Let love conquer the darkness. Or at least give it a giant punch in the face.

Writing this, I am listening to a song on repeat.  It came up on my playlist and threw me in to a maelstrom of emotions, and once again writing some random thoughts down seems to be the only thing that might help me make some sense of this frenzy of feelings.

I have written before about the incredible circle of friends I am blessed to have.  We are connected through love and laughter, tears and truths.  We are scattered around the country and around the world, but distance is irrelevant when souls are involved.  And now one of our own is hurting.  Hurting so badly that I don’t know that she believes she’ll ever not feel this agony and emptiness. Continue reading Let love conquer the darkness. Or at least give it a giant punch in the face.

Friday music research findings – Country has it goin' on

It’s been a country music on Spotify kind of day here.  I’d pity my colleagues if I didn’t believe that they secretly enjoy it too.  They didn’t complain, so I’m making some assumptions and running with them.

Who doesn’t love kickin’ it up on the tailgate, anyway?  (I’m not 100% sure what that actually means but I’m envisioning cowboy-boot-clad-daisy-dukes-wearing-Jack-drinking dancing on the back of a pickup.  I’m adding this exact activity to my bucket list right now.)

So in the name of embracing this perky genre of goodness, I started listening to the actual lyrics and have come to some conclusions.

Modern country music themes, in no particular order, according to my uber-scientific methodology of hitting ‘play’ on this list(We’re talking current country tunes, as I realise that old school country is all about lyin’, cheatin’, heartbreak and restless hearts, typified by the superb song title ‘I Don’t Know Whether To Kill Myself Or Go Bowling’.)

  • Trucks – these cowboys sure do love their jalopies.
  • Girls – mostly brunettes, which was a little bit interesting.  All tanned.
  • Whiskey – I’m concerned that country music might have a drinking problem, TBH.  (Also, for the person (he knows who he is) who might object to my spelling of this particular brew, real cowboys only drink American spirits so let’s not argue on this one.)
  • Highways – long long highways for late night driving.  In afore-mentioned trucks.  With said girls.  And liquor. I’m optimistically assuming that Cowboys Against Drunk Driving is a thing.
  • Corn fields – for parking the trucks up in.  To drink the whiskey and make out with the girls.
  • Catfish – I’m beginning to think they are a diet staple.  I had to google what they look like.  Not one of God’s most beautiful aquatic creatures.
  • Small town pride & nostalgia – pretty sure all the pickups mentioned will have a flag or two flying proudly.  Also many ‘this place is the greatest place in the world and big cities are for pansies’ emotions.
  • Shakin’ it – lots and lots of shakin’ it by the girls.  Sometimes in the corn fields.  Usually after whiskey.  And possibly a hearty meal of catfish and grits.  Frequently on the back of the truck.  Lit by moonlight.  Is there any other way?

The most important things I have learnt from my research:

  • I not-so-secretly wish I lived in a country song.  I’d make an awesome country girl as per the main identified themes (But only in these ways.  The amazing country girls I know and love in real life will be rolling their eyes and trying not to snort coffee out their nose as they read this, as my aversion to hard work, mud and early morning starts is well known.)
  • I need cowboy boots immediately.
  • It’s potentially time for a drink.
  • I’m not doing nearly enough kissing in the moonlight.  This shall be remedied.

Having earlier maintained that my colleagues loved my music choice, Susie did come in to my office and asked if the tune playing was the same person as the one from the song before.  It wasn’t.  I’m not sure I liked her attitude.

Here’s to a weekend of Barefoot Blue Jean Nights, where we Kick The Dust Up and someone special gets Drunk On Your Love.  Sounds like a weekend well spent to me 🙂

 

P.S.  In the name of research, I have found some outstanding country music song titles.  They’re old school but you can’t help but have mad respect for the writers of:

  • Get Off the Table, Mabel (The Two Dollars is for the Beer)
  • Hand me the Pool Cue and Call Yourself an Ambulance
  • Here’s A Quarter (Call Someone Who Cares)
  • I Spent My Last Ten Dollars on Birth Control and Beer
  • Legendary Chicken Fairy
  • My Wife Ran Off With My Best Friend, And I Sure Do Miss Him

Young hearts and old friends

A dear colleague has just this week seen her oldest daughter off to university in another city.  Seeing it from her perspective, it’s been a tough time of letting go, trusting that they’ve done all they can as parents to raise a smart kid who will be just fine.  And she will be, I have no doubts at all.  I say that with the confidence of having been that teenager heading off alone, many years ago.

