Tag Archives: relationships

Back to the start

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The most common question I get asked is, “How did you get started?”.

Now, I know they’re not asking questions regarding how I was conceived because god knows I don’t want to discuss or imagine this. No, generally this question is asked when people see photos like this:

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Undesirable No. 1 

As an aside, people look at me fitting into one leg of my jeans or shorts or in this case, jean shorts, and comment that I’m half the size. In terms of weight loss, no. I’ve now officially lost over a third of my body weight. So I’m not half the size. Or half the person. Maybe that’s my brain being factual, or maybe it is the actual facts in answer to a statement where I have missed the point. Anything is possible. But my money would be on the latter option.

Anyway, how did I get started?

For me, the answer is this: Find a reason.

It needs to be a good one. An overarching reason. A reason that will make you tie your shoe laces and go, even when it’s cold or you’re sad or too busy or too stressed. It has to be a big reason, a reason that resonates with the core of your being and your will.

Nudging obesity related health conditions was not a big enough reason.

Being in constant pain was not a big enough reason.

Slow, unfit, hugely overweight: not big enough reasons, not for me.

Hating my body, and myself for what I’d let it become? Still not there.

Because all of these reasons, which are good reasons, weren’t enough for me to act.

For me, the big enough reason happened 14 years ago. But I didn’t turn it into a reason until July of 2015. Almost two years ago. So it took twelve years to realise the reason was there. It also took a considerable mind shift.

14 years ago, my mum died very suddenly.

She had some health issues, and was overweight.

There are things I won’t ever forget from the night she died.

It’s easy and natural to be stuck in grief.

But the thing is, I knew I was heading down a path to recreate this moment for my people. I was barrelling down the road that was going to put my people through the same thing. And when I looked at them and thought about them, I couldn’t understand why I would put them through that. For some of them, it would be the second time they would have to confront these experiences.

And so that cloak of mourning and grief had to be changed.

It became the hand on my back, pushing me forwards. It became the reminder on to the too cold too tired too hard days. It became the furnace that rose up from the pit of my belly and told me I could do this. It became the momentum behind my walking and running, the power in my weight lifting, the reason to scan my gym card or to sign up for yet another fun run.

When I hit the 50kg gone point, my aunt told me that I had realised mum’s goal.

And as my health improved, as well as my fitness, I had realised my own.

I’ve dodged a bullet, not only for myself but also for my people. And it comes down to that reason.

Essentially, my reason was love.

My reason was about changing the way that most painful moment changed my life. It took 12 years to get there, fortunately that was OK. But I don’t know how much time there was going to be to find that reason. I have no idea where I would have been today if I hadn’t started.

It’s a sobering thought.

Here’s something I know, though:

If you find a reason – and it must be a big one – then you’ve started. From there, it’s about moving. Find something you’ve enjoyed in the past. Walking? Swimming? Skipping? Set those beginning goals low. Walk to the mailbox and back each day. Walk in water if you’re sore. It’s not about speed, because you’re not racing anyone. It’s not about distance, because even marathon runners start small.

It’s just about starting.

And then remembering why you started.

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I won’t ever stop wanting my mum back. But I also know that the last thing she ever gave me was the power to save my life.

Which seems fitting, given she gave me that life in the first place.

 

The fame game

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It’s been Christmas and New Year’s since I blogged last. Time has this trick of trundling on, especially when we aren’t paying attention.

The last few weeks have been chaos. I do not enjoy chaos. My hair would suggest otherwise, I got it cut today because I am sick of finding strands around the place and beloved has a shaved head, so I can’t even blame anyone else. I look like I have an afro at the moment, not that there’s anything wrong with that, but I’m now thinking there might have been another solution to the finding hair problem, that didn’t involve me seeing the hairdresser.

I don’t understand the small talk shit you have to do at the hairdresser. The whole time I am wondering how I am meant to look at her, do I use the mirrors or turn my head? Other concerns include catching headlice, wondering why people lie about dying their hair at home, the unreasonable potato-form I take on when they drape me in the cape prior to the hair cut, and wondering if hairdressers get itchy from the hair that must accumulate on their skin after cutting hair all day long. It really is not a restful experience.

