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Friday, April 30, 2010

Relationships, or why I don't have one!

The other night I was flicking through the channels and found a rerun of Sex and the City that I had seen before but watched again. There is something ultimately comforting about Sex and the City, something familiar that I totally enjoy. So the episode saw Carrie wondering why she was turning down a date with politician man until Miranda pointed out it was probably the bad break up with Big that was coming between her and any other potential relationship.

Wow! That one hit home with a bang. Six years and four months ago the man who I thought was my soul mate (don’t worry – I now realise he was just another self-centred, narcissus bastard) dumped me for no reason that he chose to give at the time. Actually he never gave me a reason. Ever.

I am now totally over him. I rarely even think of him any more. When I do it’s with a feeling of disbelief that I could have ever been so na├»ve, so stupid to have fallen for him. But still the bad break up makes me wary of forming another relationship.

As soon as I sense a man becoming interested in me, I can feel myself loading that invisible barrier between us. I physically recoil from him and retreat into my shell. I can be extremely sociable with gay men or married men – both of whom are very safe to be around – but show me a single man and I will show you the quickest exit to the door.

Now don’t assume that I am yearning to be in a relationship because I’m not. I’m comfortable with my life and I’m not sure I am ready to share any part of it with any one else. It’s just an interesting situation to be in. Almost like an out of body experience – me watching myself backtrack at speed from any semi interested male. It’s a comedy of sorts.

I have no doubt that when I’m ready for a relationship something will come my way. The Universe tends to deal with these things in its own way. Until then I will try valiantly not to look too disgusted at any male advances. I will endeavour to smile politely and move away at not too rapid a pace!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Ladies lunch at the football

Yesterday I went to the annual ladies lunch at my youngest son’s football club. Every year when his club plays a certain other club, the women from both clubs get together at a fundraising lunch. It was my third lunch and they just keep getting better and better.

The lunch has grown over the years from a handful of women in the clubhouse to yesterday’s effort which saw around 200 of us in a large marquee on the lawns behind the clubhouse. It has become such a popular event that many women couldn’t get tickets to it this year, so no doubt it will be bigger next year. Yesterday funds were being raised for a breast cancer charity and one of the members, a breast cancer survivor, came and talked to us. The marquee was decorated with pink balloons, the tables had white tablecloths and pink napkins, the food was lovely and fully donated and the alcohol flowed. The men from the football club’s board and committee worked the bar and waited tables for the event.

There was a fashion parade, lingerie and makeup were there to be tried on and bought and the afternoon finished with a duet who belted out a range of music from the 70’s to now. Women of all ages filled the dance floor – elegantly and inelegantly! There were a couple of women there who are probably waking up today hoping they just had a bad dream and had not really drunk that much champagne! Like the one who was lifting her dress to her waist to try on some of the lingerie, leaving absolutely nothing to the imagination! Or the slightly older woman bent over double on her chair, sound asleep, but still with a firm grasp on her glass.

Oh yes, and there were two football games! In the previous two years I had flitted in and out of the lunch to watch my eldest son play. (He now plays for another club as he moved to the country). But this year, as my youngest son still had his arm in a sling, I was free to sit through the entire lunch. I had brought a couple of girlfriends with me and we quickly made friends with the other women on the table – some of the footballers wives, girlfriends, friends and mothers. I did sneak out to watch a bit of the main game, until it started raining and the marquee again began to look attractive.

Unfortunately my son’s team lost badly. They also ended up with two players down on the field due to injury and none on the bench to replace them. The senior team won well, but also suffered some injuries. With the players already out for awhile, the two teams are beginning to look like the walking wounded!

Both of the girlfriends who came with me yesterday have already said they will come next year and I know of at least three other women who were sad they missed it. Looks like next year I could almost have a table of ten organised by myself!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010


I am amazed at my youngest son’s attitude. Even with an injured shoulder, with his arm still in a sling, he remains positive. He has continued to stay fit on an exercise bike and constantly asks the rehabilitation expert at the football club for more things to do. Next Tuesday the sling should come off and he will be able to start jogging. He can’t wait.

His attitude has just enforced what I already believe. That positivity can and does go far toward accomplishing goals.

It’s all about attitude and, having just reached the milestone of 50 years on this earth, I know my attitude is fantastic at the moment. Whoever it was who told me that turning 50 was like beginning life all over again was exactly right. It’s like I’ve started another life altogether. This moth has shed her wings and gone back to being a butterfly!

I haven’t felt this healthy or this energetic for years. Yes, I am trying to keep to a healthy diet and yes, I have started a new exercise regime, but this is bigger than just trying to look after myself. I feel as if someone has pulled a rope, the background scenery has changed and I’m about to step on an untravelled road with a myriad of adventures awaiting me.

Oh yes, there are downsides to turning 50; mostly physical ones. Sometimes I look at my hands and wonder where they came from. They have more pronounced veins and wrinkled skin than they ever had. My waist has suddenly grown to the same measurement my hips used to be and my hips! Well, let’s just not mention my hips right now. I look in the mirror and spot new grey eyebrow hairs almost every day and even some white eyelashes. Yes, dying all of those is on my list!

But even the excess weight, the flabby skin and the wrinkles cannot keep me down. I’ve earned every one of them and they all make me who I am today. I am the daughter, the ex wife, the mother and the friend who’s every experience has etched itself into my body and I have enjoyed the ride.

As I step onto the new road and look around me with both caution and anticipation, I am secretly excited by this new phase in my life. Attitude! I have plenty of that I hope!