And in coincidental timing, I recently spent a long weekend with group of old (in the length of friendship sense, not the age sense, or so I’d like to think) and beloved friends who I met in my first years of university.  Most of them in the first week of my first year, in fact. I told my colleague this, pointing out that these people and the other friends who couldn’t be there that weekend but who are just as important, make up the bedrock my adult self is built on.  Continue reading Young hearts and old friends

Getting out of my own way – part 1

Dear lovely peeps,

I’ve been honing a particular skill recently.  And by recently, I have to admit it may be more like ‘for an extended period of time’.  This skill is one I am immensely talented at, and one which has in fact had more than merely a fleeting influence on my levels of joy and contentedness.

But not in the most positive of ways.  And ‘honing’ is a verb.  A doing word, as I recall.  And I am pretty sure that this skill is built around the opposite of ‘doing’.

Procrastinating.

That’s what I’ve been ‘busy’ with.  In spades. If ‘doing’ is the right way of explaining such dallying.  Because really it’s more like ‘not doing’.  Putting off.  Dawdling.  Deferring.  Plain old ignoring in some cases.

And now, lovely friends, the universe seems to be getting on my case about this.  It’s actually quite annoying, as procrastination is comfortable and the status quo is easy.  In fact, it’s pretty damn good.  Am I happy? Indeed I am.  I have a life with love and laughter, a job I enjoy, a tribe of the best friends a girl could possibly ask for.  Those dearest to me by-and-large have their health and happiness too, so overall I’ve got it good, and I know I am far luckier than so many people.

Am I content?  Well, this is a different question.  And it’s also where the procrastination comes in.  I’m content in that my life is very comfortable, and for that I am very grateful.  And for me, contentedness is a great space for procrastination.  Because things are good.  They’re fine.  The basics are well covered, all is ticking over as it should.  There isn’t really much extrinsic pressure to make any changes, nor is it expected.

And, quite frankly, my rather passive approach to my own life is beginning to annoy me.  I’ve got an attitude towards my attitude going on.

It’s actually amazing how busy you can keep yourself when you’re trying to avoid things.  Or feelings.  Or thoughts.  It’s particularly useful when it comes to decisions.  Because surely one can’t be expected to make choices which will then lead to changes when one is in fact just so blindingly busy.  There simply isn’t time to commit, nor is there space in such a busy life for more.  Between the usual household to-dos and work and friends and family and social media and TV and bubbly wine and the like, well, hours can so easily turn to days.  Which then become weeks, which in turn become months.  And then, before you know it, it’s been years.  Years, I say!

Eugh, I have the heebie-jeebies just thinking about it.

The above-mentioned contentedness implies, to me, a measure of fulfilment and satisfaction with where one is at and what might be available.  And this isn’t in any way a bad thing.  Our lives are built on tiny moments and not every choice or every action has to propel us onwards and upwards.  Sometimes steady and stable is the most beautiful state.

Except when it’s not. And over the past few months, while I have been sitting pretty in my steady life and getting on with The Usual, I’ve also been getting a bit antsy.  A bit unsettled.  And a bit more aware of options and opportunities.

It started out with a few small signs.  Some random conversations.  An article or two that caught my eye in the roaring waterfall of information and media we are constantly hammered by.  A few more of those up-to-this-point-twee-quotes-on-pretty-backgrounds-which-now-seem-relevant popping up on my Instafeed. A nagging feeling that it was OK to start paying a bit more attention.

Once that nagging got itself noticed, what started out as small little indications that maybe the time is coming to branch out, be a little braver, shine a little brighter, began turning in to big wildly illuminated neon signs – and you might know how much I do like a bit of the neon.

The neon has taken the form of some unexpected words of wisdom spoken in accidental encounters.  It’s taken the discovery that there are more than a few ways to use the same set of skills, and that there is an incredible group of people out in the world starting off on paths pretty much where I am now.  And some further along the path of change and discovery who are blazing trails which are lighting up some pretty spectacular options.

