Friday, November 28, 2008

How life changes.

I opened a local newspaper this morning at work during my coffee break, and while looking through the pages came across a brochure for a local business advertising "Last Minute Christmas Ideas".... I looked at it and thought What The????? Last Minute?????? It's not even December yet folks! As far as I'm concerned I haven't even had the First Minute Christmas ANYTHING yet - and last minute is December 24th..... some advertising agents have a lot to answer for if you ask me.

It's been a busy week. It's also been an interesting week. Life is so full of contrast these days. Contrast between what is and what was. Contrast between relationships and days and lives. Contrast is good though. I think it's the one thing that give you perspective on so many things. There were a number of profound moments this week that really struck me. Some of them were old lessons finally learned and some of them were astoundingly bold moments.

I figure I must be a kind of "soft touch" sometimes to get myself into situations where I lead with my heart and not my head. Such a moment occurred over the past couple of weeks where I had obviously allowed myself to get drawn back into the mesmerizing concept of going back on radio. Don't get me wrong - I loved radio. I loved the fun of being on air. I loved those mornings of fun and laughter. I loved the music as well and to a point still miss that side of it. And I think we did it well when we were doing it. But if there is one thing I've learned in life - call it a life rule if you want - but you can't go back. You just can't. And even though for a moment I considered it - just for a moment. Along came a reminder of what happened in the past, a reminder of why I left when and how I did, a reminder of some of the really horrible elements of working in a volunteer organisation - just in time - just at the right time to pull me up by the scruff of the neck and say "What the HELL were you thinking?????"

I see two scenarios of getting involved again. One where you just get hurt and the other where you just get used. Knowing my luck I could end up with both. So I think my best mode is uninvolved..... Given there are "other things" out there right now just itching to upset me - I don't really need that as well.

And then there was the ongoing "battle" with the right to be recognized. And here is another life rule. Pick your battles. Some battles in life are easily fought and won. Some battles take a bit of courage and determination. Some battles are simply never going to be won. But then in contrast - some battles just aren't worth fighting in the first place. Let that be a lesson to you. I realised the one I was starting to be engaged in simply wasn't worth it. I've never really been someone who is overly concerned about what people think of me. I am who and what I am and I can't change that just to suit you or anyone else. So to be troubling myself over what someone else thought of me is simply stupid and to allow how that made me feel affect a relationship so important to me is even more stupid. Thankfully I know we both realise that. So enough is enough. There may be one or two out there who can't see the reality forest, but for me the most important thing is my future with Shane and there isn't anything I would do to jeopardise that. Not a thing.

On the up side though there also were many positive things to come out of the past days. Last week when I knew I had the job I had applied for, I said to Shane I don't know what it is about this job, but even though it's less hours than I need/want I just feel like it's where I'm meant to be at this time. I really love the team I work with. They are a great bunch of people. And I have a feeling that things will work out the way they were meant to just so long as I'm patient. And when I really sit down and look at the job as a big picture - it's exactly what I was looking for with a wage to match.

But two of the most profound moments was this week were at Lakeisha's Year 12 Graduation and earlier in the day. Despite the fact that Shane had had minor surgery on a lump on his foot and was quite obviously in a great deal of pain, he insisted on attending the Graduation. And there was a moment while she was on stage and I looked around at him sitting next to me as he sat there intently watching the proceedings. The overwhelming knowledge of how supportive and loving this man is simply touched my heart. I'm not sure exactly what it was, the look on his face, the knowledge he went to the effort of attending, just the fact that he was there. It was one of those simple things, it created a mental photograph that is safely tucked away in that album in my mind. It will never be scrapbooked - but it will forever remain a special memory.

And earlier in the day when we were heading out to the doctors, and he dressed in his black pants and a white shirt I had bought him from Rivers last weekend. My god the man looked sensational and I seriously couldn't take my eyes off him. And I couldn't help thinking yet again how lucky I am to have this incredible person in my life and about how far both of us have come in the past 14 weeks, not to mention how very proud I am of him.

