#2016 Simple laughter, simple things

I felt a familiar lockdown feeling wafting over me today as the sun shone through the window, and I set off to work from home yet again.

It was this flat, gnawing feeling of unsettledness. Of unsatisfaction.

I did my best to remind myself that all was good in my world, and even argued with some of my thoughts. I reasoned that it was lockdown blues, yet again, making their presence known.

I’ve grown to get used to their presence, and even allow them to pull up a chair at the table.

Just as I finished work, I came across a hilarious Sooshi Mango video. If you haven’t seen these guys and you’re of European descent, you MUST check them out. Anyway I watched this latest vid, gasping from breath and nearly crying, and quickly went to share it into the messenger group chat of the Sooshi Mango fan club.

Otherwise known as, me and my four friends. 🤣🤣

I had to share the joy. It was a quick share, a comment here, comment there… insert some laughing emojis, some OMGs, and all was good.

All was good in the world.

And it had me thinking… how lovely it is that I have this group with my friends, where we just come and go, drop in random stuff about our lives, share memes and jokes and more personal stuff, and some of us comment, some of us don’t, but you know what?

It’s all ok. We move on. We don’t take it personally.

You know those people where you feel as if you are walking on eggshells constantly? You need to watch what you say, how you say it, and then you need to check in, ALL THE TIME. If you haven’t spoken to them, you need to justify why, and I HATE justifying.

Like, life, that’s why.

That’s what I love about this messenger group we have, and that’s why I love my friends. We are bloody mature people. There are no freaking games and bullshit.

We drop in, we laugh, we comment.

We move on.

And then the next day/week, we pop in again, and it’s like the conversation never ended.

I was thinking all of this, feeling super proud of us, and then I realised…

I had a lot more to be grateful for than I first thought.

Those lockdown blues, I chased them away. 💖🥰

Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com

#1631 Day 133 of getting there: happy for 6 more weeks

It sounds ridiculous, but…

I was actually excited about the stage 4 restrictions imposed today.

EXCITED. Wow. I never would have thought that weeks ago, I’d be happy to be in even further lockdown, and over my birthday month period out of all times!

But I am. I am more than happy to sacrifice my birthday this year, so that people actually get their act together.

I am more than happy to sacrifice, because honestly, being with my family and friends, HEALTHY, and being able to see them this year, means more to me, than going through what we were going through up until Christmas, or God knows when.

People not listening. Arguing with authority. Claiming personal rights, freedom!

Freedom to what, die?

Are your beliefs that strong, that stubborn, that important, that you are willing to risk endangering your family members lives over people like you not adhering to the rules?

You are willing for them to die over incompetent idiots such as yourselves?

I AM NOT. I am not willing to do that. Watching the so-called enlightened ones on social media is absolutely frustrating, because I find it insane on a whole other-worldly level, that this is a conspiracy, and the whole world, really, the WHOLE WORLD, are in on it.

Sit with that for a second. That insane, impossible concept, if you are such an enlightened one too. Go on.

I’ve refrained until now. And now is when I say – GOOD.

Good, that we are getting further lockdown.

So, that’s where I’m at. Happy. Relieved. Actually planning what other home jobs I can do in that time…

And hopeful that it will be over soon, and we can throw a belated birthday party. 🙂

Because it’s never too late. 😉

#1597 Day 99 of getting there: the cat-astic third iso puzzle

It had to happen.

Winter spreading germs, and people are shit.

JUST STAY HOME!

Lucky for me, I somehow forecast this crap ( I have become strongly accustomed to expecting all kinds of shit, yes even for this glass half-full gratitude gal) and last week when baby girl was at school, came across this $16 puzzle at ‘the cheap shop.’

You know, ‘the cheap shop.’ That budget dollar shop where you’ll find onesies, kitchen accessories, cat litter bags, 50 cent greeting cards, 57 different variety of candles, a range of quirky homewares you think you need (but really you don’t) and also, some kind of party/decorating station in one corner of the shop.

All at below reasonable prices.

It was here I went “a puzzle might come in handy soon.”

And I had to get the most trickiest one yet.

