Bold

When I was 17 I got fed up with my first love so I dumped him

When I was 18 , I couldn’t wait to leave home , so I went far away to Uni.

When I was 20 I wanted to get out of London and escape so I left to go work in the Canaries

When I was 25 I wanted a baby so I got pregnant

When I was 30 I decided that my obsessional reliance on medication for anxiety was not what I wanted and I threw them in a public bin

When I was 33 I decided I wanted a career so I went back to Uni

When I was 35 I wanted a dog . So I brought one

When I was 39 , I decided I wanted to be In control of my destiny so I slowly took back the reins

When I was 41 I decided I didn’t believe in a Christian God and I gave up my religion

When I was 43, I Decided I had enough of my job and I got a new one.

Now I’m 44. I know it’s going to be a fucking great year and it will be.

The strangest birthday

I’ve had 43 and 1/2 birthdays. Today is the strangest birthday , full of emotion , sensory delights & a winter swim.

I thought it might be a good idea to go away with my daughter for our birthday , somewhat inconveniently for both of us , she burst into my world on my 30th birthday , some 14 years ago.

So , I booked to bring us to Benidorm , the great bustling town just north of the Spanish city of Alicante. It has a reputation for being a rather British Chavvy place to come , but this does it an injustice. It has a huge expanse of sandy beach with crystal blue seas , it’s high rise scenery is oddly comforting and the town itself is packed full of Spanish and English tourists alike. It is sensory chaos.

So , we wake up this morning after a late night descent into Alicante airport. The rather unsettling ride down Spanish motorways in the dark never ceases to terrify me , the room we were allocated is in dire need of many many things , but ultimately , the bed is divine so I don’t care about the astonishing lack of plugs , the peeling bath which blocks the plug hole & the view onto someone else’s window ..

We go for breakfast , which like the room has its merits but could do with an injection of love and hot eggs.

Then my daughter says she doesn’t want to go and explore , she doesn’t feel that well and wants to lay in our tired vistaless room and stare mindlessly at her computer like she has done for the previous 2 years of her short time on this earth. Fair enough , I think and take the opportunity to go off and explore alone. Quite a treat if I’m frank.

Now , what I didn’t expect was regular washes of nostalgia , the Spanish smells , churros , coffee , street foods , bringing back many memories of a different life time , once lived. I treat myself to new clothes , listen to Spanish beach choir & delight in the Spanish children , who are always dressed in the most exquisite clothes .

My daughter does not want to come for lunch either. At this point I start to become quite tearful. I’m already missing my husband , I’m feeling bad that she isn’t enjoying her birthday , I’m disappointed that it isn’t the birthday I wanted . I ask her why we bothered to come when she says that she can’t understand why I want to go out all the time!

So I end up going back out again, I’m desperate to taste a tapas again and soak up the atmosphere that this town is bursting with. I head for the well – known tapas alley , away from British stains , which pepper spanish resorts. But when I find a place to sit in the bustling alley , I find myself unable to hold back vicious tears of sadness. Overwhelmed by loneliness when all around me are together I have to shoo the waiter away , as I am unable to speak!

Eventually I regain my composure, determined to enjoy my time here. I order my desired “ensalada rusa” and ” vino tinto ” . I know I have been noticed but I don’t care.

When I leave the waiter tells me that the men on the other table have paid for my drinks and I cry again . And thank them. Part of me wants to tell them it’s my birthday but i refrain and head down to the beach and enjoy a bracing swim In the November Atlantic . I buy more things for myself and a lovely scarf for my friend. As I write I have had a bath and given my daughter some medicine and am optimistic that she might Join me for a drink tonight! There are some Fiestas on in Benidorm and I would love to absorb some of that Spanish energy that alights their cities at Fiesta time.

So the birthday isn’t complete . But it’s definitely been different .

What are you avoiding due to fear?

This was a rhetorical question asked by someone in my therapy group a long time ago.   He was describing a bizarre scene where a friend of his was trying to ‘ cure ‘  him of his OCD.    He was fastidious about raw meat ,  particularly chicken.   His friend proceeded to lick a raw chicken breast to prove that he would’t get ill and that in fact the whole  bacteria tale was over – played.   His friend was indeed fine and it left him with the question in his mind ,   ‘  what am I not doing because of fear   –   what is fear stopping me from doing ?  ‘  .      I ponder upon this ,   as I recently changed my job.    A job I loved ,  a team I couldn’t imagine not being with everyday .      In fact , when we imagined moving away to the country ,   my job was one of those things that anchored me back from the dream.      Yet ,   I left ,  not because I was moving area ,   but because  a position came up   and I applied .   I was in a habit of doing  this occasionally,   usually for something that I was unlikely to be listed for , due to lack of experience and  so  a kind of cowardly application ,  safe in the knowledge that it wouldn’t go anywhere…   However,  this job,  perhaps ,  I did have what they were looking for and  I bloody got the job!

