#552 The facial

I can easily refer to it as ‘the,’ rather than ‘a’ facial, since the duration between facials has been so long, I almost forgot WHAT IT WAS.

I think I had a series of treatments before I got married, you know, to get my face all ‘getting married ready.’

That was over 8 years ago.

I received a voucher for a beauty salon from my beautiful cousins a year ago for my birthday, and today I was finally able to redeem it, one day before it expired.

Actually, the fact that the salon is not even open tomorrow, means I actually got in at the last day.

There are so many excuses as to why it took me so long to get there, and furthermore, why I don’t do facials anymore: lack of time, attention elsewhere (more ‘important’ things), Motherhood, WIFE-hood, both a.k.a putting myself last, and the worst of it all, the guilt that I should be doing more worthy things, rather than splurging on myself.

All a bunch of bull.

As I lay there in the darkened room, moisturiser getting lathered and massaged into my face and neck and shoulders, I vowed to myself I had to do this more often. I had to put myself first, look after my own body and mind and wellbeing, and then when I did, I would come back to my family all –

Rejuvenated. Fresh. Alive. Ready to take on the world. And with a restored sense of calm.

And isn’t that the best way to be with your family? The best person you can be? I, and YOU, owe it not just to yourself, but to them.

So honestly, I need to get a facial every couple of months, for them. Good point, good point… ūüėČ

#548 Returning to Island time

I wrote a post very early this year about a photo I took while on holiday with Hubbie at Phillip Island, many many many years ago.

Not only did this photo stay with me due to it being taken at a highly creative and deeply personal awakening time for me, but its strong and subtle message of taking it easy while being on an island, sang an especially sweet song. It spoke of not just relaxing into the moment, but allowing all worries and stresses to melt away as you succumbed to the slow-down pace of a more mindful part of the world.

Well today after about 5 years, we were back at Phillip Island.

Then it had been a still and sunny, though cloudy January day.

Today it had been a grey, incessantly rainy, and hair-flailing windy August day.

Then there had been an abundance of tourists everywhere lapping up the scenery.

Today there had been few overseas people about, the streets mostly empty and quiet.

Then the shops and cafes had been bursting with livelihood and excitement amongst the best time of the year.

Today there were more shops blackened and closed, than were open.

Then I had taken my sweet time to take the best shot possible of my favourite pic, angling the camera just the right way to get the best light, while using the poster’s message to take it slow and take it in, in my task.

Today I had forgotten about the poster on the passing building until we were nearly past it, and I made Hubbie slow down in the middle of the round-a-bout while I made a mad scramble for my phone and took a hasty shot of it again.

IMAG5454

I didn’t even get ALL the words in.

And yet I didn’t care. The people, conditions and comparison didn’t matter to me: all that was important was that the poster, the message was still there. And as long as that poster was in that same spot, that meant it was always going to be island time.

And it forever will be, rain, hail or shine.

(The background tree photo on my SmikG blog is of the Phillip Island iconic trees on the main strip, an ode to the time when an especially important story and group of characters came to life in my head…

#403 Lengthened Night

It was already so much darker between the hour of 6:30 to 7 this evening.

That’s because this was our first night of non-Daylight Savings Time, after our clocks moved back¬†one hour very early¬†this morning.

I have written about this before. And so it surprised me that yet again, I gladly welcomed the end of Daylight Savings for another year.

This time last year, “I almost welcomed it”… those were my words. And obviously, I was grateful, grateful for the opportunity to hibernate like a bear and do nothing but sleep, eat, and write.

But this year, I wholeheartedly and vigorously embrace the darkness.

And it’s simply to do with the fact that I just need a break. I just need to slow down. I want to turn our attentions inward, literally, into our house, and chill, and think, and re-design when we can, and enjoy our family time together.

Not necessarily at the beach… but we can still have fun looking at the beach, and waving to pretend pirates on ships far, far away on the horizon.

That’ll do just fine. Now, excuse me as I go to bed.

#379 She is growing up

While she was at kinder today, I went through some more boxes. I took out her toddler-sized kitchen plastic play set that has been tucked away since we packed it up, 5 months ago when we moved here.