I know this is all a little waffly and non-specific.  I’m still finding the words to express what I am looking for and how I’m going to get there.  But the sparks of excitement and the butterflies of anticipation are back.  Actually, more than back – more than ever before.

So the time is right to address my chronic stalling.  I even stalled the un-stalling, in fact, right until now.  But I’m just going to start with the simple steps.  Start writing again.  Start talking.  Start seeing, and start celebrating.  Start reading and colouring and exploring.  Get back in the gym, and out in the air.  In to the yoga class and on to the seminars.  And this post is my first .

There are a few amazing women who are inspiring me every day with the way they’re showing up on their own new paths, and I hope they know how much I admire and appreciate them.  The Trudie’s and Karli’s and Naomi’s and Tarryne’s of the world are making it brighter for everyone, and this glow is lighting up some incredibly exciting pathways all over the proverbial show.  I hope one day to do the same for someone else, and in the meantime this is my public way of trying to get out of my own way and stop putting off the awesomeness.

That is all.  You are all lovely.

On love and loss and family and heroes

It’s been so long since I last wrote that I wasn’t sure I could remember how to log-in.  But it’s the wee small hours and I can’t sleep and something is telling me the only way I’ll be able to nod off tonight is to get these thoughts and feelings down in whatever rambling form they take.

People close to me know that my Dad is my hero.  He’s one of the strongest, wisest, smartest and most genuine men I have ever known. I’ve started many a post about my Dad, but somehow can’t get close to getting the words right.

And tonight my heart is breaking as one of my Dad’s own heroes has left us.  Continue reading On love and loss and family and heroes

Pretty sure Drew Barrymore and I would make great BFF's…you know, if I moved in those circles and all….

I realise that most of what we know of celebrities is only gleaned through mainstream media snippets, ‘exposés’ and women’s mags.  And we all know how reliable, factual and truly reflective of reality such information is.

That being said, there are a few celebs I can think of who I reckon I could easily be friends with. Granted, these assumptions are based on nothing other than said media and most likely a whole lot of transference on my behalf, as I confuse their actual personalities with characters they play onscreen.   Continue reading Pretty sure Drew Barrymore and I would make great BFF's…you know, if I moved in those circles and all….

Old friends can sometimes surprise you if you give them the chance

Every now and again you find out something a little surprising about someone which really wows you.  I had one of those moments a few evenings ago, and it really got me thinking.

I was pottering about on Instagram – as an aside, I really need an Instavention, I am following way more Burmese and Sphinx cats than is reasonable.  Which leads me to another point – do you think Mrs Podgely needs her own Instagram profile?  I am thinking yes….

Anyway, in my browsing I somehow clicked on the profile button of one of my favourite people, a very good friend.  And there was a blog link in the bio.  That was my first moment of wow, as I didn’t even realise she had a blog.  So obviously I checked it out immediately, while at the same time berating myself for not realising this important fact sooner. To be fair, it’s kind of new, but still! Continue reading Old friends can sometimes surprise you if you give them the chance

The Heart Kids connection

Public notice – this is a long one!  Once I started writing I realised I had quite a lot to say on the matter.

Writing yesterday’s post about the upcoming Tri, I stopped to think for a moment about my motivations for doing such a thing.  And today I’ve had a very strong reminder of one of my reasons.

Aside from the desire to challenge myself, prove I can do this, get fit and have some fun along the way, some of the inspiration was a little less directly personal, but integral to this decision which might’ve seemed a little random when first announced. Continue reading The Heart Kids connection

The perils of not listening when spoken to – putting the 'try' into triathlon

I am not entirely sure how it happened, but in a few short days – four, to be exact – I will be lining up at the start of a triathlon.  And then, in theory at least, I shall be ‘go-ing’ after the official ‘Ready…Set….’ is hollered.

I somehow got talked in to spending my Valentine’s Day a non-flattering shade of red by the lovely Tarryne from Change One Woman. When I say ‘talked in to’, more rightly I mean she stood in my doorway and said something about it and I was being a bad boss and not listening in the slightest and I am now paying for my rudeness with my body, as I just vaguely nodded as though I was all in when really I was probably wondering how far away lunch was.  It’s hard to come back from that sort of inauspicious beginning.

Continue reading The perils of not listening when spoken to – putting the 'try' into triathlon