Life is good.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008


In this day of digital freedom of expression, the whole concept of copyright has become a minefield. Something else for the legal eagles to make a bit of money out of no doubt. But it amuses me when I learn that certain visitors to this blog come to collect the images. While it's one thing for people to drop by to check out what we've been up to - it's a bit pathetic to think there are some who drop by to compensate for a Real relationship. Their loss I guess. While I may write from the heart about our life, I can guarantee the entries are just a tiny glimpse of the people involved and even though it may give some insight into what we get up to from week to week - it's a poor substitute for the real thing.

Booked our tickets to Sydney for the "Stigtacular" event where Grumpo will no doubt WOW the crowds - no matter how large or small. It's probably not the ideal time to be forking out money for such a trip, but then with all the other interesting bits life has been throwing our way recently it's probably not the worst time to be taking a weekend away from reality.

The good news is that I'm now officially employed as a permanent worker so this has to be a good thing. I've really been enjoying the work and the people I work with so it's not only a relief this close to Christmas but also a blessing to have a job I essentially got to try out before I wore it! That said - I guess I should get off here and get ready.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

More photos

3 more photos I picked up today of Lakeisha's School Ball. I know I'm biased - but isn't she stunning?

Life as we know it.

Thought I would share some photos of the more pleasant moments of recent weeks.

One of our regular visitors - every morning - every night. Cheeky little wee thing he is. Brings the whole family along every year for a free feed!

One of the things I like to capture when I photograph things is contrast. How is this for contrast. While standing at the steps of the beautiful Church, the lights turned green and this was the procession that followed....

Now that's what I call contrast! And here are a few other images, special moments and memories captured over the past couple of weeks.

Plus here are a couple of new cards to add to the growing pile. Damn these things are fun!

Monday, November 17, 2008

Is it selfish?

I'm trying to stay calm here and think rationally from the 3rd person. It's not easy. It's always difficult to look at situations in which you are intimately entwined with the rational perspective of an outsider. I try. I do my best to remain unbiased in most situations but I realise I don't always succeed, and I know I can be very protective of the people I love. Right now I'd like to forget all about being unbiased and rational and make a couple of phone calls and tell a few people what I think. The thing that stops me is knowing it wouldn't make any difference at all. It might make me feel better for all of 5 seconds, but that would be about it.

I find it hard enough when people are thoughtless at the best of times, but when it's your own family who treats you with such disrespect and a lack of any thought to your life and your feelings I find it even more difficult to understand. Thankfully it's not my family who fall into the "thoughtless bastard" category this time.

When I think back to when I first met Shane and how he was generally treated by his family, I found it so foreign it was difficult to digest. I don't get how such a caring, loving, intelligent, talented man can be reduced to such a degraded & unimportant level in anyone's life - least of all those who proclaimed to love him. It seemed to me that no one listened to how he was feeling or what he wanted for his life. And when he finally stood up to claim what it was that he did want for his life - everyone was so used to him towing the line I think they just thought the novelty would die off and he would just give in. For my own part in this - I've long ago come to terms with being described as the result of a "mid life crisis", but I will never forget the manner in which this message was delivered.

The saddest part from my perspective is that he deserves so much more than life has given him so far. So to have to sit and listen again to family impose their will, really grates on my nerves and it makes it difficult to hold your tongue. I didn't. And although I know it probably doesn't help resolve the issues - I still believe it's so important to stand up for what you believe in and for what you want for your own life. There are times when I feel voicing my thoughts only confuses the issue even more. But then again when you've spent a lifetime in submission - and finally found the wings to fly - don't you owe yourself the freedom to express what you think and feel.

When you are surrounded by those who insist on looking at a world that constantly owes them something, a world that revolves around them alone - is it not reasonable to point out that there exists other entities who sometimes deserve a thought or an ounce of your time? Do you think it's likely they will listen?

