Friday, 19 July 2013

Bye bye boy

The preceding days did not pan out for me as I had hoped. My bed remains empty, my desire unfulfilled. We didn't cross that line, ultimately I don't think he wanted to, he was just careless with his words, flirtatious in his ways. I sensed my want for him became heavy, demanding, not the mindless fling his body was seeking. I tried not to be that way, but I suppose my craving for passion overtook the reality of the situation. So needy and greedy, wanted to swallow him whole, yet hated the thought of him not being free. He hurt my pride, I thought it was just me, unique me, that he wanted, but I've learned this wasn't the case, and I learned it the hard way, like a stinging slap across the face. His farewell drinks and dinner, I ended up not being seated near him, but across from a sweet young man, and we got talking, and talking and shared our food. I could see my beloved bespectacled boy flirting with a girl, not from our work, and much closer to his age, but secretly I still hoped I'd find my way to him later in the evening. At the end of the meal, he came around, organising the payment of the bill. The young man I'd shared food with, commented to him that we'd had something of a dinner date. My colleague, drunk by this stage, said something along the lines of 'she is mine'. No, that's exactly what he said. She is mine. Proprietary. Perhaps in jest, but I heard the underlying warning. I didn't look to see his face, or at least I can't remember it now, I remember I laughed and rolled my eyes, but I felt something very primal respond in me at his words. Yes, I am yours. 

But he did nothing further that night to claim me. In fact he seemed to divert his attentions back to the other girl, and after a time I couldn't take it anymore so I left after a cool farewell, a nothing hug, an embrace that would have been warmer between strangers. And that's the end of that story, I'm relieved in some ways to see the back of him, my feelings had escalated and intensified so much in these last days with him, and it was becoming too intense. Having him disappoint me, show me his true colours, his carelessness, his lack of desire toward me when compared to my own, makes it easier to not look back, not dwell, soak, parade the memories around and around in my mind. I don't want to feel bitter, he is just so young after all, I can't expect him to have the intuition and nurturing care that I have, to know how to let me down gently, or to even have the insight that I might need to be treated with care, my vulnerable heart. 

So goodbye to you forever. It turns out I loved you. Yes. I am yours. But I will never ever ask you to be mine. 

Tuesday, 9 July 2013

Intoxication

What a deliciously intoxicating day. 

The anticipation, the waiting and wanting. The breaking of rules, work place relationships, age difference relationships. Quivering all day long across from him exchanging flirtatious messages while the busy work of our colleagues swirls around us. I did my work, as best I could, while in flames, my mind gone, body controlled by my desire. 

Of course I worry still a little bit that there may be regrets, ramifications, aren't we taught that bad things happen when we give into our most primal needs. But this could be it, my last shot at passion, I could find out in a month, a year that I have cancer or some such modern day disease, and will have wasted this precious time on fear of retribution. My sexual drive will begin to decline, as I'm told it does with age, and these heights, like I experienced today, by his knowledge of my secret desire for him, will be forever out of reach. 

Monday, 8 July 2013

Some kind of farewell

It's hard on me, uncertainty, about the extent of another's feelings. I've written, many times before, about my younger male work colleague who has the ability to induce a significant desire within me. It waxes and wanes, but it's never really that far from the surface. Being the adventurous boy that he is, he has taken an internal transfer overseas, to the Middle East. Of course I understand that drive, remembering what it is like to be young and seek adventures. It is one thing I would like to have done, would still like to do, spend a year or two, living and working in a completely different environment and culture. So off he flys, in just three weeks time, possibly never to be seen again by this saddened heart. We went out as a group on Friday and we all drank a little much, and we were talking and he suggested to me that we should have a sexual relationship before he goes. Our very own office romance. I said that I would like that. But he said that I should think it over. Then others came along and we talked about it no more. Shortly after, a friend of his arrived, a girl, who sort of commandeered his attention for the rest of the night. I felt some jealousy but I hid it well, I feel I have a strong jealous streak sometimes, something I should work on. I texted him the next day, short but overtly sexual which he responded to quite nicely. I feel confused about how to progress. I'm worried he doesn't share the depth of emotion I feel, and is perhaps just looking for the stereotypical older woman sexual experience, and I feel pressure from that as well. I worry that he was just intoxicated and wasn't thinking of what he was saying, that it was just flippant. And he hasn't thought much of it since then, whereas it's all I can think of.  I could scarcely look at him today, let alone concentrate on my work with him just a few metres away, knowing that I want him. I'm worried about showing him my  older body with its marks of childbirth, and age. I'm worried about putting pressure on him by trying to instigate a conversation about this, in case he's hoping to just let it slide. I feel incredibly insecure about my position here. Does he want a guilt free uninhibited sexual experience, or a deeper connection, which is something he seems to seek from me, but through conversation only, so far. Am I alone in being asked to be his lover in this short time he has left. And then I think why am I giving away all my power, giving in to my insecurities. Why wouldn't he want to make love to me, now that this is potentially our only chance in life to be with one another. Our final goodbye. He will be gone for two years, both of us will have moved on by then to more appropriate partners and if there is a passion between now, in time, it will be lost. I don't want to let this moment pass. I might not feel this way about a man for a long time to come. It might be awful, uncomfortable, we might jeopardize our friendship, but it will surely dissipate in time, as right now we are thrown together by circumstance. I hope that these weeks won't pass without me knowing what it's like to have him, completely and utterly. A tragedy it would be to let him go because I'm afraid of his rejection, afraid I care more, afraid of some sadness when he leaves, afraid of ruining this last of our time together because of these fears when I could just be brave and open and loving and show him my heart and my passion and that experiencing such openness would just be enough. Why can't I just enjoy this, without all this associated emotional attachment, it isn't the way to love. I want to write to him and tell him everything but I also I don't want him to be forced to have difficult conversations when time is precious now for him, his time with friends and family. So I will wait and see, try to be open, not insecure, and hope he finds his way into my arms so I can love him properly, even just for just one night. 

