All posts filed under: personal

Long distance relationships: stretching the thread

Have you ever gone out with someone from across the state? Or what about in a different country altogether? My love and I are spending 6 weeks apart. That’s 42 sleeps. Which includes one of us travelling 17,000 kms away, to France and the UK. It doesn’t seem like much really, in the overall timetable of a Life… Except it also feels like FOREVER. Perhaps you live with someone already? Then imagine not seeing, smelling, touching, hearing nor tasting them for 6 weeks. Not good huh? Similar to missing your children too I guess; I always miss my tall, smelly, hairy, smartypants son like crazy, even though I know I have to ‘be cool’, letting him spread his wings and fly. But I don’t want to be like that with a special new lover. I want to dive in then wallow, spending days in heavy-lidded bliss. Spending hours talking, revealing, learning, wondering, sharing. To proclaim difference, and delight in the similar. To explore cafes, cuisines, cuddles and values. To get shamelessly high on endorphins, oxytocin, …

Jetlag’s gone. So I’m back. With a Soft Linger in Puppet Lane…

Maybe it’s having another birthday pass without hearing from him? Or travelling in France, where he spent so many years? Or simply because I was in the UK seeing Mum? Whatever the reasons, last week I drove home from work in a nearby town, and a vivid memory bubble burst across my steering wheel. Because as well as blogging, I’m a performer. I do street theatre, festivals, corporate gigs, and community events like parades, fundraisers, and cabarets. It’s a great [varied] job, I’m pretty good at it, and have been doing it in various incarnations for almost 25 years: My memory bubble was from 2005: Dad had flown from his home in Canada to visit for 3 weeks, and I was performing in a cabaret fundraiser at local queer pub The Winsome. The venue was packed, and noisy. Lots of flamboyant folk were being flamboyant, while the MC was being very funny. I asked for a simple introduction, and settled myself quietly on the floor with my large black garbage bag. The crowd wasn’t taking …

What was my 51st birthday present, you’re wondering?

I waited 3 weeks, carrying it with me from Australia to France, under instructions not to open it. So at last the moment came, at 1am on birthday morning in my cute orange tent under the walnut trees (which was absolutely my birthday good and proper in Oz)! It was a 2nd hand book. A kid’s book. A classic, nostalgia-filled, heart-warming kid’s book, which sat on every single bookcase in Australia (and America? Did you have one?). Except… H ripped out all the pages. So I got the cover: And then I got the inside cover, where clumsy young fingers would proudly print their names: Then as you can see from the chickens, it all went a bit rogue and unpredictable! And that’s because dearest H is the most amazing collage/graphic artist, and spent hours making me a unique record and interpretation of our dating journey, from the first cheeky email in October, to the meeting under the Flinders St clocks in Melbourne just before Xmas, and so on and so on and so on. …

By the way, I’m being teased from afar

It’s my 51st birthday in 5 days. Last year I was in Paris, watching fireworks at the Palace of Versailles, and cycling all over the city with my old lover, staying in 2 different apartments. This time, I’m choosing the simplicity of staying still in the Barn with family. But my dear, sweet, online love ‘H’ will [obviously] not be around to celebrate with me. A few days before I left Australia however, H handed me a package: ‘I made you this for your birthday. Don’t open it till the actual day.’ ARE YOU KIDDING ME?? That’s so cruel! How can I resist it? ‘And don’t hassle me about what it might be; I’m not going to tell you.’ But H, how can I not try to guess? Obviously it’s a book of some kind… Maybe I could just peek in a corner? Later, my son ‘17’ said: ‘You could just open it before your birthday but not tell H.’ [This suggestion reveals so much about the teenage brain, doesn’t it?]. For a naughty moment, …

‘We can’t let you keep the hamster. It’s too dangerous.’

