Does not ask for help…

A sign to that effect was placed around Sandra Bullock’s character’s neck in the movie: “28 Days”. I can relate to that. Most of the time I don’t even think of asking for help anyway, but even when it is offered, I very rarely accept. It’s not that I don’t want it, it’s just that…well, I want to do it myself

Somewhere in my formative years, a notion got stuck that if I can’t do something by myself, it somehow doesn’t “count”. I don’t know where it started, but since I can remember, I have firmly believed that. It’s hard to explain to people because I don’t even fully understand it myself.

There has been a recurring theme in my life lately. People keep telling me that I am being too hard on myself, that I am taking myself and life too seriously. I take heed. I understand, but I don’t know how to “fix” it. How do I change 39 years’ worth of thinking?

Very closely linked to this, is this eternal fear of losing control. I have to be in control of every situation. This leads to loads and loads of unnecessary angst about things that I can and cannot control. It’s silly, I know. It’s stupid and it doesn’t have to be like that. But it is…so once again, this is a thought pattern that has been so deeply ingrained that I simply don’t know of a different way of thinking and doing.

And the really laughable thing is, I have yet to try and find a “method” to work through this that I don’t get so absolutely obsessed about that I get totally anxious about it.

It really sucks the “joy” out of life. It makes life hard. Really fucking HARD! It makes doing “silly” things impossible and doing things just for the sake of doing them because I enjoy them, just about impossible.

All of society tells you to be driven and have a goal and a purpose and give everything to reach your goal. Just thinking that exhausts me!

More than half the people I know are on anti-depressant medication. Surely that can’t be right? Surely that is a symptom of a sick society? If the way we are living is not meeting our basic emotional needs and leaves us drained, without joy and enjoyment, that can’t be right?

More than a year ago a dear friend told me to not worry so much about the fact that I am in “limbo”, that it may actually be a good place to be and I shouldn’t rush forward out of it, but rather ride out the wave of “not knowing”. It’s good advice and I haven’t forgotten it, I just haven’t figured out how to do it!

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I have been forced to ask for help over the last year. It has been a startling experience to say the least!

It would seem…that if you do ask, people are actually more than willing to help! I know…a real revelation…it only took me 39 years…

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Who ARE we, really?

When I was younger, I spent an awful lot of time wondering what people thought of me. I always wondered how they perceived me and spent inordinate amounts of energy trying to get them to understand why I had done something. I am still not sure why it was so important to me that they understood my motivations or my reasons behind doing things. Luckily, as we grow older and more sensible, we care less what others think. But is there a danger in caring too little what others think they know about us?

I spent last weekend with a friend. Towards the end of the weekend I realised I had said nothing all weekend. Nothing beyond, hello, how are you, turn the TV off please. I am a very quiet person and unless I have something to say, I just don’t talk. It makes me an exceedingly good listener. Most of the time, because I don’t have much to purvey to the world, I am very good at perceiving it. And the people within it.

We all have ideas of who other people are, and inevitably, that is all it is: a made-up version of that person. Not who they really are. But suddenly my old anxiety returned: Do people know who I really am? Do they realise what a passionate, loving person I am? Just because I don’t show it outwardly, doesn’t mean it’s not there. Have I become too comfortable not talking? Do people think I am the most boring, non-descript creature on the planet, just because I don’t tell them otherwise?

Just because my heart breaks when you hurt, doesn’t mean you feel the same. Just because I wake up crying when you are sad, doesn’t mean you will cry for me…just because I feel what you feel as if it were my own, does that mean those feelings are reciprocated? Just because I have become so good at hiding all these things I feel, doesn’t mean I don’t feel them.

Sometimes I guess we forget that other people are in fact not as good at perceiving things. Maybe we expect too much of them. Perhaps we have become so good at not caring what others think that we don’t bother to try and tell them who we really are anymore?

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The worst feeling in the world..

…is not being betrayed, or having your heart broken or being lonely. The worst feeling in the world is helplessness. 

It’s when someone you love is hurting and you are powerless to do anything for them. It’s when your child is learning a life lesson and all you can do is watch them learn it. It’s when a friend is having a hard time and all you can do is stand by.

I went to see a friend last weekend. She has always been there for me. And I mean always. We have been friends since we were 6 years old. Although I have not always been there for her and we have had our differences (bound to happen over a stretch of 33 years!) I can call her anytime for anything.

