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scraps from a bemused mind.

A full time mum who also works full time, a lover of coffee, dark chocolate, wine, and sunlight. A little bit of tomboy, a touch of 5 star, a smidgen of elegance and a lot of fierce.

Blogging gets hard 

Blogging gets hard sometimes. 

For example, when you temporarily run out of blogging oomph. When the urge to write is drowned out and smothered by…whatever. Call it writers block or whatever, when you go to blog and the cupboard is bare or you can’t be bothered to to even go to the cupboard. That is hard. 

Another example is when you have heaps and heaps of ideas demanding their time in the sun but they may not be fully formed or quite ready. There’s competing ideas in your  head and it’s hard to grab on to one idea and hold it long enough to examine it, know it and write about it in 200-1000 words.  

Have you ever been to a Butterfly Sanctuary with the butterflies fluttering and alighting and fluttering? That is the inside of my head when I have heaps of things I can write about but can’t quite decide where to start. 
Another common example is when there are perfectly writable things happening around you and to you but you can’t put it on any form of social media or publishable forum. That may be for many reasons such as: 

1. They possibly relate to your workplace in an identifiable way. Even those of you who may live under  rocks will know that passing comment or publishing things about your workplace, even in the vaguest of vague terms, can be career suicide. 

2. To protect the innocent and the guilty. One does not need a degree in forensics to trace events back to a person or peoples. And my opinion on something may well be valid, but airing it in a public domain may lose me a friend, cost me some serious angst or, because of the specific vagueness of how I write, may have someone feel targeted when they are not. 

3. When it’s the kids. Sooner or later they will grow up ( way too soon as far as I’m concerned) and I’m not sure how grateful they will be if I’ve  left them a huge digital footprint and identity.  

Recently my difficulties have been for the second and third reasons. My cupboard is not bare at all. My head is FULL of ideas but for one of many reasons, they are hard to pin down or write about. 
So, while I try to sort the innocent from the guilty, pin down a thought butterfly and make sure I don’t breach a profession/social media policy – I’ll leave you with this: 
Integrity is doing the right thing, even when it’s hard and especially when no one is watching.

Brave, fabulous and risky

Keep Calm and Be Brave

Fake it till you are fabulous. 

I’m not lucky, I’m fortunate and I work my arse off. 

 

These as were some of the headings and ideas  I want to write about but the ideas are refusing to be tied down in a post, instead, wanting to float, and bump and shine and shimmer.

They all relate to risk and opportunity, self doubt and belief, and making your own self narrative.

I won’t bore you with the details but I’ve rolled the dice in a few ways lately, all in the professional sphere.
I’ve put myself out there, and it’s certainly not without risk. And it’s too early to know if it was the right thing to do or if it will blow up in my face. And I’m thrilled with myself for doing it.
I get to practice to my principles. I get to see if I have what it takes. I get to step so wildly out of my comfort zone that it feels like I’m dancing on a table top in heels.

I get to stretch muscles that have atrophied and I get to find completely new ones.
And I will be judged, weighed and measured on how I perform. My colleagues don’t know what else I’ve achieved, or where I’ve been. They will only judge me on what I do NOW. And how well I do it. The stakes just got raised.

I am also working Monday to Friday and not shift work for the first time in approximately 20 years. And that may be the scariest thing of all!

 

Torn

This post, no matter when or indeed if it gets published, is being written as I lay in a single bed in a hotel room next to my parents.

I’ve just driven from Perisher snow fields to Lane Cove, Sydney – over 5 hours, after a full day of skiing with my family.

This week is Interschools Snow Sports – the boys ski race for their school.

Tomorrow* is also the day my dad has heart surgery.

Since dads need for surgery was established, I’ve planned to be here for it. Since the date was decided, I’ve planned to leave my kids and husband in the snow fields to be here. To that end, I packed an overnight bag and we drove two cars up to the snow, so I could go away. It was all going to depend on what time my dads surgery was booked for, and they couldn’t tell me that till he’d had his pre op testing today. So, we came down from skiing at 4pm,  and there was a text from mum about dad being booked in at 0600hrs tomorrow morning!