Friday, 28 June 2013

Vandalism

Each morning I park my car 1.5km away from work, it's in an area where you can park all day for free, rather than pay ten dollars per day to park, closer to work. Money is tight, so I figured it was worth it, adding a few extra steps into my day, and saving myself ten bucks. On Wednesday I returned to my car to find it had been vandalized. My mirrors smashed, the rear light smashed and a screw driver or key had been run across 4 or 5 panels of the car. Hundreds of dollars worth of damage, done deliberately, for no apparent reason to my car. Yes, I am insured, but my excess is $600, far more money than I can spare right now. I have to admit I have overspent lately, the two trips for the half marathons were costly, although I will never regret them, pretty life changing they were. But I was upset by this act, I feel like I am working so hard, trying so hard, and taking a few unfair kicks in the guts. I suppose we all have to face life's unfairness sometimes, but this one hurt. My friend at work tried to tell me not to look for deeper meaning in the act, that it's not a higher message from the universe, but I guess I just for a moment felt that this was the straw that broke the camel's back. I was teary, felt cheated, ready to throw in the towel, and even angry. Often in these situations I find compassion and can justify actions like this by imagining that the person who did this was some poor lost soul. Still, it was pretty malicious. They rammed a screw driver into both my mirrors, take this you naive, broke, exhausted, stressed, single mother. I suppose I felt like I was being kicked while I was down. And I was scrambling to get up again. I feel better now, I am on holidays for a week with my boys. Not going anywhere, just a week of relaxing at home, being unhurried. I've been overwhelmed these last few weeks by my busy schedule, struggling to get out of bed each morning, but already I feel better. We made home made pizzas and chocolate pudding last night, squeezed some fresh orange juice this morning. Slow simple enjoyable tasks. A step back from the pressure of my deadline driven job, which I enjoy, but means I'm often working in a fairly adrenaline heightened state. So I'm going to go slow for a week, remove all pressures, get my car fixed, and perhaps I should do a budget. But I guess it's a reminder that not everyone is as lucky as me, and has compassion within their hearts. It's wiser perhaps not to always expect the best from people, in fact it's better not to have any expectations at all. To see things at face value, so I'm not thrown into a spin by random acts of unkindness. 

Tuesday, 25 June 2013

Brain storm blowing in

So I've hopped off Facebook, spent all my money, got no lover, so I may as well try start figuring out the story I want to write. I'm just going to put down a whole heap of fragmented ideas here, see what happens.

The female forensic structural engineer going to investigate a fault in a remote mining camp. Or implement a renewable energy project in a remote area of Australia.

Sent there by her lover, who is also her team leader, he's married.

She is sexually assaulted while she is out on site. Concern, stereotyping unfairly mining/ remote communities. Maybe it's a car accident instead, she is hurt. Something else, neither of these are right.

Not a fun story to write? Who would want to read something set in a Mining camp. If it were describing a new technology, or something many people aren't that familiar with, it could be okay.

It would have to be juxtaposed with another story. Her twin? Leading a different life somewhere else? She might be an athlete or dancer, something non academic. Would they be close, or divided. I think close. A healthy sisterhood.

Any Children? Or a long term relationship. One twin with, one without, exploring these decisions and implications. Which would be a mother?

Words, criticism, verbal abuse, maybe that's what the engineer experiences in the mining camp from the project manager out there.

Dementia? Maybe the story could be a retelling of their life story from one twin who has memory, and the other who has not.
I'm definitely interested in exploring sexual relationships between people that work together. And the masculine, non-emotional nature of many work places. 

Interested in exploring obesity in some way. This is such a huge issue, a shameful issue really when you consider the degree of starvation in the world. Maybe the girls have a friend who is obese in their life that plays some sort of pivotal role. Or a brother, step parent. 

But I also want to create a female hero, somewhere between Jane Tennyson as played by Helen Mirren, and Buffy the Vampire Slayer as played by Sarah Michelle Gellar. I want a story that could be filmed, that has acts of courage. Not fantasy or sci fi. Although set in the near future might be okay. 

What kind of heroic act could the engineer do? Stand up against a corporation like the Russell Crowe character in The Insider. I don't think I want to paint a corporation as the typical bad guy. Maybe it could instead be that she instead champions a new innovative approach in engineering, climate change related, renewable energies. Something a little inspired by Ian McEwans Solar. The genuis at work, a mess in the personal life, sleeping with her Director, obsessed by him, and every one knowing it. Having to defend that she is the authentic author of her intellectual property, the innovative technology. That would take a lot of research on my behalf. Whatever it is it could be juxtaposed with the physical heroism of her dancer/athlete twin. 


I guess I'm also interested in religious tolerance. Tolerance of Islam in Australia, even though there are instances of Islam being used to justify the denial of basic human rights to women. Religious tolerance vs feminism. 

Maybe she is an urban planner or master planner or architect or doctor or policy maker working on innovative ground breaking policy that relates to obesity and creating healthy environments, maybe it's active transport, and that's how my interest in health is woven into the story. That might be closer to my own interests than renewable energy or mining. 

How could a character like this have recurring story arcs. Maybe they could be a crack team of engineering/ architectural professionals. Different consulting projects representing different social issues. Pfft, I should just make a documentary at work.

That's enough for now. A crack team of infrastructure specialists working 20 years in the future. Global consultancy, so they can work in different countries, address different issues. I'll mull this over tonight. Bit excited, lots of real life experience that I can start with. 

Oh, also if her sister is a dancer I can introduce ideas of body image, perhaps she doesn't quite fit the stringent mould of a professional dancer, more muscular than lean. Perhaps also she is performing in a dance piece that tells a story that is also a metaphor for her sisters life/ story.

Monday, 24 June 2013

The Clearing

I ran away from the life I had. First there was the emotional retreat, then the physical one. I ran away from home. It felt like that too, that it was a rebellion, like I was making an escape under cover of darkness. Laid my plans in secret, plotted my path to freedom from the oppressive rule. Left behind a bitter broken man. Whose anger at me still boils beneath the surface. Don't trust him. No. Yet, still, on another level, against an ever darker force than himself, I could turn to him to fight for me. I'm feeling sad lately, not a sadness that comes from within me, it's one that pervades from the outside world, I'm a conduit for the angst that flys through the wind. If I had some direction, sense of purpose, outside of myself I would feel better, enthused, like I was ready to battle that sadness, to quench it, relieve it, somehow. I tried to write some goals last night, and most came easily, around fitness, motherhood, travel, relationships. It's the one around my life's work that fails me. I simply do not, can not see, in which direction to dedicate my time to, professionally. I can see the areas of society in which I would like to work towards improving peoples circumstances but I can't identify the best way to influence, change, rebel. Through storytelling? Through research? Working in my current capacity in a different company? Or the same one, with greater focus? 

