Tuesday 19 November 2013

Getting Back Up Again

It is raining in Canberra as I write this. Having grown up in the tropics, rain to me is warm and welcoming. It washes away the day and pushes back the heat. This feels like the right time to sit down and take in the last few months.

As one of the most stressful episodes of my life comes to an end, I am learning to accept that I can survive pretty much anything that life throws at me. I can survive it and not fall apart.

The thing is that surviving doesn't mean that I prospered during that time. It doesn't mean I felt happy every second. It doesn't mean I smiled and was thankful for what got me there.

There is a powerful myth in our society that dictates that happiness is something we must feel 100% of the time and if we aren't then something is wrong. That is wrong and causes a lot of self-doubt when people have a bad time. They tend to think that any emotion that isn't under-pinned by happiness is a fractured and bruised existence.

Feeling other emotions is not a failing. It is life. It is normal.

As long as there is a general happiness and more good moments than bad then I am satisfied that my life is going well.

In July, I experienced something that no woman should ever have to face. I found myself in a position that I never expected and realised that those who were obliged to protect me were unwilling to do so. That shook my view of work and life and people, in general.

The following weeks saw me slow my life down and finally stand still, in some hope that everything would stop spinning. The weeks lead to months and I didn't start working again until one week ago.

It isn't easy for anyone to not work for that long but if I hadn't had that time to rest and recover, I wouldn't be so energised and ecstatic about what I find myself doing now. Burn-out from over work and the horror of July meant that I spent weeks at my parent's house sleeping and trying to get my brain going again.

It wasn't like when I had severe clinical depression. It was nothing like that actually. There were shitty moments but it never felt so hopeless like falling in to a bottomless pit. It was tough though and there were nights for months where I slept with the lights on in my bedroom or didn't sleep until the Sun came up. For some reason, day time seemed safer. That or I was becoming a vampire. I do sparkle.

Anyone who has been through really bad patches will tell you that being in a rut isn't the most horrible part. The being in it part is something you can accept as what you are going through. It is falling in and climbing out that are the most challenging moments. No, not moments. Moments are short and fleeting. These are periods of time and everything slows down like when you stack a push bike and see the ground coming at you.

Right now, I am climbing out. Back at work and thriving as part of a real team where I feel I belong. I'm not allowed to work more than 40 hours a week which leaves me 20 more hours for life that the last job didn't. Yeah, no more 240 hour months.

Restabilising takes time. My new routine is being established. My old friends and new colleagues and awesome family and wonderful social circle are helping me bound back to a semblance of a normal life. Soon it will actually be a normal life. Accepting that I am no longer tripping on every tree root as I run blindly from the wolves is not as easy as I'd hoped. I keep checking for the wolves when a granny with a chin walks by. Sometimes, I even lose it and say I'll just give up and not participate anymore but I wake up the next day and I do.

So, I'm getting there. There are so many people I have to take aside and thank for holding my head above water. There are others who don't deserve to be mentioned or even to have a thought wasted on them. They don't matter. Only the good ones do.

And I'm a good one too. Just one who is trying to get the rhythm back in my life.

Monday 11 November 2013

Timing is Everything

About a week ago, I sent a message to my good friend Joy saying "hey." It was some ungodly hour of the night when I couldn't sleep. My friends know I get like that once in a while.

By pure chance and possibly due to sleepy eyes, I sent the "hey" message to someone else. Someone who I'd forgotten or blocked out to the point that his initials triggered nothing in my memory. None of our texts had been preserved which either meant his number came from my old work phone or I'd trashed the messages. That would be rare if I didn't send the number down the shoot with them so I figured there was a work-friend connection.

He responded commenting on the late time to send messages. I apologised saying I didn't meant to send that to him and didn't know who he was anyway. It didn't take too much banter to realise who he was.

Now, I don't regret the past. It is one of my rules. Living in the here and now, accepting what has happened to make me who I am now and going on with the lessons learnt has been my ethos for many years now.