Holy shit.

DH came through as usual. Instead of hanging around to socialise and watch presentation of trophies with some of our favorite people on snow, he saw what I needed and packed me and the kids up and got us off the mountain. Then, whilst I showered and dressed and said good bye to my boys, he filled the car, checked tires and packed it for me.

My boys……. Well.

They are sad I’m not going to be with them tomorrow when they race but they said they were glad I would be with Poppy.
So I’m laying here, listening to my mum snore, it’s  midnight in Sydney, knowing that in 5  hours we get up to take dad for admission to hospital.

I have no input or control here and my knowledge and experience only burdens me, not helps me.

I miss my boys but I would never miss dads surgery. And it’s because DH is so spectacular at his job of being a dad and a partner that I get to be torn completely apart but also know I’m in the right spot.

* this was last week and dads surgery was a success. My eldest also made State for both events and I made it back for the following days racing. I drive 11 hours in 24, but I got to be there for my mum and dad and my husband and kids.

Jostled out of a rut

I have been going through a trying period professionally over the last 12 months or so.

Details are not required (public forum and all that) but lets remember that just because something is the RIGHT thing to do, does not mean it is the EASY thing to do. Subsequently, a few of the Brave Girl posts have been triggered by events that I have living through.

The problem in my profession and many other public service professions is this:
– to do an exemplary job, you need to feel valued and connected and challenged and significant and that you are making a contribution as a important level. And due to circumstances beyond my control, I have been hobbled and muzzled – able to turn up but not fully allowed to run and jump and twist and turn   – not able to fulfill my potential. On top of that, the insecurity that comes with being a catalyst for a tsunami  – it becomes even harder to perform at a level I would be satisfied with. None of this is directly anyones fault – just the consequences of actions that I knowingly took. 

Anyway, I looked for a new challenge and suddenly found one. A change is as good a a holiday and an opportunity came up. 
I am going to work temporarily  in a department I have never worked in, in a hospital I have never worked in, with people I have never worked with, in a role I have never performed before.

Simple, right?

It is so foreign that I am not sure what success or failure look like.

No big deal. Eerily similar to when I moved the whole family 1000km away to take this role up here  4 years ago and see if I liked it.

In a way I am excited – a chance to change perspectives, shake things up, step into the fear and beat it.

And in a bigger way I am terrified.

But I need to do this. I need to shake off the burdens of the last 12 months and see how I perform outside of this sphere. So some time on the outside is just what the doctor ordered. And I hope it will give me fresh eyes, and a dust off.

So, as I seem to have said often before – Here goes nothing!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Keep Calm and carry on

So Master 10 found himself in an emergency situation recently – no life was threatened but limbs certainly were. He wasn’t with us, his parents at the time, and he was one of the older kids in the situation.

It was a situation that certainly would have tried many of you reading this, indeed, many people full stop.

But to all accounts he just….handled it.

He called the Emergency Services, relayed the information, made the situation safe, helped the person involved, rendering first aid care until the ambulance arrived.
And afterwards – no big deal. We talked about it all, from different angles and he is cool. No problemo.

His little brother thinks he is a superhero – ” I would have been so scared of all the blood!” But Master 10 just shrugged it off.
Of course, we are proud. Super proud. And no, I didn’t specifically teach him all this stuff.

But mostly I am relieved – he knows what to do. He can make good decisions in unique situations. Thank God!!

Makes me think though-  I have long believed that young kids can learn what to do in emergency situations…….and more so now.

Hmmmm – watch this space!

 

Brave girl and change

Brave Girl got up. Time to get dressed and ready for a new day.

She looked out her window and saw that while she was busy for so long, that the seasons had changed without her noticing. She had been away with all the battles to be fought, then such a long trip back home and subsequently healing and resting, but surely it hadn’t been that long?

