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The Latest Conundrum

I wonder if she knows she's been sidelined - this is what I must look like when I've been hit. Sort of there, but not really.

I wonder if she knows she’s been sidelined – this is what I must look like when I’ve been hit. Sort of there, but not really.

Answer me this as it’s a question that’s been bugging me – why is it that you can’t go through life in a steady continuous motion, instead you’re pelted from all directions until you’re down and then you need to re-group before you can carry on again? I’m not even sure my question makes sense, so let me give you some context. When your life is steady and all is going well, you’re making time for hobbies, work is manageable, family is a-ok, you’re eating well and even getting in some exercise – when BOOM – from nowhere, you’re struck down. You don’t know what’s hit you, you just know that you’ve lost your way. Depending on how hard you’ve been hit will determine how long it takes for you to get back up again. In my case, the sign I’ve been hit is the messiness of my desk in my study. It sounds so trite as I type it, and I’m looking at my desk now – it’s been far messier, it’s also been far tidier. I’m in the process of getting up. By the time I’ve reached “messy desk” level, that’s when I realise that life’s been passing me by in a blur and I’ve been operating in auto-pilot mode – the hobbies haven’t been touched, exercise and healthy eating abandoned, family is carrying on as though I’m not even there (maybe because I haven’t been), friends have become distant, and the only part of me functioning is the part of me I take to work. How long have I been in this coma-like state, not noticing that life was still happening but that I had been felled? I’ve watched those tv shows where whole houses look like my study desk, where their occupants don’t know where to start in order to re-gain control. They must have been side-swiped for years without even realising, and then when they’ve come to they don’t know where to even start to sort themselves out and so they continue to live in their mess (until a well-meaning tv show comes along to help them).

It’s almost as though life is: (fine, fine, fine, fine, BOOM…. …. …. …. what the hell just happened? Look at the state of this desk, flurry of activity, not quite fine, almost fine, fine, fine, fine) x repeat

The part I struggle to understand is that you don’t see the projectile coming, or who has thrown it, or where it even hit you. You don’t even know how long you’ve been out for. That’s the frustrating part of all this. Is this menopalooza, is it depression, or anxiety or is it just plain old life? Do I take a potion, rub on a lotion, take a bex and have a long lie down? What is the solution? You know, I would be able to make sense of the pattern if I knew where the projectiles were coming from – an illness, family issues, work issues, or any of other big and little traumas that come our way. But when everything is hunky-dory, and then you’re sidelined – now that really pisses me off. That’s unfair and totally not sportsman-like. I don’t know what the solution is, but I know it’s helped to angry-type this out.

 

The “Enter if you Dare” Shop

Maybe the shopkeeper was a distant relative of the above. The family resemblance would be uncanny if it were true, which of course it isn't.

Maybe the shopkeeper was a distant relative of the above. The family resemblance would be uncanny if it were true, which of course it isn’t.

The shop was no longer boarded up, its glass windows and doors were fingerprint-free and this was positively inviting to the weary traveler. The door opened easily and the layout had been revamped since the last visit. Sure the small cafe tables and chairs were gone, but the new shelving and new stock ranging from grocery items to last-minute holiday paraphernalia and everything in between was new, fresh and would definitely be popular with the tourists. Best of all, the for-real coffee machine on the side counter meant this was definitely going to be the place to visit daily during the short break. She must have seen me looking at the coffee machine,

“The machine’s not working and I don’t know when they’re coming to fix it”.

End of conversation. Is there a worse sentence in the english language than that? My daydream bubble of walking to the store each morning, ordering a cappuccino, buying the paper then wandering back to the beach to sip the coffee, occasionally glance at the paper, soak up the beach goodness, burst with that one sentence. Urgh. I had noticed her dour face upon entering the store, and I had tried to greet her but she disappeared around the back of the shop. She must have been watching me taking in all the newness and decided to put me right about the coffee machine with her only spoken sentence. I can only imagine all the sentences she must have been thinking!

