All posts filed under: personal

This time a week ago I was feeling like shit, thanks

And so was ‘H’. I’m sure you’ve read all about our argument in Episode 9 HERE, or the making up relief in the Update HERE. I just want to say a quick thank you to the variety of readers who commented, and offered advice or support. It truly helped me feel better. I’m sleeping more soundly because of you fellow bloggers in particular: Piglet in Portugal, who consoled me that she’d also had a ‘dummy spit’, but that mine was worse. DFMGhost, who told me to talk it out, and was flagging herself the same advice for the future too. gigglingfattie, who also advocated talking, with best wishes that it sort out. L. Rorschach over at BackInStilettosAgain reassured me that she feels exactly the same when she argues with a significant lover! Widdershins  (who met her wife online 13 years ago when they were living in Canada and Australia) told me to only give what I’m prepared to lose… And finally, Debbie over at ForgivingConnects reminded me to honour myself first, and speak my truth. It all helped. My real …

Update on Episode 9: the sign still applies (phew)

[EPISODE 9 HERE. Worth reading first]. Arguments suck! We all know that. Yet still they explode from seemingly nowhere. One minute everything is cute, cosy, safe and understanding; the next, it feels like the floor has dropped out of your world, and either one or both of you is willing to fight, flight or freeze your way to a land of Disconnection and possibly Sulks. It happens so fast, and furiously. Even for snails. Snails? What the hell do I mean? Well, my Love H is a Snail: slow, steady, sensitive to loud sounds and being startled, quick to retract into the shell, cautious to emerge. I’m more like a Crab: fast, sideways, big claw, unpredictable, fond of dark caves, difficult to prise out. Hard shell, sweet-bellied soft. But no matter your style, no matter your inner totem creature, you gotta T-A-L-K. Whether it’s immediately, or after 24 hours, someone’s gotta make the first move… *sound of crickets for a day and a night* Then H texted. But I’d already written a heartfelt email, I …

Episode 9 Online dating: How I had a tantrum, but found a kitten

This starts with scones for morning tea. An innocent trigger, exploding into a phone fight across 1600kms, as two feisty, stubborn women clash values. “You want space to process? Have the entire state of Victoria then! I am NOT going to text first” rants my inner Grumpy Avoidant dwarf in silence. Arms folded. Hackles up. Snarling. Feel sick though, down in the pit of my stomach. I know this isn’t right or healthy. Ring my dear friend R; launch myself into the story of the fight, feeling myself getting crosser, yet sadder. ‘Why don’t you have a tantrum about this, and see what lies beneath?’ she says. ‘You know, dance round the living room, thrash a pillow, see what you find?’ OK, I can do that. And I know the perfect song: Fatboy Slim ‘What the Fuck’  So I’m 50, and flailing arms, legs, head, like a toddler. I’m shaking out my brain, belly, butt, and bile. I fall to my knees, and pummel the couch. I’m spoilt, selfish, silly, and acting out all of …

Smashed eggshells drowning

We are on flood watch again. Last time this happened, due to Cyclone Debbie, we ended up with thigh-high water through my son’s garden-level bedroom: photos and story are all HERE. Nearby towns were devastated, and are literally only just recovering after 11 metres of brown filthy water rushed through the entire CBD. I hardly slept last night. I lay wake from 1.30 till at least 4am, tuning in to every increase or blessed pause in the rain’s fall. I kept picturing my garden 2 months ago, over and over, drowned by floodwater. I’d moved my car at midnight back then, just in time before the water went over the bottom of the doors; last night I kept worrying if I should get up to check it. Early this morning friends texted or called to see if I needed a hand, and I decided to keep ’17’ home from school. I’ve noticed I’m chewing on my tongue or my inner lips, and feel so on edge (plus exhausted). I’m kind of  hyper-vigilant, yet also numb. Expecting …

‘You have such a three-year pattern! Look at yourself, for god’s sake!’