Such a powerful thing in my life.    To leave ,  to go ,  to mourn,   to transition and be troubled by doubts and regrets and to come out the other side , 2 months later ,  knowing that the decision was actually right ,  good and fruitful.    Yet,  I could  have easily stayed ,     for years ,  like a few of the team members that I left.   Safe .     But it was fear that was holding me back  .  Fear of the wrong decision ,  fear of not being the expert , fear of not being needed.   But I feel set free.    There are certain things that only change and being brave can shift in you .

Reflecting ,   on my life,    Bravery is one of my attributes.    I have always been brave.    But complacency can creep in without you knowing.   You have to keep fresh ,   push yourself ,  challenge your ideas and reasons for things.   Otherwise,  you stop .   And stopping

in itself is relatively harmless.    But it also means that stagnation can set in.

But change also makes you intolerant of other areas of your life , where perhaps you thought you were happy and you aren’t. It can be a catalyst ,  in those areas where change will be difficult . Where those cobwebs have been building ,  where the darkness is festering .    What do you do then?   When that feeling of disquiet becomes a loud clanging in your mind.  But it feels too messy , too painful to quell.

What then?

white chicken on a concrete pavement
Photo by Luke Barkhuizen on Pexels.com

Shame and the Shadow self.

I have really managed to get to the root of something tonight.    I was reading  Lo’s Book on Emotional Sensitivity and there was a part about delving into your shadow self,   shadow work has been something that I have wanted to work on for a while and I never really knew how to begin or what to do .  I yearned for a manual and exercises to do.  I like structure !

Anyway,   I was trying to get to grips with my irritation at my mother,    why do simple things get to me so much    Why when she goes shopping and leaves it all out for the world to see do I want to hurl it across the kitchen.  Why do I doggedly refuse to put it away and then cave in  due to my indescribable need for order.  So I worked it all out on my dog walk ,  summoning all the higher powers in my life to help me.   I realised that this example and others that I searched the realms of my mind for ,  opened up the realisation that my dark shadows consist of neediness, self righteousness , selfishness and an insatiable desire for recognition.  The irritation I feel at others,  is often a reflection of what I dislike in myself .  But this dislike is inextricably linked to my girl self ,  who was often told ‘ you’re too spoilt  , calm down , you’re too much ‘  .      So that shame learnt at an early age is triggered by this irritation ,   which until now ,  was in the dark recesses  of my mind.    That shame was soothed by food ,  then as the years went by , drugs,  alcohol , shopping.  You name it .   Which is why  I so often  struggle to manage myself ,  be healthy ,   be self controlled.   The shame is so guttural and innate until today ,   just for today I guess,  the start of acceptance.

silhouette of girl during night time painting
Photo by Suvan Chowdhury on Pexels.com

I can’t be the woman I am ; compassionate ,  funny ,  kind ,   authentic , honest, warm and humble ,  without the darkness that provides the opposing nature.   There are no trees without sun and rain ,    no  joy without sorrow,    no breath without air.   So  , by accepting my desperate need for attention  , love and recognition I am embracing my full self ,  which encompasses light and dark ,  reflecting my place in this collective consciousness .

So , the shopping left on the side,  represents my envy at others who too desire this.   If we don’t recognise our envy ,  we project it back out in passive aggressive actions.   Realising this   ,   peace descended on my soul.   My darkness is me ,   it has to be loved and embraced.  It won’t heal without light.  As I sat in the sun today ,  I felt a sense of healing ,   my body loves the sun,  it reaps rewards from its energy and rays,   my nails  grow , my skins glows,   I feel alive.    This is reflected so powerfully in my emotional being.     Just like the song by Leonard Cohen ,   ”  there is a crack in everything , that’s how the light shines in ” .    My cracks need attention   🙂

 

 

The world cover little girls in shame

SHAMED GIRLS

Fury inside. She just wants to BE.

Be naked . Alive.

Oppressed by insidious worldly designs ;

Too loud , too clumsy , too wild.

Moment by Moment the essence of girl

Is torn aside.

Patched up with shame.

The self gets covered .

Denied the impulses , the drives – believing the world’s message.

Potions of rose petals , tightly wrapped posies of lavender and herbs , lost in the fabric of time

Ice cream boxes , housing mini worlds for creatures , slung aside in the gutter.

