bliss list

SkinkIt really hasn’t been the easiest start to the year. With all the “2012” hype, talk of positive energy shifts, releasing of the old and a new fresh way of being circulating around the consciousness-vine, my felt-experience has actually been closer to that of a bedraggled river rat clinging to a twig as the rapids swirl chaotically around me.

So it was brilliant timing that Liv Lane’s Little Bliss List happened across my path. Is there any better way to centre, re-open your heart and remember how perfect each moment in this life is, than remembering to be grateful?

So these are the things that have made me so happy this week:

Grandmas verandah

1. Skinks. Each morning as I walk down the stairs from my apartment, they dart across my path. My grandmother hated them. She was a country girl and was terrified of them scurrying inside the house. When we were kids and visited grandma and grandpa every weekend, I used to sit on their wooden verandah and watch them duck and dive down the crevices of the the brick steps (the skinks, not grandma and grandpa). Mum grew up hating them too. I love them. They remind me of grandma and her wooden verandah in the late afternoon sun. Sorry grandma one of my happiest memories was one of your worst!

Love Tilly Divine2. Sydney Small Bars and my girlfriends who frequent them with me. No, I’m not an alcoholic. But after two years of intense study and an exceptionally restricted social life (do toilet breaks count as a social life??), I’ve just discovered Small Bars. These dens of heaven, hosting a max of about 20 people, supply sumptuous French and Italian wines by the glass to slowly sip on, whilst eating divinely prepared morsels of kingfish sashimi or perfectly baked bites of roast potato in rosemary and sea salt or .. oh you get the drift. I like beautiful things (like yummy wine). And I like spiritual things. And as I’ve sat at 2 different small bars, with 2 different girlfriends, over 2 incredible and divinely inspired conversations, over 2 incredible and divinely inspired glasses of pino gris, I’ve realised how spirituality can come in all shapes and sizes. Some like crushed purple velvet, some like crystals, I like moments of authentic bliss with the best friends in the world in rustic, back-alley wine bars.

Harbord Diggers3. Training. It’s only a recent discovery, but it turns out I enjoy the monotony of the elliptical trainer. I’ve just started running for about an hour most days. And because I live in my head, it is a new and precious form of physical meditation for me. This is the view from my gym. How could you not become addicted to this?

sms4. A text message. It was from a new friend. I’d sent a message asking if he’d like to go for a drink next week (OK, no really, I’m *not* an alcoholic!!) and his reply simply said, “ok, yes, please!!!xx”. How lovely to openly express excitement. It made me smile a big smile.

So over this past week, what have been your unbridled moments of joy? Would love to hear them x

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The Mars/Venus myth

Boy and girl hugging

I come from a large family, being the youngest of 6. And with my only other ‘xx-chromosome’ buddy being 11 years older than me, my world revolved mainly around my 4 brothers, the “boys” as they were collectively known. “Muuuum, boys are fighting, “ “Muuuum, boys won’t let me in,” “Muuuum, boys just flushed my head down the toilet…” Ah, good times.

However, several years ago I remember mum reminiscing about having our family and whilst all I knew of the “boys” was who could rumble the other into a headlock submission the fastest, she remembered back to their toddler-hood and mused, “Little girls, well they’re cute and affectionate, but little boys … ooh, there is nothing more beautiful than a little boy who wants a cuddle.”

This has played on my mind for a long time.

Because my experience of men hasn’t always been great. And my experience of my own self and self worth hasn’t always been great. And I’ve often thrown the two together, in a cause-and-effect way, to come out with the equation “I’m less than because men are greater than.” And this is precisely what I created throughout my life.

Yet the quest for my own holy grail has always been the archetypal feminine longing – to find that “little boy” in a man. And no, I don’t mean the immature little boy, we don’t need any more of that in the world. I mean to find the mature, i.e. the vulnerable in a man. To find the truest baring of his unadorned self. Because it’s true, women want strong men. What men often don’t get, ironically, is that vulnerability is our greatest strength.

As much as I want to support women in their journey of worth and empowerment and loving the what-is, I want to foster and encourage and support men who are willing to operate from a place of integrity and transparency. I’d love to live alongside men who can show their weaknesses in the moment and not shut down or run away right at the instant of breakthrough.

Big ask.

And it’s a big ask because, well because women are very good at beating down men at every opportunity. We’re very good at blaming them for being unemotional and unthinking and uncaring. We want them to be our rock and our strength, yet in the same breath, we laugh at them for being weak and unmanly when they do expose a vulnerable side. We want a warrior, hmmm but a sensitive warrior, but not *that* sensitive (‘cause that’s just woosy). See the problem? We can be just as bitchy and insensitive as men can be distant and uncaring. And perhaps this is where the Mars/Venus thing plays out, when we operate from this surface, reactionary place. But if we look deeper …

In my own journey of where and how I fit in this world, I’ve realised the truth behind mum’s words, that as little girls and boys, we are all vulnerable. And we all still hold that vulnerability deep within us. We all still want a cuddle. We want to be held, and heard, and understood and acknowledged and still be free enough, once the universe has kissed it better, to continue on our soul-guided journey in the knowledge we will always be supported, but not contained or restrained by another.

I saw this video years ago and I watched it again yesterday. It still breaks my heart. Link below. Warning, the content may be uncomfortable for some (I hear nervous giggles already), and it contains nudity.

