Saturday, October 14, 2017

When giants fall... who is left to lead the charge?

I never thought I would be writing about this so soon. Somehow I always expected my teachers to be around to continue to teach me. Even when we had done our high school dance the music always lingered as long as they were alive. I was the student and they were the teachers. Ready to be called upon.

But when the teachers start to fall, the students have to step up and offer the lessons they have learnt, it fills me with fear and anxiety. I have not learnt enough! They have not shared enough! And when they leave us long before we expect them to, we realise we have run out of time. Out of opportunity. And they leave a cavenous emptiness we can never hope to fill. 

Mr Goolam Pandit was the most relevant, forward thinking, intuitive, inspiring, game changing giant I had ever met. He made a difference. Every day. In every moment. It makes me sad that I have lost him and it makes me even more sad that future generations of students  will never have the pleasure of having met him. I wish I had reached out sooner and let him know how thankful I am for the effort and time he had invested in all of us. I always hoped I would run into him again somewhere along my life’s journey. I imagined that he would have some witty, acerbic, sarcastic comment to deliver with his usual flair. And I would offer up something to match. For this was our language. Delivering foul insults with a comedic tinge. But alas that was not meant to be.

I guess that leaves us to lead the charge. To make sure proper English remains lit. Rest well my English giant. The world became too small for a man of your stature. You will always live on in the mind ripples you created in all of us. You took teaching to a fare-thee-well.

“What the caterpillar calls the end of the world, the master calls a butterfly.” - Richard Bach

“For life and death are one, even as the river and the sea are one.” - Kahlil Gibran

Until we meet again.

Sunday, February 26, 2017

When Life says ... Bazinga!

First, there was one. Just me.
Dinner for one, travel for one, apartment for one. 

Then there was two. Us. So in love, so married, so happy.

We had a little halfling, which made us three. So content, so grateful, so amazed.

We wanted just one halfling more ... instead we were blessed with two!

After all the heartache and disappointment, the giddy highs and sunny smiles, here we are finally. A family of 5.

Bazinga! says Life. You thought you’d always be alone. 
Bazinga! says Life. You thought you’d never be a mom.
Bazinga! says Life. Here have some twins.

What a trip Life is. Just when you think you have things mapped out. The landscape changes. You change. You adapt. You evolve. You become another you.

You are fluid, Life is fluid. Change is inevitable. You cant fight it, you cant control it. Sometimes its glorious and you bask in its glow, sometimes its dark and dank and damp and depressing. 

But ultimately its the best rollercoaster ride and it demands to be ridden. 

There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.     Albert Einstein

Thursday, April 21, 2016

The most interesting parts of yourself.

Since the rise of the narcissistic selfie, everyone has become obsessed with looking their best. 

Makeup, clothing, hair, picture background all have to be on point for the perfect selfie. All that effort needs to be made, highlighted contouring makeup, perfectly coiffed hair and just the right mix of light makes for a perfect selfie. Ofcourse you will have to contort yourself like a chinese acrobat at cirque du soliel and then proceed to take 534 pics so you can choose the absolute best one or five. As luck would have it somehow there is always a broom/mop or a toilet in the background but you can  overlook that since the part with your face in it is just too perfect. And if you are wanting to include more of your background or more people in it you can whip out your selfie stick and hey presto! ... a group selfie with a fountain or mountain or beach.

The irony of the selfie is that human beings are not drawn to each others perfections. Rather the opposite is true. Our curiosity is peaked by each others imperfections. There is no one more interesting than someone who has gotten divorced, failed, maimed, broke, got fired, made millions, won a car, got massive promotion, is famous etc. We want to discuss those people. We salivate just waiting for an opportunity to discuss them and their latest accomplishments or failures. 

So when we break that down on a smaller scale. Being perfect is not interesting or attractive. Being imperfect is. Your chipped tooth, your curly dry hair, your incomplete education, your weird laugh. The way you speak, walk, dance. Your silly jokes. Your crooked feet. It is all imperfectly perfect. So laugh more, less duck face. Actually swim, and forget to take a picture of you at the beach. You don't need a picture to prove that you actually did something. Forget makeup. Look around, listen, be present and climb out of your own head.

While I applaud the impressive advancements in technology. I mourn the loss of freedom. We used to be free to experience life without recording it. Without having to see our crazy, uninhibited selves and our actions again. We could remember it as we wished to. We could be surprised!! Life used to be so much more surprising. 

The most interesting parts of yourself happens when no one is looking. And that includes you.

Relax. Live. Let go.

"Imperfection is beauty, madness is genius, and it's better to be absolutely ridiculous than absolutely boring"      -     Marilyn Monroe

I wish one day....

I could say "I didn't even know I was pregnant".

Just the same as those who say "oh look its dinner time, I completely forgot to eat lunch". The truth is infertility is not something you can ever forget. Its like moss on a river stone. It just lies there, slowly covering you so that you are no longer able to distinguish which parts are rock and which parts are moss. Over a long enough time it becomes such an ingrained part of you that you forget who you used to be before it consumed you. 

Its not the easiest thing to explain to those who have never experienced the hold it can have you. Perhaps you can just set it aside they say. Just relax, it will happen. You're stressed. Just have your mind think about something else. Imagine for a moment you tied an elastic band to your wrist. Sometimes its really tight and you can barely feel your hand and some days it's so loose you think its about to fall off! It never does. Its just there, every single moment of every single day. Thats how it feels. You can never shake it off. You can never control how its going to make you feel on the day. It just does as it does when it does it. Some days it makes you so happy knowing its there, you're filled with incredible hope and dreams that maybe today is the day. And sometimes it fills you with such dread and sadness because you know today is not that day. You become one with that elastic band and soon its part of your skin. You see it there in the dark, you feel it there even under water. It is you and you are it.

