What’s in my bag

I’ve seen a few posts around where people share the contents of their bag.​  I thought as a continuation of my Real-ish​ post I’d show you what was in my bag today.

My lovely bag purchased from ​Bookhou

Eve’s water bottle, my purse, keys and Houdini Stop (I don’t go out without it)​​

And of course, empty biscuit packet, shopping list, pens, highlighters, my phone and half a tonne of cookie crumbs (I am a little piggy).​

Not really hitting the lofty standards of designer purses and cosmetics that others seem to manage,​ but there you have it.

Is your bag as chaotic and disgusting as mine?​

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Art update

The third goal in my 13 for 2013 list was to draw or paint one piece a month.  I’m not creating with a lot of depth and most attempts are stalling half way through but while I can pretty much write off January and February’s attempts March is already complete.​

Simple but complete.​

Dahlia (my love), plucked from our garden as it begins to fade, stem sketched simply, photograph taken and edited.​

I think this goal has to be reduced to one piece quarterly, I’m looking at paring back all of my goals now that I am studying I don’t think they are realistic.​

​I toyed with the idea of incorporating the flowers in to the header.

 

What do you think?​

(Minor) revelations

1. Copper hair colour is impossible to find where I live.  Apparently I’m the only one who likes it.

2. The only thing Intense about L’Oreal Excellence Intense Red 6.66 is the disappointment on seeing the results.

3. My Hairdresser hair stripper is
the best thing to do for hair colour mistakes. My   hair actually feels
healthier than before I stripped it and smells good too. (I picked mine up at Price Attack for $19.95)

4. Perfect
Bun from Kmart is the best $4.00 I’ve spent on myself in a long time, I
actually look like I have hair for the first time since I stopped using
extensions.

5. When I’m sad I spend money and focus on superficial self improvement.  I still look tired.

6. Tomorrow will be better, I have lots to be happy about.

Real-ish

I’ve been reading a lot of critiques of blogs and bloggers recently, not of me obviously* and one of the recurring critiques seems to be based on a perception that things are not real or details are being left out to brand protect.
Probably true.

Given that another issue coming up in both reader reviews and in articles is comparison envy, if the thing that people are viewing isn’t shown as sleek or perfect then there might not be a marketing tool available. The pretty facade feeds back into that by making us feel that void in our lives and then showing us something pretty to fill that void with.  It’s something that has lead to a lot of self doubt on my part and reflection on whether spending time looking at others lives is a healthy thing to do.

It’s complicated.

There are the obvious draw backs to comparing myself to others, when I see a clean house, a woman who never seems to spend all day make-up free, or dressed poorly, it makes me wonder why the hell I can’t get my shit together. Even more so when I see someone claim that they are now going to be keeping the real on display and then continue to show a very styled life, perhaps with the addition of pajama clad kids.  Maybe that is real and I really really don’t have my shit together.  Either way there are benefits to seeing others doing things well, whether real or imagined, it provides something to aspire to and if not then an escape.

I like to escape.

The fact is my house is almost always a disaster, partly because for every one mess I clean Eve creates two, partly because our house lacks any kind of built in storage, partly because we are living in the house while we renovate,  partly because teenagers and partly because I vacillate between keeping up with housework and not giving a damn.

But I like to be real about who I am and where I am, if I leave something out it’s that no one asked, or that I’m fairly certain no one sane wants to see my bedroom floor piled with dirty laundry, or clean laundry or the insane amount of house magazines that I buy.

I won’t make a sweeping claim that I am going to keep things gritty and real here, but I promise that if there’s anything you’re curious about I’m a mostly open book.

This is me Sunday afternoon, sitting in my bed that has no linen on it, eating chocolate (Lindt 85% cocoa doesn’t have dairy) in my pajamas because that’s me.

I’m wearing make-up but my roots need doing and I haven’t shaved my armpits.

This is me about as real as I’m willing to show.

*I’m not a big enough fish.

All the things

They make me who I am.

All of our stories are different, some are filled with joy and not painted across with big broad strokes of sorrow.

I didn’t always know a lot of my story, and truth told I may never know it all.

I knew that moving from the city to the country in primary school changed my course.
I knew that my brother dying changed me inside and wiped most of my childhood memories clean. I know that I still soften it by saying that he died and not that he committed suicide, because that will always be raw like blistered flesh never healed but hidden away.

I know that having my eldest child when I was 17 changed me again, forcing my heart to slowly bloom. As she has grown my strength and power has too.

I know that day that I ran to and bundled my children in the car pretending I was going to the hospital, but finally running for freedom, didn’t seem like one of the best days of my life but it was and it’s power still resonates through every bone I have.

I know that changing my name returned ownership of myself and my destiny back to me.

I know that the day that Ty popped up in my Facebook chat and made me laugh until my face hurt was the beginning of my life as me. The beginning of understanding that having a partner is that, an equal to fight through with and to always strive to make everything better.

I know that these almost five years have flashed by and I hold tightly to the days, even while they run through my fingers like water, because too soon they will be over and I am terrified of death.
Mortality booms in my ears and if I examine it too closely it blinds and deafens me.

I know that every day I can be grateful, to be here, to be loved and to work towards making this world a better place in some powerful way.