So, the last few weeks. I had big plans, all of which were thwarted after a phone call from my GP telling me to start fasting. I had a blockage in a kidney which needed fairly urgent surgery. Two surgeries, actually. The other thing I don’t manage well is changed plans. Chaos and changed plans. Incidentally, both start with CH and when I was a kid, I did speech therapy, and that CH blend is still a sound I struggle to pronounce. So the thing you sit on in my house will always be a SEAT. I also still lisp when I am tired but I am better at pretending I haven’t.

Anyway anyway, Christmas and New Year’s.

Both were good. Both were here. Both were spent with people that we love. Which is nice. Because it would be awful if we had to spend both of those events with people that we don’t like.

I was just sitting outside and the view was spectacular. Here, have a look:

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2017 is upon us. Let’s hope it isn’t the same kind of talent cull that 2016 was. That’s what everyone seems to be focusing on, when it comes to 2016. And the reality is that we lost a lot of talent. But we also lost a lot of normal people, a lot of run-of-the-mill people, a lot of people who mattered to someone. Just because it wasn’t on the news doesn’t mean it didn’t matter. Social media has added this funny element to life, hasn’t it. We spend a lot of time documenting ourselves, in much the same way these famous people were documented. But when we die, it’s our friends lists that are impacted. I suppose it comes down to where you create your world; to where you create your fame.

I am happy to be famous with my friends and family. And more and more, I want to be famous with myself. To respect what I’m achieving and to admire the attitudes and approaches. To be able to hit ‘like’ on the moments and the posts, to share the important things, to go viral with something like joy or love or self belief or something that actually matters more than ‘tag a mate who…’ or a cat using a human toilet.

What it comes down to is that I want 2017 to be a good year. And at the risk of sounding like a smug cow, 2016 was good. I got through it. I achieved some stuff. People I love achieved stuff. I witnessed survival and triumphs and laughter and friendship and kinship. I experienced moments and events that won’t shape a nation but certainly shaped my year. And on the 31st of December, the people I hold dear (s0me of them) gathered together and we said goodbye to 2016 and welcomed in 2017. Some of the people that were there, I didn’t even know til this year. Some of them, I’ve known for over 15 years. But in that moment, we were all there together. We smiled, we chatted, we ate, we peaked too soon (ahem. That was me.). We were together.

I do this thing quite often where I’ll step outside of the moment and look at it. Like I’m taking photos in my head. And the in those snapshots, I saw the culmination of the 2016 fame game. Hearts. Together.

2017?

Bring it on.

 

No Fear November

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I decided that November would be about doing things even though I was afraid; about not letting fear get in the way of taking on challenges.

November has been a good month.

Here are some of the things I did in No Fear November:

  1. Walked into a spin class late.
  2. Dealt with a frog without running away.
  3. Went to the dentist, and booked a follow-up appointment.
  4. Went to different classes at the gym with unfamiliar instructors.
  5. Wore MAKE UP and FAKE EYELASH THINGIES and did a saucy photo shoot for beloved.
  6. Wore a singlet in public.
  7. Drove beloved’s big dyke truck car a lot.
  8. Dealt with Medibank after they screwed up my health cover, without getting overwhelmed and just letting it go.
  9. Made a list with nine items on it, instead of an even and pleasing ten.

The thing about fear is that it’s relative. What sends me into a blind panic may not barely cause a ripple for you. So my list might not look like much. For me, though, these are things that would not have happened if I didn’t have #nofearnovember in my head. Or they would have, but with so much anxiety and panic that I would have been projectile vomiting the entire time.

Just accepting that I was absolutely going to do something even though it scared me removed that element of power that anxiety can have over me. It wasn’t easy. It wasn’t always pleasant. But I bloody did it.

So what now? Do I go back to letting anxiety be the boss?

No.

I discovered that I actually kind of like letting my stubbornness be the boss instead.

No Fear November is going to lead in to No Doubt December. For December, I’m going to believe in myself.

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Beloved, the flatmate who isn’t the flatmate anymore and I all completed the Santa fun run on Sunday. It was incredible to do the 6km with these two women by my side: Beloved, who has stood by me and loved me and even put special cream on my chafed bum. The flatmate who isn’t the flatmate anymore, who has been my best friend for over ten years and has seen me at my absolute worst and loved me through it. I had wanted to use the run to see how my time had improved over 12 months. I wanted to run as much of it as I could, and use to prove to myself how much had changed.

