#1862 The gratitude T

Today I tried out my new top.

I have to say… it suits me to a T.

(Tee hee hee).

To say that this top was meant for me, given my blog topics… well I couldn’t have picked a better one if I had gone out shopping with purpose.

But no. Like with all things, I just stumbled upon it.

And it is perfect. 💖💖

#1813 I get knocked down…

But I get up again.

So close, so so soooo close to throwing in the towel for this gratitude blog.

You know I’ve never said it out loud, but I’ve seriously considered finishing this blog at number #2000.

I figure if I’ve managed to be grateful for at least one thing for all of those days, then I have the tools necessary to help me through life when times get hard.

Also, it’s a nice even number, and I have plenty of other writing projects to keep me busy anyway.

#2000. That’s only 187 days away. Sometime this year in fact.

But after the day I’ve had, I honestly am questioning if I’ve learnt anything at all.

Because I’m finding it very hard to be grateful.

I get knocked down,

But I get up again

You’re never gonna keep me down

Am I being too hard on myself? I mean, when you go through bad times, or nightmares keep repeatedly coming back to haunt you, how are you meant to act? With a laugh? A yippee? A friendly ‘oh darn, not this again’ with a Joker-like smile?

Nope.

When you’ve had the same freaking thing, annoying you, bugging you, and no one can tell you why, or explain it, and you’re going around and around in circles, and you’re even considering psychics for answers because seriously NO ONE ELSE KNOWS, and then it strikes again…

AHHH!

I get knocked down,

But I get up again

You’re never gonna keep me down.

Seriously. How am I meant to act?

Anyway, This is my bitch-fest. My whinge to the world. Take it as you will, because it may not last for long…

So, what am I even grateful for?

I get knocked down,

But I get up again…

For now.

#1694 Day 196 of getting there: trying to get there

I am going to be brutally honest with you.

Not that I’m usually dishonest. But doing this gratitude blog, means I focus in on some positive moment, event, thing, person, expression, and amplify it.

So often in our lives, we focus on that which doesn’t work. That which doesn’t go to plan, or that which makes our hearts sad.

That’s why I do this blog. To prove, that no matter what, you can find something good in every day.

I have had so many bad days. More than you will care to realise. And each time, I chug on, write another gratitude post, think of that one thing amidst many shit things that is worth focusing in on.

But I am really truly struggling as of late.

My health has been hit with some setbacks. When you fall ill, without any understanding of why it’s happening, and it comes back again, and again, and again…

You really start to doubt things in your life. You start to fear. Anxiety grows, slowly at first, but then like a garden you tend to, if you neglect it for only a few days, the weeds spread out and cover your every thought.

This has been my life. This has been me. Health issues, as well as other serious thoughts, and isolation, are all colliding together spectacularly.

I clutch onto good things in my day, like a cat with its claws dug into a piece of driftboard, as it sails further and further away into murky and stormy seas.

It is hard to avoid the deep, dark seas.

I am becoming devoid of passion. I have no motivation for things that used to bring me happiness. I am not looking forward, to anything… even my appetite has taken a hit.

I used to look forward to baking new things, finding new recipes… I can’t be bothered anymore.

I used to count all the opportunities during the week in which I could write in all my side projects… I can’t. I feel fake.

I would love sitting on the couch at the end of the night, doing whatever I liked, for me, while the rest of the house slept.

Now it just makes me feel more alone and scared than ever.

Fear and anxiety is the main presence in my life. I can’t trust anything… I am scared of what’s around the corner.

I just want my life to go back to how it used to be. But it feels so far away. Isolation, the absence of seeing my family, my friends, is making it so hard.

Being stuck in the square box we called home, the anxious thoughts circling around my head, following me from room to room, are not helping.

I’m honestly going mad.

And although on a good day, I would be overjoyed and proud to share something like this…

All three of the tulips blooming.

Today? Nothing. A mere distraction, that I’m trying so desperately to clutch onto.