This one however caused that twang of sadness or doubt or a just full sub-cutaneous jab to something with exposed tendons and lots of nerve endings.

There has been only one time in my life when I met a person and the chemistry was amazing and everything else was brilliant and thanks to crap timing on my part the first time and his part now, it all adds up to nothing. Just a twang like a string on a broken guitar.

And this proves two things to me...

  1. Don't look back; and
  2. Delete phone numbers from your phone that you should never ever text.

Tuesday 5 November 2013

Stages of Input

Sometimes, I can't go more than a few hours without returning to a book or two. That can last months.

Then there are times that I want to watch movie after movie until my brain is so full of stories that useful information falls out. Useful information like people's names.

Music doesn't seem to be a need that waivers. It is always there.

Not sure what changes each time to push me from one obsession to another. And they Are obsessions. Never ending walks that all of a sudden end with me feeling over-satisfied. Sometimes, I think I will never want to read or watch again.

But I do.

Monday 4 November 2013

Sally and Harry

I wrote to you.

A few times.

I deleted them. I wrote to you and it was always when I was watching movies.

There were these moments in the movies when you'd cry. Maybe you'd cry. Yeah, probably.

Then there was this movie and I typed the text. Then there was this movie and I typed a text. Then it happened again.

So tonight, Harry met Sally. So I wrote this and it's dumb and every time I think about it, I'm more and more convinced I did the right thing.

Tuesday 29 October 2013

Some things

Some things will always scare me.

There are things that we learn from willingly and there are things that are taught to us against our will. Therapists may call them triggers. Future partners may call them baggage. Employers may call them risks.

Some things may always scare me.

There are people you meet who will enrich your life and there are people who will meet you and take a little more than they give. Therapists can call them influencers. Future partners can call them exes. Employers can call that person you were with at the Christmas party last year.

Some things can scare me.

But their impact softens in time and all the lessons are learnt and filed while the Christmas party photos are still on facebook.

Friday 18 October 2013

Moving Shadows

My friends think I am part cat or was one in my last life. This comes not from my need to lick my feet but more from my ability to sleep anywhere, at any time and in what looks to others like a very uncomfortable or unnatural position.

Last night, I fell asleep on the couch. My couch is my second bed and not a rare place to find me dozing at different hours and ends of the day. In this case, I'd dozed off around 8pm-ish while playing twelve simultaneous games of Words With Friends. This was one of those times when I zzz'd without actually dropping my phone on my head. Again like a cat, waking startled and looking for someone else to blame usually accompanies that ka-thump.

It was just on the pumpkin-turning hour when my mind was swimming between awake and asleep that the movement of the shadows on the wall seemed somehow wrong to me. That feeling of pulling yourself almost drowning through the surface of the water held me more on the sleepy side of awake. That further added to how much the shadows confused. Then my brain kicked in and it wasn't in that newly woken state but driven by an intravenous coffee with Red Bull hit of adrenaline. Bam!

Now I was awake but very still and lying where my mind had exploded but my body was only following limply. The shadows were still shadows. They were cast by the outside light through the two double paned windows and on to the opposing inside wall. My windows are tall and wide with a divider between each two paned set. That line was hard and fast in the shadow.

It took less time for me to realise why the shadows were changing than it did for me to regain full consciousness. Raw fear will do that to a person.

Moving slowly from one thinly curtained window to the next was the silhouette of a man. He bobbed towards the glass and then away as he avoided the potted plants that interrupted his irregular pacing back and forth.

Then my mind realised that he wasn't pacing. He was trying the different windows. The movable glass panels were shut to keep the horrid hay fever inducing pollen out and that was why I couldn't hear him rattling at the edges until I focused my senses on the sound.

My couch sits against the wall that the windows are in. The high green leathered back meant that I was hidden from his view. The lacy inner curtains were all that were drawn so he would have seen in but without any detail. That lack of detail meant he couldn't have seen me lying in a dark room snuggled in to the forrest green leather of the couch.

I was invisible.