I know she’d forgotten about it. When I lead her to the play area, and turned her around, she didn’t scream with excitement. Or clap excitedly. Her realisation was more of an increased dawning, so pleased but madly curious about all the odds and ends and rediscovery, that her outward excitement just had to wait. She had to explore, immediately.

I watched her move about ‘her kitchen.’ She turned nobs and dials like a master. She walked behind the ‘sink’ got a ‘pot,’ and with a ‘ladle’ started to spoon out some ‘soup’ into a ‘cup.’

Scoop, scoop, scoop she went. So expertly. She tipped it into the cup and handed it to me, telling me it was a bit hot. It took me hours to realise why she kept repeating this every¬†time she handed me or Hubbie something to ‘eat’ tonight: I am constantly saying “Ouch!¬†Hot!” every time she points at a pan or pot while I am cooking.

She is imitating me ūüôā

She used to get frustrated with her kitchen play set, and¬†start to throw things around: a plate here, a plastic fridge door there. She’d chew on the green knives and spoons, so much so that many have her teeth marks on them.

Now she moves about so comfortably. She packs her ‘cake,’ a ‘teapot’ and a cup, carefully into the fridge/pantry component of her kitchen. She adjusts them carefully, and then closes the door.

She is 3 and a half. Her maturity stuns me.

Later she sits with an activity book she is becoming re-acquainted with, after it was discovered after more of my earlier unpacking. It’s one of those ones where you add water to the thick cardboard paper, and watch it transform into colour as it hits the surface. She sits on the floor with a bowl of water next to her, diligently getting to work as she dips her finger in the bowl, and then moves it over the page, bringing the Finding Dory illustration to life.

She sits like that, for a while. Here was a girl who could barely stay focused on any one task for 5 minutes. And yet she does page after page, showing me her artwork in between, proudly smiling as I exclaim “did you do that?!”

A lot of it is kindergarten. Much of it is age too. And time must also play a factor. But I am flabbergasted, truly lost for words at the developmental progress, and the maturity that baby girl is displaying. Sure, she is still her cheeky self. Sure, there are times she will try to get away with more than she should. Sure, she still knows how to get a rise out of us.

But I can just see the difference. See this observational, particular, independent, creative and go-getting girl, developing.

And I couldn’t be prouder.

And sure, parenting is hard. Really, really hard at times.

But then it is amazing. Joyful. Unbelievably rewarding. It can have you feeling higher than a kite, falling to your knees in blessed wonder, and shedding tears of happiness and hilarity at once.

It is the best thing, EVER. And it’s because it is LOVE, manifested.

I love that description.

A child is LOVE, manifest. And watching that LOVE grow and develop into something beyond your wildest dreams…

Words cannot describe. Although I have done my best to. I will now stop.

Grateful, is an understatement of the highest magnitude.

 

#347 How we make up

I thoroughly enjoy the dynamic relationship I share with Hubbie. I thrive on it. It excites me, and keeps me on my toes. We are different, but essentially, at our core, the same.

We are exceptionally loyal to one another. We are passionate in our diverse and pursued interests, and encourage each other to strive for greater heights.

We love spending time together. Time, never seems to be enough. We can be with each other for days on end, and still find ourselves walking through the house, looking for the other when they’ve been absent for 15 minutes.

Also, we are especially honest with each other. Often, brutally so.

We can argue, REALLY well.

Like most couples I guess. On the surface we seem really easy going and happy. And, that is true. One of our closest friends think that we must never fight.

Oh dear. How wrong, wrong, wrong they are.

We pull each other up when the other is misbehaving – constantly.

We tell each other off when we feel disappointed by the other.

We freely tell the other to ‘snap out of it’ ‘move on’ and ‘don’t be so sensitive’ when there’s too much whining going on.

Most of the time we get on with one another, really well. But sometimes, occasionally, infrequently but still big enough to make a momentous dent on our memory bank, we have a decent fight.

Like last night.