My Penis and I

The courage this man, Lawrence Barraclough @lawrencebtv, shows in making it just reiterates how much we all repress about ourselves. How unhappy so many of us are with who we are. How all of us compare and judge and try to fit in with the world and most importantly, how all of us are hiding some kind of wound which affects our behaviour as adults. Deep down, we’re not that different. We all crave a cuddle and yearn to hear we’re ok, exactly as we are. Yes, men too.

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It’s time to stop the beatup

As I type here at my laptop, telly on in the background on low volume, something is irking me. I mean, it’s really grating on me. And it’s grating on me more than the incessant building work that’s going on in the apartment across from me (as well as in the adjacent block … it’s not a very peaceful morning…)

I look up and see the perkiest of perky woman on one of the morning shows, busting to tell me about the latest super-fast-amazingly-incredible fullness shake!! (I have to use exclamation marks to portray precisely how excitable this woman is). In fact, it’s so impressive, I’m told, it’s “JUST LIKE a LAPBAND!!!!!” (she’s really excited now).

And as I’m looking at her with a definite quizzical “WTF are you on about woman?” expression, it occurs to me how angry I am at this pathetic excuse of a woman!!! (now I have to use exclamation marks to portray precisely how *annoyed* I am).

This kind of media is constant, it’s like a dull drone (slightly louder than the dull drone of a builder’s electric drill so my research has proven*). But it’s everywhere. It’s on in the background as telecommercials, it’s on in the background as advertorials and advertisements in our magazines, it’s on in the background of our heads as we put our 11 year old daughter on a diet of grapes-only for 2 whole days so she can fit into a certain dress size (Dr Phil episode yesterday .. the dangers of being on holidays and deciding on an ‘at home’ day).

And so here is this woman banging on about how awesome “lapband-in-a-shake” is to lose weight, get slim, drop dress sizes, be lovable. Yes, that’s what the real message is. Lose weight so you can be attractive and someone will love you. Not prioritise your diet so you can be vibrant, healthy, happy, nourish your brain cells and muscle cells properly so they can perform at their optimum, but lose weight to be thin. That’s what all good advertisers know to be the feminine achilles heel.

I’m so angry at how all-pervading this message is in our society, aimed very pointedly at women. And as hard as this is to admit, I’m angry at women for lapping it up, hook line and sinker. And I’m angry that in the past, I’ve been one of them.

So it’s time we as women (and men) put a stop to this garbage. And the first step is to stop believing it. Stop buying into it. Start focussing on our health – mentally, emotionally, spiritually as well as physically – and stop thinking we are so fundamentally flawed because we have fat cells which create hips and thighs and cellulite. That is who we are ladies, don’t you think it’s about time we embraced our truth?

And then I read a most beautiful quote by Geneen Roth which said “The obsession will end when you love yourself enough to stop hurting yourself. Who doesn’t want to take care of what they love?”

Who doesn’t indeed.

*Anecdotal evidence only. No actual research has been conducted.
Images courtesy of squidoo.com

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This little quirk

Hello fellow quirkees,

This is my foray into the world of blogging and it’s come about due to my own long-held struggles with, well basically, accepting myself for me – 100% me. I’ve always looked to others as ‘better,’ ‘prettier,’ and ‘more capable,’ and have essentially constructed a fairly below-par estimation of myself. A job well done I must say, but one whose ultimate aim is a pretty poor way of spending my precious time on this earth.

Now, not one to blow my own horn .. will you take a look at the photo above?! I mean seriously, how cute is this little wisp of creation? How could this goggle-eyed, cozzie-dishevelled, fluorescent-white, free and happy little quirk of nature ever decide to devote her entire life to comparing, judging and punishing herself, physically, mentally and emotionally for not living up to some mythic ideal of what she was supposed to act like; to look like; to be. Heartbreaking.

And for most of my life, I’ve been under the misguided belief that I was the only one, and more than that, if such lack of worth did extend to the greater community, it was only the domain of women. And truly, women bear this crazy belief on a laaaaarge large scale (my frustration at *why* women accept this view of ‘less than’ so readily is content for another post). However, it’s been through my own process of growth/seeking/transformation/call it what you will, that I’ve pulled my perspective up and out and have realised some of the most beautiful men on the plant that have graced me with their presence in this life are just as wounded and damaged as I am (yes, am. I’d like it to be ‘was’, but the remnants still hold a strong grip and this is a life journey after all). And every negative experience I’ve had in being treated in a less than loving way with men is really down to the fact that men have the same crumby self esteem or ability to stand strong in themselves as we do! Revelation!!

Little boys are told to ‘man up’ just as much as little girls are pandered to; teenage boys are taught to treat girls with little respect and know that to be cool is to follow the crowd just as much as teenage girls (well, actually it’s even younger, adopted by tweens now) learn their worth is their body .. sex it up and you’ll be accepted; the shorter, the tighter, the better.

No wonder we’re all terrified of being ourselves when our peers/marketing/media’s guiding compass is so off target. No wonder we’re all operating so inauthentically. We’ve bought into an inauthentic definition of what it is to be human.

So, it is my purpose in this part self-journal/part evolutionary tool to stop. To stop the crazy barrage of misguided and media-self-serving imagery telling us who we are and instead, encourage all of us to go inwards and find our own inner compass. I’d love for us all to tweeze out, recognise and celebrate our own quirks of nature; those things that make us so inextricably us and to permit and energise us to love and express our authenticity in every situation.

I hope you join me on this journey of self-discovery .. it’s always so much easier to do the scary stuff with friends🙂

 

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