She pondered this whilst dressing  and acknowledged that she was glad of the opportunity presented by change. With the seasons change she could change also. But what to do?

This was all she knew, and surely she was good, even excellent at it, so how would that even translate into something else? But looking out the window, she saw that change was upon her whether she was ready or not.

Full of doubts and fears she tried to decide what the best course of action was. She finished dressing and went downstairs to put the kettle on.
Drinking a cup of coffee, she pondered, and worried and examined her doubts.

In the end, whilst she had plenty of choices, one thing she could not control is change. Brave Girl got up and decided. Since change is inevitable, she may as well embrace it. Even if it terrified her.

So, having decided to be scared and embrace change anyway, she ventured to the front door. Having opened it, her doubts returned at full volume, but Brave Girl was having none of it.

Picking up her sword, tying back her hair, Brave Girl took one step, then another out the door. Pulling the door shut behind her, but ensuring it did not lock her out, Brave Girl lifted her chin, squared her shoulders and stepped bravely into the storm of change that was coming over the hills.

” I might be scared, but I am doing it anyway.’ said Brave Girl

 

 

 

 

What do you want from me?

Hi there Dear Reader.

I have been looking at my drafts and I have nothing that I want to publish.

Nothing at all.

I have plenty written – from stuff on germs, stuffing up, politics and schmaltzy shit.

I am not in the mood to publish any of  them.

I have stuff I want to tell you, but it either won’t allow itself to be written properly or I cant tell you yet, because this is a public forum and I try really hard to not publish anything I would not tell a stranger in the street or put on a billboard. I censor my Facebook status updates similarly as well.

So. What do you want from me?

What do I write about that you enjoy?

What subject would you like me to pontificate on?

What members of the family would you like to hear about?

What do you want from me?

 

In coming weeks I expect to tell you about a change I am making professionally. I also have a family member having some pretty big surgery. Also the boys go back to school and I am sure there will be something to chat about there.

But, Dear Reader – what do you want???

 

 

Hard lessons for mummy and son

“Mummy, I spent all lunchtime today on the Friendship Chair. I couldn’t find my friend, so I sat by myself on the friendship chair all lunch time.”

(The Friendship Chair is a place you go and sit if you have nobody to play with and other kids are meant to approach you to play.)

Hear that? It is the sound of my little mummy heart cracking and bleeding.

The situation was made worse by the fact that Master 10 had said to Master 7 once ” If I see you on the Friendship Chair, I will come and play with you.”

Today Master 10 ran past, but didn’t see him, which made Master 7 even sadder.

Not my son, obviously, but how I imagine it

Now Master 7, by all accounts, is a popular kid. He has plenty of mates and his friendship group is reasonably intact since we moved to the ACT, even through his mates being put in different classes.

I think this episode is a singular one, and certainly not cause for alarm. In fact it will be a good experience for him in the “some hard lessons are best experienced early” kind of way. But, once again the fact that my precious boy was sad and lonely at lunch breaks my heart.

How hard is it when you have to stand by and watch your wee ones learn these lessons, learn to fail and be frustrated and be sad, so that they know how to handle it in the future?

 

 

 

 

Know what it is you want

Warning – there may be some politics and controversy in this piece

I have not published much lately, and not because of a lack of ideas, but but because I have been unable to resolve my ever present conflict about any ideas I have. That is – just because I have thoughts or opinions on a topic, any topic, that does not automatically infer that I have the right to make those thoughts or opinions public.

They may not deserve to be public for a few reasons such as;

  • they may be personal and not something I want to share in great discourse.
  • They may be not fully developed and I may not have all the facts.
  • Or I do not feel that by me airing them publicly that it will add to the discussion, or improve the public domain.