There are just some people in this world who should not be customer facing. Was she the new owner or was she babysitting the shop for someone else; did she put all her life-savings into the renovations (beautifully done) and now realised her mistake – that customers, mostly bubbly happy tourists and their noisy sand-covered children, would be coming to the shop; was she roped into this by her family, thinking this would be a great project for her, keep her busy  and give meaning to her days. Whatever the reason for her being there, she should not have been there. And you know the vibe you get when you just know that it’s not bad-day vibes someone is exuding, this was entire-life-why-are-there-people-everywhere vibes. The store should have had a warning or at least be appropriately named – enter if you dare; be prepared for rudeness along with no service; service with a snarl; you’re getting the picure. Needless to say, I didn’t go back to the shop for the duration of my stay. I was trying to soak in as much relaxation as I could in the few days I had away and made do so I didn’t need to go to that shop (the only shop within a 15 minutes drive), plus the lack of coffee would do me good. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m home and really need a coffee.

Life Imitates Computer Breakdown

Here's to new technology and a new voice.

Here’s to new technology and a new voice.

Towards the end of last year my trusty but slow computer was getting glitchy in random ways. I couldn’t edit images while listening to music, it was either one task or the other; it would freeze but then spring to life if the techy ones in the family had a look at it; while typing away, the words wouldn’t appear on the screen until the computer felt like showing them; it even became non-responsive occasionally, yet would spring into action when the techy ones did their special thing (you tech people probably know what they did, but I certainly don’t and couldn’t even begin to explain). Then, right on new year, it just stopped. No response and this time it didn’t matter what the techy ones did to it, it was over.

Now, at that same time and quite unbeknownst to my conscious self, my life was also mimicking my old computer – glitchy, slow, non-responsive and certainly the better days way in the past. Quite literally, with my computer quite dead, so was so much of my life as I knew it. For months I had been going through the motions and only spark to life when cajoled by others. I’ll spell it out here – I was unhappy, yet didn’t know what to do about it. I feel uncomfortable even admitting it but the unhappiness crept up slowly and intermittently, like the computer glitches. It didn’t appear that anything in particular needed addressing as there didn’t seem to be a clear pattern of malfunction, so how could I fix my computer, or even my life, if I couldn’t explain what was wrong. There was only one positive aspect that kept me together, a new job. It came out of the blue and it saved me and my computer. I was able to buy new parts for the computer, the techy ones in the family built it for me and I’ve slowly been getting to know this new computer. And much like my life imitated my computer problems, my life is also imitating the new computer getting-to-know-you learning curve. Miraculously I didn’t lose any of the data on my computer, I didn’t lose any parts of my life either; the software programs have all been loaded onto the new computer, the new rules for this new chapter of my life have also been set; as there’s been software updates I’m sometimes frustrated that I need to learn new ways to access my information, and I’m learning new ways of communicating so that my messages are clear and understood. I have re-found my voice, a voice that had been growing ever silent as time went on – and I hadn’t even realised it was happening. Is it any wonder I was unhappy and unwilling to express it.

My hope is that I don’t lose this voice of mine, that I do speak up, that I will master how this new computer of mine works and that this newer version will bring me the joy that had been missing for so long.

It Takes All Types

Although you'd never know it, she really was quite a character with the most wicked sense of humour.

Not always the life of the party, and some would say tending towards being a depressive, on her good days she really was quite a character with the most wicked sense of humour. She just wanted to be given a chance.

Hands up – who here has a Facebook account? Or you know of someone who has FB? Or you’ve at least heard of FB? Ok, good, you’re still with me… Now when you see posts with titles along the lines of “the types of people you should unfriend immediately”, if you’re like me then you’ve probably clicked on those links because you thought you’d be given useful information. Vital information. Information that would render sleep impossible if you didn’t click on the link to be informed of what you should do. The world’s a scary place you know with lots of weirdos so anything I should know about who I should unfriend, I need to know about!

I fell for that trick today, I wouldn’t so much call it ‘click bait’ because the article was genuine, only that the information was useless to me. It mentioned all the people that are currently my FB friends – the braggers, the depressives, the politicos, and others – you get the picture, apparently they’re the ones you need to unfriend immediately if you value your sanity. Just your typical human with all their flaws and idiosyncrasies. We all have friends who love to brag about their life, their possessions, their travel, and of course they can be annoying but not worthy of being unfriended. And the depressives, well life is pretty tough for them but I wouldn’t turn my back on them. And the politicos, if you’re on opposing sides then they’re either good for a laugh or they can show you how the other mindset ticks. If you’re on the same political side of the fence, it may help re-assure you that your beliefs have merit.