Here’s what changed:

I had no nerves. I was fine in the crowd and chaos. These things are routine for me now. I didn’t huff and puff at all. Walked and enjoyed it. Didn’t take many photos – I just wanted to soak it all in.

It wasn’t about the time. Or the agility or the speed.

This one, after 12 months, was about being thankful. For what my body has done. For the journey so far. And for the people by my side.

With those things, but especially the last one, how can I have any doubts?

No Doubt December. Are you in?

Picture This

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As far as I can see, the one thing that will absolutely be given to you with wild abandon and on a sparkly silver platter is a photo of a penis. The dick pic. Personally, I am not too sure what the fuss is about. In fact, I don’t know any person who has ever been delighted and overwhelmed with feelings of love and joy after receiving a dick pic.

In years gone by, we relied upon personality and witty repertoire to attract potential suitors. In some circles this has been simplified to one duck face in exchange for one naked mole rat, and badda-boom badda-bing, we’re away.

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Naked Mole Rat. It could be worse.

But again, I am yet to meet someone who has rushed out the door to meet someone after they have been in receipt of an image of a fellow’s naked mole rat. So obviously, I am generalising.

The thing is, I’ve recently been part of some discussions regarding this phenomenon. And to be completely honest with you, the chatter and comments are not about berating the owner of the photographed penis – they tend to revolve around total mystification about what on earth prompts this kind of thing.

I’ve done the online dating thing in the lesbian world. Number of unsolicited pictures of boobs or lady gardens: ZERO. None. Nil. Not a single one. Or pair, in the case of boobs. There are two possible reasons for this, as far as I can see:

  1. I was not worthy of receiving such pictures.
  2. Women… we just don’t do that shit.

I can honestly say to you at 38 years of age, I have never once been tempted to stick a camera between my legs and send the result to people I have never met. Or anyone, actually. Maybe I’m just not living on the edge. But the idea has never entered my head.

I guess the female equivalent to the dick pic might be the selfie? Social media is awash with these suckers, and there are NO RESTRAINTS with the selfie. Young, old, male, female – add a few filters and you’re looking fine and dandy. Which actually makes me think that maybe we’re like peacocks gone wrong. The male peacock fluffs out his feathers in an attempt to attract female feathers, while the female… um, I don’t know what the female peacock does. Actually is she even called a peacock? Is she a peavag? The big questions.

I wanted to research dick pics, to see if there was some kind of social liberation movement regarding it. I typed “dick pics” into Google and waited for the results. This was my face:

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And the results came up. Link after link.

And I’m sorry, but I just could not bring myself to click on a single one of them.

Here’s my summary:

If you have an appendage worthy of a dick pic, you stand tall and proud. But keep that pecker to yourself. If you’re a selfie type, you stand tall and proud… but this one is getting closer to where I reckon we need to be. Selfies tell a story, capture a moment – and while the dick pic might do the same, I want to see your eyes when you’re proud of something.

Because there are things way more attractive than the naked mole rat, and any other appearance of beauty.

Confidence. Humour. Time. The ability to maintain a conversation. Self respect. Respect for others. The ability to care for others.

And at the end of the day, those things are worth more than anything else.

Turquoise Rain

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2016 isn’t a year to be a music legend.

The beautiful Prince passed away earlier this week and it’s a time of sadness, social media tributes, radio stations playing more Prince then they ever have before, and an overflowing of grief surrounding the loss of someone who appeared to be a beautiful, gentle, talented man. Appeared to be, because I didn’t know him personally. Safe travels, Prince.

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It’s these “famous” deaths that send me into thought overdrive.

I have written before about feeling shocked that there was no announcement on the News when mum died. No minute of silence, no profile picture filters. 13 years ago today and the world has kept right on turning.

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Me, Dad, Mum and my sister. Sorry for the photo quality, but it’s us. A brother would join us in about 3 years.

You can grow a teenager in the amount of time mum has been gone for. I don’t know why you would, personally, but you could. Isn’t that stunning – a baby could be born, grow to be a toddler, start school, finish school, hit high school – all in the time that my mum has been gone. It’s probably not stunning for you, because most of you didn’t know her. But I knew her, as well as any of us know our parents. I knew her and I love her and I miss her.