A billion cat faces, mwa ha ha.

It meant that today, we had to pack up the completed Frozen puzzle that’s adorned our dining room table for the past several weeks.

If you find and follow me on Insta, you’ll see the delicious anti-OCD video action.

(Psst, @smikgwriter)

Anyway, we learnt upon opening it tonight that it’s split up into 6 categories… that is, A, B, C, D, E and F. Those letters are at the back of each puzzle piece, so by sorting them alphabetically, well half the work is kinda done.

Such a great idea. Well, we better get cracking then…

#1575 Day 77 of getting there: the shopping centre drought-breaker

I feel obliged, to justify myself.

Even though I HATE when people justify. Because when people justify, they aren’t trying to convince you…

They’re trying to convince themselves.

Like, stop making excuses for whatever it is you’re making excuses for. I once told a serial justifier, to stop justifying themselves, THAT’S how much I can’t stand it.

And yet I find myself in the same predicament today.

Having to justify myself, to you.

Or me, I guess?

That’s the state of our hyper-alert, alarmed and aware world at the moment, isn’t it?

Because even though it’s been 3 months that I’ve –

Seen my family.

Gone anywhere.

Gone anywhere AT ALL.

Oh, just grocery shopping…

Target, once.

And today… it was 3 months ’til we’ve been to a shopping centre!

Yes, 3 months, as of today. The drought was broken.

I was second guessing this morning… Like, should we? There are 5 reasons to go out amidst these ongoing restrictions, and heading to a massive shopping centre… well maybe if I tell you what we got you can decide for yourself how ‘essential’ the trip was.

Hubbie got new work jeans.

I needed new jeans… I’d worn in the last ones and they were literally bursting at the seams.

We needed new pillows.

A small toy for baby girl (because entertainment, and sanity?)

And also, Hubbie got some Michael Jordan clothes, like the rest of the world has gone to do after watching The Last Dance, such was the low stock we experienced in the sports store.

So all in all, it was’ kinda,’ ‘sorta,’ ‘not really,’ and ‘absolutely’ essential shopping…

We were amazed at the volume of people. Just astounded. There were actually droves of people everywhere, and the 1.5 metre rule was out the window… people didn’t care. You were lucky to get half a metre of space between you and the next stranger, change rooms were open, and people were so nuts they were even brushing past and making physical contact (shock horror!) as they flew around.

Where are the restrictions? Not at Chaddy today, NO WAY.

Were they doing ‘essential’ shopping? Should I even be questioning them at all when we were there ourselves, adding to it?

Have we been too strict all this time? Or are people letting go of the reigns, and letting the horses roam the fields big time now that cases are starting to stabilise?

This will be up for discussion in a future Friday night conversation, to be sure.

I still don’t know what is acceptable, if we should’ve gone, and if any of this is worth it. If any of these restrictions are worth it when people are congregating together despite the rules.

Despite the rules, we still applied hand sanitiser, at every twist and turn. Entering a shop… exiting a shop. It was everywhere, as well as two tubes I had in my bag.

As we said before we left the house –

“If someone looks at you, sanitise.”

“If someone smiles, sanitise.”

“If someone looks like they’re going to fart, sanitise.”

We did it all day long.

And how can I forget the most important purchase today…

Two new records. Two new albums to add to our slowly growing collection, and two musical artists/bands who I admire with all I have.

Now that, is for the soul. That IS essential.

#1487 As the sun sets on Summer…

I was so cranky this afternoon.

I felt like I was about to explode.

Mostly, I had the SHITS, majorly, about this whole stupid toilet paper situation.

(Yes, deliberate pun).

Almost everyone has gone insane.

It’s like a dog eat dog world… already people are fighting over toilet paper (why this particular sanitary item I have no idea) so can you imagine what would happen if there was an immediate and very real threat to our health… can you imagine then what would happen?

I don’t want to.

I got home from training, and HAD to turn my head around from all the mumbo-jumbo.

I had to make it better.

The weather was meeting me half-way there… so I had to make the rest of the trip.

To the beach.