The best thing about social media platforms like FB is that if you’ve had enough of hearing about someone’s fancy car or holiday, or how someone may be struggling with their self worth, or perhaps you’ve had a gutful of seeing nothing but political links from your friends’ posts, the simple solution is to log off. I understand you can only complete so many eye rolls a day, so instead, log off and go do something else. You don’t want to unfriend your friends based on some lists that want you to reject everyone who isn’t like you (and by that I mean perfect, of course…*ahem*…). In fact, be thankful you have the ability to log off for if they were sitting in a cafe somewhere and they were boring you with all their braggery or depressiveness or fist-shaking bluster, you can’t exactly get up and leave. Yes, be thankful they’re on the other side of your screen and you can walk away without causing offence.

If we all developed the attitude of rejecting everyone who annoyed us, we wouldn’t have any FB friends or real life friends for that matter. And there’d be no need for a social platform like FB… It takes all sorts for this world of ours to go round so maybe a little tolerance wouldn’t go astray.

Strange Days Indeed

Sometimes the past doesn't want to be left behind.

Sometimes the past doesn’t want to be left behind.

Your word of the day is keta. Did you know keta refers to an image that pops into your head, in a random way, that harks back to the distant past?

Has this ever happened to you? One minute you’re walking along to work, past the smokers that are relegated outdoors even in the rain when suddenly an image flashes in your mind and one you had forgotten about, but is now for some unknown reason front and centre. The image so vivid that it makes you gasp which in turn makes the smokers stop puffing on their soggy cigarettes to check on you. You pretend that you’ve tripped on some unseen and small obstacle, lamely smile and walk on. The vision leaves you feeling a little shaken, because in today’s keta, the image you saw was a memory that occurred many years before and one that had left you emotionally wrecked at the time (and some say you’ve never recovered from). You blink your eyes rapidly and try and push that image away but it’s still visible even through tightly closed lids. As suddenly as the vision appears, with all the emotions that go along with it, the image disappears, like a tv being switched off. On, off. There, gone. Your emotions settle down and instead resume an air of what the fuck as you walk the remaining distance to work. All is normal in your world until you get home and you randomly see a pinterest post on an interesting word. And that word is keta.

Would You Like Some Rain with Your Tea?

I wonder if they'd notice if I just stood by the curtains and totally ignored them?

I wonder if they’d notice if I just stood by the curtains and totally ignored them?

Another rainy day. Summer has racked off somewhere and hasn’t left a note saying if or when it’s going to return. On a positive side, my garden won’t need any watering for a while now.  …On the negative – I hope all this rain doesn’t rot the root system of  all the plants! There’s rain and then there’s far too much rain.

I don’t know why I thought it would be a good idea all those weeks ago when I marked it on the calendar, but in less than an hour I’ll have friends coming over to dinner. All that time ago, the thought of having a summer bbq was just the thing we were all looking forward to. Fast forward to today, and I’ve been willing the phone to ring and have my friends on the other end cancel their plans. No such luck unfortunately, the phone hasn’t rung all day. It’s days like today where I would love nothing more than to be sitting reading a book, or binge watching tv, or painting or drawing or anything other than entertaining. It’s a precious day off and I’ve spent it preparing for this evening. I know once they get here, I’ll be fine, I’ll stop be-grudging the fact they’ve invaded my space (sometimes I do wonder whether I have late onset introvertism…is there even such a thing?) and I know we’ll have a good time. I’ll bloody make sure we’ll all have a good time!

It’s inevitable they’ll show up in less than 30 minutes. Hopefully I’ve prepared enough food and that it will be delicious – fingers crossed. Is it almost time for them to go home now??

Ready, Set, Sleep

Yes, this will be me sleeping for 8 hours each night. Not sure how I feel about being watched over by swans though...

Yes, this will be me sleeping for 8 hours each night. Not sure how I feel about being watched over by swans though…

One of the challenges I’ve set myself is to get 8 hours sleep a night. Well, the plan is to be in bed for 8 hours each night. I can’t guarantee that I’ll be asleep for the whole 8 hours, what with menopalooza and sleep being so elusive when you’re in the throes of hormone inbalances and everything, but I do want to give this a decent go. I’ve read that getting a good night’s sleep helps in all sorts of ways and I want to see for myself if I’ll become more productive, content, less forgetful, and generally balanced within myself. So with that, this post is short and to the point as I have about 20 minutes before I need to hit the sack and try and see what 8 hours sleep feels like.

Why is it that when you’re at a time in your life that you’re able to have a full night’s sleep, stupid hormones muck you about and say nope, no sleep for you. Stupid hormones.

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