At some point you have to be that big girl that doesn't cry. The one who says "Fairy tales don't always have a happy ending. And I foresee the dark ahead if I stay"...  Well I don't want to be that big girl. I want to cry. I do not want to go gentle into that good night. I want to rage. Rage against the dying of the light. My head will be bloody, but unbowed. And my soul ... unconquerable. This will not beat me.

Instead, I will feast. Feast on all the joy, happiness, love and light that life has to offer. Some days the weight of infertility is crushing and some days it makes me stronger than I ever thought I would need to be. And in the end when you add up all the days.... they are all good anyway. Even the bad ones. 

Because what could be better than being alive and being happy.

Friday, April 1, 2016

Dear future self...

Dear future self, 

I wish you could write and let me know things are ok. Let me know that my dreams have materialized. I wish you could tell me not to worry. Just to let it be. But I wonder if the outcome would be the same if you did? Would I try less harder? Would I surrender easier?

No, better you stay quiet. Let me fight my fires without knowing the degree of burn. I've never been one to need to know the end before I've embarked on the journey. Being prepared for every eventuality is very different from knowing the exact eventuality. 

Which one would you choose? Knowing one, or trying them all. I choose all. Otherwise what would you do with the rest of your time?

Rage. Rage against the dying of the light.

Monday, March 23, 2015

What happened to my nerve??

As I've grown older I've slowly started to lose my nerve. I don't even know how it happened?? 

For the past few weeks I've been toying with the idea of an extra ear piercing. And every time I go to Canal Walk to do it, I find some ridiculous reason why I just cannot do it right now. My hair is too grey, I still have more weight to lose, I look too mommyish today. Its just crazy. I've had a nose piercing and a belly piercing already just for giggles. And now a little hole in my ear is scary. Suspending yourself with hooks off your back is scary! Free climbing is scary! Come on, a little old ear piercing can not be where I top out on the scary chart. 

Back in the day I would just dive head first into any situation I thought might be cool, interesting, fun but now I think I've become a party pooper stick in the mud kind of person! Oh my Ghad. The more I think about it the more I realise how true that is. When I turned 30 I almost skydived, I had it booked and everything. When I turned 40 I had to have a lay down at a lovely luxurious hotel! Where has my gung-ho crazy self gone to? I've gone and killed it.

This situation requires a serious remedy. I want to say I'm going to do it tomorrow… but then I think I already drove out there today. Seems so silly to drive all that way again. Might as well wait a few days. Build some courage. And there I did it again. Its like an invisible shield. Subconsciously activated. Its exactly like gym. I know I need to go. But I never pack a bag and I always drive to the mall first because … well a girl needs coffee.

At the end of March it will be 1 year since I stopped working. I haven't learnt any discernible skill, developed any artistic talent, or advanced myself in anyway that I could proudly wave a flag for. I've taken a gap year and promptly in the flow lost my nerve.  

How do you reawaken that part of yourself? I love who I am right now. Its taken me a while to get here. I'm accepting and forgiving and loving towards myself. Seems perhaps I've also become to comfortable in the lazy section of myself. I don't know if its just getting older and wiser that makes you realise you don't need that much excitement as you did before. I actually need very little since I get excited when there's a new episode of How to get away with Murder on catchup!

I guess its this stage of life when you relax, enjoy and saviour each moment. When you let life wash over you for a little bit. And when you're done you plunge in and start to swim again.

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Super mom

No one can really prepare you for the perplexities of motherhood. When you become pregnant you are so caught up in the glow and wonderment that is your body. And the development of the little person inside you is all consuming. No matter what any other mothers tell you, you just know you will be different and you will try to do things better.

Let me tell you this, you wont. All mothers are in the exact same boat. We all have the same feelings, the same frustrations, the same goals, the same guilt. We make the same sacrifices and worry about the same things. It's the great equaliser for moms. From the moment that baby lands in your arms, your mind is filled with thoughts and questions and preparations for preparations. You have to feed, clothe, bathe, love, hug and devote all of yourself to this cute little kid. Each phase has new challenges. Have you played with them enough, have you taught them enough words, have you challenged them physically. Its a never ending marathon of hurdles to navigate. Just when you figure out how to do it well and have the routine running smoothly like a navy seal team, the bugger gets one year older and suddenly the game changes on the head.

You always feel like you're one step behind since the kid now dictates the play for the day and you dance around trying to maintain the order and rules that you wish them to learn. They learn it alright, as long as you keep pushing your agenda. Push too hard and they will push back, too soft and you will be disregarded like an empty, licked out kinder joy. Every day is different and always unpredictable. 

The thing that struck me the most is how quickly you can swing between being cheesed off about something they did, to feeling guilty for feeling cheesed off. From punishing them to feeling guilty about punishing them! I mean how the hell are you supposed to discipline and teach a kid things when you feel so bad for them. Those doe eyes teary and sad, promises of never doing it again, and apologies for the 10th time. You can forgive anything when you're faced with that. If the transgression is really bad you have to dig deep and go into crazy territory. Thats the only place the face of an angel can't reach you. Even then you have to turn away so they cannot see how funny you found what they just did. 

Yes indeed, the first kid is all about learning the rules and formulating the strategy for the next kid. I'm sure with number two you can see that kid coming from around the corner with his tricks. You get to be in charge and dictate the order of things. But alas, if what the other moms are saying is true… number two comes with an upgraded chip and suddenly whatever you learnt with number one is null and void. Might as well be starting from day one again! Only this time, they have an army and you're alone. Lol.

Yes that's what super moms do. We battle for sanity, appreciation, respect, love, order, discipline, success, achievement, progress. Only we don't fight this battle for ourselves. We fight it for our kids.