I was invisible at least until I moved from the couch and then there was little doubt that he would see me. Even crawling across the floor wouldn't have protected me from view. Sometimes minimalism is not as convenient as it should be.

The window shook now. Not rattled like before. He was using force.

I shook in disagreement.

The shadow moved violently and a strained metallic aching sound groaned in my general direction. I felt safer because the windows were fighting back.

Then like a bad horror movie just after the scene where they say "let's split up" and actually go ahead with that idea, my mobile phone rang. It was very much a spring-loaded cat moment and if it wasn't for the shrill whistle of my Kill Bill ringtone that seems so funky in a crowded bar, my squeal would have been very obvious.

Every single thing in that moment froze. He froze. I froze. Everyone but the phone was taking this moment seriously.

Without really thinking it through, I picked up the phone and said very loudly "Hi Mum, I was just asleep. Are you almost here? I'm not ready yet but I will be."

With that, I jumped off the couch and casually walked to the light switch and turned all the lights on.

The shadows on the wall disappeared but I could still see his still body trying to hide behind the window divider. I continued to talk in a relaxed and booming voice as he fled.

My friend on the phone was freaking out a little as I calmly and numbly but with no breath or punctuation explained what had just happened. She was simultaneously dialling the police on her other mobile while she assisted my tripping sentences with profanity as punctuation.

It was all ok in the end. The combination of the defiant fighting windows, the opportune (for me) phone call and the Kill Bill soundtrack seemed to be enough to chase my shadow friend away.

Whether or not he returns, we can't yet know. I sure hope not.

One thing I am sure about is that I'll never wake to a worrying shadow and dismiss it as a trick of the tired mind again. And honestly, I'm not sure if that is a good or bad thing.

[Update: This is fiction written for Halloween]

Wednesday 2 October 2013

Dealing with Rejection

This appeared on Facebook a week ago. It resounded with me as this is my one triggers that I still work on dealing with.

This mental conversation tool has been very effective in the the last week that I've been using it.

How to deal with rejection:

  1. Do you want something you don't have? - Yes.
  2. Did you get what wanted? - No
  3. OK - Nothing has changed then. You are exactly where you were before you decided you wanted this thing.
  4. Were you OK when you didn't have it? - Yes, I was RAD!
  5. Excellent... moving right along then.


Monday 30 September 2013

Heart Palpitations

You give me heart palpitations. Let me explain how. It actually makes a lot of sense. So I think of you and it's random and the thoughts pop in and I push them out and they keep coming. I make a coffee. Distraction seems my best hope. Normal tasks and hobbies and chores don't stop the ideas and repeated conversations. I make a coffee. An early dinner cooked with effort and detail. I make a coffee. Then the seeds need watering. They are peeping their tiny sprouts through the soil that looks a lot like coffee grinds. I make a coffee. Finished another book. One I'd read before when I was ten. I drank all those coffees I made. You give me heart palpitations.

Sunday 29 September 2013

And the band played Waltzing Matilda

I have a handful of best friends. Literally five people who are in my inner circle. That does not include my family who are my 0th circle. The friends are in the 1st circle of Manadom.

Interesting things about my friends include:

  • They are imports or if Aussie then they don't live in Australia;
  • They are non-judgemental and respect that fact that others sport differing opinions; and
  • They are very smart and extremely humble.
This is consistent and uncompromising.

Thursday 19 September 2013

Let's not play the mental health card

After the most recent massacre in the US, I have heard a line over and over again that does nothing but irk me.

It goes something like "Let's not play the PTSD card" or "Let's not play the mental health card" or some such card playing statement.

If you stop and really really think about it then you will easily come to the conclusion that a sane person does not go out there and shoot people. Not for any reason. Not outside a war zone or under some perceived threat.

Mental illness seems to be dismissed quite regularly as some kind of excuse.

My theory is that this comes from temporary insanity as a line of defence against murder charges and its overuse in American TV shows with unimaginative writers. It may also come from the idea that being locked up in a mental institution for treatment is some easier form of punishment than the rock breaking labour of real prison.

