The sound of….

I just want it to stop raining for a day… or five!

I spent years living on a drought stricken farm, so it’s been beaten into me that you just don’t complain about the water falling from the sky… but… oh. my. god! I want a break… I feel like Noah. It just goes on… and on…. and not even a gentle patter. It’s a downpour. A never ending downpour. My drought born and raised kids are asking how the clouds can actually hold that much water. I’ve run out of answers…. The sound has become fingernails down a chalkboard. My shoulder blades have almost met with it all….

And the alarms around us keep being tripped. The rain? I hope so. I hope this is not ‘normal’ around here…. It’s not even a consistent alarm sound. It’s one of those irritating ones, designed to grab your attention. At least it’s morning this time – 3am two nights ago.

Needless to say, the kids are bickering… they go outside to play in the rain, but I’m over the washing – the laundry is downstairs… outside… through that torrent…. through the waterfalls created by the house and it’s overflowing gutters….

There is a mantra in my head: stop bleeping, stop thumping, stop screaming, stop tapping, stop talking, stop slamming, stop, stop, stop! I need silence. My sanity is almost completely shot.

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Resolutions: Day 3

I’m pretty sure there isn’t a resolution concerning the fact that teenage children suck… especially the exhausting, hypochondriac ones, who wake you every single night to tell you they can’t sleep, that they feel sick, that something hurts. that the world is going to end, that something somewhere somehow is keeping them from slumber…. and once your patience is finally breached and you snap, they fall into a blissful slumber… No, pretty sure there’s no resolution there.

So what could Day 3 have brought? I have started three separate books today – none of which have caught my interest enough. I have spent too many hours with my children at the park and I am still stir crazy tonight. I am hot and I am over tired and sleep is now a forgotten memory (courtesy of the hypochondriac)…

Day 3 could have been to sleep for longer than 2 or 3 hours at a time… but the child has destroyed that whim.

Day 3 could have been to appreciate the small moments… but the hot, over tired nonsense of my head means that was never going to happen…

Day 3 could simply be the quitting day perhaps. It’s always Day 3 after all. The day it all falls apart. The day I realise that resolutions are a waste of time. The day I realise that needing to start new things simply because it is a new year is ridiculous. The day I realise that trying to trap and label time is pure fantasy. But… I already realised all of these things…

I don’t actually do resolutions. I don’t actually like what they represent. But I do like goals and I do like breaking things into manageable parts. So, why not start a list of new things to achieve on the first day of the year?

So, Day 3 has perhaps brought awareness, or grumpiness, or has rocked the boat that needed a bump….

Mothers….

I know I should be full of Christmas spirit and wishing everyone a joyous season…. and I am! But I’m also having a whinge… 😉

This is the message I want to write on my mother’s FB wall:

Hey mum. Merry Christmas! Tried to ring you this morning but you’d already left and gone to spend the day at your other daughter’s house. That would be the daughter no longer speaking to the rest of us. The daughter you have always sided with. So I guess we won’t be hearing from you today.

And I really do hope you had a great birthday the other day. I did offer to have lunch with you or visit/have dinner after you’d finished work, but you quickly shut that idea down – several times. And it’s great you received your gift and ever so nice that you did actually let me know it had arrived, in passing, as you said goodbye after I called again on your birthday. I realise that if you had allowed me to visit, people might think I was a nice daughter, a considerate one even – and we can’t have that!

The kids have wished you happy birthday and merry Christmas through a variety of mediums – I’m sure you are simply too busy to thank them. Several of my friends have also wished you well the last few days and I’ve explained to them that I’m sure you meant to reply.

Yes, work is exhausting and that 38 hour a week job certainly takes a chunk out of your week. Of course you want to spend your spare time visiting your other daughter and her kids. No, it’s fine that I am the only one of your children who lives in the same city and who you have not seen since June.

No mum, I won’t be putting in the incredible effort next year. I’m sorry. I’ve simply decided to be the daughter you keep telling everyone I am.

Don’t waste my time….

ddThis was ever my motto when I was younger, but I had forgotten it for such a long time, that it is no longer a habit. So I forget. I allow people to treat me as less than I deserve.

But I have realised, that I need to be kinder to myself. It’s okay to forget sometimes… to make mistakes… to allow people into my life who take far too much… to give far too much time and energy to people who just don’t give as much in return…

Because eventually, I do remember…. and when I do, the door is so much easier to find….

Trust or integrity…

It took 8 and a half years for me to learn that my husband had been lying to me from the day we first met. Actually lied from the day we first met.

I already had trust issues. I was already convinced that if you confide in people, they’ll use it against you later. He did that, too. I was firmly convinced that everyone you love will leave as soon as you don’t agree with them – I still believe that one far too often. But more than anything else, I have never been good at trusting people are telling me the truth. I look for the nuances. The body language. The skip in the voice. The twitch of a cheek. The flicker of an eye. Anything. I am good at reading people. I’ve always been listening to small things.

