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Relationships

Musings of sorts, Relationships

Do Your Thing and Your People Will Come

May 23, 2016

I’m going to get a bit hippy on you tonight, and talk about finding your people, because they will come, once you start doing your thing.

What sparked the idea to write about this was a couple of things that happened last week. I was listening to my gorgeous school friend Rebecca Campbell’s Hay House World Summit Talk and she spoke about being in the spiritual closet. She had a clear gift of intuition, but hid it through high shool. She followed the ‘normal path’, working hard, climbing the ladder, until that knock knock came loud and clear. She could not ignore that feeling anymore. To get that THING that is bursting inside of you, to be made, to be shared into the world. When her world came crumbling down, she realised her true purpose and finally gave in and followed that feeling. Today she has built a successful business, doing what she loves, answering her souls callings, of writing, coaching and guiding others to work their light. By doing this Rebecca has called in her people. She is now surrounded by her people. What was once ‘weird’ to her, that she shut down inside her, has become her normal. Her world.

I was nodding and smiling as I was listening along, thinking about how we all need our people. Because you really feel like you are a lone weirdo, until they come. A couple of days ago, I was listening to a friend who told me that she started to create, after attending an art class. I was so excited that she had found her Big Magic, that thing that you lose time in because you just love it.  Her paintings were freaking awesome, but she was upset that her partner did not share her enthusiasm for her new found art. I can totally understand. Once we create, or let that initial calling out, it can be a very scary thing. You want someone to tell you that it is okay. That your creations do not in fact suck. That you are granted permission to keep on going, along this scary path of creativity. And when you look for that validation elsewhere, and it doesn’t come, it can be soul destroying. You put your thing out there into the world, expecting fireworks, and in fact, very little happens most of the time. But here is the thing. I started this blog for a similar reason. The words just had to come out of me. I was looking for a way to express myself in a way that was not accessible to me in my work, my relationship and my study.

I needed something else.

Something that was me. 

And so I began to write, terribly at first.  When I did, I looked for validation of my creative pursuits from those around me. I thought my creations would change the world of everyone around me. They they would be as excited as me, that I had found this thing called writing. They were not. In fact, it was a non response. My Partner, while supportive is engaged in his own photography business and is worried about his own ideas, he didn’t have the space to birth and then worry about mine as well. My parents thought, oh that is nice hobby but this creative thing you are going through isn’t a real job... is it? Friends read the blog, enthusiastically to start, but this dwindled off. Some never did.  Some did and always pointed out my early, poor comprehension.

But you know what happened through out this process?

I found my people. 

Friends and partners do not have to walk this journey with you. This does not mean that they do not love you or support you. 

I found that once I started doing my thing, I found people online, in courses and my everyday life who were on similar paths.

They are bloggers who want to travel and fall in Love with Life,  reflect on Living Imperfectly  or run and cook with their Thermomix.

There is a  a whole freaking community of cat lady bloggers out there. A lot, in fact, which may worry some of you!  I have found people that are linked to me for a reason, through school, or running or work, but their purpose has been to remind me to keep on creating. They are the people who are not scared to create, just because, why not?

So get out there and do your thing, because once you do your people will come and find you.

I promise.

Happy Monday!

Ashleigh XXX

Relationships, Social Justice

When Violence Strikes

April 3, 2016

It is Saturday night. I had just been working on the balcony, re-potting and giving love to some much neglected plants. We are sitting down, having a drink and a car screeches past. We hear loud pitched screaming, like someone is getting stabbed. Both of us put our drinks down, and run outside instinctively. (Okay, so The Ginger Hunk hobbles and I run.) We see a parked car on the road that appears to have come to an awkward halt. The Ginger Hunk goes up to the window, and asks very calmly “is everything okay here guys, we just heard screaming and yelling”.

What we find in the car is a HEAVILY pregnant girl in the driver’s seat, frozen, petrified and very still, and a child no older than three in the back, crying.

Just having a fight with my missus. He explains. This is a family matter.

Sweating. Fuming. Angry. Boiling. It’s not a family matter when the whole street hears you screaming.

Missus explains that she wants to get out of the car. We open the door. She looks relieved that someone has seen it too.

Out she gets and the child. (Who was crying and looking petrified.)

I’m over the road talking to the missus, who is explaining that he is just angry today because they have been at a family thing and that he has to learn his lesson this time.I explain that the noises were so loud that we had to do something to see if everyone was okay. 

Suddenly, the angry man starts laying into the Ginger Hunk. The police are called.

The missus is over the road now too with them and what was a heated conversation is now a physical scuffle. I’m with the child over the other side of road, who is alone and crying, repeating that the police are taking his Daddy away. I say that it’s not okay for Daddy to be this angry at Mummy. He wants his toy out of the car but I can’t go over there.

The Ginger Hunk is on the ground now, restraining the angry man. Neighbours run out to help hold him down.

Police arrive. The angry man is whisked away, and we are taken to the police station to make statements. I’m not sure what happened to the girl.