I try to snap other things, other flowers, trying to remember how they will look like this season, based off previous years growth…

But not even curiosity can save me.

So I turn to you, anyone reading, to ask for help.

Having poured my heart out to you, I ask, I beg…

If you were ever in a moment, or a spate of days/weeks/months, of intense and extreme fear and anxiety, where the emotions took over all your senses and clouded all movements you made throughout your day, what did you do to help yourself?

Is there anything you did to help yourself? What helped? What could you have done better, looking back?

I really need some guidance here.

Thank you. 🙏

#1557 Day 59 of getting there: a day for my book

I go from one hat, to another hat, to another hat.

ALL DAY LONG.

Work hat. Mum hat. Teacher hat. Cleaner hat. Chef hat. Pet owner hat. Wife hat. Washing hat. (Did I say cleaner hat?)

Emotional hat. Maintenance hat. Finance hat.

Where is my ‘me’ hat?

Sure we are in lockdown, but all it means for me is I’m doing everything from home now, instead of leaving the house for things that I used to.

It’s now the work and the home schooling, as well as trying to do all of the normal everyday tasks that keep the house running,

I jump from one thing to another thing to another thing, all without taking a breath.

Overwhelmed is an emotion I am all too familiar with.

I asked myself the other night “where is my ‘me time'”?

Sure, I do this at night. Everyone goes to sleep. I blog, I journal.

Other times I am so spent I watch my guilty pleasure Bold and the Beautiful on repeat, or just scroll aimlessly through social media.

But then, that other big question… the question that I’m sure A LOT of us has thought at one point or another during this lockdown…

What is it for?

What is the point? Where am I placing my valuable time, and is it leading me in the direction I want to go?

Or have I fallen into routine, and need to be reminded of that which makes my heart sing?

What about my book?

Yeah, MY BOOK. That thing I was working on ’til early this year, which I then left because ‘feedback overload!’ All well and good, but with so long a break, it was time to ask the question again.

‘What about my book?’

A new plan. A new decision. A new routine.

A new hat. A writing hat. 🙂

Wednesdays was now going to be my BOOK day.

It doesn’t matter how much (or how little) I spend working on my novel… but from now on, I’m going to be announcing to the house my intentions, and ordering them all to leave me alone for as long as they can muster!

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Today it was about 80 minutes… not bad. It was baby steps. I first had to remind myself of where I was at, re-reading feedback from writing pals, and taking notes to ‘up the ante’ of my story.

Even if I do one line, each Wednesday…

I am doing something. I need to be easy on myself. I know how I work.

Life can get away from us. But if I can try stick to this new routine, all my Wednesdays will surely amount to something.

They will amount to much more, than doing nothing.

#1528 Day 30 of getting there: 90 minutes

Since all this CV started, my life has been about a few things, and these things SOLELY.

Work.

Homeschool.

Play with dolls in baby girl’s my free time.

That’s it.

Oh no, I lie. There is the cooking, the cleaning, the never-ending washing…

Yeah. Plenty of time for me in those chores. Sigh.

Sure there are benefits to working at home. No traffic. Save money on travel. Eat and drink at home.

Roll out of your bed and wear your trakkies to the desk in the morning.

But just as I am working from home, so too is baby girl schooling from home.

That means that any normal free time I might have had for my writing and personal development during non-work time when she would usually be at school, well it’s now GONE.

Any time I’ve had free… wash the dishes.

“Mum, can you play with my dolls?”

Washing.

What to cook.

“Did you finish that task?”

It’s never-ending.

So today, after finishing work, and then doing the homeschooling thing, a few more odd jobs, and YES, playing with the bloody barbie dolls…

I said to baby girl “now it’s Mummy’s time.”

Now this doesn’t always work. But I try anyway. So many times I’ve proclaimed it’s me time, only to be whinged at, nagged, prodded and pushed, and that’s not even from baby girl. 😉

So to be able to sit on the couch with laptop in the fading sunlight, and write, write and write away… for 90 minutes.