Either way, those are valid ways of dealing with people in those situations. They are not excuses or made up plot lines constructed to allow bad people to escape consequences.

Mental illness is real. It is not an excuse. It can sometimes be a reason but it is never an excuse.

I mean to take nothing from the people or the families of those who are harmed in such horrible events but I also will not let mental illness and people doing things because they are ill be treated like an escape clause.

Mental illness is real. You may not have suffered it but that doesn't make it a holiday on the beach with cocktails in coconut shells.

Mental illness is not reasonable. You may not understand what it is like for your mind to tell you something that isn't real but it does happen.

Mental illness is not a escape clause. In fact, there is a shadow that hangs over you forever that is accompanied by a pain that you will always dread.  It will go away and you will be well, if you are lucky. It will not dictate who you are always. It will however give you some empathy for the idea that sometimes people are just crazy and sometimes crazy is just people.

Your inability to comprehend something does not mean it does not exist.

Wednesday 18 September 2013

Write For Yourself

Friends and strangers often ask me how I got the confidence to write and where the skill came from. I still dispute the skill part but I'm more than happy to share the key to my seeming confidence.

There are three things that allow me to write and they are all you need.

1. Write for yourself
I never write anything for the validation or love of anyone else. My writing comes from the need to articulate and sort through my thoughts. That means that when the tapping on the keyboard ends and the readings are read and the brain dump is done then my mind is at peace.

You must find your own reason to write. Simply putting words together will not result in the authenticity you need in your written voice.

2. Write a lot
So many good writers talk about the fact that they treat their writing like a job. They write from 9-5 in the way we do our day jobs. Yes, that's a tough thing to do or mostly impossible unless you are being paid for it or are funemployed. You still must write.

Find the time to write and do it regularly. It will improve your ability to write in your voice.

3. Read a lot
Nothing will teach you how to say something like listening to someone else say that. Hanging around with people who love and play with words can be complimented by reading a lot. If it has words on it and you can make it stay still enough long enough to read it then tie it down.

The best speakers and writers are huge readers. Pick up that book.

So write for yourself and do it a lot and fill the rest of the time with reading and living.

Monday 16 September 2013

Conversations with Girlfriends

It is amazing how good it is to share your current state of temporal inanity with your female friends.

It is never the same telling it to the opposite sex no matter how empathic they are or how close you are to them. Girlfriends get you on a different level.

Until an hour long conversation tonight, I was feeling a bit like a parrot who had lost its squawk. Like Austin Powers drained of mojo. Like a girl walking barefoot in to a crowded ballroom.

The thing that has become quite apparent to me over the years is that when you tell someone else what is going on in your head, you find that you are not at all alone. In fact, you find that no matter what you think of your own thoughts of actions that they are never as bad as you think. Someone else has been there before.

There are many people out there who will just tell you to suck it up but you don't want those ones. Find someone who understands and take a short time to be understood. Then move on.

Being understood does not mean validated. It just means someone will listen and not judge you. They may accept what you are thinking or offer an alternative.

Sisters over misters.

Saturday 14 September 2013

With Oils and Spoils

I painted you a picture but not with pigments. It was crafted and planned and utterly wasted since it goes unheard. There weren't haystacks of lilies or sunflowers whipped in frenzy. There weren't blocks or legends or shapes carved from stone.

It seems that all I have are words.

So the canvas was spotless. The stone was a solid block. My tools were not tangible. My creation does not pose. Everything I said was lost with no repose.

And life goes forward like a stream of tweets with only the last ten read.
And life goes forward like a wedding once the wedding guests are fed.
And life goes forward like the doggerel that is pulsing through my head.

With the message being I wrote it, only because you exist. A message that doesn't do feelings because that is not what I do. Maybe a message that will sink in and see me safely through.

TV Show Recommendations - Sci Fi

People are always recommending TV shows to each other. I have blitzed through a few lately that I'd like to urge you to watch.