What kind of life is ahead for the child that is about to be born?  What kind of life is ahead for her?

He would have spent a few hours in the cop shop. He is probably at home now.

Promising to do things differently. To change.

And of us intervening, although the moment was instinctive, I wonder if it was best.

Should we have approached the car?

Did we make it worse?

What if it wasn’t going to get physical?

What if that WAS the only time he lost his shit?

At any rate, even if it was, shouldn’t we all pull up people when their behaviour is unacceptable?

By doing nothing, we are agreeing with what is going on.

Speaking to our neighbours today, some said they heard the screaming. But did nothing.

Why do we all think someone else has got this?

Ashleigh XXX

If you are affected by Domestic Violence Call the Domestic Violence Line for assistance on 1800 656 463

A Childfree Life, Musings of sorts, Relationships

When You’re No Longer Needed

March 20, 2016

I put myself in the ‘single’ zone when it comes to friendships. I’m available. (Possibly too available.) In fact, I have a hard time saying no to most things, as I have previously explored. The Ginger Hunk and I are not a coupley couple. Indeed we are in love, but we take on separate interests, and encourage each other to do so. I have no desire to jump of cliffs, he has no desire to do yoga or endurance events. So when The Ginger Hunk’s hip is in fine form (which it ain’t at the moment), we do our separate activities most weekends.

This leaves me available to my girlfriends, to be around for stuff. Being childfree, and not scheduled up with catch-ups, dinners, (and all that shit we stopped doing a long time ago) I guess I am more available than most.  But something is shifting in the air, and I’m feeling a little lonely. I feel like I’m no longer needed. I listened to this Podcast by Amy E Smith the other day, and a few things rang a bell. Particularly the part about your emotions being like a bank. People make withdrawals then deposits, if you’re lucky.

I’ve realised that while people are not withdrawing, there are not many deposits being made in my emotional bank account. While I would be the one that people would call for advice, after dates or what not, once entering the couple/parenting zone I seem to be forgotten. I’m not single, so I don’t get asked out with the single girls, or on the mothers lunch dates. This leaves me in la-la-land in the thirty something world that is pronatalist Sydney.

But hey, I’m still here, as a human in this world. Don’t forget I’ve been a child one, and have parents.

I’ve travelled, studied, and seen a lot of shit that qualifies me to give some advice on some shit, right?

Apparently not. (As someone said to me this week.)

Most of all in the forgotten zone, I wish someone would stop and ask me how I am. When I’m listening to baby talk, relationship troubles, how about asking what is happening in my world? Or taking the time to call to ask, just out of the blue?  It hasn’t been easy to have a partner off work, battling Department Of Veteran’s Affairs, chewing through savings and putting his career on hold. Being on the other side of that is taking its toll. But like life, we all have our shit to navigate through.

So, I wanted you to know that I’m still here, as I always will be.

Don’t you want to know how I am?

Plodding along trying to make sense of this murky adult life.

Like we all are.

Ashleigh XXX

Daily Life, Relationships

Do you say yes – when you actually mean no?

March 13, 2016

I’m totally on overdrive at the moment. Sydney life is busy. I didn’t notice that I was hitting the wall until the other day my lovely freediving coach, who is not even in the same country, emailed me the other day and said, “are you okay, I see you are online a lot and not sleeping so much?”.

Nail on the head. TRUE. Guilty.

I am not sleeping so much. My mind is full of thoughts, about James’s hip, him not being able to work, it is taking its toll.  I started a new job, which I am settling into, (but you know when you start and you have to think of EVERYTHING, like how to work the photocopier, and who are the cat people, that sort of thing). Getting my tattoo was a big deal which led to mass parental disappointment and I had a lot on at the time. Articles due. A month of full-time work. A picture book bubbling away that I am guilty every day for not starting. Organising Vietnam and travel stories. Weddings, engagements. The list goes on.

No one is dying and I fully accept that this is first world busy shit that I am complaining about.

So when I busy and stressed, you would think that I would LET PEOPLE WORRY ABOUT THEIR OWN SHIT?

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Not only do I say YES to ALL things but then I go and VOLUNTEER to do MORE things, creating my own hole.

In the past month I have, offered up the following.

  • Had a podcasting idea that I want to start with another blogger, and nearly almost started it until sense told me to wait until life settles down.
  • Offered to lend my friend my wedding earrings, even though she did not even ASK in the first place, (her saying yes would involve me going half way across Sydney to collect them of another friend who borrowed them last.)
  • Offered to visit my mate in Melbourne, even though we have no cash, or time.
  • Offered to grocery shop for my friend who just had a baby, noting the above limitations, (and that friend can probably afford home delivery).
  • Offered everyone who just had a baby that James would go around immediately and take photos of said baby even though he can’t walk, move or bend at the moment.
  • Offered to clean up after a wedding. Who the fuck does that? Why the fuck did I do that? (Thank goodness my friend said no.)
  • Offered to edit a little free magazine I sometimes write for. This would be voluntary for a little bit, and I am currently still considering it, because I think it would be a good experience to grow the magazine. (Currently on hold – awaiting more information about the time committment.)
  • Promised I will trek half way across Bali, to visit a friend who is living there on my 7 day holiday, adding 6 hours of travel time and cutting two days off my freediving training.
  • Offered to help set up an engagement party, instead of just turning up for fun like everyone else.