But while I grieve her, every day, I don’t live by my grief.

This is a hard definition to make. And I’m certainly not saying it is the way to deal with grief. But it’s the way am doing it, because in the end we can only live the way it works for us.

While I’d give anything to have her back, anything to have known that her last day was her last day, anything to have had just one day more with her – none of this is possible.

But what is possible, is to hold her in my heart. To learn from her life. To cherish the people I have around me, and to ultimately remember how extraordinarily fortunate I was to have her.

Her favourite colour was turquoise, by the way. Thus the title of this post.

This is a fact I shared at her funeral service. I did a Bible reading, I can’t remember what it was but as I stood up in front of a church full of people on one of the worst days I can ever imagine, I looked out into a sea of grief. Friends, family, strangers. All with the same combination of grief, shock and pity on their faces. And I did what I do best: summoned my inner awkward.

“I’m going to do the Bible reading now. But before I do, I just want to tell you that Mum’s favourite colour is turquoise. So I am wearing turquoise undies today.”

There was laughter. There were more tears. But in that moment we were united by love.

And that is what we need most right now.

Safe travels, Mum.

The Outrage Has Spoken

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I had quite a few comments in reply to yesterday’s post. Everyone was beautifully supportive. If you missed it, some lady at the Melbourne Cup lunch beloved and I went to saw fit have a dig at me as I walked past her.

But 24 hours on, I feel pretty good about it.

I don’t live in a bubble of being completely unaware. I know I am, well, big. But the thing is, I know and the people around me know how hard I am working towards changing that. Not just to change my shape, but to also change my fitness.

In the past when this sort of thing happened, I would leave and go straight home. And there is no way in hell I’d return to where the incident occurred in a hurry. Usually, it would be coupled with panicking if I had to go out.

Not this time.

This time, yes I felt like shit for a while. What that woman said to me really did say more about her than it did about me. If that is how she gets her rocks off? Well, I feel sorry for her. I left the school yard years ago though. I didn’t engage. I haven’t said anything negative about her (in public anyway). And I haven’t given up.

For me, I think I’m taking my reassurance in the situation from a few places. The first is the support that I’ve received. The second? The fact that I am actively working my arse off to change things. She didn’t tell me anything new, her statement wasn’t something I didn’t know – but it is something I am slowly winning the battle against (19kg down last time I checked, thank you very much!). The third? While I try to be loving and caring to everyone, the reality is that this woman was only walking me home for those few short minutes. She’s not a major player in my life. She’s not worth the upset, not really – not when there are so many people who have walked with me much longer, who were shouting their support from the rooftops.

This is a short post. Mostly, to thank you all for your support.

But also, I am posting to say that I am actually OK about this. As far as I’m concerned, I won that battle. I went out and about today, I have a busy few days ahead and I don’t plan on pulling out of anything because of this woman.

It takes more than that to rock me now.

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The Literary Lunch

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So a few weeks ago the delightful Mrs Woog said that she was going to host a bloggers lunch. Mrs Woog is one of my blogging heroes. I don’t know if she has a cape and wears her undies on the outside. She might. But what she does have is one of those instantly lovable personalities that makes you wish you could go and raid her coffee machine and dig through her cupboards for hidden treats, then fart loudly as you leave. And you know it would be OK. I’m lucky, I have several friendships like this. Or maybe I have forced them to be as such, I don’t know.

Anyway anyway, just like that I’ve become distracted. I’m at my sister’s house in the Hawkesbury this weekend. My phone is connected to her government issue laptop (she’s a teacher), and I am hoping I have enough data to publish this. Time will tell.

The lunch!

I left Newy at 9:30. Being me, I knew I would spill coffee all over my clothing in the duration of the trip down so I put my lunch shirt in a bag and wore an old scruffy in the car. And as I drove to Sydney from Newcastle, my bladder began to fill. It’s OK, I reasoned. I’ll find a Maccas or a servo and get changed while I do a horse-type wee before lunch, then arrive cool calm and collected.

NOT SO, MY FRIENDS.