90 MINUTES!

Yep.

Well, it felt incredible.

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I was working on a future post… stay tuned for that.

But I felt so light, so free afterwards. So amazing. And I realised, this is the feeling.

This is how you feel, when you know you are doing what you are meant to do.

When you know you are doing your soul’s work.

♥

#1494 Finding the good in a new kind of normal

I remember a line I read in a pregnancy book, a few days after coming home with a very newborn baby girl.

I was in a state of panic and fear and frustration, and this book said something along the lines of:

“Lower your expectations.

And lower…

And lower…

Even lower…

There you go.”

Essentially what I was being told was to not expect much AT ALL. It was a new, confusing and confronting time of our life, becoming new parents and learning how to raise a small human, and the expectations of anything else that life would bring, including this little being herself, was lower than NIL.

It was the only functional place to operate from. Expecting anything higher, would result in severe disappointment, and as a new Mum that is a dangerous place.

I can’t help thinking of that time again today.

Because today, with the PM announcing approximately 6 months of living in self-isolation, avoiding gatherings, unnecessary social occasions, events and the like, well it all feels very sad.

Very lonely.

We need to lower our expectations to a new kind of normal.

And with that, I realise that by lowering my standards of what I expect life to be and look like, I will essentially be raising the bar for this blog.

Because I will be looking for even more simple and inventive ways to be grateful… all without my little every day luxuries.

My catch ups with friends.

Getting my hair done.

Going to the park.

Going to the movies.

Grabbing a coffee at the local café.

Eating out on a Saturday night.

Discovering a new place.

All of this will be, if predictions forecast accurately, put on hold. And sure, 6 months is hopefully the maximum time this will be imposed on us.

Even more hopefully, this will all end WAY BEFORE the 6 months are up.

But in the meantime… lower your expectations.

I’m already thinking of writing. So much writing. And reading SO SO much.

Home improvements.

Movie nights in.

Long D&Ms on the phone.

Running around the yard.

And one that Hubbie and I thought of tonight… talking to our people, via webcam, and skype!

Imagine the full blown catch-ups we can have if we link it up to a computer and cheers! the night away!

We might all end up creating a new and simple way to live our lives, away from the hype, the hoo-ha, the busy busy busy, and the chaos.

Maybe this is happening for a reason.

#1463 So close to royalty at the firies concert

I wish we were in Sydney tonight in the crowd of thousands, watching artist after group after band perform on stage to raise money for the bushfire catastrophe that has gripped Australia and the rest of the world over the last couple of months.

Did I say artists? I meant legends.

We only caught the last couple of hours of the show on tv, but were there in time to watch Adam Lambert and Queen take to the stage.

Anyone following my blogs knows what I think about Queen.

😍🤩

It was truly something special. My thoughts kept going from “how amazing is Adam Lambert” to –

“How can he stand up to Freddie Mercury?”

“Of course he can’t, he’s his own person.”

“But Freddie was the best.”

“But look how far Adam has come to be performing with Queen!”

To and fro, my thoughts, and my words to Hubbie next to me on the couch.

Then they put Freddie on screen doing his legendary operatic solo bit where the crowd copies him, and seeing him lighting up the darkness of the arena with his yellow outfit, so large and life-like, I swear it was like he was there.

😪

But then baby girl came into the room, and I was a little on edge.

As way of explanation… we haven’t quite spoken about death with her. She knows that if you do something stupid (like run out onto a busy road, get caught in a fire, or don’t put sunscreen on) you can die.

Things like that I bluntly drill into her. Shock effect to make her listen.

But real-life death, death of those around us? As far as she gets it from what I can tell, there are people ‘here’ on earth, and then there are people who are not… the in-between from here to there I think she doesn’t comprehend, and as for ‘there,’ the concept is all a bit cartoon-like for her, like Ursula the sea witch being stabbed to death in The Little Mermaid, or Mother Gothel falling out the tower in Rapunzel.