I ran away from my last life to empower myself, to free myself, so as to not waste my life managing another's darkness. But I can't stop here. I have to go further, push through this melancholy, this plateau, this inaction. I ran away, fought my way through the treacherous branches, the oily black swamp, the icy mountain and I've reached this clearing. Many paths lead from here for me. I could step out along any one of them but I remain motionless, I'm sitting cross legged in meditation, asking for more of myself, asking what is it that I want to do now. I'm trying to drown out the demands of others, and my own addictions to dreams long dead, judgements, fears, recriminations, doubts and just find a few simple truths about my own long lost heart, my centre. How can I help, how can I shine, lead, inspire, love. Where to from here my heart? 

Saturday, 22 June 2013

Dripping Boy

Moments of passion, of shared love, is this what I live for? The few highest peaks in my life, where I was overcome, yet unafraid, of how much I loved. I recall one moment clearly. I was young, some might say beautiful, wild still, and at the beach sun bathing in my delicious white bikini that had delicate green and purple flowers printed on it. The sort of bathing suit you can really only wear at fifteen. Hot the day was, as the Australian summer days can be, but soothing, life giving. My eyes were closed and I thought of the beautiful boy who I'd come to this particular beach with, in his old crappy tan car, who was out swimming in the sea, currently out of my reach, but not out of my mind. We were in love, he was my first lover, and we had progressed from the awkwardness of those first times, to sweet sexual encounters. Or so I recall, from this distant point many years later. My sun went away, so I opened my eyes and there he was standing at my feet, covered in the wetness of the sea, salty droplets covering his deeply bronzed skin, brown eyes just shining with life, awakened by his time in the ocean. I'd not seen anything more beautiful. Suddenly I was covered with his tall slim, tennis players body, this dripping boy, and he shook his wet hair on my arms and chest and upon my belly, so deliciously cold it felt to my sun warmed skin, then he kissed me with his salt laden lips, the temperatures of our skins rising and falling to meet in the middle, and I felt myself sink further into the sand as his body pressed more heavily into mine. Overwhelmed by sensation, and the spectacular beauty of the day, my innocent young girl's heart opened completely to him, and my body hummed with wanting. Beyond that I don't remember anything of the day. Just a few minutes of life, but one treasured by me, even beyond the heartbreak that eventually came my way many months later. Because you only fall in love like that just once, that very first, unabandoned, time.

Wednesday, 19 June 2013

Collected Quotes

I've collected some quotes over the last months, that have held some significance for me. They are in different Notes in my phone. I'm going to put them here, all together, see if there is a message in these tea leaves. 

Many women today feel that their sexuality is something distinct from the rest of the character and is cut off in some ways from their other, more admirable roles as mothers, wives, or workers (Naomi Wolfe)

Enjoy your body. Use it every way you can. Don't be afraid of it or what other people think of it. It's the greatest instrument you will ever own. 
(Mary Schmich)

Relationships are like glass. Sometimes it’s better to leave them broken than try to hurt yourself putting it back together.
(Anonymous)

The highest love a person can have for you is to wish for you to evolve into the best person you can be. No one owns you, no matter what your relationship.
(David Viscott)

Love comes when manipulation stops; when you think more about the other person than about his or her reactions to you. When you dare to reveal yourself fully. When you dare to be vulnerable.
(Dr. Joyce Brothers)

Your task is not to seek love, but to merely seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it. 

Gracefulness is to the body what understanding is to the mind. 

Absence diminishes mediocre passions and increases great ones, as the wind extinguishes candles and fans fires. 
(Francois de La Rochefoucauld)

A loving heart is the beginning of all knowledge. 
(Thomas Carlyle)

Do not be content with showing friendship in words alone, let your heart burn with loving kindness for all who may cross your path. 

A friendship can weather most things and thrive in thin soil; but it needs a little mulch of letters and phone calls and small, silly presents every so often - just to save it from drying out completely.
(Pam Brown)

Friendship is the wine of life.
(Edward Young)

She's always thinks about preposterous things. She's got a preposterous inner life. 

Because she felt for him. But what Tatiana felt for Alexander was true. What Tatiana felt for Alexander was impervious to the drumbeat if conscience. 

If you love somebody, let them go, for if they return, they were always yours. If they don't, they never were.
(Khalil Gibran)

…words have been all my life, all my life--this need is like the Spider's need who carries before her a huge Burden of Silk which she must spin out--the silk is her life, her home, her safety--her food and drink too--and if it is attacked or pulled down, why, what can she do but make more, spin afresh, design anew
(A.S. Byatt, Possession)

As a single footstep will not make a path on the earth, so a single thought will not make a pathway in the mind. To make a deep physical path, we walk again and again. To make a deep mental path, we must think over and over the kind of thoughts we wish to dominate our lives.

Pursue some path, however narrow and crooked, in which you can walk with love and reverence.
(Henry David Thoreau)

Live in the sunshine, swim the sea, drink the wild air.
(Ralph Waldo Emerson)

Be not the slave of your own past - plunge into the sublime seas, dive deep, and swim far, so you shall come back with new self-respect, with new power, and with an advanced experience that shall explain and overlook the old.
(Ralph Waldo Emerson)

There is no beautifier of complexion, or form, or behavior, like the wish to scatter joy and not pain around us.
(Ralph Waldo Emerson)

Into the Woods

I decided to jump off the Facebook wagon today. I'm not sure for how long. I've enjoyed using it, reconnecting with old friends, the daily chatter. But it's an easy distraction too, a procrastinator's dream, and I want to work on other things, some projects, my writing, my self. It's not that I'm not interested in other people, and their lives, as I love people and their stories but I guess the volume of information is getting too much, I'm becoming immune, to the things I read. It's a mess too, advertising, recycled quotes, thoughtless posts. I've always tried to be considered in what I write, my updates, to bring a smile, reach outward, to share, but I think I still often write there with a particular viewer in mind, a desire to reach him, into his heart, which is ridiculous, because logically I know he no longer visits my page. All this communication just flying out the door in vain, when I could keep it with me, work on it, polish it, and produce something a little more valuable, in a universal sense. 