I found the lunch spot with bladder at capacity, and had roughly 20 minutes to spare. Not enough time to scout out a servo, and I hadn’t passed a Maccas in a while. I went to the nearby supermarket and asked if they could tell me where the nearest loo is – they pointed me to the cafe where lunch was happening. You know that funny walk you do when you have an exceptionally full bladder? That was me. For some reason I decided that I couldn’t use that toilet. So I got back in the car and had a little think.

The suburb had lots of trees. Oh don’t be disgusting I wasn’t going to wee on a tree. No, I figured I could simply pull to the side of the road and get changed in relative privacy, then return to the cafe for my ladylike wee.

It’s surprising how many houses are built to maximise view.

I found a little street called Pleasant Ave, and decided it was time for that street to see something unpleasant. Running low on time, I quickly stripped off and put my ladylike shirt on. Then buttoned it like a three year old with non-opposable thumbs. I had to rebutton that shirt twice.

By this stage I was nervous as all fuck.

Raced back to the cafe. And spotted the only big table, which already had several proper grown ups seated at it. Proper ones. Not imposters like me. I ducked into the cafe and did the BIGGEST WEE OF MY LIFE, then in my nervousness grabbed what I thought was toilet paper. I then spent several anxious moments hoping the giant wad of HAND TOWEL would flush. It did.

These proper grown up ladies were awesome, by the way. We all had stories which I imagine is why we all blog. Mrs Woog was a much gracious host, greeting me with a huge hug which calmed me right down. I pilfered a couple of champagne corks (for Cubs) and then sat back and listened.

I heard tales of fish caught in swimmers from Wendy Harmer. Of love, loss, hope and feral children. And of a common desire to write.

By the time I left I was full of excitement to blog more. I was reminded of why I blog, and what I get out of it.

And here it is:

My main aim in blogging is that making sure that people don’t feel alone. I cover a lot of stuff in this blog. Same sex relationships, mental health, faith, funny shit, misadventures. People. Story telling. But everything I write comes back down to one thing: Letting people know that there is someone else out there that experiences a range of emotions and experiences. The stuff that generally goes untalked about. The things that can be awkward to bring up. Things like mental health. Shit days. Grief. The way life can rise up and punch you in the face. The sheer joy of remembering. The twisted pathways of creating stories for things like gravestones and pulpits in a second hand store.

Because if I don’t, who will?

I’ve been punching away at this blog for around 3 years. Today, I have a fresh passion for it. So strap yourselves in, Naughty Corner people. The ride is about to get bumpy and more frequent.

I’d love to hear what you want more of from the Naughty Corner. Are there things I’m missing? Things you want to read more about? Hit me with it.

And in the meantime?

I’m about to test that data connection.

Have a top weekend.

Want to feel old? Try this.

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Get your hands on one of these little babies. They are harder to find than you’d think:

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Next, find a group of kids with ages ranging from 6-10. Show them the film canister and ask them what they think it is. They will look at you blankly.

Then, launch yourself on an explanation about the time before we had phones that could take photos. Explain what a camera is. How film works. About collecting all your rolls of film and taking them to the local pharmacy to send them away. Then how two weeks later, you’d get your photos.

You will feel old.

The other adults with you will giggle awkwardly as they sprout new grey hairs, and you might find yourself drifting into a memory of the various pictures that you have been in and taken over the years. The three month wait after your year ten formal, because there’s no point in getting one roll of film developed at a time. The disappointment of paying for a roll of film to be developed and then realising you had your lens cap on and just paid for 24 perfectly black rectangles on high gloss paper.

At 37 I’m realising that I am in a different generation. I was talking to a friend recently and realised that in our rants and cranky disgust we were actually referring to the next generation. Young people isn’t us anymore. I’m one of these people who you see memes about – people who really do think that ten years ago was the 90s, and that music today is legitimately bad (which it is).

I was at Cubs when I was showing them film canisters, and the reason I was showing them was because we were about to fill them with a mixture of bicarb and vinegar so that they’d shoot off into the air with a big loud pop. I’m pretty sure that the resulting pop is what the kids took home, and not some strange story about how their leader used to put plastic strips into little containers and send them away to get paper rectangles back.

But it’s all about perspective, in the end.