After being cranky and shitty with each other most of the night, butting heads and just being in completely different zones to the other, I headed upstairs to bed, after I put baby girl to bed and wrote my gratitude post (yes I am bipolar and can be in an appreciative yet simultaneously horrid state of mind) with one thing in mind:

TO LET HIM HAVE IT.

I woke him up, and even that was enough to make him shitty. Rightly so. For the next hour we proceeded to aggressively, emotionally and yet somehow almost rationally break down why we were upset with each other, who had done what wrong, and what could be done to fix it.

Well, nothing could. It was 2am by the time we were done. And like I said, we were in two different states of mind. I am always the one needing to discuss it NOW, whereas he always needs to sleep on it. That in itself creates a mountain of problems, making any arguments we have at the end of the day that much worse. We had talked it out, but still lay down facing away from each other. I closed my eyes, my cheeks wet.

What I also love about us, is our constant and everlasting willingness to make up. To see it through, talk it out, and make amends to move on, happy again.

I woke up cranky and flat. He had gotten up earlier and gone for a long walk along the beach¬†to clear his head. He came back, bright and chirpy. I was still –

Grrr, argh.

When¬†I’d finished the usual¬†morning routine with baby girl, he pulled me up and said “Let’s sit down, say what we have to say, and move on so we can enjoy the rest of our day.”

Ahhh. Exhale. I love this part.

And so we did. We talked, and talked, and by the end of it, were both relieved.

Why?

Because we do ‘content’ much more easily and willingly and happily, than we do angry.

All is good again in the world. ūüôā

Having a partner that is as willing as you are to compromise, find resolve, and get back to that happy state, is about as important as any other thing in a relationship I think.

I think that’s definitely the advice I would give baby girl when she is older.

“Find someone, who would rather have peace, than be right.”

#339 The cousins over

Hubbie and I went to a bit of effort tonight. And really, I don’t even like to make a big deal about it, I only mention it for the sake of explaining it for this post. We did it though, because we wanted to.

Family is important to me. Family is important to both of us. And as much as I love my cousins and I know they love me, and our respect and appreciation for each other is mutual, I am content in the knowledge that my Hubbie, also, LOVES my cousins.

And they, wholeheartedly, LOVE him.

Quite a few of them came over tonight to see our new digs. It was a busy night, and I had many “you didn’t have to go to this much trouble” comments.

I know I didn’t have to. But I wanted to. I don’t do that shit for anyone. When I want to do something, I do it.

And when I won’t can’t, I call up the local pizza joint.

Along with my sis and her fam, we all had a smashing time, I’m sure of that. There was serious convo, light topics, laughter, dancing, singing, and eating and drinking a plenty.

I’m blessed to have such wonderful and loving family,¬†and I’m¬†also¬†glad that they wanted to spend their Saturday night at our house.

Time is precious for EVERYONE. Watch for who willingly calls you up and asks to come over.

The action itself, speaks volumes.

#294 The ‘we’ve done good’ moment

I have these revelations while driving in my car. Maybe because it’s usually quiet and I’m alone with nothing but my thoughts. And when you’re driving home and the path is familiar, you tend to focus less on your surroundings, and more with what is occupying your mind.

‘And when you’re driving home…’ yep, we’re home alright.

That was where my thoughts led me today. I was trying to rush home from work, and was close by, thinking of how Hubbie and Baby girl were waiting for me, ready to jump into the car and off we would go to do some very late, very brief afternoon shopping. Better something than nothing before Christmas.

I noticed around me the bushy landscape, the golden fields stretching out beyond them, and the hilly road I was on… and despite the rushed state I was in, I thought ‘yep. We did good.’

We’ve done good. I don’t care that it takes me longer to drive to and from work. I don’t care that I spend more money on petrol. I don’t care that I need to leave earlier to get to places on time.

I don’t even care that we still haven’t started properly renovating. I don’t care that it’ll probably take another 5-10 years ’til everything we want is complete to our standards. I don’t even care, that this house, is older than our last.

I don’t care about any of these things. Sure, I want them, and I would like to improve on them… but they’re not that important.

They’re not important, because we are where we wanna be. We’re home.

Everything else will get looked after in due time.

And that was my happy realisation today.