So right now, I am trying to slooowwww down before I just jump and offer myself up to everything and anything.

I need to focus on me, and The Ginger Hunk.

Like he said, can’t look after him if I don’t look after me.

Why do you think I say YES AUTOMATICALLY to so many things?

Do you say YES when you actually mean NO? 

Why do we do this to ourselves?

Happy Sunday 

Ashleigh XXX

Linking up with My Home Truths for #IMUSTCONFESS 

 

Relationships, Travel Tips

The benefits of solo travel when you’re in a relationship

November 25, 2015

I haven’t travelled solo, truly solo since I was 22. Off I went, backpacking around Asia, not a smart phone in sight. Back in the day you sat in a cafe with your journal, or a book, (or god-forbid you actually sat down and talked to other people.) Since then, I have been in relationships so I have always travelled with someone else. When travelling as a couple, you feel much safer. You have your dependable other half, to share experiences with, laugh with, and navigate together through tricky situations.

But at the ripe old age of 34, I have found myself travelling solo and am seeing the benefits of solo travel when you’re in a relationship.

You will learn to trust yourself 

I am a frequent checker of things with my other half when travelling. “where are my keys?” or “have you got your passport?” or “where are my shoes?” and the list goes on. Sometimes I am like a talkback radio. (It drives The Ginger Hunk crazy.) Flying solo, I am responsible for myself, my belongings, and my whereabouts. Sure, there have been a few mishaps, I got lost, I needed to navigate myself to the clinic for an injury and freaked myself out when I forgot my torch. These are probably previous tasks that I would have delegated to my ‘other half ‘ to organise for me or wanted to rely on heavily for support.

You will meet new people 

When you’re in a couple, people assume that you are happy in your bubble, and that you do not need to meet other humans. This is simply not true. The Ginger Hunk and I always ‘pick up people’ when we are travelling, and usually come away from each adventure with a new friend. Having said that, I’ve noticed when you’re travelling solo, people are more likely to strike up a conversation. I’ve chatted to a couple at dinner, been invited to coffee after yoga an a women’s circle. All experiences that I would have missed with my other half in tow. You’re more likely to give a ‘talk to me’ vibe, when you’re alone (unless you have resting bitch face.)

You will gain confidence 

I would never go and sit in the middle of a restaurant in Sydney solo. I would order take out.  Not here. I want to go to that cocktail bar with a cool pool. I want to have a sunset dinner overlooking the rice fields. And so I go. Alone. Without waiting for a friend or partner, you’re forced to go out and do the things you want to do. Otherwise it is quite simple, you will miss out on these once in a lifetime experiences (and no one wants that!).

You can do whatever you want, whenever you want 

The Ginger Hunk is more of a chiller while travelling (unless it involves paragliding). I like to fill my days up. I’ve started my routine here with yoga before breakfast, before spending the morning writing, then some kind of activity in the afternoon, another yoga and dinner somewhere else. I have been in and out of my room all day long. I love my Ginger Hunk but I am not going to lie, I pack more into my days without him. I’ve also been eating vegetarian again which I am loving, and had a three-hour shopping excursion with no restriction.

You will appreciate your partner more 

When you get that ‘wow this is awesome’ feeling you also get that little pang in your chest of missing your other half and wanting them to share the moment too! They say that absence makes the heart grow fonder, and it does. Being apart from someone you loves makes you think of all the reasons you love and miss them as well as what you appreciate about them. Having independent experiences and adventures gives you loads to share over that next bottle of bubbles. (Which for me, will be on Sunday!)

Happy travels! 

Ashleigh XXX

 

Musings of sorts, Relationships

Solitude

October 19, 2015

Sometimes the Ginger Hunk goes away for work and I am fine. Fine I tell you.

The way it usually goes when he leaves is that I clean the house (so it looks like no man has ever lived here). Then, the Sashi cat and I cook what we like (usually smaller, more chick sized meals). On the first night she swiftly usurps his side of the bed and I settle into single chick, feline assisted life until he returns.

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The Ginger Hunk and I are not one of those couples that live our life in each others pockets. We don’t make each other do each other’s sports (albeit for a brief period when we got together). He does his things, I do my things. When he goes off paragliding for the day I relish in the time to write or read. We tell each other about our adventures with excitement and love. We support each othe

But this week, I really miss him so. I have been wallowing around the house like a little lost puppy!

I don’t know why. Watching girly movies on my own just made  me sadder.

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Even the cat has been extra annoying singing the song of her people at 5am.

See you soon my Ginger Hunk.

Ash XXX