Here's the bottom line..... The world revolves around all who inhabit it. Not you. Not I. But everyone. At some point - your selfishness and self centred outlook of life ceases to go unnoticed. At some point - reality steps in. At some point you stand to lose something that is really important without even noticing it's gone. There's little point in acting surprised after the horse has bolted if you were the one who left the gate open in the first place!

What I don't understand is why I'm so angry. Through all this I have gained the one thing I have searched for all my life. I couldn't be happier. I believe I have won AND earned the most precious gift. I'm grateful for the stupidity that has brought me this wonderful opportunity. And yet make no mistake - I AM angry - angry for the pain it causes and torn between that and the incredible disbelief that some simply cannot see the forest for the trees........

I love you more than words can convey - always remember that. To hell with the bullshit. They didn't deserve you in the first place.

Friday, November 07, 2008

Life Perspective

I often find it interesting to contemplate the way others see life. We all base our perceptions from our own perspective of life but I am often struck by how different those perceptions can be from person to person. How you react to different things can be affected by so many things including your past experiences and what you believe "is". Perspective is an incredible thing. You could go through many years of believing something just "is" - and all of a sudden out of the blue something comes along to contradict that belief. You can fight it. But eventually you have to accept that whatever it was just simply isn't ALWAYS the way you perceived it to be.

It can be an unnerving experience, as many new things can be. New ways of thinking are difficult for some. Accepting the reality of difference and change, for others, seems to be impossible. I admire the people who have the courage to analyse and accept the concept that everything isn't ALWAYS as it seems to be, and that sometimes you have to change your beliefs or at the very least adjust them, rather than block out the reality and continue to live in a fantasy, no matter how comfortable that fantasy might be.

For me, it's sad to think so many people live in the past or in a state of illusion. I don't understand why we sometimes hold on to things that are bad or sad or unhappy. I wonder why we sometimes make the decisions we know will not be the best thing for ourselves, why we put ourselves last, why we give so much to a partner or friend who simply isn't giving anything back to us. I'm sure we know it. I'm sure there are those moments of the uncertainty of thinking at night when the reality and the pain cut deeply. But then we rise each morning, put on our robe of responsibility and step out into the world pretending everything is fine. Why do we do that?

We as human beings are ever changing, ever evolving. One of the biggest things about life I think I've learned, and hope I practice to the best of my ability, is growing with it rather than fighting against it. Having the ability to adapt and grow, and probably more importantly embracing it, is without doubt one of the most valuable lessons I have gained in recent times along with the importance of communication - real, honest communication. Since I discovered that for myself, I have never been happier. And having the perspective I now have on how good life, love and relationships can be, makes the past a little sadder but the future much brighter.

Despite being in the midst of year 12 exams, our home has been delightfully calm. I give much of that credit to the wonderful man who enriches our lives with stability, support, humour and love now. I had feared it might be a terribly stressful time but it seems to have been far less eventful than anticipated. One exam to go and it's all over. Of course the reality of life having changed now forever is starting to sink in - for both of us. And while a part of me is excited for her future and the prospects that await her, that motherly part of me is extremely anxious about the very same things. I am very proud of the young woman she has become and of the bond we share. It's been so much "she and I" in our world over the past 17 years that it's going to be very strange indeed when she heads off to create her own life.

I think my scrapbooking has always been a very important part of recent years and I have no doubt it will continue to be that way. But I've really enjoyed the foray into making cards as well. Despite Christmas being just around the corner and still needing a few more to match the long list of recipients, I've had a bit of fun branching out to Birthday greetings as well. Not to mention having taken a bunch of cards to show a lovely lady who owns a gift shop who was so taken with them would not only like a selection to sell in her shop but has also ordered a special one for her Brother's upcoming Birthday. So one of my cards will soon be winging it's way to the USA to hopefully put a smile on someones face. I like that concept. So for now - here are some Birthday creations I played around with last week.