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Football, injuries and rehab

So, as I mentioned in my last post, my youngest son dislocated his shoulder at football last week. That’s Australian Rules Football. It was the last practice match before the season started, so he had to miss the first game this week much to his frustration. For those of you who haven’t heard of Australian Rules Football, visit this site:

It was a moment that every parent prays won’t happen. He was over the ball, fighting hard for it and someone from the opposition landed on his shoulder. The next I saw he was holding his arm and struggling from the ground, calling someone to come on and replace him. His shoulder looked awful. The top of his arm was sort of concave with the shoulder bone sticking out over it. Naturally it was his right arm. I felt sick. But I was also extremely proud of him. Even in immense pain he carried himself well.

Injuries on the football field are a nightmare for mothers, especially single mothers, in more ways than just the pain caused to their sons. The question always hovers over one, whether to run out on the field, or wait until they go to the rooms? Does one run out at all? Will running out to see how they are mean they are less of a “man” in their teammate’s eye? Do I? Don’t I?

After a few moments of quandary I went into the club rooms, only to be told I had to get the car and take him to hospital. Why they didn’t call an ambulance I don’t know. So I ran off to ask my friend (arrived from Sydney the night before) to wait with my son while I threw our chairs in the car and manoeuvred it through traffic to get closer to the change rooms. It seemed like an eternity for the football club’s physiotherapist and trainers to get my son into the car and another eternity for me to negotiate the traffic, attempting to miss bumps, until we go to Emergency at the local hospital.

I parked in the ambulance bay and found two nice paramedics who helped to get my son out of the car and into a wheelchair. Thank goodness my friend was there as she moved the car for me into a nearby car park. Thank goodness for the wonderful triage nurse who almost immediately got my son seen to. Thank goodness also for the excellent nurses who looked after him and the outstanding doctor who gently manipulated his shoulder back into place with the assistance of morphine and laughing gas.

Later on X-rays would show there were no bones broken or fractured. Our awesome naturopath came around with some cream and homepathics for him and the massage lady I took him to managed to realign him. The following week the physiotherapist would lift our hopes by saying he might be able to play again in four weeks (three now).

So now he has one more week in a sling (we hope). He goes to see the physiotherapist again in about ten days and we find out what he can and can’t do from there. I know he will do all he can to get it strong again so he can play. Meanwhile we went to watch his friends play, and lose, the first match of the season. I could tell he was frustrated on the sidelines, but he held himself well.

Am I looking forward to the day he runs out onto the field again? Of course I am. But of course there will also be some trepidation and my heart will be in my mouth every time someone comes near him.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Wonderful Weekend!

Well, I had a wonderful birthday weekend. Four of my friends came from different parts of the country and stayed with me. It was amazing having five females in a home that is usually male dominated! They didn’t know each other, but all got on really well.

We went out for drinks on Saturday night and some of my Melbourne friends joined us. There was plenty of chatter, laughter and bubbly! I had a lovely time – so good in fact that I wouldn’t mind turning 50 every weekend!!!

There was only one low point of the weekend. That was when my youngest son had his shoulder dislocated while playing football. I watched it happen and I must admit I felt a tad nauseous to see his shoulder like that. He was so brave. There were no tears, just a flurry of swear words.

The trainers got his arm in a sling, put him in my car and we raced off to hospital. I parked in the Emergency bay and grabbed a couple of paramedics to help me get him out of the car. Luckily one of my friends was with me because she parked the car for me while I went with my son.

Three and a half hours later he was released, arm in a sling and pretty much drugged up with pain killers. All he could talk about was how upset he was that he won’t be playing football for at least 6 weeks. He’s already working out what exercise he can do and what he can’t do. I can see its going to be a long 6 weeks…

Friday, April 9, 2010

My Bucket List - Part 1

Over the last week or so I’ve been doing some serious thinking about my bucket list and I’ve come up with the first draft. These are things that I’ve wanted to do for awhile, in some cases for many years.

1) Own my own home

2) Write a financially successful book

3) Write a critically acclaimed book

4) Travel back to USA and retrace my birthplace and the first 10 years of my life, as well as travelling to places I haven’t yet been

5) Travel to Africa, the Caribbean and South America

6) Learn German and Spanish

7) Learn to Salsa

8) Own three more investment properties

It’s a start. The list is not necessarily in order of what I’d like to do first, but it gives me some goals to begin with. Now I just have to formulate the steps to get me there!

Saturday, April 3, 2010

The Big 5 0!!!

Next week I will be 50. Fifty. No matter which way it’s written it still looks the same.

I’m not scared or depressed or anxious about achieving this milestone. Possibly because my anxiety at the moment is being all used up worrying whether I will get my next assignment done and in on time!

Actually I feel pretty good. I definitely feel more like a teenager than a middle aged woman. I still dance to video hits on the TV and I sing along too. Given the choice, I would much rather stay up all night and sleep in all day. Unfortunately the working world doesn’t quite approve of this schedule, so I’ve had to conform.

I’m fairly healthy too. I’m in nearly as good a shape as I was at 40. I eat well, I do weights three times a week and I try to fit in ten minute bursts of cardio when I can. I fit into jeans I haven’t worn for a year. OK, so the chilli chips and chocolate this weekend weren’t the best options, but a girl needs something to get her through a 2500 word English assignment!

The difference I do feel is to do with mortality. Suddenly, I realise I don’t have unlimited time left to do the things I want to do. When am I ever going to get the money to travel the world? Or to buy my own home?

I have a “bucket list” in my head. Things I’ve been meaning to do for awhile. The time has come to write them down and turn them into goals. Let’s see how many I can achieve before the sand has run through the hour glass and my time is up.