The wild girl unable to blossom.

Told . No.

Running free in knickers is not permitted.

The girl gets lost and fights her way through

Adolescence.

Crippled now in shame.

Food soothes an angry soul.

It fills the void.

The Pain Of Shame.

Inability to express , no powerful crone to guide & bring into the light .

Just a string of broken women with no tools. Or spells .

So many lost wild girls.

Screaming inside.

Escape takes time. To find the divine inside

Awareness is now mine to behold and

The magic can restore

The beckoning of the wild girl begins –

Cut her reins , set her free . To BE.

This is Me .

I sense that she awaits me when the light comes to my end…

When I was 3 ,   my mother lost her mother,  unexpectedly .    Unfortunately ,   my Grandmother lived in London,   and my father had relocated us to deepest Devon some few years earlier when I was a baby.     The memories of this time escape my mind,    however,    I am left with lots of emotion.     I don’t remember my grandmother,   as I scan the recesses of my mind,  desperate for a snippet of something,   a kiss,   a story ,   a smell ,   something tangible that belongs to me,   I cannot recollect a thing.    From stories that my brothers tell  ,  and photographs,   my Grandmother was a tall ,  slender woman , gregarious and compassionate , with a temper and a dark past.    She was an alcoholic, but that never taints the memories of her ,  the picture that is painted is one of warm loveliness   and I mourn my inability to mourn.     I resent that of all of her grandchildren ,  I was the youngest,   the only girl and the only one to have been left with nothing to have of her.     I romanticise and I imagine with much truth ,   that she adored me , her only granddaughter,    yet,  we were whisked away to the countryside and so she also didn’t get to see us much.    Her upbringing was pretty tough ,   born in Ireland ,   both parents died when her and her siblings were very young, somehow ending up with an Aunt in India who also died,   she ended up in an orphanage in India,  run by nasty fucking nuns,  who beat her.    Trauma followed her ,    it’s no surprise that she found alcohol to cope with all that pain .      She married my Grandfather who was a Major in the British army out in India,    they lived the high life!  I yearn to know her,  to be able to just have an afternoon with her.     I believe she leaves a hole in my psyche ,   a dark hole that swirls around in my subconscious,   a hole made bigger by my Mother’s grief.    As a 3 year old , I believed that I would have been deeply affected by my mother’s sorrow.   My Grandmother died on Mother’s Day.   A sunday.     My mother  had to come back down to Devon to sort her family out,   and missed the passing of her mother.    I cannot talk about these things with my mother.     The sorrow that overtakes me ,   I know would trigger an even deeper sorrow in my mother and I just cannot approach that pain and intimacy .    I don’t quite know what to do with these unplumbed fragments of myself.   Tears easily come whenever I think about her ,   yet I don’t know her and I think this is what hurts the most.        I think my Grandmother lives deeply in my divine feminine history  ,  the sands of time which escape the confines of life and death.  She is still there,   how can I miss someone I rarely think about so much?       She resides deep in my soul and I long to touch her ,   I ache to share myself .      My brother told me stories about her ,    that she used to bring old waifs and strays home,   that she was so big hearted.  My mother says that she used to throw the best china at my Grandfather   and that they would have to put her to bed,  because she was so drunk.

Why did I miss out on her.   How can I fill what has been washed away ?    How do I break down the walls that stand between myself and my own mother,   walls of weird ,  unquantifiable fear and pain?

I sense that she awaits me when the light comes to my end.   IT will be her there to  greet me ,   whether a shadow ,  or a spirit,  who knows ,  but she will be there.        That’s all I have to hold onto . .

beautiful beauty blue bright
Photo by James Wheeler on Pexels.com

 

Freedom and fluidity

Last night I watched Dr Brian Cox presenting on the planet Jupiter.  It really made me feel small.  The world suddenly became tiny and insignificant.    Yet it also helped me to really start to fathom what I believe and consequently don’t believe.   I spent many years as a Christian.   A zealous one at points,   and I would have said with great passion when watching something like that , that it just reflected  the enormity and glory of God.     Now I just think that the way Jesus is portrayed makes a mockery of the whole thing.     That God would place such importance on a tiny speck of dust in a 1,000000 oceans of dust and expect that the entire human race would be able to centre themselves on that speck to reach salvation just makes me cringe,  if I am honest.   Jesus was an enlightened man.   Part of the great consciousness that we all are.    It’s just some of us are more enlightened than others.    And the ones that have twisted that message to create the concept of Hell are despicable to me now.  I didn’t come on here tonight to rant about religion.   I suppose there is part of me that remains angry ,  that for years after my father died,  I believed that he went to hell – or rather he wouldn’t be in heaven.  I perhaps never really accepted hell.    So , in a way ,  my grief got contorted ,   lost ,  and such a long time has passed that I can’t go back and do it in the way that I now feel would be cathartic.  Partly the anger is at myself for never really questioning anything  ,   blindly just accepting and conforming.   But , I don’t remain angry for long.    It’s what I needed at the time,   it also taught me much about my own spirituality and in a way , led me to where I am now.  Which is a place of freedom and fluidity.

lunar eclipse
Photo by Johannes Plenio on Pexels.com

 

40 something musings.