A post apocalyptic drama without zombies is a nice break. Made by the Lost crew, it has that stranded on a desert island feeling but the island is the ex-USA and all the power has been turned off. Even the whiney little kids grow up quickly and stop annoying you. It is only one season in at this point but well worth the watch.

Orphan Black

A bad girl who witnesses the suicide by train of a woman who looks exactly like her, takes on the dead woman's life and all its complications. This is not your typical American sci-fi drama and that could be because it is mostly Canadian. I watched the entire first season on the edge of my couch. If you watch nothing else on this list, watch this.

This honestly is one of the dorkiest sci-fi series I have ever watched but I can't help but love it. It is very formulaic and often predictable but the characters make up for it. The acting does improve over the seasons and so do the story lines. Guest appearances from the greats of sci-fi TV from Bionic Woman, Torchwood, Battlestar Galactica, Firefly, Star Trek: TNG & Voyager and even Warehouse's sister series Eureka, to name a few. If you love all sci-fi TV then this is your show.

Those are my top 3. Get on it!

Friday 13 September 2013

Strawberries and Dream

Sitting here eating strawberries has to be the highlight of my day.

That isn't a bad thing, with days becoming simpler. There is a lot of time to think and dream and write. Most of that writing isn't happening online. It is in books with pens on paper on thoughts. It is code in languages that didn't exist last century.

So much has happened this week. It has been a headspin of Exorcistesque proportions.

There have been so many words written and then deleted.

There have been so many words said and then retrieved.

There have been so many moments that simply have to have happened and can't be erased without some major low level formatting.

My biggest learning from this week is more a relearning of something I know and should always known consciously. It is that what I decided will happen is what will end up happening in my life. If I decided something will be brilliant then it is. If I decide it will be a large pile of poo then it ends up that way.

The will makes the path which ultimately leads to the outcome you willed.

This week may have been all kinds of broken and as long as I keep thinking that I am broken then it will keep being this way. I gave something away that was a mistake. No willing or wishing or spanking or swishing will negate that.

Instead, I have to learn a lesson from it and not let it repeat.

Sounds easy, right?


He doesn't want to define this.

This thing that is so extreme and instant and random.

He avoids the comments that commit to anything. Maybe because he does not commit to anything.
He gives as much as he can without writing it in blood. Maybe because he bleeds just like a man.
He gives me time which he has and he knows I need. But then time is the one thing he fears.

Is it possible to connect with someone in so sincere a way and deny that connection because of convention?

I'm not conventional. Thing is, most everyone else is.

Saturday 18 May 2013

Stop Being a Victim

Today, I was reading an interesting timeline of a friend of mine on Facebook. She likes to read non-fiction and hardly reads fiction these days. Her timeline is full of articles about science, feminism and art. Everything she posts is worth reading and I find the stream of articles she shares thought invoking and challenging.

The article she posted today was not too challenging. I didn't agree with its premis that men are more successful because they are more competitive and that is because they either innately or through life learn to play well in groups. It is an interesting idea but as usual myself and a lot of my female friends are living contradictions. Ask anyone who has worked with me or played boardgames with me or even had a glass of champagne with me on Melbourne Cup Day and you'll hear how insanely competitive I can be. This has been tempered with age but that drive is still alive and well and a healthy part of who I am.

That isn't the point of why I am writing this though.

Along with this post on her timeline came comments from one of our mutual friends. This friend interprets everything she reads as evidence to reinforce her view of the world. In this case, men and women work against people like her who have a competitive spirit and combine to thwart her upward and forward movement in her life.

If this was a one off occasion then it wouldn't bother me too much. This however is not a one time thing. She is the flagship amongst some negative people I know who suffer from a victim mentality.

It is painful to watch and impossible to talk to her about because all she'd see is more people raining on her parade. To be honest, if she read this, she wouldn't even know I meant her. *sigh*

There is a simple formula I have for life...

People who look outward for the cause of all their problems will never fix the real cause which is most often their approach to life. Instead they will blame others.