It’s all a bit exaggerated and other-worldly.

Add to that my first experience understanding death when I was about her age… and the thought of making her as sad and scared as I had been, was devastating to even consider.

So when this rock star princess of ours entered the room to “We Will Rock You,” took one look at Adam and asked “where’s Freddie?” I knew it was the perfect opportunity to break into a discussiom about death with her, and it might even just work, because Freddie, wasn’t part of our extended family.

But then again… with the amount we played Queen around the house, he might as well have had his own bedroom downstairs.

“He’s not here tonight honey…” I shot a confused look at Hubbie, who just shrugged. He’d previously said that talking about the death of a celebrity was the perfect segue into real-life.

But now he was looking as reluctant as I was.

“… he’s not singing anymore,” I ended. I waited for her to ask, but the question didn’t come. She stared at the screen for a few moments, before turning to our cat on the couch.

“Mister F, who do you like better? Freddie Mercury or this guy?”

OH LOL.

“Mama, who do you like better, Freddie Mercury or this guy?”

“Freddie.”

Off she went to the other room to ask Hubbie who had just walked off, and I heard his answer as short, simple and brief as mine: “Freddie.”

“Baby girl, who do you prefer?” I asked as she came back in.

“Freddie Mercury!”

He almost is like a part of our family…. so that conversation will have to wait, for another day.

But for tonight at least… Adam and Queen brought him back to life.

You can still donate to the bushfire relief here: https://firefightaustralia.com/

Thank you. ❤

#1456 Pieces of straw

It crossed my mind today that maybe I should give this whole gratitude blog thing a rest.

It was just one of those days, where everything bothered me.

But somewhere in the afternoon I found some things to grasp onto, and keep me going.

A great cappuccino made by Hubbie.

Chocolate. Many pieces.

And then one of my fave movies. I put on –

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God bless art. ALL FORMS. Within minutes I was laughing as Meryl Streep’s character Julia Child was going ga-ga over buttered fish in a French restaurant.

It is an amazing movie, and Streep’s performance is phenomenal.

I think I gravitated towards this movie, and it’s the kind that always picks me up, because it shows the two stories of women who were in a slump in their life, struggling to find a place to belong, went through much difficulty and hardships to get what they wanted, but in the end…

THEY GOT THERE. THEY GOT IT.

I really needed this movie today. I cried with happiness just as much as I did with emotion.

It was the needle that helped me get out of the stack. ♥

#1306 My Writing Zone

I find myself there often at the moment.

In the zone. The writing zone.

With so much of life’s busy-ness out of the way (a misnomer for sure, as life is always busy, I just feel like a lot of stuff that was holding me up has moved away for the time being) I am dedicating more and more of my time to writing.

Novel writing. Journal writing. Course writing. Blog writing.

Writing writing writing.

I am trying to keep myself focused. Hubbie brought it to my attention a couple weeks ago that I tend to get restless and move away from that which I have set my sights on… instead of staying with it and being patient, no matter what IT is, I tend to get side-tracked and start looking at other things to do, other things to busy myself.

I am trying to look at the bigger picture. The bigger novel picture.

I am enjoying my days. Sure a portion of it is spent in front of my computer. Sure I make myself sit and write and edit and learn, even if it’s sunny out and it hasn’t been that way for so long (I make up my inside time by going out later and doing something like, I don’t know, weeding?). 😉

Even when I step away from the story, it is in my head. I am going through it, dissecting this, dissecting that. Getting ideas for other novels, and so on. My creative juices and excitement for it are at an all-time high, and I am loving it.

I AM LOVING IT.

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Photo by Green Chameleon on Unsplash

 

#1200 5 years

1200 posts of gratitude, a crap load on my parent blog SmikG, and it all started when… ?

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YAY! This blogging journey on WordPress started 5 years ago, and all after I read a book…

How wonderful these pages bound together in a unified spine can be 🙂