Nonetheless I will miss the chatter of some of my besties so I will probably rejoin the circle, the crowd at some stage but I'll do some work first. See if removing this distraction assists my concentration, my focus. Fall of the radar for a bit, I've learned some things through the online networks, but I've reached that plateau, the point of saturation, it's time to stop checking the news for meaning that is currently getting lost on me. Into the woods is where I want to go. Just me and my sword and my dreams of making the world a better place through knowledge, knowing, insight, and love.

Thursday, 6 June 2013

Zigzag

Its incredible to me how much in love with the world I am right now. While I still have complex daily issues to address, my heart is light, childlike, rippled with joy. I went on a trip to the southern coast of our big island a few weeks back and ran in another half marathon with many other dedicated runners. I'd trained hard for the event, covering many kilometres over the preceding months and on the day I ran a good race. My legs held. The scenery was majestic, other worldly at times,  and my heart swelled with the sheer beauty of it, and I was proud too, having set myself a goal, a substantial one, and I'd dug deep and fulfilled my little dream of running that great ocean road. 

My boys came with me and shared the experience and I was grateful for their support. Grateful for their existence, at giving those two souls a chance at experiencing life. They are truly kind hearted beings, we have our grievances with each other, but they are few and far between. I think there is peace amongst us, I don't detect a resentment, or any deep regret from them that their mother and father live apart. I hope I'm not turning a blind eye, missing something because I don't wish to see it.

I feel a little bereft of a goal right now. For so long I had the half marathon on the horizon, propelling me forward, getting me out of bed on a cold morning. But I suppose a little meandering at times is perfectly acceptable. A little zig, a little zag for me right now. 

Wednesday, 1 May 2013

Rock Steady

Some days I am caught off guard.

I went for a run this morning, along the waters edge for some of the way. Perfect weather, the comforting warmth of our Australian winters. 15km. Numbers are important to me in my running. How far, how long did it take, the pace of each kilometre.

An old friend came for lunch. My teenage best friend. But one who wasn't just a friend of convenience, thrown together by circumstance. No, a true spiritual and intellectual comrade. We can still talk for hours about the nature, meaning of life. There is much common ground, it's a friendship of depth and substance. With some fun thrown in too. I feel like I learn something every time I spend time with her. Not a fact, or piece of information, something real, understood through the process of conversation.

So my day had been lovely, really lovely. My heart full of compassion.

We stopped to pick up footy boots from the children's dads place for training that night. And when he asked me for help with his printer, I obliged.

15 minutes in, it seemed to be going well. The printer was working. But then his anger came out, his bitter tongue, and I was caught off guard by the rapid onset of his wrath. Yet again. I walked out, told my kids we were leaving, him yelling my name, expecting obedience. To turn around like a trained dog at his beckoning. It takes so much willpower to walk onwards, forwards, to not participate in his dramas and to not be hurt by his criticisms. Will I ever be free of this desire to restore peace, to appease his anger, to not have it penetrate my skin and undo all the beauty of other parts of my life. Rock steady.

I keep self sabotaging my progress by letting him in, how can I be compassionate and protect my red heart at the same time.

Speaking of self sabotage I keep going back to the one who didn't take my hand when it was offered. I should stay away, but there are days I weaken and I go to see him, and I tell myself it's just because I'm trying to be principled and righteous but truly, rock steady desire is my motivation. And I will fall again if I'm not careful, but perhaps that's what I need. That final destructive blow of reality that blows my decadent fantasies of dancing, and laughing and kissing and traveling and making love right out of mind.

Rock steady baby. Stand your ground. Fill my rightful space in this world. Don't just give it all away.

Saturday, 20 April 2013

Cinnamon love

Tomorrow morning, I'll bake a cake. A simple, rustic one with apples in it. And I'll wait for my son to arrive on my doorstep, on his ninth birthday, to eat this cake with his friends, this not very fancy cake, made with love and cinnamon and not much culinary skill, and I'll thank the stars and the dirt and the trees for gifting me with this gentle and extraordinary boy. I'm feeling sentimental, slightly bereft, on this Birthday eve, I miss having my children with me. It is my cross to bear, a price I pay for my little freedom from domestic non bliss. It's high, this price, but I pay it as best I can, and hope its worth it.

Monday, 8 April 2013

Selfish // Selfless

'You are such an inspiration' he says quietly to me. I don't really understand why he says it or remember how I responded. But I remember warmly his earnest tone, slightly confessional. And earlier he tells me that I'm one of the few people he has ever had an authentic conversation with. My mind traversed backward through all our exchanges trying to find the points of discussion that have made him feel close to me, or that I'm someone he can trust. He is right, he can trust me with all his secrets. But I feel my desire for his body is a slight betrayal of his trust. I can't even look at his large hands without wanting to hold them. I don't think I've ever sat beside him and not brushed my skin against his. Leant in just a little closer than I should have. Maybe I'm just confusing friendship with desire. Perhaps it's really just the warmth of friendship that I feel, perhaps it's natural to want to touch one that you feel close with. But now I feel this responsibility to continue to be this 'inspiration' he speaks of. Is it my perceived bravery in striking out on my own in life, does he see how hard I try in my job, how it gives me pleasure to make my comrades smile, and encourage them to go forward in confidence. I don't know what he sees in me, but I know I want to be a heroine for him, I want to inspire him with the simple things I do, by following my tender heart through this strangeness of life. Of course it would be much nicer if I could make love to him as part of this inspirational package, but, alas, I don't think that is what he seeks from me. Earth mother, not fire lover. I could happily be either. I don't mind being the matriarch of my team, with ample bosom and open arms. A wise word. I'm getting on in life, I hope I've earned the right to call myself wise.
I like watching him when he talks. I can see the ideas appearing in his mind, like lights flashing across his face, before he articulates them, usually beautifully, in his measured resonating voice. So bright, I want to know how he thinks through life's dilemmas. The little mental jumps we make, which stepping stones he lands on in his imagination. I want more kind words from him, I feel a bit greedy for them now, for his quiet admiration. But yes, of course I know, that's not the right reason to do a thing, for shimmering words from a young lion heart. After years of spiteful sarcasm I suppose it's any wonder I'm all at sea when a man is sweet to me, so starved and unused to such things my gratitude turns to lust before I can counteract it with logic. Lust on its own isn't harmful, probably good for the wrinkles and anti-aging, just as long as I am diligent with the self
respect and the pride. I really have to learn to trust myself. Trust that I do have an inherent warmth in me, mixed in with all the natural tendencies of a human woman. Have to stop second guessing my motivations for doing things, looking for that rationale that will uncover my fatal character flaw - selfishness - my achilles heel. All my life people have made this generalisation, had this expectation about me, as I am an only child, and there are a range of stereotypes about the selfishness of only children. Add to that ten years of marriage with a male who often labelled me selfish, often unfairly, in my humble opinion, when I tried to follow my own desires. I hadn't really though about this before, had this insight, but I have a certain anxiety about being selfish, which I cover up trying to be selfless, sometimes to my own detriment, letting personal boundaries be crossed, taking on responsibility for things that shouldn't be mine, carrying guilt unnecessarily.