Which neatly brings me to this. Edenland shared this a few days ago, and amongst the giggles about rammed asses, the truth of the statement rose up and slapped me.

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There’s this thing that happens in life. You meet people. Some you like. Some you don’t like. Some, you know for a long time. I have a few long timers in my world, and people who I hope will end up to be long timers. But others are only around for a short time. A week. A month. A day even. Someone you nod to on the bus or road rage at when they cut you off. But whatever you do with them, you’re in their life. Part of walking them home. Part of their experience of the world. It’s made me thankful… and more aware not to be an arsehole.

Do you have any film canisters? Dare you to try to explain what they are to a kid. Who are you walking home? Are you improving the journey?

Mental Health Month: Ivy Pearl Roses

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Beloved and I drive past the local cemetery several times a week.

I often try to catch a glimpse of the rabbits that swarm to the cemetery for some vampire-like zombie reasons, I’m sure. But this week, just yesterday, I caught a glimpse of a name on a tombstone.

Ivy Pearl Roses

The name made me smile. I disappeared into an imaginary world where dear Ivy Pearl had parents who were early onset hippies, deciding that they would bestow upon their daughter the name of living things, natural things, in the hope that as she grew up she would value the natural world and the beauty that is in it, the restorative nature of life and the like. That Ivy Pearl grew into a woman who spearheaded the equal education of women and girls, a woman who had several dogs and a garden and spent her days writing stern letters to the editor and toddling to the local postbox, licking the stamp and shoving it into place with a thumb that had a nail full of dirt from her garden.

Ivy Pearl Roses.

Not just one rose, but plural. I’ve heard the surname Rose many times, and went to primary school with a beautiful local family of that name. But I’d never heard the surname Roses before. Ivy Pearl was a woman born into an abundance of beauty and buds and growth and fragrance. Her name alone was a three stage reminder of the important things in life: To grow in all circumstances; to remember that even a grain of sand can make a difference; to encourage boundaries and respect, lest you feel the pinch of thorns.

The thing is that Ivy Pearl Roses was transcribed upon an old tombstone. She didn’t appear in the cemetery recently. In reality, I’ve probably driven straight past her a million times, unable to see her name because I’d been trying desperately to spot the zombie rabbits.

There’s this irony that exists in mental health, and being as it is Mental Health Awareness Month, I’m going to share it with you.

You can be going great guns for days. Inspirational as all fuck. You can be fighting and working steadily in your wellness, strong, brave, bold, consistent. And then, life. And then, people. And then, change. And then disappointment. It doesn’t matter what your Achilles heel might be when it comes to your mental health. For a while it literally was my Achilles (which has recovered beautifully, by the way). But eventually, things can start to get harder to navigate. Your world might crumble a little bit. Your brain kicks into overdrive. Tears. Tiredness. It gets hard to form sentences. Hard to concentrate. Hard to wake up. Hard to sleep.

What gets me is that it is unreasonable to expect that life is always going to be a course of sheer inspiration and joy. You don’t get told this when you are trying to recover from mental illness. Instead you learn to measure your wellness by how you feel, instead of how you manage. The reality is that you are going to feel sad if bad stuff happens – and happen, it will. But that doesn’t mean your recovery is over, or regressing. It a side effect of engaging in life. And in my mind, engaging in life is the goal of recovery.

What does this have to do with Ivy Pearl Roses?

That’s easy. Her name is a beautiful reminder of life.

Grow in all circumstances. Remember that even a grain of sand can make a difference. Encourage boundaries and respect, lest you feel the pinch of thorns.

There is a season

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… And it is coming to an end.

You see, I come from a family that has ridden the waves of different sporting seasons. My Dad loves it all. Football. Cricket. Golf. Darts. Nothing – and I repeat, nothing – says boredom like the hushed tones that commentate a game of billiards on television. Lawn bowls is another one that comes with whispered reverence as black balls are rolled towards a smaller ball. And my god, we watched them all. The second my siblings and I tried to change the channel, with Dad fast asleep on the couch, his eyes would open mid snore and he’d inform us that he was still watching. We’d slink back in our seats and wait until his eyes closed again, to stage the next flick.

I honestly had it set in my head that this was solely a male trait.

So when I met my beloved, it didn’t occur to me to ask her if she watched sport on TV.