The door slams. It’s 1994, in a hot Sydney summer, when even the fat cockroaches in our slummy student house look a bit sweaty. My friend R has left the living room, but her dark mood and comment lingers. I frown back, staring down her words. Am I really a 3-year addict? Does it matter? Obviously it does to her, but I’m not feeling that distressed. The sink pipe knocks as usual while I pour myself a glass of water; is our hopeless landlord ever going to fix that? Well, it won’t matter anyway, if I move out… I’ve lived here for a while now, and it feels like time for a change… to the beach maybe, over at Bondi. How long has it been, this inner city dwelling? Nearly 3 years of hot pavements, squashed terrace houses with fragrant frangipanis, the endless hum of cars and their exhaust fumes. Before that, it was a scruffy flat in Coffs Harbour, with greasy carpets, and peeling paint on all the weatherboards and windows. Did I live …

Watching her cry from across the world

In bed, snuggled with cat, computer, and early morning cuppa. Click link on generic Facebook newsfeed. Suddenly watching a grief-stricken Mum, mourning her lost daughter after the bomb blast in Manchester. See her blotched red face, and the grey roots of her dull brown hair. Notice her own mother sitting beside her, and perhaps that’s her son, sitting on the floor at her feet, holding her hand with his head bowed? See her swollen eyes and running nose, thickening her voice, wailing for her lost baby. And as my own tears fall softly, think: ‘This is the true good of social media; we can share our vulnerabilities and losses. Her life has just been fucking ruined, and she’s sharing a miniscule amount of her pain on this day with us. She’s held in this nightmare by her family who love her, and she’s not alone. Thank god she’s not alone.’ We are all in mourning, all across the world, all the time: for our lost family members or friends, our beloved dead pets, our forgotten dreams. …

Down the long lane

Originally posted on bone&silver:
My mother, who lives in England, turned 80 on July 4. From Australia, I had organised a 3-day weekend get together in an old farmhouse on Dartmoor for our closest relatives, meaning 13 of us met up to celebrate. I hauled myself over to the UK, begrudging all those people who sleep easily on planes. Still, four good films in a row aren’t bad going. A couple of weeks before I left, I treated myself to a massage. As usual, I wondered why I don’t do it more often? It was such a lush experience, with hot white towels softly lowered over me, and warm wheat-bags resting along each limb, feeding the air with that fresh bread scent. No tinny dolphin music, just silence. It was in a private home, so no exterior noise, or impatient clients waiting outside the door for us to finish. The masseur created a wonderful sense of nurturing, with her deliberate, knowledgeable movements, and I sank into the experience. I’d had a horrible cough…

Gift from teenage son…

I heard ‘Almost17’ in the shower at 6am (we had to leave for the airport at 7); he soon came into my room fully dressed, with still-damp hair, where I lay in bed reading before getting up. Him: Move over Mum. Me: [Really??] OK Sweetie. [Sliding over, slightly stunned, but pretending I’m cool…] Him: Happy Mother’s Day. Me: Thanks. You know I think it’s a load of Hallmark crap don’t you, but that’s still lovely, thank you. Are you bringing me peppermint tea in bed? Him: No, I’m too tired. I didn’t get home from the party till 1am. *Rolls on his side away from me*. Spoon me Mum. Me: [REALLY??] OK Sweetie. [Spooning behind him, completely stunned, gingerly resting my arm on top of him and the quilt because, you know, I’m Cool…] Him: No, properly Mum, under the covers. Please let me sleep for another 15 minutes. Me: Sure honey… *Lie there holding my baby boy as he begins to twitch and dream, breathing deeply. For how many nights did I hold him until …

The 3 Dwarves of Attachment: Grumpy, Stressy, & Happy (AKA Avoidant, Anxious, & Secure)

Ever wondered why some dates lead you to sex, romance, or even love, while others leave you cold? Have you dumped someone as soon as it got too intimate or demanding? Or endlessly analysed online messages, and started ‘deep & meaningful’ conversations, seeking reassurance? Alternatively, perhaps you’ve been happily committed to your ‘best friend’ for 20+ years, and have no idea what I’m talking about? Attachment Theory suggests that our experience of being parented deeply informs our neural pathways, which are committed to repeating familiar patterns- a genetic programming designed to keep us ‘safe’, close to the tribe, and able to navigate back to the cave easily. As I’ve said HERE before, after reading ‘Attached’, I’ve know I’ve been happily Avoidant, and now at the ripe old age of 50, am trying to change that. This dog WILL learn new tricks! As I reflect on friends, past lovers and partners, of any gender, I use my body wisdom to remind me what dynamic we were in together: Holding me at arm’s length (as I did …