I think as therapy I'll lie back and have a lovely dream about laying naked on my young friend and whispering sexy, shocking things into his milky skin, until he can't stand it any longer and wants to come like an explosive gorgeous summer storm inside me. And tomorrow I'll talk to him in the office, and let my desire for him recede, in favour of a companionable and trusting friendship, and trust that it's perfectly alright to want him, because he's beautiful, more beautiful than most, and to be some sort of clumsy inspiration to him at the very same time. I can't separate the distinct strands that wind together like vines towards a distant sun that make me.

Saturday, 6 April 2013

Artist Biography

It's strange where you can find friendship. Even friendships that you know are likely transient can provide such warmth in days of loneliness. He's a gorgeous soul, this friend of mine, his creativity in his field of graphic design and photography is just so admirable, his passion for capturing and sharing beauty inspires me. He's taught me a lot about design software, always generous, and I help him in my way. We work together to make pretty documents, visions of potential urban futures. Or something. We talk all day, we like a lot of the same things, we get drunk sometimes on a Friday night. It's not a sexual interaction, he has his boy lover, and I don't think of him like that, despite his tall blue eyed beauty. He is having a solo photographic exhibition soon, his first, wants to be a photographic artist, travel the world sharing it's beauty by clever use of his lens. And I believe in him, sometimes my tainted artist heart rears its head in cynicism, but I think he has the optimism and drive, supported by talent to make it happen. So I encourage him, always. This week he asked me to write his artist biography for his exhibition. Cute little thing had been struggling with it for a long time, hard to write about yourself for public consumption at the best of times, especially if images are your tools of expression, not words. So I took his awkward draft , and I worked on it for him, and I think came up with something special, something worthy of his fine compositional eye. We came up with a name for his collection too, a perfect name. He was so grateful for my words, I could see how touched he was by my descriptions of his works, the sweet light I was able to shine on his efforts, and I was happy to be able to give him something to help on his way. Well placed encouragement can be a wondrous thing. Brave boy putting himself, his vision, so close to his heart, on display. He inspires me every day, his hard working ethic, his creativity, his ability to befriend all and sundry yet remain true to his vision. He makes me coffee, shows my tips and tricks in Indesign, laughs at my jokes, offers me his couch when I get too drunk to drive home and has been my work companion since my two best girls were made redundant. Together, for now, we will be aspiring artists. I can use a friend like him, one that gives to me, without even trying, by just being himself.

Monday, 1 April 2013

Giant woman

Sometimes when I feel my confidence recede, when feeling content in my skin seems just out of reach, I like to imagine myself as a giant woman, my legs longer, thicker than the oldest trees on the Earth, my head able to block out the moon. Gigantuan, yet graceful still. And all the people that influence my life, who pervade my thoughts, whether they wish to, or not, are miles and miles below me, the noise and pattern of their daily life, scarcely penetrating the pristine atmosphere I breathe in. And I'm so still and my heart so full of grace in my mammoth state that they notice me not, I am an anomaly of the landscape, and nothing more. Yet I know with one fluid motion I could squish a person or two with my big toe. End not their life, as this is a metaphorical state, but their presence in my mind. Their influence upon my heart. I have this power. And only this. Or I can shift my gaze, further afield, sweep my largest green eyes, across the globe, find a pretty spot and watch and learn, and not look back. So restful it can be in my giant body. My satellite viewing of my life, some emotional distance, until I'm ready to walk human sized again, towards my precarious, unpredictable, uncertain future. And be a little happier about it.

Saturday, 16 March 2013

Savage

Savage to have an experience of honeyed significance and to not know whether you are having it alone. Hard to maintain that defensive air of nonchalance when your heart is swelling and your chest is rising and a wind of sweetness just wants to spiral from your cells towards him. Did he think of me in the moments before, even the days before? Did he note the coincidental aspects of the timing that brought me into his path on that day? A sign, an omen, a connection.

Were his recited lyrics expressed with my soft heart in his mind? And if so, was it out compassion, a mere humanly kindness? Or something more resolved, deeper, lovelier? Hope makes me spiral and spin and I want to remain steady, focussed on my process of rejuvenation and renewal. Each question mark scribed above weakens me, pointless sacrifices of my energy and time. And I know now I can remain at this distance, and even further, from him, if I have to, if he loves another. So I quieten those thoughts and remind myself that in the end, I am helpless to change anyone else's feelings towards me. Thinking it, willing it, will not make it so. Better to throw my arms skywards, starbound, and embrace whatever comes my way, be it nothing, or it's delicious opposite. I suppose it might help if I were braver, let down my protective stance, drop my guard a bit. Habit now when you feel like you've probably already been shown the hand of an unrequited feeling, but your stubborn disbelieving soul won't accept it.

Writing comes easily to me after just snippets of time in his company. My unlikely muse.

Don't think on this any longer. Highly likely he's living happily ever after with a girl he loves. I know nothing of his life these days. Better I wander away for a bit, then wander back in when the time is right. Wayward girl, directions, many of them, to run in.