I’m rarely focused on the big issues around me. A car crash could happen in front of me some days and I’m listening so hard to the sounds in the distance that I wouldn’t register. The product of a violent upbringing no doubt. Listening to the sounds of the house to prepare for whatever was to come.

So, I had trust issues. Then, when our third child was a few months old, I discovered the lie. The lie that had, oddly, been part of a discussion on the day we first met… and he had never had the courage to tell me. The lie I had actually confronted him about several times during our relationship, including three days before we were married. The lie that continued. Not just the lie itself, but the actions. The betrayal.

Addictions. As simple and as devastating as that.

Conversations with friends had often found themselves revolving around someone having an affair. Would you know if your husband was? I was always adamant that I would know. He was useless at keeping a secret. This was the guy who gave me my birthday and Christmas present at the same time on the day he bought them – usually a few days before Christmas. He was hopeless at secrets. A guy who hated me keeping things from him, even though he knew he’d end up telling people. He was useless at keeping a secret. Except for that one. The one that mattered. The one that protected him.

So, I discovered the lie. My world shattered. But, over the months, we tried to rebuild. Without the addictions. He had quit. When we argued, it was because he was hurt and angry that I did not trust him. I tried to explain that this would take time. That I needed to believe he was now being honest. Months. Months of him looking me in the eye and swearing to me he had quit. Months of looking me in the eye and yelling at me, telling me that if I didn’t trust him, we didn’t have a relationship anymore.

Then, ten days before I had a caesarian with our fourth child, I discovered the lie had never actually ceased.

It wasn’t even the lie that got to me. It wasn’t the addiction. It was the fact that he looked me in the eye and yelled at me because I didn’t trust him. He made me feel like the lowest being because I couldn’t trust him. When he was trying so hard and I couldn’t have faith in him.

He let me take the fall. Begged me to not tell anyone. He was embarrassed. He was sorry. He ticked every box. But he let me take the fall. He let me look like the harpy of a wife whilst he played the harangued husband…

Ten days until a fourth caesarian. I couldn’t leave. He refused to leave. Over the next few years, we flogged the marriage to death. I couldn’t trust him. Every time he opened his mouth, I suspected he was lying. Finally, I discovered he was. A different addiction, but an addiction nonetheless.

Lies, deceit and half truths.

I need black and white nowadays. I need people to tell me in plain English exactly what the situation is and exactly where I stand.

Lunch with a friend today and we touched briefly on the idea of a future relationship. Trust. That’s what matters most. No… it’s integrity.

People lie. People make mistakes. People do things they regret. I am far from perfect. I have made so many mistakes and I have kept so many lies… I still do. It’s not about the lie. That’s what people don’t seem to understand.

When the lie is to protect others, then I can forgive most things. When the lie is to protect yourself though…

So, my trust issues have magnified. I don’t trust people. Every word out of a mouth I dissect and analyse. I look for nuances. I listen to the small things. But it’s not about the lie itself. It’s your actions when you are caught in the lie. The words that fall from your lips afterwards. This is what matters the most. Are you able to stand and face the consequences, apologise honestly, or do you attack the person you have hurt?

Giving up on the Universe

It’s taken some time to quit, but I think I may have finally managed. This is all part of my temporary falling apart, but I think this bit may actually stick.

When life is just too much. When your throat is raw from your screams, but no sound ever comes out. When you are sitting, huddled on the bathroom floor, sobbing your heart out, begging the Universe or whatever Being may exist, to please give you a break – that you cannot take any more – that this is all just too much. At that moment. That precise moment when you know there is just no way you can take another knock. When the prayers have become a mantra. That is the exact moment that there is a knock on the door or the phone rings, and you discover – yes you can. The Universe very helpfully shows you that yes, you can take so much more than that.

Four times in the last 18 months. Four times when I have truly believed that I just can’t do it anymore. Four times the Universe has shown me I am wrong.

So now, I am numb. The Universe keeps throwing punches and I have taken on the role of water a little too well. I am numb. I am absorbing the punches. They no longer truly affect me. There’s a ripple. A moment of thinking – seriously? There’s more? But that is it. I move on. The ripple stills, the surface is calm once more. Life goes on.

So I am giving up on the negativity in my life. Shutting out the negative influences. And as much as the Universe is showing me I am so much stronger than I think, it’s also just a little too negative. So I am giving up on the Universe as well.

Straws and camels

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Sometimes, it’s the littlest things that become the straw. This contraption is leaking. From somewhere. My hallway is flooded. The carpet is soaked. I am washing the towels I used to soak some of the water, in hopes of finding the leak… I’ve discovered the tap washer needs replacing… But there’s another source I cannot find…

So, I’m sitting on the floor watching the washing go around, knowing I’m being ridiculous, knowing this is just a small problem, but trying very hard not to cry, because there is ALWAYS something… And I am so very tired of fixing everything all by myself.