People who look inward for cause and try to improve who they are or what their choices are (including who they allow in their lives) will become better people. They will do so because they realise that you can't change how others act towards or around you but you can change how you deal with them and their effects.

Luckily, her and I are no longer Facebook friends. I could only stand it for so long. Having been at this point once in my life, I realised that I wasn't so much wrong about who had made my life miserable but blaming him brought me no closure. It didn't allow me to move forward.

I often think of this quote and hope others actually listen and let things people have done to them go. It is the only way to take power away from the person who hurt you and set yourself free.

“When you hold resentment toward another, you are bound to that person or condition by an emotional link that is stronger than steel. Forgiveness is the only way to dissolve that link and get free.”  --Catherine Ponder

Saturday 13 April 2013

The most she will do is throw shadows at you

Once there was a mountain. It had always been what it was and would always be.

Mountains do grow and change with the weather, over the ages. Inside, they may be holding an upset tummy of molten rock or just be solid all the way through. Apart from the world breaking open beneath them, nothing phases a mountain. It always has been what it is and will always be.

Once there was a tornado. It had been other things prior to being a tornado and would most likely be something else in the future.

Tornadoes change so often and without warning that it is best to describe what stays most constant about them. There is the air bit. It is tumultuous. It is swirly whirly. It is looking for something but it has no idea what that actually is. It is still looking. Uplifting houses and breaking so permanent roads and throwing stuff around.

Once a tornado met a mountain. A tornado, mid-mix. A mountain, mid-consistency.

Now, tornadoes and mountains are not meant for each other no matter how much each tries. No matter how sincere the effort. No matter how noble the intent.

This tornado burst on to the scene with the immense energy that only a tornado has. There is no off button. There is no volume button. Buttons are for controlling things. Tornadoes don't have buttons.

The stoic mountain saw the destructive tornado arrive. They both appreciated that the other had amazing talents and latent power inside them. They both saw the merits of the other that would be good habits to adopt themselves. They became friends.

The problem with mountains (according to tornadoes) is that they move at a pace that challenges a snail but frustrates a tornado. And the problem with tornadoes (according to mountains) is that you can't get a tornado to maintain consistency long enough to get a message across.

The tornado and the mountain became great friends. They seemed for a while to find a stable middle ground.

The thing with tornadoes is that a stable middle ground seems an anti-pattern and they start to spin faster trying to re-centre until there is little method or control. This scares mountains. They see the destabilisation and plant their feet so as not to be moved by anything but damn time.

The thing is, a tornado will re-centre on their very own if they are given the time. Mountains have nothing but time. The only problem is when a mountain doesn't have the time to wait for the tornado.

Not that tornadoes aren't the problem in the first place.

So two beautiful, natural and wonderful friends lose each other.

They both feel the loss.

The mountain sees the tornado spin and smiles at the beauty of it in full flight.

The tornado sees the mountain as consistent as ever and closes it's eyes and just spins, hoping that it won't always be so painful.

Everything is as it was before. The mountain keeps being the mountain that it always was and always will be. The tornado throws a house at a shopping mall and wonders when it will help. Then the tornado wonders if being a cyclone might be better and sets plans in motion to change.

The world keeps spinning, unaffected.

Monday 1 April 2013

To be

I always wanted to write things as much as I wanted to read them. When I was 15 years old, I spent a week at the NT News (one of the worst newspapers in Australia but my local) on work experience as a mini-journalist. That title I assigned myself. It taught me nothing of writing but a lot about advertising and entertainment.

None of what I wrote when I was young was written for anyone but me. The audience was me and at most my mother.

That meant I could be creative, crazy and chaotic without fear of judgement. A nice idea.

Then I started a blog and tried to write things that interested me but I thought would also interest other people. Maybe a little judgement and some learning. A nice idea.

What I realised very late was that it didn't matter what I wrote or who I wrote it for if the reason I was writing was to improve. All that ever mattered was that I wrote and wrote and wrote until I found my voice.

Wrote until the voice in words on a screen or paper sounded like the voice in my head.

