it’s late and I can tend to wax lyrical when I’m tired, but I need to get something out of my head that has been kicking around in there for some time.
I’m not sure it will come out how I want it to, and I’m certainly not one to spend any time crafting what I write because as soon as I do that I stop writing at all. So sorry if what follows seems clunky, or if my spelling is bad, grammar questionable, generalisations gratuitous and metaphors mixed. So long as you get the gist…
Firstly, this blogging thing is extraordinary. Particularly for women.
You see, many of us children of the Boomers – particularly women – were sold the ultimate pup that we could have it all. We could have a well paid, highly rewarding on all levels job as well as having a family and a life.
What a crock.
Instead, we have a cohort of women expected to have it all. And somewhere in there, that same cohort of women are just trying to get through the day, the week, the month and years without doing too much damage to anyone except probably their own liver and maybe some other internal organs.
I saw my shrink yesterday and he said I had to stop viewing my world in terms of absolutes (we talked on this particularly in regards to Oscar – that I have to give away notions of good/bad, success/failure – and instead, view him and his life as a work in progress. This was hugely liberating let me just say) and in particular, that the traditional notion of a primary breadwinner going off to work each day and a fulltime homemaker are just not applicable any more.
Life is messy.
It won’t ever be perfect.
That it’s always a juggle, a hodge podge if you will.
And you know what? That is alright.
Yet every day I know we all struggle with the decisions we make as parents, the relationships we have at work, the direction or lack thereof in our careers, the pressures of money – all that as all we try to do is simply matter. To make a difference in some small way each and every day.
But every day I feel like I fall so short of doing that it can bring on a desolation so vast and cavernous I am almost immobilised.
Because you see, in trying to do all that comes exhaustion and a feeling of isolation. Comes that weight-of-the-world kind of feeling that no matter how hard you shake, does not budge.
Throw into that mix a sense of the world around you and a deep deep concern for where the very fabric that makes your country what it is is at, or events in the world that can only be reacted to with despair, horror or bewilderment – and you have a pretty strung out, world weary, anxious populace.
And to me, I don’t know, that just doesn’t seem right.
Today I was part of something that brought about a change. That reversed a decision that was wrong. And I’ve been surprised by my reaction. I should be elated. I should be cheering. But instead, simply put, my stores of quiet fortitude have been restored.
But underlying that was a new friendship that was forged with another woman.
Another woman just trying to matter and make a difference.
And you see, Bec and I had a chat today that covered many things, from being a parent, to a wife, to a worker to just us.
And – as happens every now and then – I saw once more what remarkable creatures we are.
Even when we were sold a pup of being able to have it all – we still make the best of it that we can.
We beat ourselves up along the way. Badly.
We don’t do enough things for ourselves to keep the engine well oiled and when we do we feel guilty for it.
But every now and then we buy the highly impractical yet gorgeous shoes. Or handbag. Or underwear. Or truffle oil.
Our hearts break at missing the school concert or not being there to pick the kids up from school or drop them off for that matter. But we lie in bed with them at night reading stories, making stories up, and singing them to sleep.
We forget that in the eyes of these children, no matter how badly we think we’re doing, they just see their Mum.
And we all know the infinite comfort – safety – that comes from that.
Constantly of late I have the passage from The Great Gatsby running round in my head:
…tomorrow we will run faster, stretch out our arms further…And one fine morning –
So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past.
Boats against the current.
And that brings me back to this blogging caper. The ultimate mothers group, even if you don’t have any kids. Even if you’re a bloke.
Because you see, you can have a really shitty day, a bad week, an arduous task, a heavy heart and yet, you can read a post by someone else that lifts your spirits so high suddenly all is not lost.
I know we all have friends around us. But sometimes it’s hard to call upon them when you know they’re fighting their own demons or simply living their own lives. For example I didn’t ring anyone about getting robbed yesterday. I mean – what do you say? and why? what was I looking for? No one was going to take the pain away, I just wanted it out there.
So here I stand. In a little part of a weird world with a wonderful friend by my side. Where we write about the stupid, the heartbreaking, the inane and the beautiful. Where we can carry each other, or distract, comfort or just make laugh.
And that, it a truly wonderful thing.
That is all.