Monday, 4 March 2013

Song

“Sound has a profound effect on the senses. It can be both heard and felt. It can even be seen with the mind’s eye. It can almost be tasted and smelled. Sound can evoke responses of the five senses. Sound can paint a picture, produce a mood, trigger the senses to remember another time and place. From infancy we hear sound with our entire bodies. Sound speaks to the sensorium; the entire system of nerves that stimulates sensual response.” ― Louis Colaianni, The Joy of Phonetics and Accents

Even in song his voice is abrasive, a decibel too loud, intrusive. As though the darkness, or emptiness, that I fear resides inside him is embedded within the waves of sound that transmit through the surrounding air and cause my body to tighten and shrink just a little more. As though he is trying to steal the space around me by occupying it with his laden tunes. The intensity of his personality is somehow transmitted through his songs, the frequencies that constitute his voice. How it irritates me his singing languages I have no knowledge of. Perhaps it is because I don't understand the meaning of his songs, I can gauge only by their sonic quality. I want to cover my ears, run from the sound, never hear it again. It is like everything he represents for me, to me, is distilled into the sound. Worse than strong fingernails dragging across a blackboard. I don't believe there is hatred in my heart for him, his behaviors have hurt me to be sure, but I imagine I can track back through the years of his life and find the origins of his toxic spreading moods. He's been subjected to experiences that have created these tendencies, which have grown over a soft neutral heart, and have multiplied unchecked over time. But the extent of my recoil to such a simple thing as his song makes me wonder about the nature of my feelings. Is there a wild power hungry creature inside my heart wanting to be set free to destroy her oppressor. I've dreamt of taking a sword and killing him, always death by hand wielded weapons it is, but thought these dreams were conjured symbolic gestures, not reflective of a true desire for violent restitution. Does his song contain some codified key that threatens to let the violence against him in my heart, free. Free to rage and rage against every unkind word he has said to me. Against his manipulations and emotional blackmail, his threats, recriminations, his silences, his dismissals, his temper, his suffocation, his heavy heavy love.

Sigh. It's not like I have the voice of an angel.

Wednesday, 20 February 2013

Tea and Coincidence

She wandered into the kitchen with no set purpose. Still early, but a kookaburra nearby had woken her with a start. Her arthritic pain kicked in almost immediately and getting back to sleep was not going to be possible. It was a daily struggle, this rising from the bed, her body resisting the pain by refusing to move. It had taken twenty minutes to get to the standing position. The movement itself was relatively swift, it was the preceding internal struggle that swallowed her time. Like a kookaburra eating a witchety grub. She chuckled at the thought. She didn't even know if kookaburra's ate witchety grubs. She left her husband to his slumber, preferring to savour the peace in the home that his awakening would almost certainly destroy.

A cup of tea then, or coffee. Seeing as though she was in the kitchen. But which? Most people had a clear preference for their early morning hot beverage. There was those who couldn't function without a morning espresso or cappuccino. And those who liked to sip on tea to herald in the morning. She wavered each morning. Her choice depended on a variety of factors. Length of slumber, degree of pain, schedule for the day, mood, weather, presence or absence of her spouse. Today she felt like the cleanliness of tea. With just a sprinkle of sugar, and a dash of milk. In her favourite tea cup with delicate yellow flowers decorating its cylindrical form, contrasting with the large functional handle that even her awkward arthritic fingers could wrap around. She was too young to have these physical ailments. Long term use of Lupus medication was to blame. She'd broken her arm twice this year on two separate occasions, so weak were her bones. Simple little falls, with six weeks of consequences.

Perhaps some eggs for breakfast. A bit of decadence was called for today. Her beautiful twins were turning twenty-five. She could almost gasp with disbelief at how those years had flown by. On the other side of the world they were, living in London, experiencing European life, slumming it a little in low paying jobs, but she knew they were resilient, having spent most of their childhood living under the poverty line. She hoped they were happy and well, it was difficult for her, having them so far from reach. What she wouldn't give to have them both in her arms right now. To make them a beautiful Birthday cake to celebrate their quarter centuries. So bleak life was without them.

The tea was warming, the cup soothing in her hand. It kept the worries about finances and the increasingly volatile moods of her husband at bay. Moods that took most of her day managing. Like walking on eggshells, she thought with a sense of irony as she cracked the first egg into a bowl. She couldn't believe what slid out of the shell, a double yolker! A beautiful coincidence she mused, that some poor little hen had produced an egg with the potential to yield twin chicks, and it had travelled from goodness knows where to her little local store, where she had picked up this particular carton of a dozen, and selected this particular egg on the birth day of her cherished golden girls. An endorsement that on a higher plane, above the struggle of every day existence, all was right with the world. It would not do to make this precious symbolic gift into a simple omelette. A Birthday cake she would make after all. To photograph and upload to Facebook for her girls to delight in. And then she would eat a slice, a large one, and rejoice in her achievements as a mother. With renewed vigour, she tied back her hair and reached for the self raising flour.

Wednesday, 13 February 2013

Swimming Laps

I'm beginning to understand the allure of swimming laps in a long pool. I've always adored the water, particularly swimming underwater and spinning somersaults and twists and turns. But imagined that swimming laps up and down a pool would be a solitary dull undertaking. And perhaps it is only now that I have begun to seek a touch more solitude that I can appreciate this sport. It's more than that though, it's the change in substance surrounding your body, encasing your skin with its gentle sensual pressure. The resistance you encounter from the water as you slice your arms through its depths. Strengthening your muscles by its mere presence and molecular makeup.

The buoyancy of the water alleviating those normal joint pains and back aches while you move. You scarcely notice these imperfections in the alignment of your body when on land as they are ever present, a constant white noise of sensation, discovered only by their absence in a different atmosphere. Relief from these can free your mind, help it rise above its usual preoccupation with dealing with discomfort and focus upon other matters. It's a slight sideways step into another world, this entry to the pool. And you can see its influence on the bodies of elite swimmers.

During the backstroke I have greater awareness of breath entering my lungs, their rhythmic expansion and collapse. The process of life giving, oxygen conversion to energy.

When the sun is shining and the water cool, the contrasts are invigorating, blessed warmth against alleviating cool.