We met towards the end of football season. I know this because it meant that my flatmate and I weren’t using channel nine in that period of time, which was the channel that televised the footy. Beloved did confess to being a fan of footy, in particular her Manly Sea Eagles. But a part of me assumed that it was something she had caught from her own father, like hair colour or height. I was wrong. Her love of the Sea Eagles is more akin to blood flow, so vital is it to her life. By the time I realised this I quite liked her a lot, and I figured that it might be a handful of Manly games I’d have to watch just once a year.

Wrong.

Every game. Every year.

That first year we were together was the year that Manly won the premiership. And I feel dirty, knowing that it is called a premiership and not just the whole game. But it was at the grand final shenanigans that I really became aware of the world I had become ensconced in. Manly wasn’t just a team playing some game involving crash tackles and tummy sliding and a ball. To my absolute delight they were also a team that once housed the infamous Hopoate, who liked to poke his finger up the bum holes of other players when they least expected it. To date, this is the greatest source of amusement to me throughout football season, even though Hopoate hasn’t played in some time.

This year, I adopted “If you can’t beat them, join them” mentality.

I adopted a team to barrack for. I’m still uncommitted though, because to be honest the Panthers let me down this year. We started having Friday Night Pie Night, which is exactly what it sounds like: a home made pie to eat while we watch the footy. Yes, we. This is possibly why my crocheting has stepped up a notch. I encouraged beloved to start her own football discussion page on Facebook, Lozzy Talks League. It’s great. Because first and foremost, my beloved is full of passion and she really does love her footy. So when you combine the two, you get a footy fan page that is knowledgeable and clever and funny and above all, accurate. It’s also home to many a rant. However, luckily for you, there are some rants that have been censored from appearing on her page. I have no such ability to censor, and therefore it is my great delight to present to you:

The Top Three Footy Rants of 2015.

It is important to remember that these rants usually occur in the second half of the game, after the pie and usually at least one beer with a second in her hand. For this reason I am offering you a language warning. I will cleverly disguise some of the more extreme words, because while I have no problem with sharing the rants I am aware one word is the kind of word that is only uttered in these extreme circumstances.

Coming in at number three is a short but succinct evaluation of the referee’s ability to see what beloved sees. These happen quite a lot, but on this occasion, the words flew out of her mouth before she realised what she had said. This was towards the end of the game, and from memory it was at a vital stage of the game. Thus my beloved let loose with the following: “What knock on you queer caterpillar!!” I looked at her in horror then dissolved into giggles, making a mental note to include the phrase in my vocabulary at the next opportunity. The opportunity to use the phrase has yet to present itself.

Number two was a moment that thrilled me to the very core. It was a comment on the local team, the Newcastle Knights. We both fell into the habit of laughing them off as a bit of an embarrassing joke, kind of like when someone farts at a formal dining situation. But wouldn’t you know it, they bloody well up and won a game. This is how my beloved told me: “They couldn’t play to save their mother’s arsehole all season and then they finally get one up!” I wondered what had happened to endanger their mother’s arseholes, however that wasn’t important. What was important was that my beautiful beloved had given me another turn of phrase to use as soon as I possibly could. I haven’t been able to yet.

The top footy rant of 2015 happened on Friday night. It was the Bulldogs versus someone. The thing is, the Bulldogs have earned a horrible reputation for having an army of thugs as their fan base. They throw stuff and they get violent and should be banned from the competition. I was tucked up in bed when this one happened, but from what I can gather, the game unfolded with the other team kicking the Bulldogs in the bottom and beating them very nicely. However, as the win became more secure, the Bulldog fans got rowdy (as they do). And after a happy cheer from her recliner, she spoke the words that I repeated to myself again and again as I drifted off to sleep, so desperate was I to remember them forevermore. It worked. When she awoke to go to work, I immediately rolled over with a sleep drunk grin on my face, and repeated the phrase back to her:

“Why don’t you throw some shit you Bulldog supporting wankers!!!!!”

Ah, footy season! It’s nearly over once again, and this time I think a very small part of me will miss it. It’s a very small part. And I’m yet to survive the grand final. So that could change.

I’m just thankful that she’s not a cricket fan. Deal breaker, right there.