I mean, there have certainly been plenty of things to blog about – guns, shootings and the LGBTI community….the political debate that has raged on in America (Hillary/ Trump/ Gun control), the political debate that has raged on in Britain (Brexit) and the political debate that is happening in Australia.

Not to mention funny and amazing things that my boys have been up to, that the dogs have been up to, that I have been up to or that I have been sick for 3 weeks with back to back viruses, that has played havoc with my vertigo ( hence making it damn near impossible to sit at any screen and type) and has completely floored me. I am back at work, but still recovering.

I have had heaps of things to say, just not sure that I can justify needing to air them in public.

The shooting in Orlando is a key example. I have my opinion about guns, their use, restrictions. If anyone asks, I am happy to converse about it.

Nobody has asked.

Certainly my Facebook feed has filled with pro-gun this and anti-gun that. All one sided propaganda, and it is so one sided that it completely deters someone like me from discussion. I was having a wonderful discussion with an American who is a member of the NRA and although we disagreed on some (not all – are you surprised?) points, we both learned some things from each other – which is the whole bloody point!
Now my feed is filling with people who voted in the British referendum to stay or leave the EU. And many of these people are now saying that they were not sure what they were voting for and if they knew they would have voted differently.

Do you know what caused this?

A lack of ability to discuss things. To discuss or converse to drill deeper than the headline, into the motivating factors, and underlying causes and to truly gain an understanding of things so that you can grasp the concepts that are essential.

A good example of this is:

Imagine your child or life partner and the relationship you have with them.

Now sum that relationship up in a 5-7 word headline.

Does that encompass everything about your relationship? Does it explain why you and your partner laugh at something that is sounds horrendous but has become a private joke between you? Does it allow an outsider to understand why you allow your child leeway on certain things but other things are non negotiable, even though to the outsider it seems counter intuitive?

Will one blog piece or article explain it sufficiently?

No.

Well, now apply that perspective to anything else that matters to you in your life.

And extrapolate it out to include political interests like election policy.
When I was younger I hated pit bull dogs. I believed the media. They were trained killers, born bad, murderous dogs owned by criminals and thugs.

I have since discussed this multiple times with people on both sides of the fence, I have watched documentaries, read articles, and wherever possible, met dogs and gotten to watch them play and act and be, I have asked more questions and always been skeptical of one sided arguments. I know now that dogs are not inherently bad. They, like people can have certain traits, characteristics and certainly an entire breed of dogs should be maligned because of what a few get up to in the hands of humans.

(If this was another type of blog post, I could easily and happily insert ‘humans’ instead of ‘pit bulls’ into that paragraph…but that is for another day.)

What am I actually blogging about?

I guess I am blogging about being skeptical

http://www.dictionary.com/browse/skeptical

sceptical

ˈskɛptɪk(ə)l/
adjective
adjective: skeptical
  1. 1.
    not easily convinced; having doubts or reservations.
    “the public were deeply sceptical about some of the proposals”
    synonyms: dubious, doubtful, having reservations, taking something with a pinch of salt,doubting, questioning; More

  2. 2.
    PHILOSOPHY
    relating to the theory that certain knowledge is impossible.

Do not believe propaganda – whether it be for or against. If something is against or for an entire group of people – whether it be Muslims, white Australians, soldiers, etc – then examine it further. If something seeks to enrage you with a grabby headline – look into its source.

It is your responsibility to look into things, to see if what someone is telling you could possibly be motivated by fear, or ignorance, or laziness. i do not mean that you should believe the exact opposite of whatever you are being told – just assume that there are layers or motivating factors you may not be aware of. hell, most people put more effort into finding out the pros and cons of what vehicle they will buy, or what food they will eat then they do about the big issues.

Hell, you can apply this to individuals – not everyone is an asshole, maybe they are just having a bad day today and you unintentionally copped it.

Anyway, as you go to vote this weekend in the Australian Election – make sure you have read past the headline on whatever policies you have strong feelings for or against. Then make an informed decision.

 

 

 

 

 

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