When you emerge, so many laps later, I currently like to swim 30 laps, moving through the air, feels different, you note it's easy texture, feel it as the substance that it is, instead of the usual nothingness. A changing substance, rapidly shifting composition, we are lead to believe, to the point where we will no longer find its entry into our bodies so pleasant. And we are to blame for this transformation of our atmosphere, for our eventual demise.

Such a tragic turn of events. An ill fated species, unable to stop ourselves from world wide slow burning suicide. Perhaps not, perhaps the revolution is coming, whispered voices advocating a change in our industrial ways, are gathering decibels and we will love trees and the air and each other, more than the fear that keeps us enslaved to this process of planetary dismantling.

Swim and take note, my advice for today.

Sunday, 27 January 2013

Chasing my Tail

I'm reading a beautiful book, a tragic love story. Two loves kept apart by false accusations, and war. The writing is gorgeous, detailed. I can't comprehend that it is a work of fiction, of the power of the mind that created this tale with all it's intricacy and fleshiness. How? It is like a magical trick I can't understand. I try to write and all I can come up with is the chitter chatter of my daily life. A simplistic print of the light breeziness of my mind, the preoccupations of an ordinary life. I like to think that there are epic tales hidden beneath the surface and I just don't know how right now to convert them into words on a page. They are shadows out of my reach. Tropical fish not succumbing to my ill chosen bait. Swirling coloured forms slipping through the web of my cantations. I try to find the words, or the characters, the images that might describe how I perceive the world, but I soon grow tired, find distractions to maneuver me away from their pursuit. Often I'll just go lie down after these attempted bursts of activity and give myself an orgasm instead because that's easier, and pleasurable and instant. But that's hardly going to bring about social justice now is it!? I lack the perseverance to create works of meaning. Or is it indecision. What is it that I want to say? What is so important that I should dedicate hours to creating a suitable metaphor that will shed light on its significance? I'm procrastinating right now by lamenting my lack of skill instead of answering those difficult life questions! How easily we wile away the hours with distractions instead of facing the abyss. Whatever that abyss might be. Instead we'll hook ourselves up to the great Apple and the master Google or even the bewitching sugar and distract the very life out of ourselves. I am guilty of it, of turning away from old school pleasures earned the hard way to the comfort of the device or a short lasting sugar high. On another topic, severe weather here in my city, flood warnings. Makes me feel vulnerable. Coupled with a nagging urgency. That whispering in my ear, now, now, now is the time. I have to stop turning away from finding meaning in my life, from finding my field of work. I don't want to be a professional administrator no matter how good I am at it! Like other aspects of life, my creative work will only find shape through repetition, practice. Once upon a time I could only run one or two kilometres, now I run half marathons! It took much sweat and consistency to get me there. I must have patience, and enjoy this journey into a new skill, take pride and pleasure in this blog which is just a first step in learning a whole new world. I'm hard on myself sometimes, it's quite pointless. Lights are flickering here, from the wild weather, might lose power soon, fall into darkness. Might be good for me, my eyes are sore from staring at televisions and other glowing things. Nobody in this country copes well with being cooped up by the weather for too long. We are unaccustomed to it.
I've chased my tail here for long enough, its time to return to the book that inspired this entry, and then towards sleep.

Saturday, 26 January 2013

Don't give up the fight

Tie myself into the white suit. No shoes on my feet. Bow on entry to the dull community hall. Lineup. Warmup. Technique after technique, repeat and repeat until perfect. Kata. Jion, Heian Godan, Tekki Shodan, and the rest. Such beautiful sequences of movement, yet effective, even deadly, in the right hands. My body tracing the same arc as many before me who have practiced this art through time across many countries. Makes me feel connected to them all. Those millions who have released their kiai at the close of each familiar sequence. I enjoy the precision, the element of performance in kata, being able to give it my all in this safe training zone. I'm getting stronger, knowing my body better, despite the aging process. Then sparring, practice fighting, with a respected partner, sometimes a child, sometimes a grown man, sometimes a trusted female friend. It's challenging, and I wear my bruises with pride, like a symbol of my passion for life. Like they mark me as someone brave or adventurous. I want the black belt now. When I trained a few years ago I felt I couldn't prioritize it. Too much time away from my children who were younger then, needed my time, as well as my guidance. And it conflicted with my partners perception of how I should spend my time. But ultimately I lacked the self belief that I could achieve the goal, pass the trials. I know better now. My boys come and train with me these days, it was their wish to, and are learning the katas I know so well, it makes me feel closer to them somehow, learning this art together.
The training produces a disciplined mind, you find that place at times when you are challenged, where you just don't give up, you don't succumb, that spirit of survival. And your body starts to become fit, lean, agile, sculpted through functional practice and not hours in the artificiality of the gym. And when I walk alone in the night I have a small amount of assurance that I have a hope of counteracting an attacker. I'm not so naive to think I can withstand a more severe attack, but I've given myself a chance. I would hate for some ugly egotistical bastard to bring me to my end. And I don't want to live in fear of violence used against me, or against my children. I want us to walk with our heads held high through the environments and landscapes of our choosing. Idealistic, granted, there are many scenarios around the world that would set my heart racing and freeze me in my tracks.
I like the guidance I can give the less experienced students at times as well as the care the more senior members of the club give to me and others. It's nice to see how some of the younger women and girls shine in this sport. All with our whites on, the uniform of the sport, leveling the playing field sartorially speaking. I'd like to dream that maybe one day I could help some young woman overcome the pressures of body image and find love for her body and all it can do, the shapes it can make, the power it can wield.
So there it is, just quietly, a goal, now written in the cyber equivalent of ink - I will make an attempt, or perhaps more than one attempt, to gain a black belt in Shotokan Karate.

Thursday, 24 January 2013

Back to Sleep

Sigh. A dinner date on Friday night with a man I knew as a child, recently reconnected through the online networks. I thought maybe, just maybe, that I might find a spark with this one. And whilst it was nice, and the conversation interesting and free flowing I soon grew weary. Nothing in me wanted to touch him, there was an absence of attraction. Falling in love, or lust, doesn't happen over one dinner I suppose. Perhaps it is my expectations that are ruining my chances of enjoying a pleasant evening. I felt slightly sad afterwards, depleted by the realization that powerful attraction is actually quite a rarity. It's just not going to be that easy to find one who will melt my heart, especially now I am so protective of it, having done so much work to nurture it back to whole.