And with that, Lulu my best friend was taken away forever. Prised from my soft 6-year old hands, holding tightly to her special travel cage. I got one last glimpse of her ginger coat and black eyes before the security door slammed shut, and the full force of my tears and rage flooded me. Mum protested. ‘This is ridiculous! A hamster can’t have Rabies; she’s never even left the house, except for today.’ Met by an official silence, I wailed harder and louder, realizing it was the only power I had. Fellow ferry passengers tutted or shook their heads, while I screamed at the men in uniforms that I hated them AND their stupid country. So that was the beginning of my long-held, ongoing animosity towards England, small men in authority, and rules that can’t be bent or broken. I also think it was the birth of my Separation Anxiety. I said the first of many goodbyes to my beloved Dad that day, in ferry terminals, railway stations, and especially airports, as Mum and he …

6 nights in a row, but who’s counting? Well me, obviously.

I love my space so much. On the fortnights that my son ’17’ is with his Dad, step-mum, and 2 little brothers, I LOVE having my home to myself. Sometimes I don’t wash up for 3 days, piling the dishes without shame on the counter top. I’ll write or read all day if I’m not working, and quite happily just have crackers & humous for dinner . Or else I’ll clear the chairs and rug out of the way, and have a wild 5Rhythms dance session in the kitchen/living room, to the amusement of the cat. I particularly love my bed space. Not only do I sleep like a starfish, but a diagonal one at that. In summer, I love to dangle one heel off the mattress edge, sticking it out sideways into the cooler air. Sometimes I toss and turn, especially now that I’m a bit ‘warm-flushy’ as I move through menopause, and will throw off the covers then re-burrow myself at erratic intervals. And more than anything, I hate being woken up. By an …

Blissed lissed. Or blist list.

Gratitude means feeling like the luckiest woman in the world, and humbly saying thank you for: Airport greetings Slow-cooked dinner as soon as we walk in the door Warm, clean, safe home to sleep in Noisy, cheery tropical bird dawn chorus Tangerine sorbet skies behind palm trees out of the bedroom window Talking; listening; looking; holding. Resting. Remembering why we’re doing this. Beach walks Farmer’s Market fresh organic food, and bumping into friends A Swing Dance lesson on the sand Painting a teenager’s bedroom walls white as a surprise for when he comes back from his Dad’s Tasty snacks and peppermint tea Talking; listening; looking; holding. Resting. Remembering why. Quiet times: you do your thing, I’ll do mine Cat cuddles. Cat meows. Cat cuteness. And my favourite? Siestas in the soft winter sun    

Comparison between 1st long distance romance visit prep, & 3rd [Don’t read this one, ‘H’ my love]

1st: Car cleaned inside and out 3rd: It’s fine. 1st: Lawns mowed, & edges snipped by professionals 3rd: It’s fine. I’ll do it if I have time 1st: All floors vacuumed and mopped (I only mop once every 3 months to be honest) 3rd: Hope I have time to vacuum 1st: Bathroom shower scrubbed with serious anti-mould stuff 3rd: It’s fine 1st: $170 worth of specialty groceries/organic juices/mineral water bottled at glacier source by albino virgins in single-use-only cotton gloves 3rd: So what’s wrong with tap water anyway? 1st: Gourmet meals planned & prepared, including several desserts 3rd: Shit, I hope I’ve got time to chuck a pot of soup on… maybe ‘H’ can cook… 1st: Haircut/facial/toenails painted 3rd: Aren’t I just loved for my quirky mind & honest, funny blog posts? I won’t go on; I know you get the idea. But it’s only 3 more sleeps now!

bread & butter Vs death: the neuroscience of Arguing

#1. You [with soft tone]: ‘Sorry I’m late for the movie, I thought you said it started at 7 not 6. And the traffic was terrible.’ Me: ‘ I feel pretty annoyed you’re so late, but I guess we can see the 8pm session, or just go home? Maybe we need to check in re the exact movie time on the actual day, so this doesn’t happen again?’ You: ‘I’m so sorry darlin, I felt really bad when I realised I was letting you down. Let’s see the 8pm, and I’ll buy the popcorn. Hug me for a moment first though.’ This is a ‘bread & butter’ misunderstanding and reaction (i.e. just an everyday disagreement). The exchange is clear: You made a genuine mistake, and have owned it, apologised, and given the injured party the power to decide what happens next. Both of you decided to reassure the other that they were still important and cared about, despite the mix-up. Plus long hugs are calming. #2. You [in brusque tone]: ‘Sorry I’m late for the …

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 …