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Within minutes I felt all my crazy melting away into the, what was initially very mild waters, to suddenly ICE COLD ones.

It was a short trip, but it got me away from the routine if only for a bit, and for that I am thankful.

Was this the end of our beach trips for this Summer season? I have no idea. It’s always a sad realisation, wondering if this will be the last visit, thinking the next one may be a good 7-8 months away…

SO LONG AWAY.

But, I will always have sunsets. And those are pretty damn amazing, all year round.

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#1217 Parenting under a disco ball

You know it’s hard having kids.

And a lot of parents nowadays shit me with their attitude about having them.

Because, they don’t get it, but… they want it ALL.

They wanna have kids, but they also want to have the exact same life they used to have before kids. They want mini versions of themselves, but they don’t want to do the work needed to actually raise them and be responsible about it all. They think having little people will be fun, but they want everything to be constant cupcakes, lollipops and games.

Guess what? Suck it up.

As my Mum always says… something has to give. You honestly cannot have it all. And I am a glass half-full gal talking here. And if you think you are managing to have it all…. guess what?

You are not ‘giving’ where it is important. Sorry not sorry.

What I am talking about has nothing to do with giving things up in your life. Sure, you can still do the things you enjoy… to an extent. You see, it is about a whole lot of compromise and sacrifice. Like, shitloads of it.

Things I was thinking of tonight as I was out with my family.

Because it was a family function you see, and we have no babysitters to look after baby girl for anything like this, like EVER… but also, baby girl being at the stage and age she is at, we actually want her to come with us.

So let’s say, our intentions lie somewhere there in the middle.

But boy, it is still HARD.

Especially when they find themselves pissed off for no apparent reason.

It was a roller coaster ride I swear.

It was frustrating, and tiring, and long, and honestly I was pulling my hair out at times, wanting to bash my head against the toilet cubicle wall, so shitty I became with some events of the night.

With the words ‘sacrifice’ going through my head.

So we did. In the name of looming beds, and family, and a happier child, we went home… we sacrificed. But not before baby girl pulled me onto the dance floor.

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And you see… as shit as times like this can sometimes be… that mirror ball and that girl, still make it all worth it.

All the sacrifice.

#1169 Philosophy and the Drive Home

Another drive home from being out, and another philosophical D&M.

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Photo by Luigi Manga on Unsplash

The ingredients for this baked matter that seems to happen almost on a weekly basis now?

A dash of a day of drinking

A heavy sprinkle of a long drive home

And almost a necessity, 1 full cup of a sleeping baby girl in the back seat.

“Imagine Mister F.” Hubbie is giving me an example on his latest ‘thing.’

“Mister F is so scared when he hears our heavy footsteps around the house, or we close a door suddenly… imagine what he went through before coming to us to feel and act like that.”

He goes on. “Now imagine I hold that against him. I hold that weakness, that insecurity against him. I should be helping him! Reassuring him. It’s not his fault.”

I pause. “Yeah but Mister F is not attacking me is he? It’s a lot easier to help someone that is scared and isn’t out to get you… but take someone who is having a go at you, and how likely are you to want to help them out of love and care? How easy is it then?”

Clearly, we are not in Kansas anymore Toto, just as we clearly are not solely talking about our cat’s fear of our footsteps.

We are talking about something else entirely.

And in this scenario…. he is being the peacekeeper. The lover. The diffuser.

And meanwhile, I am being the fighter. Throwing Karma back in people’s faces. Going all “GRRR, ARGH!”

We are on polar opposites of this discussion.

As we drive, it literally feels like I am ripping my hair out. It drives me insane that we are on these opposite ends, and still, I understand where he is coming from, I see the peace inherent in adopting such an attitude…

I just can’t get there, myself, personally… YET.

Because I want to, just as much as I don’t want to, and this is where the battle lies. The battle with making people pay, making them hurt as much as they have hurt you… yeah sure, very ‘un-gratitude like’ for me, but some people just push my buttons, and unfortunately I can’t just press a special red button and expel them from the earth’s atmosphere. So yeah. That’s me in a really RAW nutshell.