So anyway. I arrived at her house with the kids in tow who went off to play with her daughter. She was not in a good space. She hasn’t been for a long while, and I haven’t been much good to anyone lately.

But, she cooked me lunch and as we wanted to sit down at the table she knocked her wine over. There was red wine everywhere. In the butter, all over her table cloth, in the food. It was a spectacular mess. Now me, I would have lost my shit right there and probably have ruined the rest of the visit. Not this one! She surveyed the mess and called out to her husband:”Bring more wine, we’re gonna need more wine here!”

Today, after both of us having had rather tiresome weeks we met up for some retail therapy. Jeez loueese did we laugh! For a short while we were both helpless with laughter. It was a good feeling. It is a good feeling when you can, if only temporarily, do something.

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And then…you fall off your horse

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I got bucked off my horse yesterday. When you reach a certain age falling off is really not fun anymore. You are really scared that you might get really hurt, especially if you have children and other dependents. But I fell and I was OK. It wasn’t as bad as I expected. Trust me, I am pretty sore and stiff and I have a sprained finger, but there was no blood and no broken bones – bonus!

When you ride horses, it is an inevitable thing. You will at some point or another fall off. And from the minute you start riding, it gets drilled into your head. You are not a good rider until you have fallen off a certain number of times (people’s opinions vary on the exact number!). The other thing that gets drilled into your head is – you get up, you dust yourself off and you get back on that horse!

This may well be the only reason life has not managed to get me under just yet. It is so ingrained, that you just do it without thinking. You get up, spit out the blood and carry on…

The thing is, I have been expecting this fall. It was not a matter of if, but only a matter of when. Some might argue that you are inviting it because it is the law of attraction. I am not so sure…sometimes your horse is just a fool and you know that at some point they are going to catch you off balance and you will eat dirt. I have had a number of “too-close-for-comfort” moments over the last year and I knew it just had to happen at some point. So yesterday was that day.

The point is, it happened, and it wasn’t so bad. And I guess we do the same in life. We picture the absolute worst outcomes and worry about that – and then when it happens, (if it happens) it’s not nearly as bad as our imaginations told us it would be.

SO, the message for today is, stop worrying about things that haven’t happened yet and just enjoy the ride!

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On that bastard Murphy and his stupid law…

FB_IMG_1528312470430So this happened: I was just starting to feel better and cope, when some hoodlums decided to burgle my house.

Of course I hadn’t had time to sort out my insurance yet. So I am minus a laptop, tablet and some jewelery. Suffice to say I am pissed off.

It seems I have been fighting for so long. Fighting with my ex, fighting for my kids, fighting about settlements. I have just been fighting with life it seems. Non-stop. I’m tired of fighting…

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And one day, you just wake up and you’re feeling fine.

Life is weird like that. Going through trauma and drama is weird like that. For months and months and months on end, it feels like the world is ending, like you’re never going to get through this thing with your life and your sanity both intact. Every little thing is a crisis of epic proportions and it feels like every time you peek out of your hole to see if you can try to get out, life comes from somewhere and kicks you in the teeth or in the back of the head.

But then, one day, just out of the blue, you realise, everything is OK. You are still alive and for a while now, you can’t quite put your finger on it, but yes, for quite a while now, you have been (dare you even think it?): HAPPY!

And right away you get nervous and you start worrying – what might go wrong next? But you’re so happy that you think: “Hey, it’s OK. I made it this far, universe, bring it on! I am ready to start living again! And not just run of the mill surviving and making it through the day, but really living.”

Even as you think it, you start wondering whatever are you going to do with this wonderful life you’ve been given. Surely there must be more to it than this? You have wasted so long being miserable and you’re tired of wasting precious time. But now that you are not running in circles anymore chasing your own tail, it would seem that you have become used to living in panic mode. You can’t get quiet anymore and just appreciate the moment.

Time to slow down

take a deep breat

and pause…

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Sunshine after rain…

After yesterday’s rant I feel compelled to share part two today. But this time the sequel is actually better than the original!

Those boys who brought their dog in, came to find me today. They wanted to show me that the dog had been released from hospital and they had been given medication for him and a follow-up appointment.

To steal a phrase from a colleague: it was a “thump-thump-custard” moment! The dog was looking so much better and the boys were truly grateful for the help they had received. They actually left saying that they need to go home and study now, because they have exams and tests.

Hopefully they will be encouraged to bring sick animals in again to be seen to and won’t stay away because they felt that no-one cared enough to help them.

Sometimes it takes just a little bit of effort!

 

 

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