It takes time and energy to come to know someone. Or at least to be at ease in their company, whilst still stimulated by the exchange. I'm just not sure I can be bothered to make such a journey towards someone else when efforts towards other goals are just as rewarding, involve less risk, and make me happy. Running makes me happy, working towards my black belt makes me happy, writing down my thoughts sometimes makes me happy, dancing with my friends makes me happy. Knowing a man? Loving a man, I'm not so sure these days that this will make me happy.

Perhaps single is a better state of affairs for me right now. Luxuriate in my newly found freedom. Find confidence in following my dreams, even just having dreams that I want to bring to life is a novelty. I wasted so much energy just managing a relationship, and the trials that went along with it, why would I walk that path again.

The inner romantic likes to raise her eyes and look around sometimes I suppose, and I'll let her. And pass her a tissue when each date fails to elevate her heart rate, flood her senses, captivate her imagination and make her shiver with desire. Poor lass, back to sleep again for awhile. The rest of us have work to do.

Monday, 7 January 2013

Be Brave Girl

I am protective of this one, I want to save her from the beatings she is getting from misfortune.

I thought that being a twin would exempt her from loneliness, from needing so desperately to find another, a partner, a lover, a man. But it seems that isn't so, it doesn't provide the respite, the relief I imagined.

She says it frequently, that she is unlucky, and I always refute this, but I do wonder how much a girl like that, on her own, can take before despair takes it toll.

She's just lost her job. The one which saw her sit next to me each day, she was my work little sister and she brightened my day with her quirky outfits, slightly crooked face, pretty golden hair and sweet personality. Tiny girl, but voluptuous still.

Why she hasn't found love I am not sure, it could be the lack of confidence, the shyness, or just timing. But she's feeling the pressure, approaching 30 when friends are marrying, having children, and she wants it to be her turn. She grows impatient for a prince. Her expectations of this imagined future love are high. There is a yearning, a sadness, and wretched desperation I have observed in a few young woman who haven't had successful long term relationships by their early thirties. They require endorsement of a kind - yes - you are worthy of love and adoration. Self doubt can haunt if left unchecked. And not stifled by radical self love. Lack of a committed lover, if that is what is desired, can hurt, acutely, during this age.

My lovely brave girl, her parents offer no security or comfort. They love her, and her siblings both, but they are poor, very poor and facing their own demons. Down on their luck, especially the father figure. Too many wild years, too much time getting high, and now they are in ruins. If you judge by the usual social norms. I know he has his unique slightly deranged charms.

She has no money behind her, no lover to help tide her over if she can't find another job, and I see she is scared, just holding it together. I am worried for her too, but try not to let her see this. I'm not sure if she has the resiliency to cope if this state of unemployment continues, it's so hard at the moment to find work, good work, and we've been spoiled by a year of working with a team we both adored, in a building of utter beauty. I wait every day for a call from her telling me she has found an amazing new role. I hope that call comes soon.

I believe in her, she is easy to love. I just wish she would find the self belief to move confidently in the world, acknowledge her own beauty and skill just a little more. May my shiny girl find her dream job some day soon, or a special love, because it's too hard to be a girl who wears her vulnerability on her sleeve for too long. Too hard to fight battles across many fronts in cute short dresses and outrageous shoes. I want to see her smile reach her eyes again. Don't give up little darling.

Wednesday, 2 January 2013

Father

My eldest son plays cricket with a pair of brothers. They are part of a set of triplets actually with the third being a girl, who is also an accomplished cricketer.

It seems their father is ill, cursed perhaps with cancer. His frailty worsening as the cricket season progresses. Now he comes armed with a walker, his arms bandaged, perhaps from transfusions, I don't know, his voice rasping, hoarse, disappearing. His wife or partner now cast in the role of carer. 

How painful for these children, not yet teenagers, to watch this deterioration, to see the body embracing their father 's spirit whither and succumb to this illness which right now appears to be the stronger force. Stronger than the treatment provided by his doctors, and all the medical knowledge of centuries behind them. 

I don't think he can win this battle, although I want to barrack for him, it seems impossible to come back from the point he is at. My heart is so sad for these children learning this lesson so young. How will they react, should he pass, beyond the infinite grief, will they be angry, feel cheated, afraid. They are tall proud looking children. Will they realise, fully, more so than those who have not experienced such a monument loss, the absolute preciousness of life. 

So tragic to be blessed with the unusual circumstance of triplets, then be pulled away just as they begin to blossom. 

I take for granted sometimes my time doing the mundane things, like watching them play cricket. I often read my book while sitting there, and travel off to an imagery world, forgetting that I won't have an infinite supply of experiences with my boys. I must remember this poor brave man, and cherish the moments of sweetness that I get to share with my brown eyed delicious boys.

And as a community, it will be up to us all, to make contributions to the lives of those kids, if their father can't win this final fight. 

Please

Please. Let me steal you out of time for a while, to return you, unchanged, when I'm done.

Let me take you and ride next to you on a train across another country with my head on your shoulder and my hand engulfed by yours. Let's travel and be inspired by the diversity of expression in the world. Let's party in many parts of the globe and dance and lose our shit together and find comfort in each others bodies in dodgy lodgings.

Please let me lay a thousand kisses on your dimples, those crescent moon shaped crevices, that bring character to your face, and then let me ruffle your hair with my tender hands.

Let's read books about sex and learn how to be sensual and beautiful lovers together. Let's make love every day, let's find the outer extents of our sexual desire together.

Piggyback me when my high heels hurt.

Let me listen to your gravelly laugh with my ear against your chest. 

Let's kiss in the cinema during an arthouse film and let me make you hard in the darkened theatre. Let me teach you the things I know.

Dance with me, let's take tango classes together, lead me, and I will follow the pattern you carve, and you will know instinctively where I wish to be led, and let our passion for life, find poetic expression.

Let me show you love, and let me play, without needing to make you mine. Let me tread feather lightly on you, and return you unharmed, to resume your expected path in this world.