But I listen to him. I imagine the scenarios. And though it shits me to no end, I still enjoy these talks. These debates. These to’s, and fro’s.

These talks that make us open our eyes, better ourselves, and want something more.

All when we are driving home in the car. Who said long drives were boring?

In an aside… what do YOU think?

Can you see yourself helping someone who has hindered you and hurt you? Who has failed to say sorry?

Can you move past that, forget it all, and treat them, well? With no recognition of the hurt that has passed?

Even if you feel the respect they owe to you, is all but gone?

Can you be the first to reach out and help them, when they were the first with the right-hand blow?

Could you???

 

 

#1130 The Papa ‘yang’ to my Mama ‘yin’

“What?” I whispered furiously into the phone. “I’m going to talk to her teacher tomorrow.”

“Relax,” replied Hubbie. “It’s a part of being a kid, it’s a part of learning. She has to learn how to deal with stuff like this.”

SIGH. One day it was awards, the next day it was ‘playground intimidation.’

Dum da dum dum.

As it is with kids, adults, hell everyone in ALL of life… things go up. And things go –

DOWN.

It was nothing major. But when I called Hubbie from work to see how the school drop-off went, he informed me that some girls had blocked her from accessing the monkey bars. They had rudely informed her she could NOT go through.

“How did she act?”

“She was just staring… she was standing up on those bars so she was actually higher than them, looking down.”

“Good, so she was higher than them… then what?”

“Well they all stared at each other and then the girls walked off, and baby girl went on the monkey bars. I was glad she stood her ground.”

Huh. Well that was ok, I guess. Still, I got frustrated again when he told me about their line-up before entering the classroom.

“… and then she asked one girl to be her partner, but that girl was mucking about and said no, she had another partner, so baby girl then had no partner.”

“Oh no.”

“And I said ‘I’ll be your partner baby girl!’ But then they started walking and that same girl who had been mucking about had no one so they ended up partners…”

Phew. Kind of. I continued my tirade of not wanting baby girl to be a stepping stone, the picking point, the one who is made to cop the brunt of crap from shitty little kids who don’t know how to raise others and instead try to diminish them, and Hubbie interrupted.

“You are escalating this to something it isn’t. She’s fine.”

“Was she sad?” My eyes nearly welled up.

“Yeah, a bit. But this is school. She has to work it out. This is normal. She’s gonna come across annoying people her whole life.”

True. We ended the phone conversation and the word ‘resilience’ kept rotating in my head. I had read up on it recently, how it was an important skill to nurture in our children. Not necessarily rejecting or unfeeling towards negativity or bad things that might come our way. Rather, to process it and build upon it, grow stronger, wiser, better.

Damn. I mean, he was right. He always was, MOST of the time anyway (shhh). I knew of annoying people in my life… and sure, it’s true. You need to learn how to deal with certain people. Overcome difficult characteristics and points of view. Things that shit you right up the wall. Avoiding it was impossible. It was something that had to be learned and dealt with.

I thought of how sorry I felt for her, and then how Hubbie was ok about it all. Well not ‘OKAY’ okay, but you know, he was realistic.

I thought of my ‘Mama bear’ reaction. My growling tendency to swoop her up under my paw and snarl at anyone who dared look at her the wrong way. My protective nature, my innate maternal instincts to help her and be there for her, no matter what, weather or whereabouts. It was always, intrinsically, THERE.

I thought of Hubbie. His calm and relaxed nature to the way things are. His easy going approach. Sure he would have “grrr”ed had there been reason to… but he held back from the pack and observed with a keen eye, rather than marching straight over to the first available teacher.

And just like that, despite everything in me screaming for baby girl to be OKAY… I let it go.

I accepted things as they were, and accepted that Hubbie was right.

He was a positive influence on me, in not just this situation but many others, where I tended to get over-emotional and dramatise… and I was so grateful for his calming, light and positive way of being, to counter my brooding, protective and negative survival-like response.

The yang, to my yin.

When I got home from work, baby girl would not stop talking. About this, about that, the scrape on her elbow, who she played with at school, the different girl with the pink shoes who went on the monkey bars with her… Hubbie had to ask “baby girl, did you have a coffee?”