Because all the things, they make me who I am.

All the things

They make me who I am.
All of our stories are different, some are filled with joy and not painted across with big broad strokes of sorrow.

I didn’t always know a lot of my story, and truth told I may never know it all.

I knew that moving from the city to the country in primary school changed my course.
I knew that my brother dying changed me inside and wiped most of my childhood memories clean. I know that I still soften it by saying that he died and not that he committed suicide, because that will always be raw like blistered flesh never healed but hidden away.

I know that having my eldest child when I was 17 changed me again, forcing my heart to slowly bloom. As she has grown my strength and power has too.

I know that day that I ran to and bundled my children in the car pretending I was going to the hospital, but finally running for freedom, didn’t seem like one of the best days of my life but it was and it’s power still resonates through every bone I have.

I know that changing my name returned ownership of myself and my destiny back to me.

I know that the day that Papa Wolff popped up in my Facebook chat and made me laugh until my face hurt was the beginning of my life as me. The beginning of understanding that having a partner is that, an equal to fight through with and to always strive to make everything better.

I know that these almost five years have flashed by and I hold tightly to the days, even while they run through my fingers like water, because too soon they will be over and I am terrified of death.
Mortality booms in my ears and if I examine it too closely it blinds and deafens me.

I know that every day I can be grateful, to be here, to be loved and to work towards making this world a better place in some powerful way.

Because all the things, they make me who I am.

Quirky

At this point I kind of have to admit I’m more quirky than normal. I’ve spent a lot of time either hiding my differences or allowing people I am close to to wrinkle their nose at the things I like or want to do.  Some of my quirks are not so helpful, like mild claustrophobia and that even the idea of touching terry cloth makes me shudder (I could go on but I’d need a normal person nearby just so they could remind me of all the things about me that are odd). I’ve heard many people tell me I’m weird, but when my husband tells me I’m weird he says it with a smile and admiration.  He likes that I don’t so much march to the beat of my own drum as I do skip to the music in my head, it’s taken a while for me to appreciate that, it’s taken a while for me to learn to like myself.
The thing is I should more than just tolerate myself or have a small but burgeoning happiness about who I’ve become.   I needed a turning point and today I really think I got one.  Someone I really like said to me ‘I used to think I was weird but then I realised I was just awesome.’

She was right, and it’s time for me to realise that I’m awesome too.

Roots

I indulged in one of the few tv shows I am fascinated by the other week*, Who Do You Think You Are?
It just really amazes me that people can go back through their family tree for generation upon generation and discover the minutia of ancestors lives.  And yet this is where it gets difficult for me.  You see watching the show also uncovers a bit of a sick affliction that I seem to have, because it is essentially picking at my own wounds opening up some very uncomfortable truths for me.

I can’t go back and trace my family line, when I was younger I thought that this was only because my grandmother was illegitimate.  Such a big deal back then that her birth certificate was actually stamped ILLEGITIMATE, that’s right the registrar for births had a big shame stamp for people who were born out of wedlock.  People were classy back in 1925.

I spent a bit of time prodding and digging family members to try to get information regarding my grandmothers family and to hunt out clues as to who her father might have been.  Unfortunately my family are a whirlwind of interest on the surface, but largely apathetic when it comes to doing anything, so I mostly got I can’t be bothered with this and it’s too hard signals.  There were some other weird signals I got, but I guess I can be a bit oblivious at times.

The point I’m trying to get to is that it still shocks me that it took 29 years and my grandmother’s death for me to find out that we had more in common than I’d expected.

The majority of my life I was led to believe that I knew who my father was and I didn’t.  My parents were married for a substantial amount of time before I was born and I had a brother who was five years older than me, so while I never quite “fit” with my family it seemed strange to question why.

Some small part of me was always questioning the differences and spent an equal amount of time writing off those questions.  I think this is why after an already rough year I came unhinged at finding out the truth.  It wasn’t so much the information but the realisation that I had spent my life burying my own instincts and believing the lies of omission that I was fed.

One of my few early memories is asking who my dad was, which is a really odd thing to have asked, but I guess that was instinct, and being told the gas man.  The man I thought was my dad was a gas fitter and supposedly the person who is my biological father was too.  These mocking lies have continued after the truth was finally revealed, my parents both tow the line that I have no need to know about myself.

If I was adopted I would have legal access to information about the absent parts of me. The reality is that I am not and due to my mothers inability to accept that it is important for me to know more and for her to fully reveal the truth I will probably never really know who my father is.

Some days I think this is no big deal, I know who I am and a bit of genetic material isn’t so important.  Other days I see how different I am from my family, made obvious by the fact that they clearly do not understand me.  It makes me wonder, what do these other sections of my family look like?  Are they anything like me, or am I an alien to them also?

Do they even know about me?

The genetic void is both vastly empty and utterly heavy.

Most days the best I can take from this is channeling it in to being a better parent, by making sure that my children know their history and the truth of what makes family.

Both genetically and emotionally.

I hope that being open and honest makes for a more balanced discovery of what has come together to make them who they are.  And allows them to feel secure enough to let go of that history in order to truly find themselves.

*I originally started writing this the day after I last watched it,I just wasn’t sure where I was going with this.