I got the job ,  I took the job.  I handed in my notice.

Goodness gracious me ,  it’s been such a time of change for me , since I turned 40 ,  there have been such huge shifts in many areas of my life.  I wouldn’t change being 40.    40 has brought freedom,  acceptance ,  untrodden depth in my marriage ,  huge shifts in where I see myself in this unfathomable place we call Earth.     I have connected myself together, going back in time to bring back and merge the little girl with the mature woman,   embracing and forgiving the young woman I was  for her stupidity.   I have become all the parts of me.   I am 44 later in the year.    Life feels like an expanse of time and yet a day till I die.    What can I do to embrace this place ,   that I live and that now sit as a woman.    A funny , compassionate , bright , sensitive woman.    I love all the parts of me. I love the dark parts that think dreadful thoughts and then laugh with myself.  I love that I am my own best friend.    I love that my husband is now my other best friend.   I can even forgive myself for taking up smoking again after 12 years .   This Is just something I need right now.   And a new job.   The courage to leave a place which has been a major factor in my growth.  A place which has taught me so many things about people and myself.     I take flight , with strong wings and a sad heart.    But know that the places that I will go ,  will only strengthen the woman that I have become.

silhouette of woman during sunset
Photo by Carl Newton on Pexels.com

Yearnings

As I sit on the brink of another weekend,   the desire to feel inspired by music , nature,   conversation , anything stimulating is apparent to me.     I have spent a long time hiding behind a veil of conformity and now that has lifted ,   it is as though my heart seeks to fill all the missing parts of me that got cut off.    Unaware of this prison that I was in ,  I  subconsciously avoided any part of life which might have shone light on the person locked away .   How did I get so lost?    What was missing within me that sought such containment?    What was I afraid of ?

I yearn to blog with dazzling brilliance about how I have learnt to accept and love myself.     But I can’t.

 

 

Will I make the shortlist?

I applied for a new job this week.    I admit I am deeply anxious at the thought of change, at leaving a safe, comfortable environment.   Another part of me is excited,   anticipating new things,   new lap top, new phone,  new places to cover ,  new concepts.    New team.   The unknown place  is where many  don’t  dare  to tread.   It would be very easy to stay.    There are lots of reasons to stay .   But then ,   how would I know where the path leads if I don’t go and have a look?

road street sign way
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Anyway  ,  I have to get shortlisted first.    I am reasonably confident about this ,  but hey ,  you never really do know.   Sometimes these NHS posts are already ear marked for somebody else.    They say it all depends on the interview and the points and the essential skills  ..  But I am not so sure.

So , now I wait.   I wait to see if I get selected.  Then I have to wait for the interview , then I have to wait to see if I get the job and then I have to wait to leave!    That’s a lot of waiting.    Normally that waiting is good for my soul.    Waiting for something often invigorates me ,  it ignites my desire to know.    So   ,  this is a good thing.     If I don’t get it , then I can settle comfortably back into my lovely role and quietly lick my wounds ,    if I do ,   well then I have some energy to thrive on for a while.  New energy .      I have a pattern of leaving somewhere as I become particularly proficient and able.    I like to think that this is because I need stimulation & challenge.   I do think this is true , but at the heart of it,  I wonder whether I like to be the baby.    The new one , who needs nurturing and care.  The one who doesn’t have to know everything.    This certainly becomes harder as you move up grades,   you have less scope for not knowing !

But it will be the second time that I leave a Team that I love.   And that will be hard.   But I have learnt that this precedes growth.    Actually ,   staying safely where I am for the last 4 years has been a good tactic.  One that I didn’t intend.  But I think it has granted me a certain kudos.   Longevity ,  cementation of skill.   But I don’t want to be boxed onto one shelf.    And there is always the safety of thought that you can whisper to yourself ,  ‘ you can always return ,  it would be easy enough ‘    but returning is never wise…    But hey ,   I , as usual get ahead of myself.    Let’s get shortlisted first huh?!