“NO!”

And I realised then.

Relax Mama bear.

RESILIENCE. She already has it. I don’t give her enough credit. ♥♥♥

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Photo by Alex on Unsplash

#1005 Grateful for all the shitty things

When death happens in the day, it’s hard to talk about anything else.

Death. Life. Death and Life, Life and Death. Both things trump pretty much everything else, yet we go on about the bullshit of day to day, the annoyances, grievances and grudges we hold like they actually matter.

They don’t. Like I said – Life and Death trumps all.

I heard of a death today. I didn’t even know the boy. Boy. That in itself speaks volumes. Not only was it a death, but a sudden, cruel and early exit.

But you don’t really need to know the person to feel sad, do you? Death in itself is scary and terrifying enough, but when it comes on so suddenly, and takes away someone that still has years and years and years ahead… it becomes so very heartbreaking.

It seems so very unfair.

There are about a million and one ways that we could die. Quite literally. Study biology and you will start to learn all of the diseases and bodily faults that can lead to our early demise. It is actually terrifying.

An accident, or an unlucky brush with the grim reaper, could be waiting for us at ANY TURN. Apart from hoping to God you stay healthy, you should also hope to God you don’t get hit by a car, a bookcase doesn’t fall on you, a tram runs into you, a flesh-eating bug eats away at your limbs and you eventually rot to death, a champagne cork pops in your direction and hits your temple, and, AND…

All the ways we can die are actually mind-numbingly baffling.

And yet, so many of us are LIVING. Day in, and day out.

We are in a sense, the lucky ones. The ones managing to escape death. That we are still alive today, and have managed to avoid disease and misfortune, and all the various ways in which our life could end, well that is a miracle. A true, unimaginable miracle.

We might be left behind, to cry, grieve, suffer as we experience deep loss, and wonder

“what is the point of it all?”

But still: We are the Lucky ones.

So today, on this day where I can’t think of much else but this fact, these are the things I am grateful for:

I am grateful I swept the floors.

I am grateful I mopped the floors.

I am grateful I changed the bed.

I am grateful I cleaned the toilet.

I am grateful that baby girl gave me attitude after kindergarten.

I am grateful we argued and she stormed off, slamming the door on me.

I am grateful, that harsh words were spoken to me.

I am grateful, that I spoke harsh words.

I am grateful, that I shook my head in disbelief.

I am grateful, that I sobbed.

I am grateful, that my heart broke just a little.

I am grateful for ALL of these things, all of these shitty, annoying, boring and fleeting things… because it means I’m ALIVE.

Because it means, I’m one of the LUCKY ONES.

And if you’re reading this, that means you are too.

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Photo by Sydney Sims on Unsplash

#996 Public holiday cleaning

I love this quote:

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I always have, maybe because it speaks to me so personally. I am not saying my house is filth, but I don’t stress out about cleaning. I don’t work out my days according to it. It’s dust here, mop there (now mopping I do get excited about now!) and rather, I fit cleaning in and around my schedule, rather than me fitting my life around cleaning.

I figure, I have better things to do. Things will always get done, and in the end, who the hell cares? Like really, do I primarily want to be known on this earth, for how freaking well my house was cleaned? If people are entering my house and judging the traces of dust present, well I may just have to judge the traces of stupidity in their heads.

Having said all that… I do appreciate, a good, deep clean.

Every so often it happens, and it’s like “get out of my way people! I am on a mission!”

And let’s face it… there’s no greater motivator than knowing there will be 40ish people in your house on the weekend.

:/

And so, on this Melbourne Cup public holiday, I got cracking. Well, we did. After Hubbie got home from work earlier today, we both set to it…

While others were walking through the rain for the horses, still others were on their couches, others at parks, and maybe others more so at the pub, Hubbie was whipper-snippering and then mowing our huge expanse of grass (and you only realise how big it is when you go to tend to it) while I did all manner of jobs inside the house.

We felt accomplished, and good. We still have a long while yet. But I know when we are done I will happily take in ALL the people 🙂