Finding your voice online is like finding your voice on stage or on camera. It is about being yourself and not trying to sound like someone else. Of course, acting and fiction may be different but there is still a style that is yours. Part of you. Your essence.

So I keep writing so that it still sounds like me. And I keep sounding like me so I can keep writing.

Sunday 17 March 2013


For a few years in my life recently, I would spend a lot of time distracting myself with activities and people so that I wouldn't have to think about all the awful stuff that had been my past life.

I made friends and spent wonderful moments with them. I still do.

I tried hobbies and developed life long skills that have extended who I am by leaps and bounds.

I read a few books and now have a library in my head and so many more to read.

The other day while waiting for some close friends to turn up to drinks at the Hyatt Graden Moet Bar, I was left with some time to myself. They were all about 30 minutes late and as usual, I was on time or early as usual.

I grabbed a glass of bubbly, a glass of water and then spent 25 minutes setting up my new phone that work gave me.

When everyone turned up, I was happy to show off my new phone and get right back in to people time.

The revealing moment though was that it is no longer about distracting myself from the horrors of reliving the past in my head. The moments alone are no longer lonely. I don't need to be distracted.

This is a huge thing. A big realisation. A giant step forward for Mana-kind.

Saturday 9 March 2013

A little bit of egg

I think it is funny that people think I am going to fall apart every time I say something crap happened in my life. One thing you should understand about me is that I'm an extrovert and articulating my thoughts lets me process them. That is why I write and talk and then feel better about it all.

Yes, I once fell apart so badly that I thought I would never put myself together and go down in the annals of history as another Humpty Dumpty. But I was sick then and am not now. Maybe Humpty was just depressed. I mean seriously, who sits on a wall when they are oddly shaped and unsuited for such things?

Like I always say and do, participate and take chances but never put so much of yourself in to anything that if it fails you will be lost. Life is far too short for long term sulking. Life is wonderful :)

Saturday 9 February 2013

6 months later

She had been in town for well over a year now and was a people collector. She had this magnetism that sucked people in and then she sealed it with her charm and that amazing smile. As he rounded the railing towards the down escalator, she caught his eye. It wasn't the way that a pretty girl catches a man's eye. No, it was the way you see someone in the corner of your eye and do a double take because you recognise them. This was an instant, faster than a blink of an eye. And the way he recognised her was different to running in to a friend. Time seemed to slow down. He remembered the way she smells. The way she'd breathe on his neck when she massaged his shoulders.

He didn't miss a step and strode on to the escalator.

She was air kissing a friend hello as she gave a wink and waved another goodbye. He didn't know if they were friends or colleagues or acquaintances? She had this outward consistency with people. The smile similar in every case. The message sincere, all the way up to her eyes. He never knew how she had the energy to give that to every person she came across. He did too but he kept the number of people much lower. Much much lower.

Before he was half way down the escalator, she had twirled around on those ridiculously high heels and was headed for the exit. There was a bounce in her step. He remembered that playful gait that always resulted in her bumping against him as she talked without a breath about many things, when they went for walks. He knew when she was happy. She was right now.

There was a day more than a year ago when he saw a her walking in the distance and he pulled up next to her in her stiletto over the knee boots and said "nice shoes" in his most casual voice. She didn't smile but said "hello" that time. He wondered what she would say this time. Much more had passed under the bridge since then. He left her. She had tried to convince him to stay but he left her anyway.

As he reached the bottom of the escalator and stepped off, he watched her happily skip away.

Sunday 3 February 2013


I collect memories of moments, to tell you at the end of the day.

There is no end of the day with you there anymore to hear me tell them.

I just keep collecting them.

Friday 4 January 2013

Alternate Universe Theory

The other day, I posted this on facebook...

The world seems a little odd when I'm the emotionally stable one in a relationship or the less dramatic friend in a friendship or the person less likely to pike on an appointment.
It is possible that I have entered an alternate universe.

... and boy, does it feel true.

