.)

So anyway… maybe this next generation is going to be so well informed that they know all this anyway.

Or maybe they’ll be so busy capturing and tagging life that they will forget to look for those that they can help.

And to clarify you can help without giving money.

You can help with your time, commitment, love, respect and listening to the people who want to talk.

That’s all.

From me.

P.S Yeah. I think I might Cc myself on this letter.

Showing contentment with my confidence in satisfaction.

Hello! It’s me. The over thinker (and by extension over sharerer) here.

I was asked recently if I was happy and having thought about it for a while I’m not really sure.

I looked up the definition of the word.
1. Feeling or showing pleasure or contentment.
2. Having a sense of confidence in or satisfaction with (a person, an arrangement or situation).

So um yeah. I guess that I am happy most of the time but for some reason the word happy in my head conjures up the image of a child laughing on a swing.

Not weird. Okay. Maybe a bit.

So why do I think I’m not happy? I’m not sure. Possibly I’m not LOLing enough. Hmmmpphhh. Or maybe I am waiting for someone to tell me that I’m happy.

Is there a Minister for happiness who will let me know? Hey you. Yeah. Quick. You’re happy right now. Enjoy.

I had a lot of happy moments today. A perfect Bircher muesli. Multiple good coffees. Snakes and Ladders with the kids. Ice Cream and DVD with my husband.

Lots of good moments that I enjoyed. Where I felt happy. With people who make me happy. With people that keep me happy.

A little part of me is scared that if I rely on others to provide my happiness then I’m not really in control. I like being in control. Not in a freaky way (see what I did there).

So sometimes I feel the need to be away from the people who make me happy to see if I can do it on my own. So I go to the gallery. Read my book in a cafe. Go for long walks while listening to my iPod and questioning how well my shuffle really understands me.

And now to finish (because let’s face it this whole tirade is beginning to feel disjointed and nonsensical) I want to tell myself to shut up. To stop worrying about my emotions and feelings and just feel them. To live the life of an emoticon. To just be… Or not be and not ask so many questions.