There was a massive revelation to myself at this point. It was that every time some speed bump happens in life, I've been looking to myself as the cause. Always wondering what I did wrong this time and searching for a way to fix it.

The revelation is that I am not often the cause of the drama these days. I have my moments. I'll always be the centre of some kind of attention but now I realise that others cause it too. Not just me or at least not me every single time.

What a fantastic way to start the year. Yes, sometimes I am a right diva. No, I am not always the troubled soul.

Yay, me!

Wednesday 2 January 2013

I don't draw the curtain

It is probably best I live on the top floor of my eight story building because I never draw the curtains closed. I have never really seen the point to it.

In the day, I like the cleansing sunlight. In the night, I like the calming dark. The dawn brings me slowly to wake and the dusk shares a glass of wine.

Maybe my opposing neighbours know too much about me. Maybe. Who cares?

Does it indicate something about a person when they like to control what is let in and what is kept out?

Even if no one ever looks in due to fences or trees or lack of interest. Maybe the closing is to commit to complete dark or complete light. A binary setting. A semaphore even, with the half open - half closed option.

Then there are those see through curtains that let you leave the curtain open but cut the insight. What does that mean. Is that making it all about hiding or is it all about light?

Maybe curtains aren't the eyes to the soul but I'm starting to think that it is reflective of how much some are willing to share and how much some couldn't care less.

I don't draw the curtains.

Some love never dies


When I left home, I went to you. I remember that you weren't always cold. There were nights when you were so warm that neither of us slept a wink.

In 2006 we were at our happiest. My 30th birthday. Dancing lessons. A wedding. So many friends.

And then something broke.

Sydney came between us. My depression didn't help. You weren't there for me but then again... maybe I left you and that added to me breaking. You were always there. I mean, you existed but we were not together. Both alive and breathing but not together. Maybe there were days when we saw each other again or reconnected. Hell! There were entire weekends. It didn't stop the separation though.

When it got bad, I felt you had gone forever and that nothing could ever change the memories that then pained me so much. My escape to Darwin or my exile to the north was necessary. You were thousands of miles away and didn't so much as show you cared.

I spoke of other loves, of Darwin and Sydney and places that you weren't.

In 2011, when I thought I'd healed, I ventured back to the start. To that cold place. Us. It was not until 2012 that the memories were rewritten and you no longer made me cry. In fact, I could think of you and smile.

Sometimes I still hate you. Sometimes I still can't stand how cold you get. Sometimes I smile because we knew each other so well and that is coming back.

Thank you for coming back in to my life.

Thank you, Canberra. I am glad I am here and that we are back together.

Yours for now,

Tuesday 1 January 2013

The Dragons Meet

Yes, today is the first day of 2013. A new year.

We are however still in the Chinese year of the Water Dragon.

I was born in the August, 1976. That is the year of the Fire Dragon. It is an extremely lucky sign to be born under. Every 12 years, there is a year of the Dragon and I amuse myself with how lucky I will be that year.

Now, I'm not saying I believe that I am one of twelve types of people. Leos never believe in that stuff :)

What I am saying is that since I believe it is my year and that my year will be full of luck, that gives me a positive view of the year. Maybe I subconsciously approach it in a different way that makes me a little bolder (yes, it is possible). Then I boldly go where no Mana has gone before.

As a Fire Dragon in the year of the Water Dragon, I knew it would get steamy and it did.

The year was full of winning moments. There was so much propulsion that many things happened that I had to stop and take in later.

Today as I sat in the Jolly Mont Centre waiting with a good friend catching a Murray's bus home after visiting me in Canberra, I joked about being easily amused by silly jokes and small wins. I said that I would always be happy because it didn't take much to make me so.

That is a key to happiness. Not needing something giant or overly important or drop dead hilarious to make your day. Laughing at myself and wonderful little moments is a sign that this dragon has enjoyed the steamy year.

In the upcoming year of the Water Snake, I shall let my Fire Dragon embrace the eel like year which is said to be the best year in which to start again.

I choose to start a new chapter and make it the best one so far.

Bring it!